….Well, this is a bitter review, but I told myself I’d get through with it. So here’s my review of the final tie-in of the Last Will and Testament filler that is Uncanny X-Man #31. Note there will be a lot of swearing.
Story begins with the students of the NXS tripping over the arrival of Xavier and Celeste calling Tempus out on bringing him here. Given the cluster-fuck that is the 05 when Tyke nearly bit the bullet, it’s understandable. More so since Celeste knows she lost her family because of her powers. But they don’t have time to dwell on it since Cyclops left a message to be activated in the event of the teachers’ deaths, telling them to go the Jean Grey School.
At said School, Malloy is losing control of his passive defense powers and all of a sudden everyone has lost their damn minds and decides to take revenge for the deaths and every single person there is killed. First off, since when did Iceman, Beast, and Storm give two-shits about the NXS staff? Hell, they were the most vocal about putting Cyclops down like an issue or two ago. Second off, what the hell did the students think they were doing by charging him head-on?
This isn’t just lazy writing; it’s bad and only serves as a stupid excuse for both Tempus and Xavier to cross a moral threshold by going back in time and stopping Malloy’s parents from meeting, aborting him from time. See my notes below on that. Anyway, after that he goes back to his time and wipes his brain clean of this mess.
In the rebooted timeline, Xavier bequeaths everything to Cyclops at the Will reading, which none of the JGS Staff like. Cyclops sees Tempus and asks her what she’s doing there, and she explains that she went to the past after they all got killed and aborted a mutant who was too powerful to control. He tells her she’s out of the school, she tells him she’s graduated and will be watching him so if he doesn’t get his shit together she’s going to abort him next, and then Cyclops gives the estate to Storm in exchange for taking in the NXS students while he disappears as the comic ends.
Okay, review time.
Let me start off by saying, this gets a 2 out of 5. They wasted months on build-up, only to erase it and turn everything prior into filler. The sad thing is… I expected this. I was already skeptical when they introduced Malloy as the most powerful mutant ever because never once has any of those types of characters lasted simply because they’re too powerful to live.
It’s the same thing that happened with Legion, the only solution would be to alter the timeline, which is already morally dubious considering that Tempus erased her own child from time, so she should know fucking better than anyone how messed up that was. Not to mention it goes against Xavier’s creed about now mutant being left behind.
And her self-loathing (or at least that’s what the new writer or whoever it is that brings her back will retcon into the reason) led to her taking out her anger on Cyclops. Note he was the only one who got Malloy to calm down before SHIELD fucked up and didn’t do anything wrong. Him, and Magik, are blameless, yet everyone’s on-board the Cyclops hate train.
Do I think this could have been handled better? Fuck Yes. She literally had all the time in the world to go back to when they had a mutant cure, get one, and just give him the shot before he awoke his powers so he’d continue to live a normal life… until the Skrull killed him anyway.
And how she says she’ll be watching, and the threat to abort him, is the sort of shit I’d expect from super-villains or one of his ex-wives. She the new Kang the Conqueror, only it took one issue to make her unlikable. Bendis was forced to rewrite his story, and from the cover you’d believe him, but this was just poorly done overall.
I was supportive of this series, because I believed in the characters and what Cyclops needed to do. Tempus was the first student he saved, proof he wasn’t sitting on his ass and doing nothing. But now? After this waste of several months, BOTA, and all the other meaningless crap?
I don’t think I can do it for much longer. I’ll probably still review it, but honestly I’m not going to put in more effort than the writer did. They’re clearly of the opinion that none of it will matter once Secret Wars becomes the damn end of it.
Okay, this event is starting to drag out, but I still have a self-proclaimed duty to review it. So here’s my review of Uncanny X-Men #30!
The issue starts out with Maria Hill receiving confirmation that Magik, Malloy, and Cyclops have been killed by missile fire. She doesn’t know whether to be happy or to get ready for war with the rest of the X-Men, but she gets on a plane to go see it for herself. At the same time, Eva is with Charles Xavier and gives him permission to look into her head to see why she’s supposedly angry at Cyclops while, in the present, Beast tells the others he’s dead now right before Storm suggests trying to kill him.
Anyway, the professor finally gives in and looks into her mind as Malloy casts Auto-Revive on himself but can’t do the same for other people, subsequently proving Cyclops point about how SHIELD were dicks and him deciding to end it today. End of World scenario, people. As for Charles, Eva then calls him out for saying one thing and then doing another when he threatens to simply wipe her mind and then send her off.
Emma, in grief, ends up sending out a psychic signal that hurts everyone in the JGS and then calls to Malloy, who is naked for some reason. Really, he can’t conjure up clothing or something? Anyway, she punches him in rage over Cyclops’ death, only for him to kill her too by accident.
So, that’s the last of the NXS staff. As for the students, the Stepford Sisters sense Emma’s death and Hijack decides it’s time to get into the game. Eva appears with Charles Xavier to do just that, once again violating the time stream. As the comic ends, he does his iconic line and hopefully we move into the final part of this arc.
Okay, review time….
Yeah, they’re wasting time at the point. As you may or may not know, Secret Wars is going to reboot the Marvel Universe, so with that on the way they’re killing as much time as possible by doing stupid things like SHIELD getting in a lucky missile strike and Malloy killing Emma. I’m sorry, but my patience for an arc that’s been dragging on for months with little shock value has run out.
3 out of 5, and that’s me being nice.
Following up from the last issue, Magik visits Doctor Strange in the past, interrupting his…. Private time. I guess even the Sorcerer Supreme is entitled to getting action on the side. Anyway, Magik discusses the problem and asks what he can do about the issue with Malloy. He gives her a suggestion.
With Magneto, Malloy, and Cyclops, Magneto thinks that Cyclops is going too far while Cyclops defends his actions and eventually Malloy sends him off to the school. Magneto then feels he failed Cyclops because he didn’t notice that he had a breakdown and was now endangering them all. Tempus thinks to herself that she can go back in the past to fix all of this, which Celeste calls her out on because she read her mind and knows what happened to her.
To sum up the events of the Eva special, she got lost in time and eventually ended up in the year 2099. There Magik was the Sorceress Supreme and she stayed for seven years, mothered a child and had a husband, before losing control of her powers and ending up at the beginning of Mankind. Morgan Le Fay was there and explained to her that the future she had been to no longer existed, but she ended up trying to get back only to find everything had changed and Stark had become Sorcerer Supreme. He tells her the truth of the matter and then helps her get back to her own time.
Anyway, the rest of the X-Men are divided on the whole time-travel thing while the adults are stuck at the Jean Grey school and learn that Beast essentially screwed up when he told everyone that Malloy was a threat. This is proven when Magik shows up with the Eye of Agamotto, intent on using it to see into him and what he is capable of, when Helicarriers arrive and open fire. The comic ends with the sight of three skeletons burning and Eva arriving in the past to greet Charles Xavier.
Okay, review time…
In truth, I’m more than a little mad. They keep dragging this arc on and, from the looks of it, plan on retconning the entire thing if she prevents his death somehow. That would mean, much like BOTA, the entire thing was a waste of time.
It gets a 3 out of 5.
The story picks up where it left off, with Cyclops offering to buy the man breakfast. Maybe it’s because he’s got some psychic potential and psychics seem to be willing to listen to him more, but Matthew goes willingly. Maria Hill is then panicking because Cyclops, who declared he wants to start a revolution, just got his hands on the current most powerful mutant there is.
Then we get a quick look at the JGS, where Beast is tripping over his furry self in stressing out about this new mutant and the world powers don’t care and blah, blah, blah. I’m not going to lie. As much as I figured I would love hearing the words ‘Cyclops was right’ or the equivalent from the sellouts there, they managed to ruin it because it feels hollow in the grand scheme of things here. It feels forced.
Anyway, Cyclops takes him up a steep plateau for some private time while Magik goes to fetch breakfast (yeah, like that’s going to happen) and he lets Matthew take a peek at his past with the professor. To sum it up, he fought for the professor’s idea and no matter how many times they save the world they were still hated on a genetic level for it. So the professor may have been wrong (which his psychic ghost residue mentions in this week’s Magneto) and they need to take their place.
Matthew then starts to flip out of control and so Cyclops shows him that a number of other mutants went through the same thing and they can help him. He still loses it and Magik pulls Cyclops out, but he won’t abandon him despite Magik telling him they need a plan. She then tells him he gets one more chance and if she doesn’t like what she sees then she’ll act on her own.
He goes back in and tells him that they’re going to help him, train him, and make him better. He doesn’t lie to him and admits that a mutant as powerful as he is will act as a deterrent for people like the Purifiers and while he’s willing to go as far as he needs to, with him they won’t have to. At this point, as the comic ends, Magneto pops up and tells him that he’s going just a bit too far.
Okay, review time.
Honestly, at this point I just want the arc to end. The only really good thing is that it gets to skip that even bigger nightmare AXIS, but other than the rehashing of Cyclops’ goals we really don’t learn much and the art was clunky…even more than usual. 3 out of 5.
The next issue in the Will and Testament of Charles Xavier is out in Uncanny X-Men #27 and this is my review/recap!
Okay, continuing where we last left off Cyclops manages to get on-board the Helicarrier with Maria Hill not ordering his detainment to her bedroom since he’s come with the other X-Men. Right away we see where everyone stands on the topic of the coming of the God-Mutant, Cyclops and Storm want dialogue first, Wolverine wants to go the Snikt-List route, and Rachel decides to hit him with an illusion of Charles and the Avengers telling him to behave like he’s a naughty toddler.
To be fair to Rachel, it almost works. For like five panels. Then he asks why they’re trying to stop him from being what he’s supposed to be, and works towards the ‘might is right’ attitude. Then, once he learns that Charles Xavier is actually dead, he brings the Helicarrier down and teleports the X-Men to their individual schools in the process, stating he doesn’t blame them since they were being manipulated too by Charles. I’m assuming he knew the school’s locations and that Charles was dead by reading Rachel’s mind.
Cyclops has an anxiety attack as he lands in the snow and the Stepford Sisters calm him down and read his mind. Again, I question where’s that psychic protection he was supposed to have had when he first visited the JGS to recruit, but it doesn’t matter since Magik arrives and offers to take him back to the other X-Men, who are basically assembling all the heroes to take the new mutant down.
Cyclops has a different idea, one even the sisters think is crazy. He returns the site of the crash via Magikbus as Maria Hill is asking the guy to leave the planet and then talks to him, explaining that they have a lot in common, with both being former prodigies of Charles and have been manipulated by him, and that he’s a one of a kind blessing but the world may not be ready for him. He then offers to buy him breakfast to talk about things and he accepts as the comic ends.
Okay, review time.
Honestly, there were pages wasted here and this whole arc is negligible. You don’t introduce God-Tier characters without some criticism and I’ll be glad when it’s over, but at least they didn’t resolve things by trying to punch him out. Still, I’m have tempted to think that Cyclops earned his trust the same way he does virtually every psychic, invite them into his head, whisper sweet words of understanding, and then breakfast.
I give it a 3 out of 5.
What will the X-Men do in the face of the last will and testament of Charles Xavier? Read my review of Uncanny #26 and find out..
The comic opens with Maria Hill having a moment where she realizes nothing is going right in her life. That tends to happen when someone wakes up with the Power of God and next to no control over it, which happens to be worse than a villain since they aren’t likely to end the world while still on it. The Avengers who can handle this are off-world, the Fantastic Four are nowhere to be seen, and she has to evacuate the state to prevent any more casualties. Good luck with that.
Meanwhile the X-Men fair little better with Cyclops wanting to leave and daddy Wolverine and mommy Storm are telling him to get on his big boy shorts while ultimately Emma Frost tells him to get in the damn plane. I’ll chalk it up to the fact that they don’t know Malloy is currently laying waste to South Carolina as the reason they’re taking their sweet time on the plane rather than using Magik to teleport them or the fact that they think those few alone will be able to handle this. Still, a Cerebro scan should have been done prior to take-off.
The only person who’s making a lick of sense is Firestar, the outsider, who’s more of a X-Men than her crush, Ice Kid. No, I did not misspell his name. Until he grows up from being a brat who tried to freeze the world over and gets off his high-horse, he’s just a prick. Even Wolverine wasn’t this bad at his worse when it came to his drama with Cyclops and that’s saying something. Those two could more or less work together when something tries to kill them or wipe out their species and go out of their way to save one another before a giant robot crushes them.
Maria Hill tries to get her Psi-division to do a long-range hack on the poor, world-ending bastard’s head, but he ends up giving them the mind-crush treatment. Oh well, that’s unfortunate for them. But she did learn that he’s a mutant, and that means it’s time to go see the X-Men about that and pawn the danger off.
And to round out the number of whiners in this issue we have Triage suddenly having a problem with attacking the Avengers in a training simulation despite having met them at least twice now. In the first place, you’re the healer. You’re not supposed to fight, you’re suppose to heal and try not to get shot first even though you can apparently heal yourself, Elixir-lite. Also, I call bullshit on Hijack being thirty; he’s twenty-five at best.
As the comic ends Beast says they really might not come back from this as Maria Hill catches up to the group.
Okay, review time….
Let’s be frank here, this issue could have cut out the pages with the kids arguing semantics and that double spread of Malloy so they could get to the meat of the story and have Rachel get to work on his brain or Maria Hill could try sniping the poor sod or something else before she needs to call in the X-men. They’re dragging this event out for some marketing scheme or other and it bores me to tears, which is a disappointment since I’ve grown tired of God characters who have just been introduced and lead to an escalation in the story that’s more than unnecessary.
I’m all for slow build-up, but get to the revolution already.
I can honestly say that if you skip it you won’t miss much, 2 out of 5.
Okay, after the revelation from the last issue that Charles married Mystique, you’d think that things couldn’t get anymore screwy. So what’s this big secret of Charles? Here’s my review of Uncanny X-Men #25.
It starts with the Charles stating that what he’s done may horrify them, but at least hear him out to the end. While the X-Men were out, he found the signature to a mutant so powerful that he had to find him before Magneto did. It turns out to be Matthew Malloy, the dude from before who is wrecking stuff like there was no tomorrow.
Charles’ first interaction with him goes poorly, what with the kid having possibly killed his parents and able to sense him trying to tamper with his mind. He nearly kills him for it, with Charles only able to get away by hiding his presence. To Charles, the kid represented his worse fears in that humans would persecute mutants more if he was left unchecked.
Everyone decides to take a break and get their heads together before he went on, with Storm reasoning with Cyclops that Mystique going all over the place may be because he killed Charles. That being said, none of them are letting her get the school, final will be damned. Kitty and Nightcrawler have at tender moment, while Dazzler and Beast chat about how surprising it was that he married Mystique but Dazzler’s going to kill her anyway.
Back at the will reading, Charles admits he considered putting the boy down, but he didn’t have the manpower to do it and had to go with option B. That’s to say he pretended to be a child the kid’s age and earned his trust before placing psychic blocks on him in the same manner he did with Cyclops regarding Vulcan and possibly Jean Grey. So basically he lobotomized him from being a mutant in a way that Magneto would call his ass out on.
This is nothing new to me, but Cyclops naturally has a problem with this and calls him a hypocrite post-mortem, which rubbed some people the wrong way. Then Iceman says the stupidest thing he could and gets blasted for it. It’s really telling with Wolverine being the calm one and Iceman being a dumbass that they are trying to make him look bad now that Wolverine is dead…
Anyway, after Rachel controls her father’s body to calm him down (again, abuse of power when he just had Dark Beast pulling that shit), Charles continues with how later on he proceeded to make sure the blocks were in place until the kid was old enough to see through the illusion and had Charles wipe his memories of everything since he didn’t want to live with the guilt of killing his parents.
Now that he’s snuffed it he wants Wolverine and Cyclops to go and check on him and make sure everything is in order with Rachel there to make sure the blocks are put back up. Once they’re done they’ll get the last of the will and testament, dragging this out for another issue at least. As the comic ends we see Matthew wrecking the city he was in.
Okay, review time…
This wasn’t all it could be cracked up to be. Honestly, the Mystique reveal was more shocking. And they are really derailing Iceman…are we sure the good Iceman won when he tried to freeze the world?
Either way, 3 out of 5.
Okay, my review of Uncanny X-Men #24. Not much really happening in this issue, so the review will be short.
The story picks up where it left off, with She-Hulk needing Cyclops for the will reading and Bobby running off because of it for some strange reason, but I stopped caring about this iteration of him some time ago so it doesn’t matter. Beast reveals he’s known all along where Cyclops was, sounding even more like a jilted lover than Wolverine, and Storm calls his ass out on it before they saddle up to and get him. At least Rachel finally spoke the hell up for once.
Then we skip to Maria Hill trying to get the new guy whose killing everyone left and right and failing, but that’s hardly interesting.
Meanwhile the sell-outs, I mean Jean Grey School team, arrives to find Dazzler looking insane, Scott sleeping naked for some reason, and basically tell him to get dressed and come on. Scott doesn’t want to, but decides to take his own ride with the adults while the students stay behind. When we get there we learn that Professor X married Mystique, which must make things awkward for Rogue, Nightcrawler, Iceman, Wolverine, Forge, and every other being she’s slept with.
Oh, and there’s a mutant so powerful that it threatens the relationship between mutant and humans so they need to go take care of that.
Okay, review time.
No. Just no. Leaving aside the fact the art isn’t worth writing home about, this has to be the dumbest string of words I have read. Mystique murder Moira, has threatened to kill his students multiple times, and shot her own daughter, and somehow he married her? I could get having a kid with her, because quite frankly she’s basically genetically tied to the majority of the X-Men that way, but damn.
This issue gets a 2 out of 5.
Well, now that that cop-out of an arc is done , our story picks up in the aftermath by starting the Original Sin tie-in event, The Last Will and Testament of Charles Xavier, in issue number 23 of Uncanny X-men.
The story begins with a couple arguing. I don’t want to get into details because about five panels in the wife or girlfriend is killed in a random Skrull attack. Weren’t they supposed to be near-extinct or something after Secret Invasion? Either way, the windowed guy blows a Skrull’s head up all of a sudden and has no idea what the hell he just did as SHIELD does their damn job.
Okay, first off, this was last year. Unless this was after AvsX he damn well shouldn’t be a mutant and last I checked it’s only been a few months at best. Next, doesn’t SWORD deal with alien threats? Given how Brand is, that Skrull ship shouldn’t have made it into orbit, and even then not before a team of Avengers went to town on it. Out of all the feasible threats, the Skrulls are the last ones who should be involved here, so that’s just lazy writing.
Anyway, we then skip to She-Hulk, who was disbarred in her comic if I recall, still working and being shamed for her many sexual encounters, who receives something important. Three guesses what it is, and the first two don’t count. Madripoor has Dazzler pissed the fuck off for everything Mystique as done, but they know she’s damn well gone so there’s nothing to be done, and in their secret school Cyclops is having another mini-break down as he recalled Xavier’s last moments.
Tempus arrives to ask him how he is, but he in turns asks her about the time travel incident she went through. She tries to deny it, but the Cyclops has children who travel through time and has done it himself plenty of times. He knows when someone has aged years in the span of weeks… that, and the Stepford Sisters told him. Eva… she doesn’t take it well and storms out.
As for the JGS, She-Hulk crash lands in their front yard to see that the school is wrecked, yet again. Honestly, how the hell have they not been shut down? If the administrators who investigated it the first time didn’t get mind-wiped the school would have been. Are any of the teachers actually qualified? Uh… anyway, the point of her visit is that they need to read the will of Charles Xavier.
As Magik returns with the rest, Dazzler runs off to the bathroom, Magik and Emma tell Cyclops not to talk to her and talk to Hijack, while Magneto goes back to his own solo-series to be a bad-ass. Hijack eats some humble pie and Cyclops welcomes him back. Dazzler, on the other hand… well, a therapy session might be in order from the way she’s looking at the scissors…
Back with the dude from the opening, who runs into his dead girlfriend or wife’s sister who wants to talk to him because he’s looking kind of like a bum, he loses control over his powers and kills her and everyone near him. Yeah, this is kinda why no one trusts people with powers in these series.
She-Hulk then asks if Xavier’s really dead. We can’t blame her since the X-Men come back more than anyone else in Marvel. But since we saw him chilling with Nightcrawler in the afterlife, let’s say he is. The comic ends with She-Hulk needing to have Cyclops there to read the will as well.
Okay, review time…
The art work takes a hit more than normal this issue since it hurt my damn eyes to look at, and since this is the opening of the plot I won’t get on the about that, but the continuity errors are annoying to say the least.
3 out of 5 at best.
It’s time to bring the conflict between Bubblehead and both factions of the X-Men to a close as I give you my review of Uncanny X-Men #22!
The issue opens with Magneto bringing Dazzler to Triage, since Elixir is still missing. Emma and Magneto take a look at her and think that Mystique has gone too far, even compared to them at their worse. I can’t say since I wasn’t around for those times, but what matters is that Dazzler is healed and pissed off.
Meanwhile, in Westchester, the townspeople see what’s happening in the distance and figured it was only a matter of time before SHEILD came after the X-Men and decide to get out of the way. But not before Hijack lives up to his codename and hijacks someone’s car. The school is under attack and has to be abandoned while Maria Hill has to contact the Avengers and White House about this little screw up, as well as ordering Dazzler shot on sight for walking away with no proof she’s involved, which is illegal.
This is when their nuclear anti-mutant payload gets unleashed and they turn out to have even newer Sentinels. Yeah, good luck explaining that. See, you can’t trust SHIELD not to have weapons of genocide.
Anyway, before they all get wiped out, Hijack pulls a big damn heroes and stops the entire fleet from functioning. Although the sell-out was about to switch teams, I’m not question how he got to New York so quickly. What I am questioning is why his powers are working when we know for a fact that Bubblehead made the Blockbuster Sentinel immune to his powers before. I’m calling it an ass-pull, but it gets the job done as he has the Helicarrier open fire on the new killer robots.
The two teams gather as Cyclops and Beast go after the one responsible since his powers were being controlled by nanosentinels by Dark Beast… wait; didn’t Dark Beast get captured in the last issue of Astonishing X-Men, after Iceman froze a good part of the world over? I knew SHIELD couldn’t hold Mystique, but come on! And, as tempting as it is to assume that this is the cause of their broken powers, we all know that the nanosentinels don’t explain why Magik was forced into her dark-side form or why Colossus was screwy and the best Forge could whip up was some tech to keep him all metal, or Magneto, who could sense metal, not noticing.
Ass-pulls all around!
Anyway, the initial blast managed to damage his suit, killing him. But he left a bomb behind that Hijack takes care of. Thus the day is saved, minus the fact that Maria Hill will probably be fired considering that all of this happened on her watch, as Cyclops points out before Dazzler quits because Mystique managed to kidnap her on the Helicarrier and the X-Men were the ones who saved her.
Okay, review time.
Ummm, ass-pulls all around really take away from it all. Let’s be frank, I don’t care about Dark Beast being the one responsible because it’s a lighter ass-pull and… well, no one’s going to miss a version of Beast being dead.
But really, this cluster-fuck was manufactured to try and tie everything up in a neat little bow from the fact that Hijack was selling out to the other team and just so happen to be useful to having a familiar villain be killed off.
On one hand, it’s finally over. On the other, Mystique still got away and, while she lost her main source of MGH, she can always find some other mutant and hook them up to make more.
So… 3 out of 5.
And we’ve reached a turning point in Uncanny X-Men #21 folks! Read this review for my thoughts on the matter!
The story picks up where it left off with Cyclops blasting the JGS staff as his powers run out of control until he passes out. Naturally things go from bad to worse as Magik goes Dark Childe and summons a dragon. Storm puts them both down with a bolt of lightning and the group needs to decide what to do with the two as Beast says he’ll handle it. Part of me was cheering that Beast may have been done in by the blast, but it was false hope. Maybe he’ll try to redeem himself by not being a douche-bag, but he doesn’t even get a chance as Mystique wearing Dazzler’s skin has come for the two of them with SHIELD backing her in Helicarriers.
Wait, back up a page. How the hell does Storm know that Magik has Limbo inside of her? She shouldn’t know that unless her daughter from the future told her, and I’d like to have seen that on-panel or at least an admission. And why the hell is Quentin in his bathrobes outside in the rain? Plot-holes!
Uh…anyway, back in Madripoor we have the Blob earning respect the only way you can in the place: kicking the shit out of everyone else in a bar brawl. Like he said, he was an original brotherhood member and he will be respected. But naturally his drug-gained powers fail and he needs his next fix, so like all junkies who know where the source of their drugs come from he goes to get some fresh from it.
He leads Magneto straight to Dazzler, who rightfully points out Mystique has made him a druggie and he should be ashamed. Magneto does not tolerate mutants being exploited for MGH and given the rampage he’s been on in his own series, the only reason Blob is still alive is because they’ve known each other so long. Magneto frees her and they both set out to go fuck up Mystique’s plans.
Back at the JGS it comes as no surprise Maria Hill is there and wants Cyclops. She’s got the hots for him and this is a chance she doesn’t want to pass on. But, since having something wrong with him could potentially back fire while in bed, she gives Beast an hour to see what the hell he can do to fix it, much to the shock of Mystique-Dazzler. They don’t have five minutes before Helmet Head, who I now suspect is a future student of Beast’s from his dialogue, takes control of their Helicarriers and open fire.
Beast, in another moment of shocking competence, tells Storm to take the battle head-on and keep the school intact while he figures out who is responsible by examining Cyclops and Magik. Man, getting chewed out by the Watcher did some damn good after all. Too bad he got shot. As for Maria Hill, SHIELD once more proves their incompetence as they explain they’ve been compromised (again) and Storm brings down the lightning on them.
We then have a brief cut to the NXS school, where the kids have been looking all over for Emma. Her daughters don’t even need to read her mind to know she’s worried and annoyed for Cyclops since he left without her, like you would expect from an ex-girlfriend who isn’t out to ruin your life because you broke up with her. This is a rarity, of course. She says she can feel something is wrong and just as she does something in the sky comes falling down towards them.
The JGS sends out a message for the students to get to the emergency bunker as Quire reads Maria’s head to try and figure out why they’re attacking and Mystique-Dazzler is just walking away. Meanwhile Beast still proves himself a douche-bag by talking trash to an unconscious man he’s known his entire mutant career, but he does say he knows who is responsible just as the Helmet Head tells him it’s time to show him who’s the smarter one as the comic ends.
Fucking teasers! Would it have killed them to just say the guy’s name in the last panel so people could rail about it! Stop dragging it out, Marvel!
Ahem… okay, review time.
The art was not to my liking but sadly was standard for this series, which is a damn shame considering how All-New X-Men is goddamn beautiful. Even worse is the fact that the pages are a jumbled mess to me as they cut away at the worst times. They couldn’t have done the NXS scene before the scene with Maria appearing?
The plot is moving, so there’s that, but I can’t give this more than a 3 out of 5.
Okay, things escalated in the wake of the latest Sentinel attack and I’m giving you the highlights in this review of Uncanny X-Men #20.
We start again with David Bonds being interrogated by Maria Hill. She’s grilling him thoroughly, but he knows nothing. She only relents the moment she gets word about the fiasco in the last issue, where Cyclops had to deal with the fact that someone set them up. She ditches David like a bad date and ends up floating 1000 feet over Ohio to get to her real target.
Cyclops manages to get on board by using the triplets to have a little four-on-one chat inside her head, where she declares him under arrest and he blames SHIELD for the attack in Chicago. She claims SHIELD had nothing to do with that and tells him he can use the psychics he has to check her mind. He takes their offer and the Stepford Sisters spill that she doesn’t know who’s sending them, she’s afraid that if it is SHIELD then she can’t touch them, and that she has a crush on Cyclops. You can tell by that grin on his face he probably knew it already, but tells her than until they can prove that they aren’t at least partially responsible then they are at war.
In my opinion I believe that he just baited them into using their resources to fish out their mole. But more to the point, Maria Hill’s obsession with catching Cyclops makes so much sense now. She wants to take him and probably lock him in her bedroom. Well, we can’t blame her since that seems to be a thing going around now that he’s single.
Anyway, back in Madripoor we see that the Blob is still alive after Magneto dropped a building on him. He’s followed Mystique and Sabertooth to the source of the MGH but gets caught in the act. It’s made clear he’s addicted to the stuff and they task him with guarding Dazzler, which will probably bite them in the ass soon enough.
But Mystique has more pressing matters, like trying to get SHIELD and Cyclops to destroy each other. She does so by claiming Magneto was in Madripoor and that was where she was to follow his trail. Maria Hill ends up thinking that he may be trying to fan the flames, but either way you can’t hide giant robots forever.
Meanwhile David Bonds, after having the sanctity of his home violated, decides to go on the move while being unaware SHIELD is tailing him while Cyclops tries to work out how they’ve been led astray by someone hacking Cerebro. Since there are only a few mind intelligent enough to know it exists and how to hack it, all immediate signs point to Beast of the X-Men. The kids note that cutting off their search for new mutants means this is no longer a revolution, but a war.
At the JGSHL Magik and Cyclops immediately run into their old teammates. He makes it clear he wants to check Beast’s lab to absolve him of everything, but no sooner than he gets the words out Rachel Grey senses something psychically amiss just as Cyclops loses control of his power (yes, I laughed when he blasted Beast) and SHIELD issues order to go catch his ass since he lit up on satellite, ending the issue.
Okay, review time.
This issue moved the plot forward and had a few funny moments, but the art was lackluster once more which has sadly become the norm. Other than that I had little complaints other than the cliff-hanger. It gets a 4 out of 5.
After the atrocity that was Issue #18, I admit I lost some faith in the series. Let’s see if I can’t get it back by reviewing Issue #19 of Uncanny X-Men, in which the war against SHIELD is declared anew.
Our story begins in Atlanta, after Cyclops has kicked Hijack off the team. It appears that a day has passed and Hijack slept off being given the boot, only to wake up and find Maria Hill and three SHIELD agents in his home while he’s in his Spider-Man undies. She tells him they have no reason to fight, not that she didn’t remove everyone else’s car in the neighborhood to be safe, and tells Hijack to give her all the information he has Cyclops or she’ll detain him forever, claiming that since he’s been cavorting with a known terrorist she’s allowed to hack his email…
In which the moron apparently wrote about how he was booted out to his girlfriend and was begging her to take him back. Leaving aside the fact that his girlfriend got him shot before, if you gotta get relationship advice from the person threatening to arrest you, you fucked up somewhere.
At the same time this is happening, Mystique and Sabertooth have Dazzler in some undisclosed location. Her eyes and ears are covered so she can’t hear or see anything, and Mystique makes it known that she considers Dazzler a traitor to her people. But, when asked why she doesn’t kill her and be done with it, she tells Sabertooth that Dazzler still has her uses.
Mystique has been using Dazzler as the source of Mutant Growth Hormone, you know that stuff that pissed off Magneto so he dropped her through a building? She, hypocritically, claims that Dazzler is a “sell-out dirty whore” for working with SHIELD and then goes about her way. The moment she’s out the door, Dazzler says “Ow” which, given the timing, indicates that she’s not only aware of what’s going on but she knows what Mystique is doing to her. Yeah, she’s going to be pissed off as hell once she gets free.
Maria Hill, after the above, is still harassing Hijack and claims that Cyclops knew they must have been watching his place and set this conversation up. Now, while I’d like to dismiss this notion outright, given what happened to Eva and Fabio when they visited home…I have to admit she’s got some logic there in that he had to of known that was going to happen. Since Cyclops didn’t have the Stepford Sisters give a mind wipe to him, the evidence looks damning to both me and Hijack.
Speaking of Cyclops, he’s watching Cerebro for new mutants as Eva arrives. He’s looking at the big picture, reminding himself what they’re fighting for. He then notes Eva has been different after the training mission and tells her that she can tell him anything, but she hesitates and uses the signal of a powerful mutant popping up as an escape to avoid the conversation, only looking on mournfully as he leaves.
The team arrives in Chicago, only for it to be a trap in the form of a big Sentinel that gives birth to a bunch of smaller ones. Magik, Fabio, and Cyclops’ mutant powers fail to work appropriately, leaving Cyclops to cause a boatload of property damage and Magik unable to teleport them to safety before they get caught in the enemy crossfire and there isn’t anything left in the spot, making it seem as though they were blasted to atoms.
However, they appear a minute later safe and sound. Eva sealed them in a Time Bubble and warped them all a minute forward to avoid the damage. Magik then shows the fruit of her training with Doctor Strange before he started playing super-cop and uses a defensive spell, an energy manipulation spell, and a spell to make some multi-headed dragon thing that chomped on the robots.
With that done, Cyclops congratulates Eva on a job well done and she smiles earnestly, but Celeste whispers to her she needs to tell him about what went down in her trip to the future. Before Cyclops can follow up and tear the biggest robot apart it runs away. They reason that whoever sent it rigged it to mess with mutant powers, but only those they knew about. I’m calling bullshit on this because there are only a handful of ways that works.
One is magic, in which case I expect those Sentinels to be magic-proof like that ass-pull in Battle of the Atom next time. Another is like what they did to Cyclops in the prison with the shock collars. In both cases they were general purpose, but the way they’re talking is that the person making them is tailoring them, and considering Eva’s powers still work it’s not something that suppresses the X-Gene completely.
Either way, the new students get their first taste of a hate mob and Cyclops is pissed off because this was some sick game and he’s tired of being hunted. He declares if it is SHIELD behind this they’re going to war, and if someone else was using SHIELD to do it and they didn’t care enough to put a stop to it, then more war. Basically, he’s decided SHIELD is the main enemy as the comic ends with dome-head watching from wherever he is.
Okay, review time.
Judging from how things are going, I’m just assuming they didn’t count #18 as canon, which I’m all for given the mess that it was. But the humor in this issue was rather crass and I can’t say the dialogue was anything revolutionary, in fact it felt like a step down from Issue #17, but the mediocre artwork is still miles ahead of what it was from the last issue and the plot is progressing.
3 out of 5 is my rating for this issue.
Fair Warning: This Review Contains Heavy Swearing
…Yeah, I can’t say I’m enthusiastic about this art or issue but I’ve been reviewing the series for a minute and that means I write about the good and the bad. And boy was there a lot of bad in Issue #18 of Uncanny X-Men. So I going to do this, but it’s going to be short and I will be using many, many swear words.
The story begins with the NXS kids and staff returning from somewhere in what appears to be the Blackbird, sometime after the botched Tabula Rasa training mission judging from how they say Tempus has been nagging on Cyclops to take Hijack back into their group for some time. You wouldn’t know time had passed given that her hair is short again while Phoebe’s is missing a distinctive shade of red. Yeah, if I didn’t have enough issues with the art before, I’m going to bitch about that later on. Anyway, it’s the aftermath of the beginning of the Trial of Jean Grey event and as such they find the All New X-Men group gone and the flashbacks begin.
The first one starts with two weeks ago, where Cyclops is training with his broken powers when Magik decides to bring Kitty to meet with him and then goes to hold the rest of the NXS back so they don’t interfere while the two come to terms with themselves. Kitty pretty much puts her fingers inside his head and threatens to kill him by un-phasing just enough for it to damage his brain. Arguments that have already been fucking discussed get brought up again, which understandable given it is a flashback to before BotA, and they whine about it for a minute until he asks her what she needs, which we already knew was a place to stay with the Teenage Original 5 X-Men.
Then, a week later, they pick up with the O5 arriving and some of the worst scenes in the series with Emma Frost bitching about bringing teenage Jean Grey to stay with them. And then the scene between Cyclops and Teen Jean and Teen Cyclops was…lackluster. It was not only short, but what should have been an emotional session that tugged at my heartstrings was a waste of three pages.
Back in the present they wonder what steps they should take next. These range from securing a space-craft and going after them, trusting them to make it on their own and so on. It then ends with Cyclops firing into the sky.
Okay, review time…
What. The. Hell?
Leaving aside the fact that this art is not my cup of tea—I mean come on, the continuity errors with Eva and Phoebes’ appearances, the lack of eyes some times, the horrendous expressions, and the sheer amount of wasted space was something that spits in the face of those who bought the comic—what is wrong with the writer?
Having Eva whining about Hijack twelve times like a little girl? Come on now, you can do better when you come from the future. Given some legitimate reasons like if he goes rogue or something, and then take Cyclops, Emma, Magik, and the Stepford sisters, into a private room and do that psychic projection thing that they did in Battle of the Atom so they have a leg up on what’s going down.
And then Emma? What was this? She was practically cordial to her teenage-rival in Battle of the Atom and to this damn point in this series. Granted the moment she saw an adult Jean Grey she tried to gouge out her eyes, but we all knew that was coming. Being so childish and saying she would bring a baby Colossus to their time and see how they liked it…that doesn’t make any sense coming from the former White Queen and Headmistress of the X-Men.
And then the reunion between Cyclops, Jeen, and Tyke? Short, inconclusive, and a waste of three pages like I said prior. This could have gone a lot better, and I mean that in every sense of the word.
And then the plot? Wasted. We just got one team member kicked off, one sent to the future or past and back, and a looming confrontation with SHIELD…and you give me this piece of garbage, Marvel? The majority of the issue covered the prelude and aftermath of the ANXM kids coming to the school. They turned what should have been inserted directly after that waste of time and money that was the most useless crossover of the year, Battle of the Atom, into a goddamn filler piece that does little to nothing and keeps away from the meat of the good stuff. And there was no damn closure at the end at that.
This issue…words do not begin to describe how disappointed I am. People were already whining Cyclops’ revolution was taking too long, and you put useless filler that would have been better several issues ago in with bad art? Fuck you, Marvel, for adding to the problem when I legitimately like the series.
This Issue is getting a 1 out of 5.
Stuff Happens. Important Stuff with the Kids.
At this point I’m starting to think that the NXS kids deserve their own side series like Wolverine’s do. But then I think about that travesty and decide this way better as I review Issue #17 of Uncanny X-Men…although I will admit the one about Toad was a good one.
The issue begins with the kids being dropped off in a strange landscape and left there with no instructions by Magik. Given that she can teleport across time and space, it’s natural to assume that they may not even be on earth, but each comes up with their own theory as to where they are and that they are being tested. Also it appears that Phoebe has dyed her hair red like she said she wanted back after Irma went black.
Anyway, Hijack reveals he kept his cellphone and whips it out. They tell him Cyclops said they can be tracked by them, but he states he couldn’t break his contract so he kept it and then states they’re in Montana. They are then split apart by a very large creature with jagged teeth and a deafening roar.
Eva, who has a very potty mouth upon being surprised, goes with Fabio and correctly guesses its training to see how they deal with unpredictable situations. That includes her and Fabio being surprised again by some Ostrich-dinosaur thing that chokes of Fabio’s goldballs (sorry for the phrasing) and keels over, but not before Eva has vanished in her Time Bubble and is nowhere to be seen.
With Phoebe and Irma, they have to put up with Triage screaming like a little girl because they ended up in a cave with a spider-slug thing the size of his fist. I will never let him live this down, but since the girls are trying to hide Irma does the mind manipulation thing they did in Limbo to make him brave. He seems to like it, but that might because he and Irma clearly are developing something and having a pretty girl in your head doesn’t sound too bad as long as you can stop thinking about dirty thoughts every few minutes. It worked for Cyclops and Emma, if you ignore she took advantage of his vulnerability while with Jean and then Jean hooked them up to avoid a bad future from the grave…Yeah, he might want to be careful in the long run. Anyway, Fabio finds them, but Eva is still nowhere to be seen.
We then skip to Benjamin, Hijack, and Celeste hiding. She explains they are in Tabula Rasa, a.k.a the place Archangel blew up and led to the bad future of Uncanny Avengers. She’s giving them an overview of them being in a bubble that will show what the earth will look like well after I’m good and dead when she can sense a mind in the distance. Unfortunately said minds don’t like her and mind-rape her to the point that her sister’s couldn’t hear her and assumed she was dead within their Hive Mind, leaving it to Benjamin to try and reason with them by using his powers to gain some level of trust and understanding and calming them down. It works to an extent, as they touch and read Benjamin’s mind, and they reactivate her brain.
She’s pissed, more than Emma when confronting an Adult Jean Grey, and tries to mentally assault them despite Benjamin stating that they are an evolved species. It goes poorly. But then Eva pops up and traps them in the time bubble.
She looks like she went through hell. Her hair is longer, her clothing are torn, and she looks like she aged a bit. But the first things she does were hug Benjamin as though she hadn’t seen him in a long time, tell Celeste not to tell anyone anything about what she gleamed from her mind, and kissed Fabio on the forehead. But she became downright hostile to Triage, who only wanted to heal her, and seeing as the two of them were the first of the team to meet up and be friends he must’ve fucked up bad in the future.
Anyway, SHIELD shows up with Nick Fury, Coulson, Fucking Hawkeye, and Spider-Woman because of Hijack’s phone. Yeah, he fucked up. They want Cyclops, the big fish, not the small minnows and tell them to put their hands up.
The Stepford Sisters can’t affect them because SHIELD regularly has anti-telepathy equipment given their line of work. Now Eva could probably take them again, but Hijack turns their fancy gear on them. It’s then that Magik teleports them out and back to their base.
Cyclops is pissed off. It was a field test to see how they reacted, and most of them passed with flying colors. Even Fabio, who stumbled his way into a victory. While I doubt Celeste and Triage did as well, the only one to outright fail was Hijack.
They were in the most unexplored place on the planet and SHIELD tracked them down in 15 minutes, because of his cellphone at that, and he revealed his power. Next time SHIELD is going to be prepared for it like they were with the Stepford Sisters. Cyclops can’t have that so they drop him off at his old place, which is bad when you remember what happened to Fabio and that Mystique will most likely be the one talking to him with that silver tongue of hers to turn him evil, and the issue ends.
Okay, review time.
First off, considering that Kitty was in the background during that lecture I’m assuming this is before the Trial of Jean Grey. Second off, according to rumors next issue revolves around Cyclops, Teen!Cyclops, the aftermath of this chapter, and Tempus’ crush on him.
While I want to believe she went to a bad future and took some training from hell, there is a chance that the writers aged her so they could pair her with Cyclops if what I’m hearing about her romance for him coming into play. You can’t blame the young girl either for the crush. He’s hot enough that Pixie, Irma (for a while), and even the teenage host of Lady Deathstrike in X-Men #11 wants him.
Teenage girls find him hot, to the extent even his teen version was getting some play before BOTA, but while Cyclops is a lot of things, and most of them positives with a spattering of negatives, he’s not skeezy enough to have a relationship with her like that. Even though he did meet her mother already, and she was his first rescue, and so on. That’s Wolverine’s department.
Not to mention, whenever she was at clearly traumatized her. I mean, getting lost in time is mandatory for an X-Men with powers remotely close to hers. But if there is any luck she learned more about her powers and will serve as the leader of the team behind the adults.
As for Hijack, I’m conflicted on how to feel because Cyclops was a little harsh, but he has a point since they stated he warned the idiot about the phone thing. It’d be one thing to kick him off the team because he was disobeying an order that was morally wrong, but Hijack admitted the main reason he didn’t toss his phone was because of the damn contract. You’re an X-Man, and a fugitive one at that, fuck the phone contract and worry about the giant-ass robots SHIELD and Helmet-Head keeps sending at you!
Honesty, Cyclops can’t have that sort of reckless behavior right now and was somewhat right to kick him out, despite the benefits his power-set has to offer. If he’d used his phone at the base, they would have been compromised in a hurry. Like Cyclops said, mistakes have killed good X-Men before.
But Hijack knows wayyyy too damn much to be let go if he decides to go traitor and turn them into SHIELD. I don’t normally agree with mind-fuckery, but at least fudge the location of their base in his mind so he can retain his abilities and know how they work without compromising the group. Even if he’s being used as SHIELD bait by some chance, like a couple of people suggest when I lurked in the forums.
The sad thing is that I liked Hijack as he had the potential to be a great character. A victim of prejudice-turned-crusader of their rights without going overboard, a neat power, and as an older member of the team he would have been an excellent big brother figure to the rest of the younger members (barring Benjamin since he’s collage-age). On the other hand, the X-Men are lacking interesting villains and if you can’t join or stay with the team…in the end it really depends on what the storyboard has laid out for Hijack, but this won’t be the last we see of him.
So, between Tempus having aged and gone on her own time travel trauma and Hijack gotten the boot, many things have happened. I’m calling this a must-have issue that will have major effects on the plot, so it gets a 5 out of 5.
Don’t do drugs kids, or Magneto gets angry!
Everyone else has had some character development on the staff somewhat, but not old Mags. So we get this lead up into his own upcoming series in Issue #16 of Uncanny X-Men.
The issue begins with a follow-up Pro-Mutant rally at the same campus that the Blockbuster Sentinel ran amok in, where Magneto is having a vivid daydream of slaughtering them left and right. He’s pissed off because until now they’ve done nothing while his people have suffered and their problems comes from humans. He’s so pissed off he bites his lip until blood comes out and he snaps back to reality, where Agent Dazzler (Mystique) meets with him.
As usual she knows nothing, he doesn’t trust her, but then she starts cross analyzing him and states that what the world is focusing on is Scott and no one really paid much mind to him. She basically baits him into going to Madripoor, where a mutant suddenly runs the show and has taken over. Naturally, his interest is peaked so he dons a suave hat and goes on vacation here.
If you don’t know, Madripoor is essentially a hellhole in the Marvel Universe. That’s saying something. Even more so when we see some kids going to get Mutant Growth Hormone (drugs) from a bar while some dude is getting his ass beat on the street.
Mags walks into the Bar and starts asking around for some info after a drink. They don’t take to kindly to that and the bartender cracks him over the head with a baseball bat and tells them to take him out back and gut him. Now, at this point they didn’t know it was Mags they were screwing with, so he makes it clear by controlling their guns and knives and beating the hell out of them until they tell him to go to the Hydra Tower.
There he runs into The Blob, Sabertooth, Silver Samurai, and the new Queen of Madripoor, Dazzler. Well, at least for a few seconds before she dropped the disguise and shows she’s Mystique. She wants to offer him a seat at the table, since he’s given them a chance, but he brings up the MGH that’s on the streets. While she says it was all in play before she got there, and to be fair it probably was given the place, he says that while Charles wanted co-existence and he wanted them to be the dominant species, this ain’t going to fly since kids and drugs don’t work for either.
Magneto flips his lid, has Silver Samurai stab Mystique, whip out bullets that he controls and basically tears through everyone and brings down the building. Now, Mystique and Sabertooth will probably be fine, but it makes a point. He’s clearly unhappy with that place and leaves, but he doesn’t return to NXS and the issue ends with a prompt saying to check him out in his own Solo series.
…What can I say, this issue was excellent. Mags showed that what Mystique had been building up was not what he had in mind. They weren’t the dominant species or co-existing, but wallowing in the waste of drugs and sin. He wants the mutant race to flourish and it won’t as long as MGH and Sentinels are floating around, so he’s going off to do something.
A must-have issue, it gets a 5 out of 5.
It’s that time again, where we take a look into Cyclop’s side of things in the X-Men world, and so we dive right into Issue #15 of Uncanny X-Men that also serves as a tie-in for Inhumanity.
The issue begins with Magik having fallen asleep during a training session with Doctor Strange in the past, before that whole AvX fall-out that made the Avengers unrepentant douche-bags. She nearly guts him for waking her up and apologizes for it, claiming it has been a stressful time for her and she’d tell him more, but she shouldn’t. He’s surprisingly cool with it as long as the world is still turning, although his assistant wants to know if he’s still around and kicking in the future.
When she returns back to her time the girl students have assembled and essentially butter her up for a girl’s nights out because they need to convince Emma and she’s the only one who can do it without risking the wrath of the former White Queen. They find Emma sleeping like a toddler, which infuriates her, but the mention of shopping manages to change her tune until one of her daughters reminds her they don’t have money.
Now, remember they joked about robbing that Casino last issue? Yeah, I don’t think they were joking cause she has a dufflebag full of money. She decides to drag along Kitty as well since she hasn’t changed clothes in ages, who resists until Jean guilts her into it and they leave for shopping in Paris.
After an off-screen spree they get a bite to eat and Tempus asks why the Stepford Sisters hate Jean. Jean states its because of her future self and really just Celeste emulating her mother, who has enough class to not mentally bully a teenage Jean Grey. It nearly starts a psychic cat-fight when Emma notes something is wrong and they leave to go check it out.
After the Stepford Sisters mentally disperse the crowd we get a basic outline of the Inhuman situation. Basically, during Infinity this mist spread around the world and cocooned people who had Inhuman DNA. Simply puy, they’re mutants but with different roots coming from the Kree rather than Celestials or something and they wake up with powers and changed appearances once the cocoon hatches.
This guy wakes up with no clue to his situation until he turns out to be an anti-mutant bigot (really, who isn’t this week) and knocks them out with his power after learning who they were, before passing out himself. AIM then shows up to kidnap him before SHIELD gets there, but leaves the mutants alone and states they tend to kill themselves off against one another. The girls wake up and disperse the police when Emma calls the night over.
Jean wonders what this means for mutants, while Irma thinks that its good since the blame will get shifted onto the Inhumans rather than mutants. Its easier to blame new minorities for their problems, which Emma points out. But Jean states how can they tell the difference at a glance and the issue ends with Emma commenting things just got complicated.
Yeah, I’m not too hot about the Inhuman insert, but it was a nice casual issue. Not really worth buying unless you’re looking to complete a set, but not too bad. It gets a 3 out of 5.
Cyclops’ revolutionary team has an assortment of powers among their new recruits, but out of all of them the one who lacks any development to them or his power is Benjamin Deeds. He’s been wallpaper up to this point, useless in general. It’s time to change that and who better to do it than the only member of the team with a teaching degree, Emma Frost.
Issue #14 begins with a training session taking place after Battle of the Atom, but before the O5 X-Men and Kitty get there. It’s basically a requirement of the X-Men to be able to fight and endure, so having them climb a rocky mountain or hill or whatever in the rain is no surprise. Along the way they discuss how things are going to go down when the O5 get here, with Emma taking shots at Scott throughout the training session, when Benjamin is the last to reach the top and complains about it.
Cyclops, in a rather dickish but accurate move, points out he needs training more than the rest as his powers have no known combat usage. He then hits him and tells him to hit back, which he fails to do so and gets flipped and chewed out with the whole ‘You are not ready’ point. After a shower and an attempt at a pep talk by Triage, he returns to his room to find Emma there and dressed in something that I’d expect Magik to be wearing.
Emma doesn’t need telepathy to read his mind: His powers aren’t as openly awesome as the others, he doesn’t feel like he belongs, he doesn’t know what to push for because he doesn’t know what he can offer. So she pressures him and notices that Benjamin’s powers are more than transformation, but has an effect that makes you feel good about everything as long as he’s around. Thus she decides to take him out for a night.
Magik joins the pair and takes them to Atlantic City, where she tells him to chat up a random girl. He says he’s gay, but I’m not sure he’s serious given that he seems to constantly stare at Magik’s ass. Either way, the attempt goes poorly and he’s forced to flee while Magik notes Emma is being more patient and she claims its Character Development.
In order to elude capture Benjamin tries again and this time he’s more successful, chatting up a girl and shifting his hair to match her own. Emma has him do it more while sending word to Cyclops and we get a montage of him bonding with a variety of people before she has Magik drag him to the Financial District to deliver a letter. He gets it done, but it nearly gets him arrested since she sent him into a SHIELD compound and had him deliver Cyclops’ declaration of war.
Note this type of place has very high security and he just walked up to the big brass. Assassination potential very high. Magik saves him and he gets a pat on the back from the big man himself, stating its time he got himself a Mutant Name.
Now, this issue was filler to me, but character development is always welcomed. At first I thought the guy was going to be another Mystique, which isn’t a bad thing, but he can be more. His ability screws over recording devices and charms people, in addition to a level of transformation. He’s an infiltration expert, a spy in the making, and thus useful.
Despite lacking the violence I love, it gets a 4 out of 5.
Yeah, I can honestly say I’m glad this is over and I will sum it up in a single review, so keep reading for my review of Battle of the Atom Part 10 and closing thoughts.
It starts with a shower of missiles from above as Xorna and Xavier have somehow telekinetically overridden SHIELD’s safeguards to get them to unleash their payloads upon the gathering. This is the first problem. Telekinesis does not work that way. I could understand them mind-controlling some chumps into firing everything or if one of them had Technopathy, but this was just stupid.
While the X-Men try to stop the rain and Present Beast makes the vow never to Time Travel again, which will be broken in a year or two tops, they also seemed to have forgotten that Magik’s mutant ability is Teleportation and just because she passed on her Soulsword doesn’t mean Colossus can do it too. Either way the missiles don’t explode, leaving Maria Hill to wonder just what the hell they shot and discovering that its…
Now, this comes as no surprise as SHIELD has been dicey in general. But for the Commander to not know that every Helicarrier has these damn things on it or know they were producing it in this number is fucking ridiculous and screams corruption and incompetents. On top of that, these Sentinels have had magic applied to them so that the future Sorcerer Supreme couldn’t strip away or something. Since when does SHIELD even have a sorcerer department?
The only good thing about it is they killed Future Beast, after which the fighting just adds in a third party. Not only do Cyclops’ and Wolverine’s teams squabble like children, but Future Jubilee bites despite being an immortal regenerating vampire and Future Colossus gets his brain mind-crushed by Xavier. This pisses off Magik into her evil-alter ego, who now has a legitimate reason to kill the psychic douche and everyone is bitching and whining about it rather than letting her finish him off before he causes more trouble.
Xorna Jean blames Wolverine and Cyclops for this entire fiasco because of the event that led to their Schism. Wolverine continues to annoy me throughout the entire fight that has her kicking their asses with psychic fire that I’m assuming she has spontaneous developed, until the O5 X-Men show up and get their asses kicked too. It only ends when she can’t control her powers and explodes, giving everyone enough time to flee as SHIELD finally gets their shit together.
Then comes the Epilogues where Present Iceman has made himself a douche before Wolverine takes over for him. While both sides agree that SHIELD can’t be trusted, which is a damn given at any point and time, Wolverine tries to take the high-ground again in a speech that, by all means, establishes that he’s a douche every day he wakes up. At this point, when they should be mending bridges, his ass has just bombed them all over again and none of the sensible X-Men on his side countered this.
Then we skip to Kymera mentioning she was tasked with tracking the Brotherhood, Adult Shogo and Present Jubilee having a moment, and Magik bidding her dead brother, Future Colossus, a final good-bye. That night Kitty decides to jump ship to Cyclops’ school and takes the O5 with her.
Now, while I expected and am pleased by this, her reasons are fairly shallow and not expressed deeply beyond a sense of betrayal. Her breakup with Bobby, which last I checked shouldn’t have even been a relationship after that date night, came off as vague in that you get the feeling a writer just wanted it to stop and made her look better by derailing Iceman for a few pages. She had plenty of ammo for quitting, I might add, but she chooses the weakest of reasons and, for some reason, Rachel didn’t join her despite all their moments this event.
I’m going to sum up both this issue and event in two words: EPIC FAIL.
The event dragged on for twice as long as it should have. Most issues repeated things that have been said and established that the feud between schools refuses to die, with Wolverine acting like he’s in the damn right and Cyclops is a murdering psychopath. What happened to the Wolverine in AvsX Consequences who understood him at the end, even if he hated him? And don’t get me started on the shit with Storm and Iceman, its like the story writers want Wolverine and his X-Men to seem like the bad guys.
And what the hell happened to Molly?
The only good thing is that Kitty has joined Cyclops’ team with the O5 and we have some actual antagonists in the form of the evil Xavier outside X-Men Legacy. Whoever penned this ought to be a damn shame for wasting the X-Men anniversary and two months of every poor soul who read it’s time.
This issue and event get 2 out of 5.
Okay, so issue #9 of Battle of the Atom is out and here’s the subsequent review.
It begins after Cyclops popped into the room with X-Men aplenty in tow, only to end up in a white room in his mind and face-to-face with Xorna Jean. Being Cyclops and her being a telepath and Jean, what happens next is expected. She kisses him and he notes she’s not his Jean because she’s a better kisser. Oh Cyclops, really…
Snapping back to reality we learn Xorna Jean and her Brotherhood left during that time frame. Emma calls Cyclops out on Jean being in his head, but she no longer has an all-access pass so I can add that up to jealousy, while Future Phoenix warns him not to let her get in his head again since he has no idea what she’s capable of. Cyclops tries to order them to start tracking the Brotherhood down when not-dead Wolverine shows up because Wiccan saved his ass.
He also swears off sex since he got gutted by his son with Mystique (which is going to be hell to explain when Kurt comes back) but considering Storm is his current partner I doubt that’s happening.
After the usual meet and greet and blame-game, with tantalizing hints that something won’t let the O5 go back and yet no answer because Kymera reports Deadpool is dead, we skip to the Brotherhood. They can’t do what they set out to do, and Future Xavier ends up paralyzed like his grandfather, so Future Beast has decided to skip to Plan B. Teen Jean once again remains vague on what she saw, because the writers keep dragging the mystery out, and they land at Cape Citadel and start raising hell.
This naturally gets the attention of SHIELD and Maria Hill, who really should have taken that vacation Cyclops had Magik send her on. Back at the school Future Phoenix is trolling his younger counterpart and Wolverine is being a hypocrite when they get the message too. Thus begins a battle royale where we have everyone throwing down.
It is revealed that Ice Hulk is basically an Ice Clone that gained a little sentience and serves Xorna Jean that they can’t reabsorb, Kymera is Storm’s daughter, and Magik finds her badass future brother awesome. Eventually the fighting stops when SHIELD arrives and Dazzler (Mystique) is antagonizing Maria into launching the tear gas while she borders on another breakdown. Xorna Jean then has all the Helicarriers fire missiles on the gathering of mutants and then snaps a witty line as the issue ends.Now, unless those missiles reveal that they’ve been building Sentinels somewhere on that base, I can’t find any logic in what they were planning on doing here. More than anything I’m tired of the damn subterfuge. Can we get some straight answers for once, it’s not like the future is going to remain the same once they go back.
It gets a 3 out of 5.
I prefer Jimmy Hudson to Raze already.
Okay, so issue #8 of Battle of the Atom is out now and so is my review. I’m not going to lie, this issue could have been better, but you’re going to have to read to find out.
It begins with Cyclops’ team getting ready to march, only to realize that Young Bobby and Hank are gone with Psylocke. They didn’t even waste panels showing that they already lost the two they were supposed to protect, which probably would have made it better to keep them at the base with the other students they left behind. After that they get a tower dropped on them, so bad opening move for our heroes.
Raze, the abomination of Wolverine and Mystique, was imitating Psylocke and captured the two. With their prizes in hand, they leave Ice Hulk to hold off Cyclops’ team, who were saved by Wiccan. Cyclops has Magik and her future-brother teleport inside, while Phoenix Quentin melts the ice giant, only for the Russian siblings to find Molly and Deadpool waiting inside. There’s some bad blood between the pairs, with Molly disillusioned and vengeful towards the X-Men and Deadpool referencing that Magik unleashes something bad onto the world.
Ultimately it ends when Magik teleports Deadpool outside about a hundred feet up and lets him fall while she stabs Molly in the back with her Soulsword. That’s how quickly a fight with a teleporter is supposed to end. We then go back to Cyclops’ team, who have encountered Teen Xavier. Wiccan offers them some magical protection while Magneto claims his helmet can protect him (which it didn’t on Utopia from Jean), but Xavier just has Krakoa eat them all, which is the third time on Cyclops’ end.
Xavier (and somehow the unmelted Ice Hulk) reports in as Deadpool hits the ground and apparently dies and they decide to flip the switch to send the O5 back. Magik arrives to stop them, only to be telekinetically restrained by Xorna Jean while the other team tries to escape Krakoa and are hurting it from the inside. Yeah, apparently whatever Magik does makes everyone hate her because they all try to kill her, between Raze offering to gut her and Xorna Jean trying to make her kill herself like she did in their timeline. Eventually she teleports herself out while Future Colossus shanks Xavier with his Soulsword.
Here’s the stupid part though, they try to send the O5 X-Men back but they won’t go. Testing the machine with Raze indicates that it won’t work for just them, with old Hank stating that in theory they caused so much mayhem with the time stream they can’t go back through the time cube as Cyclops’ team arrived.
This issue just single-handedly rendered the entire event, issues that could have been spent on progressing the individual series’ stories, meaningless. Bad enough they have Molly playing for the bad guys, they wasted my time if there was no real threat of them going back. The 616 universe can’t be sustained if you take important characters from the past like that, look at what happened when Wolverine killed Hank Pym in Age of Ultron!
I could handle the plot holes when it came to things like psychic protection and the stupidity of certain characters, but this was too damn much. The heroes didn’t even win or make it in time, it’s a fucking cop-out that the O5 remain! They have made it that, short of sending clones of the O5 into the past or Magik teleporting them back to that time period or Eva Bell when she learns what she’s doing, the O5 are freaking immortal because if one snuffs it the timeline will snap.
They’re going to have to retcon or asspull an excuse to explain away this. The one who pinned this story was an idiot and so were the dunderheads that wasted the X-Men’s fifth year publication like this. Smooth move Marvel.
This gets a 2 out of 5, don’t waste your money on it.
Okay, so issue #7 of Battle of the Atom Review Time. Let’s get to it.
To begin with Jubilee wakes from her nap to her adoptive baby Shogo’s crying. You see, Young Iceman left him with Broo the Brood. Now, while Broo is one of the softest characters I have seen in an X-Men comic pre-bullet to the head, he’s going to terrify an infant. There’s no helping that.
Jubilee then receives a little present from Bling! and Armor for him, which will protect him from harm, since it is pointed out the X-Men don’t exactly inspire safety given they are attacked weekly by something. It’s keyed into Jubilee’s biometrics already and, when it is suggested someone else adds in, she offers Bling! the second spot since she came up with the idea. Bling! is flattered, but she’d rather have someone to talk to over Mercury. Teen romances aside, they then hear the alarm telling them that the others have returned.
Wolverine tells Rachel with telepathy to keep an eye on the future X-Men they’re with mentally. He claims something feels off. Good guess…only about six issues too late to matter. Eventually these X-Men drop the charade when they find out that Magik took Young Beast and Young Iceman to the future, causing Xavier to start acting like a douche bag attack Bling!, which gives Rachel an opening to look into his mind and declare Logan was Right.
Bullshit. Everyone with a brain cell knew better than to trust them. It shouldn’t have taken that damn long.
Xavier tells Future Kitty to ‘Do it’ and she shapeshifts into a male Mystique with Wolverine claws and shanks him, calling him Dad in the process. Given that Wolverine has a shitty track record with his own kids, this doesn’t surprise me. I’m still wondering how the child was conceived when Logan and Mystique have tried (and succeeded occasionally) to kill one another and she’s currently with Sabertooth. Xavier then has Xorn Jean take out the X-Men in Hank’s Lab, where she blasts Old Hank by accident and he decides to lock down the school while she goes to help the others up top.
Apparently Blue Wolverine didn’t kill his father since he’s still there, but Wolverine lost his healing factor recently and can barely breath. Jubilee decides to tear out Xavier’s throat with her claws (vampire, remember?) but inches from it Ice Hulk tosses her out of the way and through a solid steel wall. Rogue tries to take his power and mind, but there’s no mind in there so she gets knocked out when he backhands her. Good showing from the Avenger Unity squad member there.
Psylocke decides enough is enough and simply knocks the thing out with a ninety-pound psychic flail, one-handed while holding Shogo, and crack jokes about how being a mom was easy. While I don’t recommend the baby having seen such violence, the thing just knocked out his vampire mommy so I get the sense he felt it was justified. Xavier talks trash to Rachel and makes demands when she puts his ass in his place like the little bitch he is before getting knocked out from behind by Molly.
This is what pisses me off the most. Seriously, why the hell is Molly playing for their team instead of the other future team? Did X-23 gank Chase and Nico or something in Avengers Arena and she blames the others?
Anyway, Deadpool declares his love for Psylocke and wants to express it in battle, but seeing as she’s with child at the moment and Shogo does have a nifty little gift for moments like this, Jubilee tells him to ‘Push the Beep-Beep’. He does and Armor’s power forms around him in the shape of a hamster ball. The kid loves it, but is taken by Jubilee while Psylocke stays to take on Blue Wolverine and Deadpool…I’d give her 50/50 odds.
Old Hank and Xorn Jean in the meantime have locked down the school and taken control of the defenses to attack the other X-Men they know are coming, while Xavier has subdued Krakoa. Xorn Jean tries to play it up like this wasn’t their fault and they didn’t want it to come to this, but it rings hollow considering Wolverine’s about to kick it.
On the outskirts Cyclops’ team has arrived and Sentinel-X goes to assess the situation, where he runs into Jubilee, Bling!, and Shogo. Given that they’ve just had a bad few minutes, you can imagine they are on edge and a guy dressed like Iron Man with a sentinel paint job is asking for trouble. So he removes his helmet and shows he’s Adult Shogo.
This makes a lot of sense seeing as he’s a normal human (maybe) hanging around with the X-Men. He needs some damn protection and Iron Man is just a genius who hangs around with gods, so the suit is a good thing. Jubilee is happy since that meant they never took him away from her as a baby. You know, for being a vampire who hangs around mutants often labeled as terrorists or under attack by purifiers or nimrods. Psylocke then shows up and says that things have gone pear shape, ending the issue.
Now this issue drops the exposition and gets to the damn revelations and action, finally ending the drag fest. And Wolverine got stabbed. These are only good things in my eyes. Finally some damn progression that makes this issue worth picking up, but I can’t say I’m happy with the lead up.
Still it gets a 4 out of 5 and the next issue will hopefully have Cyclops’ saving Wolverine’s ass and making him swallow some humble pie.
It is with some hesitation that I post this review of Battle of the Atom #6, because it does very little and I can safely say that the shortness of this issue could have covered the information in two or three pages and brought more of the story along.
It starts with a flashback of Dazzler becoming the first mutant president, for about thirty seconds. Then she promptly gets killed by, not sentinels, but what looks to be some of those dragon-like creatures from the first issue made by that mutant gone wild. I find it hard to believe that their security sucked so badly she managed to get close enough to cause that much destruction and they were relying on one guy who could duplicate himself. After all the shit they’ve gone through they should know better than that.
What, were they going soft?
Then, in the current future we see the Magik’s team meeting with the future X-Men, who do the whole ‘you need to leave routine’, but Colossus is happy to see his sister and has her sword (which is basically her soul). Meaning some real bad stuff went down. Given that present Colossus told her he would kill her the last time they met for manipulating him into becoming the Juggernaut, I would have rather the issue focused on that.
But, after the first round of the usual spiel, we flashback again with Beast stating that for every two steps forward they take seven back as he hangs over Dazzler’s corpse. At this point the future X-Men reveal they know about the team who went back to the past, but rather than stopping them from screwing up the time stream by dragging them back, they just tell the others to go to stop making it worse. Freaking Young Iceman points this out by the way.
So, after Quentin threatens to throw Young Beast into the sun in the same manner that Logan tried to kill young Cyclops, a few of them want to vote to help since they hold some blame. Kymera and Piotr are for, Wolverine against, In the end, Older Cyclops team makes it back to their school when Magik pops up with the real future X-Men.
This issue was really short and, again, most of the details were a rehashing of the last few issues with a backstory that could have been solved in 2-4 pages. I can’t give this more than a 2 out of 5 as it is in no way worth the cost of the comic and the event is dragging along. They should have just made a villain from the future come back to the past or something.
Hell, they could have brought the girl from the first issue as the main future villain.
I don’t know what’s more amazing, I’m getting some decent views for my reviews or the fact that I’ve been doing this for a month consistently. The only way to find out is to keep going, and today that involves Battle of the Atom #5 of 10.
The issue picks up with everyone recovering from Xorn Jean mentally freezing them, including Magneto apparently, as she does battle with four other psychics. Now, once again, considering that it was stated that Cyclops, Magik, and Magneto had some psychic protection in All-New X-Men #10 or #11, the least the writers could do was have Magneto take off the damn helmet and Scott take off his mask before it happened. Yeesh.
Young Cyclops wants to help his girlfriend, like a good boyfriend should, but his older self states they have their own fight as Wolverine comes in talking about how he’s getting kids involved, again, which led to Schism in the first place. Please note that Wolverine has no right to talk as his school is possibly one of the most dangerous places on Earth, especially after taking in some of the Hellfire Club brats, and that trip to the Savage Lands was less than peaceful. Young Cyclops blasts him to save us the trouble and Storm tries to play commander, ordering both sides to stand down and painting Scott as the villain, which he calls her out on since she brought the ones causing the conflict here.
Xorn Jean meanwhile manhandles Irma psychically, angering Emma even more than simply being an adult Jean Grey entails, and they quickly go into trash-talking. Being the object of Scott’s affection and their ages are brought up as well, which was due, making it seem like a petty squabble between two women rather than the fate of the future. But, even with Young Jean and two remaining Stepford Sisters, it isn’t enough and Emma gets taken down, with her daughters.
Rachel, Kitty, and Older Kitty arrive, but because her powers are being dampened by Xavier Rachel can do nothing about the psychic battle while Kitty says she hates her older self. Oh yeah, she’s defecting after this event is over. Then, when Young Cyclops tries to help he gets attacked by Ice Hulk and once again the hypocrites speak of stopping the fight with kids present while the future X-men says a couple of bruised kids is worth it to get the original five home and the Cyclops pair decide to settle this the old fashion way–by blasting them.
Oh, and Deadpool says Goldballs is a legend. If I could trust him, this would be awesome.
Magik meanwhile shows up at the Jean Grey School and picks up Young Iceman and Beast for a little field trip to the future. Magik has been once, but she feels the future X-Men are lying in her very bones thanks to being demonic or something and, since all of them have their doubts about who these future X-Men say they are, naturally the only way to get some answers is to go check on the future yourself.
On Utopia, Young Jean wins against her older self and sees something that make her shocked to her core. Personally, I think that fight was fixed and Xorn Jean showed her what she wanted to. At the same time Deadpool gives a speech saying that things were so bad in the future they made him a part of the X-Men, which shouldn’t be so bad considering he was the heart of X-Force, but Young Jean backs him up and says its time to pack it in and leave.
Older Cyclops doesn’t want to let it go, but Magneto points out if its a pretty girl with red hair involved he should always be questioned. For examples see Rachel, Jean, Hope, Madelyn, and so on. Wolverine thanks Deadpool, but Deadpool mentions that it was all a lie under his breath.
Yeah, at this point we can safely assume they aren’t as kosher as we were led to believe. You know, if you ignored the evil faces Xavier kept making. But to compound at the end it Magik arrives with her two passengers in the future, at their school with freaking sentinels that act polite and a bunch of future X-Men…including Kid Omega hopped up on the Phoenix, Gandalf Iceman, Mustache Bar Colossus, and Iron Man?
I’m not going to lie, it was only half the series in and I could tell that these X-Men were playing some kind of second agenda.
I’m not saying they are evil, yet, but it seems like they’ve got their own goals and are lying to their past selves. Look at how they popped up when they were already getting ready to send the rest back and how they resorted to violence so suddenly. I’m more saddened by the fact that future Molly may be a bad guy than anything, but I’m reserving judgement until we get the full story at the end.
Issue #10 has action, the art is nice, and the plot finally moves, so it gets a 5 out of 5.