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CSBG Archive

A Year of Cool Comic Book Moments – Day 44

Here is the latest cool comic book moment in our year-long look at one cool comic book moment a day (in no particular order whatsoever)! Here‘s the archive of the moments posted so far!

Today we continue “Catch Phrase” week! Each day we’ll examine the first time that various comic book characters used their most famous catch phrase!

Today we look at a Wolverine catch phrase that really was very cool when it first came out!


There once was a time when people sat around and said, “Man, there are not enough comics out there featuring Wolverine!”

So Marvel addressed this by a cool four-issue mini-series in 1982 by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller.

Cool cover, huh?

Well, the first page of the first issue delivered Wolverine’s signature catch phrase…

For a time, this was awesome!!


It’s true.

I was 10 when that comic came out and I thought it was about the most bad ass thing anyone had ever written.

There once was a time when people sat around and said, “Man, there are not enough comics out there featuring Wolverine!”

I think that’s actually Marvel’s mission statement at the moment.

And the shark was jumped.

I hated the covers. I hated the series. I hated Wolverine happily ever after.

Next thing you know, everybody is turning Japanese, their back-stories are being infested with Ninja, and Kitty becomes a Shadowcat, Decades later we end up with tubby, faceless, emo Ninja Hawkeye.

Hate! Hate! Hate!

10 years later or so Wolverine would start referring to himself as the ol’ Canucklehead all the time and I thought it was about the worst thing anyone had ever written.

Now Wolverine has a son and is from a race of mutated dog people of which he is the fabled dark haired one who is destined to fight the light haired one all throughout time when he isn’t fighting the angel of death so his healing factor will work or something and I didn’t know how good I had it. Pretty much my entire knowledge of Wolverine these days comes from Paul O’Brien’s reviews at The X-Axis.

Wow. How things can start out so simple, giving the fans what they want, more Wolverine. Then it snowballs into the freakshow that is now the current Marvel universe.

“I’m the best there is at what I do. But what I do isn’t very nice.”, could he be refering to corrupting every story he is shoved into with no purpose other to spice up sales? I think so.

I’m just going to pretend that’s THE Larry King up there.

I was hoping for “Snikkt, bub”, or possibly “Fastball Special”.

“…But what I do isn’t very nice” sounds terrible. Just terrible.

Still have a fond place in my heart for that story. So sad to see how far Wolvie has fallen.

But what strikes me most now….whatever happened to THAT Frank Miller? Just think of what the series would look like if he were to try to pencil it today.

I actually read the catchphrase first in the first issue of the regular series. I remember getting chills down my spine. These days Wolverine seems to shout that out on every posible occasion. It doesn’t matter if he’s kickin butt, sitting on the john or playing pattycake, you’ll hear that catchphrase.

“…But what I do isn’t very nice” sounds terrible. Just terrible.

Jason Aaron’s character Red Crow from Scalped said basically the same thing, save before that is: “I’m an honourable man but what I do …”

This is after he killed some people and put a Mob enforced enforcer in jail for some really nasty s**t.

Am I the only one who, even back then, wasn’t impressed with Wolverine’s catchphrase? It always sounded stilted to my ears, like someone was trying too hard to sound badass.

Yep, agreed. It’s Chris Claremont (super-nerdy) trying to sound edgy and cool.

And failing, as usual.

I’m not saying I disagree 27 years later as an adult, but as I say in my original post to my 10 year old ears it was so cool!

That original mini is cool. Yes, it’s full of Claremontisms, but it’s not like today, when it seems like half the industry is based on Claremontisms. And it`s got awesome Frank Miller art, and ninjas.

It got to the core of Wolverine`s character, something that`s overlooked now because he’s the Universal Super Bad Ass: Trying to fight against his base nature to become a better man.

It may get lost in a sea of oversaturation and repetition, but that series was good stuff.

I was so eager to see this when the first issue came out, so excited to buy it, so sure that it absolutely had to be awesome, and eventually so disappointed. Compared to the Wolverine I’d known in X-Men, and compared to Miller’s prior work on Daredevil, this felt over-hyped, overblown, and ultimately kind of empty, imho.

In the midst of all of this, we’ve had the most enjoyable 11-12 issues of Wolverine in decades with First Class and the second most enjoyable in Manifest Destiny and next year Jason Aaron gets an ongoing so yeah, I don’t mind too much Wolverine if the stuff is actually good.

The catchphrase is still relevent today. He is the best there is at what he does. Since what he does is make gratuitous guest appearances and that isn’t very nice.

I’m still waiting for a good solo Wolverine story.

I like the current future Wolverine story arc by Millar and McNiven a lot. My favorite Wolverine solo story is probably Barry Windsor Smith’s Weapon X. (Does that count as a Wolverine story ?) I agree that there are very few good solo stories of him.

Oh yeah, and the mini wasn’t super but the poster was awesome and I still have it up.

It was from a time Frank Miller could actually draw worth a damn.


February 22, 2009 at 6:53 pm

Great character. The best thing about how often he’s written is that if you’re not a neurotic, you can easily ignore everything you don’t like and be left over with some of the best stories from Marvel.

I liked the Archie Goodwin/John Byrne arc from later in this series, which starts in Madripoor and ends in some Central American banana republic. La Bandera was cool!

Tubby Hawkeye = Trick Shot. :-)

Awesome series. Good stuff by Claremont and Miller.

That was a classic period for Marvel. They had several great ideas and over the years they stopped being as innovative or creative. I’m not sure if they’re playing it too safe and just wanting to re-hash the old, successful stuff or if their writers are that void of good ideas. Needless to say, it has been a long time since I bought a Marvel or DC comic. It almost seems I have most of them…or the stories anyway because they’re just re-hashing 20+ year old ideas.

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