Spider-Man and the X-Men

Spider-Man and the X-Men
Spider-Man and the X-Men review
  • North American Publisher / ISBN: Marvel - 978-0-7851-9700-3
  • Release date: 2015
  • UPC: 9780785197003
  • Contains adult content?: no
  • Does this pass the Bechdel test?: no
  • Positive minority portrayal?: no
  • CATEGORIES: Humour, Superhero

Wolverine has asked Spider-Man to be a Guidance Counsellor at the Jean Grey School, which in 2015 was where junior mutants were being trained. The existing X-Men may know Spider-Man, but not all like him, and even those who do wonder why a non-mutant should be helping at a mutant school. What none of them know is that Wolverine has sent Spider-Man there with an ulterior purpose, something he shouldn’t perhaps be thinking about on the sample art when there are telepaths around. Wolverine, by the way is dead at the time.

If there’s not much logic to the set-up, neither is there to the remainder, which is slapstick all the way. After an initial failure to engage with a class of young mutants, a joint session in the Danger Room fares no better, and on a trip to the museum the entire class is kidnapped by Stegron the Dinosaur Man and Sauron, who have a plan to revert humanity back to dinosaurs. Elliot Kalan’s plot isn’t meant as serious, but neither is it as funny as intended. The jokes are lame and the dialogue is forced, plus there’s an awful lot of it. You’d expect something better from someone who’s had a long involvement with The Daily Show, known for its sharp observational humour.

Marco Failla has a lot of characters to fit in, and a lot of dialogue to fit around them, so it’s no wonder his panels look incredibly busy without looking greatly dynamic. Given the same problems over the fourth chapter of six, R.B. Silva’s art is a lot clearer, and when Failla returns the cast are even slimmer and more angular.

With the dinosaur plot foiled, the team deal with Mojo, a new Sinister Six formed by Spider-Man’s feeblest villains, and Deathbird combined with a Venom symbiote. Kalan seems to be enjoying himself greatly, but there’s little structure as characters bounce from one crisis to the next, with the suspense down to which of the team will be unmasked as the traitor, and who they’re working for. Don’t hold your breath. While at least there’s some sense made, why Wolverine would ever suspect there’s a traitor in the first place isn’t explained.

This should be a lot more fun than it actually is.