Review: Marvel's Cyclops #8 by Layman, Garron and Sotomayer | Fanboys Anonymous

Review: Marvel's Cyclops #8 by Layman, Garron and Sotomayer

Posted by Sean Hamilton Thursday, January 1, 2015
Cyclops and Vileena get close
Cyclops #8 cover by Alexander Lozano
Cyclops is a hero in the making.

With the series Cyclops, a new generation of comic enthusiasts gets to see the rise of one of the most important figures among the X-Men as a teenager and mutant. At the same time, we are fortunate to see a range of artistic styles and expressions of the characters surrounding Cyclops, some of which are being managed on the periphery.

This time, the Starjammers are safe, and just in the nick of time. This doesn't really come as a big surprise; the drama set up around this plot point wasn't particularly strong because it competed with the captivity of Cyclops and Corsair. The Starjammers' dire situation served its purpose and now has been resolved and handed off, with the team to be reunited at some point in the future. Given this, it feels like we can move on and focus on father and son again.

It is good to see writer John Layman and editor Katie Kubert make this decisive move. The more entertaining aspects of the story are about Cyclops and how he will save his dad and get free of the pirate Malafect.

The Starjammers are sticky situation
The Starjammers are saved
Now that we are three issues into the next arc and the creative team has had some time to gel, I admit I am missing the previous approach to colors in this book by Chris Sotomayer. Any change in the balance of the creative team would of course produce a new feel to the series, yet comparing Sotomayer's colors from the first arc to now, the style is less dramatic now. While this probably suits the style Javier Garron brings to the pencil and inks, it is a shame, because Sotomayer was integral to the great artistic look of Cyclops from the start, and now his work seems downplayed a little. A great take-home message from this, however, is the importance a colorist has in the final product audiences view; this should not be underestimated.

Regardless, Garron has settled into the art role well now and is making this series his own. There is more confidence coming through in the art, I find this represented in the double-page portion in the very middle of Cyclops #8. It is from here that the story itself is starting to get interesting, much like the titular character is in this issue. It also seems as though Garron is toning down the previous cartoon qualities of the art.

Cyclops helps save the Starjammers
Cyclops helps save the Starjammers

Layman is picking up the tempo in the second half of this issue. Within a few pages we see Cyclops save his fellow pirate crew members, two deaths, and most importantly the Vortex is introduced. This last item will play an important part of the upcoming event from Marvel, Black Vortex, early in 2015. Then let's not forget the romantic interest in the series picking up a notch, with Vileena making a move on Cyclops, whose awkward demeanor was a priceless moment.

Cyclops is starting to feel like a series back on track. While I'm still not sure about the longevity of the series, and Marvel certainly isn't squeamish about cancelling a series that isn't performing, we are at least getting a more entertaining issue here. The incorporation of the series into the Black Vortex event could help lift its exposure, yet on the other hand the this is the type of book that could have a predetermined fate once the main character is reunited with the other original time-displaced X-Men.

Despite this, what do you think about Cyclops #8? Do you think the series is back on track? Where do you see it going in the future? Leave us your thoughts and comments below.

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