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And oh, she would SO kill me for calling her that. Or just be really confused. I'd be all :D!!! and she'd be all :I o_. :snikt stabbity:

So yup, I FINALLY got my hot little hands on X:23-The Killing Dream. I say finally because amazon sure were intent on fucking me around with this one. I think it was my constant ranting on Twitter that convinced them to get their butts in gear.

An' ya know what means...



Anyway, Laura is a character who caused me some eyerolling affliction when she was first put on the scene waayyyy back in my X-Men Evo days. "a female fucking Wolverine :eyeroll: like he's not everywhere as it is :eyeroll:" But after reading X:23-Target X I was pretty much hooked on this poor, tragic kid-call it my big sister complex. Of course helped by the fecking gorgeous Mike Choi/Aonia Oback art on that book. So I've been intently devouring everything Laura-related I can get my grubby little hands on ever since. So when her solo ongoing was announced, I knew it was going to be a lonnnng, anxious wait until the TPB landed with me (I don't do singles, they fall apart too easily. And it was a long wait. Longer, thanks to fucking Amazon being tits. AHEM.

Anyway to recap-X:23 is a clone of Wolverine (you know the short, stabby, hairy one from the X-Men) created as an assassin for hire by a group of shady seedy fuckers called The Facility. They hired world-renowed geneticist, Dr. Sarah Kinney to work on their cloning wolverine problem and the solution she came up with was to make the clone a female as the genes in the sample of Wolvie's DNA they had were damaged. Because they weren't totally sold on the idea, they made Sarah act as surrogate mother for the embryo codenamed X:23 as she was the 23rd attempt at creating a female clone. The other scientist on the team-Zander Rice had Wolvie and Daddy issues (Wolvie killed his dad when escaping from the Weapon X program).

Anyyway-when X:23 was 7, they forcibly induced her mutation and coated her claws with adamantium (Sarah's narrative in Innocence Lost says that Rice removed her claws, sharpened them and then cpoated them with no anesthetic-Laura's flashback seems to show Rice sharpening her claws whilst they were still attached to her the bastard.Plus the timeline is fucking conufsing-it states in Target X that Kimura was introduced a week after her claws were coated but the caption there reads "12 uears old" when she laready had aadamantium claws in the training sequence where the caption reads "11 years old" so we're going on the 7 years old timeline in the original Inocence Lost annnd I'm totally digressing here...) then trained her in various martial arts etc, oh and they also created a trigger scent which one hiff sends her into a berserker rage. They tested this on her sensei, because he was kind to her. Yup, the Facility are stone cold shitters alright.

Anyway when Laura was 13, Sarah had had enough, especially after Rice showed her the embryonic pods for X-24 through X-50 and tasked her daughter with one final mission-destroy the pods and kill Rice and the other scientists. Laura did this with aplomb and her and her mother were finally free of the Facility.

For all of five seconds because Rice had planted Trigger Scent on Sarah and Laura killed own mother. With her dying words, Sarah gave Laura her name.

Other stuff follows but basically this: Laura was recruited by Cyclops as part of X-Force, the X-Men black ops team. Now she's been booted off by her father figure Wolverine as he thinks she's been through enough so she's trying to deal with that and trying to find her own way in a world thats done nothing but use her so far.

Which brings us, finally I hear you say, to The Killing Dream.

First off, I am super super super super pleased with Laura's characterisation in this book-Marjorie Liu writes Laura damn well.

I wasn't sold on conrad's art at first but it grew on me, the guest artist Sana Takeda's art however, is fecking gorgeous. Not too keen on the other guest artist who appears to be randomly slotted in a few pages here and there, not sure whats up with that either.

The first part of the book is part of the Wolverine Goes to Hell storyline which features Laura battling a demon masquerading as Wolverine, taunting her. also the reaction of her ex-teammates in the New X-Men. Julian is sweet and I never bloody liked him but I wanted to smack Noriko soemthing rotten-highly hypocritical of her to be condemning Laura for killing when she was all gung-ho to kill the Purifiers during the Messiah Complex storyline. Silly mare.

Anyway Laura, to save Julian battles the demonic Wolvie in her mind and finally meets a starry version of herself who helps Laura defeat the demon and return to the waking world. Also leaves a nice star shaped scar on her plan. Hmmm.

The second part of the book is the Miss Sinister storyline and sees an ol' fan favourite join Laura when she leaves Utopia to find her light. They run into Miss Sinister who wants Laura's body as hers is getting taken over by the origial Sinister. Needless to say, our girl gets out which is looking to lead into the Daken crossover. Exciting times ahead for lil' Laur-Bear.

Issue 1 is obviously the jumping on point, it sets up the past nicely with X-Force etc and provides a helping mentor figure in the shape of Storm who I just love in this. She's very kind to Laura and I think the only person who could have fulfilled that role is ahem...out of action (you thought you were going to get a x-men related post without a mention of HER? dream on shugahs.) Storm's sad little monologue about the recently departed Nightcrawler is very sweet and true to her. "You are no longer homesick for God. Be my angel, Kurt" Gah, beautiful. I hope when Laura finally returns to Utopia, Storm continues to act as a sort of mentor to her, its something I think she needs. The lines in the kids party scene were cute (Psylocke has cellulite, who woulda thunk it?) and Sooraya rubbing it in their faces the following morning. Go teetotal girl!

Issue 2 kicks off from the fire in a outeach home, we see our first glipse of Gambit who gives Laura his coat. He stays in the shade for a bit however whilst Laura is whisked off to recover. Storm arrives and comforts her again. Then she goes off with Cyclops whilst Wolverine...or not Wolverine jumps in. Laura knows what he is and stabs him but he then fakes being weak and hurt as Julian comes ot the rescue...twit. Julian gets stabbed by Hellverine and he makes Laura an offer she can't refuse. Except our girl is going to do the one thing she knows how to do: Fight back. Gambit's line was my favourite part of this when he and Storm are walking past Laura's room unknowing of the chaos inside "If I can't make her smile, I'll steal one for her" D'awwww Remy.

Issue 3, there is one thing which really stands out for me and that is the "puppy" scene by Sana Takeda. I saw those pages online a while back and they tore me up because a: can't stand cruelty to animals and b: can't stand cruelty to Lauras. And this is BOTH. Backed up by the cutest looking wee!Laura you ever did see. It also ties in nicely to a single panel in Target X where Megan and Laura are in a petstore, Megan is surrounded by puppies and Laura by kittens-Megan is holding a puppy out to her and she is sort of sitting back, looking somewhat bemused/kinda edgy. Laura is definitely a cat-person and I think those three pages are why. It's bloody heartbreaking.

Asides from that, there is the defeat of Hellverine and the upper echelons talking about her and my goddess, Emma sure flip flopped from issue one! Be consistent woman-you either think that what you did was shitty or you're going to toe the scott party line. Jean would never put up with this crap. (yup, her again :P)

Anyway Laura leaves with some parting words from Storm, followed by Miss Sinister. Dumdumdum and whatnot.

Issue 4 touches slightly on Laura's seedy past as a child protitute when she meets Alice and then later kills her "handler" and this is when Remy shows up-he doesn't judge her, doesn't scold her, simply accepts her for who she is. also there is a further guest artist chucked in for th final few pages here who is a lot better than the one for the next to ieesues. I like Laura's slightly curly hair and facial expressions. And as one commentator said-Sarah Kinney is Laura's kryptonite.

Issue 5 we meet Claudine Renko/Miss Sinister who is living in a cave with kids and its here the Weapon X program and Malcolm Colcord rear their ugly heads again, claudine effectively uses Laura's sympathy for the kids as she knows damn well what Weapon X does. Laura however, isn't completely fooled and the issue ends with the reveal that Mr. Sinister is hiding inside Miss Sinsister-two beings battling for control over the same body.

Issue 6 is a real character defining moment for Remy-there is nothing, nothing in the universe he hates more than Mr. Sinsiter and in the few brief panels at the start it really shows. Of course he gets his ass kicked as does indded our Laur-bear but Miss Sinister is soon back in control and ready to make the transfer-her conciouness into Laura's mind-there is a interesting discussion between the two about souls. Unfortunately, for Claudine, Mr. Sinister makes the jump instead of her. Laura boots him the fuck out of her. The machinery goes up and Gambit only stops Laura going after Sinister and a further Alice clone by mentioning the children which is revelaed he may have slightly lied about "Stab me later" XD This could cost them as it would appear the last clone is awake...with a Sinister inside (sorta like Intel inside only more red diamonds)

So with that over now all I have to do is wait for the Daken Crossover (which is gonna be awesome and Volume 2 (which will also be awesome).....ARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRGH!!!

"You were a dream, and then you were more than a dream"
"Choice is your weapon. Belief is your weapon. No one can hurt you if you remember that. You have been through the worst and you were not broken. You will never be broken"
-Laura's "Light"

Carrie

September 2011

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