Friday, 13 September 2013
KPW #3: "Death"
(The space between us.)
We're now halfway through this mini-series, and as Logan heads for his rendezvous with Kitty only to find it's a trap with her serving as both bait and blade, our focus remains on figuring out what makes this title dare to believe it deserves to exist.
After three issues, something along those lines does indeed seem to be forming, The key observation here is that sixty-plus pages in, Kitty and Logan have still yet to talk to each other (yes, Logan answered Kitty's trans-continental phone call, but she hung up immediately). This is a story about two characters interacting without an interface.
The result is interesting. The two characters are essentially sketched out by the absence of the other. This is not always a wise approach, hence why it's a relief this series can't be subtitled "Mooning Over Colossus", but it seems to work perfectly well here. In part, that's because the relationship between Kitty and Logan is sufficiently complicated and interesting - note how it's still being explored almost thirty years later - that it can withstand being deconstructed in this way. It heightens both Sprite's vulnerability and Logan's disassociation from the world.
Admittedly, the former is less interesting than the latter. There's a lovely line in particular here about how Wolverine's general dislike of cities doesn't apply to Tokyo because he understands what its doing, because its attempt to generate order from chaos mirrors his own internal struggle. Not an attempt to replace the chaos, so much as to compartmentalise it to the point where it no longer reigns supreme.
(One almost sure-fire way of doing this, by the way, is to become a parent, or at least so it seems to this childless writer. Having children doesn't require that the mad, scrambling, explosive rush of youth be discarded, merely that it be set aside until a reliable babysitter is found. So, anyone know of somebody who could fulfil that role for Wolverine?)
As for Kitty's vulnerability, well, it doesn't look much like that's going to be an issue for a while, does it? Under Ogun's tutelage/mind control, she's become an assassin lethal enough to take down the mighty Wolverine himself, stabbing him through the chest in a manner that I'm sure would be very concerning were we not well aware of his healing factor. Then again, Logan is somewhat off his game, made vulnerable by, I assume, his concern for Kitty.
This means our two title characters are not merely defined by their separation, but also by how that separation had led to them becoming more like each other. That close couples (platonic or otherwise) tend towards a central point is an obvious realisation, of course, but it's interesting to see it here in this strange half-separated situation. I'm not sure it fully works - the outside pressure and compressed time involved in ninjafying Kitty cuts against my reading of the comic's intent - but it does give us a plausible hook for the second half of the series.
This issue takes place over a single night. Logan states that this is the night after Kitty tried to swipe money from a cash machine, but this is flatly impossible unless both Wolverine's flight and Ogun's ninja brainwash process both take no more than a couple of hours. We'll therefore place this story the day after KPW #2 concludes.
Monday 6th February, 1984.
Euro Tunnel is given the grant to build the... well, you can guess, I'm sure.
"I've always loved [this temple's] garden, the elegant simplicity of the pattern formed by the arrangement of rocks and stones... creating harmony from diversity, order from chaos.
A man's spirit, it's said, can be shaped the same way..."