REVIEW: X-Men Second Coming Interlude

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I suppose there had to be a week without an issue of X-Men: Second Coming shipping. Every week for 14 weeks was just too good to be true. As anxious as I am to know what’s coming next, the break just makes the anticipation that much sweeter. There’s only one more issue of each of the titles involved before the finale, so I’m expecting everyone to put out some of their best work once things start back up.

While we’re waiting, it provides an opportunity to say a few words about two of the Second Coming tie in books that slipped through the cracks last month.

X-Men: Second Coming – Revelations: X-Factor #205

This issue was not as exciting as part one, but it’s the middle chapter of three. It’s a much more personal assault on mutantkind than what’s happening in the main crossover issues. We see the MRD going after individual members of X-Factor as the team is currently scattered to the wind, and other team members stepping in to make the save.

The book features artwork from Valentine DeLandro and Pat Davidson on the interiors. It was hit or miss for my tastes from page to page, which was disappointing since the first few pages of the book looked great. The David Yardin cover looks cool even if it doesn’t directly reflect what’s happening in the book.

While they were minor points, I really appreciated the references to World War Hulk: X-Men and the X-Factor: Nation X book. These comics were decent but stood a bit out of continuity with all the other things happening in the X-titles. I liked that Peter David found a way to acknowledge them in the main X-Factor series.

Layla Miller’s costume and technology are really interesting and have me interested in her long term story again, as she was a big part of Messiah Complex I’m hoping there’s something big coming from her in the final tie in to Second Coming next month. I’m really looking forward to seeing where it’s all going as the MRD really seem to have the upper hand, X-Factor is on the run, and Bolivar Trask is trying (and failing) to resist Bastion’s control.

X-Men: Second Coming – Revelations: Blind Science

I really liked this, but I already had a special appreciation for the X-Club. The book focuses on Kavita Rao, but everyone has a chance to shine. Graydon Creed of the Human Council comes to the forefront and his attack on an oil platform near the X-Men’s island home of Utopia gives us glimpse of the future mutantkind has in store. This vision includes a version of Hank McCoy we haven’t quite seen before, even if it’s not all what it appears to be.

The action is clearly set between Chapter ø8 and ø9. I really like that it’s so clear where this fits in. It’s a another great use of the tie-in issues in this series. We really get an appreciation of how much planning has gone into every aspect of Bastion’s attack on mutantkind.

The artwork of Paul Davidson and Francis Portella was a little confusing at points but overall I liked its muddy grittiness. I love the Gerald Parel cover. It’s perfect for the book and really depicts the X-Club in the way I want to envision them.

I’m not familiar writer Simon Spurrier, but he told an entertaining story and captured the X-Club’s voices for the most part. Although there were times Madison Jeffries seemed a little more rough around the edges than I’ve read him before.

Overall, I really liked this book. It was a great way to use this group of characters in Second Coming and it represents a really effective way to work ancillary stories into a big crossover.

More on X-Men: Second Coming
Chapter ø9 / Chapter 10
X-Factor #204 / X-Factor #206

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