Home > Marvel Comics > New Excalibur #16

New Excalibur #16

February 11, 2007

Quick Rating: Good
Title: Fallen Friend Part 1
Rating: A

One of the team goes down – in a most unexpected way.

Writer: Chris Claremont
Pencils: Scot Eaton
Inks: John Dell
Colors: A. Crossley
Letters: Tom Orzechowski
Editors: Nick Lowe & Andy Schmidt
Cover Art: Salvador Larroca
Publisher: Marvel Comics

The team gets called in to stop a bank heist – and the crooks are packing some pretty heavy hardware. After a heated battle, one of the team winds up down… but it’s not who you expect.

I was actually surprised at how much I liked this issue. The first half seemed a pretty run-of-the-mill fight sequence that (once again) stirred up one of this series’ most persistent, annoying unanswered questions. Then we get a totally unexpected twist and one of the characters winds up fighting to stay alive. Claremont also manages to bring up some pretty valid questions that stir in drama naturally… when you’re dealing with mutants, what if their anatomy isn’t what the doctors are used to? How do they treat someone if they’ve got a different body structure? What if they wind up making things worse?

The last few pages are also a pretty big shocker – I’ve got to wonder exactly how far Claremont is willing to take the long-term implications of this character’s condition. I really don’t recall anyone ever trying a story quite like this one before, and it’s got me intrigued.

Scot Eaton and John Dell make for a pretty good art team, as well. They’ve got a pretty standard look, but a solid one, and the emotions they manage to pack into the faces on the last few pages are simply fantastic.

This issue is an intriguing surprise – certainly better than much of Claremont’s recent work.

Rating: 7/10

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