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Marvel Universe Series IV Revisited, Part 18

I’m pretty sure that for the longest time, the X-Cutioner’s Song card was the primary information that I had on the story; same for the Infinity War. I have yet to actually read the Spirits of Venom story, nor the Hulk vs. Leader (though I’ve snagged a couple copies of the issue referenced from bargain bins, for the shiny cover!)

These ‘Famous Battles’ cards continue to be some of the more substantive cards of the set, as well as being interesting reference points looking back…to me, most notably the Wolverine vs. Cyber card, and realizing how relatively “young” that conflict was at the time and even leading up to what happened with Cyber in the run-up to Wolverine #100 shortly after the Age of Apocalypse stuff.

Not a whole lot of worthwhile thoughts to say about these beyond that…

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The ’90s Revisited: Wolverine #79

wolverine079Cyber! Cyber! Burning Bright!

Script: Larry Hama
Penciler: Adam Kubert
Inkers: Mark Farmer and Mike Sellers
Lettering: Pat Brosseau
Coloring: Steve Buccellato
Editor: Bob Harras
Published by: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $1.75
Cover Date: March, 1994

I was introduced to the X-Men in 1992 or so–though I have a vague memory of a 1989ish viewing of the one-shot “pilot” Pryde of the X-men. My clearest memory of early discovery of the X-Men is a re-viewing of that episode along with the initial premiere of the 1990s X-Men cartoon. And of course, Wolverine was quite a stand-out character. But it was barely a year after I was introduced t othe character that he lost his adamantium in the Fatal Attractions crossover…it would be about six years and another 70-odd issues of “bone-claw Wolverine.”

Which makes this issue that much more significant to its time: now that his claws are “just” bone, an interesting question was answered as we learned that yes, indeed, his claws could now be broken.

And just as the cover focuses on the agonized broken-claw Wolverine, the issue itself isn’t all that memorable other than the fact that Wolverine’s claws are broken. Musing at recent events, Wolverine finds himself having to face Cyber, yet another villain after him for his adamantium…only to have the villain realize that Wolvie no longer has the famed metal, and is far more susceptible to a sound beating. During their scrap, Cyber sees an opening and takes it–stomping the exposed claws and breaking them off, a whole new experience for either character.

So, not a whole lot to the story itself, but definitely an extremely key moment in Wolverine’s history…the first time his claws had ever been broken. And the question also set out would be: do they regenerate? And how would this affect the character moving forward?

Visually, I quite enjoyed this revisitation of Kubert‘s take on Wolverine. As this is from very early in my experience reading the Wolverine solo title, this really IS “my” Wolverine. I’d forgotten all the double-page “tall” layouts, though…something I never really cared for. Takes me out of the story a bit having to physically re-manipulate the way I’m holding the issue and re-orient visually.

Overall, definitely a “dated” issue–between Cyber himself, and the bone-claw Wolverine, and given how common it became for the claws to get broken and grow back (I believe Kitty Pryde at one point was shown to use old broken claws as weapons herself?). And as a piece of “history,” not a bad issue to snag for a one-off read; though I’m sure I appreciated this more having read it before, as well as surrounding issues before and after, and remembering this “era” rather fondly.

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