Who's in this issue?
Very philosophical, very wordy ... that's my initial impression of this book. If you're looking for action? Don't look here, unless you exclude Wolverine's one stint with that elk (who gets the upper hand on Logan). Chuck Moss being a mutant of some type? Hard to say. We don't see him do anything extraordinary within this issue except at the very end where he seems to befriend even nature's wild beasts (that elk). We do know, however, that he is most likely a Native American, judging by Shaman's conversation with Chuck about Chuck's father "...and his tribal obligation to nominate you for training..." And, I have this sense that either the writer or the artist from this book must be a big Edmonton Oilers fan, for I really can't think of any other reason as to why the artist or writer would choose the Oilers as the hockey team's shirt that Chuck would be wearing. (Either that, or the creative team's really making a desparate attempt to make the reader aware that the characters are in Canada ...)
There's nothing really spectacular about this issue; as the previous issue had hinted, the primary story of this book is Wolverine training Shaman's protege, Chuck Moss, and to guide him on the right path of a warrior. Logan does more talking than anything in this issue; there's some fighting, but it's more of a spar between himself and Chuck for training purposes only. So, asides from a pretty neat cover artwork by Andy Kubert and some good artwork by artist Jorge Lucas (who seems to draw a very Leinil Francis Yu-like Wolverine, as seen on page 13), this issue just merely wraps up what had occurred in Wolverine #179. This also leads me to wonder just what direction this title is heading, for the last few story arcs have been very short, and very non-linear. When are we going to see some better stories that lasts for more than 2-3 issues, or at least have some story arcs which may tie each story arc to one another? These last few story arcs to me seems to be nothing more than "filler material" for this title at best ... nothing that really develops Wolverine as a character (with the exception of Wolverine #176.
Rating (from 1 dot (not recommended) to 5 dot (highly recommended)
IN THIS ISSUE:
Somewhere out in Prince George, British Columbia, Canada, where Shaman is seen talking with Chuck Moss, to let Chuck make the decision of whether he wanted to continue on the path that Shaman, himself, had taken when he was his age, and would leave it up to Logan to see to it that Chuck is convinced that "when you are no longer at odds with this world you will understand there is no occasion for fear, doubt ... or regret", for only then will his totem be revealed.
Much later, somewhere in the Canadian wilderness, Logan had taken on the responsibility of training Chuck about all that Shaman had said. In his initial lessons to Chuck, Logan tells him that:
Going deeper into the forest, Logan points out a elk, and explains to Shaman how he had learned what he was going to show him. Logan stealthly sneaks up to capture the elk, only to step on a twig. Hearing that sound, the elk instantly kicks back, sending Logan flying to the ground, bloodied and unconscious. Chuck flees back to their car to get help, only to discover that Logan had beat him there and had healed completely. Chuck asks how Logan got so close to the elk, and that only in legends has he heard of people being able to get so close. In response, Logan gave his next lesson to Chuck, by telling him of how everything relates. Having a difficult time trying to explain it, Logan draws out a set of sparring stick and begins to spar with Chuck. Hours later, with Chuck exhausted, Chuck asks for a break, but Logan doesn't give in and knocks Chuck to the ground, telling him that "Shaman expects me to prepare you for a world that wants to eat you alive! Can't go callin' 'Time Out' in combat, damn it!"
As night falls, Logan leads Chuck deeper into the woods. To cross a canyon with a river below, Logan cuts down a tree and walks across it. Chuck hesistates, saying that he wasn't good with heights and was worried about the wind that was blowing. Chuck gingerly walks across the bridge, only to loose his footing when a strong gust of wind blows him off. With Chck hanging by an arm on the wood, Logan manages to pull him back up, and forces Chuck to wear a blindfold this time to cross the makeshift bridge, to make Chuck control his fear, center himself on the tree trunk bridge, and allow his own senses to guide him across the bridge. Chuck makes it across.
Much later, in the midst of the night, Logan is seen by a campfire near a cave. Inside, Chuck had his hand in the ground, wondering why he had to do it just to figure out his totem even though Shaman said he had to stain there until whatever Chuck's reason for being there was done. From inside, he suddenly sees many pairs of eyes looking at him. Screaming for help from Logan, Logan refuses. Chuck appears to be surrounded by giant bears. As he disappears beneath the shadows of the beasts, we suddenly see that it is next day, and Logan was waking Chuck up. Pulling his hand out of the ground, Chuck sees in his hand an earthworm. Logan guesses that the significance of the worm was Chuck's totem. Logan tells Chuck that from what he's heard, the significance of a worm was that he (Chuck) was an earthmover. He leaves Chuck to eat breakfast as he tells Chuck he had some unfinished business to tend to.
Back in the forest, Logan looks for, and finds, the elk that had eluded him. He sneaks up towards the elk, only to stop dead in his track at what he saw. What he saw was the elk, and a hand on the elk ... the hand being Chuck's hand. Somehow, Chuck had learned from Logan the ability to sneak up to the elk, and he took it one step further by placing his hand on the elk (which didn't seem to be afraid). Logan comments to Chuck that "...you're gonna do just fine ..."