Friday, May 23, 2014

Beer, A Bar, and Bygones


After Wolverine sliced into the face of Ben Grimm, the Thing, it would take awhile before Logan would make an attempt to mend fences with Ben--"unfinished business," as he'd call it. And that business takes place at the "Last Gasp Saloon," an abandoned bar where probably a good deal of unfinished business got settled. But this story has another word for what this meeting may come to:



Welcome to the final day of Bar Fight Week!

(Let's hope Wolverine thought to bring a LOT of beer.)



When Ben arrives, things don't look hopeful for this little beer summit of Wolverine's:



It's not like Wolverine to ease into conversation like this or to be so placating, regardless of what he's done or the powerhouse he faces. Writer Tom DeFalco doesn't seem to have a comfortable feel for the character, his dialog a little at odds with artist Paul Ryan's depiction of Logan: a good balance between unapologetic and repentant. I would much rather see this meeting as one between equals, in temperament if not sheer power--and while I see that in Ryan's work, DeFalco has Logan interacting with Ben on a buddy level that doesn't exist yet.



Though it looks like Logan finally reaches his limit, and this meeting heads south sharply:



It definitely looks like these two are headed for a rumble; and this poor saloon, which has seen better days, may well be on the verge of its own "last gasp." But, thanks to Ant-Man, who's tagged along with Ben unseen, Wolverine and the Thing may well end up in battle, though not with each other. Because from his cell at the super-villain prison known as the Vault, the mad Thinker has embarked on a campaign to take down the members of the Fantastic Four one by one--and he begins with the Thing, sending a team of operatives to the saloon to deal with him. Thanks to his spies, the Thinker was also aware that Wolverine would have to be factored into the mission--but Ant-Man's timely warning has at least given both men a heads-up:




Ant-Man has alerted these two to the threat just in time, and the battle erupts. Unfortunately for the Thinker's crew, the Thing was already nursing one heck of a mad-on, which he now channels in their direction. Though that doesn't mean he's forgotten his beef with Wolverine:





With his crew's swift defeat, the Thinker activates his contingency plan: an android which embodies the abilities of the entire Fantastic Four. Understandably, hostilities escalate to the point of the fight busting outside--and Ben and Logan find themselves fighting in an alliance which they otherwise wouldn't have chosen:





Yet, even with their hands full with this kind of threat, Wolverine is able to get Ben to vent on their own unresolved disagreement:






Finally, Ant-Man is able to take a hand in cutting this threat down to size--and who better to do that?



With the Thinker's threat ended, Ant-Man finds his role changed to moderator in order to keep the Thing and Wolverine from resuming their more personal battle. So it is that later, thanks to the postal service, the Thinker gets the news about what happened afterward along with the rest of us, courtesy of a photo which says it all:



Gee, it sounds like the Thinker is one of my readers! I'm honored! And a little creeped out.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I would love to see Ben Grimm (one of my favorite comic book characters) really pound Wolverine (one of my least favorite characters).
I'm old school, I guess.
There were a couple issues of The Punisher I liked where Frank Castle dealt with Logan by simply blowing away half of his anatomy.(Including sensitive areas.)
Healing factor or no, that's gotta smart.

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