Character Spotlight: Wolverine

(Image: Marvel Comics)

With the new film Logan being released in theaters today, it would be fitting to focus the next character spotlight on Wolverine. Wolverine was created in 1974 by Len Wein with his costume being created by legendary artist John Romita, SR. He started off as an adversary for the Hulk but would go on to star in the X-Men and become not only one of Marvel’s most recognizable characters, but one of the most popular comic book heroes of all time. He has quite the library of great stories so let’s dig in.

 

(Image: Marvel Comics)

The Incredible Hulk # 180

Author: Len Wein

Illustrator: Herb Trimpe

Wolverine first appeared as an adversary for the Hulk. Working for the Canadian government’s Department H, Wolverine’s first mission was to stop the Hulk from rampaging over the wilderness. This first time match up would be one of many for these two characters. Epic does not even begin to describe the brawls the between Wolverine and the Hulk.

(Image: Marvel Comics)

Giant Size X-Men #1

Author: Len Wein

Artist: Dave Cockrum

Wolverine was intended to be a throw away character but he was drafted over to the X-Men titles. In this story, the original X-Men including Cyclops, Marvel Girl, Angel, Beast and Iceman, went on a mission to an island to find a powerful mutant. Things go terribly wrong and only Cyclops returns. Wanting to save his students, Professor Xavier recruits new members to save the original team. This new group consists of international mutants like Colossus, Nightcrawler, Storm and of course, Wolverine. This issue marked the debut of some of the most popular characters in the X-Men universe and cements Wolverine’s legacy with the X-Men.

(Image: Marvel Comics)

The Dark Phoenix Saga

Author: Chris Claremont

Illustrator: John Byrne

The Dark Phoenix Saga is a classic and one of the most beloved X-Men stories of all time. While this story primarily focuses on the fall of Jean Grey and Cyclops, it includes multiple stand out moments for Wolverine. One such moment includes Wolverine being taken out by the members of the Hellfire Club. Wolverine crawls from the sewers, angered and determined to exact his revenge on his enemies. The Dark Phoenix Saga is an incredible story for Wolverine and the X-Men as a whole. It should not be missed.

(Image: Marvel Comics)

Wolverine

Author: Chris Claremont

Illustrator: Frank Miller

Wolverine was finally given his own mini series in the early 1980’s after his rise in popularity. Written by Chris Claremont and drawn by legendary artist Frank Miller, Wolverine chronicles the return of the character to Japan to rekindle his romance with his ex. Of this being Wolverine, the story is rife with loss, being broken as well as major action that includes ninjas. This is the first of many fights between Wolverine and ninjas. His first solo outing is one of his best and this story deals with tragedy and loss very well. For any Wolverine fan, this story is a must read.

(Image: Marvel Comics)

Weapon X

Author/Illustrator: Barry Windsor-Smith

One of the longest mysteries with Wolverine is how he acquired his adamantium skeleton. Well, in the early 1990’s Marvel decided to tell that story. It was a subject the Logan did not like talking about and with good reason. Weapon X is a brutal story that shows the lengths that a corrupt government will go to create a weapon. Logan was treated like nothing more than a lab experiment and the people behind his metal bones did not see him as a person but an animal. At the end of this story, you will be asking who’s the man and who is the monster.

(Image: Marvel Comics)

Wolverine: Origin

Author: Paul Jenkins

Illustrator: Andy Kubert

A defining attribute of Wolverine’s character was that his memories of his early life were gone/erased/replaced. For many years he lacked a real origin. That all changed when Origin was released. This story delves into Logan’s early childhood to his young adulthood. You get to learn where he came from, when his powers manifest, his first love, and just how old he really is. There’s been much debate of this story was ever really necessary, but it’s an interesting story that I think deserves to be read.

(Image: Marvel Comics)

Wolverine: Enemy of the State

Author: Mark Millar

Illustrator: John Romita Jr.

Enemy of the State is one of Wolverine’s biggest adventures, I will say it’s even an mini event. Wolverine becomes brain washed by Gorgon and the evil ninja clan, The Hand. Knowing how much of a risk a rogue Wolverine is, SHEILD enlists the help of Elektra, the X-Men, The Fantastic Four and many other heroes spanning the Marvel universe. Most Wolverines stories are very personal and self contained, but it’s nice to the character interact with the greater Marvel universe once and a while. If you like straight up fun adventures with super heroes, go read Enemy of the State.

(Image: Marvel Comics)

Death of Wolverine

Author: Charles Soule

Illustrator: Steve McNiven

After many years of adventures and heroics, Wolverine’s time came to an end. With the loss of his healing, Logan’s body can no longer keep up with his metal bones and is now slowly dying from adamantium poisoning. Coming to terms with his immanent death, a bounty is placed on him and he is determined to find out who put out the hit. This series explores Logan’s relationship with his past loves, his teammates and his villains. While death in comic books is never set in stone, for the time being, it is a fitting end for Wolverine.

(Image: Marvel Comics)

Wolverine: Old Man Logan

Author: Mark Millar

Illustrator: Steve McNiven

Old Man Logan is a story set in a potential future where most of the heroes and mutants are dead. Villains now rule the majority of the world, and everything is in a bad stated.Wolverine is a broken old man, just trying to live his life with his family. He’s avoided conflict and showing his claws for years. When tragedy strikes, it propels him on a journey with his old friend Hawkeye for the ride. Along the way, they run into many characters and enemies, like the hulk gang. Old Man Logan is basically the Dark Knight Returns for the character of Wolverine. A what if scenario of what happens to the future. The film Logan, opening today, is loosely based on this story. This is a story deserved to be read.

That wraps of the character spotlight of Wolverine, and what a spotlight it is. Of course this does not include every story for Wolverine, as he has so many great stories out there. This are just some of the best. The Steakhouse crew will be seeing Logan this weekend which we will give our review of the film.

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Written by Eddie Sampson

 

 

 

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