Comic Review: X-Men Legacy #9
Writer: Simon Spurrier
Penciller: Tan Eng Huat
Inker: Craig Yeung
Colourist: Jose Villarubia
Letterer: Virtual Calligraphy’s Cory Petit
Previously, in X-Men Legacy: The combined effort of David and Ruth was enough to defeat Ruth’s insane brother Luca, whose interference with Ruth’s powers have lead to her odd speech patterns and lack of control of her mutant abilities. The experience allowed David and Ruth to grow closer together, and a budding relationship has blossomed. Bolstered by Ruth’s faith in him, David’s control over his mental powers grows – even more reason for him to enjoy her company.
David has decided that he will no longer be reactive towards the threats that the mutant world faces, and instead will seek out problems before they reach the X-Men’s radar and nip them in the bud. This has lead to him infiltrating a mutant hating cult, as well as dealing with a mutant whose power involves taking credit for everything, even if it’s not his fault. Alongside this new quest, David has taken to trying to woo Ruth with psychic dates, and seems to be making progress.
If you’ve not read Watchmen, or are at least familiar with the more pop culture relevance of its plot points, then some of the humour in this issue will be lost on you. This issue has David and Ruth on their third date, on the moon, which draws some obvious parallels and even finds time for a ‘I did it 35 minutes ago’ moment later on too. Like last issue, most of this one is a speculative look forward at a potential mutant threat, but plays out slightly differently than before – with a bit of a domestic dispute to finish it all off too. Despite the humour, there are some very serious overtones in this issue too with some quite violent (theoretical) deaths. The mix of tones would be oddly out of place, had this book not already made itself famous for being curveballs, as I’ve said.
Next issue begins our second major arc, interestingly titled Invasive Exotics, which is supposed to naturally grow out of the end of this series of done-in-ones. I like the fact that this series is able to change the pacing a little, as opposed to lots of larger arcs, or lots of shorter ones, like other series tend to do. It’s another thing that makes it stand out among the other titles today, especially considering the high quality that Marvel NOW! has been producing.
For the first time, I’ve noticed that Tan Eng Huat really, really likes crosshatching. Whenever there’s a close-up of David or Ruth in this issue, there are some weird lines around their faces. I’m guessing that it’s meant to suggest shape and definition, but instead it just looks like someone’s scribbled on them. Huat’s style has always been a little odd, but it works for this series because it’s just as quirky as the storyline – it’s just a bit strange that it’s taken me nine issues to notice something that’s probably been obvious since the beginning. Has anyone else noticed this?
It’s difficult to review this book without feeling like I’m repeating myself (I’m sure that previous sentence has been in every review of this book since issue #2), but it’s because the sentiments remain true. This book is always a curveball; I can never tell whether the issue I’m going to read is going to swerve one way or another, and once the path that it takes has been plotted, it’s always something completely unpredictable that I would never have thought of. Despite some odd scribbly bits in the artwork, this is another solid issue in the series.
GO Rating: 3.5/5