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By Jim Beard
Wolverine may be the poster boy for ferocity and tenacity and he's got the claws to prove it, but there's another denizen of the Marvel Universe who matches the mutant in growling and gritting of teeth.
This December 24, WOLVERINE: FIRST CLASS #10 opens the door to Werewolf by Night and invites him in for a bite.
"Wolverine gets bitten by a werewolf," teases writer Fred Van Lente of the tale. "Do mutant healing factors work on lycanthropy? We'll find out..."
WOLVERINE: FIRST CLASS explores an earlier time for Logan, one that examines not only his growing relationship with the X-Men but also his place in the Marvel Universe. Recent issues have spotlighted such diverse guest-stars as the Soviet Super-Soldiers and Shang-Chi, Master of Kung Fu. Van Lente has found himself excited by the title and of its playground of possibilities.
"When I first tried to wrap my brain around the idea of an all-ages Wolverine series, I started thinking about Wolverine as a werewolf, a sympathetic monster with a bestial rage he has to somehow keep under control," he shares. "In my neverending quest to let water find its own path when coming up with stories, it occurred to me, 'Why not explore
what would happen if Logan actually became
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Thus the impending clash of teeth and claws in WOLVERINE: FIRST CLASS #10, wherein both characters stumble upon a common crossroads.
"Jack Russell has come to some degree of peace with his curse, and journeys to the woods of Southern Illinois to find a werewolf pack he's heard roams there, so he might join it," says Van Lente. "Wolverine is in the same woods too, training Kitty Pryde in wilderness survival, thus setting up a prime opportunity for their paths to cross."
Though unaware of each other's existence before the story unfolds, Wolverine may feel a kinship with another individual who struggles under a cursed existence.
"Yet that curse may free Logan from a lot of the burdens of his life as an X-Man, and make it rather tempting for him," Van Lente notes.
When asked to compare and contrast the agility, abilities, and highly-tuned senses of Wolverine and the lycanthrope, the writer would only comment that "Logan smells slightly better."
Considering the story's set earlier in his super heroic career, could Wolverine possibly not believe in such things as werewolves yet?
"I imagine Logan has seen enough crazy stuff in his life that he keeps an open mind to almost anything," offers Van Lente.
See two of the Marvel's hairiest howlers go at it in the pages of WOLVERINE: FIRST CLASS #10, courtesy of Fred Van Lente and Francis Portela, due December 24. Tell 'em Santa Claws sent you! And for more Werewolf By Night, head over to Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited!
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