Excalibur # 1 Review
Here’s my Excalibur # 1 review which was written by Tini Howard with art by Marcus To, Eric Arciniega on colors and Cory Petit on lettering.
So the third X-book under the Dawn of X banner has been released and does it stand as highly as the other X-Men titles out so far? The answers yes.
It seems like with Marvel giving Jonathan Hickman full control of the X-books after House of X and Powers of X, they’ve managed to provide consitently good # 1s. There’s no pilot issue that’s been boring; everything has its own unique flavor and appeal. Last week’s review of Marauders # 1 gave you a hint at what fun a book with big name X-Men going on a mission to rescue trapped mutants; this week, we deal with magic and touch on another point of X-Men history that’s been forgotten through the years, the realm of Otherworld and the UK mutants.
Which is why it was a good call to title the book Excalibur. Because this is exactly what this is, a book on all the fringe or X-books edge stuff.
It’s also a place where we get a reunion of sorts for the X-Men blue team. Did you notice that Marauders had three of the members of the Gold Team? Yeah, pretty subtle Marvel.
Tini Howard delivers a good script drawn from the perspective mostly of Elisabeth Braddock aka Psylocke. She’s recently returned to her original body and has taken residence with her twin brother Brian Braddock aka Captain Britain. And since she’s a mutant, she’s clearly summoned back to the nation of Krakoa to be with her kind; mutants.
Initially, I had a weird thing for the Morgan La Fay plot and thought that this was going to show us Apocalypse and his eventual betrayal of the mutant cause; because Hickman has been building towards that, Apocalypse finding a way to restore his original four horsemen and waging war on Krakoa’s “twin”, Arrako.
If there’s anything that could confuse readers here, its the convuluted history of the Braddocks. I’d like to think that the Braddock siblings have deep ties to X-Men history but they are nowhere near as popular as other stories related to the X-Men. So when the scene with a returning character makes it onto the page, most readers would just probably “Ok then”.
It doesn’t incite curiosity and its not that appealing to be honest. Unless we find a way to make this formerly dead mutant do some significant good (or bad) then we’re stuck with this status quo.
I’d like to think that this book wants to tie up loose ends with the whole Braddock/Captain Britain storylines.
Gambit and Rogue
This book continues to explore Gambit and Rogue’s relationship now that they’re married. Its sad to see Mr and Mrs X go, but that’s the price you pay for streamlining a franchise book. For this issue of Excalibur # 1, we got some rather saucy dialogue between Anna Marie and Remy and its got people talking.
That’s the other main thrust of Excalibur. Religion and sex. Well, not entirely sex, but rather subtle talks about reproduction and helping boost the numbers of the gathered mutants in Krakoa. Not only did Gambit and Rogue discuss this (with a hint that there could be a baby LeBeau in the works), there’s also Apocalypse commenting about the number of children this massive mutant party could generate. Can’t blame the blue Darwinist mutant too, as he has been crazy with genetics and evolution.
Also love how Howard writes Remy whenever Apocalypse is around. He’s still pissed at Apocalypse because… umm.. Horseman of Death??
Jubilee in this book isn’t just a reminder that she was a member of the 90s blue team once, it also helps build more backstory for her because we haven’t seen her since she reverted back to her mutant form after ditching the vampire thing. My only gripe? Shogo is still a baby. Shouldn’t he be grown up a bit already?
Excalibur # 1 Review
Excalibur was good. Not going to go gaga over it because there’s just so much backstory but at the same time, its very, very promising. Again, the book stars a good cast and this will also be Apocalypse’s main story. If you want to see more of “Good Guy Apocalypse”, then Excalibur is definitely the book for you.