Last time we saw our ragtag group of X-Men, they were at the mercy of Colossus, Apocalypse’s newest Horseman. This issue picks up where the last left off, and Jeff Lemire deftly gives each character a piece of the action pie. Humberto Ramos also provides a solid range of emotion, but — even with so much happening on page — the issue itself fell flat without much of a focus.
It’s always a pleasure to see Lemire write an emotionally charged scene, and this issue’s exchange between Sapna and Magik is no different. It’s heavy with warmth and charm, a stark contrast to Magik’s distressed and emotional outburst with Forge later in the issue. The same can be said during Ice Man’s impassioned speech to Storm as she buckles under the pressure of every tribulation the mutants have undergone. However, when it comes to the action, the writing isn’t as strong. Without giving us any background on the Apocalypse War or why the Horsemen want the arc, the story feels like a whole bunch of filler. Lemire positively shines during individual-focused scenes, but the issue just doesn’t leave much of an impression otherwise.
Luckily, Humberto Ramos livens up the issue with his dynamic, hyper-exaggerated style. Where Lemire falters, Ramos makes up for it over several action sequences. His art works so well in this regard, you almost don’t see the ridiculous proportions when the characters aren’t standing still. (Almost.) There are, unfortunately, times where you can’t ignore the size of Old Man Logan’s arms or the complete lack of lower limbs during a panel or two, but these are few and far between. Joe Caramagna’s energetic sound effects are also flawless; they add to the action in the splash pages and urgency during tense moments. Likewise, Edgar Delgado’s bright coloring helps the issue, particularly during the more touching moments. Jean Grey’s faces stand out in particular, especially when she gets to use her powerful telekinesis to great effect. Delgado’s sickly green hue in the Omega World landscape will also make readers feel the uneasy setting.
Overall, the “Apocalypse Wars” has been lackluster, and “Extraordinary X-Men” #10 doesn’t do much to maintain interest in the mini-event. While the writing and art are great at times, it isn’t quite enough to keep the series on people’s pull list for much longer.