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X-Factor #136 - Reaper Madness [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]

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X-Factor #136 [Mar. 29th, 2011|07:59 pm]
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X-Factor then and ...then, but less so.

Cover Browser is real helpful at times.

Writer: Howard Mackie
Penciller: Jeff Matsuda

Yes! The 90s! One of the best periods in comics!
You're an idiot.

A man walks into a base... Sabretooth turns to the Canadian and guts him.
And everybody else.

Yesterday, I told you about X-Factor #1, with the original X-Men running an "anti-mutant" company. It had open, airy art and colours, fairly realistic.
It told a pretty good conflict, stemming from natural characterisation.
'cept the anti-mutant public.

This one has cartoonish art, a team of Forge, Mystique, WildChild, Polaris, Shard, and Sabretooth. They're an ex-government team going 'underground'. (I don't think they've done so yet this issue).

What have these two comics got in common?
I don't know either.

Do you see the cartooniness of that cover? Did you read the wonderfully subtle and classy dialogue?
Really, that should cover the whole issue. But I'll entertain you with a review anyway.
Bore them, you mean.
Shut up!

The art is cartoonish right through, and the colour and storyline are (mostly) dark.
Who thought that was a good match?
Rilly, who?
That was the look in the 90s. Oh, how well remembered they are.
The 90s were gr--
We all know what you think.

I keep saying comics should spend more time on pure characterisation. This one does it. It does a decent job of it too, though it does seem to be all about creating faux conflict (though that doesn't entirely happen in this issue). Wildchild turns whiney - he's acting like a stereotyped teenager.
Mystique sets him up, claiming to be practising.
Shard... Shard is the least worst. (She's Bishop's sister, btw.)

Sabretooth gets his inhibition collar off and guts everyone else.
Yeah! You go, boy!

It isn't in a DC gorn kind of way, lovingly dwelling on views of blood and guts... well not of 'and guts', anyway.
Aww, that's boring. I wanna see guts and body parts spilled everywhere!
Well, you don't get to. Read 52 if you want that. Or something less classy.
This one's so sterile that right after Sabretooth slashes his claws across Polaris's back, her skin is undamaged. Really. With her top, you can totally see.
Aww, man, really?
Really really.

Also, at the opening, you have a soldier letting a guy in the base because his clearance is 'level 12 alpha!' 'I thought they only went to level 10 as well...' So why let him in? Why assume that that level of clearance is real! And you shave that moustache while on duty, soldier!
I have level 13.
Of course you do.

A lot of the characterisation takes the form of the kind of 'I'm bad!' humour that's taken the place of character development in so many X-titles these days, again, setting up false conflict. It's not always worth it.

The dark colours, the 'I'm Bad' characters... Who says the 90s are over?
Not me! 90s and Twenteens forever, bub!
There were pages of bright colours in here.
What? How could you?
Heh heh.

I don't recommend this period in X-Factor history. This issue isn't the worst, and it has its moments, but overall it isn't fun comics.