Hunt For Wolverine: Claws Of A Killer #4 Review

by Charles Martin on August 15, 2018

Hunt For Wolverine: Claws Of A Killer #4 Review
Writer: Mariko Tamaki
Pencillers: Butch Guice & Mack Chater
Inkers: Cam Smith & Mack Chater
Colourist: Jordan Boyd
Letterer: Joe Sabino
Publisher: Marvel Comics

Claws of a Killer is over. The promise of the first issue went up in smoke. What we got instead of a compelling anti-hero character study was three very decompressed issues of generic zombie fighting. The creators made the tone super-bleak, but that's a poor selling point without better hooks to draw the reader in.

Because I am convinced this series was a waste of time and money, I'm going to spoil the heck out of the conclusion. These next paragraphs should give you all the insight you need to move on to Dead Ends, the next Hunt for Wolverine miniseries. 

SPOILERS BELOW! Skip if you still want to read Claws of a Killer!

The Soteira organization takes custody of Daken's dead body. Sabretooth and Deathstrike escape with some wear and tear. We don't know whether or not they've gotten their healing factors back. 

The closest this book gets to interesting is when it hands its anti-heroes a significant loss. Not only did they get Daken killed (cf. All-New Wolverine, short-term death is Daken's Thing now), they draw very mistaken conclusions about the Soteira organization. They think it has nothing to do with Wolverine. That means they're due for some about-facing as the Hunt continues, I guess. 

Spoilers end here!

While I'm taking this series as a total write-off, I don't bear much ill will toward the creative team. This was just spectacularly the wrong project for their strengths. After issue #1, there was little call for Mariko Tamaki's insightful dialogue skills. Butch Guice's realistic portraiture was wasted on big noisy zombie fights. 

My weirdest takeaway? I'd kinda like to see Ms. Tamaki and Mr. Guice collaborate on something gritty but more cerebral and character-focused. I think they'd be a great team for a Jessica Jones comic. 

(I'm not saying that Kelly Thompson's current digital JJ title needs replacing, though.)

With a breezy "whoosh" of decompression, Claws of a Killer whispers to a close with more gritty but generic zombie fighting. This series suffered from a fundamental mismatch between creative talent and intent. Mariko Tamaki and Butch Guice are great creators. There's nothing wrong with "three violent anti-heroes chop up zombies" as a premise for a miniseries. That premise and these creators combine like oil and water, though. It goes down in our logbook as one strong issue followed by three extremely skippable ones.

Our Score:


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Charles Martin's picture
Petty complaint corner: I didn't care for this issue casting "random suburban mom who uses her kids' extracurriculars as an excuse not to hit the gym" as Deathstrike.