X-Statix #21 Review

Reviewer: Jesse Baker
Story Title: The Good and the Famous

Written by: Peter Milligan
Penciled by: Mike Allred
Inked by: Nick Craine
Colored by: Laura Allred
Lettered by: Nick Piekos
Editor: Axel Alonso
Publisher: Marvel Knights/Marvel Comics

With rumors that X-Statix is on the chopping block due to low sales and Marvel abandoning anything remotely controversial, the move to the Marvel Knights line for Milligan and Allred’s R-Rated Mutantfest seems to be a sign that the sword of cancellation is about to be dropped onto the book. Even Milligan has hinted as much, describing this X-Statix versus Avengers arc in the same way most writers describe final stories that are designed basically to showcase how good the series is in order to bring things full-circle.

So with this arc, we get the X-Statix team meeting up with the Avengers to rescue Doop from a group of politically incorrect Russian terrorist group who dress like it’s the 1800s and have removed Doop’s brain in order to harness the awesome might of the popular X-Statix member. The Avengers get called in to help in the rescue operation but naturally the two teams clash over the flamboyant and narcissistic attitudes of the members of X-Statix. Except for Vivisector, who’s too busy flirting with Hawkeye to notice Captain America and the Anarchist having to be physically restrained from each other while they try and carry out the rescue mission.

The issue ends with Milligan shattering Doop’s brain into multiple pieces which are scattered across the globe, setting up a race between both teams to see who can obtain the pieces first. Of course Milligan makes sure the motivations for the two sides are grey as the X-Statixs want to get the pieces first so that they can taunt the Avengers with their failure while the Avengers want to secure Doop’s brain and Doop himself, since they feel Doop would be better off with them. Milligan though tries to sugarcoat this “shades of grey” nature of this arc with nostalgia by having the Avengers harken back to their previous encounter with the Defenders but this shout-out is overshadowed by Milligan following it with a bitchy retort by the Avengers about how much better they are because of the fact that they aren’t as narcissistic as the X-Statixs.

The art for this issue is hit and miss with emphasis on “miss” due to the craptastic drawing of the Avengers. In particular, Allred’s Iron Man and Captain America are just plain hideous looking.