A greatest hits collection of stories featuring the clawed Canadian

(Panini Books)

RELEASED in perfect time to make the most of the hype surrounding the new movie, this is a diverse collection of stories plucked from throughout the long history of the ever-popular X-Man, released under the umbrella title of Marvel Platinum which is given to these top-end compilations.

Panini have been putting together similar volumes to coincide with other Marvel movies released in recent years, and they do a damn fine job in choosing a mix between little-seen gems and long-established classics, meaning there’s always something worth reading for fans old and new alike.

There’s a roll call of comics talent on display here as well, including the likes of Chris Claremont, Alan Davis, Larry Hama, Jim Lee, Howard Chaykin and John Buscema, all pumping out material at the very peak of their game.

Highlights here include the two-part story of Logan’s planned wedding to Japanese clan leader Mariko, his subsequent efforts to free Clan Yashida from the influence of the ninja cult known as The Hand, and one of his earliest clashes with his arch enemy Wolverine, together with assorted other stories from almost four decades of Logan’s publication history.

The selection of tales chosen here reflect the themes and characters seen in this summer’s blockbuster sequel, The Wolverine, so we have the likes of Viper and Silver Samurai popping up, as well as a predisposition to stories set in the Far East. But with a character as rich in history as Logan, there’s nothing wrong with seeing this part of his world reflected in depth.

With some of the chosen issues segments of longer epics, there is a need to recap on events so far, and if there is any criticism of this book it’s that this gives more of a pick and mix feel than a selection of self-contained stories would have seen.

However, that’s not to say that this isn’t a highly recommended compilation of superhero comics featuring one of the genre’s all-time great creations, and it continues Panini’s tradition for quality which we’ve seen in previous Marvel Platinum releases.