Review: Uncanny X-Men Annual #1 by Bendis, Sorrentino and Maiolo | Fanboys Anonymous

Review: Uncanny X-Men Annual #1 by Bendis, Sorrentino and Maiolo

Posted by Sean Hamilton Thursday, December 18, 2014
Eva Bell Uncanny X-Men Annual
Uncanny X-Men Annual #1 (2014)
cover by Andrea Sorrentino
Let the X-Men take you on a journey through time and space.

Marvel has been using time travel and its effects for altering past, present, and future to maximum effect throughout their comic universe. This is nothing new, but it is slowly building to a big event. Uncanny X-Men Annual #1 is a snapshot examination of how time travel effects an individual mutant, with some wider ramifications for audiences to consider

In this issue, Eva Bell (aka Tempus), a new young mutant in training, is caught in a time tempest and lost to the eons, when she can't control her time-traveling abilities.

The story follows the missing events from Uncanny X-Men #17, where Eva went missing during the group's training exercises in Tabula Rasa. For a person such as Eva, with the ability to traverse time, her existence is always in the here and now. However, as part of Cyclops' new wave of powerful mutants, this is a good setup for a character who has been teased to have a big future in the pages of X-Men comics.

Eva is flung to a nightmarish future
Eva Bell jumps through time to an apocalyptic future
Eva was first introduced in the launch of the All-New X-Men #1 by Brian Michael Bendis and Stuart Immonen in 2012. We have seen the character progression from a frightened teenager to a strong-willed young woman, though the later stages of her advancement were saved for the special releases this month. Bendis has been talking up the Uncanny X-Men and All-New X-Men Annuals for the past few months. Despite such hype, the first part of this story has lived up to most of my expectations, but not in the way I anticipated.

The star of this show is first and foremost the wonderful art by Andrea Sorrentino and colors by Marcelo Maiolo. Both artists work in a collaboration that provides gripping and memorable images. The layout from Sorrentino is dramatic, but the hues from Maiolo add a depth to the art that could have been lost in other hands. Of course, Bendis provides a strong story around which such artistic abilities can flourish. Although, without the second part of this story, it is difficult to gauge the lasting impact of the story itself.

Eva time travels to the wild west
Eva meets the Rawhide Kid
Bendis does offer some nice little touches worth further mentioning. The cameo by the Rawhide Kid was a great story interaction to bring a historically significant Marvel character to some new level of resonance. The foreshadowing of Illyana Rasputin (aka Magik) as a Sorcerer Supreme and training alongside Dr Strange in earlier issues of Uncanny X-Men finds some fruition in this issue also.

Sorrentino's depiction of Eva's mutant ability to create time pockets is one of the most artistic expressions I have seen lately to show off a superhero power. It is great to see such an interpretation given. Sorrentino and Bendis have the reader following along at a nice pace through this issue. There is a natural rise and fall of tempo, with some dramatic scenes at the end, to provide that crucial cliffhanger as we anticipate the next installment of the story.

Eva finally settles in one place in time
Eva makes it to 2099
Ultimately this is an issue of Uncanny X-Men worth checking out. It is a strong story, paired it with a unique artistic style that produces an intriguing experience.

While this story has filled in some of what happened to Eva, I did come away with more questions than answers. Hopefully these will be answered with the follow-up in next week's annual.

Did you get what you hoped for out of this issue? What did you think of Sorrentino's art? Where do you think we are heading next in the All-New X-Men Annual?

Leave your thoughts and comments below and make sure you come back next time for the concluding chapter of this two-part story.

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