Wood's Wolverine is "Alpha and Omega"

Quentin Quire, the purple-haired telepath who once led a student revolt at the Xavier School, returned to shake up mutant alliances in the recent "X-Men: Schism" miniseries. Even as he unwillingly begins a new life under Logan's tutelage in this month's "Wolverine and the X-Men" #1, it appears Quire has plans to further assert his intellect and power.

Launching in January, "Wolverine and the X-Men: Alpha and Omega" sees the youth in revolt launch a full-scale attack on the new faction's leader. The five-issue miniseries is written by "DMZ," "Northlanders," and incoming "Conan the Barbarian" scribe Brian Wood with art by Mark Brooks and Roland Boschi. Comic Book Resources caught up with Wood for a quick chat about the series.

"Wolverine and the X-Men: Alpha and Omega" debuts not long after the big shakeup in "Schism," which saw Logan reject Cyclops' vision for the future of mutantkind and return to Westchester to establish the Jean Grey School for Gifted Youngsters. Quentin Quire, also known as Kid Omega, traveled with Wolverine as a captive -- as of this writing, "Wolverine and the X-Men" #1 has just been released and it's unclear what Wolverine's plans for the notoriously rebellious student might be. Already, though, the January-debuting series will see Wolverine contend with Quentin Quire for control of the school.

"Logan and Quentin square off for sure, but its not the type of conflict you might be guessing at," Wood told CBR News. "This is pretty much a one-on-one type of battle, with Armor caught in the middle -- and it's a battle that's being waged entirely on Quentin's terms.  I wouldn't say he's interested in Logan's job so much as he's interested in just beating Logan at something.  It's irrational and represents only short term thinking on Quentin's part, but that doesn't make it any less dangerous.  It might actually make it more dangerous."

If "Schism" showed the differences between Cyclops and Wolverine's vision of what the X-Men should be -- Scott Summers envisioning a persistent siege scenario that requires every mutant to be a soldier, Logan striving to restore Xavier's educational goals -- there is an even more fundamental schism between Wolverine's ideals and Kid Omega's. "It's pretty basic: Quentin resents Logan the way any teen resents the immediate authority figure in his life," Wood said. "Logan pissed him off mightily, hauling him into the school against his will, and Quentin is looking to push back.  He's also incredibly smart and incredibly telepathic, and the urge to really bring a world of hurt down on Logan must be intense."

Quire's penchant for telepathic attacks would appear to be at the heart of "Alpha and Omega," but as to what precisely Wolverine is up against in the series, Wood said, "That falls into the category of 'I shouldn't give that bit away.' I will instead direct you to the solicitation copy for this first issue, which talks about the dangers present within Logan's own mind, and leave it at that."

Wolverine, in years past, has been a loner and a bit of a berzerker, but now, with his title role in the new ongoing series "Wolverine and the X-Men," seems to be setting himself up as a teacher and a guardian. However, Wood said the nature of the story he's telling in "Alpha and Omega" does not lend itself to many scenes of Headmaster Logan's duties. "This miniseries represents a relatively short amount of time, perhaps 36 hours, and has a pretty narrow focus.  Logan is entirely occupied in his clashing with Quentin, so the normal functions of the school are not really in this story," Wood told CBR. "But towards the end, in the aftermath, there's a bit of it, a couple scenes that'll bring the events of this miniseries back into the main story.

"There is a fair bit, come to think of it, showing day to day life in the school, for a student," Wood continued. "We see Quentin's dorm room, the library, lots of fellow students in the hallways, classrooms -- the sort of detail that will contrast nicely with the more insane aspects to this story."

Quire has been a rebel since his introduction in Grant Morrison's "New X-Men" run, leading a revolt at the Xavier School that would ultimately lead to the X-Men's founder's resignation. Asked about the character's appeal, Wood said, "What's not to like?"  "It's pure gold to a writer: an over-smart, over-talented kid with a massive attitude and an equally massive level of insecurity driving it all underneath," he continued. "It's fun to write the dialogue that comes out of that guy's mouth, and its a real pleasure to peel back the layers of attitude to get at his core.  In addition, I was given something of a mandate to take Quentin as he is and run with him, to really build and flesh out his character.  He narrates himself, throughout the story, which struck me as something a guy like him might do."

The fact that "Alpha and Omega" sports two regular artists may suggest certain things about the clash between Wolverine and Kid Omega, as Mark Brooks and Roland Boschi's distinctive styles are used to a certain effect. "They are, between them, handling two parts of the story, two narrative streams," Wood said. Beyond this, though, Wood would not comment on how these particular artists complement each other to build the story. "Again, I start to head into spoiler territory," he said.

Find out how the pieces fit together when "Wolverine and the X-Men: Alpha and Omega" hits stores in January.

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