So first off, I’m going to be completely honest and say I’ll take or leave A+X. While it’s basically fun, quickfire stories, I tend to only pick up issues that feature my favourite characters. So it’s pretty obvious that I was going to pick up this one, seeing as all four featured heroes are on my “A+ 10/10 will read almost anything” list.
The first half of this issue features Spider-Woman and Shadowcat, who along with Lockheed are recovering a meteorite, and fighting the Absorbing Man in an abandoned subway station. Sounds pretty run of the mill, but I was thoroughly impressed by Gerry Duggan’s treatment of this story.
For starters, the dialogue is great. Snappy, snarky, and clever. Straight away we’re reminded that both Jess and Lockheed’s ties to S.W.O.R.D. and Kitty has a couple of great lines in response to not being allowed to know all the details of their mission. Once they do manage to barge in on the melee, Creel is trying to get his hands on the meteorite while being thwarted by both HYDRA and AIM.
What follows is nothing short of awesome girl power, with added Lockheed brilliance. Kitty is wonderfully clever as always, taking on Creel while Jess deals with the rest of the goon squad, and when everything is all done and dusted, there’s no way Kitty isn’t taking advantage of the free cleaning squad while they wait for the cavalry.
The art is clean, consistent, and filled with movement. I often find many conventional comic artists portrayals of Jessica’s (admittedly ludicrous) costume a bit vulgar, but Salvador Larroca does a great job here. There are very few gratuitous boob shots, and while I’m certainly no detractor of boobs, for that I’m thankful.
The only thing I didn’t like about this story, was Duggan feeling the need to bring up Jess’ pheromones. While yes, this is part of her character, it’s not something I really need to be reminded of, and the context was kind of iffy. All in all though, the team of Drew, Pryde, and Lockheed is well worth a read, and will only take up five minutes of your time.
Now for the second half of the book, featuring Deadpool and Hawkeye. The art here isn’t quite as pretty as Larroca’s work, but Reilly Brown still does an admirable job. As you would expect, there is more snarky, fast paced dialogue. This tweet from writer Christopher Hastings pretty much sums up the entire story…
If you were to walk into a comic shop, get A+X #8, you would find that I wrote a story about Deadpool and Hawkeye being total bros with bows
— Christopher Hastings (@drhastings) May 22, 2013
Let’s look at what I want in a comic featuring these two:
Glaringly predictable but still hilarious dialogue… check.
Lots of action with some form of ridiculous vehicluar stunt… check.
Pop culture references up the wazoo… check.
Explosions… triple check.
Hawkeye + Deadpool was everything I wanted in a short story. Silly, a bit predictable, and filled with things going boom.
So A+X #8? Well worth picking up if you’re after something fun, short, and stand-alone.