Wolverine #55


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Wolverine #55


  • Words: Jeph Loeb
  • Art: Simone Bianchi
  • Inks: Simone Bianchi & Andrea Silvestri
  • Colors: Simone Perruzi & Frank D'Armata
  • Story Title: Evolution Part 6, Quod Sum Eris
  • Publisher: Marvel Comics
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Jul 25, 2007

Here it is, the theoretically last issue ever of Wolverine fighting Sabretooth. How does it all end? Don’t worry - a spoiler-free review!

I won’t give anything away prior to this issue; if you’ve read through to issue #54, then you’ll get no surprises here. The story thus far: all lupine-related mutants of Marveldom have banded together to locate Sabretooth within the dingy ol’ (it gets around) Weapon X compound in Canada, but what they find within is a Sabretooth feral and wild as Logan was once upon a Barry Windsor-Smith time. With Feral (the character, with a capital "F," not to be too confusing) dead at Creed’s hands and Thornn, Sasquatch, and Wolfsbane down for the count due to Wild Child’s interference, its down to Logan to take out his arch-nemesis once and for all.

So…ignoring the how it all ends, is it a good ending? A worthwhile finale to an ages-old animosity? Yes. It is. But it isn’t spectacular, and that’s a damn shame. It isn’t the big time knock-down blood-soaked battle to end all blood-soaked battles that an ultimate confrontation should be. It ends with a poignant moment, though, one that - regardless of its lack of Grand Guignol - is truly fitting for the two characters in question.

Looking back at Evolution, I’m happy overall with what Loeb’s given to fans, understanding that the story is more about its Origins-related revelations than about having a final battle between Logan and Creed. And I suppose that’s the one, major critique of the tale: it relied too heavily on dream-sequences and exploring murky mind-altering conspiracies than with the actual last brou-ha-ha between two anti-icons. Daniel Way’s Origins could have effortlessly dealt with all of the more plot-heavy content, leaving Loeb more space with which to offer up a memorable end, but instead we get what amounts to a very beautiful, certainly entertaining, but in retrospect, just a side-story to a larger epic of some other Wolverine title. And that’s just not the way to send a fan-favorite villain to the grave.

Did I say it was beautiful, though? Oh, hell yes, I did: Simone Bianchi, along with Andrea Silvestri, Simone Peruzzi, and Frank D’Armata, put out one of the most lavish Wolverine tales in a long, long while. This thing is visually on par with Heavy Metal, it looks like a European graphic novel and that translates as some of the best in the world no matter the language. Sabretooth and Wild Child were terrifying under his pencil-stroke, the dream sequences eerie, and Wolverine an animal with the eyes of a man - pretty much what all these things should have been.

So the end of an effective, and affecting, if largely flawed story. It’ll be interesting to see how this one ties into Jenkin’s Origin as well as Way’s Origins, though that’s in Way’s hands now.

A final observance, as with Wolverine: The End, and Enemy of the State, I’m continually perplexed that writers don’t let Logan loose, allow him to truly be the dangerous killing machine their scripts ad nauseam draft him as being. I looked forward to a big bloody six-part battle with Sabretooth, but instead we got three-quarters dream sequences, flashbacks, and bizarre, unnecessary stand-offs with Cyclops (sorry, I hated that scene). The ending doesn’t leave a clear way for Sabretooth to return, but the story reminded me of Death and the Maidens, the supposedly final R’as al Ghul yarn, and - whoops! - the Demon returns in a few months thanks to Grant Morrison. So I’m not over-worrying this. Hell, even Wolverine’s origin can be revamped given time, if this one turns out to suck. It’s been done before.

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