Written by Cullen Bunn
Pencils by Gabriel Walta
Colors by Jordie Bellaire
Published by Marvel Comics
“The past often plo’s the course of one’s future” and so it is about time that the true Magneto, the mutant Malcolm X, bubbles back to the surface in Cullen Bunn’s new series. This issue is a solid set up for an ongoing Magneto solo series. Magneto has had several over the years, but Bunn’s story sets itself apart in an immediately gripping way. The story begins with an obviously frazzled coffee shop employee being interviewed by the police. The barista tells the police about a man who entered the cafe, and ripped fillings out of the mouth of one of the customers, replacing them in a most gruesome way, with street signs. Further in the issue, we find out that this is part of Magneto’s vendetta against those who would harm mutants. Now free of the Uncanny X-Men, Magneto is spending his free time tracking down murderers, anti-mutant supporters, and other nasties.
The various “X” series have lost touch with the Magneto of old, allowing him to become a neutered, simpering version of his true self. However, after serving as Scott’s lapdog for so long, Magnus has ventured out on his own in an effort to find himself. In his own words, “A monster can only masquerade as a man for so long.” Bunn’s series shows the monster unleashed, bringing the powerful, vindictive Magneto back. Issue 1 is masterfully crafted, and the story leads you not by a leash, but by a hand around the throat through the intrigue and suspense. This issue reads much better than Bunn’s previous work on Fearless Defenders and Walta’s art compliments expertly. Though Walta’s art does seem a bit overly reminiscent of Aja’s work on Hawkeye, but that is not necessarily a bad thing. In the final pages, Walta’s illustrations highlight the various metal objects hidden throughout the scene, showing Magneto’s consideration of each as a weapon. Good art should serve as an extension of the storyline, and Walta’s performance illustrates Magneto’s state of mind perfectly. Everyone is an enemy, everything is a weapon.
Obviously this issue is the first of a further series, but Bunn’s history leaves the reader wondering where he will go next, and how much longer it will continue. While it isn’t exactly a fresh take to cast Magnus in the role of anti-hero, it is nice to see him in a more down-to-Earth way. Tracking down offenders and making them pay in a Punisher-esque way, certainly makes for a fun to read series. In short, its nice to see Magneto’s return to his old ways, and the reader will hope for a nice long run for Bunn and Walta.