Amazing X-Men #3 — Aaron/McGuinness — March ’14/Marvel Comics

Amazing3With things dreadfully serious in existing X-books such as Uncanny X-Men, All-New X-Men, and even Uncanny Avengers — which, with the Apocalypse Twins making things no fun for anyone is more of an X-book than not right now — the field was ripe for a rip-snorting, swashbuckling adventure through, well, anywhere. The realms of the afterlife? Sure, why not?

Enter Marvel’s latest X-offering, borrowing its title from one of the alternate Age of Apocalypse books (after all, it’s not like Spider-Man is using the adjective right now). From the beginning, Amazing X-Men teased the return of everyone’s favorite two-toed teleporting mutant, and with this issue, we get it, in spades.

With the latest issue, writer Jason Aaron and penciler Ed McGuinness have offered up the single-most crazy fun comic I have read since the last issue of Bad Dog. In short, Nightcrawer’s dad, the red devil Azazel, has a pirate ship and is plundering both heaven and hell for … who cares? Pirates. With cannon and swords. In Hell. If that doesn’t sound like the best idea for a comic book, I’ll eat my tricorne hat.

Especially refreshing is Aaron’s treatment of Dr. Hank McCoy, the Beast. For a character who has spent the past year moping his way through All-New, dreadfully sorry that he displaced the Original Five in time, it’s great to see him swinging from the ropes, talking shit, doing math, and kicking ass.

I’ll admit I was originally on the fence, but after this issue, I’m headed down to Blue Moon and adding Amazing X-Men to my pull list.

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