Thursday, September 22, 2011

X-Men Schism #4 (of 5)

So if I were forced to sum up this issue of X-Men Schism in one word, it would have to be: "Dopey."

That's because writer Jason Aaron has provided us with a classic example of an "Idiot Plot," which is a story that only works if all the characters act like idiots.

This mini-series has been building toward the big breaking point, where the X-Men team will (apparently) separate into two (or more) different factions.

Up until now the story has focused on the rise of a vast array of Sentinels, the most reliable of villains, since they are giant robots that hunt mutants. With team members spread across the globe, a final deadly menace is marching on the home of the mutants on the island Utopia.

So of course that's the perfect time for Cyclops and Wolverine to get into an argument that somehow escalates into open warfare between the two.

I don't want to give away any more than that, and there are probably legitimate disagreements that would lead to a splitting of the team - but this isn't one of them. It's a silly, superficial argument as Wolverine objects to a decision by Cyclops that exactly mirrors similar moves Wolverine has made innumerable times over the years.

A well-written argument would have the reader thinking, "I can see both sides of this one - they both have a point." Not here. I was thinking, "Both of these heroes are acting completely out of character."

Let me add that there's nothing wrong on the art side of the equation, with Alan Davis and Mark Farmer turning in their usual stellar performance. There are wonderful quiet moments, fantastic splash pages and some incredible action sequences. Great stuff!

But the story... it'll just leave you shaking your head.

Grade: C+


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