Savage Wolverine was described to me thusly:
It’s amazing. It has Wolverine talking to elephants!
So despite the fairly grim cover, I was expecting a bit of a romp – maybe Wolverine would hang out with elephants, cause havoc and get bad guys? I was wrong.
I enjoy the X-Men but don’t read an awful lot, so I had no idea that Wolverine could actually speak to and understand animals (perhaps it’s just elephants), or why. In any case, Wolverine is in Madripoor, the fictional, crime-ridden island that at one point was run by his son Daken, and is now run by TygerTiger. Elephants and various other animals are being slaughtered.
This issue, the second and last part of Savage Wolverine arc ‘Come Conquer The Beasts’, serves as a way to raise awareness about poaching. Most people would agree that slaughtering elephants and other endangered creatures isn’t exactly the “right” thing to do. Savage Wolverine #13 really hammers the point home – Cypher says that the elephants “in their way, they are the spiritual guardians of their land,” while Quentin Quire has a little spiel about the humanity of elephants.
Of course, things aren’t completely black and white, as TygerTiger points out: she has managed to clean up the island’s crime problems: drugs, gun running, slavery and child prostitution among them, but at a cost.
The art (Jimenez, Palmer, Florea, Olliffe & Green) is gorgeous, with a beautiful colour palette primarily comprised of blues and oranges. Savage Wolverine #13 tackles an important topic, and one that I think deserves more attention. This issue has a good go at it, but ultimately falls short, coming off as a little trite.