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All-New Wolverine #3

4

Laura is determined to protect the clones of her but Taskmaster has something to say about it.

It's been great seeing X-23 in her own title once again. Now that she's taken the mantle of Wolverine, she's determined to live up to Logan's memory and stick to her new code. She recently discovered that three clones of her were created by Alchemax Genetics and have been causing problems. Laura agreed to find them in the hopes she can put a stop to their actions before Alechmax's security kill them. It appeared she was about to succeed until Alechemax soldiers arrived along with Taskmaster.

One of the most anticipated moments in this issue was the idea of Wolverine and Taskmaster fighting each other. Taskmaster has the ability to to mimic anyone's fighting style and can adapt his during a fight. As great as it was seeing them here, the fight went by way too quickly. We know Wolverine is going to be written as an incredible and unpredictable fighter but the fight should have lasted longer than it did. Perhaps Taskmaster was caught off guard by the claw in her foot. Let's hope we see a rematch at some point.

Laura's decision to not simply kill her opponents adds another layer to her. We've see characters that kill too easily. It's more interesting to see one that has the ability to decimate their opponents but chooses to find other means to end a battle. Another character questions how Wolverine can be a pacifist but as Laura quickly points out, she has no problem beating and slicing her opponents to end a fight. Tom Taylor captures Laura's essence and struggle nicely. Despite her decision not to kill, you can see how easily she can intimidate others with just a look.

This is driven home with the art by David Lopez and David Navarrot. You can feel what Laura is going through simply by the look in her eyes. The brief fight looked great and I still marvel over how the different X-23 clones each looked unique with their own personalities despite being copies of Laura. The fight is taken to the streets and you have to love seeing a high speed car chase surrounded by big explosions. If you've seen the cover to the next issue, you know who Laura will meet up with next. It makes an interesting and unexpected pairing.

As X-23 takes on the mantle of Wolverine, we're seeing her grow as a character. Tom Taylor is putting her in charge of her own destiny. Wolverine is a serious and deadly character and it's fascinating to see her use violence but refuse to resort to simply killing her enemies. David Lopez and David Navarrot's art is great and they give us plenty of cool-looking scenes. The fight with Taskmaster and the car chase almost felt rushed. Maybe because I'm enjoying the series, I just wish the issue could have more pages to flesh these moments out further. ALL-NEW WOLVERINE has become one of my favorite titles under the All-New, All-Different Marvel banner. I just can't get enough of this book.

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Aliltron

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It was a good issue but I agree, I was extremely let down by the fight with Taskmaster, that's what I was really looking forward to.

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Ambaryerno

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Definitely agree the Taskmaster fight was anticlimactic and could have gone longer. It leaves him almost feeling like he was thrown in just to have a recognizable face for Laura to beat up and establish some cred (Taskmaster is one of the first TRULY major opponents outside the X-books she's fought). OTOH, Tasky CAN be too arrogant for his own good, so it's not exactly OOC for him to so grossly underestimate an opponent.

And I have to say that Gabby may be stealing the show so far. She's an absolutely ADORABLE little killing machine. The bit with gathering up that guy's fingers just in case he DOES play the piano so he can have them reattached was just awesome, as was her shit-eating grin when she revealed they all have body armor.

Also:

"Seat belt. Now."

The underwhelming confrontation of Taskmaster aside, it was a great issue. Hopefully we do get a bit more than a glorified cameo from Strange next issue.

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Guardiandevil83

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@aliltron: Same. But At least we know he would have whooped Laura is she wasn't so good at taking beatings

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beaubier

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It was a solid issue. Laura reminded me a bit of Morgan from TWD here, not that I'm complaining. Her direction makes perfect sense for her. I agree that some of the action sequences seemed rushed, but I like how we're seeing how capable, analytical and badass Laura is, not to mention her maturity in dealing with this situation she's in. It's a very big contrast from what we've seen Hopeless write so far. On that note, it was great that we didn't see any Angel this issue.

The clones are kind of making me think of Orphan Black meets the replicants in Blade Runner. Instead of "Save Cosima!" and the mystery of the Leda/Castor project etc it's "Save Gabby/Bellona/Zelda" and the mystery of Alchemax, lol. In that sense this plot isn't the most original, though at least Taylor is keeping it interesting with the great action sequences.

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Ambaryerno

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@beaubier Keep in mind that this plot is one that has actually been building for ten years. People were trying to clone Laura herself since she was first introduced in the books; It was Rice's plan from the start to create more clones to sell, and it's why the Facility has been trying to get her back ever since she escaped. There's also the Hooded Woman from the Liu series, who it would be AWESOME if Taylor connects Alchemax to her (after all, SOMEONE sold them the genetic samples they used to create the Sisters, she's probably THE biggest dangling plot thread from the series, and Taylor HAS said he'd love to revisit some of those old plots).

So by that token the comparison is a little unfair, as Laura's story started down that path long before Orphan Black was even a thing.

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beaubier

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Edited By beaubier

@ambaryerno said:

@beaubier Keep in mind that this plot is one that has actually been building for ten years. People were trying to clone Laura herself since she was first introduced in the books; It was Rice's plan from the start to create more clones to sell, and it's why the Facility has been trying to get her back ever since she escaped. There's also the Hooded Woman from the Liu series, who it would be AWESOME if Taylor connects Alchemax to her (after all, SOMEONE sold them the genetic samples they used to create the Sisters, she's probably THE biggest dangling plot thread from the series, and Taylor HAS said he'd love to revisit some of those old plots).

So by that token the comparison is a little unfair, as Laura's story started down that path long before Orphan Black was even a thing.

It's not the part about the existence of the clones themselves that made me think about the similarity, but rather the reveal that the clones are dying. If it turns out that it wasn't just a fluke and it was a built in fail safe, then the similarity is even stronger.

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_Vex_

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I have always been a fan of X-23 and love that she has her own title again. I understand that she's a clone of Wolverine and that is who she is essentially, but I'm tired of that being the core of her story. At this point I'm thinking, "We get that she's a clone, do another bit!" I'm tired of her story revolving around this despite already being passed it.

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NimaMindTricks

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The taskmaster fight was garbage. He's an expert assassin, one of the best at what he does, but he couldn't tell that the armored clones he shot weren't actually shot at all as he's standing over their bodies? What? Huh?

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Ambaryerno

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The taskmaster fight was garbage. He's an expert assassin, one of the best at what he does, but he couldn't tell that the armored clones he shot weren't actually shot at all as he's standing over their bodies? What? Huh?

Hasn't Tasky always been a bit arrogant? Or maybe he WAS using armor-piercing rounds but the girls' armor was much heavier than he expected.

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entropy_aegis

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Tony jobs again? and people think Croc sucks SMH.

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Ambaryerno

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@entropy_aegis said:

Tony jobs again? and people think Croc sucks SMH.

Considering it a bit more, I think this is a case where it actually has some logic behind it:

Taskmaster relies heavily on his ability to learn his opponents' moves by observation, which certainly gives him a tremendous advantage against opponents who use traditional, codified martial arts. He habitually runs into problems with characters whose fighting styles are more unpredictable, such as Deadpool.

He's never encountered Laura before, and while she's certainly known to be trained in multiple codified martial arts, which Taskmaster almost certainly absorbed from other practitioners, she's also unconventional in a lot of ways. Her fighting style owes as much to Parkour due to her speed, agility, and size as it does to traditional martial arts, but it's most significant that Laura primarily uses the claws in her hands when she's fighting, and only rarely utilizes her foot claws. Look back through all her fight scenes throughout her history, and she habitually saves them for the most advantages and unexpected moment.

Even assuming Taskmaster prepared for this mission by watching whatever footage of Laura in action he could find, unless that video include her using the foot claws he'd have no way to anticipate the means in which she employs him. Especially because most characters make the assumption that she DOESN'T HAVE THEM (a funny line of dialogue during the Trial of Jean grey crossover had Drax asking her where HE could get a pair of boots with built-in knives before she responds that they're "built in"). This indicates how rarely she employs them, so it's highly likely that they wouldn't have been part of Alchemax's brief.

So when Laura, per habit, held back with her foot claws until she had the proper opening, Taskmaster had nothing to prepare himself for them. And when she got her opening it was a devastating one.

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NimaMindTricks

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@nimamindtricks said:

The taskmaster fight was garbage. He's an expert assassin, one of the best at what he does, but he couldn't tell that the armored clones he shot weren't actually shot at all as he's standing over their bodies? What? Huh?

Hasn't Tasky always been a bit arrogant? Or maybe he WAS using armor-piercing rounds but the girls' armor was much heavier than he expected.

I don't understand what that means. They don't have a healing factor, if armor piercing round hit them, Ray Charles would have seen them.

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CurrentThor2015

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@ambaryerno: Thank you for explaining that, the other people on this thread dont seem to understand this about Laura.

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JamesSpiring

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@aliltron said:

It was a good issue but I agree, I was extremely let down by the fight with Taskmaster, that's what I was really looking forward to.

It was so short, pretty much the whole damn thing was in the preview!

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Aliltron

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@aliltron said:

It was a good issue but I agree, I was extremely let down by the fight with Taskmaster, that's what I was really looking forward to.

It was so short, pretty much the whole damn thing was in the preview!

So true

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UltronMk7

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When this book was 1st announced I thought I wouldn't be picking it up. Wow was I wrong. Really enjoying this book. It's becoming 1 of my fav ANAD Marvel books. X 23 is such an interesting character when done right. She looks awesome in the Wolverine costume. The art on this book is fantastic. The 1st double issue pulled me in and I immediately added it to my pull list. While some of the Avengers titles have been a dissapointment, this book has been a pleasant surprise. Can't wait for issue 4.