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Book Magneto Volume 1: Infamous by Cullen Bunn (2014-10-14)

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Magneto Volume 1: Infamous by Cullen Bunn (2014-10-14)

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  • Marvel (1887)
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Read online or download a free book: Magneto Volume 1: Infamous by Cullen Bunn (2014-10-14)

 

Review Text

  • By Sam Quixote on October 18, 2014

    Remember that scene from X-Men: First Class where a young Magneto hunts down some Nazis in post-war South America and executes them? That’s the basic concept of this series with an older (and less powerful) Magneto roaming across America as a wandering angel of death, avenging any and all wrongs against mutants by mankind.It’s actually a brilliant concept for the character because Magneto’s gone from being the quintessential X-Men villain to, recently, an almost heroic figure while retaining some of his darker tendencies. He’s kind of like the mutant Malcolm X, standing for a good cause but using questionable means to support it, so it’s in keeping that he would kill and still be the anti-hero of his story.What’s frustrating about this series is how vague the two stories in this book are when you think about them as a whole – but when reading them, you don’t actually notice that quality. So the first story arc is, I think, about some scientists doing Dr Mengele-esque experiments on human subjects to create human/sentinel hybrids, while the second arc is…. um… about The Marauders? I don’t know anything about these characters but they mean something to Magneto. They have a fight and then there’s that bizarre final page. So…But, like I say, when you’re reading the book, it’s quite easy to follow – Magneto is incognito (take away the costume and helmet and he’s just an ordinary bald dude) and being hunted by SHIELD. He’s popping up all over the country violently executing people who’ve hurt mutants. Simple! But when Cullen Bunn introduces a plot, things start to wobble a bit.Bunn gives Magneto a strong, resonant voice which is personable, even likeable, distinctive and sounds reasonable, in contrast to his very dark actions – the ways he kills is extremely violent. Though when the people he kills turn out to be nasty pieces of work, hurting mutant kids and whatnot, it’s hard not to feel righteous about Magneto’s murders. He’s not killing for the sake of it, he’s doing it for a purpose, and though you could say an eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind, you get a strong feeling that that’s how Magneto’s wants to play it and damn the consequences. Which is kinda cool – don’t get many of those Marvel types with their own series!Bunn throws in some flashback scenes to World War 2 and we see a young Magneto witnessing horrific violence at the hands of the Nazis, so you know where he’s coming from, but he’s also very aware that he’s become like the monsters who once tormented him. There are a lot of grey areas in this book and Bunn brilliantly walks the line between light and dark with Magneto.Thinking about the book as a whole though and it’s harder to figure out what the point was – it doesn’t help that there’s no real antagonist. Magneto’s just getting stuff done… whatever that stuff is. We know it’s probably in service of the mutant cause though. Probably.It almost doesn’t matter though when the main character is so well written and the moments when Magneto becomes Magneto are so exciting, like the opening chapter when he walks into the police station and uses various bits of metal to form his trademark costume, appearing in the midst of them, floating. So good!Artist Gabriel Hernandez Walta’s art is terrific, from that splash page I just described to drawing Magneto’s victims’ faces – he acutely captures their pain - and I liked how he represented Magneto’s powers like how he feels the metal in the police station just being around them with small panels displaying a gun or a paperclip. Jordie Bellaire’s colours give this book a magnificent look, using a limited palette of muted and darker tones, making his black uniform and helmet very stylish.I don’t think Bunn did a great job of making the reader aware of what was happening in the main – ie. the point of that particular arc – but I do think he got the voice down perfectly. I read through the first six issues in one sitting (a rare feat) because I was so hooked by Magneto’s narration rather than the plot (magnetic personality? I’ll get me coat…).It would be better too if he were really challenged which he hasn’t been so far – every threat he comes across is dealt with quite easily, almost effortlessly, on his part, so there’s little dramatic tension. It’d be better to see him on the ropes and being forced to use his wits more or facing a villain of his own.Still, it’s a very decent first volume to kick things off with. With Bunn’s Magneto and Al Ewing’s Loki, the Marvel villains are turning out to be as compelling in the spotlight as the heroes!3.5 stars

  • By S. Robert Katz on January 29, 2015

    This is a terrific series. Whether you're with him or against him, Magneto is a very interesting and compelling character, and this is a very good set-up for him. He's a complex character, because he's an extremist with genuinely understandable motivations. He's at his best when he's straddling the line between hero and villain, and that's exactly what's going on here. When he's written correctly, Magneto is one of the best characters in comics, and Cullen Bunn has found a very nice balance.Lately, Magneto has been spending time as a member of the X-Men, but this story takes him away from them to pursue his mission as the savior of mutantkind. It's not an original comparison (in fact, it was one of the reasons I decided to pick this up), but this is basically the comic book equivalent of the Magneto-as-Nazi-hunter scenes from X-Men: First Class. He's taken it upon himself to save the mutant race by any means necessary. There's also some nice tension as Magneto is forced to reconcile his self-image as the Master of Magnetism with the fact that his powers have mysteriously been reduced to a flicker of their former glory.The art is fantastic. Gabriel Hernandez-Walta has a pretty distinctive style with fine lines and beautiful ink washes. There's a very nice structure to his work, and it fits the tone perfectly. His work took a little getting used to when I first saw it (in a different series), but I'm a big fan. The other artist, Javi Fernandez, is also quite good. His art is much more traditional, but the two styles shouldn't clash enough for it to be distracting. It seems like it would be an unenviable task to find an artist to alternate duties with Hernandez-Walta, but they found a very good one.All-in-all, a pretty awesome package. Strong story, great art, a compelling protagonist. This is one of the best books coming out of Marvel right now. If you're even faintly interested in reading a Magneto comic, you should pick it up.

  • By Edward Hyde on February 8, 2015

    Beautiful art and great story.

  • By Kevin M. Derby on December 28, 2016

    Magneto is one of Marvel’s most interesting characters even as he crosses over between being a hero and a villain. “Magneto: Infamous” is an interesting story from writer Cullen Bunn and art teams led by Gabriel Hernandez Walta and Javier Fernandez. Bunn does a fine job of capturing Magento’s voice even as the story often relies far more on internal dialogue than action. There are some interesting angles here even as some of the story arcs prove anti-climatic. The art is a little vague but it works for the bleak tone of the story. Not a great collection of comics but fans of Magneto and the X-Men should enjoy this book.

  • By Shunk on July 20, 2014

    Picked up this comic along with some others thinking eh, its Magneto might as well try it. The comic ended up being one of the most interesting openers to a series I've ever read. The art alone was worth the 4 bucks. Magneto is still a dark charater who is portrayed in this issue better than any movie could ever do. Pick this up if you're looking to try a new series and enjoy X-Men.


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