Credits: Written by Larry Hama, pencils by Adam Kubert, inks by Dan Green and edited by Bob Harras
Cast: Earth 295 versions of Logan/Weapon X, Jean Grey, Mariko Yashida, Box, Copycat, Donald Pierce and his two goons Clegg and Slocum.
Plot: Bristol, UK and refugees from Apocalypse’s America have arrived in Europe. The evacuation seen here has ended and Weapon-X and Jean Grey are helping out with getting these people to safety. Rather this than talk over Jean’s objections to the Human High Councils plan to bomb America back into the stone age, committed an act of genocide once undreamed of. Also hidden amongst the humans are the mutants Box and Copycat who start shooting into the crowd immediate. Logan dives into them and is brutal in his dealings with them. Watching this battle are Pierce, Clegg and Slocum, cyborgs who have worked for Apocalypse’s forces who are using this melee as a distraction to help them with their own more covert mission.
Once Box and Copycat are down, a point of tension comes up with Logan and Jean as he mentions how it seemed that when he rescued her from Sinister’s Breeding Pens, when he lost his hand taking one of Cyclops’ eyes, Jean didn’t seem that keen to go. Logan then leaves to brief the High Council.
Logan talks with Lady Mariko Yashida over old times and Mariko’s doubts over the upcoming attack on America. As they talk, Pierce, Clegg and Slocum, three cyborgs who snuck in at Bristol during the battle with Copycat and Box, attacks the airships which house both the Human High Council and the equipment guiding the missiles. With one airship already on fire and the others at risk, Weapon-X dives the for the flaming airship before it can hit the guidance one.
Falling through the fire, the now bald and burnt Logan makes short work of Clegg and Slocum. He’s about to kill Pierce, who detonates a bomb destroying the flaming airship as well as the guidance ship. The only survivor of these flaming wrecks is the burning body of Weapon-X. But it’s too late, the guidance equipment is gone and the strike on America is dead in the water.
In a sad denouement to this whole thing, Jean leaves, unable to just let the attack happen. Logan will have to kill her to stop her and it looks like she thinks he will do it. He won’t and she flies off. With Apocalypse’s America about to be warned, all seems lost for the human rebellion in the Age of Apocalypse.
Notes: After the dour and misery filled Generation Next 2, this is more of an action movie with an apocalyptic theme going on. Action set pieces interspersed with weight conversations and slim characterisation. After such a dense and atmospheric series, this switch was a welcome one. This issue does the action well and pulls you along for the ride as it leaves you asking questions. Questions like who is the good guy here? Is is Apocalypse’s side? All genetic purity and oppression. Is is the Human High Council? The ones who authorised a genocidal bombardment. Is Jean right to leave? Was Logan right to let her? All these and more are raised and there is not one answer offered, the issue is being better because of it.
Writing: 3 out of 5 – The writing is utilitarian, characterisation is slim if not non-existent and only seems to get you to the next action scene. There is no nuance to Hama’s Logan, who is all anger and defiance, but you know what you are reading and it’s fit for purpose if a little uninteresting.
Art: 4 out of 5 – I am no great fan of the X-Men work of the Kuberts, but Adam Kuberts cartoony style matches the balls to the wall feel of Weapon-X’s world. From the scene in Bristol, which opens really well to the airship battle at the end. Whilst Warren Ellis and Bryan Hitch’s Authority was credited with introducing wide-screen comics visuals, the scene where Weapon-x falls through fire is cinematic as hell, with moments that look just like films such as the Terminator. Even the last scene works because of the art with Logan looking broken as Jean flies off, unsure if he has lost her, or even if he will ever see her again.
Overall: 7 out of 10 – This is not the exciting heart of the Age of Apocalypse, but it is fund and engaging sci-fi action and delivers what it promises and delivers it well. This may not sound like great praise, but delivering a solid product shouldn’t be overlooked and it made me glad to read this again, not something that I expected in relation to a Wolverine comic.
Next time: Death comes for one of the cast of the Amazing Spider-Man… what again?