Blogger on Books Vll (2019) – Storm: Prelude to the Wedding of the Century

This Eric Jerome Dickey Storm mini-series is a novelization of Storm’s origins and her grand love with T’Challa (yes, the Black Panther).

1114563Storm Limited Series 3 of 6 Prelude to the Wedding of the Century written by Eric Jerome Dickey, penciled by David Yardin, inked by Jay Leisten, coloured by Matt Milla

detailStorm Limited Series 4 of 6 Prelude to the Wedding of the Century written by Eric Jerome Dickey, penciled by David Yardin, inked by Jay Leisten, coloured by Matt Milla

51rypho1lql__ac_ul320_sr212,320_Storm Limited Series 5 of 6 Prelude to the Wedding of the Century written by Eric Jerome Dickey, penciled by David Yardin, inked by Jay Leisten, coloured by Matt Milla

portrait_uncannyStorm Limited Series 6 of 6 Prelude to the Wedding of the Century written by Eric Jerome Dickey, penciled by David Yardin, inked by Jay Leisten, coloured by Matt Milla

It’s an episodic read (good for reading in parts but with soap opera like cliff hangers and unlike soap operas, an ending, an actual triumphant ending). I like the art. Storm is my favourite of the X-Men, and I’ve questioned before why she doesn’t already have her own movie, and reading a solid origins story for her (orphaned, adopted in to a band of thieves, discovering and being unable to manage her mutant power, being targeted by, as Shuri put it in the Black Panther movie, “colonizers”, meeting the not-yet Black Panther himself, experiencing first love and all the dangers of that, along with the very real danger of people who wish to possess her), being reminded that there’s a lot to work with there, I’ve got to press Hollywood again (as I’ve been doing with my She’s Royal series). Having been introduced to Storm, reading the comics back in my university days and watching the 90s series and later the movies, when she was already a member of and leader within the X-Men, it’s weird reading this unformed Storm (which the later movies have tried to capture) the susceptible, uncertain, insecure, irrational, and volatile Storm is fun and interesting (even if some of their lovers spats – hers and T’Challa’s – feel a bit contrived…I’m sorry but the fight is stupid…but, young love, I guess). Speaking of the lovers, yes, there is some nudity, so I know some people think comics and comic book movies are for kids but, always check the ratings, as more often than not they deal with heavier themes, and the women are almost always dressed like a male fantasy, and may even have – gasp! – nudity. This one does. Plus themes like Europeans infiltrating Africa and running over the interests and rights of the African people, class distinctions between Africans and the rough choices born of being on the lower rung, beyond stealing to survive, cold blooded murder, being a girl alone in the world  and all the dangers that come with that, being a girl anywhere in the world trying to understand the strange things happening in her body as she transitions from girl to woman…before you factor in being able to influence and ultimately harness the power of nature. There’s a lot going on. In part 6, she finally starts to realize that she has the power to command the elements, and in a life or death situation (T’Challa’s not hers) she does that, insisting (not asking) that the wind carry her and her beloved (remember this is a love story) in a well paced, well executed climax.

What did feel off to me was some of the baffling character choices – the two antagonists being their own worst enemy; and one of the areas I do wish had been explored more (but this isn’t her story) was the motivations of the rage-filled daughter of Storm’s mentor who hurts herself more than anyone (she’s a complex character whom I can’t help but feeling bad for as her jealousy and hate are born of feeling unloved and undervalued, not special). The thing she has in common with the two white antagonists (two brothers, men to whom Africans aren’t real people, who take what they want and what they want is Ororo and the power she possesses) is the way hate can make you illogical.

The reason why I don’t mention Parts 1 and 2 in the list above is because I read those in 2018, but the narrative discussed is continuous from 1 to 6. It’s got layers throughout – e.g. the African collaborator selling out his own people for his own reasons, it’s got action (each book ending on a cliffhanger), it’s got larger themes, but at it’s core the boy-meets-girl-bickers-with-girl-cant-live-without-girl through line.  A good read, especially for me given that I am a Storm lover.

The main page of my Blogger on Books Vll can be found here.  Other pages are sub-linked from there. To check out my books and see what reviewers and readers have been saying about them, go here and here.