The Otherworld story continues to command the attention of Wolverine’s band of mutilating mutant misfits in “Uncanny X-Force” #22. With Fantomex freed by Psylocke and the rest of the team trying to locate them while attempting to kill the Goat Monk and aid the people of Otherworld, there is certainly no shortage of excitement and adventure in these pages.
Rick Remender has done an excellent job of absolutely stuffing this issue full of story. Every character has a stand out moment in the spotlight to showcase his or her personality, powers or both. Remender bounces between each sub-plot with little effort, enhancing the chaos in the story to a rolling boil. Although the issue contains more plot than a giant-sized offering, it clocks in at the standard-issue twenty pages. Remender not only fills these pages with story and adventure and spotlights for every character, he also tosses in humor with Deadpool and Wolverine sneaking into the Goat Monk’s temple. For a team filled with violent characters, this issue is wonderfully balanced.
Greg Tocchini’s rough, sketchy art fits the story nicely in all aspects, given the uncertain harshness of Otherworld and the evils attacking it. Smaller panels make better use of his rougher style while the larger ones have a certain coloring book quality about them. Tocchini has a distinct look, build and manner for every one of the characters in this title. Costume or no, there is no mistaking Deadpool for Wolverine or Nightcrawler from pose to nose. While the sketchiness works, I cannot help but wonder how much more impressive the book would look if Tocchini had an inked or refined his line.
Dean White helps the art through his coloring, dropping in atmospheric shades as befits the story. The charge of invading hordes seen from a distance appears as through mist, while a similar style is applied to the flashback scenes in this issue.
This is my third issue in a row of “Uncanny X-Force” and it is every bit as enjoyable as I didn’t expect it to be. I’m not a fan of Deadpool, I was clueless about Fantomex, had no interest in Psylocke and considered Wolverine to be heavily overexposed. Still, I gave the series a sample with #20 and have come back, eagerly, since. This issue is jam-packed and wonderfully overwhelming but completely enticing and offers so much more to look forward to. If you’ve ever thought about checking this book out, if even for one character (Nightcrawler got me in), now is the time.