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Some Comments On Wolverine Saga (And Some Actual Wolverine Comics, Too)

You can’t really review a plot synopsis with photoshopped panels from old comics distributed to comic shops for free, in order to inform people about Wolverine’s convoluted history (and possibly scare them off of ever reading another coming again), because there’s a new movie coming out. Especially when you skimmed the damn thing.

That said, I’m going to do a post on it anyway.

The main thing that jumped out at me was that Romulus is to blame for every bad thing that’s ever happened in Wolverine’s life. Yes, this guy. They’re still going with that. I mean, I tend to try and ignore everything that Jeph Loeb and Daniel Way write that I don’t hear about second hand (and being mocked). So, it kind of slipped my mind that they were still doing that whole thing where some sort of werewolf was part of a conspiracy withing many conspiracies against Wolverine..

Anyway, you can tell Romulus is totally an organic arch villain for Wolverine, because he was responsible for all of the horrible things in Wolvie’s life, including most of his dead girlfriends. That’s irrefutable! Because if you try, Marvel will have your girlfriend killed. Of course, for many of that’s a hollow threat.

Speaking of that, Wolverine has more dead girlfriends than Daredevil. At least by my unscientific method of thinking “hey, Wolverine has more dead girlfriends than Dardevil” while flipping through this thing and then committing to that as an unshakable belief. They sort of make the comparison in the text, because Wolverine kept bumping in to DD’s ex-girlfriends for a while in the ’90s (one of whom was dead and should have stayed that way. And I’m not talking about Zombie Karen Page).

They reference the Peter Milligan written, Darwyn Cooke drawn Wolverine/Doop team up mini-series briefly. For some reason, that makes me very happy. That’s a part of Wolverine’s convoluted continuity that I liked! Awesome! Maybe the Pink Lady will show up in the new movie!

Speaking of Darwyn Cooke, man, a lot of top shelf artists worked on Wolverine comics over the years. I mean, Mike Mignola even did a prestige format one-shot years ago where Wolvie fought an Apocalypse clone or something in the Savage Land! Of course, that was back when Marvel was just cranking out Wolverine comics. They’re so much more restrained these days, like they don’t want to overexpose the character or something. It’s like they’re leaving money on the table! I don’t think I could have their integrity.

Finally, speaking of Wolverine comics, Jason Aaron’s two recent Wolverine arcs (Get Mystique and Manifest Destiny/Pander to Chris Sims) are pretty damn good. I was going to do a whole review on them and the recent Ghost Rider with Smokey and the Bandit and Lone Wolf McQuade references, but:

A. Dean Trippe beat me to pointing out the radness of the latter.
B. I pretty much summed up all my critical thoughts on the former.

The fact that Aaron and Ron Garney (the creative team on Get Mystique) are doing a Wolverine ongoing means I’ll have to start buying that. Thanks a lot, everyone involved! Now I’ll be part of the problem of more Wolvie and less Rocket Raccoon! I’ll never be friends with Bill Reed now, despite the fact that we have like 90% similar taste.

29 Comments

I was shocked that The Jungle Adventure was a Walt Simonson-written Mike Mignola-drawn piece of crap! I didn’t think it was possible!

The Wolverine/Doop book sounds neat. I enjoyed Wolverine’s appearance in Milligan’s X-Force #120–on which he was on the cover saying, “Ya know, I’m only doing this to boost sales.”

So what’s your idea on who the mysterious man behind Weapon X was in Barry Windsor-Smith’s Weapon X? Evolution was probably the single worst comic I’ve ever read in my life, and the first 20 issues of Origins were mediocre at best, but Romulus himself is a neat character.

How dare you call Romulus neat. He is anything BUT neat.

I don’t know if you can really call Romulus one thing or another as an actual character, as we have barely seen him (her?) at all.

That said, the CONCEPT of Romulus we’ve seen enough for one to gauge a reasonable opinion (I lean heavily towards the “I don’t like it” side of it).

As I said on the forums once:

Peter David will take over for Daniel Way and reveal it was Nightmare all along. And then Silver Fox will wash up on an island and fight Dragon Man.

I’m still predicting Wolverine turns out to be Romulus and we get a splash page of Wolverine on his knees screaming, “NNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!”

All week, people at my shop have been looking at Wolverine Saga and asking “what’s this?”
My favorite response is that Marvel decided this new, exciting young character of theirs was going to become a major player in the coming year, appearing a lot more, and in case you missed what’s happened with him, they put out a recap of his obviously under-read past adventures.

I always figured Apocalypse was the mystery man in Weapon X. Then again, BWS didn’t do much to address it, so he probably wanted to leave the door wide open to another writer. Figure it could be anyone from Xavier to Romulus to Howard the Duck.

“I was shocked that The Jungle Adventure was a Walt Simonson-written Mike Mignola-drawn piece of crap! I didn’t think it was possible!’

You shut your filthy mouth (fingers?). That thing is ridiculous and awesome.

I hadn’t paid any attention to the character for years, though of course you can scarcely avoid Wolverine if you read any other Marvel comics. I enjoy the basic schtick of Wolverine as a character, but I had no idea what they’d done with the backstory. So I read the free comic that the nice man at the comic book store put in my bag.

Read is kind of the wrong word. Gawked with amazement as the characterization equivalent of a forty-car pile-up on the freeway unfolded before my eyes. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything as disastrous in terms of developing a popular character in a comic-book universe. This makes pre-Byrne-reboot Superman, with his zillions of odd supporting characters, weird gimmicks, Silver Age wackiness, look as simple and unadorned as a newborn baby.

Where´s Mephisto when you need him?

I was entertained that in detailing his history that so much of it was based on comics that came out in the last 5 years. Sorta skimmed over the 20 or so years of X-Men and Wolverine comics, just to bring us up to 2003, and really delve into it.

I read it, and I read Marvel comics, and at the end of it I was like “When the hell did all this happen?”

And I’m sure the day will come when we learn that Jenkins’ “Origins” is no longer part of Wolverine continuity.

Wolverine’s pre-Weapon X history should never have been revealed — or rather it should never have been made known to him as it was at the end of House of M. It made him a much more tragic figure to never know his own past.

Until they start referencing all the Romulus nonsense in books like Wolverine: First Class then you know it doesn’t REALLY matter to the character. The simpler explanations will always win out in the long run.

I bought the Wolverine comic, but am going to wait to read it until I see the movie. I can usually tell how BAD a movie is if I read the comic afterward.

Ralph DeLuca
Madison, NJ

What’s crazy is how much of the backstory was added relatively recently.

I pretty thoroughly loathe the crap shoehorned into poor Logan’s backstory for the last five years (since Greg Rucka left, basically) as well as his characterization under Millar, Aaron, Way and others. I’m pretty much ONLY buying First Class and his non-continuity-driven one-shots, plus his appearances in the occasional alternate-continuity books (Marvel Adventures Avengers, the upcoming X-Men Forever, etc.). On the plus side, that’s just enough Wolverine for me since I’m not getting the ongoing mainstream 616 present-day series at all.

Romulus IS a bad idea. Not only is the idea that ONE villain was behind ALL of Wolverine’s tragedies is hard to swallow, it also diminishes those stories as well as reducing the suspension of disbelief further.

By the way, is The Pink Lady based on some sort of American cultural In-Joke I don’t get? I can’t help but feel that she is. A pun on Think Mink? A sexual reference? She just doesn’t make much sense as a character. Then again, it WAS a book with Doop in it…

Probably not Pink Lady and Jeff…

the Mignola Wolverine comic is awesome!!! i found it in a half off bin a about 9 years ago and snatched it up quick. great stuff and largely unknown.

Wolverines history is a mess, and Origins did not help, as i undermined early hints, especailly about the relationship with Sabertooth.

I notice of late he has been pushed back in the x-men (other then the claw squad), but with the return of the Pheonix, we will end up with the wolverjean storyline again, this is a bas thing, the scott emma story will have enough meat with out bring in a romance that has never happened.

I think Marvel missed a trick by not revisting skrullverine durring secret invasion as a way of tidying logan up a bit.

The mess of Wolverine’s back story, and the fact that so much of it seems to have just happened in the past few years, really drives home the fact that the only two stories the Big 2 seem capable of telling nowadays is one where there’s the “shocking” death of a character, or one where they add “previously unknown” elements to a characters past. I wish more of the writer’s would just try to tell a new story. If you keep shoehorning things into the past in order to be shocking, well, you end up with Wolverine being a Wolfman.

Naturally, Wolverine will turn out to be Remus. They’ll find a way.

“The main thing that jumped out at me was that Romulus is to blame for every bad thing that’s ever happened in Wolverine’s life. ”

So he’s Wolverine’s Norman Osborn? And I’ve never heard of him? Since when did important things happen to Wolverine in his own books? I thought that only happenned in the X-Men (and – even then – mostly just durring crossovers).

Wait- so if Romulus is responsible for everything bad about Wolverine’s life and Mr. Sinister is responsible for everything bad that happens to the X-Men… what happens when they meet?

“Dibs on making him fight his teammates!”

“I totally called killing his next girlfriend!”

“Alright, but I get to kill the previously unrevealed buddy that he owes a debt of honor to. In Japan.”

No no no… Romulus will turn out to BE Sinister, who never knew why he’d wake up with no memory of his actions every time there was a full moon — until now! (Dah-dah-DAAAAHNNN!!!)

Which of course will lead to the Dracula/Sinister War since Dracula already is an enemy of Apocalypse, only it’ll be an oh-so-trendy vampire/werewolf war too, thus marketable to the crossover mutant/horror genre crowd.

@ David Branson: I know you’re joking but that probably sounds way better than what the eventual reveal will actually be.

Yeah, what is with keeping up that Romulus crap? Specifically that “Wolverine and every other mutant with Wolverine’s hair did not descend from humans” crap? I thought they were going to totally forget about all that, and good riddance. Although I figured that about Daken, too, who is going to be in at least THREE upcoming books (Dark Wolverine, Dark Avengers, Dark X-Men . . . and that looks even stupider once you put them all next to each other).

And apart from the other silliness, basic family trees don’t work that way. Unless all the members on all the sides of every mutant with Logan-hair are weirdly inbred with each other, then pretty much everyone on Earth would have some wolf-person blood in them at this point. If Wolfsbane is one of the silly wolf people then either her mother, or Reverend Craig, or both would have it, and so on all the way back.

They also just plain weren’t paying attention to pretty much his entire published history by dragging Sasquatch into all this. This is perhaps par for the course, but still, just because he’s furry isn’t enough to make him a wolf-person. Unless of course Tannaraq is a wolf-person who became a demi-god or something, which would make me twitch.

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