writer: Brian Michael Bendis / artist: Chris Bachalo
Brian Bendis tapped into something special with his latest Uncanny X-Men arc, The Last Will and Testament of Charles Xavier. Equal parts mutant mayhem and family drama, the story came across heartfelt and intimate, something the franchise has needed more of for a while now. But as of an issue ago, the arc has started to linger a bit. Can we expect things to pick up speed?
This issue picks up with Cyclops and his heart to heart with the newest “OhMyGodHeCouldEndAllOfMankind” level mutant on the block, Matthew Malloy, being interrupted by Magneto, the Punisher for mutantkind. In making himself the new Magneto, Cyclops has alienated himself from everyone to a point where the actual Magneto can’t even stand him. This argument…short lived as it was….was worth its weight in vibranium. Dueling ideologies is one of Bendis’ strong points as he keeps us on edge about which path Matthew is going to choose. Meanwhile, Magik pays a visit to her current mentor, Dr. Strange for alternative solutions to the problem at hand.
This, on top of Eva Bell’s time traveling shenanigans adds some interesting new elements to stir into the pot, but I just wish it were moving a little faster. The visuals are as good as you can possibly ask for from Chris Bachalo. His strengths as far as character design and details are still there. His weaknesses as far as cluttered panels have improved from past issues, so we’re getting much better Bachalo, but it’s still not on par with Kris Anka.
Bottom Line: More quality exposition with some new elements thrown in the mix will hopefully kickstart this plot back into overdrive again. 8 out of 10.