Writer: Ben Percy
Art: Stephen Segovia, Guru-eFX, VC’s Joe Caramagna, Tom Muller, Dustin Weaver, and Edgar Delgado
Release Date: January 29th, 2020
The breakout Dawn of X title, X-FORCE #6 by Ben Percy, continues as this ”dark orchestra” proceeds to track down threats to their mutant nation of Krakoa. Led by one of the most dedicated mutants Beast, this dynamic counterintelligence group is finding their rhythm while putting out would be fires and making their efforts practicality serene to the outside world. As this issue blossoms, let’s dive into X-FORCE #6 and see how their conductor (Beast) takes matters into his own hands when a sliver of new “technology” jeopardizes the safety of their civilization.
Readers, as the X-titles go, many of the series have been up and down. X-MEN has remained pretty durable but has faltered in the past couple of months (excluding this issue which was phenomenal). MARAUDERS has been extremely fun and entertaining but doesn’t seem to connect well to the overall HOXPOX storyline in my opinion. NEW MUTANTS has been terrific when Hickman has been writing the narrative BUT when Ed Brisson jumps on; we jump from Sh’ar space to exhausting cornfields that appear totally unrelated to the story. And lastly, EXCALIBUR and FALLEN ANGELS happen to be beating to their own confusing drum. Now, I bring this up because, through the entirety of the Dawn of X, Ben Percy has delivered a series that checks all the boxes. Issue after issue, X-FORCE has felt important. X-FORCE has retained a purpose, suspense, action, and related characters we’ve all grown to love throughout the years to the overall story in a compelling way. X-FORCE is what this reviewer thought each of the Dawn of X titles was supposed to be. Sadly for many of the titles, that’s not the case. However, for the basis of this reviewer, it’s fantastic news for Percy’s X-FORCE. Heck, I’ve argued to many online, as well as in other reviews, that this series may be more important to the overall story than any other X-book right now.
As for this specific issue, fans will love the fast-paced, high octane action then leaps off the page. Immediately from Jump Street, our crew begins tangling with these plant-like, biotech creatures. After a quick flashback to catch readers up on the narrative, Percy lays down the new threat in an easy to digest way a establishes another new angle (like X-MEN #5 also does this week) for humanity to regain their dominance over the mutants rise to power. Without spoiling the botanical details, simply understand that human science has once again made another attempt to forcefully evolve the human race. Needless to say, it not only doesn’t go well BUT some loose ends may come back to bloom in their future.
Some of the remarkable zeniths of this issue are the portrayal of Beast and Jean Grey throughout the issue. This isn’t your peaceful and calming Hank McCoy nor the Beast containing admirable laurels. Percy’s Beast is cold, calculating, and rationalizes tough choices in almost a dark and almost dirty way. As of now, his ideals seem on the up and up. However, this issue shows Hank blurring some lines towards the dark in a variety of ways that seem to ruffle Jean’s Phoenix feathers a bit. I can only wonder if this Beast begins to take a walk on the dark side really soon, which is overall intriguing to this critic. Personally, I see a divide in the future of the X-Men and it may start right here with the minor morality choices that certain team members are willing to manipulate to their advantage. Jean vs Hank could be on the horizon.
This reviewer also loved how the issue concluded. Unwittingly, Beast has contributed to something extremely detrimental to mutantkind as well as humanity. Mr. “Five Moves Ahead” may not be as prepared as we may think. But ultimately, the focus of the issue is on the human condition. Science and Technology always come across as good, resourceful, and promising until they are placed in the wrong hands of some who are frightened or searching for control. Percy sees humanity in this story as the villain. However, if you look close enough, you’ll see that the mutants themselves are not void of any wrongdoing. Each side is beginning to make questionable decisions for their version of freedom and liberty. Isn’t that happening within our own country today? Heck, within our own world? Ultimately, this reader leaves with some heavy questions to ponder as we dive into the next phase of the Dawn of X.
Ben Percy continues to make X-FORCE the most pertinent and aggressive X-title on the market. Each issue connects to the overall story well, holds weight within the narrative, and displays purpose, importance, and drive within the story. When you read X-FORCE, you feel like you’re not only getting your money’s worth but also leave the issue feeling like the story has substance and value. Percy creates another fascinatingly well-written tale that’s easy to read and hard to forget. This series and issue are a must buy to any X-fan and should be on your pull list. Understandably, financial cuts may need to be made with the borage of titles on the market. However, X-FORCE is the one that NEEDS to stay on your list until further notice.