Rampage (UK) #3 (Story 2)

 Title: Rampage (UK)
 Lookback: British History
 Posted: Jan 2023
 Staff: The Editor (E-Mail)


"Rampage" magazine from Panini UK ran from late 2004 through early 2007.

On the surface it looks more like an "infomercial" for the latest movies, video-games, and other pop-culture of the time. But the earlier issues also featured 11 or 12 pages of original Marvel comic material created by the same pool of UK-based creative talent which was responsible for the Spectacular Spider-Man (UK) Magazine — the magazine which later became Ultimate Spider-Man (UK Magazine).

I didn't manage to grab all of these Rampage issues when they were original published, and I've been sniffing around on eBay for the ones I'm missing. I finally managed to snaffle this issue #3 and get it back safely home to New Zealand just this week.

Spider-Man doesn't appear in either of the two short stories from this issue. The first six-page story featured Daredevil, and this second one is a solo Wolverine tale, also six pages. Out of an extraordinary sense of completeness of my duty as a comics historian, I'm going to add both to the site database.

Story 'Apple a Day'

  Rampage (UK) #3 (Story 2)
Summary: Wolverine
Publisher: Panini Magazines
Writer: Jim Alexander
Pencils: Paul Marshall
Inker: David Roach
Lettering: Peri Godbold
Colorist: Matt Brooker


Wolverine is drinking in a bar in Tokyo. It's late. Wolverine is the last remaining customer, and the barman says it's time to close up. Wolverine pops his blades and threatens the bar man, saying that:

See these, bub –? They decide when it's closing time!

Let's just wind that back. The barman simply wants to follow the licensing laws, and wants to get back to his family. So Wolverine literally pulls out a lethal weapon and threatens the guys' life? Forces him to stay? Unlawful detention of a person against their will? That's literally assault and kidnapping. This Wolverine is a total jerk.

At this very moment, a pretty Japanese girl in a kimono turns up out of nowhere and offers Wolverine an apple on a plate. Wolverine accepts it, eats it, and drops unconscious. This Wolverine is also an idiot.

I would like to point out that Wolverine is actually incapable of getting drunk – his healing factor works too fast. That also means that he's also pretty much immune to being drugged. But... we'll put that aside for the moment, and allow that his healing factor is running on a bit of a go-slow.


Wolverine awakes in a large enclosed space and is immediately confronted by a Who's Who of his signature foes. Lady Deathstrike, Apocalypse, Sauron, Sabretooth. And then... Magneto. Also present is Professor X who urges Wolverine to attack, destroy, shred, maim, mutilate, etc. his hated enemies!

About that point the drugs wear off. Wolverine realises that (a) Professor X isn't actually Professor X, and (b) almost all of his foes were robots. He shreds the robots into scrap metal, as Prof X gets up out of his wheelchair and runs for the hills.


Professor X is revealed as the shape-changing Mystique (who also played the original Japanese girl who offered the apple).

Magneto is revealed as... Magneto. The "plan" is explained that the apple contained a soporific and a powerful hallucinogen as part of, quote:

Our attempt to force you over to your feral side, Logan – to make you a cold-blooded killer and entice you into the Brotherhood of Mutants.

They declare a stalemate, and Wolverine leaves, their attempt to "make him go bad" has supposedly failed.

But frankly, this version of Wolverine already seems to me like he was a bad guy to begin with.

General Comments

The cool 1990's crowd of "Bad Boy" super-heroes included Punisher, Ghost Rider, Wolverine, Deadpool, and a good few others.

They were edgy and cool with their guns, knives, and "I don't care" attitude. We loved them dearly, and purchased their one-shots and limited titles with wild abandon. Their barely contained rage at the "world which didn't understand them" mirrored our own teenage (or older) frustrations.

But those "anti-heroes" have to walk a tightrope with a perfect balance. For every snarl, snark, and snikt, which shows how little they care for the world, there needs to be a counter-balancing element of humanity which makes us care for them despite that. A hard shell with a squashy inside, they need to be the Skittles of the comic-book world.

This version of Wolverine has fallen right off the tightrope. He doesn't care about anything, and I don't care about him.

Overall Rating

So edgy! So awful.

One Web.

 Title: Rampage (UK)
 Lookback: British History
 Posted: Jan 2023
 Staff: The Editor (E-Mail)