X-Force #3

Background

The mutant Black Tom Cassidy has staged a hostile takeover of the World Trade Center, holding the rich and powerful hostage.

The Jankos Corporation, a cutting edge scientific firm, has been blackmailed into freeing Tom's pal Juggernaut from his dimensional prison to provide the muscle for his latest operation.

Story 'Battlecry'

  X-Force #3
Summary: Spider-Man Appears
Arc: Part 1 of 'Sabotage' (1-2-3)
Editor: Bob Harras
Plot/Pencils: Rob Liefeld
Writer: Fabian Nicieza
Inker: Rob Liefeld
Reprinted In: Sabotage (TPB)

The mutant Siryn, cousin to Black Tom has arrived at the World Trade Center to end the hostage situation. She soon encounters Juggernaut on the roof. He is able to withstand her sonic attacks. Black Tom appears and teams up with Marko to drive his cousin away. She falls back and is quickly contacted by Cable, hovering in a private craft overhead, to join their assault to free the hostages. She agrees.

Inside the building Sunspot and Gideon - mutants-slash-hostages - are met by Black Tom and Juggernaut. They exchange their representative "you won't win" speeches.

Later outside the building, they implement their strategy. Warpath takes Juggernaut off the roof, allowing the rest of the team to knock out the skeleton crew of guards. Once completed, they break into the building and plan to confront Tom.

Inside, Gideon and Sunspot decide to attack their aggressor. This proves to be a poor choice as Tom is more than a match for both of them. Cable and company arrive, informing Tom that his plan has failed. Tom begs to differ and produces a detonator and reveals that he's placed explosives throughout the building to bring it crashing down.

Outside Warpath continues to slug it out with Juggernaut. It's obvious that Warpath has little hope of defeating him, but he doesn't give up.

At this point Spider-Man appears to check on the riot at the WTC and offer assistance if necessary. At this point an explosion erupts from the building as Tom activates his detonator.

General Comments

Yes, I know. This story involves the World Trade Center and an explosion. Bear in mind that this story was written in 1991, a full 10 years before the Al- Queda attacks turned a relatively harmless fantasy scenario into a waking nightmare.

Putting that to the side, the story seems a bit padded. The entire issue can be summed up as follows: Warpath fights Juggernaut while the rest of X- Force confronts Black Tom in the World Trade Center.

There are instances where one sentence summaries can generate interest because it's the proverbial tip of the iceberg. In this case is describes the iceberg almost completely.

Overall Rating

1 web. When this was originally published, I really had no problem with Liefeld's artwork. Looking at it now, it's inconsistent. Sometimes he has a grasp on proportions, sometimes he doesn't. Seeing Cable is his Robocop © - inspired battle armor is laughable by today's standards, although it may have worked well at that time.

The dialogue is alternately standard and disappointing. Certain scenes work well, some come across as forced. During one sequence involving the Warpath/Juggernaut fight, Warpath tries to get a bit "meta" calling the Juggernaut's threats "tough guy back talk". While this is supposed to be sarcastic, it fails on many levels. If they actually used tough-guy banter instead of schoolyard insults, then it may have worked. Since they didn't, it comes across in an awkward manner.

Footnote

Juggernaut was banished from Earth by Thor II in Thor (Vol. 1) #412 during the Acts of Vengeance campaign. Excalibur later teamed up with Thor II and learned that Juggernaut had become the ruler of that dimension. Once they deposed him, Thor II sent him to an isolated meteor deep in space.