The Dark Ride Part 2 – Judgement Day
Credits: Jeph Loeb (writer), Steve Skroce (penciler), Sellers/Lowe/Barta/Carani/Ryan
/Branch (inkers), Mike Thomas (colors), Richard Starkings/Comicraft (lettering)
Cable, Domino, Storm, and Caliban travel to Egypt to find the Dark Riders. Caliban tracks down one of Tusk’s Underlings, who says that he’s the only one who escaped after Tusk Prime and his brothers were defeated by the new Dark Riders. The Underling leads the team through the desert where they’re attacked by the Dark Riders and Tusk Prime, who has actually joined the new team. Cable again uses his telekinetic powers in the battle, while Storm undoes the sandstorm created by Hurricane. The Dark Riders teleport the team away to the town of Akkaba. Cable says that this was the birthplace of Apocalypse. In Cable’s future, Apocalypse slaughtered everyone in the town after Cable and his rebels settled there. Cable’s distraught to see the town massacred once more in the present day. When a man in an armored suit appears, Cable thinks that it’s Apocalypse, but he reveals himself to be Cable’s son, Tyler.
Cable says that can’t teleport, or “bodyslide”, since the Professor left Earth in X-Force #39.
It’s another fight-chase-fight issue. The action scenes aren’t as monotonous as I was expecting, but there is one annoying moment where Storm suddenly decides to stop a giant sandstorm after implying a few pages earlier that she couldn’t because it was unnaturally created. Basically, she can’t stop it until the plot decides to let her to, which doesn’t work. Loeb tries to develop Cable’s character by having Storm teach him about the bond the X-Men share, but this seems like ground Nicieza’s already covered in X-Force. Loeb is able to give all of the characters distinctive voices, though, which helps to make the book feel less generic than it has before. Bringing back Tyler as a villain is a good move, since he’s a character that relates uniquely to Cable, and he’s been underused in this series so far. Skroce’s art has a few rough patches, probably due to the six inkers, but I enjoy most of what he’s doing. His fight scenes are energetic and the storytelling and layouts work pretty well.