ADVANCED REVIEW: ‘Marauders Annual,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Marauders Annual #1 - But Why Tho

Marauders Annual #1 is written by Steve Orlando, illustrated by Creees Lee, colored by Rain Beredo, and lettered by VC’s Cory Petit. It’s published by Marvel Comics. While on an investigation mission for X-Factor, Daken is abducted by the mutant Brimstone Love, who’s formed a cult on the grounds of the old Xavier Insitute. To save him, Kate Pryde and Lucas Bishop form a new team of Marauders comprised of Psylocke, the time manipulator Tempo, dream walker Somnus, and Daken’s fellow X-Factor teammate and lover Aurora.

The X-Men line of comics is about to undergo a significant upheaval this year, and the Marauders are part of that. Orlando, having previously written the X-Men before as part of the Heroes Reborn alternate universe, takes over the reins of Marauders from Gerry Duggan and proves that he’s more than up to the task of handling Kate’s crew. When Marauders first began, Kate made it her mission to take mutants to Krakoa and bring Krakoan medicine to those in need. In the annual, she decides to rededicate herself to mutant rescue missions. And fittingly, her crew is made up of mutants who feel adrift in one way or another. Psylocke feels guilt over the actions she took to keep her daughter in her life, Tempo just went through an awkward breakup, and Somnus is trying to find his place in the world after being resurrected. I also appreciate that Orlando is utilizing Somnus after his debut in Marvel’s Voices: Pride since there’s history between Daken and Somnus, and therefore plenty of character dynamics to work with.

And since Kate is aiming to save lost mutants, it only makes sense that her opponent is a figure who preys on the fears and insecurities of mutants who haven’t made it to Krakoa. Brimstone Love whips up his followers by delivering impassioned speeches about how Krakoa is a “joke” and how Professor X “abandoned his dream” —letting his followers express their rage on Daken in the “Theater of Pain.” Reactionaries often radicalize their followers to rage against an unseen enemy, despite all evidence to the contrary that said “enemy” isn’t out to do them harm, and Love is a perfect example of that.

Joining Orlando on art duties are Lee and Beredo, which results in a gorgeous-looking comic. Daken often takes center stage, with one page showing him being swallowed in a fiery explosion and another in the throes of berserker rage, with his teeth locked in a snarl and his claws extended. Each character also has a unique costume, especially Kate, who continues to sport her long red coat and sword as the Red Queen, and Bishop, wearing red and black clothing that hints at his soldier’s nature. Beredo keeps the red and black color scheme going with Love, who looks Satanic in every sense of the word, including his mutant abilities of geomancy which summons bursts of lava and his gigantic, curving horns. Even Petit depicts his word balloons in a jagged, inhuman shape, with a red border surrounding them

Marauders Annual #1 reforms the seafaring mutant team, as a new team of creatives takes the wheel of the Marauder. With the final page teasing a mystery that Kate seems to be at the heart of, I look forward to what Orlando and artist Eleonora Carlini have in store.

Marauders Annual #1 will be available wherever comics are sold on January 26, 2021.


Marauders Annual #1
4.5

TL;DR

Marauders Annual #1 reforms the seafaring mutant team, as a new team of creatives takes the wheel of the Marauder. With the final page teasing a mystery that Kate seems to be at the heart of, I look forward to what Orlando and artist Eleonora Carlini have in store.