Extraordinary X-Men #7 Review: What’s Haunting Nightcrawler?


Extraordinary X-Men #7
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Victor Ibanez
Colored by Jay David Ramos
Published by Marvel Comics

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One of the big problems when a title first launches and it is as good as Extraordinary X-Men has been is the inevitable letdown to come. No title, with few exceptions, can keep up the level of excellence that those first handful of issues usually impart of the reader.

So last month, when Extraordinary X-Men #6 didn’t really impress me, I let it slide. I figured the book had been so good from the get-go that one month where the title was just okay and not outstanding was something I could live with.

Now after reading issue #7, I’m a little more worried.

Picking up where last issue left off, the bulk of the X-Men are in Weirdworld helping the mutant refugees and dealing with Sunfire, who they consider a traitor to their race. Meanwhile, Storm and Jean Grey go into Nightcrawler’s mind to help him confront the demons of his recent past.

And if that doesn’t sound like something you would run right out to the comic shop to pick up and read, you would be right.

First off, Humberto Ramos is once again absent and Victor Ibanez is doing fill-in duty on the art. Going into Extraordinary X-Men, I knew that Ramos would need the occasional assist if the book was going to meet any kind of regular deadline, but you would think they would go with someone who at least stylistically is similar to Ramos.

It’s not that Ibanez is a bad artist or anything, because he isn’t. His style is a bit bland and nothing about it really stands out, but it is perfectly fine as far as comic book art goes. The problem is that when compared to the work Ramos has been turning in, it looks downright pedestrian.

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Unfortunately, the art isn’t the only thing that fails to impress about Extraordinary X-Men #7. I don’t know if writer Jeff Lemire has been having an off couple months or if he is just trying to write filler before the next big arc and the return of Ramos, but these last two issues have been a decided step down in terms of the quality of the script.

The dialogue is just terrible and sounds like something out of a bad 90s comic. Like Rob Liefeld X-Force or Youngblood bad. Plus, nothing really happens in issue #7. The X-Men and the mutant refugees escape, Jean and Storm discover what has been bothering Kurt, which is a bit over the top even for the X-Men, and it all ends with a group hug.

Seriously? I paid four bucks for this?

Thankfully, we should return to greatness next issue with the start of the “Apocalypse Wars” crossover. Nothing can get me excited for the X-Men again like a good crossover!

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The Bottom Line: After months of solid, enjoyable stories, it was inevitable that Extraordinary X-Men should stumble a bit. These last two issues have simply not been that good, and I attribute much of that to Ramos needing a few issues off to get ahead. Luckily, the series has earned some slack since it launched and I have no intention of dropping it now.

Hopefully next month it will be back to greatness and firing on all cylinders for the Extraordinary X-Men.