Wolverine and the X-Men #35
Writer: Jason Aaron
Pencils: Nick Bradshaw
Inks: Walden Wong
Colorists: Laura Martin w/ Guru eFX, Thomas Mason, Matt Milla, & Sotocolor
Review by Joey Braccino
Over 2 years worth of storytelling reaches its climactic conclusion in Wolverine and the X-Men #35!!! The “Hellfire Saga” has consumed the summer for Jason Aaron’s band of merry mutants, bring every story beat—from Broo’s devolution to Idie’s “betrayal” to Kade Kilgore’s new Hellfire Academy to Husk and Toad’s romance to Wolverine’s discomfort with his new role—to an action-packed, emotionally resonant resolution. Really, the only thing missing from this jampacked conclusion is Doop… but Aaron teases another fan-favorite character in an epilogue cliffhanger…
Wolverine and the X-Men #35 is packed cover-to-cover with superheroic fisticuffs, krakoa smackdowns, and at least three “YES YES YES!” moments. I won’t go into specifics because spoilers, but Jason Aaron really brings his A-Game with the ending to his “Hellfire Saga,” which makes for a comic filled with humor, action, and strong characterization. Quentin Quire, Idie, and the Toad/Husk story get some especially fantastic beats this issue, and the ending to the book really feels like a legitimate denouement heading into the “Battle of the Atom” crossover.
Nick Bradshaw has become the quintessential W&XM artist. Yes, Chris Bachalo kickstarted the series with his innovative lay-outs and distinct style, but its Bradshaw’s animated aesthetic that brought the quirkiness and novelty to match Aaron’s “strangest heroes of them all” mission for the book. I mean, I can’t see anybody but Bradshaw drawing a character named Snot literally blasting lasers of snot at people. Literally. It’s too much. Walden Wong’s (what a name!) solid inks maintain that animated, cartoon linework while the army of colorists fill the page from gutter-to-gutter with vibrant pinks, oranges, and reds and rich blues and greens. Brilliant.
Buy. Jason Aaron ends the first meta-arc of his Wolverine and the X-Men series. Character arcs and story threats from the last two years come to a head in this conclusion to the “Hellfire Saga,” and its nice to see a proper resolution to all those moving parts. Aaron and Bradshaw have been telling one heck of a story—one that returns the X-Men to their “strangest teens” roots—and I can’t wait to see where the book goes after “Battle of the Atom!!!”