So, about one month ago, I had the occasion to take a break and sit down with a comic book and a couple of hours to myself. If you don’t have children or three jobs, you might think “and?” But this was a very rare occurrence for me and I decided that I needed to take full advantage of my miraculous situation. It started with my post-work thought, “I will go see my friends at Lone Star Comics and Games Plano and purchase a single issue to be read over a meal that costs roughly $10.” I know, high roller.
This was the week of July 31st and there were many comics titles out that I was interested in. I first looked around the copious racks of comics at Lone Star for anything that I had missed. Nothing really jumped out at me. I’m way behind on many of my favorite titles, but nothing had the special flavor of what I was going for on this day. Then, I thought I would look at the new and recent. Our What To Watch For On Wednesday post was my guide, but as I perused, nothing really lit my fire. I was in a weird place as I went all of the way down our list of recommendations for that week when I saw something surprising. Our very last comic book that we recommended was recommended for being potentially terrible. I couldn’t, could I?
One thing that you may not know about me is that I have rarely indulged in watching B-movies or things categorically referred to as “campy.” I don’t like cheesy horror movies or even understand the Mystery Science Theater 3000-style roasting of the unexceptional. The closest I get is the podcast, “How Did This Get Made,” but even that is more for the talent of the comedians than the cheesy nature of the movies that I don’t watch. I’ve come to expect some modicum of excellence in entertainment as it is 2013.
Wolverine In The Flesh achieves excellence only in how excellently bad it is. From start to finish, this comic book is an embarrassment to seasoned readers and a terribly skewed view of the reality of the Marvel universe to the uneducated. The fact that this comic book was printed and sold gives me pause. I looked up the word, “contrived” in the thesaurus and it is the perfect word to describe this comic book. The words that the thesaurus suggests as synonyms are: “fake, forced, artificial, overdone, strained, phony…” you get the idea. The characterizations of every character are way off and they traipse through the woefully contrived story that Chris Cosentino pens. Chris Cosentino. You don’t know him?
“Chris Cosentio is an American celebrity chef and reality television personality known as the winner of Top Chef Masters, a competitor on The Next Iron Chef and for his appearances on Iron Chef America.” That’s what Google says. I know that Chris Cosentino is a successful restauranteur. I know that Chris Cosentino is a Top Chef Master. I know this because I watch the dadgum shows. What I didn’t know is that he is apparently such a badass that he puts Wolverine to shame.
Wolverine In The Flesh is a story about a crime that is so hard for Wolverine (yes, that Wolverine) to handle, he has to call in help from Chris Cosentino. This crime is a serial murderer who cuts people with butcher’s knives. Wolverine needs help to track and bring a guy to justice who kills people with knives. All throughout this one-shot, we are treated to constant reminders of how inept Wolverine is at doing anything. It’s almost like immortal, secret agent, captain of the X-Men, infinitely trained in every other comic, Wolverine is incredibly lucky to have Chris Cosentino around. He even lets Chris drive the Prius for God’s sakes! First off, he willfully gets in a Prius…then he lets Chris drive? Ridiculous. This comic book is that offensive. Time after time, Wolverine is doing something and Chris Cosentino shows him the right way to do it or Chris Cosentino saves him…Chris saves Wolverine. You have to be bleeping kidding me. It’s almost like this comic was written by…
Chris Cosentino makes his virgin appearance writing for comics with Wolverine In The Flesh. Chris sticks to what he knows about when writing this book. That’s why there are so many uncomfortable moments where Chris Cosentino talks about eating locally, rages against vegetarianism, and expounds upon how great he is. This is single-handedly the most egotistical thing that I have ever read. To write your own comic book with yourself as a character is one thing. To take the established king of the Marvel jungle and turn him into a house cat for your own self-gratification is offensive. This comic book is offensive. Wolverine In The Flesh is offensive to me as a comic book reader as it speaks down to me. Wolverine In The Flesh is offensive to me as a consumer because I wasted my $3.99 on it. Wolverine In The Flesh is offensive to whatever moderate sense of journalism that I possess because I cannot believe that it made it out of Marvel’s door. But joke’s on them because I got this review out of it…and a few laughs.
~ Scott Deaux ~