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‘Return of Wolverine’ #5 review: A bloodbath worth a look

Wolverine officially returns in a bloodbath issue.

It’s nothing new to have heroes rise from the dead to fight another day. In fact, it has gotten to the point where if a hero hasn’t died and come back that’s a problem that needs fixing. Every character deserves a resurrection story and Charles Soule is writing that story in Return of Wolverine for the main man Logan. In this fifth and final issue of the miniseries, we get answers. Sort of…

So what’s it about?

Read the preview.

Why does this matter?

Steve McNiven also returns to the series after his amazing pencil work with issue #1. No disrespect to Declan Shalvey, but I’m excited to see McNiven close this story out especially with the ultra-violence in play here.

Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?

Dig that hair.
Credit: Marvel Comics

This issue opens with Wolverine traveling to a space station off Earth. Persephone is offering answers and Wolverine is dying to know them as are we. The issue breaks down quite simply opening with a full explanation of Persephone’s plans, what she sees Logan’s next move should be, and Logan having none of that. It all resolves into a bloodbath, not unlike his berserker rage that took down the Weapon X program. The books final pages revel in Logan’s ability to get a job done as well as dovetail into Wolverine Infinity Watch #1 nicely.

I won’t spoil the big reveal from Persephone, but I will say it’s a clever commentary on where humanity is at these days. Sure she’s evil, but it’s not entirely incalculable that it could be pulled off.

McNiven draws a hell of an issue, with claws pressing through skulls and blood pouring off Wolverine in quite a few intense panels. Rendered in red light the bloodbath sequence is reminiscent of his killing spree in Weapon X by ‎Barry Windsor-Smith. We also get another flashback to the incarnations of Wolverine in prison cells with quite a few deep cut versions popping up and looking great. Costumes and clothing look great too with the stylized realism we’ve come to expect from highly detailed artists.

It takes courage to do the villainous explain it all move with Logan.
Credit: Marvel Comics

It can’t be perfect, can it?

It’s hard to read this issue and not be a tad annoyed it took five issues to get this far, which isn’t fair to this issue itself but hard to ignore. I’m not sure we needed four issues to build towards this (three issues total might have sufficed) through all that anticipation and build up makes the reveals here seem too quick and matter of fact. Why Persephone couldn’t just tell Logan everything prior, and really why he cares at all, is beyond me. There’s some planning on her part when it comes to Logan fighting the X-Men earlier in the series but not much beyond that. Oh, and don’t bother reading this to get any info on the hot claws concept. Not only do we not get any hot claw action but there is no explanation either.

The journey Wolverine goes on in this issue to stop Persephone is a bit hard to swallow. For a villain who has planned so thoroughly, she very conveniently loses track of Logan long enough for him to get an information dump on her entire plan and then even has enough time to act on that plan. For all the points she earned being a master tactician she sure shot herself in the foot with this issue.

Is it good?

This issue looks great and offers answers which allow for a satisfying enough conclusion even if they are sour answers that are hard to swallow. Possibly the most enjoyable element of this issue is the fact that it’s finally over and we can move on.

Return of Wolverine #5
Is it good?
This issue looks great and offers answers which allow for a satisfying enough conclusion even if they are sour answers that are hard to swallow. Possibly the most enjoyable element of this issue is the fact that it’s finally over and we can move on.
The visuals, and violent action, are great
We get answers and Persephone's plan is actually kind of clever
Dovetails nicely into Wolverine Infinity Watch #1
After 4 issues of delay the info dump of answers can't live up to the build up
The resolution requires Persephone to make some bone headed mistakes
No hot claw explanation (nor do they show up even though they are on the cover)
7.5
Good
Comments

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