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17 June 2007 @ 11:09 am
Book Review - Origin  
Origin is the long awaited revelation of Wolverine's past. Ever since the character was introduced in the seventies there has been a deliberate air of mystery about him. Little clues were dropped from time to time and we learned a good bit of his recent history but where he came from and who he really was remained the subject of fanfic, not canon.

Until now.

I'll take the fanfic please. I haven't actually read any dealing with this topic but I am pretty certain that I can find at least one fan written story that would be better. It shouldn't be hard. Really good fanfic authors tend to be careful about stealing large chunks of plot from other stories for a start. The lifts from The Secret Garden and Rurouni Kenshin are the most obvious to me but other bits of the plot seem just a little too familiar as well. There are echoes of a classic Batman story at one point, hints of Lady Chatterley's Lover, and just a touch of Huckleberry Finn. I could probably figure out a few more "homages" if I wanted to reread the thing and do some searching but it's not worth the time.

Now, a reused plot can still serve as the basis for a good story if you have good characters but the reason that the reused plot stands out so much here is that even the characterization is lifted from the very stories that were plundered. Unfortunately instead of being the vivid, real, people they were when they had other names from other authors, these characters are bad photocopies.

As the story goes from one plundered plot bit to another they change to fit their analogs not necessarily in the manner the people they were at the beginning would change under the circumstances. A character will be filled with anger and the need for vengeance and then without explanation soften toward the object of his rage and spare him, or help him. People do stupid OOC things just to advance the plot.

The art is not that great either. Richard Isanove did an outstanding job on the coloring. I love the warm firelight on skin that he does. The problem is that they went from Andy Kubert's pencils directly to the finished art without an inker to clean things up. The result looks unfinished at times. Faces can be cartoonish and scenes with a lot of visual elements often seem muddy and unfocused.

I would recommend checking this out from the library if you spot it, just to stay up to date on one of the most popular Marvel characters, but unless you absolutely have to have anything Wolverine related save your $14.99 for something more worthwhile. The classic Chris Clairmont Wolverine series is being offered in  collected volumes and it would be a much better use of your time and money.