Hello all and welcome to your weekly rendition of Silverwolf’s Den! Today I’m reviewing Magneto: Not a Hero, the first chapter in this part of Marvel’s new Regenesis storyline. Magneto has always been one of my favorite villains, and thus when I saw a limited series on my comic store’s shelf my only option was to pick it up. Did this comic live up to my love of Magneto, or is it true that you can’t judge a book by its cover?
Not a Hero begins at an Anti-Mutant rally in Brooklyn. As the hate group’s rage reaches a crescendo, a figure who is semingly Magneto appears and kills every one of them. This fact is problematic, however, as Magneto recently reformed and joined the X-Men in order to protect the dwindling number of mutantkind. Additionally, Cyclops, leader of the X-Men, has evidence that Magneto was nowhere near the crime scene when the violence occurred. Iron Man and Captain America, however, are wary of Magneto’s troubled past and conclude that there is still a possibility he would attempt something so vile. Even so, Magneto manages to convince the Avengers to give him a chance to prove his innocence. With the help of old allies like Emma Frost, Magneto sets out to find who could have framed him.
Writer Skottie Young tackles the herculean task of writing Magneto who, in my opinion, is one of the most complicated comic characters. He is neither evil nor benign, neither corrupt nor idealistic, but somehow a mix of all these complex emotions and ideas. Given Magneto’s tumultuous history with the X-Men, it is little wonder that fans will have high hopes for his adventures as a “good guy,” as it breathes new life into such a ubiquitous character. The writing of Not A Hero is crisp and clean: each character has a very pronounced voice and the dialogue flows without becoming cheesy, heavy-handed, or dull as could be the case for a tale of reformation. My only real complaint would be that the progression seemed a bit slow, but given that this issue is setting the stage for big events in the next three parts of the series I’m willing to remain optimistic.
Not A Hero’s art team consists of Clay Mann, Seth Mann with Norman Lee, and David Curiel, handling penciling, inking, and coloring, respectively. Together they form a glorious triumvirate, breathing life into Magneto and his compatriots. The opening combat scene is vivid and epic, evoking feelings of confusion that persist throughout the comic. The use of color is also amazing, as Magneto’s classic crimson and violet stands out against the dull backdrops of the rally and the Avenger’s HQ. The character designs are good, though most adhere to classic costumes and thus are nothing inspiring or unique. Similarly, the artwork became a little drab and appeared hastily drawn during the three pages where Magneto spoke with Emma Frost. The character’s facial expressions and body language, in contrast, are powerful and inject emotion into their discussions and declarations. The artwork is great and I’m sure this group has some surprises lined up for the next three issues.
Magneto’s newest adventure made for a good comic. The series seems to be starting off a tad slow in terms of plot, but I feel it will accelerate in a big way come Issue #2. The comic’s ending introduced us to some creepy and dangerous looking villains; I’ll be on the lookout for their powers and deadly machinations as Magneto’s Regenesis continues. In my opinion this comic is worth the buy, as there are some great images to look at and some key points that will probably become important as the story progresses. It’s easy to pick up and start reading without much knowledge of the Marvel Universe, so just about anyone can dive right in.
Brett Simon is a twenty-two year old comic enthusiast. He thinks he set a new record for colons in the title of this article.
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