Now is time for Comics Questions, questions about comics. What that, I hear? There’s a new movie just out based on Old Man Logan? And people may not know what that story is about? Well, then, sit down and let me tell you a tale. A tale of the Wastelands.
“Old Man Logan” was an eight-issue storyline that lasted from Wolverine vol 3 #66 through 72, with a concluding issue called Giant-Sized Wolverine: Old Man Logan #1. It was written by Mark Millar, with art by Steve McNiven and it portrayed Wolverine living fifty years into the Marvel universe’s future, in a post-apocalyptic landscape called the Wastelands.
Between the current day and fifty years from now, as the book explains, there came a point in time when all of the supervillains banded together, rose up, and killed the superheroes. Then the villains carved out the United States into different territories — Logan, who is now pretty much a pacifist and refuses to pop his claws, lives in what used to be Sacramento and is now “Hulkland.” (Bruce Banner eventually went crazy from the Gamma radiation and is now a villain.) However, he’s having trouble paying his rent to his landlords (the Hulk Gang), so when an old Hawkeye visits and says he can make some quick cash by delivering some contraband across country, he leaves his wife Maureen, son Scotty, and daughter Jade behind to go on a cross-country road trip...in the Spider-Buggy. Yes, it’s pretty much Unforgiven but with Logan
As you might notice, there is a lot of references to the Marvel universe. So, quite obviously, the movie could use none of this. Still, it’s an interesting (if extremely cynical) look at a dystopian Marvel future, one where Logan has become old and only wants to be left alone. This is what the movie preserves: the character of Logan, even if it replaces everything else.
But, of course, this isn’t the end of Old Man Logan, nope.
During Secret Wars, Doom assembled a patchwork planet called Battleworld, put together from various alternate Earths. One of them was, of course, the Wastelands and so there was a four-issue mini-series, written by Brian Michael Bendis and illustrated by Andrea Sorrentino, called Old Man Logan.
Basically, it begins where the previous storyline ended, except suddenly Logan sees an Ultron head fall from the sky and realizes that his world is actually much bigger than he realized.
From there, he finds the wall to the next territory on Battleworld and ends up accidentally going on a trip throughout Battleworld, from territory to territory, until he arrives at the big, final battle against Doom.
And then, somehow, ends up in the main Marvel universe.
The second volume of Old Man Logan, written by Jeff Lemire with art again by Andrea Sorrentino, found him struggling to find his way in the current Marvel universe. The book was now on-going and Logan himself was even made a part of the Extraordinary X-Men. In fact, the book will continue on past the ResurXion event, with a new writter, Ed Brisson, and artist, Mike Deodato, Jr.
The first storyline found Logan realizing that now that he was in his relative past, he could find a way to change things and make it to the villain uprising never happened. But several complications along the way show him that perhaps this isn’t his past at all, but something else completely.
While the main Marvel universe Logan has been dead since 2014, both Old Man Logan and Laura Kinney in All-New Wolverine have taken up his slack. Her stories tend to be a bit lighter, although there is still a great deal of killing, while his deal a lot with flashbacks to his past in the Wastelands. Still, both books are extremely good and I recommend them. Even if they very little to do with the movie Logan.