by Lindsay Young, CMRO Contributing Writer
Wolverine: First Class
Written by Fred Van Lente, Art by Andrea Divito
Published: August 2008
Besides being yet another introduction to the Xavier School for Gifted Youngsters (which, despite how many I’ve read, I never really mind reading again), this issue features the team-up of Wolverine and a very green Kitty Pryde on the latter’s first ever mission. Professor X sends them off to locate and recruit another mutant, which of course results in chaos, action, and Wolverine’s general badassery.
The team up is ridiculously charming, with that old classic pairing of the gruff older man and the cute, bubbly teenager. Both Kitty and Logan are endearing in their own ways, and when they’re thrown together, it’s gratifying to see two characters respond to situations in complete opposite ways. I have a soft spot for Wolverine as a begrudging teacher, too.
That’s really the strength of the issue–not only is the storyline interesting, but the two characters involved, as well as the beginnings of their relationship, are even more so! I’d follow these two through any titles and read about their adventures together any time. The issue does such a lovely job setting up this–frankly–lovely relationship that it succeeds not only in telling a decent mission story, but a damn good job making these characters feel real, endearing, and complex in only a single issue.
In terms of the art, I really like the character designs and expressions here, although the poses don’t always feel natural. There are also panels where the layout of speech bubbles obscures characters faces, or else crowds the action. The art ends up being very hit or miss, but there’s more good than bad. The issue is also helped along by being very well-paced, allotting just enough time to action, humour, character-building and plot conflict.
Overall, I loved this first issue, and it reminds me why I love X-Men.