Friday, June 12, 2009

"The Colonel" reviews X-men Forever #1

As promised, I asked Daron "The Colonel" Jensen to review one Marvel book a week for me to post on my blog, since I have a tough time keeping up with the Marvel U in a timely fashion.  Daron loves his Marvel and is now an official contributor on Marvel's ongoing monthly "Official Index".  Pick up your copy today at your local Amazing Fantasy!  His love of Marvel has finally paid off, first Marvel started paying him to write about comics and now he is writing about them for free on here.  Fame is just around the corner for him.  I can't wait until he kicks Joe Quesada out of his office.  (JK of course, but still it would be SO cool!) So here is what Daron thinks about ol' Chris Claremont's newest effort:

X-Men Forever #1

 What if…  Chris Claremont never left the X-Men in 1991?

 That’s the hook of X-Men Forever, and it picks up from where X-Men #3 left off 18 years ago, more or less making this X-Men #4.  Cyclops & Marvel Girl haven’t married, Gambit hasn’t started dating Rogue, and Wolverine hasn’t had his adamantium ripped out by Magneto.  This series is what Claremont would have done instead of those stories.  To remind us of what was going on with the X-Men in November of 1991 Marvel has recently reprinted X-Men #1-3 as X-Men Forever #0, and if we missed that, there’s a handy recap page to get things rolling this issue. 

 X-Men Forever #1 opens with the X-Men hot on the heels of Fabian Cortez for killing Magneto, and sets up Claremont’s status quo for the book:  Mutants are more hated and feared than before thanks to Cortez’s actions; the American Government has assigned Col. Nick Fury to oversee mutant affairs—particularly the X-Men, there’s a romance brewing between Wolverine & Marvel Girl; Nightcrawler & Shadowcat are considering leaving Excalibur to rejoin the X-Men; and Storm has a secret. 

 There’s a lot going on in this issue, but it effectively sets up its story and subplots without being heavy-handed about it.  The scenes click along nicely with a deliberate pace, there’s a good balance between the adventure and drama, and every character gets their own introduction/reminder.  The book benefits greatly from solid art by Tom Grummett, who’s always been good with both action and talking heads. 

 I’ve always had a soft spot for Chris Claremont, and I’m glad to see he’s in top form here.  If you enjoyed any portion of his original sixteen year run on Uncanny X-Men, here’s your chance to see where he would have taken the book if he had stayed.  There’s Action, Drama and Romance—the cornerstones of classic Claremont X-Men, forever! 

 All in all, the first issue is a darn good read and makes for a promising series.  It’s Lotsafun TM!

 -Daron “The Colonel” Jensen


Thanks to Daron, Marvel will finally get some love on my blog.  "The Colonel" enjoys his Marvel,  and god knows I don't have the same level of, let's call it, "enthusiasm."  Since many Amazing Fantasy customers enjoy Marvel comics and many of those customers have been reading and commenting on my blog,  I thought it only appropriate to give Marvel some good press here.  I know I do my share of Marvel bashing on here,  but it's really only some of their marketing strategies that I take issue with.  I do enjoy many of their characters.  Captain America, Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Nightcrawler, and Moon Knight, and the oh so sexy bad boy Namor, the Sub-Mariner, have all been favorite characters of mine at one time or another.  


  1. Lol, "lotsafun™". Nice review from The Colonel, and I am one of those that fondly remembers Chris at the top of his game, so I'm looking forward to checking this out at some point.

    Tell Daron his thoughts were appreciated, and thank you, for dragging them out of him, Lori. :)

  2. Oh God, 1991 or so is when a cetain someone in my family stopped collecting comics. Maybe she'll like this series then. I've been sorta weary about retcons, as they tend to suck.

  3. OK, so is this a limited or a continuing series? Is it to be considered a what if story then? Sure a good story is a good story and all, no matter what the continuity is. The reason I ask is because I'm kinda on the fence with X-men and have been for a long time. I dropped the book shortly after the Wolverine near wedding story and since then I haven't really cared for the path that the characters have gone. So much water has gone under the bridge since I read them that that there is not much left that I recognize. Example: perhaps my favorite x-man Nightcrawler is now pushing Christianity, and while I don't necessarily have an objection to that type of character, it wasn't part of the character from the beginning. It's like Ben Grimm being Jewish, it certainly makes sense with that character but it's hard to accept because it was added so much later. It seems like most of the X-men have had similar tweaks like this in the last twenty years and the characters by now have been watered down to serve the pallet of the 1 billion served.

    Is this really a book for old school X-men fans or will Marvel at some point pull the rug out from under us again? Ok, so things change, I'm over it, if it sells more books for Marvel and the new fans like the changes that's fine. But then Marvel does the unexpected and gives us The New Mutants book, which is the same old characters a little older with a story that's not too bad actually and some beautiful artwork; And then they follow that up with The X-men right where CC left off in 1991. A book that I might actually want to try. So what did we old timey fans do to deserve this? Ah well, maybe I should just shut up and enjoy it.