I've read "X-Men Deadly Genesis" and Ed Brubaker's run on "Uncanny." I read every issue of "X-Men: Emperor Vulcan," and I'm interested in the upcoming "War of Kings" crossover space-event.
But none of that makes "X-Men: Kingbreaker" #2 a better comic. It's pretty terrible, through and through.
The problems here are too numerous to mention in a brief review, but let me highlight two of the things that drag this series into the comic book quagmire of badness: Chris Yost's stiff, mannered writing and Dustin Weaver's equally stiff, characterless artwork.
Yost fills the book with inane dialogue like "I am not here to surrender." "You should not have come here, Empress! You know what I must now do!" And it's endless. These characters prattle on and on about their desperate situations without the story ever rising to meet them. They are blank, space-hero mannequins given lines to recite, and none of it amounts to anything.
The characters tell us this stuff is important, but it doesn't feel important. There's no beating hearts beneath their superficial shells. The characters -- good guys and bad guys alike -- serve story purposes, I suppose, but I've read all the lead-ins, I know what's going on, and I really could not care less about anything they talk about in this issue.
Havok busts out of his confinement and kicks a few dudes. Rachel Summers zooms through space. Vulcan smolders with rage.
And none of it seems to matter. Not one bit. It's just a collection of pointless, empty scene after pointless, empty scene.
It doesn't help that Dustin Weaver's art ranges from semi-professional Jim Lee homage to amateurish Andrew Wildmanesque figure drawing. In his best panels, Weaver draws characters that look like they've been cut out of other comics from a best-forgotten era, and in his worst panels his figures look like awkwardly posed action figures with over-rendered musculature.
The only saving grace of the entire comic -- the only thing that gives it even a single star of merit -- is the appearance of the Starjammers at the end. Maybe they'll liven things up next issue.
But with Yost and Weaver on the job, the future looks as bleak as the present.