Kurt Wagner sits on the edge of heaven looking out into the ether wondering if his mission in life has truly been completed. When a swashbuckling (and rampaging) Azazel shows up collecting souls for some nefarious purpose, Kurt Wagner aka Nightcrawler finds his calling...again. Meanwhile, hormones run high at the Jean Grey School as Angelica Jones aka Firestar joins the faculty as the school's new physics teacher. Before she can even enter a classroom though, she and Hank McCoy/Beast finally stumble upon what the local population of bamfs have been up to inside the walls of the school...
With a mighty BAMF! and a hint of brimstone Nightcrawler returns to the pages of an X-Book just in time to liven up the mood after the rather depressing events of Battle of The Atom that saw Kitty Pryde join Cyclops' faction of X-Men, and abandon her position at the Jean Grey School. Marvel Comics' hottest (and best) writer, Jason Aaron, is the perfect writer to usher in the new age of Nightcrawler adventures as part of the X-Men. Once this introductory 5 part storyline, "The Quest for Nightcrawler" wraps up, Kurt Wagner will most likely fill Kitty's place at the school, and allow Aaron to tell some more great stories with the new characters (Angelica Jones/Firestar is now part of the cast too) he's getting to take out of the Marvel toy box to play with.
Speaking of playing, Aaron is going for a little more adult crowd with Amazing X-Men. While Wolverine and The X-Men focuses on the students and their trials and romances at the Jean Grey School, Amazing X-Men looks to focus more on the adventures and romances of the faculty, with an emphasis on the romance. In issue one alone we learn that Warbird is aggressively pursuing a sexual relationship with Iceman, Firestar already thinks Iceman is "hot," and Storm definitely doesn't ever want Wolverine to "skip the foreplay." Of course, all of this is revealed in the most PG way possible, but it looks like there will be plenty of romantic subplots to go along with the sci-fi ones. Hopefully though, if Aaron wants to keep the romance subplot ploy fresh, he'll focus on the Wolverine/Storm relationship as it looks like it might just be the most interesting of the many he's toying with.
Ed McGuinness was the perfect choice to team with Aaron on Amazing X-Men. His eye for detail, brilliant action choreography, and incredible grasp of anatomy are extraordinary in the sequential art world. There is little that is imaginative or edgy about his work though, and that is why he is perfect for the book. Chris Bachalo's unique, but unorthodox and unrealistic style didn't fit well at all with Aaron's tone on Wolverine and The X-Men early on. Wolverine and The X-Men and Amazing X-Men are two of Marvel Comics' highest profile books (or will be) so the characters have to be instantly recognizable and straightforward looking. McGuinness is just the artist for the job. He keeps them straightforward looking without making them boring looking at the same time.
Easily another hit in the making for Marvel Comics, Jason Aaron and Ed McGuinness' Amazing X-Men looks to be a fun ride for X-Fans everywhere. Personally, I'm even more glad to see Aaron writing yet another Marvel Comics' book. In my opinion he's the Scott Snyder of the Marvel Bullpen. Smart, just edgy enough, (when he's allowed to be), and a consummate storyteller. He should be writing even more Marvel books.