Current Reviews


Exiles #82

Posted: Monday, June 19, 2006
By: Diana Kingston

Writer: Tony Bedard
Artist: Jim Calafiore

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Okay, that's really not what I was expecting.

I suppose the point here was to end "The World Tour" with a surprise twist, to subvert the reader's expectations. Fair enough. But was this the best they could do?

Once again, Tony Bedard's skill at plotting fails to make up for some rather clumsy creative decisions. This issue holds up on a purely technical level - that is to say, what happens makes sense in the context of the story and past issues - but that doesn't mean it's the best outcome. Or even a good outcome, at that.

Here's the thing: by trying so hard to avoid cliche endings, Bedard has swerved directly into a dreadful anticlimax. After fourteen issues, the main problem of "The World Tour" remains unresolved, essentially delaying the real conclusion to the story. This wouldn't be such a big deal if we hadn't just spent a total of ten months on it, and if Claremont wasn't waiting in the wings to take over the book.

What's worse, most of the other subplots raised in recent issues aren't resolved either: after teasing us with the destruction of the Heroes Reborn world... well, nothing happens. After being told repeatedly by the Timebreakers and that weird Chaos/Order thing that Counter-Earth had to go because it's some horrible blight on the Multiverse (duh), nobody seems to care. I realize it's probably because of that whole Onslaught Reborn thing coming up, but if that's the case, why offer this kind of tease? Nothing can come of it anyway.

Characterization is all over the place as well: what happened to Blink's desire for revenge? Why does Zarda choose to stay with the Exiles? Why are the Exiles so accepting of the final twist in the story, considering all the dangerous implications?

"The World Tour" ends with a somewhat-new status quo for the Exiles, but it's just not enough; this "epic" storyline fails by virtue of having a thoroughly underwhelming conclusion. Very disappointing indeed.

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