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Sherlock Holmes and Professor Moriarty. Link and Ganon. Spider-Man and Venom. You get what’s happening. There’s nothing like a good arch-nemesis to keep a hero on his or her toes, to keep them questioning the nature of who they are and why they move the way they do. For every yang, there is a yin. It is the other side of one coin and in the constant struggle to separate the sides, it is often found that there is a silver lining that keeps our hero hopeful that they haven’t fallen into darkness.
The Marvel Knights Animated feature Wolverine vs Sabretooth is all about one of the greatest rivalries in Marvel Comics history. It felt like a breath of fresh air to experience. You get exactly what you expect and maybe some of what you didn’t. The battle scenes are larger than life and quite graphic, which is what one wants from a tale pitting two such titans against one another. However, it isn’t all about claws, blood and death. There is also room for Logan to do some soul searching, there’s space for a brief course on a new theory of evolution and there are some really classic appearances from some members of the X-Men, which doesn’t hurt a thing.
Fans of the Wolverine character will no doubt be satisfied by what they see here. The artwork by Italian artist Simone Bianchi, is breathtaking, lively and rich. The cinematic eye of the always amazing Jeph Loeb, who penned the deep and psychological piece, is present and sharp in the writing. The dialogue is mostly strong and the tight ideas and backstory carefully crafted give the film a great deal of meat for viewers to chew on. This film is one example of how fantastic a partnership between a writer and artist can be.
One of the things that’s so fascinating about a character like Logan, is that he is a man constantly struggling against his own animalism, he’s always trying to not lose himself to his feral side. Put him on the opposite end of someone like Victor Creed, who not only fully gives into, but delights in that animalistic nature, and you’ve got a recipe for a thrilling and dramatic story, which this is. Logan generally isn’t afraid of much, right? However, I would say that if he’s afraid of anything, suggested or otherwise, it would be becoming Sabretooth, which is the thread that ties this story and the two characters together.
Over the years, there have been a lot of different stories done that attempt to present a “definitive” narrative about the nature of the relationship between Sabretooth and Wolverine. Are they brothers? Father and son? What? Does it matter? There is some offering of an answer here, but any way you slice it (pun intended), this emotionally gripping story is a fun experience. Which is saying something for me, because generally animated comic films I feel are just good. However, this one was great in my opinion and if you’re a comic fan, I say definitely catch this one. You won’t regret it.