Marvel Knights: X-Men #2 (Comics Review)

Marvel recently relaunched its Marvel Knights brand of comics, with Matt Kindt’s Spider-Man and Brahm Revel’s X-Men. The latter is the only of the two that I have taken any interest in, and the first issue launched last month proved to be quite a decent opening issue that tells a low-key, low-stakes story where the focus is on the characters first and the action second. Like I remarked in my review for it, the current crop of X-Men books all seem to be focused on telling the grand stories that affect absolutely everything and Marvel Knights: X-Men fills a niche in the opposite side of the spectrum.

The first issue set the stage for all the characters and it gave us an intro to the primary characters: Wolverine, Kitty and Rogue, as they set out for a small town somewhere in West Virginia where Rachel has seen visions of a mutant kid being murdered in cold blood. The story wasn’t all that dark per se but it did have a pretty serious message to it, and the message was that the X-Men protect their own, even when that person is not actually a part of the team. Revel worked in some really interesting commentary from all the characters and that was part of the reason I liked it so much. The second issue proves to be more of the same.

Marvel Knights - X-Men 02The best thing about this issue is that in addition to all the great character drama, Revel notches up the action significantly here. The cliffhanger from the previous issue is dealt with here and we see Logan in some of his best fight scenes as he lets loose among the enemy and pretty much goes all out. Rogue and Kitty also get a piece of the ass-kicking action and when the three of them finally get down to the bottom of what’s going on in the town (almost) they are left stunned and shocked. The trick is in the specific power that one of the young mutants in the town possesses, and I have to say that its a great plot point as well.

Revel’s Wolverine in this issue starts off really good, but then he kind of becomes a little obsesses ad quite judgmental. It was a weird shift in his character, the depths of his feelings to be exact, and I was surprised since Revel did a pretty good job on him in the previous issue. All the same, it does add a lot of tension to the three-man team and where the safety of the mutants in the town is concerned, his attitude does make a lot of sense.

Kitty and Rogue get their development a little later than him, when they are all sitting down at a restaurant and trying to figure our just what the hell is going on in this town. We get introduced to a new character, Darla, earlier in the issue and much of the second half of the issue is about her and her powers, how they manifest and how she (unintentionally) uses them. The way that Darla’s tragic backstory unfolds, you can’t help but feel sorry for her. And all the discussions in the second half emphasise how tough her life is, and how the three experienced and older mutants plan to deal with her. I quite liked Darla’s character and I would definitely like to see more of her as well.

As with the last time, Revel returns for the art duties on this book, alongside Christiane (Cris) Peter who does the colours on this issue. His characters are much more distinct this time around as compared to the last time, and while something about his characters’ proportions, the fact that they are all perhaps a bit too thin and less bulky in Wolverine’s case, is still off, I still enjoyed the artwork. Even when the characters’ faces weren’t all that clear in those panels when the camera angle essentially zooms out to give a wide view of the entire scene. Peter’s colours are definitely quite fun in comparison however. There is a distinctive thematic darkness to the colours, but that works very well for the story that Revel is telling so it all gels together in the end and the issue ends up being better than I expected.

I’ll have to say that Revel and Peter surprised me a bit with this issue, given how good it was and I’m hoping that they continue on with this streak in the remaining three issues of the mini-series.

Rating: 9/10

More Marvel Knights: X-Men: #1.

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Posted on December 9, 2013, in Comics Reviews, Review Central and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

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