Exploding from the pages of UNCANNY X-FORCE, we return to the Age of Apocalypse and see it's still a completely miserable place you wouldn't want live in or even visit.
If you thought X-Men comics were dark and dreary, you must have forgotten what the Age of Apocalypse was like. While the original series gave a fun different look with a "What If?" approach, this series is shaping up to take the reality to a new level. We were introduced to some 'new' characters in the recent POINT ONE issue and the recent events in UNCANNY X-FORCE #19.1 changes the status quo for some characters.
One of the selling points for me is the fact that Weapon Omega (aka Wolverine) is the big bad villain. We've seen him as the hero countless times and continuing to look at him from this perspective gives us a different take. On the human side, we have a new team, the X-Terminated, made up of familiar characters with the Age of Apocalypse twist.
David Lapham does a great job in making this series feel different from past AoA stories. Despite the dark tones and deaths we've seen before, this issue cranks up the dreariness. Combined with Roberto De La Torre's art, the atmosphere of this world practically oozes off each page.
It always felt like many of the past AoA stories tried to exploit the fact that we'd have different versions of the heroes and villains we know but you don't get that impression here. We do see one non-mutant character with a different take but it comes across as being pretty cool rather than have a forced feeling of trying to give us a radical change from what we know. The character who acts as the narrator here is also one to keep an eye on.
The series has a dark feel to it but thankfully not too dreary that it darkens your day. The members of the X-Terminated aren't really ones that I like. Or at least as far as their normal counterparts are considered. They do have some potential here in the way they're presented. They might be familiar characters but the way the world has shaped them could make them stand out in a new level. I haven't been won over by them by but I can see this easily changing.
There's also the current status of Jean Grey and Sabretooth. Changing who and what they are is a bold move. I can't say I'm thrilled about it but it will definitely shake things up and continue to separate them from their normal counterparts.
Forget what you know about the X-Men. AGE OF APOCALYPSE takes the idea of turning everything upside down but this title is going places the previous mini-series haven't gone. We definitely have a darker feel with desperation seeing the story from the humans' perspective. Lapham and De La Torre work wonders together is giving this series a unique feel that makes it clear this isn't your average X-title. If you like the AoA world or want to see a different take on the X-Universe, this is definitely a series to check out. Other non-mutant characters may pop up as well as we get to see how everyone has been affected by this universe. If you're looking for something new with elements of familiarity, this series won't let you down.