Extraordinary X-Men #14

by Héctor A on September 28, 2016

Writer: Jeff Lemire
Artist: Víctor Ibañez
Color Artist: Jay David Ramos
Letterer: Joe Caramagna
Publisher: Marvel

This week on Extraordinary X-Men: After beating up some Akkaba goons, Nightcrawler and Iceman find Colossus pleading for help. OR DO THEY??? Meanwhile, Storm and Magik go deeper into uh.. the magical demon realms searching for Sapna, Magik's protege.


I have to say, after Apocalypse Wars I was feeling pretty despondent about this series but with the start of a new arc last month I'm more optimistic about it. It took a whole entire year worth of issues but this has finally started clicking for me. This is in large part due to Victor Ibañez's great art. A total opposite of Humberto Ramos, Ibañez's work is way more photorealistic and this is especially notable in the way he draws faces. Each one of his characters looks like a real person and completely different from one another. Jay David Ramos also does fine work with his coloring here. Him and Ibañez manage to make skinny Apocalypse even scarier than he was before.


Throughout the first 12 issues Lemire grossly mishandled some his cast but it seems that he has finally figured out how to write these characters. Both Nightcrawler and Forge get really good moments on this issue. And Lemire brings back the group of a characters that starred in Extraordinary X-Men #9. That issue was a breathe of fresh air, so I'm glad we're going to see more of them. It seems like this comic has finally struck the balance needed to service all its plot threads.


It's also astonishing how much better the pacing on this arc has been compared to Apocalypse Wars. The jumping between the scenes following Bobby and Kurt's search for Colossus and the ones featuring Illyana and Ororo's search for Sapna works. But Lemire still takes a couple pages to catch up with the X-Men left back at X-Haven. The issue ends with a strong cliffhanger, the structure of this arc has been more rigid than on previous ones and that benefits the series.


My one gripe is with how Piotr is getting put through the wringer once again, Colossus is one of the most tortured characters in recent Marvel history and that's not something inherent to his character. I have to admit that he's one of my favorite characters, so I do wish someone wrote a more light-hearted take on him but I'm not too mad at anyone over this arc.


Between Ibañez's art and Lemire's improved handle on his X-Men, reading the past 2 issues of this series has been very refreshing. I hadn't enjoyed every part of an X-book this much in a while. It took a while but it seems like Extraordinary X-Men is finally taking off.

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