Wolverine: The Long Night #1
The Story So Far:
Wolverine: The Long Night #1 has finally arrived. Last year, at New York Comic Con 2018, it was announced that Marvel’s hit Wolverine: The Long Night podcast would change mediums. The pure audio tale would receive an official comic adaptation. January 1 kicked 2018 to the curb and January 2 gave us Wolverine: The Long Night #1. So far, it’s been a good year.
Written by Benjamin Percy Art by Marcio Takara Cover by Rafael Albuquerque
Issue Rating: 5/5
I like digital comics but it’s no secret that I still favor the physical copies over pure digital. I’ve even been known to buy a digital copy and like it so much that I buy a physical version as well. Rafael Albuquerque’s cover art on Wolverine: The Long Night #1 is the type of art that makes me insist on having a physical issue. While I’m not the kind to judge a book by its cover, I am the type to buy a book for its cover.
The cover of Wolverine: The Long Night #1 captures all the most Wolverine-esque elements, then spins them into the perfect cover for a dark tale of murder, and mystery. From the grizzled image of Logan standing stoic and alone, to the icy wind and snow blowing about, to the blood-stained snow screaming from an otherwise silent palette, this cover sets exactly the right tone for the story within.
From MAJK’s Coffee Corner:
Wolverine: The Long Night #1 is a strong first issue that follows the podcast script closely but it varies enough to be interesting and worth the read. The story follows Special Agents Sally Pierce and Tad Marshal as they investigate a string of mysterious deaths in Burns, Alaska.
If you are not the kind sensitive to spoilers, and you don’t fall asleep during audio books, then you may want to check out the podcast. If you hate spoilers and prefer visual medium to audio then:
- Stop reading this article until you have read Wolverine: The Long Night #1.
- Hit your LCBS right away for a copy or grab yourself a digital copy before you head over to check out the podcast.
Either way, I do recommend both versions. The voice acting is some of the best work I’ve heard to date on the podcast and the visuals in the comic are really stunning and effective.
Spoiler Warning: If you have not read Wolverine: The Long Night #1 There May Be Spoilers Below
Mystery and Murder
Benjamin Percy, who wrote the original podcast script, brings the same story to life. We open with two federal agents, Sally Pierce and Tad Marshall, interviewing an aging fisherman from Burns, Alaska. The subject of the interview is a pile of dead bodies the old man found on a free-floating vessel that appeared out of a fog bank early that morning.
The story has all the makings of an excellent murder mystery: suspense, clues, rumors, dark secrets, and even a creepy cult broadcast. The sense of tension and dread is well crafted. You can almost hear the eerie background music that would be playing if this were a movie. This is the stuff of old-fashioned ghost stories and urban legends around the campfire at midnight. It’s great, it’s creepy, and it’s very engaging. I can hardly wait for the next issue.
Everybody’s Got Secrets
As Pierce and Marshall investigate, each of the townsfolk they chat with give bits and pieces of information. The old fisherman reveals there were two other deaths prior to the nine found dead on the boat. The coroner mentions that the nine dead fishermen don’t appear to have fought back or had time to fight back, and when asked about the two women she mentions that there wasn’t much left to examine.
The local Sheriff is less than accommodating. He makes it clear that he’s only cooperating because he has to and isn’t fond of interlopers. He insists the two dead women were bear attacks and are in no way related to the nine bodies found on the boat. His Deputy Bobby, on the other hand, is more than willing to help Pierce and Marshall get the lay of the land and in fact has a few moments where he is a bit too chatty.
An interview with the only remaining deckhand, Steven Washburn, reveals the tale of a mysterious stranger and a fishing accident. The tale of a man who saved a life but paid by revealing his secret. That man, named Logan, is now suspected to be the cause of the death haunting Burns.
Pierce and Marshall decide to check out this mystery man’s current residence but what they find when they arrive will have to wait until the next issue. This issue closes with the federal agents arriving at the residence to encounter a silent grisly scene.
As I said earlier, even if you have listened to the podcast this series is worth owning. If the art in this first issue is anything to judge by we are in for some gorgeous and possibly terrifying visuals. Marcio Takara and Matt Milla capture the beauty of Alaskan landscapes pairing serene and majestic landscapes with a feeling of dread. Throughout this issue, the environment is stunning. The mountains are sharp and punctuated here and there by a lush green of unspoiled forests. Even Special Agent Marshall remarks on the beauty.
The transitions from these gloriously scenic panels to the darker, grim imagery in the flashbacks of the old fishing boat, the filth of Washburn’s apartment, the frantic incident with Logan and the seaman, and even the grisly murder scenes are handled smoothly. An impressive feat given the range of atmosphere in this first issue.
MAJK’s Age Recommendation:
Marvel’s age recommendation for Wolverine: The Long Night #1 is 12+ years of age. I generally agree with most of Marvel’s recommendations. This time, however, due to some of the grisly imagery, nature of the gore, and the overall feel of this series; I’m going to recommend 16 or 17+.
Please keep in mind this is just my general guideline as a parent. I tend to keep it more conservative to prevent nightmares and anxiety for children. Each child is an individual and some mature faster than others. I recommend parents review Wolverine: The Long Night #1 themselves and decide if it is appropriate for their child.
Important Note: If you are the squeamish type when it comes to blood or are prone to nightmares then you may want to reconsider this comic. The story itself is creepy and tension is very well done but please be aware that there are graphic images of injuries in this issue, including dismemberment, open wounds, and corpses. This may not be a good comic for people with heightened sensitivities.
Next Issue: Wolverine: The Long Night #2 will be available on February 6, 2019.