Extraordinary X-Men #10 Review

Extraordinary X-Men #10
Writer: Jeff Lemire
Pencils: Humberto Ramos
Colors: Edgar Delgado
Letters: Joe Caramagna
Publisher: Marvel

The Apocalypse Wars continue here, in writer Jeff Lemire’s Extraordinary X-Men #10.  Colossus and his young team of X-Men were tracking a recent appearance of 600 new mutants in Japan.  They then discovered they were artificially created mutant embryos by the Sugar Man.  A scuffle ensued and Colossus and his team found themselves 1000 years in the future.  Storm and her team of X-Men, consisting of Iceman, Nightcrawler, Logan, Jean Grey, and Cerebra came to their rescue while Magik and Forge stay behind.  However, when they arrived the young mutants had aged dramatically and Colossus had transformed into a Horseman of Apocalypse.  Now the X-Men are desperately trying to save what’s left of mutantkind in what is called, Omega World.

After a frustrating previous issue where the plot came to an abrupt halt,  issue #10 thankfully gets the narrative moving forward.  We get some solid action scenes between the X-Men and Apocalypse’s new Horsemen.  It’s a bit too much of familiar territory when it comes to the X-Men but what makes this issue stand out is the character moments, particularly with Illyana Rasputin, Magik.

A new mutant has recently been brought to the teams new home, X-Haven, her name is Sapna and she has a lot of potential.  Her mutant abilities are linguistic in nature, able to absorb, translate, and fully understand languages of anything and anyone around her.  When her powers manifested she was in Limbo so she absorb an abundance of magical knowledge and Magik has taken the role as her mentor.

Illyana had always been a psychologically messed up character, similar to Scarlet Witch but more cynical in her own nature.  It’s nice to see Lemire turn her into a more level-headed and mature person who’s developing her into the role of a teacher.  We see her interact with Sapna in sort of older sister way.  There’s also a great scene where we see Illyana comfort Forge when he expresses doubt in himself and is in denial over his relationship with Storm.  Seeing Illyana grow into a more seasoned X-Man in this issue is a real treat.

However, there is one moment that I don’t know what to make of.  When all seems lost there is a rather jarring scene where Ororo succumbs to adversity and it feels out of character.  Unlike Magik, Storm has always been one of the more secure and right-minded of the X-Men.  She’s the one you go to for emotional support.  It does turn into a strong character moment for Iceman, it’s just unfortunate that it had to come about at the expense of another characters strength.

Humberto Ramos again is on penciling duties in this issue and he again executes some superb visuals.  His style has a lot of expression to it and allows for the fantastic.    Sometimes the X-Men books can be bogged down with depressing stories along with dreary and bleak artwork.  It’s refreshing to see an X-Men book that allows for fun visuals being used to tell an everyday X-Men story.  The only negatives about his work on this series thus far I believe are the costumes.  They aren’t bad they just come off as a bit dull.  That is except for Jean Grey’s which is a nice throwback to her old school green and yellow costume.  Colorist Victor Olazaba turns in some solid work as well as this issue is very bright, colorful, and complements Ramos’ pencils perfectly.

Final Verdict

The new flagship series for one of Marvel’s most beloved franchises is starting to get back on track.  It’s clear that Lemire has a passion for these characters as they’re all spot on with their interactions with one another.  It just gets bogged down by this more then likely mandated cross-over featuring a villain who hasn’t appeared in X-Men books for awhile, but he’s in an upcoming movie so they have to take advantage of that.  Hopefully Lemire will be able to write his own stories when the cross-over is all said and done.  With that said though this is still a solid issue that’ll hold readers interest enough with its character development, superb artwork, and pretty stellar cliffhanger.

Score: 3 out of 5

Review by Eric Bradach

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