Young Jean Grey and Scott Summers are on the run, intent on staying in the present despite the risks their presence poses to the space time continuum. On their tail are not only the X-Men of the present, but strangers claiming to be X-Men from the future. Among them is a man claiming to be the grandson of Charles Xavier. And unknown to the runaway teens is a figure who would surely rock them to the core. With seemingly everyone out to catch them, who can they turn to in their time of need?
Brian Wood takes over writing this chapter of the Battle of the Atom story and I have to say he does a pretty darn good job of writing an issue that is consistent with what Brian Michael Bendis has established thus far. How he writes past Jean and Scott throughout has been very well constructed, at certain points better than Bendis even. At the same time, he still manages to work in situations involving the team of X-Men he writes, particularly how they are still not on the same page as when Rachel Grey and present-day Kitty Pryde have trouble accepting what is happening and how things are being handle. While Jubilee gets very little in regards to presence in the book, she does provide an absolutely fun little comedy moment with past Iceman and Beast. I will concede, though, that no matter how good the issue overall is, it does interrupt the flow of the book by having to tie in with the big crossover event.
David Lopez continues to work his way into being a good artist for the series. He manages to not only keep artistic consistency between the issues he’s illustrated thus far, but also with how the Battle of the Atom story is being drawn. I really like the way he draws Jean and Scott when they get distracted from their running to sheepishly crush on one another, particularly in a scene where they’re changing clothes. There are some fun facial expressions he also throws in, like young Iceman’s horror when Jubilee finds some use for him or the one Wolverine pulls when he’s suddenly being scolded by present-day Kitty. Lopez is helped by Cam Smith on inks and Laura Martin on colors, the latter doing some wonderful work in adding depth and definition. The art is certainly not at the level of Olivier Coipel or Stuart Immonen, but Lopez and his team get the job done.
I will admit that on the one hand, this is the weakest issue of the series as it has to cater to the big crossover event as opposed to continuing on its own. On the other hand, it’s a great chapter in Battle of the Atom and written rather well by Brian Wood. Add some very nice illustrations by David Lopez and his team and you got an excellent book that is worth picking up. Granted one has to be invested in Battle of the Atom to follow what is going on, but it is nonetheless worthy of a high recommendation.
Where do you stand of the issue of how to deal with the original five and their presence in the present? Comment below and follow me on Twitter @LordAkiyama.