Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Utopia #1

 

The Writing: Fraction puts on his Claremont hat, going back to a theme that has been done to death. “Let’s make the X-Men about intolerance.” A fine message, for sure, but it’s all been done before in the X-Men. That said, Fraction is still writing better-than-the-rest here. He packs this issue full of cleverness. So, you get your money’s worth, but a lot of this stuff feels a bit unnecessary, and it all could’ve fit in a regular issue. But no, these X-Men events have to be oversized and feature Marc Silvestri art.

The Art: Silvestri is Silvestri. I’m not too fond of his work, but he’s a god to some. And, to be fair, he rendered one of the best X-Men tales ever, “Here Comes Tomorrow.” The problem here is that Silvestri needed four additional artists to provide the crowd for Fraction’s script. So, needless to say, all the additional pencilers create a slightly jarring reading experience, and a few continuity mistakes along the way. Also, and this is the problem with nearly every artist Fraction works with, Silvestri renders the action scenes well, but struggles with some of the quieter moments.

Final Word: The last page of this issue is supposed to have a big impact, but it’s already been spoiled. This is Marvel’s only crossover this summer, and, thankfully, it’s completely in Fraction’s hands. As a huge Fraction fan, I couldn’t be happier. However, this special, while good from a technical standpoint, doesn’t provide an interesting enough premise, and, really, isn’t very entertaining.

Grade: C+

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6 Responses to Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Utopia #1

  1. dclebeau says:

    I actually read this! And I totally agree with you. As someone who doesn’t read a lot of X-Men comics, even I am sick of the intolerance angle. Especially when it’s played as blatantly as it was here.

    What’s more, the characters make such stupid decisions just to create the conflict needed for the plot. Cyclops really is a lousy leader. He should know he can’t just sit on his hands and say “I can’t control other mutants.”

  2. brucecastle says:

    Cyclops has a lot of problems, especially lately.

    However, this time, he wasn’t too bad. Although, it did seem a bit uncharacteristically passive, given his recent “kill them all” attitude.

    Still, I’d stay with it. It should get better. The biggest problem here was that we paid 3.99 for a fairly uninteresting setup to events that are intriguing, and, as I said, it was only mildly entertaining.

    Buy Uncanny X-Men #512! It’s completely self-contained!

    • dclebeau says:

      You’re gonna kill me. I skimmed Uncanny. I thought the art was much better than the usual Greg Land stuff. But I thought it looked boring and I put it back down.

      I actually tried to get interested in it a couple of times, but something about it was off-putting.

      Probably worth repeating here that I really hate the X-Men.

  3. brucecastle says:

    *loading shotgun now*

    First, Land is not the “usual” artist. He shares with Terry Dodson.

    Second, this art is by Yanick Paquette, who you should remember from Bulleteer. His art is awesome.

    Third, I don’t like the X-Men much either, just good stories.

    Fourth, Uncanny X-Men #512 is a good story.

    Fifth, pick it up!

    Sixth, pick it up!

    Seventh, pick it up!

    Eight, did you pick it up yet?

    In all seriousness, it was a darn good issue. I don’t want to oversell it. So it was a terrible issue, but you should read it anyway. :D

  4. dclebeau says:

    Alright, I’ll read it! (Btw, I’ve got some Animal Man issues to read too.)

    I like Yanick Paquette. I obvioulsy remember him from Bulleteer. But I also read his run on Wonder Woman waaaaaay back when. Good stuff.

  5. brucecastle says:

    By “some Animal Man issues to read,” you did mean the first trade, right?

    You didn’t just find a few random issues on a street corner, did you?

    Because you should read those things in order.

    Happy reading, either way.

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