By Brian K. Vaughan (writer), Eduardo Risso (art), Dean White (colors)
If it were anyone other than Brian K. Vaughan writing this book, I probably would have skipped it. Wolverine is just in too many comic books each month. When I saw this book solicited, I thought, “Do we really need another one of these?” In fact, I didn’t even order it. But there I was, at the comic store yesterday, and this book was yelling my name. Begrudgingly, I decided to give it a shot.
Vaughan puts Logan back in familiar territory: Japan. If you skim through the book, you might think this is just a call out to Frank Miller’s old mini-series from the 1980s. Don’t worry, it’s not. The story takes place during World War II where Logan and a U.S. solider are held captive in a P.O.W. camp. Teaming up, the two escape their jailers and make their way through the rural Japanese countryside. When they startle a local woman, the U.S. soldier moves in the for the kill.
Logan and the man nearly get into a scuffle over whether the woman should live or die. Eventually, the two men go their separate ways with Logan escorting the woman home safely. What begins from there is another typical, and somewhat forced Wolverine romance. And in typical Wolverine fashion, this romance is destined for disaster (I’m not going to tell you why).
While the plot devices may seem familiar and even tired, what makes this story work is its setting. I don’t mean just being in Japan, but the actual time it takes place during World War II. Vaughan’s a good writer, and boy does he know how to write cliffhangers. I trust him enough that this issue is all set up and we’re going to get to the heart of the story next issue. Eduardo Risso’s cover is awful. Seriously, I don’t like it. It’s one of the reasons why I didn’t order this comic in the first place. Thankfully, the interior art is completely different – his art along with Dean White’s watercolors are gorgeous. Plucking down $3.99 for this, my initial thought was, “This had better be good.” Thankfully, it actually is. Not sure if the higher paper quality and cardstock cover justifies the price, though. (Grade: B)
– J. Montes
A Second Opinion
I agree and disagree with Jason on this one. I wouldn’t have picked this up if it were written by anyone other than Vaughan. I haven’t read previous Wolverine stories in Japan, so maybe I’m lost somehow.
I don’t really want to see a romantic story in an action series, and probably this is why they released this comic as “Logan”, the man, not the hero or the mutant. I’ve also seen this story many times; Vaughan must be working hard on Lost and probably didn’t put much effort into it. By the end of the story this woman will perish by either Warren or from the fires of war. Boring. But I’m going to keep reading. You can’t have all hits. I guess. (Grade: D)