Weapon X cover (Image via Marvel)
2. Weapon X
Strangely enough, we didn’t learn much about Wolverine’s backstory until the 1990s. Until then, he was just a grumpy, kind of short mutant who showed up and started working with the X-Men. Writer and artist Barry Windsor-Smith was the first person to start fleshing out the history of Wolverine. Windsor-Smith, by the way, is a now legendary comics artist who showed that he was more than capable of handling Logan’s story.
Weapon X is a twelve-issue story arc published in 1991. Yes, it does indeed come from the gloriously overblown days of yore, but don’t let that fool you. This is a well-done and truly chilling series that’s worth your time.
In Weapon X, Logan is captured by a shadowy government agency intent on turning the mutant into a killing machine. To that end, they wipe his mind and bind near-indestructible adamantium to his bones. Logan’s mutant healing factor keeps him from dying, but it, unfortunately, doesn’t keep him from feeling the intense pain from all of the procedures.
Logan eventually escapes, but not before he nearly succumbs to the dehumanizing treatment of the Weapon X program. He also briefly becomes a quasi-Jason Voorhees, slicing and dicing his way through nearly all of the workers at a remote weapons facility. His escape and lingering brainwashing would prove to be fodder for many more stories to come, but Weapon X is the first and one of the best.