For reasons that boggle my mind, the title ‘New Mutants’ remains a frequent flyer in the X-Men franchise. It’s a weird name, right? Even when it was first used, to introduce a new, younger team of X-Men, it was still weird. Like, the X-Men knew a lot of other mutants by the time the New Mutants were introduced. Those kids weren’t even the first team of new mutants to join the X-Men.
But whatever. The title keeps getting used for new X-Men comics, and the next one is gonna feature Strong Guy!
I’m telling you all of this because I’m still engaged in the Strong Guy Watch. I’m pretty sure the rule of having Strong Guy randomly appear in the background of X-Men stories has passed, but I loved the character, so I’m calling him out!
The mini-series will be written by Matthew Rosenberg, with art by Adam Gorham. It’s also going to reunite Strong Guy with Wolfsbane, two parts of my favorite comic book friendship trio. I hope Rosenberg does something fun with that.
Yay Strong Guy! Though I’m disappointed that he lost the beard.
Now this is more like it! The last issue of X-Factor was a weird, context-less adventure in Marrakesh that didn’t seem to really have anything to do with X-Factor as a comic or as a superhero team. This issue, starring Wolfsbane, is a proper farewell. It tells a great Wolfsbane story, deals with her personal fallout in the wake of the Hell on Earth War, and sets her up with a new, post-series life. This is exactly what I want to see from the final issues of X-Factor.
Rahne gets the help of Father John Maddox to say goodbye, and once again, an appearance by Multiple Man’s religious dupe makes for a good issue.
Comic Rating: 4/5 – Good.
It’s sad to see X-Factor go, but it’s fun to watch writer Peter David say his goodbyes. I didn’t like the last issue whatsoever. It wasn’t a goodbye. It wasn’t a character story. It had nothing to do with anything. But this is very different. Father Maddox is one of the best creations to come out of X-Factor, and he’s a great narrator. Nothing has been as good as Maddox’s first ever appearance, but there’s nothing wrong with that. Maddox works well as a foil for Wolfsbane, given their religious connection, and he gives her a suitable outlet to wrap up her story. This issue definitely feels like a goodbye to Wolfsbane. I knew PAD could pull it off.
This issue also definitely feels like a farewell to X-Factor. As Rahne’s story wrapped up, as she shared a final scene with Guido, it really felt like an end of everything. Rahne and Guido used to be best friends, but in this issue I could really see how far they’ve come – and how far they are from friends anymore. Guido killed her son, after all. Rahne gets a very nice send-off. There’s a flash of Wolfsbane action, a heartfelt reunion with an old love, and some counseling with Father Maddox.
In the end, Rahne gets a chance to see the light. I hope we all get that chance when X-Factor comes to an end this fall.