REVIEW: ‘Way of X,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 2 minutes

The Way of X #1

Way of X #1 is written by Si Spurrier, illustrated by Bob Quinn, colored by Java Tartaglia, and lettered by VC’s Clayton Cowles. It is published by Marvel Comics. In the wake of mutants forming their own nation on Krakoa, Nightcrawler struggles with a world where death is treated cavalierly, and his faith is questioned. Meanwhile, multiple mutants, including Professor X, are tormented by a malevolent figure who calls himself the Patchwork Man.

Though he was the focus of the Giant-Size X-Men: Nightcrawler one-shot, Nightcrawler has largely been regulated to the background of Krakoa in the new X-Men era. Here he takes center focus, with Spurrier capturing everything that makes the character great. From his sense of humor (including a prank played on Magneto that goes south) to his massive heart, Kurt Wagner is the focus of this book, and it works in his favor. Spurrier’s script plays Kurt off various characters, including young X-Men like Pixie and the leaders of Krakoa like Xavier and Magneto. He’s easy-going and friendly with the latter and pensive amongst the former.

The book’s major focus is faith, specifically Kurt’s struggle to build a new mutant faith. Nightcrawler is well known for his belief in God, and in a society where the dead can be brought back to life, that faith obviously comes under question. Nightcrawler has questions himself, both in how young mutants seem eager to rush into death’s arms and how certain aspects of Krakoa work, particularly the ritual known as Crucible.

Whether it’s ironic or intentional, this mirrors the discussions that X-Men fans have had about the Krakoa era and its multiple aspects. I expect to see more of this as the book goes on. Another contrast to Nightcrawler’s belief is the organization known as Orchis, who believe mutants are an abomination. Most of their dialogue is fiery screeds against mutants, with the capitalized lettering a jarring but effective way to sell them as the zealots they are.

Quinn and Tartaglia also bring the book to life with their artwork. The young mutants under Nightcrawler’s tutelage actually look like teenagers. And Quinn gives each mutant a distinguishing element, whether it’s Loa’s tattoos or Pixie’s bright pink hair and wings. Nightcrawler himself stands out thanks to his trademark indigo skin, golden eyes, and fanged mouth. This lets Quinn give him a wide range of reactions, whether it’s horror at a young mutant’s death or quiet contemplation while in prayer. When Nightcrawler teleports, he is also surrounded by indigo smoke that matches his fur and his trademark “BAMF” sound effect, which Tartaglia colors a purplish-blue. The Patchwork Man himself sporadically appears in shadow, with the only hints of his existence being his titular patchwork cloak and his sinister, twisting smile.

Way of X #1 offers a profound meditation on the nature of faith and the price of paradise and places Nightcrawler in the spotlight. With the appearance of another classic X-Men character and the budding mutant religion, it could be one of the best books in the Reign of X era.

Way of X #1 is available wherever comics are sold.


Way of X #1
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TL;DR

Way of X #1 offers a profound meditation on the nature of faith and the price of paradise and places Nightcrawler in the spotlight. With the appearance of another classic X-Men character and the budding mutant religion, it could be one of the best books in the Reign of X era.