Wolverine Origins #40: Writer- Daniel Way Art- Scot Eaton
What Happened: With Wolverine and Romulus finally coming face to face last issue, what do you think happened!?! They fought... A lot! Wolvie kept trying to strike Romulus with the muramasa blade, the only weapon the could conceivably kill Romulus, but Romulus continued to dodge the blade swipes, eventually disarming Wolvie. With the sword gone Wolvie pops the claws and the two literally tear into each other. Romulus explains to Wolvie that he was behind all of Wolvie's training throughout his life and that he was eventually grooming Wolverine to become his eventual replacement. However, now Romulus feels Wolvie has become too soft, and that Daken may be the better choice as Romulus' eventual replacement. The mention of his son re-energizes Wolvie and he strikes back twice as hard as before at Romulus, knocking one of Romulus' gloves off, revealing that his claws were artificial and a part of the gloves. This revelation causes Wolverine to realize that it's not that Romulus wants Wolvie to take his place, the truth of the matter is that Romulus always wanted to be Wolvie. Upon hearing this comment, Romulus flies into a rage and gets gutted by Wolvie. Wolvie goes in to finish Romulus off, but is stung when Romulus tells Wolvie that the moment he is killed, Wolvie will be taking his place at the top of the food chain and that everybody, including Wolvie's ruthless son, will be gunning for Logan. Wolvie decides that he can't kill Romulus yet, since he doesn't want to deal with the inevitable confrontation with Daken which is what Romulus' death would spark. Wolvie warns Romulus that he plans on taking apart everything he's built before he turns to leave. Romulus takes the muramasa blade and throws it at Wolvie, knocking him out with the handle of the blade. Romulus takes the blade and runs his finger along it, realizing that the blade retards healing factors. Romulus then tosses the blade on top of the unconscious Wolverine, telling him to keep the blade since he'll need it, before he walks away, ending this issue.
What I thought: Well, that was somewhat anti-climatic... So Wolverine has been hunting for Romulus for almost three years now(ever since his full set of memories returned after the House of M), he finally finds Romulus, defeats him in battle, and then DOESN'T deliver the killing blow?!? Wha??? Hasn't Marvel basically rewritten Wolverine's history so that every terrible thing that has occurred in Wolvie's life had occurred because of Romulus? I mean really, nowadays it's like if Wolvie stubs his toe somehow it's Romulus' fault. With that said I find it totally unbelievable that Wolvie allowed Romulus to survive their encounter. While I enjoyed the battle sequences and dialogue in this story, the ending fell totally flat to me.
Score: 7 out of 10.Say what you will about the story, but Romulus has an awesome look!