Credits: John Francis Moore (writer), Adam Pollina (penciler), Mark Morales (inker), Comicraft (lettering), Marie Javins & Team Bucce! (colors)
Summary: Risque and Warpath continue to spend time together. Siryn walks in on them kissing and realizes that she is jealous. After Warpath and Risque leave for the city, Siryn and Shatterstar train in the Danger Room. They’re interrupted by a beautiful piano solo. They head to the living room, where they discover Caliban playing Chopin. When he realizes he’s being watched, he suddenly has a seizure. Meanwhile, Warpath and Risque are attacked at a nightclub by Mimic and Blob. After fighting them off, they escape to an apartment owned by Risque’s friend. Risque gives Warpath a drink filled with tranquilizers. When he collapses, she reveals that Mimic and Blob are after her for not completing her job, which was to kidnap him.
Continuity Notes: Risque tells Warpath that her real name is Gloria Munoz. According to the letters page, her father is Cuban and her mother is Seminole. It’s also revealed that her implosion powers only work on inorganic material.
Review: This is the true beginning of John Francis Moore’s run, and it isn’t bad. Virtually the entire issue is dedicated to resolving a dangling plotline from Jeph Loeb’s run, yet it doesn’t read like the halfhearted conclusions you often get when one writer finishes up another’s story before he moves on with his own. Moore has a nice grasp on the characters and he’s able to make the scenes that reestablish Warpath’s relationship with Risque come across as more than just exposition. In an era when writers often didn’t finish their own story arcs, it’s refreshing that Moore actually bothered to offer X-Force readers a genuine conclusion to someone else’s ongoing subplot. Adam Pollina returns as artist, after too many issues of subpar fill-ins. All of his figures and layouts look dynamic, and even though his oversized rendition of the Blob is ridiculous, I still like it. Now, he truly looks freakish instead of just fat. It’s too bad it took so many issues to get to this point, because this book had been struggling for a while.