X-Factor #10 by Leah Williams

X-Factor #10X-Factor #10 by Leah Williams
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I could talk about the excellent character moments in this book.

I could talk about the rushed resolution of the Prodigy subplot that was really nobody’s fault as this book got cancelled.

I could talk about Eye Boy’s ascension from joke character to an actually awesome character with really useful powers.

I could talk about a lot of things, but all that really matters is that last page reveal and what it might mean.

Bring on The Trial of Magneto!

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X-Factor (2020-) #9 by Leah Williams

X-Factor (2020-) #9X-Factor (2020-) #9 by Leah Williams
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The end of the whole Morrigan saga, and the return of Shatterstar, feels a little rushed, but that’s understandable given that the next issue will be the final issue of X-Factor, and that issue will be the Hellfire Gala, so everything needed to be tied up this issue.

Despite feeling rushed it’s an enjoyable issue, and it’s always pleasing when the answer is Shatterstar, even if it’s never really explained why the answer is Shatterstar.

There is, as ever, a nice amount of fun little interpersonal relationship bits, which has been the real strength of this book.

It’s a shame this book is ending as it’s ben a lot of fun, but it does explain why Polaris is moving to the new X-Men book, and I’m hopeful that a lot of the characters and themes from this will carry over to some of the new book moving forward.

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X-Factor (2020-) #8 by Leah Williams

X-Factor (2020-) #8X-Factor (2020-) #8 by Leah Williams
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this, as I’ve enjoyed this entire run so far…but (and you knew it was coming) the big action set piece at the end was just too hard to follow and far too confusing. I honestly have no idea what they did. Sometimes a writer needs to step back and let the art tell the story, but this was clearly not one of those times.

Otherwise, a very enjoyable issue, and Williams and Baldeon still excel in portraying those quiet, character moments. And Amazing Baby is still precious.

For me, though, the highlight of the issue was the final page, as Professor X sends a request to Northstar and he responds. And that’s all I can say about that without spoiling it!

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X-Factor (2020-) #7 by Leah Williams

X-Factor (2020-) #7X-Factor (2020-) #7 by Leah Williams
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Honestly, I’m running our of superlatives. This book is just so good.

From the mystery of Prodigy’s death…did he or did he not die…and if he didn’t what does that mean in regards to his resurrection? Are there two of him? To the jaw dropping tenderness of Daken and Aurora’s romance…these are two incredibly damaged people who’ve somehow found each other and are coming together…incredibly cautiously…so as not to hurt each other or be hurt themselves. And everything in-between, which is woven together with this thread of exploring abuse and its consequences. This is just amazingly good work.

Brilliantly written by Williams and perfectly complemented by Baldeon’s wonderfully expressive art.

It seems this book is going to dark places and I am quite happy to let this creative team lead me there.

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X-Factor #6 by Leah Williams

X-Factor #6X-Factor #6 by Leah Williams
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

With every passing issue I just love this comic more.

This one would have been worth the price of admission just for that opening scene of the team having breakfast and outrageously flirting with each other, but there was so much more to enjoy…from the send up of police procedurals to the incredible deep-dive throwback to Siryn’s deal with the Morrigan from Peter David’s X-Factor run…and everything in between.

There’s even some foreshadowing (hopefully) of the return of Tommy (aka Speed) to the pages of Marvel Comics, after far too long an absence (aka “Billy Kaplan has a brother, remember?”). Eventually the Krakoans are going to have to deal with all the implications of branding the Scarlet Witch as “The Great Pretender” and what that means in regards to her two mutants sons, one of whom is currently married to the Emperor of space. It’s likely that’ll play out in the pages of S.W.O.R.D. but it’d be interesting to see what effect it has on some of the mutants who are friends with the twins.

The writing is clever and witty, the art is gorgeous…if you like Baldeon’s style, and I have since his work on Domino. All in all, this is one of my favourite X-titles right now, and given the quality of the line, that’s really saying something!

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X-Factor (2020-) #5 by Leah Williams

X-Factor (2020-) #5X-Factor (2020-) #5 by Leah Williams
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is something of a breather issue as we come down from the whirlwind that was X Of Swords. Wind Dancer gets resurrected, and we find out exactly why she wanted to die…it was the only way to escape the Mojoverse. Williams is doing a great job of making Mojo and the Mojoverse feel genuinely threatening in a way that it really hasn’t in a very long time.

We also get a moment with Emma, mourning the loss of Santo, which was very well done.

I’d like to take a moment to single out the “Why didn’t you just leave?” text section. Which is both powerful and incredibly well written. I don’t know if it’s going to be relevant to the plot, and that almost doesn’t matter, but it’s a brilliant glimpse into an abusive relationship and I really hope that it helps some of the people that read it.

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X-Factor (2020-) #4 by Leah Williams

X-Factor (2020-) #4X-Factor (2020-) #4 by Leah Williams
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Okay, once again I find myself reviewing a comic by someone I’ve previously worked with, having inked Carlos Gomez on several occasions…but only on covers, so I wasn’t too familiar with his sequential work, which is great here.

As it says on the cover, this is X Of Swords part 2 (of 22) and, as such, it’s very much not a continuation of the current X-Factor run. The only nod to this being an issue of X-Factor is that Polaris is central to the plot. But, I’m not even mad about that, because this is good, and makes a refreshing change to crossover tie-in issues that are only tangentially related to the crossover they’re tying in to.

This issue also resolves a very important plot point from X Of Swords, namely: How are there any stakes to a tournament in which people fight each other to the death when they can just be resurrected? The answer is…well…a spoiler…but suffice it to say that the stakes are significantly raised.

It also suggests that X Of Swords might have some significant and lasting consequences for some of the characters involved. Which is equal parts exciting and terrifying.

But what’s certain is that I’m hooked!

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