Page 45 Review by Stephen
Wolverine, Emma Frost, then Cyclops:
"How come we all have to wear your G.I. Joe uniform of the week and Emma gets to wear what she likes, Cyke?"
"Darling, if you were sleeping with the leader of the pack, I'm sure that you too could wear what you liked. Presumably a fresh animal skin of some kind."
"There's beer on the plane, Logan."
The X-Men are off on a field trip to Mbangawi in Africa on the other side of Lake Victoria from the Serengeti plains where Ororo grew up. Her husband King T'Challa has reported a phenomenon of so-called mutant births, babies manifesting explosive powers straight out of the womb. Hospitals have been destroyed, mothers have been killed by their own children, and as for the children themselves, it is to weep. Even though it is scientific fact that the X-gene only powers up at puberty, Cyclops is in denial. There are no more mutants being born around the planet, and he's desperate for that to change. But Dr. Henry McCoy a.k.a. the Beast is far more pragmatic, determined to be thorough, and something just pinged. It isn't good news.
The final book in Ellis' ASTONISHING trilogy in which we're treated to a sobering history lesson courtesy of Logan and some magnificent African landscapes and balletic athletics by one the most versatile artists in comics. You are advised, however, to read the first of Ellis's ASTONISHING X-MEN books, GHOST BOX first (at the time of typing we still have it in both h/c and s/c), because it's what they've encountered there that has come back to bite them.
Storm, Wolverine, then the Beast:
"I'm taking him out of here. You deal with that. Try diplomacy first, please, but the issue is containing them."
"You wanna try diplomacy, or do you want me to?"
"I don't believe I've ever seen you stab anyone diplomatically before."
For those interested in the construction of comics, there's the big bonus of the first issue's original script at the back, and its startling execution in black and white inks and sandy tone before colouring. With no lettering at all, they are some of the most beautiful, crisp and clean art pages I've seen.
Also I think Ellis is the first person to amuse us with the blindingly obvious r.e. Emma Frost: her English accent is fake! Blindingly obvious now that he's mentioned it, anyway.
Not to be confused with Ellis' second in the trilogy ASTONISHING X-MEN EXOGENETIC, also superb.