Excalibur #3 Review

Writer: Tini Howard
Art: Art: Marcus To, Erick Arciniega, VC’s Cory Petit, Tom Muller, Mahmud Asrar, and Matthew Wilson
Release Date: December 4th, 2019
Price: $3.99

As Betsy, Gambit, and Jubilee have come face to face with a dragon, I have to wonder if we’ll be introduced to a mutant named Pete this issue? Let’s head to Camelot and Krakoa and find out!

After some serious concerns and complaints about the first two issues of this series, I was pretty skeptical about issue three. I did, however, come in with an open mind. I was quickly surprised by a new character, and between the writing and art, I knew his name and his mutant powers.

So, immediately I was happy because I wasn’t confused. I don’t need to be spoon-fed at all, but this series has been confusing to literally everyone I’ve talked to about it. Why, and who is calling out to Rictor hasn’t been revealed yet but will be.

With the help of one of the several black and white “data dump” pages we find that Rictor is not able to control his powers and is wondering how Krakoa might help or hurt his chances of controlling them. While six to eight pages an issue of credits, rosters, data dumps is a bit much for my liking, it does work well and will prove useful again later in the issue.

We then switch scenes to Camelot where Morgan Le Fay is questioning Marianna Stern about why she doesn’t have Apocalypse’s head yet. While they’re talking we can see the dragon approaching. The dragon could easily be missed in this, the “wordiest” part of the issue. Morgan mentions Black Air later and while a twinge of confusion crept in, I have faith in Tini Howard that it would be explained and I wouldn’t have to search Wikipedia! The dragon then makes itself known.

Then we get to my favorite part of the book in which we find that while in Otherworld Shogo being a baby/child can take the form of basically whatever his imagination warrants. How cool is that?? This is what drew me to this series. How and to what extent magic would be used! This scene alone sold me on this series. So while I was a bit down on Tini last issue, she deserves

We also get some humor thrown in about diapers that was actually funny. While this is going on Gambit is rightfully worried about Rogue and Tini answers some more of my questions as to who is or isn’t a mutant and would be protected. As a new reader, this was very helpful.

Gambit even makes a role-playing “level up” joke that works ok!

An attack on the castle is made trying to free Brian. Betsy looks awesome with her helmet on! As they come face to face with Brian, our heroes are a bit shocked, you’ll see why, and they end up leaving without him.

We then get my questions answered about Black Air in an info dump. Some very very interesting names are listed on this page.

Back at the lighthouse, Apocalypse is having trouble with stone crystals and the reason Rictor is needed becomes clear. Apocalypse goes to retrieve Rictor while also reassuring him about his powers and also his fears.

We get a great cliffhanger dealing with a Black Air agent and what his mission is. To be continued…..

So, this is BY FAR my favorite issue so far. It’s not perfect by any means. My only real issue is a panel where Rictor seems to be missing half his right arm. He’s coming through the portal but it REALLY looks like an error. It was very confusing to me as I read it.

Final Thoughts:

My faith has been restored in Tini Howard and in magic! This is my favorite issue so far. The story is told in a way that isn’t nearly as confusing to the reader, even while adding more characters to the mix.

7.5/10

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