Weapon X #6
Author: Greg Pak
Artist: Marc Borstel & Ibraim Roberson
Colorist: Frank D’Armata
This is it! An issue with non-stop action! It’s all building to that final showdown!
Previously: Weapon X, under the command of reverend William Stryker, is trying to create an unstoppable killing machine using DNA from several mutants. They are ready for their final batch, batch H, divided into both an alpha and a beta. The Beta version is using a devout follower of Stryker to transform into a Hulk/Wolverine hybrid. The X-Men and Hulk have found the Weapon X facility and are hoping to save the kid (Bobby) and stop Weapon X.
Currently: The X-Men head past security in a stolen delivery car and crash it right through the front entrance. Domino drops a few guards using tranquilizers and Warpath literally tears an opening into the elevator shaft. Logan reminds Hulk that they aren’t necessarily there to rescue Bobby. They may have to kill him. That doesn’t sit well with Hulk so he decides that he’ll do the rescuing and the rest can go after Stryker.
The mutants (and Hulk) get off before the elevator shaft explodes, just in time to see a horde of cyborgs running at them. Logan and Sabretooth tear through the cyborgs to find a room full of scientists, scared for their lives. They try to run through the door opposite the mutants but are impaled by the cyborgs on the other side. The cyborgs attack, managing to actually beat down the Hulk and somehow avoid both Logan and Sabretooth. Domino points out that they have her luck powers. So she tosses her gun, allowing it to fire at the robots, leaps behind them, and blasts them both in the head…because…um…they can only be lucky if they can see their target???
Stryker and Carla (the woman who brought Bobby to the facility) make a hasty retreat. Stryker orders Dr. Alba to release the new batches. Alba, however, refuses, citing she’s doing this for scientific advancement, not necessarily to kill mutants, and ending an experiment early ruins the experiment. She even kindly reminds Stryker that she’s not one of his fanatics. The X-Men track the transmission but find vats of the failed experiments, one of which attacks Domino. While Hulk and Warpath try to help Domino, the other three (Logan, Sabretooth, and Deathstrike) head off to take care of Stryker, once and for all.
Once Domino is safe (in Warpath’s arms), Hulk realizes that the other three went to kill and he’s so intent on the “no killing” rule, that he goes after them as well, instead of rescuing Bobby. Hulk defeats all three (although to be fair, Logan wasn’t really trying to fight the Hulk) but Logan then reminds Cho that because he broke from his mission, it would be too late to save Bobby.
And just then, the timer expires, and Alba is pleased to release Batch H-Beta. A Hulk with friggin’ claws!
Thoughts/Reviews/Snide Comments: I gotta say…I was mostly disappointed with this issue. But after reading it a second time, maybe not as much as I was at first. The art, though… it’s hard to differentiate Ibraim’s art from Marc’s, but generally it looks like Marc is handling most of the action scenes and he’s just…very boring. The art is very static, the action isn’t very fluid. And for an issue where there’s supposed to be nonstop action, that’s a problem. I honestly think Land would’ve been better for this issue (which does make me wonder…why hasn’t he drawn the last two issues?).
I had a big issue with Stryker appearing to panic. I mean, he’s always been calm and methodical. I find it hard to believe that he would just turn tail like that. I get that he’s facing a bunch of killer mutants and of all people he deserves to be killed…but he practically begs for his life before Hulk saves him. It just seemed out of character. On top of that…what the &*%^ was up with the cyborgs suddenly having Domino’s luck power? They haven’t had that yet! And in fact, they never even managed to get her DNA. It seemed like Pak changed his mind and decided to give them her luck power, but that was a horrible decision. It just didn’t fit. Plus…since when does she need to see her target to be lucky? I think this is the first time that’s been mentioned since her first appearance. It was a blatant dues ex machina that didn’t even need to be brought up if Pak had just left her luck powers out of the cyborgs.
But this issue wasn’t all bad. We got some almost humorous potential sexual tension between Domino and Warpath (kind of but not really…we’ll see if it goes somewhere). I loved Dr. Alba flat out refusing to follow Stryker’s command because they had not met the established protocol of the experiment. It required a certain time for each batch and she was going to make sure they got it! And then to point out that she was neither a soldier nor a believer was priceless.
Hulk going off mission was also great, especially because it means that he sacrificed the boy they came to save to prevent the killing of a truly evil man. I’m hoping that comes back to haunt him. He may be forced to kill Bobby.
And I’ll be honest…seeing a Hulk with Wolverine’s claws was kind of cool.
Final Thoughts: It was a disappointment. Bad art, coupled with some silly writing, when I had come to expect more from Pak, just made this issue probably the worst of the bunch. It had its bright spots, but I think Pak really needs to turn it up a notch in the next issue to redeem himself.
Rating: 5.5/10. I guess if 5.5 is the worst of the bunch, that’s actually pretty good.
To Be Continued: in Totally Awesome Hulk #22