Wolverine By Claremont & Miller by Chris Claremont
Illustrated By: Frank Miller, Paul Smith
Format: Trade Paperback Comic
Collects: Wolverine #1-4, Uncanny X-Men #172-173
Originally Published: 1982/1983
As a short, angry, hairy Canadian, I’ve always felt a special kinship with Wolverine. If there was ever a superhero I could relate to, it’s him. And if it wasn’t him, it might have to be Puck, and that would just be sad.
I’m the best there is in what I do. But what I do best isn’t very nice.
Wolverine had been part of the X-Men for six or seven years at this point, but this was the first solo title run for the character. It’s written by Chris Claremont, X-Men writer of the 70s to 90s, and the four Wolverine issues are illustrated by Sin City’s Frank Miller. Apparently up until this point, Wolverine was a very one-dimensional ball of anger with claws. Miller urged Claremont to give the character a little depth, and they teamed up in this to do just that.
In the story, Wolverine’s girl has been summoned back to her native Japan for an arranged marriage, and he travels back there to brood and call people bub and stab things. It’s actually a fun story, although it goes a little wonky when it transitions into the Uncanny X-Men issues. It’s a shame Frank Miller wasn’t writing this, instead of just illustrating, as you could see his influence on Claremont’s writing and how that basically got dropped once he was off the book. It’s a little heavy on the exposition, but not nearly as bad as many older comics.
The early Miller art was great and still holds up quite well. Worth reading if you’re a Wolverine fan.