[Comic Book Review] Marvel Comics’ UNCANNY X-MEN #12

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PopCultHQ received an advance review copy of UNCANNY X-MEN #12 from Marvel Comics. Available February 20th, 2019, the creative team for this series features writing from Matthew Rosenberg, art from Salvador Larroca, colors by Rachelle Rosenberg, and lettering from VC’s Joe Caramagna.

Here’s PopCultHQ’s spoiler-free review of…

Uncanny X-Men #12

Writer: Matthew Rosenberg
Artist: Salvador Larroca
Colorist: Rachelle Rosenberg
Letterer: Joe Caramagna
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Main Cover Artists:
Salvador Larroca & Rachelle Rosenberg
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After the devastating events of ‘X-Men Disassembled,’ it falls to Cyclops to rebuild the X-Men in the face of overwhelming hatred. Thankfully, he’s not the only X-Man to have just returned from oblivion. Scott and Logan are together again, and they are mutantkind’s only hope. Writer Matthew Rosenberg and returning superstar X-Artist Salvador Larroca lead the X-Men into their darkest hour…and beyond!

PopCultHQ’s Comic Book Review:
UNCANNY X-MEN #12

Cyclops and Wolverine, two recently resurrected X-Men, continue their reunion tour and rescue more of their teammates on the way to piecing everything back together.

Writing:

Ten issues in, this latest revival of the main X-title was already floundering. Bogged down by either the need for a weekly schedule or the weight of setting up the ‘Age of X-Man’ storyline, my interest in yet another volume of X-capades was waning. It’s only taken two issues for Matthew Rosenberg to completely turn this around and have me waiting intently for the next issue.

Last issue was all impact and set-up. Re-establishing Cyclops role in the team and setting the premise for the story going forward. This issue is break-neck pace and all-out action. Familiar characters populate the story, but this is a strengthening of the Logan and Cyke dynamic that hasn’t felt this strong since the sorely underrated ‘Schism’ storyline.

Matthew Rosenberg, excellent on We Can Never Go Home, strong on Phoenix Resurrection, and clearly has a jones for all things X-related, has freed himself from the shackles of having to tidy up the X-play room and is now able to move with clearer purpose and direction in terms of story.

In two issues, he’s undone whatever my misgivings may be for Cyclops as he’s been used in the last five years. He’s already washed from my mind the failure-to-launch pointlessness of Wolverine’s death. Marvel, please let him spread his wings and bring the X-men back to a consistency it’s only shown glimpses of since being displaced by the Avengers as the flagship team. After so many false starts and hopes dashed, it’s time for a writer like Matthew Rosenberg to carve a big old X back into comics and really make his mark.

Art:

Salvador Larroca has been holding it down for Marvel since having a hand in Heroes Return in the mid-90s. He was a familiar, reoccurring face throughout the post-Morrison era of the X-men. Highlighted by his work during the underrated Milligan run on the title. His work on Iron Man shouldn’t be easily forgotten either. When you need a reliable artist with solid history to help turn things around, they couldn’t have paired Rosenberg with a more appropriate artist then Larroca. He rips through the action with fiendish fury. He controls the pace of the story with sharpened skill, and capably handles everything the script throws into the story, breakouts, fight scenes, numerous characters and all. It’s a good feeling when someone as experienced as Larroca still can re-energize a book in the way that’s being done on Uncanny right now. To top it all off, he’s no slouch when it comes to covers either.

Colors:

Rachelle Rosenberg’s colors are a throwback to the very era this X-book is threatening to return to. If not for the fact that the old costumes aren’t back, this is a juxtaposition of muted tones and military industrialism against the bright fanfare of mutant powers. It’s not exactly 90s. It’s an advancement on the best attributes of that. The colors appropriately compliment and enhance Larroca’s great pencils, but really shine with every optic blast that Cyclops unleashes. That is exactly what the colorist of an X-men title should begin and end with and Rosenberg handles that with authority.

Rosenberg is well-versed in X-Men iterations having previously showcased her talents on Astonishing X-Men, Nightcrawler, Amazing X-Men, X-Men: Legacy, as well as various Spider-Man projects for Marvel.

Letters:

Joe Caramagna really shines with the lettering in this issue. James Cameron once said that “less isn’t more, more is more!” Caramagna has made that his mantra and his effects work is pure, unbridled, off-the-leash proof. His dialogue is smartly used in terms of placement AND look as well. Remember when comics weren’t afraid to be comics? Joe takes that ball and runs wild with it.

No stranger to the X-men, Caramagna has worked his magic on the Astonishing X-men, previous volumes of Uncanny, The Amazing Spider-man, as well as Captain America and Iron Man. He’s clearly a letterer who knows a thing or two about action-packed storytelling.

PopCultHQ’s overall assessment

For the first time in a long time, I’m enthusiastic about the direction of the main X-book. It seems funny in the face of so many X-titles on the stands right now, but un-diluting everything has been a breath of fresh air for the X-brand. I can’t wait to see where this book goes next and I’m backing it to maintain this level of quality. It’s already action-packed, well-written, marvellously illustrated, and electrified with creative ideas. It’s sitting strong at excellent and it feels like the creative team hasn’t even warmed up yet.

PopCultHQ’s Rating:

4 out of 5 Stars

PopCultHQ Rating - 4 Stars
PopCultHQ Rating – 4 Stars

UNCANNY X-MEN #12 can be purchased on ComiXology and available
at your local comic shop and online retailers on Wednesday, February 20th!

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Buy Direct from Marvel Comics!

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Writer – Matthew Rosenberg

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Artist – Salvador Larroca

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Colorist – Rachelle Rosenberg

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Letterer – Joe Caramagna

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Publisher – Marvel Comics

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