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Dream-team creators Joss Whedon (TV's Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and John Cassaday (Planetary, Captain America) present the explosive flagship X-Men series - marking a return to classic greatness and the beginning of a brand-new era for the X-Men! Cyclops and Emma Frost re-form the X-Men with the express purpose of "astonishing" the world. But when breaking news regarding t Dream-team creators Joss Whedon (TV's Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and John Cassaday (Planetary, Captain America) present the explosive flagship X-Men series - marking a return to classic greatness and the beginning of a brand-new era for the X-Men! Cyclops and Emma Frost re-form the X-Men with the express purpose of "astonishing" the world. But when breaking news regarding the mutant gene unexpectedly hits the airwaves, will it derail their new plans before they even get started? Collecting: Astonishing X-Men 1-6


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Dream-team creators Joss Whedon (TV's Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and John Cassaday (Planetary, Captain America) present the explosive flagship X-Men series - marking a return to classic greatness and the beginning of a brand-new era for the X-Men! Cyclops and Emma Frost re-form the X-Men with the express purpose of "astonishing" the world. But when breaking news regarding t Dream-team creators Joss Whedon (TV's Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and John Cassaday (Planetary, Captain America) present the explosive flagship X-Men series - marking a return to classic greatness and the beginning of a brand-new era for the X-Men! Cyclops and Emma Frost re-form the X-Men with the express purpose of "astonishing" the world. But when breaking news regarding the mutant gene unexpectedly hits the airwaves, will it derail their new plans before they even get started? Collecting: Astonishing X-Men 1-6

30 review for Astonishing X-Men, Volume 1: Gifted

  1. 5 out of 5

    Kemper

    Grant Morrison did an ambitious run on New X-Men, but that story had to be walked back in the interests of continuing it in on-going mainstream superhero comics. Marvel made a wise choice when they tapped Joss Whedon, lord of the TV geeks back then, to help get the X-Men out of the black leather and back into spandex. (It’s reasonable to assume that his work here was a big reason that he’d later get the gig writing and directing the Avengers movies.) Kitty Pryde returns to the school as Cyclops i Grant Morrison did an ambitious run on New X-Men, but that story had to be walked back in the interests of continuing it in on-going mainstream superhero comics. Marvel made a wise choice when they tapped Joss Whedon, lord of the TV geeks back then, to help get the X-Men out of the black leather and back into spandex. (It’s reasonable to assume that his work here was a big reason that he’d later get the gig writing and directing the Avengers movies.) Kitty Pryde returns to the school as Cyclops is forming a new team with the goal to promote the mutant cause by putting a flashy group out in public that would be more like the better known superheroes than a bunch of underground militant activists. Hence, the return of the tights. No sooner does the line-up get set than they get word that a scientists has created a so-called cure to the mutant gene that causes a variety of ethical debates as well as fear of what that could do in the wrong hands. This happens just as a new alien villain called Ord starts causing trouble. Oh, and a character comes back from the grave because nobody stays dead in comic books. I admit that even though I’m a huge fan of Whedon that I had a few reservations about this when I first read it about ten years ago. I grumbled about the return to a more baseline version after Morrison’s mind-bending run seemed to offer new and bold directions, and I really disliked yet another instance of a dead X-Man pulling a Lazarus. However, my inner comic fanboy doesn’t rage quite as hard against that particular machine these days. I’ve come to accept that continuity can provide a useful foundation, but that it too often becomes a crushing weight that overwhelms stories so I tend to think of each particular era as a self-contained bubble of a story. Once I accepted that I was a much happier comic book fan overall. So in my head canon Morrison’s run is one version of the X-Men, Whedon’s is another, and Whedon’s run is pretty great. The look and tone of the X-Men movies had infiltrated the comics to some degree, but now a decade’s worth of superhero films has shown us that you can make them colorful and fun after all. (At least they can be if they’re not directed by Zach Snyder.) So putting a team back in bright costumes and having them fight a genocidal alien makes me think that Whedon was a bit ahead of the curve on this idea of letting comic books be comic books. At the same time the storyline of the mutant cure puts the social issues of bigotry and tolerance that the X-titles represent front and center, too. There’s also great dramatic tension among this team with Wolverine pissed off at Cyclops for taking up with Emma Frost so soon after Jean Grey’s latest death. Kitty doesn’t trust Emma because she doesn’t buy the reformed villain act. Emma thinks everyone but her is a naïve idiot. Beast is conflicted about the idea of a cure and a chance to be fully human again which infuriates Wolverine who believes that no X-Man should reject their status as mutant. All of this is dealt with in both physical and verbal fights, and of course the Whedon dialogue laces all of this with plenty of humor. Overall, this a really solid comic with a serious storyline that doesn’t forget the fun factor.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Will M.

    My love for the X-Men is not something I've hidden in the past. I've mentioned this recently, so I guess I don't really need to remind the people who read my review of another X-Men series. This first volume was great. It vaguely depicts a great story arc and hints for great plot twists to come in the next volumes. The plot was different than the usual X-Men plot I got used to. I only know X-Men from the movies and I can vaguely remember some random single issues when I was younger, so I had no My love for the X-Men is not something I've hidden in the past. I've mentioned this recently, so I guess I don't really need to remind the people who read my review of another X-Men series. This first volume was great. It vaguely depicts a great story arc and hints for great plot twists to come in the next volumes. The plot was different than the usual X-Men plot I got used to. I only know X-Men from the movies and I can vaguely remember some random single issues when I was younger, so I had no idea what writers were experimenting on over the past years. Whedon had something new to offer, but it wasn't as astonishing as I would've wanted. This honestly had a really similar plot to the third X-Men movie, X-Men: The Last Stand. He changed a whole lot, but the essence was still there. The main idea was basically the same, but I'm not complaining to be honest. I just wanted to point out how similar things were, but I'm not mad because i liked X-Men: The Last Stand. I know a lot of people disliked it because the characters became darker and not jolly, but it's still the X-Men for me. The story was great, but just like the movie, this volume was also lacking. While it was great to know that there's a cure, I just seem to feel that the author has more to offer after this. I'm not completely satisfied. The artwork was way better than I expected. I liked how they were portrayed, unlike the most recent one I read. I know that this is just a personal preference but I always judge harshly on the artwork. Bad artwork always ruins the whole experience, so thankfully this didn't disappoint. Kudos for making Wolverine look at least cool, and even Scott Summers. Most of the time both of them look like thrash, so it's a great thing to finally pay some respect and portray them well. Can I just ask though, if it's too spoilery then please tell me and don't answer, but where the fuck is Storm? 4.5.5 stars. Rounded down, just like any other Graphic Novel. I always round down when it comes to GN, so I guess you could also say that I judge these harsher than novels. A great read though, so don't hesitate to try if you're looking for a great X-Men read.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Josu Grilli

    Un primer tomo que consigue presentar unas tramas interesantes sobre todo hacia la segunda mitad, con la introducción de Pete. En líneas generales me ha entretenido pero he sentido mucha falta de información que no se completaba, como que no conseguía enterarme de todo lo que pasaba y no paraban de referencias situaciones pasadas. Supongo que es normal en el mundo Marvel, pero al ser el inicio de una saga pensaba que se iba a poder disfrutar aun con esa falta de información. El dibujo es increíb Un primer tomo que consigue presentar unas tramas interesantes sobre todo hacia la segunda mitad, con la introducción de Pete. En líneas generales me ha entretenido pero he sentido mucha falta de información que no se completaba, como que no conseguía enterarme de todo lo que pasaba y no paraban de referencias situaciones pasadas. Supongo que es normal en el mundo Marvel, pero al ser el inicio de una saga pensaba que se iba a poder disfrutar aun con esa falta de información. El dibujo es increíble pero creo que en cuanto a trama, es introductoria.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Dirk Grobbelaar

    This was a bit better. I’ve doggedly been trying to get aboard the X-Men bandwagon. The “Ultimate” version was too contrived for my taste, and many readers recommended Josh Whedon’s Astonishing X-Men run. I will admit that this is probably required reading for X-Men fans; it is quite good, but perhaps not the best place for the uninitiated to start. I was a bit out of my depth here. For example, I never read the arc where Colossus “died”. Professor Xavier is also missing from this outing, leavin This was a bit better. I’ve doggedly been trying to get aboard the X-Men bandwagon. The “Ultimate” version was too contrived for my taste, and many readers recommended Josh Whedon’s Astonishing X-Men run. I will admit that this is probably required reading for X-Men fans; it is quite good, but perhaps not the best place for the uninitiated to start. I was a bit out of my depth here. For example, I never read the arc where Colossus “died”. Professor Xavier is also missing from this outing, leaving Cyclops and Emma Frost (sort of) in charge. Neither of the two are characters I particularly care for, so… I quite liked Ord, the Extra Terrestrial villain. I’m hoping that, should I continue reading this series, that we’ll be seeing more of him. I would like some more insight into his hatred of mutants. Now, although Gifted is rather good, there are one or two scenes that venture dangerously close to being schmaltzy. If you do already like the X-Men, though, and know enough of the back story, this series is well worth your time. I read X-Men comics as a kid, and I enjoyed them, but I’m struggling to recapture that vibe. I’ll still check out Grant Morrison’s version, but I think what I’m really after is the stuff from the late 80s / early 90s, where Beast at least looked dangerous and not like a plush toy. I need a nudge in the right direction though, as far as the collected editions are concerned, since there are so many of them. ….or, alternatively, I should just stick to reading Wolverine.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Terence

    The X-Men are re-forming and opening Xavier's School again. Some familiar faces return like Kitty Pryde. Meanwhile a cure for the mutant condition has been found. Gifted is the inspiration for the worst X-Men movie X-Men 3 The Last Stand. Thankfully Cyclops and Professor X aren't dissolved by a Phoenix powered Jean Grey. Jean is dead and Scott has moved on with Ms. Lingerie Emma Frost. Frost is also helping to lead the school which isn't going over well with everyone. The author Joss Whedon has a h The X-Men are re-forming and opening Xavier's School again. Some familiar faces return like Kitty Pryde. Meanwhile a cure for the mutant condition has been found. Gifted is the inspiration for the worst X-Men movie X-Men 3 The Last Stand. Thankfully Cyclops and Professor X aren't dissolved by a Phoenix powered Jean Grey. Jean is dead and Scott has moved on with Ms. Lingerie Emma Frost. Frost is also helping to lead the school which isn't going over well with everyone. The author Joss Whedon has a habit for absurdly slow starts to his work. I believe wholeheartedly that's why Firefly was canceled in its first season and why if any other station than ABC owned Marvel's Agents of SHIELD, it would have been cancelled in it's first season. Whedon likes to set major plans that can't be bothered with keeping the characters and story interesting until he gets there. It's easy to see major events are being set, but the current story telling isn't all that compelling for me. Gifted was an OK story, but I'm in no rush to continue the series at this point.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Calista

    After the monotonous Marvel comics I have read recently, this is a breath of fresh air. This has characters and it doesn't feel like it's simply about the action. I was engaged and it was fun. Why can't this be more of what the comics are doing. Joss is amazing and he really does understand emotions and characters. That's what he does. I love the art. I thought the plot was fun without being too ridiculous. I mean there is an alien in it and it's only one and it does overwhelm the story. There is After the monotonous Marvel comics I have read recently, this is a breath of fresh air. This has characters and it doesn't feel like it's simply about the action. I was engaged and it was fun. Why can't this be more of what the comics are doing. Joss is amazing and he really does understand emotions and characters. That's what he does. I love the art. I thought the plot was fun without being too ridiculous. I mean there is an alien in it and it's only one and it does overwhelm the story. There is a lot of back story I have obviously missed before this started. Oh well. I was entertained with a quick read.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Brad

    My introduction to the X-Men, many years ago, was the Dark Phoenix Saga (even though it was already a couple of years old when I found it). Up until then I'd been consuming Namor and the staples: Batman, Superman, Captain America, Spiderman. My starting place was not a bad place to start; it was, in fact, a pretty fine place to start. Maybe too fine. Starting with one of the finest chapters of the X-Men might be why I've mostly been a passing fan of Marvel's mutants over the years. Nothing could My introduction to the X-Men, many years ago, was the Dark Phoenix Saga (even though it was already a couple of years old when I found it). Up until then I'd been consuming Namor and the staples: Batman, Superman, Captain America, Spiderman. My starting place was not a bad place to start; it was, in fact, a pretty fine place to start. Maybe too fine. Starting with one of the finest chapters of the X-Men might be why I've mostly been a passing fan of Marvel's mutants over the years. Nothing could quite live up to the excellence of the Chris Claremont & John Byrne partnership. I'd pop into the X-Men for a visit if I heard an arc was worth reading or if a crossover made a visit essential, or even buy a mini-series with an X-Man I liked, but I was never an avid reader. I had no idea until recently that my introduction to the X-Men was as significant to my personal mythology as it was and is, but somewhere in my squishy brain bits that first moment with the X-Men planted some seeds that germinated into my contribution to our youngest daughter's name. When I chose the name nine years ago (a name which was supposed to be my son Milos' when he and his twin sister Bronte were born, but he was a boy, "Damn it!" and he screwed up my plans), everyone wondered why I would chose a name like the one I chose, especially when I instantly replaced it with a nickname. I couldn't provide an answer beyond, "I dunno. I've always just loved those names." The name and the nickname felt right. It took Joss Whedon's* Astonishing X-Men Vol. 1 Gifted to answer that question and reveal the roots of the brain shrub that had been growing since I was a kid, but the answer was there in the pages of his epic X-Collaboration with John Cassaday. As soon as I started reading I was greeted by an old, old friend -- Shadowcat. She's late for her return to Professor Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters, and she finds an empty school upon her arrival, so she starts walking through walls and sinking through floors trying to figure out where everyone's gone (she can phase through anything, in case you didn't know). And I am thrilled. I instantly remember how much I've loved Shadowcat through the years, and I hope that she'll bump into Wolverine soon (in the movies, Rogue's relationship with Wolvie is based on the comic book relationship between him and Shadowcat). Instead, she stumbles into a school assembly and shrugs off the embarrassment at her lateness when the new Headmistress, Emma Frost (former White Queen of the Hellfire Club), mocks her. She gives Emma a sassy tongue lashing and reminds the White Queen that the first time they met Emma tried to kill her, derailing her search for the X-Men and unleashing a Dark Phoenix. I snort at Shadowcat's telling blow, then remember that Dark Phoenix was indeed the first appearance of Kitty Pryde. And I start to wonder without any serious thought whether "Kitty" has anything to do with my Kitty Kat's nickname; something is shaking those roots, but I ignore it and keep reading until it comes clear. You see ... another old favourite appears right near the end(view spoiler)[ Colossus, resurrected from the dead by alien baddy, Ord (hide spoiler)] , and he calls Kitty by the name only he calls her -- "Katya" -- and I know the source of my contribution to Scoutie's name: Katya Gwendolyn Scout. I should have known all along, but somehow the source slipped away from me only to be revealed in the best X-Man comic since the Dark Phoenix Saga. I think they're fabulous. Both the comic and the revelation it catalyzed. And I love comics. And Joss Whedon. And most of all I love my Scoutie Kat. *For all you oldsters out there: did you know that Joss Whedon's Dad, Tom Whedon, was the head writer for The Electric Company? How fucking cool is that?

  8. 5 out of 5

    Mike

    Fantastic premise - an x-gene cure? That'll keep 'em on their toes for a while. Loving the super-bitch Emma Frost that Whedon cooked up - he really does have a way with female characters doesn't he? The writing and art are a nice, fresh yet familiar take on our favourite misfits. I am so glad that Whedon branched out beyond his Buffyverse to grant us this twist on our tired old mutant storylines. This kicks off a spectacular run of X-Men comics.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Ronyell

    Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog 6 stars! Brief History: Alright, I have actually first heard of the “X-Men” series when I was little and it was through a 90s cartoon series entitled “X-Men: The Animated Series.” From that day on, I was so hooked onto the “X-Men” franchise that I practically watched every incarnation of “X-Men” throughout my life which included the animated series “X-Men: Evolution” and I even watched all three “X-Men” movies. Now the truth of the matter is that even t Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog 6 stars! Brief History: Alright, I have actually first heard of the “X-Men” series when I was little and it was through a 90s cartoon series entitled “X-Men: The Animated Series.” From that day on, I was so hooked onto the “X-Men” franchise that I practically watched every incarnation of “X-Men” throughout my life which included the animated series “X-Men: Evolution” and I even watched all three “X-Men” movies. Now the truth of the matter is that even though I have heard of the “X-Men” franchise ever since I was a child, I never read the comics at all, until now. I never read the comics before because there was just too many universes involving everyone's favorite superhero mutants and I am one of those people who cannot keep up with too many different versions of certain characters' lives because I will get confused easily. Well, I stumbled upon this unique comic book from the “X-Men” series entitled “Astonishing X-Men: Gifted” and when I found out that Joss Whedon (creator of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”) was going to write an “X-Men” comic, I was shocked and excited at the same time! Joss Whedon is surely an accomplished writer and I have watched “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” before and I really enjoyed that show! And now, without further ado, I will now discuss about what this book is all about and my opinions on this comic. What is the story? Cyclops and Emma Frost, who are now in charge of the institute, started reforming the X-Men once again to prove to the world that even though they are mutants, they are the heroes and they want to “astonish” the world with their heroic deeds. However, when a mutant cure reaches all over the world and many mutants line up to get the cure, will the X-Men's efforts to prove to the world that they are the good guys fall in vain? And to add to that, the X-Men will soon reunite with a fellow mutant who was presumed dead. Who is that mutant? Find out once you pick up “Astonishing X-Men: Gifted!” What I loved about this comic: Joss Whedon's writing: Joss Whedon's writing was so brilliant in this comic! He really knows how to bring excitement and suspense to the storyline regarding the X-Men trying to figure out the secrets of this “mutant cure” and who is behind all of this commotion. I also loved the way that Joss Whedon is able to shock the audience with various scenes that came so unexpected in the story, such as the scene where we find out about the mutant who was presumed dead and when I found out about that situation, I was totally shocked beyond all reason and yet I was extremely happy to see how the shock of this scene was written and shown. I also loved the way that Joss Whedon incorporated humor into the story at the right places, like Wolverine's obsession with beer and that one popular line in the book where Wolverine is cursing like crazy and you just see a bunch of symbols indicating the strong language. John Cassaday's illustrations: John Cassaday's illustrations were simply gorgeous and fitted this story perfectly. I loved how all the X-Men characters look so real and I especially loved seeing their expressions that ranged from anger to shock as it was amusing to look at. I also loved the lighting of certain scenes such as the X-Men going to the Benetech lab and everything inside the lab is shaded in green which fitted the brooding mood of the lab. The characters: I have never seen such amazing characters from the “X-Men” universe in my entire life! All the characters were interesting without being boring at all and I loved seeing the actual conflicts they have with each other, especially between Emma Frost and Kitty Pryde as they clearly have contempt for each other due to Emma's horrible past. Even though I will always be a Cyclops/Jean Grey fan, I thought that the relationship between Emma and Scott was pretty interesting and they seem to share some kind of bond that I never would have seen in any other comic. I also loved the fact that Kitty Pryde seems to be the star of this issue since the media rarely focuses on her character and what was so interesting about her character was that she resembled Buffy from “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” in being the heroic heroine who would do anything to save her friends from disaster. What made me feel uncomfortable about this book: I do not really have much of a problem with this issue since I thought it was perfect, but for those of you who do not like gore and language, this volume contains plenty of gore and language, so I would probably not read this issue if language and violence is a bother to some people. Final Thoughts: Overall, I really enjoyed reading “Astonishing X-Men: Gifted” and I am looking forward to reading up on the next issue “Dangerous” from this fantastic series! If anyone has ever read the “X-Men” series before and you want to recommend me some titles, please recommend me some “X-Men” titles that were really great to read!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Fables&Wren

    WrensReads Review: So, I think I mistook this volume. I thought I was reading the first ever issue of X-Men, when really this is just another whole set of X-Men. I knew that there were multiple sets and stories and characters and such, because you hear people talking about how "in one alternate universe this happened which is different from this other universe" and such and so forth. BUT, it wasn't that confusing. Because I knew the characters and I knew about the girl who is already dead in the b WrensReads Review: So, I think I mistook this volume. I thought I was reading the first ever issue of X-Men, when really this is just another whole set of X-Men. I knew that there were multiple sets and stories and characters and such, because you hear people talking about how "in one alternate universe this happened which is different from this other universe" and such and so forth. BUT, it wasn't that confusing. Because I knew the characters and I knew about the girl who is already dead in the beginning (it's Jean. It isn't a spoiler. Stop freaking out. Just stop). And again, BUT the two X-Men movies that we have are kind of mixed into one in this. The whole "cure for the mutants" didn't happen while Jean through her fit and went kind of crazy. Emma Frost (that girl from the other X-Men movie that has diamond skin and can read minds) is in this and is actually playing for the good guys now, even though I sense she had a past. Oh and don't forget to throw a little Avengers in there with a Agent Fury. We start off with Kitty (girl who can walk through walls). She is joining the remaining X-Men (Logan/Wolverine, Hank/Beast, Summers/Cyclops and Emma Frost) to help young mutant kids come to turns with their powers and who they are. Well, there's this weird alien that wants to kill all mutants and there's also a doctor lady who claims to have found a cure. So sure, let's put together a bunch of people who don't like each other and then throw actual problems at them. The artistry is wonderful and brilliant, even though some costumes are so unrealistic I just roll my eyes *cough* Frost *cough*. The story had a lot of snarky comics and funny pieces, like the image above was suppose to be.. well, without giving anything away, it was suppose to be Hawaii but it was forgotten that they were a lot bigger. I could tell who people were just by what they looked like (since I have watched the movies religiously since I was in high school). The characters have a lot of edges and angles to them, and you know that you are just about to see another level to them. They all have history together which is kind of fun to dig into it. Also, Wolverine is forever my forever. I am obviously going to annoy the crap out of all my followers and friends here and continue on with this set of "Astonishing X-Men," but I will try to space them out some so you don't end up hating me too much. Side note: I am looking for other awesome graphic novels / comics. So if you have any you love and you want someone else to love, comment below or message me! I would love to check them out! WrensReads | Goodreads | Twitter | Instagram

  11. 5 out of 5

    Sesana

    There was no question in my mind that Joss Whedon can write, and quite well at that. But can he write the X-Men? The answer, of course, is that he can, and quite well at that. This is, I believe, the first X book I've picked up in probably eight years. Nightcrawler is my favorite, and between (view spoiler)[retconning his origin in the most stupid way possible and killing him off (hide spoiler)] I've been avoiding them as unnecessary stressors. But that means that I missed Whedon's run on Astonis There was no question in my mind that Joss Whedon can write, and quite well at that. But can he write the X-Men? The answer, of course, is that he can, and quite well at that. This is, I believe, the first X book I've picked up in probably eight years. Nightcrawler is my favorite, and between (view spoiler)[retconning his origin in the most stupid way possible and killing him off (hide spoiler)] I've been avoiding them as unnecessary stressors. But that means that I missed Whedon's run on Astonishing X-Men, and that's just a travesty. This is just about as good as it gets. The plot is tight, consistent, and raises interesting questions. (There's a possible "cure" for mutants- now what?) The characterization is spot on, hell, better than most outings these characters have had. I think I might actually like Scott Summers in this book, and I don't know if I can process that. The dialog is natural, neither corny, preachy, or overly wordy, and there's humor. There's an emotional climax to this particular book that's written with a sincerity that made it affecting. And the art! Do you know how many times I've picked up X books only to see that the artist gave every woman the exact same face? It's just so nice to see good art in an X book. I can only think of one specific complaint, which is that Whedon didn't use Nightcrawler. I want to see him write Nightcrawler. Yes, this is selfish of me, but I think I'm allowed.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jim

    Joss Whedon's Astonishing X-Men will ..em..you know astonish you. Nice story, very good job with the characters and i personaly liked the art very much. So if you are an X-Men fan and haven't read this yet ( unlikely i know ) do it now

  13. 4 out of 5

    Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)

    I have been on a Marvel roll lately. It's mainly due to the fact that I've been mainlining Marvel shows on Netflix, along with the various Marvel movies we've been treated to lately. I discovered that there was a motion comic series for The Astonishing X-Men, and some of the episodes are posted on Netflix. Watching it and "Wolverine and the X-Men" (and loving it), encouraged me to check out some of the comics after many years of not reading them. Luckily my awesome library has this series! I will I have been on a Marvel roll lately. It's mainly due to the fact that I've been mainlining Marvel shows on Netflix, along with the various Marvel movies we've been treated to lately. I discovered that there was a motion comic series for The Astonishing X-Men, and some of the episodes are posted on Netflix. Watching it and "Wolverine and the X-Men" (and loving it), encouraged me to check out some of the comics after many years of not reading them. Luckily my awesome library has this series! I will admit I am an admirer of Joss Whedon's tv shows, and his characteristic wit is on display in this comic book series run that he authors. His snark and biting sarcasm, plus some sociopolitical commentary. It's fun to see his words come out of the mouth of Emma Frost, Wolverine, and the gang. Not to say it feels foreign to the X-Men, but Whedon just has a characteristic writing style. Along with the writing, the artwork is beautiful. Bright and stylish, but also detailed to the degree that Kitty's hair blows in the wind like real life, Wolverine's arms and back are covered in hair (let me say that he's the only guy who can get a free pass for back hair), and Emma Frost is unrealistically gorgeous, both in her flesh and diamond form (Can I admit I have a tiny girl crush on Emma Frost?). I thought I was over the X-Men, but I see that I am very wrong. I am definitely officially sucked back into the world of the mutants. I wish I could run back to the library today to get the next volume. FYI: Marvel has a wikia database that is tres awesome: http://marvel.wikia.com/Main_Page Overall rating: 4.5/5.0 stars.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    Oh, X-Men, how do I love thee? I shall not bore anyone by counting the ways, but suffice it to say I love 'em. However, my introduction to the X-Men did not come in the form of a comic book, but instead from the Saturday morning cartoon show that used to run on FOX and, later, the big budget movies. I wasn't a comic book reader as a kid (mainly due to lack of access--there were no bookstores in my small rural town) and discovering that the X-Men had been around forever did not exactly encourage Oh, X-Men, how do I love thee? I shall not bore anyone by counting the ways, but suffice it to say I love 'em. However, my introduction to the X-Men did not come in the form of a comic book, but instead from the Saturday morning cartoon show that used to run on FOX and, later, the big budget movies. I wasn't a comic book reader as a kid (mainly due to lack of access--there were no bookstores in my small rural town) and discovering that the X-Men had been around forever did not exactly encourage me to begin reading. I assumed that I would have to start at the beginning and the idea of doing so was overwhelming. What finally inspired me to begin reading this series is that it's written by Joss Whedon (oh, Firefly, how do I love thee?). Whedon plus the X-Men is an irresistable combination. There's definitely some trademark Whedon going on here, most notably in the snappy dialogue and the clever scenes (my favorite is when Ord breaks into the school, only to find the X-Men aren't there--just the students, thus leading to an amusing "would you like to leave a message" dialogue). However, overall, it didn't grab me. I think this is mainly because the X-Men involved (Cyclops, Kitty Pryde, Beast, Emma Frost, and, of course, the ubiquitous Wolverine) just aren't among my favorites. All in all, though, it was a pretty good book and I'll definitely read the others in the series.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Scott S.

    4.5 stars Ah, Kitty Pryde. I guess I think of her as an avatar for the reader with this team's line-up. We may not have Beast's intellect, Emma Frost's looks, Wolverine's toughness, or Cyclops' leadership skills, but Kitty is just Kitty (and all the better for it) - as in plucky, aware, good-hearted and dependable. I thought she was one of the best things about the All New X-Men series that I read earlier this year, and the feeling continues with Astonishing Vol. 1. There was a lot of good action 4.5 stars Ah, Kitty Pryde. I guess I think of her as an avatar for the reader with this team's line-up. We may not have Beast's intellect, Emma Frost's looks, Wolverine's toughness, or Cyclops' leadership skills, but Kitty is just Kitty (and all the better for it) - as in plucky, aware, good-hearted and dependable. I thought she was one of the best things about the All New X-Men series that I read earlier this year, and the feeling continues with Astonishing Vol. 1. There was a lot of good action, good dialogue (the spirited bickering between Kitty and Emma; Cyclops and Nick Fury; Wolverine and pretty much everyone) and a nice amount of unexpected humor, as well. As the team strutted in tandem to board the X-Jet and intervene in a hostage situation . . . well, it's just one of those little things that make superhero comic books worth reading.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Holden Johnson

    Excellent story arc. The moral battle of curing mutants or destroying the cure to prevent it being used as a weapon is ongoing in the Xmen universe. This series by Joss Whedon does really well and I had a blast throughout the whole thing. I'm...made...of...RAGE!! Good to see Peter back as well =)

  17. 4 out of 5

    J.M.

    I haven't picked up an X-Men comic in a long time, unless you count the WOLVERINE ORIGINS: DEADPOOL graphic novel I reviewed recently; example, I had no idea that Scott Summers (Cyclops) and Emma Frost (the White Queen), were a couple. When did that happen? Nevertheless, in ASTONISHING X-MEN, it works. I love the interplay between Scott and Emma, with her love for Scott sullied by her bitterness of what he once shared with Jean Grey. I also like Kitty Pryde's overt mistrust of the White Queen ow I haven't picked up an X-Men comic in a long time, unless you count the WOLVERINE ORIGINS: DEADPOOL graphic novel I reviewed recently; example, I had no idea that Scott Summers (Cyclops) and Emma Frost (the White Queen), were a couple. When did that happen? Nevertheless, in ASTONISHING X-MEN, it works. I love the interplay between Scott and Emma, with her love for Scott sullied by her bitterness of what he once shared with Jean Grey. I also like Kitty Pryde's overt mistrust of the White Queen owing to prior bad blood. As a fan of both Joss Whedon and John Cassaday, I've been excited to read ASTONISHING X-MEN for quite a while. So far, though the first six issues in the "Gifted" trade paperback, I haven't been disappointed. Whedon's storyline is tight. His plot moves along at a great clip. The dialogue has just the right amount of pith and wit (say "pith and wit" five times fast -- sorta fun, huh?). Cassaday's art is a real pleasure to soak in -- he perfectly combines heroics, drama, emotion, and realism with his masterful artistic abilities. On that last bit, realism, I'm just not into every bulging vein and corded sinew popping through a hero's costume. Cassaday has a knack for making his heroes look both heroic and real at the same time, and I love it. He's been one of my favorite comic artists going all the way back to DESPERADOES. The "Gifted" storyline centers around a mutant cure with the undertone of a secret alien invasion. The covert organizations of S.H.I.E.L.D. (Nick Fury!) and S.W.O.R.D. end up getting involved, and one of the more compelling parts of the story is Dr. Hank McCoy's (Beast) personal struggle, for of all the mutants in the current team -- Scott, Emma, Kitty, Logan (Wolverine) -- Hank is the one whose mutations are the most evident and unattractive, making this miracle cure a very ambiguous lure. I think this is enough of a teaser, so I won't spoil any more of this excellent series. If you haven't picked up an X-Men title lately, I recommend the ASTONISHING X-MEN. You can waltz right in, quickly get up to speed, and enjoy a quality comic series with "marvelous" art (pun intended!). Four out of five stars. -- Also check out these titles featuring John Cassaday's work: , ,

  18. 5 out of 5

    Sam Quixote

    Picking up where Grant Morrison left off, Joss Whedon begins his run on the X-Men with a new line up consisting of Cyclops, Emma Frost, Beast, Kitty Pryde, Lockheed the X-Dragon, and Wolverine (Xavier is "on sabbatical"). He's also reinstated the classic superhero outfits, ditching Morrison and Quitely's additions of black leather as "it was spooking people". Having seen the third X-Men movie long before picking up this book I noticed the storyline they used in that film being used here for the f Picking up where Grant Morrison left off, Joss Whedon begins his run on the X-Men with a new line up consisting of Cyclops, Emma Frost, Beast, Kitty Pryde, Lockheed the X-Dragon, and Wolverine (Xavier is "on sabbatical"). He's also reinstated the classic superhero outfits, ditching Morrison and Quitely's additions of black leather as "it was spooking people". Having seen the third X-Men movie long before picking up this book I noticed the storyline they used in that film being used here for the first time - a cure for the mutant gene. Whedon came up with this great idea and full credit to him for making it both emotional and intellectual rather than simply another threat to be beaten up with mutant powers. Beast especially is a tragic case as his appearance has always bothered him and for a chance to reverse that... well I won't give away what he decides. Suffice it to say this story has heart, something rare in superhero comics. But it's Whedon so there's plenty of fun moments and jokes to make this a great read. Artist John Cassady is one of comics' best living artists and his work here is no less amazing as it was on "Planetary". His Kitty Pryde in particular is very good, though there's no character he doesn't do justice to. I've watched Buffy, Firefly, and of course The Avengers, but this is the first Joss Whedon I've read and I'm pleasantly surprised by his high level of writing ability translating off screen and on the comics page. "Gifted" is an excellent start to an imaginative and fully realised X-Men storyline that I'll be looking forward to reading more of. Recommended for all X-fans.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Aaron

    Cyclops, Beast, Wolverine, Shadowcat, and Emma Frost make up a new incarnation of the X-Men. In an effort to promote a positive profile, the team resumes its helpful "superteam" activities and stops an unexplained attack by the alien Ord of the Breakworld. Meanwhile, Doctor Kavita Rao of Benetech has just announced a cure for mutations, which doesn't sit well with the X-Men. (view spoiler)[The mysterious Ord and Dr. Rao are connected in their motives and are in fact working together: Ord believe Cyclops, Beast, Wolverine, Shadowcat, and Emma Frost make up a new incarnation of the X-Men. In an effort to promote a positive profile, the team resumes its helpful "superteam" activities and stops an unexplained attack by the alien Ord of the Breakworld. Meanwhile, Doctor Kavita Rao of Benetech has just announced a cure for mutations, which doesn't sit well with the X-Men. (view spoiler)[The mysterious Ord and Dr. Rao are connected in their motives and are in fact working together: Ord believes an X-Man will destroy his homeworld in three years and so wants to eliminate mutants, and Rao genuinely wants to help those adversely affected by mutation by using Ord's tech. The whole enterprise is being supported by S.W.O.R.D., the parallel organization to S.H.I.E.L.D. that counters extraterrestrial threats, in order to avoid an interstellar war with Breakworld. It's revealed that the formerly dead X-Man Colossus is alive and has been a captive of Ord for years. (hide spoiler)] Joss Whedon's first X-Men arc is exciting and funny, several plot threads are brought together effortlessly, and the team dynamic is so well done that this feels almost like a quintessential roster. Despite some references to previous events, this does seem like a good jumping on point for readers new to the X-Men, though there are plenty of elements that will entertain old fans.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Ben

    As a person newer to the comic universe, nothing frightened and confused me more than the plethora of "X-men" comic books. I had assumed to skip on the whole thing until a friend recommended this series written by the eternally intriguing Joss Whedon. Removed from the twisted continuity and stories of the present X-men comics, this series approached the team in some general present time in the marvel universe and created a simpler context with which to follow a very entertaining story. This revi As a person newer to the comic universe, nothing frightened and confused me more than the plethora of "X-men" comic books. I had assumed to skip on the whole thing until a friend recommended this series written by the eternally intriguing Joss Whedon. Removed from the twisted continuity and stories of the present X-men comics, this series approached the team in some general present time in the marvel universe and created a simpler context with which to follow a very entertaining story. This review applies to all of the volumes, even thought the third is my favorite hence far. I am greatly anticipating the (spoiled) ending of Joss' run in volume four.

  21. 5 out of 5

    kristen ♡

    this is my first time reading an x-men comic and i’m amazed!!! i thought i would be lost but it was smoothly written and it was like every issue was an episode of a tv show you’re binge watching. my favorite marvel heroine is emma frost (she’s a hero!) and i‘be been wanting to read x-men because of her but wanted a comic that looked like it was pretty full of her. this was perfect!!! emma and scott are basically the main characters in this but the others still have their moments. reading this felt this is my first time reading an x-men comic and i’m amazed!!! i thought i would be lost but it was smoothly written and it was like every issue was an episode of a tv show you’re binge watching. my favorite marvel heroine is emma frost (she’s a hero!) and i‘be been wanting to read x-men because of her but wanted a comic that looked like it was pretty full of her. this was perfect!!! emma and scott are basically the main characters in this but the others still have their moments. reading this felt like watching a movie, and the last page is the cliffhanger before the sequel! 😩💙 i am officially obsessed with x-men!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Donovan

    Solidly fun and intelligently written. A great look at our heroes reuniting after several years. Fantastic artwork, too. Astonishing!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Miriam

    The art was ok.. but the story great =)

  24. 5 out of 5

    Marina

    3.5

  25. 5 out of 5

    Justin

    Oh, yes. Yes, this is definitely what I’ve been looking for. This is… yeah. This is X-Men like I remember from back in the days when I was running around my backyard pretending to be Iceman. The X-books were my comic of choice for many years, so I’ve been itching to get back to them ever since I rediscovered the joy of graphic novels. Trouble is, the mutant books are particularly intimidating for newcomers, or for anyone who hasn’t been paying attention for the past decade or two. Soap operas ha Oh, yes. Yes, this is definitely what I’ve been looking for. This is… yeah. This is X-Men like I remember from back in the days when I was running around my backyard pretending to be Iceman. The X-books were my comic of choice for many years, so I’ve been itching to get back to them ever since I rediscovered the joy of graphic novels. Trouble is, the mutant books are particularly intimidating for newcomers, or for anyone who hasn’t been paying attention for the past decade or two. Soap operas have nothing on X-Men. Huge crossovers. Complicated backstories, rife with retconning. Hordes of new characters, and plenty of old characters that died somewhere along the way. Tangled plots that involve asteroids, giant robots, genocide, aliens, love triangles, mutant viruses… it’s all quite a lot. Not to mention the mangled version from the movies that has also taken its place in pop culture. I was afraid that I would be hopelessly lost when I stepped back in. I should have put my trust in Whedon. This first story arc, Gifted, is a slick and straightforward story that does away with all the franchise weirdness, and gives just enough backstory to make sure that we are up to speed. Professor Xavier is away from his school; the X-Men are led by an uncharacteristically hesitant Scott Summers, who is leaning heavily on his new paramour, Emma Frost. The ever-lovable Beast continues to teach at the school despite his seemingly worsening mutation, and two familiar faces are called back to the grounds: Wolverine and Shadowcat (with, of course, the dragon Lockheed in tow). Amidst an ever-worsening climate of anti-mutant fear and loathing, Cyclops plans to bring the X-Men back into the public consciousness as the heroes and protectors they have always been. Their mission to astonish the world comes at an unfortunate time, however, as a company named Benetech announces the development of a mutant “cure,” sparking tension between those who see the mutant gene as something that should be cured and those that don’t. Meanwhile, a hulking figure calling himself Ord of the Breakworld suddenly appears, and his connection to both the X-Men and Benetech leads to surprising consequences and a warning of imminent danger. I jumped back into X-Men with this volume because I saw Whedon’s name on it. I was hoping he would bring his talent for dialogue to bear, and I wasn’t disappointed. These versions of the X-Men are simply fantastic. The banter is hilarious (so much that I kept reading snatches of it aloud to my patient and somewhat annoyed wife), with Whedon’s trademark wit firmly in place. Even so, no character felt untrue. I’ve been familiar with the exploits of Wolverine, Cyclops, Shadowcat, Beast, and the White Queen for some time now, and even with a new sense of sarcasm and irony infused into the proceedings, these are all very much the characters they have always been. Whedon’s style does not detract from the history of these characters. Rather, it makes them much more sympathetic, and a joy to read. The story itself is fantastic, too. My only quibble with it comes from the fact that this is a collection of individual comics, rather than a graphic novel in its own right, meaning that the action moves so fast that there are missed opportunities for deeper story development. However, considering the medium, the story is actually very well done, and tense enough to keep readers turning pages. The various twists are also nice in this arc, as well; the sudden return of a character that I loved when I was still reading X-Men and died some time ago made me, a 30-year-old man, bounce with glee. And Cassaday’s art is lovely. I left comic books around the time that Rob Liefeld’s bullshit heyday was peaking in titles like X-Force, so Cassaday’s intense, realistic artwork was a fantastic complement to the story. Every panel was flawless, and every character as nuanced and individual as if I were looking at photographs. I really can’t say enough good things about this book. I hear the second story arc isn’t quite as polished, but I’m in, at least for the Whedon/Cassaday volumes. This graphic novel has me excited about X-Men again, and that’s saying a lot.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Milo (BOK)

    “A wonderful read, proving that Whedon can master not only films and TV shows, but graphic novels as well. A must not just for X-Men fans, but for graphic novel readers in general.” ~The Founding Fields Writer: Joss Whedon | Art: John Cassady | Publisher: Marvel Comics | Collects: Astonishing X-Men #1-7 The X-Men are quickly becoming my favourite comics team. With a wide variety of cast, a rich history – and a wealth of potential ideas, you can throw them into any situation with almost any writer “A wonderful read, proving that Whedon can master not only films and TV shows, but graphic novels as well. A must not just for X-Men fans, but for graphic novel readers in general.” ~The Founding Fields Writer: Joss Whedon | Art: John Cassady | Publisher: Marvel Comics | Collects: Astonishing X-Men #1-7 The X-Men are quickly becoming my favourite comics team. With a wide variety of cast, a rich history – and a wealth of potential ideas, you can throw them into any situation with almost any writer and most of the time it’ll be enjoyable. This is because I haven’t read a bad X-Men comic. I’ve seen a bad X-Men film – that honour goes to X3, but in the list of comics that I’ve read so far, I still haven’t encountered a bad X-Men book. Ultimate X-Men Vol. 1: The Tomorrow People by Mark Millar, Wolverine and the X-Men: Regenesis by Jason Aaron and the first few issues of every Marvel Now! title that I’ve read focused on the X-Men have proved to be really enjoyable, and with someone like Joss Whedon writing the book, the man responsible for not only The Avengers but also the awesome cult TV show Firefly, I got the feeling I wasn’t going to be disappointed. And whilst it wasn’t quite what I was expecting, the first volume of Astonishing X-Men certainly hits the ground running and delivers a stunning first installment into the series that I will certainly strive to pick up the next volume when and where I can, especially as I seem to be reading too few second volumes of series – my entire print comic collection is only first volumes. I blame this for the fact that there’s too much stuff out there, and not enough money. "Dream-team creators Joss Whedon (TV’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and John Cassaday (Planetary, Captain America) present the explosive flagship X-Men series – marking a return to classic greatness and the beginning of a brand-new era for the X-Men! Cyclops and Emma Frost re-form the X-Men with the express purpose of “astonishing” the world. But when breaking news regarding the mutant gene unexpectedly hits the airwaves, will it derail their new plans before they even get started?" The first thing that leapt out at me when I read the blurb was this – wasn’t Emma Frost a villain? After all, I’d only encountered her in First Class before coming to Astonishing X-Men, where she took the side of Sebastian Shaw and the Hellfire Club and later Magneto following the end of the film. So naturally, I was a bit confused to see her not only as part of the X-Men, but in a relationship with Cyclops, which Wolverine doesn’t seem to be too happy about, especially illustrated early on – when it becomes apparent that without Xavier at the school, things aren’t all kept in line. Read the Rest of the Review: http://thefoundingfields.com/2013/02/....

  27. 5 out of 5

    Arun Divakar

    It has been a pretty long time since I read an X-Men comic. At one point in time, the adventures of the team proved a tad too much for me and I had decided that enough was enough and moved on. There were quite a few storylines (the details of which escape me even now) which were filled to the brim with inanities that prompted this decision. Having heard volumes about Joss Whedon’s run on the series was how I finally decided to take a quick peek into this volume and came to the conclusion that th It has been a pretty long time since I read an X-Men comic. At one point in time, the adventures of the team proved a tad too much for me and I had decided that enough was enough and moved on. There were quite a few storylines (the details of which escape me even now) which were filled to the brim with inanities that prompted this decision. Having heard volumes about Joss Whedon’s run on the series was how I finally decided to take a quick peek into this volume and came to the conclusion that the praise was totally well deserved. The first volume is a literal breath of fresh air for a series that was slowly sinking into cliché. Whedon does succeed in making the X-Men an astonishing team. For all its shortcomings, the idea behind the X-men is truly a fantastic one. The fact that there exists racism in the world and that we ostracize certain sections of the society is common knowledge. Through a not so subtle approach, Stan Lee was able to create a team of such individuals who the others called freaks and form a team out of them. Prof. Xavier and his team has grown by leaps and bounds from this point. Whedon takes a big advantage out of the team by taking Xavier out of the equation. When the story begins Xavier has relinquished the leadership of the team to an untested Cyclops, Jean Grey is dead and many are yet not over the grief and fury, Emma Frost is a team member who not many trust and Logan is yet to make an appearance. Through many a misstep, grumble and bruise the team slowly bonds against a potentially cataclysmic invention – a cure for the mutant strain. How many of the super powered mutants would want to shrug away the isolation and fear and find a way into a normal life ? But is there is something untoward behind this cure and who is behind it ? The team goes investigating and kicks up a firestorm in the process. The story is quite an interesting and serious one for the X universe and the dialog is quick and witty. Being a comic, the whole concept of death is a rather elastic one with rebirths and reappearances being part of the regular fare. So it was not much of a surprise that Colossus turned up bang in the middle of action either ! The art by Jon Cassaday is impressive and gives a much awaited makeover to the characters. One of those good reboots to a classic franchise. I need more of this partnership.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Doctorjimmy

    Διάβασε όλο το review εδώ Ο Whedon είναι γνωστό πως έχει ταλέντο στο να γράφει ομάδες ανθρώπων και το Gifted δεν αποτελεί εξαίρεση στον κανόνα: τα μέλη των X-Men αλληλεπιδρούν απολαυστικά μεταξύ τους, είτε ενώ ανταλλάσσουν κακίες είτε ενώ ασχολούνται με το ζήτημα της υπόθεσης, ενώ ακόμη και ένας πρωτάρης στα comics της ομάδας σαν και εμένα μπορεί εύκολα να διακρίνει τις προσωπικότητες των ηρώων. Ακόμη, η ύπαρξη της θεραπείας φαίνεται να φέρνει αντικρουόμενες απόψεις μέσα στην ομάδα: ο Beast, για Διάβασε όλο το review εδώ Ο Whedon είναι γνωστό πως έχει ταλέντο στο να γράφει ομάδες ανθρώπων και το Gifted δεν αποτελεί εξαίρεση στον κανόνα: τα μέλη των X-Men αλληλεπιδρούν απολαυστικά μεταξύ τους, είτε ενώ ανταλλάσσουν κακίες είτε ενώ ασχολούνται με το ζήτημα της υπόθεσης, ενώ ακόμη και ένας πρωτάρης στα comics της ομάδας σαν και εμένα μπορεί εύκολα να διακρίνει τις προσωπικότητες των ηρώων. Ακόμη, η ύπαρξη της θεραπείας φαίνεται να φέρνει αντικρουόμενες απόψεις μέσα στην ομάδα: ο Beast, για παράδειγμα, μπαίνει στον πειρασμό να απαλλαγεί από την διαφορετικότητα του, ενώ άλλοι διαφωνούν κάθετα με κάτι τέτοιο. Και το καθαρό, γεμάτο ζωντάνια και χρώμα σκιτσάρισμα του Cassaday (που μου θυμίζει έντονα το στυλ του Frank Quitely) συνοδεύει εξαιρετικά τις ιδέες του Joss. Εκεί που το arc με απογοητεύει είναι στους αντιπάλους: ο Ord στερείται προσωπικότητας και, μπορεί να έχει πιο ενδιαφέροντα κίνητρα από τον μέσο villain, αλλά εξερευνώνται διεκπεραιωτικά. Παρόμοια αδιάφορη είναι και η γιατρός Kavita Rao, η οποία βέβαια δεν είναι ακριβώς villain (προσπαθεί να κάνει κάτι καλό, αλλά με αμφίβολο τρόπο). Κρίμα, γιατί τα ζητήματα που θίγει η ύπαρξη της θεραπείας είναι πολύ ενδιαφέροντα και, αν αντιπροσωπεύονταν από πιο ενδιαφέροντες αντιπάλους, η ιστορία θα ήταν πολύ καλύτερη.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Chloe

    I wish my friend carolyne still lived nearby because i feel as though we could have some very impassioned talks about Whedon's run on this series. (hint: i find it regrettable)

  30. 5 out of 5

    that_scarlet_girl

    Whedon+Cassaday=awesomeness

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