By Duane Swierczynski (Writer) and Ariel Olivetti (Artist)

Some Thoughts Before The Review: Messiah War got off to a solid start last week despite the fact that half of chapter one was spent on recapping the past. Now, with the pieces in place and the main players introduced into the event, I look forward to where the Messiah Complex sequel will go next. Hopefully, it’s somewhere good.

The Story: Much like the first chapter, the second part of Messiah War spends a lot of time going over past events. Only this time, the past events offer up information that’s new, regardless of whether or not the reader has been following X-Force and/or Cable. What that means is that Cable #13 reveals just what future-Deadpool has been up to all these years. Also, the issue reveals how the present future came to be and what is up with the partnership between Stryfe and Bishop.

What’s Good: The Messiah War story continues to hold quite a bit of potential. Thanks to the funny segment featuring Deadpool and the bits of effective narration from Bishop, it’s possible to come up with a fairly clear picture of what type of future the characters are operating in and how it came to be that way. In other words, with the set-up hopefully finally out of the way, it seems as though the X-event can finally start moving forward comfortably.

What’s Not So Good: In my review of the Messiah War one-shot, I expressed concern over how the event would fare in the hands of the Cable creative team. As it turns out, Cable #13 proves that my concern was more than justified. And Duane Swierczynski and Ariel Olivetti are both at fault.

With the exception of how Stryfe is written, Duane Swierczynski does a pretty poor job of handling his series’ guest stars. Deadpool comes off way too strong (his comic fan “in jokes” are more annoying than funny), Wolverine’s dialogue is at times, atrocious (asshat?! honestly!?), and I really can’t picture X-23 expressing much concern about how someone feels when such an important mission is going on. Two chapters in, and I’m already starting to think that Marvel should have just let Christopher Yost and Craig Kyle handle the entire event.

As for Ariel Olivetti’s work…well…he uses a very “love it or hate it” style. As a whole I can’t really stand it and as a result, I’m not a fan of the visuals in Cable #13. That said, I will give him credit for an appropriately hideous looking Deadpool and some pretty cool looking scenery.

Conclusion: Cable #13 pretty much justified and made real my fears about what would happen when Swierczynski and Olivetti took the reigns of an interesting story. I look forward to what’s coming next in the Messiah War, but at the same time, not really because of anything that took place in its second chapter. Consider me currently disappointed, but optimistic for the future.

Grade:  C

-Kyle Posluszny