When it comes to legendary comic book rivalries, few have been more brutal than the one between Logan and Victor Creed. Oh wait, you may know them better when they lock up as Wolverine Versus Sabretooth; that also just happens to be the name of the brand new Marvel Knights Animation DVD which just hit shelves courtesy of our friends at Shout Factory.
Based on a run of comics by Jeph Loeb and Simone Bianchi, Wolverine Versus Sabretooth uses the same style of animation previously utilized to bring various Astonishing X-Men minisodes to life. Consider it animated comics, literally. In this story, Wolverine has recently regained access to all of his memories, but is still in the process of putting his relationship with Sabretooth together.
The good in this story is heavily reliant on the gorgeous artwork of Simone Bianchi, which comes to glorious life in this animated adaptation. Seeing as this falls under the Marvel Knights banner, there’s an obvious increase in violence in the art and animation, with oodles of blood flying here and there. Much like the recent Wolverine film, the blood isn’t gratuitous, but is actually a honest iteration of two blood thirsty characters.
Your love of the story will likely come down to how much you enjoy Jeph Loeb’s Marvel Universe work. For me, Loeb’s best work has been when he’s written the Batman character in his classic The Long Halloween and Dark Victory mini-series. While I’ve enjoyed his Marvel collaborations with Tim Sale well enough, none of them have been as memorable or groundbreaking (at least to me). This means that I have a hard time getting into Wolverine’s character in this film, as I don’t feel that it’s as strong a version as others (Mark Millar and Chris Claremont continue to be the masters of Wolvie, in my humble opinion).
Because Wolverine Versus Sabretooth originally ran as minisodes, each chapter ends with a cliffhanger and end credits, which can get a little annoying. That’s a minor quibble though, and for fans of this storyline, or Wolverine fanatics generally, seeing him cut loose in bright and bloody animated glory is a definite must.