November 16, 2007 Posted by admin


ISSUE: 125

DATE: 20/03/02




xforce125When Marvel kick-started its X-titles last year, many feared the changes their favourite titles would be undergoing as a result of the company’s new experimental editorial regime. However, while fans dreaded what might be in store for flagship titles X-Men and Uncanny X-Men, the thought of yet another X-Force relaunch was greeted with little enthusiasm. And yet, for me, Pete Milligan and Mike Allred’s mutant pop culture reimagining is easily the most consistently inventive and entertaining of the lot.

This issue finds the playboy-sponsored super team tackling a South American dictatorship in an attempt to boost their flagging PR appeal, the recruitment of yet another team member and the prospect that one of them might soon be taking a permanent vacation. As usual, there’s plenty of trademark black humour as Milligan plays the team off against not just each other, but also their bratty sponsor, manipulative government agents and the media. New recruit Dead Girl makes a welcome reappearance and I can’t help but feel that she’ll play a major part in the death of one the main cast next issue…

Mike Allred’s work is always stunning and it’s great to see him being exposed to the kind of mainstream audience that wonders what all the fuss is surrounding Madman. His lines are smooth and strong, backed up by wife Laura’s bold and inventive use of colour, and you get a real sense that he’s having a ball with this cast of varied characters. What’s more, with many artists struggling to even meet regular monthly deadlines, it’s even more impressive that Allred manages to find the time to ink his own work, creating a unique look that gives the title its own visual flavour.

However what really appeals to me about Milligan and Allred’s X-Force is that the title always a real… anarchistic feel to it. It almost feels like a cheeky two-fingered salute to Marvel as every month they attempt to subvert the reader’s perceptions of what a mutant superhero title should be. Compared to Warren Ellis’ disappointing fumblings with X-Force, Milligan and Allred have managed to steer their band of misfits in a genuinely exciting and inventive direction.