Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
X-Men Divided We Stand #2 of 2
Carey, Eaton, Hennessy, D’Armata, Cebulski, Yardin, Rauck, Schmidt, Irving, Swierczynski. Burnham, Fairbairn, Lafuente, Strain, Caramagna & Peterson
This issue provides five short stories about various X-Men trying to cope with their lives after the Messiah Complex war and the disbanding of the X-Men. Generally speaking you could probably deduce that if you like the characters featured in this issue then you will like the issue. I’m not so sure about this though. At least two of these stories give very shallow looks at these characters, possibly in the hopes of getting you to read future series about them. What I’m saying is that, in some cases, the stories felt like teasers and not adding any significant value to the character.
Beast is the first story. Basically he is moping up the mansion. He is reminiscing some, he is shredding some papers and he is taking some brains that were preserved. This story was probably the best in the issue. Beast takes the reader down the road that is his life and the life of a typical X-Man. It provided some good insight into both, the Beast and the workings of the goings on in the mansion. The artwork was also stellar. When drawn well, the Beast may be the best character in the X-Men arsenal to show off some skills and this issue provides that. I would think Beast fans would like this story a lot.
The second story is about Illyana Rasputin. You may recall she is the sister of Colossus and is also stuck in limbo – as in next to hell. She is pretty much alone and is trying to understand how to get out of her predicament. Basically, she hinges everything on the faith that the X-Men are still fighting the good fight up above. When she finds out the X-Men are done she is faced with the prospect of giving up. It’s a good story. The artwork is also really good in this story. How is that a little girl with a Fozzy Bear stuffed animal ends up hanging out with the devil?
The third story is about Havok. To be honest I don’t follow the Vulcan stories, so this could have been a good way to fill me in. However, this story was just so whiny. I didn’t like the artwork either. After reading this I still have no idea how or why Havok is where he is and why is always crying. I just didn’t connect with this story at all and I would love to know what a die hard Havok fan thought of this story. I cant believe this character is this dull and drab.
Next up is Forge. This one could have been interesting except it spends much too much time telling us about Bishop and the flashback of Bishop stealing an arm and a time machine. I would argue that you already know this if you follow the Cable series or it isn’t relevant because you aren’t following the Cable series. Otherwise I would say this story is more about Bishop than about Forge. The artwork was a mixed bag for me. It was so detailed when showing Forge’s brain and yet, when showing Bishop’s burned stump, it looks more like a brain than Forge’s actual brain! This story just didn’t fly with me. I’m not even sure if this story was in character for Forge.
Last up is Surge visiting Moonstar. Surge basically complains. She complains about her failed leadership, the way Cyclops used them and her mistakes while an X-Man. It came across as totally out of her character. Wouldn’t she confide all this in David, the person she cares about? Why Moonstar? The story just didn’t add any value to either character. The artwork was good in most spots, but in some panels there isn’t one stitch of background. It’s as if they are floating in mid air.
So there you have it. Five stories. I really liked two of them. I thought two of them where way out of character and I couldn’t make heads of tails of the other. That kind of spells disappointment to me. It’s interesting that I liked the first installment so much and the Pixie story that given out for free on Free Comic Book Day. I wonder how much I would have liked it if I read this one first. This issue is really for the hardcore X fans I feel. A new reader or a casual reader will most likely be lost or disinterested.
2 out of 5 geek goggles
X-Men Divided We Stand #1 (of 2)
X-Men Divided We Stand #2 (of 2)