Brandon Borzelli's Geek Goggle Reviews

Secret Invasion X-Men #2 of 4
Marvel Comics
Carey & Nord

Well, the X-Men appear to be able to handle the Skrulls and even the Super Skrulls so what’s left? Well this issue doesn’t exactly show us how the Skrulls are prepared to deal with the X-Men, but there are a couple of interesting plot turns that can probably make this thing interesting. Otherwise I’d say this is a rout.

The issue begins with a nice recap page. From there we get more of the battle with the Super Skrulls from the last issue. When they do finally start to get a bit overwhelmed they easily escape with Nightcrawler.

The Skrulls lay out their next step, which is to trap the X-Men into coming to them. Almost on queue we see Cyclops explaining the X-Men’s plan to the mutants. The big obstacle with the pending battle is that the Skrulls are blocking telepaths.

The issue ramps up the number of players in the second half of the book as we get glimpses into part of Cyclops’ plan. It’s an interesting mix of traps, guerilla warfare and brute force. The Skrulls do seem overmatched as the X-Men have the Skrull’s plan figured out and are dismantling it piece by piece. There is also the side plot with Nightcrawler and the Skrull orb, which is totally lost on me at this point.

The part of the comic that I liked the best was that the action was secondary to the planning, counter planning and generally out smarting that the X-Men accomplish. It felt like page after page I was saying to myself, “Oh, that’s why that person did that…” It’s a good way to tell an interesting story. Obviously the X-Men have a huge cast so some of the characters aren’t really the ones I would expect to find in these situations, but I guess that is what made the little twists more surprising.

The artwork had me scratching my head. Some of the scenes were brilliant and showed excellent emotion and depth. However, I had some hard times telling apart some of the X-Men. Also, the lack of background details got very old for me. I did like the telepaths having a shade of red as a backdrop, but when virtually every page has the majority of the panels with blank backgrounds the symbolism is lost.

The first issue made better use of showing that the Skrulls have individuals with personalities in their ranks. But this issue backs away from that and I wasn’t thrilled with this development. Also, the Nightcrawler orb idea isn’t hitting it with me. I would like there to be some more information about it in some way, maybe even from the Skrull’s point of view.

I liked the issue, but it didn’t set me on fire. I think the series is more for the X-Men fans than the Secret Invasion enthusiasts. I’m not sure the long time X-Men fan will like the artistic portrayal of the characters, but I think the characterization of most of them is really excellent. It’s a fun read but one you can probably skip if you are tight with finances right now.

3.5 out of 5 geek goggles