So the combination of Jason Aaron and my unhealthy glee at the Wolverine movie conspired to make me do something no one else has been able to do: buy Wolverine comics. Wolverine: Weapon X 1 & 2, to be exact. This isn’t so much a formal review as simply my thoughts on the books thus far. I’ll keep writing as I keep reading, and I’m still open for suggestions on more Wolvie books to read.
Jason Aaron has a voice. It’s clear and strong and though it shifts from book to book, and from narrator to narrator within those books, it’s still instantly recognizable as his from the first page of the book, and so I’m sold. He never overwrites, but has a knack for the perfect word that leaves me licking my lips and re-reading sentences to myself, out loud, for the sound of them.
I would say that Aaron was born to write Wolverine, the same way perhaps that Garth Ennis says he was born to write the Punisher, but I haven’t read enough of either series to be any sort of convincing authority on the subject, so I’ll just say that he gets it, gets the right amount of swagger and smirk and snarl, which bits of gore to show and which to leave up to the imagination.
Wolverine: Weapon X is a military story, a spy story, not a spandex tale even though the costumes do show up plenty. It’s got an archetypal female reporter heroine as ballsy as its title character and ready to get herself in deep trouble to uncover the story (gee, wonder why I like her?) and a private military contractor called “Blackguard” that probably didn’t need the obvious namecheck for anyone with half a grasp on current events to get the reference.
There’s a bit of the wisecracking noir hero in this Wolverine, and a bit more of the lone cowboy in a Western, even in the sci-fi setting. The Louis L’Amour book Logan’s reading on the plane is only the obvious hat-tip, but this story is nothing so much as a tale of a man riding into a setup where he’s outgunned and out-supplied and has to survive using nothing but his wits.
Ron Garney’s Logan has a face occasionally more animal than human, better suited to howls than to smartass comments. He’s good with the gore and the pacing of the fights is spot-on, shifting from shadow to light to closeup to speeding action shot.
Maybe I’ve finally found a superhero book I can sink my teeth into.