Bethany W Pope's Comic Reviews

Reviewer For: Comic Watch Reviews: 93
8.4Avg. Review Rating

9.9
Age of X-Man: Alpha #1

Feb 3, 2019

This candy-coloured dystopia combines a strong philosophical background, profound understanding of the characters, and measured shots of dread and just-plain-fun to create an alternate-dimensional story like nothing we've seen the X-Men face before. This just might be the story we've been waiting for. Reviewed by Bethany W Pope

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8.3
Age of X-Man: Omega #1

Jul 18, 2019

Taken as a whole, this was the conclusion of an excellent experiment. One which, I hope, will not be completely erased by Hickman's upcoming venture in the Land of X.

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8.3
Age Of X-Man: The Amazing Nightcrawler #1

Feb 28, 2019

This book is a complex mix of soap-opera-style drama, incisive social commentary, and a nuanced study of life on the fun side of a scary totalitarian regime. It's a hell of a lot of fun. And, yes, Nightcrawler is pretty danged Amazing.

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8.3
Age Of X-Man: The Amazing Nightcrawler #3

Apr 27, 2019

This series asks some serious questions, hidden behind a compulsively consumable popcorn-flavored plot. If you aren't reading it yet, you are missing out.

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7.8
Age Of X-Man: The Amazing Nightcrawler #4

May 29, 2019

This is the well-written, funny, occasionally touching penultimate issue of a wonderful series. There's a little, inadvertant, insensitivity to adopted families (and an odd focus on the importance of genetic family) but aside from that this book is well worth picking up.

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8.5
Age Of X-Man: The Amazing Nightcrawler #5

Jun 24, 2019

This final issue masterfully builds to a conclusion which feels inevitable and devastating all at once. I haven't been so moved by a comic in a very long time.

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9.0
Age Of X-Man: The Marvelous X-Men #1

Feb 11, 2019

Beneath the 60's-Chic design and happy happy faces inhabiting X-Man's perfect world lies a deep seam of dystopian fear. Witty writing and beautiful art combine to make this issue everything that you'd want from an X-Men alternate reality Story.

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8.9
Age Of X-Man: The Marvelous X-Men #2

Mar 19, 2019

This story balances action, world-building and introspection to highlight the fact that when doubt is forbidden we all are made into fanatics. Welcome to the second issue of what will likely become the best series of the year.

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8.9
Age Of X-Man: The Marvelous X-Men #3

Apr 20, 2019

In terms of both the story and panel-after-panel of beautiful art, this is an issue to read at once, in a breathless, admiring rush, before revisiting again and again to chew on all the meaty bits. This is an astonishing piece of work.

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8.6
Age Of X-Man: The Marvelous X-Men #4

Jun 1, 2019

With the combination of a fascinating premise, innovative art and perfect pacing, these creators deliver the penultimate issue of Marvel's most ambitious series. I have never loathed an X-Man villain as much as I despise Nate Grey. That, in itself, is a remarkable achievement.

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8.4
Avengers (2018) #1

Mar 9, 2019

This series is a cure for the rainy-day blues, if ever I've seen one. Pick it up.

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8.9
B.P.R.D. #1

Sep 21, 2018

This issue serves as a bridge between episodes, but that's not a bad thing. Ragnarok is coming.

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9.0
B.P.R.D.: The Devil You Know #9

Aug 16, 2018

Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, but at least there are jokes about Guliani. Pick this one up.

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8.4
B.P.R.D.: The Devil You Know #12

Jan 20, 2019

All the signs and portents have been read, the population of the earth is dwindling, and the dragons are rising from the depths. There's nothing left to do but sit back and wait for the end of the world. The final cycle of stories in the Mignolaverse are rapidly ramping up for their certain-to-be-bloody conclusion. Luckily there's room for humour --and a touch of tenderness -- amidst all of the destruction. This series is a lot of mythic fun.

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8.3
Batman (2016) #55

Sep 28, 2018

King and Daniel construct a comic book that is as intricate as the inner workings of a clock while still packing the pages with plenty of spirit, heart, and fun. It's everything you want in a Batman book.

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8.5
Batman (2016) #56

Oct 10, 2018

A deeply psychological story told with nuance, depth, and badass flair.

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8.5
Batman (2016) #57

Oct 26, 2018

Some stories are fairy tales. Some stories are nightmares. This story incorporates elements of both and the results are explosive.

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8.1
Batman (2016) #58

Nov 9, 2018

This is a remarkably clever, multilayered narrative which balances a measure of heart with an abundance of punching.

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7.8
Batman (2016) #59

Nov 24, 2018

This is a well constructed issue designed to reveal the cleverness of Bane's machinations that largely succeeds though it is marred by a slight flaw.

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7.8
Batman (2016) #60

Dec 5, 2018

Carefully constructed, psychologically nuanced, and tinged with humour of the blackest, bleakest variety, this issue adds another layer of paint to the mural declaring Tom King the best Batman writer in decades.

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8.2
Batman (2016) #61

Dec 19, 2018

King starts off this new arc with a level of structural narrative complexity that is perfect for the medium and thus far unequaled in the form. There's also a surprising amount of well-executed violence.

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8.4
Batman (2016) #62

Jan 11, 2019

This was a hallucinatory, nightmarish episode contributing a vital splash of blood to an interesting story. The art is worth the cover-price alone.

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9.1
Batman (2016) #63

Jan 27, 2019

The stories that Tom King is telling with Batman will prove to be part of an historic run. This issue adds another piece to his unspeakabe puzzle. It is a masterful story.

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6.7
Batman (2016) #64

Feb 10, 2019

Incoherent dialogue, a rushed pace, and a flimsy plot cannot, it turns out, be redeemed by good line art.

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5.6
Batman (2016) #65

Feb 24, 2019

Despite the frankly heroic efforts of the visual artists to wrench coherence and beauty from this script, the writing was so abysmal that I cannot recommend that anyone spend money on this book.

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8.6
Batman (2016) #66

Mar 6, 2019

Elegant, deeply-psychological writing paired with deliberately noirish art and at least one giant tentacle-monster. What more do you need from a comic?

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9.2
Batman (2016) #67

Mar 22, 2019

The art in this issue is absolutely stunning. The dialogue is next to non-existent, but the theme is remarkably complex. Even if you don't approve of King's long (and I would say extremely successful) experiment with narrative, you are going to want to have this in your collection on the strength of the visuals.

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7.7
Batman (2016) #68

Apr 12, 2019

Although the art is as arresting as the plot, the story (and its unworkable shift in perspective) leaves a lot to be desired. This is something of a low-point for an otherwise fascinating arc.

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8.4
Batman (2016) #69

Apr 18, 2019

The circuitous narrative spooled out over the last several issues comes to fruition, here, when Batman finally finds the key to freeing himself from the labyrinth of fear. The art is stellar, as is the narrative. This is one to pick up.

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7.9
Batman (2016) #70

May 1, 2019

Despite excellent dialogue and the usual (for this book) high quality of art, this issue felt unnecessarily bloated. It could have told twice the story in half the space, had the editing been a little more effective.

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8.2
Batman (2016) #71

May 15, 2019

Although the script seemed to be a bit muddled in places its deficits were balanced by the strength of the dialogue and art. Clearly King is building to an emotionally-powerful conclusion. Lets hope that he sticks the landing.

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7.6
Batman (2016) #72

Jun 6, 2019

This exceedingly brief issue is composed primarily of beautifully illustrated filler. You'll miss nothing by skipping it.

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8.8
Batman (2016) #73

Jun 19, 2019

After the unfortunate waste of the previous issue, King jumps back in the saddle with this stellar exercise in narrative economy and astonishing art. This is one to pick up.

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8.8
Batman (2016) #74

Jul 12, 2019

Balancing good psychology with roaring action is no easy task, but it is one which the team of King, Bellaire, and Janin have absolutely knocked out of the park. This issue more than redeems the somewhat weaker passages we had to slog through to get here.

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8.1
Batman (2016) #75

Jul 19, 2019

After reading this issue I can say that (assuming that King can resist the urge to ruin the pacing by spreading the story out until it is thinner than a wet poppadom) City of Bane looks like it will be a very fun, very wild ride indeed.

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8.5
Batman (2016) #76

Aug 15, 2019

We don't really need another contemporary totalitarian dystopia, since we're well on the way to living in one now, but this is proving to be a fun ride anyway.

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8.9
Batman (2016) Annual #3

Dec 12, 2018

With this issue, Tom Taylor has added another, fascinating, dimension to the Bat-mythos. Parental love, and the function of compassion, are the primary themes. Oh yeah. And Alfred beats up a bunch of baddies while wearing a Halloween mask. That happens, too.

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8.5
Cloak and Dagger (2018) #1

Jun 12, 2018

Issue #1 takes the series off on a strong start, pairing a tight narrative and strong characterization with a surprising amount of psychological depth and some well-planned art. This miniseries seems to be aimed at a slightly older audience than the show it is promoting, but that is more of a strength than a weakness. It's a good jumping on point for new readers.

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8.5
Cloak and Dagger (2018) #2

Jul 16, 2018

This is a fun, fast-paced book whose noir surface hides a surprising amount of psychological depth.

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8.6
Cloak and Dagger (2018) #4

Sep 15, 2018

The neo-noir tone of this comic is consistent throughout, but the careful character studies are a little let down by some pacing problems and a few instances of dubious art.

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7.6
Cloak and Dagger (2018) #5

Oct 25, 2018

This issue served up a lot of introverted contemplation, disguised as an international police-chase. If you care about the characters, it's one to pick up.

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8.3
DCeased #2

Jun 5, 2019

Compulsive, cinematic action coupled with a good wallop of heart: what more could you want in a comic?

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7.5
Deadpool (2018) #1

Jun 16, 2018

Deadpool resets to his original factory settings, abundant pouches and unicorn undies included. This book is good for fans of musical theatre and pro wrestling.

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9.0
Deadpool (2018) #2

Jul 17, 2018

Love him or hate him, there's a lot more to this Merc than obscure pop-culture references and a variety of pouches. Theres also a lot of punching and pretty unicorn-themed accessories.

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8.0
Deadpool (2018) #3

Aug 10, 2018

A solid, slightly nauseating read. There are chunks in the vomit.

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8.0
Deadpool (2018) #4

Sep 23, 2018

This was a cartoonishly-paced, gloriously-violent vacation in Weird World that is only occasionally let down by the art.

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7.5
Deadpool (2018) #5

Oct 12, 2018

This book is the best there is at what it does and what it does is mix juvenile humor with cartoonish violence and references to films which came out decades before I was born. Mayhem. It's a good thing.

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7.9
Deadpool (2018) #6

Nov 15, 2018

Stories about depression are rarely this much fun. There was an emotional honesty to this issue which shocked me, without reducing the quality of the humour.

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7.7
Deadpool (2018) #7

Dec 12, 2018

The art is beautifully rendered and joyfully disgusting. The story is a bit like a Simpsons episode after a hit of meth. But hey. It's Deadpool. What more do you want?

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9.0
Extermination (2018) #1

Aug 23, 2018

This was a dramatic and arresting introduction to a series which will certainly have repercussions for all of the X-Books.

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9.3
Extermination (2018) #2

Sep 2, 2018

This is an extraordinarily tightly-wrought, action-packed comic that is laden with character and balanced by finely-accomplished art. Pick it up.

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7.8
Extermination (2018) #3

Oct 6, 2018

This is an action packed, well-written (slightly familiar) story told and illustrated with style, verve and more than a few hidden jokes.

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8.2
Extermination (2018) #4

Nov 9, 2018

The penultimate issue is fast-paced and well-plotted, with enough action and banter to keep the readers entertained and anxious about the safety of their favorite characters.

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8.0
Extermination (2018) #5

Jan 1, 2019

The conclusion of the Extermination series combined tight writing with beautiful art and manages to tie off most of the loose ends created by the time-displaced O5.

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9.4
House of X #1

Jul 24, 2019

This is the beginning of a multifoliate, gorgeously complex story, one which looks like it will change the franchise for many years to come. The art is wonderful enough to live up to that burden. Pick this issue up.

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9.3
House of X #2

Aug 7, 2019

Some stories go off like damp firecrackers. This one is a nuclear bomb.

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9.5
Koshchei the Deathless #6

Jun 17, 2018

The final issue of Koshchei the Deathless is a dark, sad, beautiful, and ultimately hopeful conclusion to a fable about a man searching for his soul. It's a good one. Pick it up.

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8.8
New Mutants (2009) #1

Sep 6, 2018

New Mutants: Dead Souls #6 is a thoughtful, beautifully-wrought character study coupled to a flash-bang plot and seasoned with cursing and the promise of nudity. Along with X-Men Red, Astonishing X-Men, and Extermination, it is one of the best books that Marvel has produced this year.

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9.0
New Mutants: Dead Souls #4

Jun 22, 2018

This story balances on the knife-edge between humor and anxiety. It's a series full of guts, horror, and a lot of heart. Plus a few drunk Russians.

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9.5
New Mutants: Dead Souls #5

Jul 18, 2018

This issue is a perfect balance of humor, horror, and character development. I cannot recommend this series highly enough.

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9.4
Powers of X #1

Jul 31, 2019

Groundbreaking, gut-wrenching storytelling and astonishing art marks the beginning of what will prove to be a very important X-Man story.

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9.2
Powers of X #2

Aug 14, 2019

It's difficult to keep four plots spinning at the same pace over 34 pages, but Hickman manages it beautifully. The plot(s) all take a major kick-start in this issue, and the art is beautiful enough to be compelling on its own. If you haven't already, pick this series up.

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9.3
Powers of X #3

Aug 21, 2019

Everything changes in this issue. Everything ends. Of course, knowing Hickman, hes just using this as an excuse to press our expectations even further. This is not a story that you want to miss.

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8.5
Saga #52

Jun 9, 2018

This issue struck a good balance between character and plot, but although the writing was tight, it was impossible to disguise the fact that this issue was primarily intended as a bridge to the next part of the plot.

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7.5
Saga #53

Jul 2, 2018

This issue is wrenching and beautiful: the writing is heartbreaking, but undermined by one terrible flaw.

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10
Saga #54

Jul 30, 2018

This is issue contains what is probably the most well-considered philosophical statement delivered by a comic this year.

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8.5
Spider-Man: Life Story #1

Mar 30, 2019

Marvel is hitting it out of the park with their stories, just lately. This one is certainly a mini series that you'll want to watch.

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8.6
Spider-Man: Life Story #2

Apr 23, 2019

The fascinating What-If? Narrative begun in the previous issue continues here. The script is tight, masterfully balancing the tightrope between profundity and silly fun, and the art is a beautiful fusion of the best parts of classical and contemporary form. Pick this one up.

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8.6
Spider-Man: Life Story #3

Jun 16, 2019

It's amazing how much heart, plot, and generally amazing art are crammed into each issue of this incredibly-satisfying series.The fandom is lucky to have it.

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8.8
Spider-Man: Life Story #4

Jul 16, 2019

The pacing in this series is nearly perfect. The script is an expert balance of action and introspection, with a real focus on character. Combined with fun, jubilantart, this series is one for the ages.

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8.4
The Replacer: Home is Where the Horror is! #1

May 11, 2019

Beneath the body horror, marvellously gory art, and genuine metaphysical terror of this book there is a story which has been told with love and honesty. It's difficult to read, in the very best sense, but well worth the effort required to endure it. Do pick it up.

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9.5
Thor (2018) #1

Jun 30, 2018

Things fall apart. The center cannot hold. The Gods are scattered, war is coming, and Thor's having problems with his hammer. But what else is new? Read on to find out.

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8.0
Thor (2018) #2

Jul 8, 2018

While this story lacked the subtext and narrative nuances promised by the first issue, it remains a rollicking adventure story, laden with beauty and wit. Pick it up.

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8.8
Thor (2018) #3

Jul 26, 2018

Hel has frozen over, and someone has a wedding in it. A story this operatic needs a Wagnerian score and a deep draught of laudanum to wash it down with.

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9.2
Thor (2018) #4

Aug 24, 2018

This was a dizzy, psychedelic sugar-rush of a finale punctuated with operatic violence and moments of real emotional weight. Pick it up.

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8.2
Thor (2018) #5

Sep 27, 2018

This issue balances action-packed adventure, meditative philosophy, and some very well-done humor, creating a story that is trippy and fun, with just a hint of melancholy running through it. Pick it up.

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7.7
Thor (2018) #6

Nov 3, 2018

A lushly drawn narrative set against a cosmic backdrop told with humor and a twist of pathos. This book is one to pick up.

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7.4
Thor (2018) #7

Nov 16, 2018

This is a beautifully realised story with a terrible (and absolutely avoidable) flaw at its heart that the strong writing and art cannot quite compensate for.

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7.8
Thor (2018) #8

Jan 2, 2019

This story (rather jarringly) shunts readers back to the present. The dialogue is good, and the art is magnificent, but the structure is haunted with difficulties not least the writer's depiction of women. Thori remains absolutely delightful.

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7.4
Thor (2018) #9

Feb 3, 2019

This issue's beautiful art and stellar plot are tarnished by some rather insidious sexism. Reviewed by Bethany W Pope

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8.0
Thor (2018) #10

Mar 1, 2019

This issue was more considered than the last, written with greater psychological depth and narrative nuance, possibly because Aaron was more comfortable with the characters. Even so, the only female role was occupied by a woman who was talking about her son, while literally in the kitchen. That's...not great. The art was, as ever, perfectly suited to the story. It's worth picking up.

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7.2
Typhoid Fever (2018): X-Men #1

Nov 9, 2018

This book is an action-packed entertainment gumball, undermined (in part) by an unfortunate take on mental illness. Nevertheless, the overblown, soap-opera elements were a lot of fun.

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8.5
Wakanda Forever: X-Men #1

Aug 3, 2018

This is a fun, well-written adventure which is let down, in places, by the politics of the art.

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8.3
X-Force (2018) #1

Dec 28, 2018

The opening issue of this relaunch is packed with keen characterisation, sharp dialogue, and absolutely fantastic art. If you like your X-Books to be a little darker and morally murky than Red or Uncanny, this is a great series to pick up.

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9.2
X-Force (2018) #2

Feb 6, 2019

This new iteration of X-Force combines tight plotting, cutting dialogue, and an intriguing mystery with exceptional art. Taken together, these elements build to a fun, engaging, and thematically-dark story. There's a renaissance happening in the X-Books right now. This is part of it. - Review by Bethany W Pope

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8.6
X-Force (2018) #4

Mar 21, 2019

Smart, fast-paced writing, 90's themes, and some rather extraordinarily nuanced art combine to produce exactly the kind of action-packed, morally dubious book that X-Force fans have always loved. Pick this one up.

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8.3
X-Force (2018) #5

Apr 14, 2019

Every time-travel story requires a flashback or two to flesh out the narrative. This flashback was set two-thousand years in the future, but despite such timey-wimey shenanigans the story was wonderfully clear. This was a good tale, told with sensitivity, and augmented by some lovely gory art. It has everything youd want in an X-Force book -- and its an excellent jumping-on place for new readers.

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8.1
X-Force (2018) #6

Apr 25, 2019

While not strictly an X-Force story (the crew are hardly in it) this issue presents a deeply satisfying glimpses into a possible future. It's well worth checking out.

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8.3
X-Force (2018) #7

May 20, 2019

The pace of this issue allowed for moments of superb characterisation while not stinting on moments of real dread. The art is effective and stylish. This is a series to pick up.

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8.4
X-Force (2018) #8

Jun 17, 2019

This story continues to be a fun, character-driven dark-toned futuristic romp. A good action comic need not be profound, so long as the flow is fast and the script is enjoyable. This is very much the case for this story.

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8.1
X-Men (2013) #1

Dec 8, 2018

This one-shot explors two heart-wrenching stories which explore the loss of a familiar hero. Cable never appeared as a grown man, even in flashbacks, but he was finely drawn in his absence. There was a gaping hole in the center of this narrative, and that hole served as the story's living heart.

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9.5
X-Men: Grand Design #1

Sep 6, 2018

A dense, joyous, occasionally frightening, often-hilarious reimagining of five years worth of X-Lore. This is an essential read for fans of all stripes. Plus, there's a panel in which Dr. Doom plays with a Barbie.

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10
X-Men: Grand Design - Second Genesis #1

Aug 4, 2018

This is a joyous, intensely fun, exquisitely executed reimagining of five years of X-Men lore condensed into one incredible story. Whether you're new to the fandom or an old hand, you are going to pick this one up.

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