I know what you are thinking–didn’t Wolverine come from comics? Yes. he did. But in honor of May’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Marvel Comics is carpet bombing us with new Wolverine series and collections. April is the big month for this campaign, where most Marvel Comics published will feature special “Wolverine Appreciation Variant” covers, but it starts this week, as three seminal Wolvie stories–ones that tie somewhat directly into the movie–are republished in trade paperback.
If you have ever heard comic fans saying they wished the Wolverine solo film would take place in Japan, it’s partly due to this work. This trade paperback collects Logan’s first solo miniseries. The classic work by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller (yes, of Sin City, 300, and, ugh, The Spirit fame) helped define the character of Wolverine, and introduced his ties to Japan into his mythos.
While it doesn’t tie into the film, per se, it is a great story done my two creators who were in their prime. If you want to know why Wolverine is one of the most popular comic book characters today, you’ll find some answers here.
Barry Windsor-Smith is a legendary name in comics, dating back to his work on Conan the Barbarian. In 1991, Marvel gave him the honor, if you will, to reveal the mystery behind one of the lingering questions about Wolverine–how he got his Adamantium claws. That story is what composes this trade paperback.
But Windsor-Smith did more than just that. He created a shadowy government agency, a remote secret laboratory, and a big tank of mysterious liquid for the newly metal boned Wolvie to pop out of to flesh out the tale. The story, called “Weapon X”, was serialized in Marvel Comics Presents #72-84 and inspired what little we’ve seen of the movie Wolvie’s origin in X2: X-Men United and will play a bigger role in the upcoming film.
- Image courtesy of Midtown Comics.com
It took Marvel another ten years to complete the origin of Wolverine. They did it in a special six-issue miniseries written by Paul Jenkins and art by Andy Kubert called Wolverine:Origin.
The story, collected in this volume, told the tale of a young James Howlett, a foppish boy in 19th Century Canada. From these humble beginnings grew the rough and tumble hero known as Wolverine.
Eagle-eyed fans who watched the trailer closely might have caught glimpse of a young boy in a white shirt with bone white claw popping out of his fists. That same scene is taken appears in this series, which leads me to believe that the new movie will take some parts from this collection.
Each trade paperback retails for $16.99 and can be found in better bookstores and comic shops everywhere. If you are non-comic literate and would like to learn more about the character Hugh Jackman plays in this May’s flick, these three trades will teach you well.