ADVANCED REVIEW: ‘Wolverine,’ Issue #20

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Wolverine #20

Wolverine #20 is written by Benjamin Percy, illustrated by Adam Kubert, colored by Frank Martin (with Dijjo Lima handling colors on pages 9-14), and lettered by VC’s Cory Petit.  It’s published by Marvel Comics. Wolverine has been put through the wringer after his time-spanning battle with Omega Red and his Phalanx-infested future self. But now he has to deal with Deadpool, who’s made it clear that he wants to rejoin X-Force by any means necessary. And the merc with a mouth thinks his ticket to Krakoa lies in uncovering a government conspiracy involving one of the X-Men’s old allies…and one of Wolverine’s severed hands.

With this issue, Percy focuses almost entirely on Deadpool and his attempts to enter Krakoa. and it surprisingly works. I’ve had a love/hate relationship with Deadpool; he can be really funny (and surprisingly emotional), but he can come off as grating when not written well. Thankfully, Percy’s take falls into the former camp as Deadpool’s schemes to get into Krakoa are presented in a hilarious light—he stows away in a barrel of booze and even tries to hitch a piggyback ride on Cyclops’ back. Deadpool’s trademark habit of breaking the fourth wall is also present. He comments about Wolverine’s innate need to be a loner clashing with his duty to the X-Men. This dovetails nicely with Deadpool’s desire to be part of a team. Even Wolverine gets in on the meta-commentary!

Kubert returns to the main Wolverine title, and his style is perfect for all of Deadpool’s destructive antics. Nowhere is this clearer than in the opening pages, which feature Wolverine chasing after a rogue truck loaded with bombs. He finally gets in front of the truck, with panels crisscrossing between the massive eighteen-wheeler bearing down on the X-Men’s Treehouse base and Wolverine’s eyes narrowing in fury.  It then cuts to Deadpool attempting to skydive into Krakoa and being literally cut into pieces by its anti-air defenses. This then leads to one of the funniest moments in the issue, where Wolverine’s face grows from shock to disgust in the space of two panels as Deadpool’s entrails fall all over him.

The issue also boasts a bright color palette thanks to Martin and Lima’s work; from the sunny beaches of Krakoa to the thick forests of Chesapeake Bay, this is a book bursting with color. But, of course, the most prominent colors are red and black since Deadpool is the POV character; it provides a nice contrast to Wolverine’s brown and tan costume. And since Deadpool is narrating the issue, Petit brings back his classic yellow narration boxes filled with wry observations about the X-Men’s resurgence in popularity and a play on Wolverine’s classic catchphrase about being “the best there is.”

Wolverine #20 picks up in the aftermath of X Lives/X Deaths of Wolverine by pairing the clawed Canadian with Deadpool for an off-the-rails mission. It’s a nice change of pace from the usual Wolverine stories, but that’s for the best: sometimes you have to shake things up to keep a character fresh.

Wolverine #20 will be available wherever comics are sold on April 20, 2022.


Wolverine #20
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TL;DR

Wolverine #20 picks up in the aftermath of X Lives/X Deaths of Wolverine by pairing the clawed Canadian with Deadpool for an off-the-rails mission. It’s a nice change of pace from the usual Wolverine stories, but that’s for the best: sometimes you have to shake things up to keep a character fresh.