Marvel Introduces Wolverine's New Archenemy

The epic X of Swords crossover event continues in Marvel's X-Men books this week, delivering three new chapters in the story as the champions of Krakoa must collect their swords and prepare to face the champions of Arakko. Two of this week's books focus exclusively on Logan's journey to find his sword, a blade forged by legendary swordsmith Muramasa, who previously created a sword for Logan in the past (making his debut in Wolverine #1 in 1988). Along the way though, Logan crosses the path of one of the champions of Arakko, also looking for a Muramasa blade, and quickly realizes this will be his opponent in Otherworld and perhaps a new archenemy for life.

Full spoilers for Wolverine #6 and X-Force #13 below!

In Wolverine #6, Logan tussles with the Silver Samurai to find where Muramasa is hiding these days, while at the same time in Arakko both Pestilence and War go to Arakko's The Tower of Broken Will to locate one of the champions. There, hidden in a pit on his own, is Solem, a character revealed to have killed War's husband and then be sentenced to isolation in the pit until the end of time (and who is pictured below). When told of his place as a champion, Solem said: "I assume I'll fight their greatest warrior, then? Nothing less will do." If he only knew!

solem x of swords logan
(Photo: Marvel Comics)

In his journey to find Muramasa, Logan learns of some new developments in Japan including the existence an extremist faction of The Hand (the ninja clan that frequently fights Logan and Daredevil). After finding their hideout, Logan realizes that this version of The Hand has created a portal directly to hell, bringing them even closer to the icon of their worship, The Beast. The big wrinkle however is that inside Hell is none other than Muramasa, who has been seemingly killed and damned to its fires to forge new weapons for The Hand and The Beast. Logan falls into the Hell lava and melts into an Adamantium skeleton.

Logan is pulled from the lava and placed in a cell, where he finally meets Solem who explains how he found his way to hell and why he seeks Muramasa, even telling him "The two of us....were clearly meant for each other, as best friends or worst enemies." After recovering Logan makes a shocking discovery about Solem, he has Adamantium enforced skin, described as "like a micro-fibrous version of chainmail."

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For a brief moment the pair come together to seek out Muramasa, finding him at a wedding ceremony between his demons and The Hand where he'll be bringing them together. The marriage is sealed with two new swords crafted by Muramasa, who has placed his own soul into the blades. Logan and Solem leap down, with Solem killing both the "bride" and "groom"and securing the two swords. In that fracas though he discovers something, the Muramasa blades can cut Adamantium and thus can kill him potentially.

While holding both swords he offers to sell one to Wolverine, who inquires: "What do you want for it?" Though it's unclear what Logan paid for his sword, he's shown afterward returning to Krakoa and arriving at the circle of champions with Magik and his new Muramasa blade. It's unclear when Logan and Solem will finally have their confrontation, but it's going to be a battle for the ages, and if Logan manages to be among the defeated on the otherside, he could come back different.