The new Marauders descend in Marauders #1, Aurora, Psylocke, Bishop, Tempo, Somnus, and Kitty Pryde.

Marauders #1 Review

Written by: Steve Orlando

Art by: Eleonora Carlini

Coloring by: Matt Milla

Lettering by: VC’s Ariana Maher

Akihiro is burned alive in Marauders #1.
The world is so cruel to Akihiro.

Marauders #1 is the only one of the original Dawn of X titles outside of the main X-Men title to completely reboot. They have a new #1, a new creative team, and new roster as well. Despite that, it refrains from dropping a lot of what the previous Marauders series accomplished. The tone is still light-hearted, and it ups the casual tone to the team’s interpersonal relationships.

One way this book really improves is with the roster. While the last Marauders book had one of the strongest casts of the X-line, they couldn’t get all the spotlight. There was no room for anyone new with powerhouses like Storm, Emma Frost, Kitty Pryde, and Iceman competing for page space. Half of them didn’t even get it. Despite having a more diverse team, and more characters to characterize, this first issue successfully spreads out the love more than the last series typically did. This could change, but it bodes well.

I particularly like how the creative team handles having a love triangle between Akihiro, Aurora, and Somnus. Somnus may be Akihiro’s ex, but he doesn’t have an antagonistic bone in his body for his ex’s current flame, Aurora. Aurora also holds no jealous for the emotional intimacy that Akihiro and Somnus still have for each other. New thruple? I’m all about it.

Psylocke attacks Cassandra Nova in Marauders #1.
Get her, Kwannon!

At the same time, while Marauders was my favorite series during the first year of Dawn of X, it fell by the wayside as it moved away from its plot. This book picks up the idea of ferrying lost mutants to safety in name only. Rather going around the world bringing mutants to Krakoa, they’re going to save ancient mutants from the Shi’ar. It’s a fun premise that does threaten some major X-Men lore, but it’s perfect for building long standing tensions, stakes, and surprises. I’m optimistic on where this book can go based on this issue.

The one thing that never worked for me as I was reading, was the art style. The X-Men line has maintained a similar enough look that characters who appear across multiple titles are easily recognizable. While that’s not untrue here, it’s the most out there from the rest. It has real charm and character, but it definitely threw me for a loop. I’m going to need time to get used to it. Because of this I warn fans of the previous Marauders to prepare themselves. This will be a fun but strong departure from the norm.

So, as the the third title to come out of Destiny of X, I do think Marauders #1 is the weakest. Immortal X-Men and X-Men Red are beyond amazing, but don’t let them make you think Marauders #1 is any less than great.

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