Comic Cover Corner puts the spotlight on a remarkable comic cover and the artist responsible for creating it. A cover I came across recently that blew me away is Old Man Logan #31, which was drawn by Mukesh Singh. The cover features an elderly Wolverine reuniting with one of the great loves of his life, Mariko Yashida. Not only is the art stunning, but the cover itself tells an emotional story through body language and colour. As a fan of Wolverine and Japanese culture, I think the cover does a brilliant job of capturing the soul of the character and his connection to the Land of the Rising Sun.
The cover acts as a great call back to one of Wolverine’s most important relationships. Logan was forced to mercy kill Mariko after she’d been poisoned, with the character staying dead for decades. The content look on Wolverine’s face says it all. He’s ecstatic to have Mariko in his arms again. The same can be said for Mariko, who looks at peace. There’s a elegance to her features that showcases how good Singh is at drawing facial expressions.
The expressions of both characters add to the tragic nature of the scene because Mariko is holding a dagger behind Logan’s back. She was resurrected by The Hand and turned into the Scarlet Samurai to serve them. The expressions also create an open-endedness that can be taken in a variety of ways. Is Mariko luring Wolverine into a false sense of security to stab him? Is Logan happy to die in the arms of his former love? The ambiguity is one of the strongest aspects of the cover.
Atmosphere and colour play important roles as well. The rainy background creates a sense of tranquility and intimacy. The stillness that surrounds Wolverine and Mariko makes me think they are embracing in Japan. The grey of the rain is offset by the vivid red of the Scarlet Samurai’s costume. This is a clear association with roses and the colour of love.
You have to admire the smaller details that Singh incorporates. Wolverine’s grey hair looks as if it’s blending into the rain and the lines on Mariko’s costume conjure images of traditional samurai garb. The use of light is clever too, with a bright spot appearing above Wolverine and Mariko. Singh’s use of light helps to increase the ambience.
There’s so much to love about the cover of Old Man Logan #31. It’s eye-catching, emotional and atmospheric. They are the traits that grab attention and make you want to read a comic. Singh is a masterful artist and you can check out a few variations of the cover on his Art Station page. It’s intriguing to see how he arrived at the final image.