Wolverine: Weapon X

Wolverine: Weapon X picture394 Pages
Written by Marc Cerasini


Back in the 1980’s I was a huge comic fan. I particularly liked fantasy and science fiction. At my parents’ house are several crates of mylar wrapped comics – titles like The Warlord, Doctor Strange, Moon Knight, Wolverine, Batman, etc…

Every so often I check out the local comic book shop to see what’s new. Occasionally, I buy something. A while back, I picked up the 2003 graphic novel combining issues #1-6 of Wolverine’s origin and enjoyed it.

This novel concentrates on Wolverine’s capture and involvement in a top-secret experiment that resulted in his adamantium skeleton as well as his memory loss.

From what I can gather, this is actually an adaptation of Barry Windsor-Smith’s graphic novel, Weapon X, which I haven’t read.

Unfortunately, the novel still feels like a graphic novel. I like graphic novels and picking up new details from the Wolverine saga, but I expect a little bit more from a novel.

Cerasini co-created a series with Tom Clancy and he has a flair for the lingo and detail of military special operations, however, instead of enlarging upon the mythology and fleshing it out, his goal seems to have been to convert what was already there to prose form.

For much of the novel Wolverine is comatose or having flashbacks. The flashbacks mostly focus on a covert operation in North Korea and really don’t add much. They seemed disjointed and thrown in to give us a breather from the main story of Wolverine’s transformation.

Also, the characterization of the doctors working on the experiment was a bit too contrived. Two of them went through traumatic childhood experiences and the third was falsely accused of the murder of his wife and child. These backstories seemed designed to explain away their involvement in such an evil experiment, but the writing is heavy-handed, and you never really feel empathy for any of them.

Despite this, there are some very enjoyable passages and I recommend this book for Wolverine fans. The description of how nanotechnology was permanently infused into Wolverine’s bones to allow them to “breathe” beneath the adamantium surface makes science sense, and the basic premise, which mirrors Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein makes for good light reading.


We are introduced to Wolverine back when he was just known as Logan. At this point, Logan is just a drunk trying to forget about his time spent as a covert operative.

A special black-ops unit of the Canadian Government run by a never seen character named The Director, has chosen Logan as a guinea pig for a new experiment designed to create super soldiers by fusing adamantium alloy onto their bones, then brain-washing them to be obedient killing machines.

The leader of the project, The Professor, is described as an evil Einstein and has pioneered the use of the adamantium metal which is very unstable. To help him, he has enlisted the aid of Dr. Cornelius, a nanotechnology expert, and Ms. Hines, a former NASA operative who has training in mind control technology.

*There is no mention of William Stryker who was the lead scientist in the film X2.

A team of men kidnap Logan as he drunkenly leaves a bar, then spirit him into an underground complex where his transformation takes place.

Apparently, however, The Director picked Logan as the first human test without letting anybody know he was a mutant. They prep Logan by shaving his head, but when the hair grows back almost immediately they don’t pay much attention.

After some complications from his mutant body which quickly processes their drugs and mends itself against intrusion, they are able to complete the adamantium coating rather quickly. His claws come as a second surprise, however!

They then use mind control and run a series of tests on him, letting him carve up local wildlife – starving wolves, mountain lions, bears, etc…


It’s really not much of a mystery that Wolverine gets away in the end. He kills everyone who’s tortured him – going through a metal smelter (a la Terminator 2) where he comes back looking like a twisted cyborg to finish off The Professor. The twist is, that in the end, it proves to have been a dream resulting from Ms. Hines’s mind control machine. Then, once we realize it was a dream, Hines explains that sometimes dreams from the device turn out to be prophecies in disguise. She tells a little story about the device’s trial run at NASA with a distinct urban legend feel to it.

As if he was eavesdropping, Wolverine immediately escapes and kills everyone, although less elaborately than he did in the dream.