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Mystique #4

Posted: Sunday, July 27, 2003
By: Cody Dolan



“Drop Dead Gorgeous Chapter 4”

Writer: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist: Jorge Lucas

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Plot:
Mystique is in Cuba to infiltrate a military installation housing older model Sentinels. It’s not as easy as she thought it’d be, but it still isn’t that tough for the shape-shifter. Once inside the base, our anti-heroine is faced with a dilemma that once again shouldn’t be too hard for her to get out of.

Comments:
I’m not a regular reader of the X-Men family of books, so the way Mystique is written in this series could be way out of character. Having admitted to that, I have to say that I impressed with the star of the book and genuinely look forward to this book every month. She an unapologetic bad girl (and yes, I can hear Bill “Bad Girls for Fanboys” Jemas’s laughter as I write this) and I find that refreshing. She’s not a conflicted character in the slightest, and that kind of unrepentant female is rare in comics. Her staunch defense of what others deem as her terrorist past makes for an interesting character study as well as some crisp dialogue. Besides, I’m a sucker for good shape-shifter stories, especially when writers come up with unique applications of that power.

I originally thought the premise to the book was a great idea, and the story so far has borne that out. I’m still digging the covert aspects of Xavier’s dream as well as the lengths to which Mystique will go to carry out her mission. My only problem with this issue is that it completely lacks tension. We’ve seen Mystique get out of various “certain death” jams so far, and there’s nothing to suggest she can’t escape this one. The cliffhanger can easily be resolved, so I don’t feel like I absolutely can’t wait for the next issue.

Jorge Lucas is a name that is new to me, and this book makes me wonder why I haven’t seen him before. His works reminds me of Whilce Portacio’s back when everyone agreed that he was good, but I do have a quibble or two. His faces aren’t very consistent, as evidenced by Mystique’s constantly moving hairline, and his Sentinel designs are a little strange. Sure, they look great, but I was under the impression that these were supposed to be older versions of the giant robots and these have a futuristic look to them.

Final Word:
Vaughan’s take on Mystique is a good one, and any fan of the X-genre should give this book a look. This is by far the weakest chapter of series so far, but it was still entertaining enough to make me want to pick up the next issue.



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