Exiles V8 Earn Your Wings TP Fant Four + X-Men! 1st print


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Exiles Vol. 8: Earn Your Wings (X-Men) Paperback
Tony Bedard/Mizuki Sakakibara

They are the Exiles, reality-hopping nomads forced to repari the broken chains of time. Failure means a fate worse than death; success, a new reality and a new mission. The Exiles’ latest assignment brings them face-to-face with the Fantastic Four and the X-Men! Will the team be able to stand on their own AGAINST the Marvel Universe’s greatest heroes?

Collects EXILES #46-51.

Publisher Marvel
Paperback 144 pages
ISBN-13 978-0785114598
Weight 10.4 ounces
Dimensions 6.75 x 0.25 x 10.25 inches

I still can’t believe I totally missed this series on its initial run. I mean, I can believe it, because I didn’t read comic regularly for over a decade. I just can’t believe my bad luck with it. The last time I’d read comics monthly, the X-titles were crap and I was glad to drop them. It figures when I’m not paying attention one of the best, most interesting and well-written X-titles is released.

EXILES, Vol. 8: Earn Your Wings picks up where the previous volume left off. The Exiles, the teams of random mutants from several different universes who travel the dimensions righting wrongs all at the behest of The Timebroker who promises them they can return home once they’ve set the world right again, have landed in the regular Marvel Universe, the 616 universe readers of old are familiar with.

Their mission this time, though, is a cryptic one. “Leave your possessions and earn your wings.”

It takes a while, and a knock down, drag out with the Fantastic Four, before they realize the meaning of the message. They must leave one of their members, Nocturne, behind, and claim a new members, Beak, of the X-Men. Nocturne’s power is to possess people, while Beak is a man-bird. Once they’ve completed the mission, they still have two more in this volume, which spans issued #46-51 of the monthly series.

Next up they have to face the Impossible Man in a world gone mad, and last they’re transported to a world where one of their members, Mimic, was never recruited by Charles Xavier, where he instead turned to the dark side and joined Magneto’s Brotherhood of Evil Mutants.

But this time the mission isn’t so cut and dried. The actual mission is to make sure Mimic doesn’t escape from prison. However, loyal Brotherhood member Mystique disguises herself as Exiles leader Blink and tells the team they have a different mission: help Mimic escape from prison.

This volume was a much more fun book to read than the somber and violent previous volume, but both are just as enjoyable to read. Tony Bedard has taken over as writer, and he’s got a lighter touch than Chuck Austen or Jim Calafiore, who along with Mizuki Sakakibara, is still on as artist.

I think this volume was more action-oriented, with some very nice character beats as well. However, I don’t think this book is for the newcomer. The previous volume, A BLINK IN TIME, read very well for a first Exiles book, everything I needed to get caught up from zero seemed to be there to make it a great book. This one, however, I think reads better with that previous knowledge already in place. One thing I think Austen and Calafiore did much better in the previous book was set up the world and familiarize the reader with it so they don’t feel so out of place. Bedard, however, seemed more content to just keep the story moving. He did drop in the expository bits to help the reader understand the situation, it just didn’t feel as natural or as engaging as the last book.

That being said, I still enjoyed this book VERY much and am so glad I still have two more Exiles collected editions to go. If the rest of them are this good, I really need to go back and collect all the volumes I don’t have yet.

Collects Exiles #46-51. Near mint 1st print.