Comic Book Review: X-Factor #24

David continues to crank out incredible reads every month on X-Factor. This is certainly one of Marvel’s strongest titles and one that I always look forward to reading. I’m positive that David is going to serve up another quality read in X-Factor #24. Let’s go ahead and hit this review.

Creative Team
Writer: Peter David
Artist: Pablo Raimondi

Art Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10.
Story Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10.
Overall Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10.

Synopsis: We begin with Huber brawling with Rictor. We cut to Layla entering a subway station to go back to the X-Factor brownstone. We see Nicole following Layla into the subway station.

We cut to Jamie having formed a igloo made of his dupes in order to try and keep himself, Guido and Rahne warm. Guido takes this moment to break the news that he is leaving the team to accept Val Cooper’s offer to make him the Sheriff of Mutant Town.

We slide over to Siryn and Monet landing the elevator with the parents and the kids on a mountain top in a remote area. The grandparents are already in a tent on the mountain and rush to great the kids. The parents bitch out Monet and Siryn for giving the kids back to the grandparents.

Monet then tries to check in with Jamie to give him an update and gets no response. The same thing happens when she tries to contract Guido and Rahne. Monet then rockets off to check in on the X-Factor brownstone while Siryn stays with the grandparents and the kids. We see the parents whispering to each other. The husband compliments his wife for how well her parents have played their part in this entire ruse.

We shift back to Huber and Rictor still brawling. Rictor is immune to all the different mutant powers that Huber possesses. Huber is stunned that Rictor is immune to all his powers. Huber thinks about how his abilities to assume all the powers of every mutant on Earth have overwhelmed his body. That Huber has so many voices in his head. But, some relief came after M-Day. The endless howling of millions of voices was greatly reduced to a mere dull roar.

Huber then realized that M-Day held the key to his finally being free of all the voices in his mind. If he could eliminate all the rest of the mutants on Earth then he would be free from the voices.

We cut to Layla standing at the edge of the subway platform. Nicole walks up behind Layla. Layla sees a penny and reaches down to grab it just as Nicole rushes to push Layla in front of the subway car. Nicole goes flying over Layla’s bent over body. Nicole lands on the subway tracks and gets run over by a subway car. Layla stands up and smiles at her penny.

We see Nicole on the subway tracks. Her torn up body reveals that she is a machine. Huber used Forge’s powers to build Nicole and implanted in her a chaotic randomizing generator so that Nicole’s mere presence near Layla would be enough to thwart Layla’s abilities for the short-term.

We hop back to Rictor brawling with Huber. Monet arrives on the scene and joins the fray. We cut back to Jamie, Rahne and Guido in the remote arctic location. Jamie’s dupes have collapsed due to the bitter cold. Rahne mentions that if they die now, at least that means she won’t have killed…Rahne’s voice then trails off. Jamie asks Rahne “Kill who?” Rahne answers that it doesn’t matter anymore. The three heroes are all about to pass out and die.

We shift back to Monet and Huber brawling. Rictor grabs the device that Huber used to transport Rahne, Jamie and Guido away. We then see the Terrigan Crystal shards fall off of Rictor’s spine and fall down a sewer grate. Rictor activates the teleportation device and we see Rahne, Guido and Jamie all stumble back through the teleportation gate. Huber then chooses a tactical retreat and teleports away from the scene. End of story.

We get another Endangered Species back-up story. We see an alternate reality Beast begging for help from King Blackagar. The astral forms of Dr. Strange and Beast watch the scene. Dr. Strange proceeds to take Beast to all the different alternate realities to show Beast that in all of them he fails to create a cure for the loss of the mutant gene.

They arrive back at Dr. Strange’s home. Beast says that he feels so small right now. Dr. Strange asks Beast what he is going to do. Beast answers that he doesn’t know. End of issue.

The Good: X-Factor #24 was another fine read. David turns in a tightly plotted issue as all the various loose ends come together nicely. We see various un-related plotlines in Nicole’s joining X-Factor, the grandparents hiring X-Factor to get their grandkids back and Josef’s Huber plot to kill all the remaining mutants all merge together to provide for a rather satisfying ending.

I dig that Nicole was a machine specifically constructed with a chaotic randomizing generator specifically designed to throw off Layla’s powers. That explains why Layla has not liked Nicole since first meeting her and why Layla’s powers seemed to be on the fritz lately.

I also liked that Huber used the grandparents as a simple ploy to remove the two members of X-Factor with psychic powers that could have hindered his plans to influence the remaining members of X-Factor.

It was cool to see that nothing is irrelevant on X-Factor. Every little thing that David does is done so for a reason. And that no matter how random or small the plotline might be, you can rest assured that it will play a role in some large storyline.

As all good writers do, as David is winding up a major story arc and resolving various plotlines, he takes the time to plant the seeds for several new plotlines. First, we have the continuing mystery surrounding the Terrigan Crystal shards. These shards enable Rictor to become immune to all of Huber’s mutant powers. Once the battle was over, the shards then fall off of Rictor’s back and tumble down a sewer drain.

Just what is going on with the Terrigan Crystal shards? Do they have some sort of mind of their own? I’m curious to see what David has in store for us with the Terrigan Crystal shards.

David also further develops the plotline involving Rahne’s vision of her killing Jamie and Layla on their Wedding night. Rahne, in a near-death moment, nearly tells Jamie about her vision of the future. Rahne is increasingly unstable whenever in her wolf-from and I expect David to investigate this plotline a bit further in upcoming issues.

David gives us a third plotline to deal with in the upcoming issues with Guido’s shocking decision to accept Val Cooper’s offer to make him the Sheriff of Mutant Town. I really didn’t think that Guido would take the job. This is sure to provide plenty of drama between the members of X-Factor. Especially considering Val’s history with X-Factor as well as Jamie’s publicized stance that Mutant Town is X-Factor’s turf and Jamie’s unwillingness to sign on to the Registration Act.

X-Factor #24 provides the reader with plenty of David’s usual well crafted dialogue. X-Factor has some of the best dialogue that you will find out of any comic book currently on the market. David has also done a phenomenal job creating impressive chemistry between the members of X-Factor. The type of chemistry that we get in X-Factor is superior to the level of chemistry on other team titles.

The dialogue and the chemistry go hand in hand with the strong character work that David pulls off on X-Factor. All the members of X-Factor, with the possible exception of Guido, have such wonderfully developed personalities. The characters seem to spring forth from the pages of the comic book. They all seem so realistic and the dialogue flows nice and naturally.

Of course, that doesn’t mean that David didn’t give us any action. We got some quality brawling between Huber and Rictor as Huber shows off his vast array of mutant powers. X-Factor is not a title that relies on action to carry a storyline. And David may go several issues without much action at all. However, that doesn’t mean that David can’t provide for some good brawling when it is required.

And the best “fight” scene is the one between Layla and Nicole. I love how Layla’s powers kick in and Nicole goes flying to her death as Layla leans over to innocently pick up a penny. Layla is such a unique and entertaining character. Her powers always add a bit of spontaneity and wildness to any story.

Pablo Raimondi turns in his usual solid artwork. His style is a pleasant match to the mood of David’s writing on this title.

The Bad: The Endangered Species storyline has gone from boring to just a total and complete waste of paper. I would much rather get eight more pages of my precious X-Factor as opposed to the hopelessly mopey Beast. Any interest I initially had in the Endangered Species story has pretty much been killed off after so many plodding and dreary reads.

Overall: X-Factor #24 was another enjoyable read. David gives a satisfying ending to the conflict with Josef Huber. And David also makes sure that he continues to nurture along several new intriguing plotlines to take the place of the one that ends in this issue. X-Factor is one of Marvel’s most reliable reads. This title treats the reader to some of the best character work and dialogue that you will find anywhere. I definitely recommend giving X-Factor a try.

2 thoughts on “Comic Book Review: X-Factor #24

  1. Layla is such a great character, and her powers, and how Peter David writes her powers is brilliant.
    I also enjoyed how all the different plotlines weaved together.

  2. FYI, that wasn’t just any remote mountaintop that Monet and Theresa took the grandkids too. It was Devil’s Tower Monument in Wyoming. Made famous in Close Encounters.

    Great review. I KNEW I wasn’t the only one completely digging Layla and the way David has written this title.

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