Following the recent crossover with “Wolverine: Origins,” Mike Carey’s Professor X solo title gets back to its own business with an arc set to heavily feature every X-reader’s favorite doomed romantics, Rogue and Gambit.
But what’s this? The issue opens with a bunch of SWORD agents, and they’re talking about the events of Secret Invasion. It’s not too much of a stretch to say that this was pretty much the last thing I expected to be reading about in Carey’s X-Men series. After 3 pages, I actually had to check the cover to make sure I hadn’t opened up the wrong comic! Still, Carey quickly returns readers to the X-Men groove they were expecting, and the purpose of the SWORD prologue does, of course, become apparent later.
“X-Men Legacy” has always been the book for fans of X-Men’s continuity minutia, so seeing Rogue turn up in the X-Men’s Australian base should be a real treat for anyone reading the book. Indeed, Carey actually plays with reader’s knowledge of X-continuity, by faking-out the appearance of a classic, shape-changing character only to reveal an altogether more modern one instead, fooling both the characters and the readers.
Carey’s work on “X-Men Legacy” has been particularly character-focussed, and as ever this is no exception. If you’re not a reader that likes action rather than conversations, then this might not be the comic for you. Series artist Scott Eaton does manage to make every page interesting, and the recent evolution of the title’s artwork has really brought out the best in his pencils.
The tight focus on a small cast of X-Men is in definite contrast to the earlier issues of the “Legacy” maxi-arc, and the start of this final story represents the perfect jumping-on point for fans of both “Uncanny” and “Astonishing X-Men” who might have been less willing to read a Professor X “solo” title. “X-Men Legacy” is picking up on long-running and recently-introduced plot threads, and doing it in an entertaining and unusual way.