REVIEW: ‘Devil’s Reign: X-Men,’ Issue #2

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Devil’s Reign X-Men #2 - But Why Tho

Devil’s Reign: X-Men #2 is published by Marvel Comics. Written by Gerry Duggan, art and colours by Phil Noto and letters by Clayton Cowles. This is a tie-in to the Devil’s Reign event.

As a standoff is held between Mayor Wilson Fisk and Emma Frost’s X-Men, Fisk was forced to back down from his attack. But a flashback revealed that Frost worked for Fisk during her dark past, as did Elektra. In revenge, Fisk leaked to the press that Emma may have had a hand in the death of a little girl. In this issue, Frost reels from Kingpin’s attack. A flashback reveals a team-up between Elektra and Emma whilst she makes her own moves in the present.

The story of this issue may be the best of the tie-ins so far, in my opinion even rivaling the main book in its concept. Not only is there a terrific battle of wills between Frost and Kingpin, but the flashback story is stunning. Duggan predominantly spends this issue in the past, but it does not feel like it is. The story being unveiled is new within old tales. Moments from other stories are reimagined to show how Frost has had an influence. It brings a smirk to my face when references are made to stories such as Daredevil: Born Again and many others. And then there is an excellent team-up. The action sequence is equal parts exhilarating and dramatic, A guest star brought in is an extremely surprising inclusion, but to be honest very little of Devil’s Reign: X-Men #1 could be predicted. The final segment returns to the present and takes the tie-in into an entirely new location and direction.

The characters and the dialogue are simply exquisite. The combination of Elektra and Emma is a fantastic match-up. They are incredibly similar, marred by bloody actions and dark histories. They have resentment for each other but as the truth about the little girl is explained, their motivations make perfect sense. Emma’s brief interaction with the guest star is incredibly touching. In the present, Frost’s mindset is fascinating to explore. There is no attempt to try and cover up what she did and there is not a large amount of remorse for her actions. She has come to terms with the Hellfire Club days and is well aware that this is merely a machination from Fisk.

Noto’s art is gorgeous. From the opening page, the ability of the artist is highly evident. Miniscule adjustments to Frost’s face depict precise emotions. She bites her lip when nervous before she regales her advisors of her past actions. In the first flashback, she creates the illusion of her transforming into Invisible Woman, subtle alterations beautifully capturing this. Throughout the moments of her history, she is always impeccable and recognisable. Elektra also is incredibly designed. The fight scene is fantastic as Elektra serves as the muscle. The each in which she can tear people apart is mesmerising. Noto shows her movements as if they are a blur or not even moving sometimes. There are a number of cameos and all of the characters look fantastic.

The colours are stunning as well. The flashback sequence frequently uses a single colour for most of the scene, although it changes from page to page. These are often muted tones, such as brown or dark blues. What isn’t dull is the pristine red and white of our villainous heroines, or the blood that Elektra draws from her victims. During the present-day periods, especially the final section, there is a vibrancy to the landscapes. The lettering is the standard X-Men font that all books have used in the Krakoan era.

Devil’s Reign: X-Men #2 is a shining example of what tie-ins can be. The story is beautiful and meaningful, altering events from Marvel’s history. And it is a deeply emotional tale containing a collaboration between two characters. The art and writing are stunning as both character development and awesome comic book action come together.

Devil’s Reign: X-Men #2 is available where comics are sold.


Devil’s Reign: X-Men #2
5

TL;DR

Devil’s Reign: X-Men #2 is a shining example of what tie-ins can be. The story is beautiful and meaningful, altering events from Marvel’s history. And it is a deeply emotional tale containing a collaboration between two characters. The art and writing are stunning as both character development and awesome comic book action come together.