by Jason Aaron (writer), Renato Guedes (pencils), Jose Wilson Magalhaes (inks), Matthew Wilson (colors), and Cory Petit (letters)

The Story: Logan realizes that it was never his revenge that he was working towards as the Red Right Hand’s plan reaches its gut-wrenching endgame.

What’s Good: Wow, Jason Aaron nails us with some huge, huge twists this month.  I mean, I suppose it was to be expected that we’d get a big curveball in this final issue, but seriously….just wow.

Right from the get-go, we discover the nasty surprise that the Red Right Hand has in store for Logan and it’s a stunner.  After all the diabolical acts they’ve perpetrated on Logan, it’s such an utterly twisted about-face.  Once again, all I can say is that Jason Aaron is a sick man and that this was the sort of thing that only he could come up with.

The best part of that twist though?  It’s a big twist, yes, but Aaron fools us into thinking that that’s the endgame.  And it’s not.  At all.  In fact, it’s just the appetizer for the megaton hammer of a shocker at the end of the issue.  As most readers have probably suspected, the Red Right Hand have been playing Logan for a fool as he rampaged about their compound.  However, no one could’ve possibly expected this.  Guaranteed, your jaw will hit the floor.  It’s one of those things where, one panel before the reveal, you start to realize what’s going to happen but still can’t quite believe it when it does.  It’s one of those shockers that’s guaranteed to make you pause and stop reading just for a moment.  Holy crap.

The team of Guedes, Magalhaes, and Wilson also do a fine job once again.  While we’ve seen their abilities in depicting action and grotesque stuff in general, they do solid work on subtler things this month, most notably Logan’s emotional reactions and the facial expressions of a couple key members of the Red Right Hand.  Of course, that’s not to say that they don’t get a chance at depicting some good ol’ violence.  Truly, their depictions of dead bodies really don’t hold much back.

What’s Not So Good: Right, those two twists are freaking excellent, but unfortunately, the rest of the issue has some rather lackluster points.

For starters, almost as if he felt obligated to after following the formula throughout the arc, Aaron sticks in another flashback tale of another member of the Red Right Hand and it feels like an absolute shoehorning.    As the series conclusion, this is also a busy enough issue as is and Aaron clearly feels the pressure.  This flashback tale is by far the worst one that we’ve gotten.  It’s really abbreviated and rushed, and unlike most of the other tales, there’s really nothing particularly unique or compelling about it beyond the fact that the member in question is a child who, I might add, does not speak much like a child at all.

And frankly, it’s completely unnecessary as far as this issue goes.  Aaron could’ve easily removed this character all together and the book would not have suffered one bit.  Instead, we get what feels like a bizarre, poorly timed, poorly developed, uncompelling digression that bogs down what is otherwise a great issue.

There’s also Aaron’s use of Daken, which is similarly undercooked, probably for lack of space.  There really isn’t enough time spent on developing Daken’s particular motivations or means here or, well, much of anything about him other than the fact that he’s Daken, and isn’t it cool that he’s in this comic?

Conclusion: A mixed bag, but the good ultimate outweighs the bad.

Grade: B-

-Alex Evans