All New X-Men #11
Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Pencils by Stuart Immonen
Inks by Wade Von Grawbadger
Colors by Marte Gracia
Review by Adam Shaw
The cover of this issue teases that one of the original X-Men will leave to join Cyclops and his group of X-Men, but if you are a reader of the complementing Uncanny X-Men, there isn’t really any surprise. The events of this issue of All New X-Men take place slightly before the last issue of Uncanny.
Even though the cover teases that someone will leave, it is not really what takes center stage this issue. The two opposing groups of X-Men exchange words and threats and a lot of mutant ideology nonsense is slung around. It’s quite easy to get bogged down by everything being said and going on, and while all of it is important, what really stands out is the developing relationship between Jean and Kitty.
Bendis is really working wonders, and turning Kitty Pryde into one of my favorite characters in comics right now. I admit I haven’t read much X-Men in the past, but I am quickly understanding why she is the headmistress of the Jean Grey School for Higher Learning. She’s compassionate, strong, and can really put her foot down. The scenes with Kitty and Jean really steal the show for me.
There is a lot of frantic and heated conversation happening in the first half of the issue, and the art team does a fantastic job of bringing that tension to life. Bendis can write lines and lines of dialog, but let’s give Immonen, Grawbadger, and Gracia a round of applause for bringing it to life. The layouts don’t feel stale, and help to speed up the pace and add to the frantic atmosphere. On the flip side, they also help to slow down the issue at the right times.
Buy. There is a reason that All New X-Men is near the top of my read pile with each release, and issue #11 is a perfect example of why that is. It hits all the beats, brings the heat, a pinch of fun, has its share of badasses, and still has time for a little tenderness.