Tuesday, December 18, 2007


#66 (Hama/Texeira/Biasi/Brosseau/Buccellato) – Professor Xavier tries to remove Wolverine’s memory blocks, but the attempt only drives Wolverine closer to madness. Wolverine convinces himself that it’s 1968 and he’s on a mission to kill a “Terry Adams”. These issues have a dark surreal quality to them that’s really brought to life by Texeira’s ability to alternate between photorealism and Sinkiewicz-style insanity. Hama is also able to make Wolverine’s past as a CIA agent seem like a credible aspect of the character’s history and not just tacked-on backstory. There is some odd continuity, though. In issue #65, John Wraith allows Wolverine to bury Silver Fox as a favor for “Terry Adams’. Wolverine says he doesn’t remember, Wraith says he can’t forget. Just one issue later, Wraith says he doesn’t know anything about Terry Adams, except that the mission was scrubbed. It’s a strange backpedal. And just to nitpick, both 1967 and 1968 are the dates given for Wolverine’s flashback in different parts of the story.

#67 (Hama/Texeira/Palmiotti/Brosseau/Buccellato) – Maverick tells the X-Men that “Terry Adams” is a place, not a person. Government operatives couldn’t pronounce the name of the Soviet space station Tyuratam, so they called it “Terry Adams” instead. It’s a nice twist that also reminds me of the turns in Hama’s G. I. Joe stories. There’s an extended sequence with a nearly dead Wolverine crossing the desert that’s fairly disturbing and adds an even darker element to the story.

#68 (Hama/Texeira/Biasi/Brosseau/Buccellato) – Wolverine finally remembers that his aborted mission was to kill the Russian astronaut Epsilon Red in 1968. He discovers Epsilon Red and his psychic daughter in present day Tyuratam. Wolverine doesn’t go through with his mission, and Red’s daughter unblocks many of his memories. Marvel made a big deal about Wolverine finally getting his memories back after the House of M event, which lead me to believe that none of the creators involved knew about this storyline. However, this issue is clear that some of Wolverine’s memories are implants on top of implants, and that some of the blocks were placed by his own subconscious and can’t be removed. It’s possible to reconcile both stories. It’s interesting that this is the last time Hama really focused on Wolverine’s past or hidden memories during his run. It seems like this was really his final word on the subject. Today, there’s an entire spinoff dedicated to Wolverine’s secret past! As a finale to this specific storyline, this issue is a little bit of letdown. The story has a long creepy setup, then introduces a super-powered Russian astronaut in a goofy costume, gives the guy a happy ending in space, and then reveals that his pregnant wife was murdered by Sabretooth years ago. All of the Russian super-astronaut stuff seems way out of place with the rest of the arc.

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