Saturday, November 19, 2011

Mini-Review - X-23 Issue #17 (Marvel Comics)

I've known about X-23, the character, for a few years now, and I've got a few things with her in, and she's a character I've wanted to know more about. I've been meaning to pick up the few solo trades she has, including the one for this most recent series, and I sort-of enjoyed the one-shot from the Women of Marvel theme that Marvel ran, which was collected in the not-so-great Mighty Marvel: Women of Marvel collection not too long ago.

So, here we are with issue 17 of the now-cancelled series, with only three more to go. I saw a preview of this on Comics Alliance, and I liked the look, but I was also confused as to Laura (X-23) being chosen to babysit. This is the girl with six retractable blades, history with the X-Men, the Weapon X Project and also the X-Men's secret and highly dangerous team, X-Force. She's not what I'd call the ideal babysitter, although one could easily argue that there's few better people around to protect others.

With a hint of trepidation, I got started. A few moments later, I was done. Wow, that was short. I mean really short. I count 20 pages of panels! I think I've had longer sneezing fits. Anyway, those 20 pages packed a nice amount of content (albeit with too many panels of Laura completely void of any expression. There weren't many characters (Hellions, Laura, Gambit, Wolverine, the two kids, Reed Richards and Sue Storm), and it didn't seem as if it needed the reader to have read every single bloody series Marvel is putting out, which makes it a great stand-alone, although I'm sure it does have deeper ties to some current events. The synopsis explains the basics well, and they should be enough for any new reader to get a quick grip on what is or isn't going on.

The art was really well drawn, and had a really nice blur effect to it, but I can see it only working for a few titles and art styles. Everything was really well drawn with a great attention to detail, and it worked wonders. The colours were fairly muted for the most part, but it created an effect that was easy on the eyes without sacrificing detail or contrast between objects. Whilst not part of the issue itself, the cover isn't actually that great. On my copy at least, the colouration for the skin tones in particular looks really poor, making Laura look like she's just escaped from a very hot bath.

X-23 #17 restored my faith in Marvel a little. The art was good, the writing was good, the characters were well drawn and portrayed, and I enjoyed the issue, even if I did feel it was a little short. The quality of the art and the writing just go to show that Marvel dropping this series was a mistake, and I hope they rethink that decision in the coming weeks.



  1. The reduced page count for the same price point is a bit frustrating.

    I love the cover to this issue. It reminds me of the 80's movie Adventures in Babysitting.

  2. I think it's supposed to, Ryan ;)

    The page count thing confuses me more than anything. Why? Just... Why?