Savage Wolverine #9: Space Logan
With the last story arc of Savage Wolverine being so good, I was hoping Marvel would let Zeb Wells continue to pen the book. No such luck. I’m assuming, based on how the last few issues have panned out, that Savage Wolverine might have a revolving door of writers and artists. Issue #9 begins an arc where Jock is both artist and writer. This is a very different story. Instead of demons and ninjas, Jock is going with science fiction.
Logan has been kidnapped. Who did it? Why did they do it? Those are all still shadows. All that’s known is our hero is in a full spacesuit, clinging to the outside of a ship, rocketing towards a small planet. Burning up through reentry, and then plummeting to the planet’s surface, Logan finds himself on the back of a giant space bug, fighting lice and starvation. The first half of issue #9 is a voice narrating what’s happening to Wolverine and why. The voice coaxes Logan through the slaughter of the giant space bug, and keeps assuring him he’ll come out better.
Jock takes the story into a more bizarre area. Whoever dumped Wolverine on this planet has now arrived on it and sent a small child as their emissary. The boy’s message for Wolverine is clear. The men who kidnapped him are from Earth, they sent the boy to talk to him, and to bring a hypodermic needle filled with a liquid that could “save us all.” Jock’s ends the issue there, leaving a lot of questions unanswered. It’s unclear whether this is a dream, or if it is real, or what planet Logan is on. Jock does a nice job of setting up enough intrigue to want to read issue #10.
It’s difficult to ascertain exactly where Jock is going with this. The premise is interesting, but far less engaging than Zeb Wells’ arc. Where the last Savage Wolverine story hooked you instantly, Jock’s work, like his art, is slower, darker, and takes a greater investment. Jock is also working with fewer characters, so the dialog doesn’t crackle like Wells’ did. Jock has set up significant interest, but his story just doesn’t pop like Wells’s did – at least so far.
The art is classic Jock. Very angular, lots of dark shading and jagged lines. The terrain of the planet is bare, but Jock manages to make the backgrounds like dangerous. Logan looks solid, though some of the panels have him looking like wrestler Sami Callihan (who goes by Solomon Crowe in WWE’s NXT). Jock’s action is still well done, and his ability with texture is second to none. Savage Wolverine #9 is a solid entry to a new storyline. Let’s just hope Jock can pull it off with the same level of excellence Zeb Wells achieved.
(3 Story, 3.5 Art)