"The Burnt Offering, Part Two: Lepers at the Table"
Writer: Fabian Nicieza
Pencils: Patrick Zircher
Inks: Rob Ross and M3th
Colors: UDON's Shane Law and Kevin Yan
Letters: Virtual Calligraphy's Chris Eliopoulos
Publisher: Marvel Comics
With Cable's efforts to save the world whipping the global community into an uproar, we see the X-Men enter into a reluctant alliance with Deadpool, as they have come to believe that Deadpool's genetic connection with Cable is the key to bringing him down before his well intentioned actions spark a global conflict. As the issue ends we see Cable increases the tension level by telling the world leaders they have 48 hours to completely disarm.
First off I have to give this title full marks for making full use of its page count, as even the opening recap page makes for an entertaining show, with the final lines being a truly hilarious breach of the fourth wall. This issue also continued to open my eyes to the fact that Fabian Nicieza is right up there with Joe Kelly and Gail Simone when it comes to his delivery of Deadpool's special brand of humour, as there's several laugh aloud moments in this issue, from his interaction with the X-Men, to his contribution to Cable's big announcement. I also have to say this issue does a great job of developing the central idea that is driving this story, as Cable's bid to make the world a better place is a genuinely compelling idea, and it's made even more so by simple fact that Fabian Nicieza hasn't really shown any flaws in Cable's logic, as his conversation/interview with Irene Merryweather doesn't present him as a cackling madman with delusions of grandeur. In fact while I would normally frown upon the insertion of such a sizeable chunk of text into a comic, I have to say the interview format fits seamlessly into the action, and it does a wonderful job of spelling out Cable's motivations. It's also nice to see the X-Men's guest-appearance looks to be a logical development of the story, and not simply a bid to boost the book's numbers, though this book certainly deserves all the readers it can get ahold of.
Patrick Zircher's art is clearly impacted by the arrival of the UDON studio, but for the most part the two styles merge together quite well, as Patrick Zircher brings a greater level of detail to the book, while UDON brings a smoother sense of motion to the book's action sequences. In the end the book looks fantastic, as we open with a great bit of action as Deadpool battle a small army of rent-a-cops, and this is nicely followed by the X-Men entrance into the action, as the art does a wonderful job of announcing the team's arrival using their powers. Now the battle between Cable and the Six-Pack was a bit confusing, but I suspect this was intentional, as the dialogue would seem to suggest that Cable had this group completely off their game. Still the scene where Cable teleports Anaconda halfway across the country could've been more clearly presented. I did rather enjoyed the X-variant of Deadpool's costume though, thanks largely to Wade's horrified reaction shot.
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