Wolverine is finally returning to Marvel Comics - and he's doing it in a brand new costume. Which is bad news for fans of the classic yellow Wolvie suit, or even his brown and tan X-Men uniform. Because the new look brings Logan... back in black.
The first official glimpse of the new Return of Wolverine costume arrives with news that its creator, Declan Shalvey, has joined the art team for the long awaited comic series. But for those Marvel fans who expected something different for Logan's new suit, you may want to hold off on your complaints. Because just like Wolverine's new ability to superheat his claws, the black suit he's sporting in Return of Wolverine is guaranteed to be part of a larger story.
After years of believing him truly dead, Wolverine secretly returned to the Marvel universe - dressed in nothing special, just a pair of jeans and an undershirt (a nice nod to Hugh Jackman, who never got to wear a comic costume in his Wolverine films). But with countless tie-ins and comic miniseries all leading to the full blown Return of Wolverine, street clothes just won't do.
Take a look at how Declan Shalvey is dressing Logan for the ball, in his newly revealed variant cover for Return of Wolverine #2 below:
This isn't the first time that Wolverine has somewhat adopted a black and red color scheme, with Jerome Opeña dressing Logan all in black for his X-Force adventures, and Logan's son Daken donning a crimson Wolverine costume as well. But the tunic-like, triple-buttoned top, paired with separate gloves and lack of a cowl is sure to divide fans (like all new superhero costumes do).
The hint of an actual Wolverine 'logo' on his belt buckle may enrage those less inclined to change - but fear not, Logan enthusiasts. As Shalvey explains in an interview with This Week in Marvel, calling this clothing "a Wolverine costume" may give people the wrong idea, considering the context in which it's adopted:
The first thing I did when I took on the gig was design a new costume for Logan. It's not a Wolverine costume, I should say. It's not designed for Wolverine, it's basically something he finds. I had all these different versions that were way more Wolverine-y. But again, sometimes the inner adolescent guy wants to do the thing that they know. So you want to just draw the costume that you know, and shoehorn it in. But as somebody who actually does this professionally you have to serve the story first. It's a weird balance to find, but I think I got it.
With the revelation that this uniform wasn't made for Logan to wear, the obvious question becomes: who was it designed for? It won't easily fit another typical superhero, since Shalvey emphasizes his desire to return Logan to his classic, short, stocky, feral physique. But learning the answer to that riddle is clearly going to be part of the fun of reading the Return of Wolverine when it releases. So for those who are intrigued by the new design, it's insignia, or it's color scheme, there's hope Wolverine will still adopt it as his new look.
For those less than impressed, the variety of variant covers for Return of Wolverine #1 may be more of what you're after. Artist Steve McNiven will hand the reins to Shalvey for Issues #2-4, but has pumped out covers for the first issue depicting Wolverine's glorious return in several suits. His classic blue and yellow, earthy brown and tan, and even his wild Age of Apocalypse makeover. None of them may stick around once his Return concludes, but... with McNiven drawing them, they don't need to. Oh, and there are more than a dozen other acclaimed artists providing their own renditions of everyone's favorite feral fighter, too.
Whatever this first glimpse of Wolverine's 'Black' Costume may mean for the larger narrative, one thing is for sure: writer Charles Soule couldn't be happier to have Shalvey helping to cap off his and McNiven's trilogy - beginning with Death of Wolverine, following in the current Hunt For Wolverine, and finally the hero's true return:
I've wanted to work with Declan Shalvey forever—you can ask him! I've talked to him a million times about telling a story together. The timing's never worked out, until now, for RETURN OF WOLVERINE, and I think it's great he's come aboard. He did a new design for one of Logan's outfits in the story that I love, and he'll get to choreograph a massive battle sequence with the X-Men, too. Declan's wonderful, and he'll do a hell of a job.
Return of Wolverine #1 will be available from Marvel Comics on September 19th, 2018.