Tim Greene’s pencils really fall short here in an issue where not much is expanded on except Hope’s sudden assertion that she’s a bad-ass. Asmus credibly lends to the tension with Hope and Emma with a much anticipated showdown and loose tongue from Hope, and this builds well to their rapport. It’s nice to see Emma literally strike back as she’s been in fear of Hope since Messiah War. Their views on each other are obscure and this makes the arc with Hope demanding Scott grant her wishes to enlist Shaw. Recruiting and training on her own seems far-fetched and just a way of Scott keeping her on a leash but there’s a scary panel where we see just why she truly is a force to be reckoned
with, more so for the Avengers to contend with. It isn’t consistent how strong she’s portrayed but with AvX looming, it’s not a shocker to see her being moved up in the strength ranks.
The impending Phoenix Force drama does steal from the final page and the internal issues with Kenji and Velocidad as this book’s self-containted tenure seems to be expending. Shame because I like Asmus and would like to see where he takes this team post-Gillen, with a better artist in tandem. However, that’s not going to happen with X-Sanction and AvX dictating the pace. (7/10)