A+X #16


The Avengers and X-Men had a fight and now they are friends, teaming up in a variety of stories in the A+X title. Spider-Man is an Avenger (although this story happened in the past when he wasn't an Avenger) and Psylocke is an X-Man (although she wasn't an X-Man when they had a fall-out with the Avengers) This is the story of the first time they met.

Story Details

  A+X #16
Summary: The Amazing Spider-Man + Psylocke
Editor: Jordan D. White, Nick Lowe
Writer: Sean Ryan
Artist: Goran Parlov
Cover Art: Goran Parlov
Colorist: Veronica Gandini

Spider-Man is swinging to the shops when he hears gunfire! He crashes through a glass roof and lands amidst a fight between Psylocke and a gang of armed ninjas! He joins the fight and they quickly knock most of them out. Psylocke uses her powers to delve into a ninja's mind but is interrupted when a grenade goes off! Spider-Man comes around from the resulting explosion to find Psylocke lying unmoving on the floor with a metal spike sticking through her stomach! He goes to move her but she is bleeding too much and screams in pain! He wants to go get help but she wants him to stay with her. She asks him to tell her brother something but she starts to fade... She loses consciousness and Spider-Man holds her, sorry that he is the one to be with her as she dies... The X-Men (Cyclops, Gambit, Beast and Wolverine) crash through the roof and winch her to safety, thanking Spider-Man. They fly off in The Blackbird leaving Spider-Man to contemplate what just happened...

General Comments

As a story, this does not conform to the pattern and quality of previous issues. It's historical setting and lack of context hurts the impact of their first meeting and Sean Ryan doesn't do enough to cushion these difficulties. I don't know where these characters are in their history and I'd like to.

Goran Parlov's art is classic. There is a great deal of style, but his work does not stand out from others who draw with these 80s characteristics. Colours and lines are bold, panels are clean and do not break the boundaries of tradition and all is well enough. Parlov is inconsistent. There are moments of emotion and mood and then moments where the story is spoiled because of a strange expression or something else.

Psylocke's injury is a little oversold and awkward. There are some dialogue bubbles that throw the flow of their conversation and seem odd, leaving the reader questioning what is actually going on in her head. The art adds to this confusion, but then delivers a wonderful panel like the one where Spidey holds her before the X-Men arrive. It is all just a little... odd. This makes five out of ten pages awkward and that's too much of the story to keep the quality up.

There are a few nice moments, but this, unfortunately, seems a bit of a wasted meeting.

Overall Rating

Awkward and out of current context.