Hugh Jackman’s last turn as the mutant known as Wolverine, Logan, debuted this weekend and has been a hit on many levels. The movie made an estimated $33 million dollars on Friday and is poised to have an impressive $80 million dollar weekend. It is also the recipient of an avalanche of stellar reviews, as the James Mangold-directed feature has impressed critics and surprised comic book movie fans with an unconventional entry to the genre.
Logan managed to buck many of the conventions of superhero films, both behind and in front of the camera. After the blockbuster success of Deadpool, 20th Century Fox decided to give Mangold and Jackman (who also serves as a producer on the film) the freedom to craft a gritty, R-rated character study in place of a formulaic action movie. The result is a surprisingly introspective movie, whose lead character lives in a shockingly brutal and tactile world.
In fact, the adventures of the X-Men – and possibly the films that preceded Logan – may not have even happened… or happened the way that we remember them. That very notion is brought to life in the movie with a scene of Logan looking at Laura’s old comic based on the X-Men’s adventures and disregarding its significance. While the actual comic looks authentic, you certainly won’t find those issues at your local comic store. The art was created specifically for the movie by Marvel Comics’ legend Joe Quesada and artist Dan Panosian, by request of Mangold. Recently, Panosian took to Twitter to show off more of the interior panels that he designed for movie, some of which didn’t make the final cut.
The interior pages of the comic recreate a scene of X-Men domesticity with Cyclops, Jean Grey, Rogue, hanging out at the X-mansion while Professor X and Logan play chess. They are interrupted by Kitty Pryde, who is anxious over an upcoming visit from her parents. The comics are homages to the art style that defined the X-Men in the ’80s and ’90s, while also tipping the hat to some of the franchise’s most iconic players.
It’s significant that the cover (which appears in the movie) depicts a dynamic scene of the mutant Sauron flying into the sky with Wolverine in his clutches. However, the actual story found within the comic is much more grounded and based in reality than the exterior would suggest. This can be seen as a reflection of the actual film, which is technically a superhero movie, yet offers a hauntingly grounded look at the near future of Logan and what is left of the X-Men’s legend. Ultimately, a different panel made the final cut of the movie, however it’s fascinating to see how fully realized the world found within Logan is.
Logan is currently in theaters.