Written by: Jeff Lemire
Art by: Andrea Sorrentino
I feel a lot like I imagine Wolverine feels in this issue. I mean, I knew Amadeus Cho was the new Hulk, but it confused me nevertheless, and his surprise reaction upon meeting Kate Bishop mirrors my surprise concerning most things happening in the Marvel universe. It feels like Lemire managed to graft in some real meta commentary here, and it’s kind of awesome. Sure, it may be brief, but poking fun at the constant state of flux that the big two seem to be stuck in makes me happy. It is a subtle touch, and one I may be reading into too much, but I enjoy it nevertheless.
You know what else is cool about Old Man Logan #2? Andrea Sorrentino’s art. He’s an artist that’s impressed me with everything he’s done, and this book is no exception. His unique layouts are always a treat to see, and as with his Green Arrow work, really serve the story well. His style is perfectly suited to this type of story, and gels extraordinarily well with Lemire’s writing. Plus, the color work, courtesy of Marcelo Maiolo, really serves to bring his art to life. Maiolo’s work here is actually quite important, since shifting color pallets are used to create panels within panels. It’s an awesome effect. It turns the book into an experience, and takes full advantage of the visual nature of the medium.
The plot of Old Man Logan is fairly simplistic. I wouldn’t be surprised if there were a few twists before the end, but for the time being it’s pretty much just Wolverine trying to prevent the future he experienced from occurring. It’s typical time travel fare, which I find to be a bit unfortunate coming from Lemire and Sorrentino, who have, in the past, crafted intricate, epic plots. Regardless, Old Man Logan is more focused on the characters (or, really, character, singular).
We do get a lot of characterization in this issue, between the events in the present day as well as the flash… forwards, I guess? Time travel is a weird thing indeed. Anyways, this is actually a fairly unique take on Wolverine. It’s very much still Logan, but it’s not quite the Logan we knew before he died, nor is it exactly the Logan of Mark Millar and Steve McNiven’s original Old Man Logan. It’s always great when a creative team can explore new ground with a character without it feeling like a gimmick.
The fact that the book alternates between time lines also works in its favor. In addition to helping flesh out Wolverine as a character, they add emotional resonance to the story. The juxtaposition between future (past?) Wolverine and present day Wolverine is executed masterfully. There are also some great moments in the alternate future that serve to build out the world that Logan has come from. All in all, the use of two timelines just adds an additional layer to the series that I enjoy greatly.
The series may only be two issues in, but I feel confident saying that Old Man Logan is one of the better books coming out of the big two right now. The plot is kind of throwaway, but it isn’t bad, and everything else about the book is excellent. Lemire and Sorrentino both continue to do stellar work, and the result is a book that I can’t wait to read more of.