Today we take a look at a few images by artist Leinil Francis Yu.  His deviantART page has some amazing alternate covers for the Secret Invasion skrullfest.

Storm and Black Panther look anywhere but at each other in this piece (above) promoting the so-called “Wedding of the Century.”  T’Challa, of course, gets to keep his costume on while Storm shows more skin than she did in her first appearance.  That’s not to say that I don’t like what she’s wearing.  I do.  Especially the sun and moon medallions.  Storm’s always looked great in hoop earrings and she’s retained her classic tiara.  But the tiny diaper-like bikini bottom is not the cutest.  It just looks uncomfortable.  I’m also not into the topknot ponytail on top of her head.  Seems unnecessary.  

T’Challa and Ororo certainly look convincingly regal and perhaps a bit authoritarian, but do they look like two people in love?  

Yu’s pencils for Uncanny X-Men Annual #1.  Storm leaves her team of X-Men to go to Africa.  Except for Nightcrawler, this team of X-Men really stunk anyway.  I am not a fan of Ms. Rachel Summers/Grey/Marvel Girl or Bishop mostly because I think time displaced characters should go back to the time they came from.  Yeah, I know, Rachel’s timeline is gone forever or unraveled or something.  How tragic and utterly uninteresting.  If only we could all ignore her the way her “daddy” Cyclops always has.   

In the X-Men “event” Messiah CompleX, Bishop shot Professor X in the head and became a bad guy to give Cable a nemesis (Way to go Marvel;  turn your only African American X-Man into a baby-killing machine.  Well, he hasn’t actually killed a baby yet, but it’s not for lack of trying.  And the cyborg arm that he stole from Forge after he beat him down?  Dumb.  Soooo dumb.    

I’m one of the few folks who appreciated Psylocke in her pink outfit with the off the shoulder sleeves.  Her transformation from uptight British hero to Asian ninja was pretty in all its Jim Lee glory, but I never felt the same fondness for the character again.  Then Fabian Nicieza created the Kwannon mess and then Psylocke went all Crimson Dawn and then she was killed by Vargas only to be resurrected and shunted off to the All-New Exiles team (which is a fate worse than death).  Hopefully she will return to the proper Marvel Universe and someone can restore her telepathy.  The telepathic butterfly effect over her face was more visually interesting compared to a telekinetic katana.  

The finished cover for Uncanny X-Men Annual #1.  Everyone mourns as Storm walks away with staff in hand.  Is she remorseful, wistful or just wishing she had actually packed some clothes?  As far as covers go, it’s okay, certainly better than the one solicited for previews.  That one just depresses me.  

Promotion piece for Secret Invasion.  Notice how large Storm’s tiara is.  She looks like a Christmas ornament.  I do, however, love Yu’s rendition of Dr. Strange (lower right hand corner right above the Marvel.com box).  Stephen looks a bit wizened, but still handsome in a wild scruffy way.

Heroes Assemble!  A splash page by Yu from Secret Invasion.  Storm looks downright imperious above Thor and Black Widow is smokin’,  

Yu draws the “Outback Era” X-Men for Wizard Magazine.  He has given Storm a very full head of hair.  It would take hours to wash all of that.  I love his depiction of Longshot.  He actually makes the mullet work.