“Dark Wolverine” #82 ended with Daken running Norman Osborn through with his claws during the Siege of Asgard. It was a shocking way to end the issue since no one would expect Osborn to get killed A) by Daken and B) in the pages of “Dark Wolverine.” Well, he didn’t, but the manner in which he wasn’t makes sense and sets up a pretty interesting story for Daken in his “Siege” tie-in issues, picking up on a plot point in Michael Avon Oeming’s contribution to “Thor” wherein he had the character break the cycle of Ragnarok by severing Asgard’s ties with the Three Fates.
Tying this story to that allows for the flights of fancy like the possibility of Daken killing Osborn in a logical manner, playing with the events of “Siege” to show off parts of Daken’s psyche. The Fates see Daken as a violent monster that they can manipulate and direct to their goal of bringing about Ragnarok and recreating the cycle that Thor ended in Oeming’s story. However, Daken is not so easily controlled and his reaction to their plans is not what they expected.
While last issue tied into the first issue of “Siege,” this one also gives greater insight into Daken’s confrontation with Thor from “Siege” #2, managing to find that balance between expanding upon the main book in this event and telling its own story. “Dark Wolverine” #83 sets itself apart from “Siege” enough that you don’t need to be following the event to understand what’s going on in this issue.
Giuseppe Camuncoli continues to deliver stunning art on this book, creating striking, bold images that never hold back the violent cruelty of Daken. While the writing likes to tell us how dangerous he is, Camuncoli shows us. The viciousness in his eyes as he crouches on Osborn’s dying body or the unease on his face when he snaps out of the vision the Fates showed him provide tremendous insight into the character. Camuncoli has displayed an ability to draw characters with a hint of crazy in their eyes for years, but his work on Daken is some of the best use of that talent since it’s often tempered with him recoiling from that side of himself, not entirely sure he wants to give in those impulses, a reluctance that Camuncoli always gets across.
In this issue, he uses an interesting and jarring technique of switching from one perspective to the exact opposite when moving from panel to panel. Doing that could backfire because it’s almost too jarring and self-reflective, but it’s always coupled with an outburst of violence, allowing the shift in perspective to underscore the violence in the art. He also uses that technique judiciously, limiting himself to once or twice in this issue for maximum impact.
By building on a lingering idea from a previous Thor story, the “Siege” tie-in arc of “Dark Wolverine” looks like it will work tangentially to the event, existing mostly on its own, expanding on Daken’s appearances in “Siege,” but also telling its own story. As far as tie-ins go, it’s a smart approach that works quite well, especially with Giuseppe Camuncoli on art.