So I wake up this morning to the news they aren't going to prosecute that cop Darren Wilson for murdering Michael Brown in Ferguson. Which did not exactly surprise me, because I'm fairly pessimistic about these sorts of things, but it's still disappointing. I wanted to be surprised, to find out that at least this one time, someone who had abused their power was going to be held accountable for their actions. Yeah, I know, silly Calvin. I don't typically get serious here, and in a paragraph we'll be back to discussing a disappointing pair of comics, but I felt like I should type something. I know things have always been stacked against African-Americans in this country, but have we always accepted so little accountability from people in charge?
Nightcrawler #6 and 7, by Chris Claremont (writer #6, script #7), Marguerite Bennett (plot #7), Todd Nauck (artist), Rachelle Rosenberg (color artist), Joe Sabino (letterer #6), Cory Petit (letterer #7) - Man, that bad guy has a creepy neck. It's like his beard fused into his neck. Please, bad guy, wear an outfit with a higher collar. Nobody wants to see that.
In issue 6, Kurt and Rico fight the Crimson Pirates to protect a young super-intelligent mutant girl named Ziggy. There's a brief moment where they think they've failed, until they realize the pirates' guns actually teleport people, rather than kill them. Kurt pretty well kicks the bad guys' rear ends on his own, but Rico does a decent job protecting civilians considering it's his first time in the field. Considering Kurt was fighting an entire team of villains, he made it look pretty easy, although the bad guys exhibited zero teamwork, which helped. Issue 7 was Kurt dealing with Logan's death, by going to the Danger Room and reliving a bunch of his past history with Wolverine. Then he tries to make design a house that he thinks Logan would like and fill it with his friends for a big party (that is all fake because he's still in the Danger Room), except Holographic Logan won't show up, and Kurt decides Logan would want to be honored by people living their lives.
These were not terribly enjoyable issues. They look nice enough, I'm pleased that Nauck's work hasn't fallen off while sticking to his monthly schedule. The fight with the Crimson Pirates was well-drawn, nothing flashy with the page layouts, just solid workmanship presenting the action in a clear fashion.
But the stories themselves, not so much. Maybe the Crimson Pirates are supposed to look like losers, but Kurt really seemed to handle them easily. I wasn't expecting him to die, obviously, but there wasn't any real tension to the battle, where I thought he might fail to protect Rico or Ziggy. That's probably because Claremont was more concerned with trying to build a bond between Kurt and Rico, or illustrate a point to Rico about being a X-Man, or humans accepting mutants. But if most of the issue is going to be a fight, there ought to be some sort of suspense to it. The story might honestly have needed another issue. End this one on a cliffhanger of Kurt in trouble, or Rico missing, then resolve things the next month. But we had to get to Logan being dead.
It makes sense for Kurt to want to honor his friend's memory, but I can't help feeling Kurt's own return from the dead roughly 5 minutes ago ought to have some effect on that. A quiet confidence Logan will return again. Beyond that, I think Kurt and Logan might have done this better a few issues ago when they had their drinkin' buddy conversation in the Danger Room about Kurt's reservations over leaving Heaven, and Logan having to face his own mortality, and the very real chance he wouldn't live long enough to see Jean's next return from the dead. The discussion felt more natural there, whereas here, it feels more forced. Plus, it has a strong "clip show" element to it, and the idea of Kurt having the Danger Room make a bunch of copies of people for a false wake/party, rather than just go spend time with those people in real life, felt off. I could go with Kurt wanting to be alone, or wanting the comfort of mutual friends, or even him creating just a Logan in the Danger Room to talk to, but the whole big thing didn't seem right. Not even as something Kurt started, then acknowledged as a bad idea.
Oh well, truth be told, I'm dropping the book in a couple of months - because I don't want to deal with the Shadow King - so we're just playing out the string here.