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Feb 28

Wolverine #44 annotations

Posted on Wednesday, February 28, 2024 by Paul in Annotations

As always, this post contains spoilers, and page numbers go by the digital edition.

WOLVERINE vol 7 #44
“Sabretooth War, part 4”
Writers: Benjamin Percy & Victor LaValle
Penciller: Cory Smith
Inker: Oren Junior
Colour artist: Alex Sinclair
Letterer: Cory Petit
Editor: Mark Basso

COVER / PAGE 1: Sabretooth stalks Wolverine in a graveyard full of the graves of people Wolverine loved, or at least felt responsible for. I say that because Quentin Quire makes the list, although arguably an awkward father/son relationship is intended between the two of them.

PAGE 2. The Greenhouse residents clear up after the Sabretooth Army’s attack.

The bonfire presumably contains the body parts of the people who were killed in issue #41. The lone Cuckoo next to the bonfire is Phoebe, Quentin’s ex-girlfriend, whom he brought back to the Greenhouse in X-Force #47. Other than Black Tom and Sage, the mutants inside the Greenhouse seem to be generics.

PAGES 3-5. Aurora sews up Wolverine.

She’s reattaching his hands and feet after he tore free of his bonds in issue #42. It was all rather silly. Aurora and Akihiro’s relationship was established when they were in the cast of X-Factor.

Aurora has known Wolverine long enough, from their time in Alpha Flight, that she really ought to be well aware that he has all sorts of psychological problems that his healing factor can’t sort – though she’s not on top form right now, and besides, there is an interpretation of the character where his memory gaps are ascribed to his healing factor erasing traumatic events.

She does have a point, though, that Wolverine’s idea of mourning skips the mourning bit altogether and jumps straight to the violent retribution.

PAGE 6. The “Cap” Sabretooth flees the Greenhouse.

This version of Sabretooth was apparently torn apart by the Greenhouse once its defence systems came on line at the end of issue #42; he was left for dead by Sabretooth Prime on retreating. Clearly, he wasn’t actually dead – the art was always less than emphatic on the point – and his healing factor has patched him up.

PAGE 7. Recap and credits.

PAGES 8-12. X-Force capture “Cap” Sabretooth.


PAGES 13-16. X-Force interrogate the captive Sabretooth.

Sage has had telepathic powers for years, but she’s always been a lower-tier psychic, so it does make sense that Phoebe would be more effective.

PAGES 17-19. Wolverine reflects on his history with Sabretooth.

The flashbacks show the following events:

  • Page 17 panel 3 is Logan as a restrained psychiatric patient, with Sabretooth as an orderly. This is from a flashback in Ruins of Ravenscroft: Sabretooth #1, an obscure 2020 one-shot. My guess is that it’s here because it’s the earliest meeting of Logan and Creed to be easily recognisable in a single panel flashback, although a random fight in Wolverine vol 3 #52-53 claims to be an earlier meeting.
  • Page 17 panel 4 is Creed and Logan fighting in the extended flashback in Wolverine vol 2 #10 where Silver Fox seemingly dies.
  • Page 17 panel 5 appears to be Creed and Logan in wartime; the only thing we’ve seen like this is a similarly random flashback in issue #3 of this series (where Creed is indeed wearing the same costume).
  • Page 18 panel 1 is Wolverine stabbing Sabretooth through the head in Wolverine vol 2 #90 (leading into the phase where Sabrtooth is hanging around the X-Men Mansion as a mindless pet).
  • Page 18 panel 2 is Wolverine apparently beheading Sabretooth in Wolverine vol 3 #55 (part of the notoriously dreadful “Evolution” arc). This version of Sabretooth is later retconned into a clone created by Romulus.
  • Page 18 panel 3 is Sabretooth being dragged into the Pit in House of X #6, a scene that Wolverine wasn’t actually in. Interestingly, he sees Sabretooth’s imprisonment in the Pit as something for which he bears responsibility as a part of the Krakoan establishment. That’s the original Quiet Council members in the background.

We saw Laura preparing to give her birthday present to Wolverine in issue #41. Laura was kidnapped by the Sabretooth Army at the end of issue #42, as revealed in issue #43.

PAGES 20-23. Phoebe reads “Cap” Sabretooth’s mind.

Page 20 is just a straight recap of what Creed has been up to prior to this arc.

Page 21 panel 1 is Sabretooth tormenting the Exiles (Phoebe presumably picks up the name from Cap Sabretooth’s mind) in Sabretooth #2. Unfortunately, the art wrongly includes Nanny, Orphan-Maker and Toad, who were in the Pit, but weren’t involved in these events. However, they did wind up with the Exiles eventually, and Phoebe is getting this via Cap Sabretooth (who wasn’t there either and doesn’t seem particularly bothered about accuracy), so it’s not really a problem.

On page 23, the disembodied mind of Quentin Quire is apparently saying that he’s been forced to provide psychic protection to the Sabretooth Army via the device that we saw last issue. As we saw last issue, he apparently can’t resist orders, but can act independently to do things on his own initiative.

However, Sabretooth’s base surely isn’t on Krakoa, where he tells Phoebe to go. It’s likely that this is a trap that he’s being forced to participate in, but it’s conceivabl that Quentin is just confused, because this is where Sabretooth killed his body in issue #41.

PAGE 24. Wolverine sets out alone for Krakoa.

The lesson Wolverine takes from issues #41-42 is to dump all his friends and go it alone against multiple Sabretooths. This doesn’t sound like the right lesson.

PAGE 25. Trailers. The Krakoan reads X MARKS THE SPOT.

Bring on the comments

  1. Michael says:

    “Other than Black Tom and Sage, the mutants inside the Greenhouse seem to be generics.”
    The mutant with tentacles for hands seems familiar. At first I thought it might be Zero but aside from the fact that he’s at the Limbo Embassy, it doesn’t really look like him.
    Yes, Aurora, the enmity between Logan and Daken was entirely Logan’s fault. It’s not like Daken did anything like tricking Logan into killing Daken’s siblings.
    In Duggan’s issues, Colossus is completely kill-happy. But in this story, Colossus seems to at least appreciate the value of keeping prisoners alive for interrogation.
    It’s weird that Phoebe has recovered and Wolverine and Colossus are in contact with the X-Men but we haven’t seen Emma reacting to Phoebe being okay, especially since Emma’s appearance in this week’s Iron Man takes place after this issue.Maybe Breevort’s appointment forced them to rush the end of the Krakoan Era, but still…

  2. Taibak says:

    I take it Aurora’s healing powers aren’t back?

  3. Si says:

    He got his hands and feet sewn back on? Why didn’t new ones start to grow? Why weren’t the wounds largely healed over, or alternatively, so ragged from him running around on them that reattaching is impossible? Was it like cutting off a twig to graft on a different twig?

    This whole scenario starts out dumb and gets dumber the more you think about it.

  4. Thom H. says:

    I’m jazzed that Aurora is a viable enough character again that she’s showing up in random X-books. I’m not super jazzed that she’s showing up in this one, but you take what you can get.

  5. Moonstar Dynasty says:

    Aurora’s sequence is the best moment not just of Sabretooth War but all of Percy’s run on the title. Not only did it effectively import Aurora and Akihiro’s well-developed romance from X-Factor and Marauders, but it harshly spotlighted the one, glaring, woefully underbaked aspect of Wolverine’s character: His lack of relationship with his children. How does Percy write a combined 50+ issues of Wolverine (solo title + X Lives/Deaths) and only touch on this topic twice (or do we credit LaValle for the assist on this one)? I’d be first in line for more “world’s worst dad” Wolverine stories.

  6. cil says:

    “Phoebe is getting this via Cap Sabretooth (who wasn’t there either and doesn’t seem particularly bothered about accuracy)”

    I assumed from Phoebe’s dialouge about there being more in Cap Sabertooth’s head, that there’s some sort of mind link thing going on with our Victor.

    As for Orphanmaker, Nanny, and Toad, it is a bit weird given that the last issue pointed out Toad wasn’t with the original Exiles group. On the other hand it’s implied time in the pit is weird, so they could have gotten there in time to experience some of the torment on their own without encountering the group.

  7. JDSM24 says:

    Sabretooth being a clone : it looks like current editorial is going to ignore Jeph Loeb’s self-retcon that the Sabretooth who Wolverine beheaded with the Muramasa Sword , was not the original , but a clone , in the same way that editorial ignored Mystique’s claims in her 00’s solo series that it actually was not her but an imposter who murdered Sunpyre (Sunfire’s younger sister *) and crippled Banshee [and also in the same way that Magneto has been subtly reinstated by writers such as Bendis, Soule, Hopeless, and this week , Ewing , as indeed being the Xorneto in Planet X)
    * apparently resurrected off-panel pre-Krakoa as she was last seen in the crowd scene of the One Million Mutant March in Washington DC in Uncanny XMen 600

  8. neutrino says:

    @Moonstar Dynasty:
    One of the reason he has a lack of a relation with his children is because Daken tricked him into killing them.

  9. Krzysiek Ceran says:

    @JDSM24 Ewing is not stating that Magneto actually was Xorn – he’s blaming himself for people who died through his actions or inaction, basically everyone who died through some cause and effect chain that starts with him. (See: taking the blame for Lorna’s mother’s death, caused by Lorna’s powers).

    So in the instance of Basilisk or whatever that guy’s name was, this is Magneto blaming himself for inspiring Xorn, not for being Xorn.

  10. Alexx Kay says:

    The Xorn/Magneto thing is a bit like the Jean/Phoenix thing. “I am not legally liable for that atrocity, but I have come to accept moral culpability for it.”

  11. Michael says:

    @Alexx Kay- yeah but in Jean’s case, some writers talk like she was the Phoenix, others talk like the Phoenix had a portion of her soul or a copy of her personality or whatever, so her guilt makes sense. Xorn is just a dude impersonating Magnet, so it’s not clear why Magneto should feel guilty/

  12. neutrino says:

    He felt guilty about Frenzy killing Sharon Friedlander because the former was acting in his name.

  13. JDSM24 says:

    And just what proof do we have that Planet X-Xorn WASN’T Magneto, other than the single individual Shen Xorn , not the most trustworthy of individuals? Remember we NEVER saw the insides/contents of the supposed “coffin” of Xorn , supposedly containing his alleged physical corpse , that Xavier brought with him to Genosha (Claremont’s Wxcalibur 2.0) except that it was apparently actually packed full of GUNS instead .

    And who has confirmed that Planet X Xorn WAS Magneto ?
    1) Wolverine to White Phoenix Jean (Final Form Goddess Mode) in Morrisson’s New XMen
    2) 295 Beast to 616 Beast (not contradicted at all) in Carey’s Endangered Species * Carey is another writer who apparently ignored the Austen Retcon
    3) Cyclops to Magneto himself (he admitted it) in Bendis’Uncanny X-Men
    4) Adult Jean to Teen Jean in Hopeless’ Jean Grey solo series
    5) Mosaic to the 0G Teen Five when he acquired Magneto’s own memories after possessing him in Soule’s I vs X
    6) Magneto himself in Ewing’s Resurrection of Magneto , now Max may not yet already be X-pressly comfirming that he was Xorn but NEITHER is he X-pressly denying otherwise! HAH

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