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Posts tagged “Gambit

All-New X-Factor #20 (Final Issue) Review

The final issue of the series is here, and here’s my All New X-Factor #20 review!

Okay, the issue opens with the team on the ship. It’ll be a couple of weeks before Polaris recovers, but she asks Warlock to try and comfort Danger after her realizing she has no soul, so to speak. While he and Cypher made up with one another, with a parting hit to seal the deal., it’s still a bit bitter. Warlock meets with her and tells her that he has a soul, or something inside of him that he cannot explain with words. Instead he shares it with her, and I think robot sex ensues.

While that’s going on, Polaris is instead dealing with a message from Quicksilver. He’s leaving the team for the Avengers Unity division and taking his daughter with him. Personally, I blame Scarlet Witch and would love to be there when he has words with her, but he states he’ll be there if she needs him.

On Serval side of things, Snow has a meeting with Ty Stone of Alchemax and continues to be a sort of corporate sleaze ball who wants his assistant in on the meeting to provide eye candy. This brings him into contact with Miguel O’hara, aka Spider-Man 2099, who recognize one another. As soon as Stone and his assistant are out of the room, secrets come out.

Harrison Snow, or Harry as Miguel calls him, came from the future in a Time Dilation accident with Barry, the man from the last issue. Naturally, an accident sent them both back. Harrison explains that the handgun he used last issue was a device to send him back to the future, however, Miguel explains that time is wonky because of Age of Ultron and thus he just killed the man and his wife as readily as if he had incinerated them.

Harrison then reveals he plans to take down Alchemax using mutants. He plans on recruiting them all, and then the Avengers, and then all the heroes under Serval’s banner. Then he’s going to sic them on Alchemax and obliterate it in five years. It’s ballsy, and he believes that it will lead to a golden age for mankind.

Given how cutthroat Alchemax is in the future, I’m kinda with him. That being said, absolute power corrupts absolutely. Anyway, the team returns just as Miguel leaves and the comic ends its run.

Okay, review time.

Well, it wraps up the series fairly well given the circumstances. While there are some inconsistencies, we can honestly say that X-Factor was probably the best X-Men series out at present. It has better pacing that Uncanny X-Men, the team actually accomplished something unlike the Uncanny Avengers, and it held more worth than All-New X-Men and all the damn Wolverine comics.

I’m still not a fan of the art work though, so the issue and series gets a 4 out of 5. I’d read a sequel.

 


All New X-Factor #19 Review

Okay, we’re at the end of the battle between the team and the goddess of the underworld. Read my All-New X-Factor #19 review!

At Serval industries, Harrison is speaking with the man whose daughter he had his team go out to bring her corpse back. Whatever reason they were out there, they want out now and Harrison agrees, but he begs them to let his team do what they were asked.

The team, now facing a goddess within a mortal vessel, is given the choice to kneel or die. Polaris has them kneel, so that she could figure out what was going on, but Sunfire screws that up and nearly gets munched until she intervenes and asks why the goddess chose now. The goddess says that in five years there will be a peace accord, and for some reason it has to stop that so it will kill the inhabitants of the old city and borrowed Elena’s body for that. Then she wipes the floor with them and decides to be on her way.

They get right back up and start hitting back, but Lorna gets taken out by plastic bullets and the goddess decides to just eat their souls. Danger, lacking a soul, proceeds to tear the goddess apart until it runs back to the underworld. If there was any doubt about why you should have a robot on the team, there’s your rebuttal.

Later, Polaris is recovering and the body had been returned. They conclude that it was merely coincidence that the terrorist had plastic bullets, but are curious as to what the goddess meant about being out of time. While Polaris congratulates Danger, she admits that she can’t feel good about it since she doesn’t have a soul and doesn’t feel real.

With Harrison, the couple has finally laid their daughter to rest. They want out, after doing whatever they were there to do, and it seems like Harrison is willing to let them leave. But he promptly kills them both as the comic ends.

Okay, review time….

The battle with the goddess was honestly expected. They’re not going to kill of the team just yet, after all. However, the real meat of the story is what happened in the end. We always knew Harrison was so shady he could shield you from the sun in the summer, but we never thought he could go to outright murder.

Gets a 4 out of 5, the deducted point coming from the art work. While it may normally be like that, I still don’t like it.


All-New X-Factor #18 Review

The aftermath of Axis is felt in All-New X-Factor. Read on my recap and review of this issue!

Our comic begins with Harrison telling the team about how his goddaughter’s corpse was taken from a funeral procession and into a series of tunnels. He wants them to retrieve her body so it can be laid to rest. Everyone is in agreement to get to work, which both Gambit and Quicksilver find odd since they never agree with each other on anything.

Meanwhile, Cypher apparently had sex with Danger, somehow. Honestly, I question if this was really consensual, but either way he begs her not to tell Warlock. True enough, this violates a number of things in the Bro Code.

The team assembles with Sunfire there to apologize for attacking them. Now that Axis is over the nuclear football had been returned to the president, and Polaris invites Sunfire on the mission. Quicksilver protests and then decides to stay with Luna at the base if he’s coming along. Along the way, the news comes out about Danger and Cypher, leading to Warlock being more than a little mad.

After they land, they venture into the tunnel where they find hieroglyphs and two men try and shoot them. They are quickly subdued before telling them they took the girl’s body because they want to use her for some kind of ritual, having guarded over her family line for thousands of years. As the comic ends the team arrives to see that the girl has been turned into an Avatar of Ammit.

Okay, review time…

This issue starts what may be the last arc of the series. I find that animosity between Sunfire and Quicksilver, one-sided as is, is a bit weird. The fact that Danger also slept with Cypher showcases her lack of empathy, while Warlock has a more emotional response since Cypher is his closest friend. Also, I do question just how consensual it was since she came in during the middle of the night… or the logistics of how it was possible.

Anyway, it gets a 3 out of 5.


All New X-Factor #17 Review

My review of All-New X-Factor #17 is out now! Read on!

The comic opens with Gambit remembering the time he, Sunfire, and Polaris were members of Apocalypse’s Four Housemen. It wasn’t a nice time, and now the three of them are in a fight over who gets the Nuclear Football. Sunfire and Longshot, inverted by AXIS, were sent here by the X-Men to take it, while the Serval crew would rather that not happen.

Sunfire then tries to set them on fire with a blast that Danger simply walked out of and slaps him before they have Warlock trap him in an airless sphere, meaning no flames. Round one to the Serval team….wait, didn’t he produce bio-oxygen or some BS to explain how he could breathe in space in Uncanny Avengers?

Anyway, Longshot tries to get past them but Quicksilver goes to stop him. That ends when he’s suddenly yanked into the sky by some invisible force, which is weird since he can’t fly. Oh yeah, and Sunfire escapes by burning up Warlock (so I was right on the bio-oxygen thing) and then melts Danger who was mad because she didn’t get a chance to bang him. It’s this type of thing the comic has devolved to.

Longshot gets in and takes out the guards, Dakota takes him out, and Sunfire stops her from finishing him off. After discussing how they plan on nuking the place after they get the Nuclear Football, Cypher leads them on a goose chase before using the teleporter to drop them off in Tokyo. As the comic ends we see that Pietro was being pulled up by Magneto who wants his help in stopping his insane sister again.

Okay, review time…

On the one hand, I believe this to be the last AXIS tie-in, which is a good thing. I’m tired of the event and Wanda already. Anyway, the art was… okay, no real complaints there, and it was the follow up to the tie-in. It gets a 3 out of 5 for not being too bad, but not really doing much.


All New X-Factor #16 Review (AXIS Tie-In)

Okay, we’re following up on the events of AXIS on the Serval Team in All-New X-Factor #16 and here’s my review!

The comic opens with the Sentinels attacking Serval fruitlessly in order to retrieve the nuclear football. Harrison entertains the thought of letting them into the barrier to prevent them from being affected by the Hate Plague but they’re on orders so it wouldn’t help. Lorna does point out that they will try to get in some way though, which is proven when they go and kidnap his wife.

Meanwhile Pietro is feeling bored watching with his daughter when Lorna comes up and asks him about what Wanda said about him spying on them. But asking I mean she slaps him hard enough to knock the speedster down and he points out they have bigger issues but explains why he quit the Avengers. She took more offense to that second-stringer line than the whole spying thing, but any further discussion is cut off when the Sentinel with Harrison wife gives him a minute to drop the shield before he crushes her, to which she tells the robot she’s screwed because he won’t do it.

He doesn’t as he can’t let them get the nuclear football so the team acts to bring the robots and/or the dome down. Doug gets it down before Pietro saves her but he gets hit and then Warlock gets taken out. Danger takes offense to this and turns their Sentinels onto one another until Longshot and Sunfire arrive as the comic ends.

Okay, review time.

Uh… we see some developments in regards to the team, like Danger going off when they hurt Warlock and Lorna confronting Pietro, but there’s something missing I feel. Maybe because they’re dragging it out longer than World War Hate.

Meh, a 4 out of 5.


All New X-Factor #11 Review

Okay, our story picks up after Gambit was “accidentally” left behind with Snow welcoming the team back and sending Georgia to the infirmary to get some medical treatment, with Quicksilver going to the hospital to get her mother before she can be used as a hostage and Polaris only then noticing a member of her team was missing.

Gambit is being tortured while naked. I’m assuming this was done for the remy fangirls, because leaving him some boxers would have been more deserving. Anyway, Memento Mori wants answers, Gambit doesn’t break until his mind is fried and the bad guy floats the idea that maybe him being left behind wasn’t an accident. He lets Snow’s name slip and Memento packs his men and tells them to get to moving, intent on retrieving Georgia and leveling the place.

Polaris is less than thrilled to be missing a member and notices Snow doesn’t seem too upset before calling for Quicksilver to swing back to the Mall to find him. But he’s got other problems as Memento has an airship on the way and shooting at him. Snow reveals that he didn’t buy only the X-Factor name, since he’s seen the number of time the Jean Grey School has needed to be rebuilt (burn!), but he also bought Layla Miller’s force-field glove and uses it to make the building impenetrable.

Both the bad guy and I will admit that was clever, but it does nothing for Gambit, who’s under the gun. He states it reminds him of his place in the world and it doesn’t matter if the trigger gets pulled or not, as long as Georgia is safe. Danger then appears as Georgia and gets the drop on Memento before tossing Gambit his coat and the fighting kicks off once again until he reveals he’s a walking bomb and knock them all down.

Georgia’s mom, Dakota, steps in and reveals that she’s responsible for him ending up like this since she practiced magic and didn’t harness the power correctly. She then tells her daughter farewell and causes them both to explode in a column of light, leaving Georgia alone and without any of her parents as the comic ends.

Okay, review time.

First off, I’m calling bullshit on the magic angle. Where was the foreshadowing? All this served to do was make the new girl even more of a woobie. Her adoptive father handed her over to Snow, he real father was a villain, and her mother was a sorceress who was killed off with her real father. It’s just all about hurting her as much as possible for the last two days, isn’t it?

Comic gets a 4 out of 5.


All-New X-Factor #10 Review

Well, after that fallout last issue I’m glad they’re addressing it a week later. So here’s my review of All New X-Factor 10!

The comic opens with Polaris dusting herself off along with her brother and Cypher. Somehow nobody, not even the middle-aged woman, was injured when Memento Mori basically dropped a house on them. Still, she calls Harrison Snow up and tells him to get the rest of their team over there so they can get to superheroing.

Georgina’s father proves himself to be a somewhat smart and reasonable villain in that he’s basically paid off her mother, after dropping a house on her and kidnapping her daughter, so she can buy a new house. He’s taken her to a mall and 5-star hotel he owns through legitimate means, which superheroes that care about collateral damage can’t simply run rampant through to get her back. Of course he picks up the idiot ball and becomes an asshole when he forces her to show him her power, which she uses to mummify his hand and escape.

Gambit, worried that Harrison learned about his little fling with his wife, is taken to the matter transporter room with Danger and Warlock. They join up with the rest and get to the mall just as the guards decide to tranquilize Georgina. Cypher and Warlock, who turns into a motorcycle, get her out of there just as Harrison learns from Linda about Gambit tapping his wife last night.

As the comic ends with them being teleported out while the rest of Memento Mori and his men close in, Gambit just so happens to get left behind and left to the villain’s mercy after talking trash.

Okay, review time…

Well, this issue was fun and informative. Although I have to say it’s kind of petty of Harrison to leave the man to die just because he inadvertently slept with his wife. He’s sleeping with Linda, so what’s the problem? You don’t throw away an asset like that…

Anyway, 5 out of 5.


All-New X-Factor #8 Review

Well, that was interesting last time. Now it’s time to see what’s going to happen to Doug after he was desiccated by the pie-loving young woman. This is my review of X-Factor #8.

The story picks up where it left off with Cypher a dried out husk of himself and the rest of the team stunned at how pie-girl is so disconnected from what she did it was like she didn’t know it was wrong. Danger breaks the tension by asking what sort of pie, which gets the ball rolling with Warlock ready to murder her as her father gets the door open with men and guns at the ready.

Polaris pretty much drags him inside, locks the rest out, and force him to admit he’s told his daughter a huge-ass lie. Turns out he’s kept her so locked out of the real world that she believes the majority of people in the world have powers and the few who didn’t worked with her father. Wow, I’m more amazed at the fact he managed to pull that sort of lie off for years than anything else.

Anyway , the police show up and they need her to fix Cypher, but like most mutants who didn’t get training she has very little idea on how to reverse her power but can try if she can get some water. Danger and Warlock clear a path while they make for the kitchen so she can try and reverse it while her father tells her he was just trying to protect her… to be fair, as far as bigots go he’s nowhere near the worst in having a mutant kid.

Rahne’s father straight-up beat and tried to kill her. Not saying its right, but it could have been worse.

In the kitchen she explains she normally drains moisture out of things, which she learned by killing her first kitten by accident, and her father started home-schooling her. She’s going to get as much moisture in her as she can and then put that into him the same way she took it out. Her father points out that it could possibly kill her and Gambit jacks him up and demands to know how could he rail against mutants knowing his daughter was one.

He states he didn’t know when she was born and that she was god’s punishment on him. Gambit points out that maybe the big man was trying to tell him something, but he reasons that maybe god was a dick and just wanted him to hate him as well. Mission accomplished there, but he doesn’t hate the girl since she’s his late wife’s legacy. Gambit must also be off his game, because he gets kicked off by Georgina’s dad and only his daughter telling him to let her try this and if it fails and she dies she’ll have a one-on-one talk with god about it gets him to settle down for a moment.

Once the moment passes Quicksilver takes him and sits him down elsewhere only for men with tracer bullets that would follow him to the ends of the earth to threaten opening fire on him. Never mind the fact that he could probably trap them in a steel box or knock their tracer mechanism out with a pipe or just hide behind a steel wall and let them shatter to pieces unless they’re made of adamantium. Fortunately Harrison Snow shows up out of nowhere to prevent even more ammo from being wasted and takes Scott to discuss this in private like they’re old friends. Quicksilver and the head bodyguard are just as confused as we are.

While Georgina succeeds in reviving Cypher, the police decide to try sniping them. Polaris hijacks their guns and gives them thirty seconds before she opens fire. Her father wouldn’t have given them even that, so they wisely decide to leave as Cypher offers to take Georgina to the JGS when Danger ruins the sales-pitch by pointing out they train to fight evil mutants, risk their lives, and die repeatedly.

She runs like any sane person would as Warlock basically confirm it. To be fair, Danger and Warlock aren’t lying. There are only a handful of X-Men who haven’t died and aren’t wallpaper yet. When her dad is in a meeting she uses her powers to bring the door crumbling down and we learn that he and Harrison Snow want her to go with him.

It’s damn heartbreaking as he tells her that he loved his daughter and when she became a mutant she was just some thing that replaced her. He can’t even face her as he says it while Snow is looking nonchalant about it. As the comic ends it’s made clear that Snow forced him to say it and he’s driven to near tears while alone….

Okay, review time.

Yeah… I’m starting to think Harrison might be evil. He’s taking the man’s daughter as a hostage (come on, even though they didn’t say it we all know that’s what it is). That being said, the fact that he knew where his team was and managed to get inside the locked-down building brings up questions.

Either way, he did bail them out of trouble that they had no business getting involved with. Like I said in my last review they broke a ton of laws that you can’t do when part of a corporate super-hero team and Harrison straight-up Mafia’d them out of trouble to probably save his own ass.

Other than that, I find myself somewhat sympathizing with the man. Don’t get me wrong, I hate bigots in Marvel and if he was a Purifier I would be rooting for someone to put him down. But he’s having his daughter taken away from him because of whatever dirt Snow has on him and the alternative would have somehow been worse. He gets some pity from me… only some, not a lot.

The fact that the comic could make me feel anything like that deserves a 4 out of 5 and only misses a perfect score because the artwork hurts my eyes.


All-New X-Factor #7 Review

This lackluster issue didn’t really do much for me, but I’ve already reviewed the last six issues so I may as well continue.

The story begins with the daughter of an anti-mutant bigot whining because she’s not allowed to leave home. I can understand that. Then daddy comes in to see her web-show and decides it’s time for them to go and his guard shoots the web-camera because he doesn’t know how to turn it off. He’s clearly not the brightest tool in the shed.

Meanwhile, at Serval, Snow is trying to have his side-chick, Linda, calm down after being confronted by his wife about their nightly trysts. He tells her that his wife is bluffing (I doubt it) and then meets with Lorna to ask about why they didn’t off the Magus. At the same time Danger is reading a book written by the bigot from before, Scott Drake, and Pietro is offended. They argue about politics of it when the book is a spy-thriller when it just so happens that Doug found that web-show of his daughter. Since Pietro has daddy issues and she clearly has some too, he decides to do something about it.

When they bring up the topic Lorna correctly points out that kidnapping is what they’re planning and that might not look so good for a super-hero team that’s corporate. It’s made apparent that they don’t really care and they manage to convince her to join in the kidnapping plan as Pietro gets called in to report to Havok.

He runs in and tells him about the Magus, and Havok asks why he didn’t take him down as well. Like Lorna, he states running a corporation isn’t evil…at first anyway. If the Magus is here illegally I’m sure they can contact SWORD. That or those superheroes who appeared in Scarlet Spider since the Midwest is severely lacking.

Then he ditches him to go flying with the others, while Gambit admits that while he’s focusing on the small scale of someone who needs help rather than the grand scale of things, if she wasn’t the daughter of a bigot he wouldn’t care. At least he’s honest.

They land and go knocking on his door and get warned to leave in five seconds or they’d get gunned down. That goes about as well as expected since the moment they open up the doors the corpses are revealed to be hard-light constructs while Pietro knocks them out. They meet up with Georgia, who it turns out is a fangirl.

They try to tell her they’re here to save her, she thinks she’s fine and wants to stay. Doug tries to tell her she should come with them and doesn’t let go when she tells him to. Apparently she’s a mutant or something and has the same power set as Wither because he ends up getting mummified and she acts all cool about it as the comic ends…

Okay, review time…

Let’s be real here, they were kidnapping her. Don’t get me wrong, rescuing abused children from their homes is always a good thing in comics…well, most times. But X-factor is supposed to be a superhero team, a corporate one nonetheless, but heroes. This was blatant kidnapping of the same vein of the Avengers in AvsX with Hope.

As much as I hate anti-mutant bigots, and may the Purifiers burn in hellfire, he hasn’t broken any laws. You kind of have to agree they stormed private property, assaulted his men, and then tried kidnapping his daughter. I expect this from villains. The fact that the girl was a mutant only came up after they broke in to take her.

It’s clear he’s keeping her locked away because as a bigot he can’t have his daughter being a mutant coming out. Doesn’t help that he probably pissed of f the X-Men by being a bigot, since they usually deal with mutants who need help. His options were limited and swallowing humble pie is never easy, but consider that I’ve seen worse fathers I have to say he’s not exactly doing anything wrong.

Now, until the next issue makes some things clear, I have to say X-Factor were in the wrong. Either way, the issue gets a 3 out of 5.


All-New X-Factor #5 Review

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Out of one murder attempt by a future member and into another as All-New X-Factor #5 picks up shortly after the end of the previous issue. This is my review of it.

This time around the story opens with Gambit waking up to find a woman in his room while he’s naked beneath the sheets. While this probably wouldn’t be uncommon for him, he didn’t invite Danger to bed last night so he’s confused as hell when he finds her there. She claims that his kiss reset some of her functions, but she needs more interaction to become whole. Better than nothing as an excuse to why kissing her worked I supposed.

It seems that Gambit isn’t the only one who woke with a pretty woman in his room. Harrison Snow, like all married but corrupt CEOs, is having an affair with Linda from his company. Their post-coitus talk is of a new player on the computer market that Harrison wants to buy out and he’s having a meeting with him later on. As he leaves out, he tells her to be out by the time his wife gets back from her business trip and then goes about his day with a swagger in his step.

Quicksilver and Polaris are already up, sharing breakfast and exchanging obscure trivia when Gambit tells them Danger is in his room. Polaris brings up the possibility that she wants him sexually, and Quicksilver sees nothing wrong with it. Then again, their sister married Vision and then magic’d up some kids so…

Anyway, Harrison pops by to tell them he wants them at the meeting and Quicksilver runs out to tell Havok, who somehow comes out acting like even more of a sell-out asshole than normal. He’s like one of those damn stalkers who have a PI following your every step. Quicksilver makes it back to Serval before they think he’s done in the bathroom, smooth as silk, only for Danger to sense his vitals and know he’s been running, but he gets out of it by lying. Same goes for Linda when Danger notes that she has Harrsion’s DNA on her in a way that only comes from being intimate with one another.

The meeting takes two turns, the first being the guy who Harrison planned to buy out turned to be The Magus, an enemy leader of an alien race. Danger discovers this by putting her hand through his chest, and Polaris gives its metallic butt a one-way trip out of the building. The second is when Warlock shows up defending his father, before the two of them split.

I’m sure they didn’t wake up planning to get into a brawl, but now that they were in it they were going to get some answers. And so, as the comic ends, Polaris suggests they pay a little visit to Doug Ramsey aka Cypher of the X-Men, aka the guy who can talk to anything and read any language.

A bit more crude humor-wise, but character development is always welcomed. I’ll give it a 4 out of 5.

 


All-New X-Factor #4 Review

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Its comic book day today and thus it’s also time for my reviews, with the first of the day being All-New X-Factor #4.

The comic picks up where we last left off, with Danger being freed and subsequently deciding to go the usual evil robot route of killing everyone present after she’s dealt with her captor. Gambit tries to reason with her, but she claims she doesn’t know who he is and blasts him with a rocket punch before looking to find Nil gone. He’s fleeing the scene, passing by Jean-Luc as the building explodes and leaves the guy to the mercy of the angry robot.

Gambit intervenes to save Jean-Luc, while Quicksilver saves him. Danger then catches up to Nil, with it being revealed he took her memory from her and offers to give them back. She decides to go without them as long as she gets to kill him, but Quicksilver once again intervenes to save the guy and Danger decides to take off the kid gloves by generating Hard-Light holograms to trick Quicksilver into running off of a cliff.

Lorna stops their fall by levitating them and gives Danger one opportunity to surrender, which she refuses. The mistress of magnetism then tears her apart, causing an argument with Gambit since she and he have a difference of opinion on the robot that was trying to kill them. That ends when Danger turns out to have inhabited their plane, which is something that Gambit should have remembered she could do earlier, and opens fire on them.

While Lorna stops the plane, Gambit faces off against a construct of her and tries to reason with her again on the belief that there is still a part of her that remembers their bond. That’s tested when Danger blows apart the escape ship Nil was boarding, subdues Lorna by distracting her with an image of her father rocking his new solo series outfit, and Gambit arrives to stop her from killing the 150 year old technomancer by following Disney’s mandate and kissing her.

It worked, of course. Danger calmed down and they gave her memories back to her. Then the comic ended with Gambit asking her to join X-Factor since she had nowhere to go, much to Lorna’s displeasure.

Okay, review time.

I can’t lie. I didn’t really like how the comic issue was resolved. In the first place, the “Kissing cures amnesia’” thing is really played out. They could have done a better job with it. Then again, this was basically an excuse plot so that they could add her to the roster and at least it ended quickly.

Secondly, Danger kept putting off killing them to get to Nil when it would have been in her best interest to simply kill them and go about her way. That’s poorly done, unless they justify it by her programming hindering her from doing so or at least show that she had fragments of memories whenever it came up. If the villains aren’t going to actually kill off the characters, or make a solid attempt, then they shouldn’t say so.

In the end, I can only give this an average score of 3 out of 5.


All New X-Factor #3 Review

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The latest entry in the newest iteration of the X-Factor series is out now and I’m here to review it, no strings attached and my personal opinions abound. So, let’s get straight into it.

The story opens with Havok, brother of Cyclops and figurehead of the failure of a team that is the Avengers Unity squad, playing pool in a bar and getting briefed on Serval and the X-Factor team by his man on the inside. Yeah, no one is really surprised that it’s Quicksilver, what with Gambit pegging him from the moment he walked into Serval., but let’s talk about Havok. Now, if there is one person I dislike more than Wolverine and Captain America whenever they show up in an X-Men book, it’s this sellout right here.

First off, he left Polaris at her wedding for the nurse he was psychically dating while in a coma with the help of her mutant son. Second off, wasn’t he flirting to high-heaven with Wasp in Uncanny Avengers? They have a child together and are married in the upcoming arc, which I know will be retconned soon enough since Cap got disfigured by acid and Marvel can’t have that, but still. Now he claims he wants Quicksilver looking out for her because she’s his girlfriend and she’s nuts, and he uses these exact terms in the same page.

Quicksilver wisely points out that she has no reason to trust him well enough to serve as a mole and she tried to shoot him, but she was drunk and their whole family has issues like…well, every major character in these books. Wolverine kills his kids, the Summers brothers are currently on the opposite sides of the law and don’t get me started on their extended families, do I need to cover anymore? For that reason Havok’s claim that she’ll trust him because they’re blood rings hollow as hell. They wrap it up with Havok also being a deadbeat and Quicksilver saying everyone hates him, which he tends to bring on himself and I think Finesse likes him as a mentor.

We then skip to Serval, aka Google, and learn that Harrison Snow had implanted a nanotech camera in Polaris’ eye while she was sleeping so he sees what she sees. Yes, he violates her privacy like it was a Tuesday for him, but he’s big business. It was probably in her contract under the terms no one reads.  Anyway, he learns at that moment they’ve been hacked from the PR head and decides to give his new team a call.

Two members of the team, Polaris and Gambit, are in his new room in the building and playing with his cats that Mystique gave him when Iceman decided to freeze the world over after corralling his ex-girlfriends into a snow cave for their safety, his ice clones claim, in Astonishing X-Men…including Polaris. Anyway, one cat scratches her and she flips out and gets ready to deal with it violently until Gambit snaps her out of it. Okay, maybe she isn’t a paragon of good mental health but I refuse to say Havok was right.

Snow pops up then and takes them down to their server room, where the guy running the place reveals they are being hacked and he knows the location for their team to go deal with it. Gambit notes he’s screwed as the place is the headquarters of his Thieves’ Guild even though it doesn’t pop up on the map. So he and Polaris suit up as Quicksilver arrives (with Gambit correctly claiming he was updating the Avengers about them) and take their shiny new jet out for a spin after it beams them up.

Meanwhile Snow goes to confront last arc’s villain of the week, Hoffman, and recruits him after illegally detaining him. He still has his mutant powers, but his DNA reads human, so naturally the megacorp wants him to work for them. Hoffman signs up when he learns they get benefits, which A.I.M doesn’t I suppose. Must be because they keep getting blown up or attacked…

As the team arrives on location, Gambit come clean that he knows who’s responsible despite the fact that he’s not involved in this one. One of his members is Nil, a technomancer. He uses magic to control computers and such…really, magic for that?  Anyway, Nil confesses he was only able to get into Serval by using a new medium for his powers.

It’s Danger, who helped spring Cyclops from prison and hates being locked up and controlled more than anything. So naturally when Polaris springs her she’s too pissed to think about anything but killing everything. Cue fight next issue before she joins the team.

Okay, so while it isn’t an action-based issue it does move the plot along and reveals several key things while introducing a new team member. We learn that Serval is basically any big corporation in Marvel like Roxxon or Alchemax or Oscorp and we learn Quicksilver is a spy, but no real shocker there until his sister finds out and tries to kill him again.

So I’m giving it a 4 out of 5 because the art work still isn’t doing it for me and calling it a review.


All New X-Factor #1-2 Review

Okay, I feel that I need to expand my horizons beyond the big names of Cyclops, Emma Frost, and Wolverine (not a fan of the guy lately). So I’ve decided, after reading the first two chapters of the fourth iteration of X-Factor going under the “Original” name of All-New X-Factor, to start reviewing this series. This review in particular will encompass Issues# 1 -2, which features Gambit, Polaris, and Quicksilver undergoing their first outing as part of the new X-Factor, which is now a corporate superhero team.

So let’s get to it with Issue #1, which opens with two scientists, the one named Hoffman being the important one, giving themselves pats on the back for a good and hard day’s work of torturing some mutant in the name of science. This is the Marvel Universe so that’s expected, but Hoffman seems even more douche-baggish with the sincere way he smiles as he says it’s for the greater good and then goes to get an espresso from Starbucks. That tells you two things, the first of which is that this is normal behavior that he does daily and the second is that he honestly believes what he says. But more on him later as the scene changes to Gambit.

Being one of the premiere thieves of the Marvel Universe, he’s taking to his role to liberate a statue locked into place with a mystic spell after navigating a bunch of laser alarms while hanging from the ceiling. It’s once he gets it that he finds that Wolverine is there and that the owner knew he had tried robbing him since he tripped an alarm made by Tony Stark, which must’ve hurt his ego as much as Logan talking down to him like a child and revealing he knows Gambit is running the Thieves’ Guild. Now, despite his condescending tone Wolverine has a point in that it poses no immediate threat and he is stealing…which is wrong I suppose.

But, if you’ve read Cable and the X-Force, Colossus and Domino successfully did the same with a Hell-hole device that was inside of a secure bank lock-box after releasing demonic hordes. Why these apocalyptic things are even left in one piece escapes me, but I’m with Gambit in that it would be better if the thing disappeared. After all, if some ancient sorcerer comes from three thousand years in the past and knows the spell to activate it, they’re screwed. And since this is the Marvel Universe that will probably happen in a later arc.

After getting dressed down by Wolverine, Gambit goes to a bar to unwind. Said unwinding involves beating the hell out of a bunch of guys saying New Orleans had Hurricane Katrina coming a few years back. We don’t blame him for the ass-kicking in that case, but before he can get another drink Polaris comes up to him and tells him to get a coffee to sober up so they can talk business. When he explains that Wolverine told him to go straight and narrow if he wants to stay at the school and remain a member of the X-Men (which I will point out has nothing to do with one another given the sheer amount of crap they get into illegal or otherwise) she asks him to take a trip with her to Virginia.

While on the private jet she explains she’s working with Serval Industries, a rising company that specializes in electronics and such. There’s a minor incident when someone launches a missile at the jet, but Polaris is the Mistress of Magnetism for a reason and it goes boom with a snap of her fingers. She then explains that Serval is basically Marvel’s version of Google and they have enemies, but since they help people she’s working for them as a member of their new corporate team, X-Factor, the name for which was bought from the previous owner Jamie Madrox (Multiple Man) by Harrison Snow, the CEO of Serval, at Linda Kwan’s insistence as their PR person.

Now, this guy is smooth as silk but gives you that greasy feeling that Gambit picks up on and asks flat out if he’s evil. He laughs, not really denying it, but he wants Gambit on the team because Polaris recommended him. He then reveals Quicksilver, Polaris’ half-brother, wanted to join to look after her upon learning they got Polaris out of jail after she tried to shoot him and trashed a bar while drunk. Yeah, that doesn’t go over well.

We can clearly see that Quicksilver isn’t the most wanted person around by Polaris or Gambit, with one claiming he’s spying on them for the Avengers, which he denies (although the preview for issue #3 says otherwise) and the other thinking he’s evil, which he denies again. But ultimately Polaris decides to give him a chance. And it’s just in time as Harrison sends them on their first mission to deal with Hoffman, who it turns out is a biologist who has been employed by some A.I.M looking dudes and he wants them to go and do what they do best when it comes to heroes and shady organizations.

So they put on some snazzy outfits and go in destroying stuff to rescue the kidnapped victims. Gambit doesn’t really buy the timing and the excuse Harrison gave him for having them do this, but he’s done worse for less and gives it a go. The team arrives just as Hoffman is about to vivisect Fatale and he is ecstatic at more mutants arriving since they would be more test subjects.

So ends Issue #1.

Going straight into Issue #2, it picks up with Hoffman going to field test his research against the intruding mutants and unlocks a doorway to two mutants who are locked up in giant pods and clearly dislike the man, what with the torture and all. It then skips to our heroes being split apart and Polaris deciding to just trash the place in a fit of rage until she ends up where Fatale is. Gambit somehow escapes the standard Fall-into-Furnace trap with a well-placed charged card only to find himself at gun point. Quicksilver shows up about then and takes their guns away, but the chumps prove to be smarter than the average mooks as they have wrist mounted spares built into their bracelets. It doesn’t help as Quicksilver dodges the bullets and Gambit puts them down with another charged card.

On the subject of Polaris, she’s with Fatale who reveals Quicksilver gave her and the other two who were captured their powers back after M-Day but turned them into living bombs. The only reason they didn’t blow up was because they were frozen in time in another dimension and then pulled out of it by Hoffman, who siphoned off the excess energy. We then cut to Hoffman following up on that and getting ready to use that energy for himself to turn into an energy monster.

Cue the boss fight where Hoffman claims the mutants didn’t know the potential of their abilities or how to manipulate them and then claims that it was because of this that they let the world treat them like dirt and he can do it so much better than they can. Yet, for all that bragging, Gambit and Quicksilver put him down with an charged card inside his ear in less than five pages without a scratch. Pathetic.

Naturally the mutants he tortured want to finish him after he goes night-night, but they turn their hatred towards Quicksilver and make it clear they will get even for what he did to him one day. But that’s a story for another day as the comic ends.

Okay, review time.

Now art-wise I’ve seen better and it’s just not my style how the artist has drawn the series, but it’s still good enough for me to understand what’s going on. Plot-wise, it’s a good opening and doesn’t take forever like some other series that will remain nameless. On the minor characters, Hoffman is an affably evil douche who you find charming and want to throttle at the same time, Harrison is clearly shady but he’s big business so that comes with the territory, and it’s pretty clear Fatale, Abyss, and Reaper have a bone to pick with Quicksilver and will show up later as antagonists. The major characters interact with one another in an interesting manner, with Gambit and Polaris being rather close while no one really likes Quicksilver, but they do work well enough for a first mission with no real hiccups.

So I give both issues a 4 out of 5, as it is interesting but the artwork leaves a lot to be desired.