X-Men Legends #7 by Larry Hama

X-Men Legends (2021-) #7X-Men Legends (2021-) #7 by Larry Hama
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a classic slice of old school Wolverine action, which is exactly what you’d expect from an X-Men Legends issue written by Larry Hama. Wolverine and Jubilee are on the trail of some missing young mutants, which brings them into conflict with Lady Deathstrike and the Hand…because of course it does.

Which is not a complaint, this is great stuff! It’s also well drawn by Billy Tan, although I would have preferred to see him inked by someone else, but it seems that it’s increasingly common to have pencillers ink themselves, or to just skip straight to colours, these days. I guess it saves time and money…

I’m still not sure that there’s really a point to this book, other than nostalgia, but it’s pretty enjoyable stuff.

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X-Men Legends #6 by Peter David

X-Men Legends (2021-) #6X-Men Legends (2021-) #6 by Peter David
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

What is the point of this comic? Why does it exist? The first two issues were great, genuinely filling in a gap in X-Men continuity that has bugged people for decades. The second arc was less good, and felt less necessary, but there was a slight gap to fill and it filled it, sure…and, you know, who’s going to say no to a few more issues of Simonson X-Factor. But, this? Just…why?

There’s so much wrong here. First and foremost, we get a lot of talk about all the lives that are at stake, all the people within the Latverian embassy that X-Factor are saving. But we never see them. We only see the Latverian mutants who’ve taken them hostage. This means that the stakes are entirely abstract and, honestly, we couldn’t care less whether X-Factor succeed or fail.

Then there’s those Latverian mutants who’ve taken over the embassy. The comic flatly refuses to decide whether they’re in the right or not. They’ve been experimented on by Doom against their will, but ultimately X-factor go and fetch Doom to come and deal with them. Then, on the final page, it’s heavily implied that Rahne just walks away while letting Doom flat out murder them all.

This comic is incredibly strange. I don’t understand why it was made. I don’t know who this is for. I just don’t get it.

Next month we have Wolverine and Jubilee. Let’s hope that’s better, eh?

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X-Men Legends (2021-) #5 by Peter David

X-Men Legends (2021-) #5X-Men Legends (2021-) #5 by Peter David
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Would it be churlish of me to point out that of the five issues of X-Men Legends we’ve had so far only two of them have actually been about the X-Men? At this point a more appropriate title might be “X-Factor Legends.”

This series was billed as a way for X-writers to return to their classic lines and finally tie up some of those dangling plot threads the X-books of the 90s were so famous for. Like…was Adam X the third Summers brother? And…uh…well…that’s the problem. That’s really the only one anyone can remember. So we’ve also got a bit of X-Factor that nobody can really remember, and now a of the second era of X-Factor in which the team apparently dealt with a hostage situation at the Latverian embassy.

And don’t get me wrong, it’s well written and well drawn, but I’m sure there were some actual mysteries from this period that were never resolved. Like that whole thing with the Traitor…no…wait…that was Onslaught…I must have blanked that out…

Anyway, you get my point…five issues in and while the first two issues answered questions I’d be wondering about for the best part of thirty years…the rest has felt like, “here are some comics done in the style of old comics, by the same people who made those comics, mostly.” While that’s fun, at the moment it doesn’t feel like it has much to offer beyond a nostalgia hit.

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X-Men Legends #4 by Louise Simonson

X-Men Legends #4X-Men Legends #4 by Louise Simonson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a solid, nostalgic trip down memory lane that’s likely to satisfy fans of the Simonsons.

I’ll be honest, I would have enjoyed it a bit more if I could remember the story it’s leading into, but it’s been a very, very long time since I read this run of X-Factor.

Nevertheless, the writing is great and the artwork is superb, and the old school lettering is a particular treat.

We’re in for more X-Factor next time, but it’s a return to Peter David’s first run on the book, which should be interesting.

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X-Men Legends #3 by Louise Simonson

X-Men Legends #3X-Men Legends #3 by Louise Simonson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Wow, this was a real nostalgia trip for me!

Some of the first comics I ever read were part of Louise and Walt Simonson’s run on X-Factor, specifically the Fall of the Mutants, so this really takes me back.

There not a lot happening, really, just some cool stuff with Ship losing control and turning on the team…plus Apocalypse recovering Cameron Hodge’s head and building him a new robot body. I’ve got to admit, although I have read the original run, it was a long time ago and unlike the mystery of the third Summers brother, what happened to Cameron Hodge is not a mystery that’s been playing on my mind for thirty years.

Nevertheless, this is great stuff! Of course then writing and art by the Simonsons is superb, but the lettering, by John workman, is also a nostalgic treat.

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X-Men Legends (2021-) #2 by Fabian Nicieza

X-Men Legends (2021-) #2X-Men Legends (2021-) #2 by Fabian Nicieza
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ah, yes, the second issue of X-Men Leg Ends! The series which brings you nothing by close ups of the feet of all your favourite X-Men! Marvel at Wolverine’s feet! Revel in Marvel Girl’s toes! It’s all feet all the time! And that’s why they didn’t get Rob Liefeld to draw it…

(Sorry, Rob)

Annnnd, that’s my April Fool’s joke out of the way, on with the review!

Well, there’s not really much more to say about this than I said in my review of #1. The writing’s great, the art is appropriately 90s, and it exists purely to tie up a loose end from Fabian Nicieza’s original X-Men run. If you care about these things, and I do, then you’ll love it. Otherwise your mileage is likely to vary. It does what it does and it does it very well.

It also explains why none of the characters involved have mentioned this in the last quarter of a century. Which is a good thing, it’s done well and it makes sense.

So, yeah, I enjoyed this, and I’m now looking forward to the Simonson’s taking over the book.

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X-Men Legends (2021-) #1 by Fabian Nicieza

X-Men Legends (2021-) #1X-Men Legends (2021-) #1 by Fabian Nicieza
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Marvel get Brett Booth to draw another X-Men book, but this time it works. And, if you’re able to set aside some things he’s said on social media in the past (and it’s understandable if you can’t) he does some pretty solid work on this book. It screams mid-nineties, sure, but that’s entirely appropriate as this is a story set after #39 of the nineties adjectiveless X-Men series, with repeated references to an issue of Captain Marvel from 1995.

As for that story, if the whole “third Summers brother” dangling plot thread has been bothering you for a quarter of a century and you really, really want the true identity and backstory of Adam-X “The Extreme” to be resolved…well, this is the comic for you. If you have NO IDEA what I’m talking about then, uh, you could do worse than listening to Jay & Miles X-Plain The X-Men who have, I know, covered it in depth. Well, in as much depth as obscure X-Men dangling plotlines from the mid-nineties deserve.

This book very much captures the feel of mid-nineties X-men comics, and how much you liked mid-nineties X-Men will probably determine how much you like enjoy this comic. The one thing that works against it is that, at the time, this plotline would almost certainly have been interwoven with several other ongoing plotlines. The fact that these aren’t slotted in between scene transitions actually feels a little jarring at times, and things feel a little rushed as a consequence. However, that’s definitely made up for with…well…just the thrill of finally having this gap filled.

Because, you see, I have spent the last twenty five years wondering about this, because I’m that kind of obsessive nerd. This book was made for me and people like me, and if I could travel back in time and tell my friends on the Comics And Anime forum on AOL not to worry, because in twenty five years time they’d go back and resolve this dangling plotline it would…well…it would be really, really weird, actually. But probably no weirder than a lot of my posts on that forum.

Anyway, yes, good comic is good, but your mileage may well vary.

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