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X-Men #9 (1965, January)

August 7, 2012

Guest-starring the Avengers, by Lee, Kirby, Stone and Rosen, “Enter, the Avengers!” The “Enter, X” titles get overused a lot. Oh well. Time for the story.

Enter, the Avengers!

That’s an awesome wheelchair.

It starts with the X-Men on an ocean liner. Scott blasts an iceberg the boat was about to hit.

X-Men #9

Great! But what about the rest of the iceberg?

I guess Lee and Kirby were unaware that icebergs generally tend to extend below the surface. And so do boats. Scott shattered the tip, but the ship is still bound to hit what’s under the surface. Oh well. After the X-Men fuss over Scott a little, they’re telepathically contacted by Xavier, who tells them to stop Lucifer if he can’t. As Xavier presses forward, the ground falls out from beneath him. But he’s got a pair of hydraulic arms that stop him from falling.

X-Men #9

It really is a bitchin’ wheelchair.

But Lucifer still manages to capture him. We pop back to the X-Men in a little Bavarian village, and then the Avengers show up in the same village, following impulses from Thor’s hammer. The Avengers proceed to terrify some poor guy.

X-Men #9

He just wanted some directions.

The guy drives on, and comes across the disguised X-Men. Then Angel takes off his shirt and flies off, terrifying the poor guy again. I feel so bad for this guy. He was literally just looking for directions somewhere, and all these weird people start showing up, and he’s just some random European dude who has no idea who these people are and he thinks he’s going crazy. Superheroes are dicks.

Anyway, Lucifer shows Xavier a big-ass bomb that’s wired to go off if Lucifer’s heartbeat stops.

Lucifer fires a beam at the X-Men, but Xavier sends a telepathic warning for them to get out of the way. And then they dynamically prepare for battle! . . . Well, mostly dynamically.

X-Men #9

Jean defeats her greatest foe: A small hole.

I can’t help but hear Xavier’s praise as being sarcastic. “Well done, Marvel Girl! You avoided tripping on the small hole that was easy to notice and to avoid! Good job!”

Then the Avengers stumble on them, and Xavier tells the X-Men to delay them while he deals with Lucifer. And so, we get one of those classic “heroes-fight-over-a-simple-misunderstanding” deals.

X-Men #9

The original AvX.

While they brawl, Xavier telepathically knocks Lucifer out. Then he mentally explains the situation to Thor, and the Avengers leave. The X-Men join Xavier in Lucifer’s base, and he and Cyclops go to the top of the bomb to deactivate it. Xavier scans for it carefully, worrying about setting it off, since apparently a stray thought could blow it up. OK then. Once the fuse is found, Cyclops blasts it. And then it ends with Xavier letting Lucifer go. Because, apparently, all the strain has made Xavier retarded. He’s a supervillain, Professor! Take him to prison! Something!

January 1965 also had Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch appear in Strange Tales #128, fighting the Human Torch and the Thing. Pietro and Wanda are considering leaving Magneto, and decide to go to the Fantastic Four for advice. As soon as they show up at the Baxter Building, the Torch and the Thing attack them. The Witch is knocked unconscious accidentally, which pisses Quicksilver off enough to attack them. He embarrasses them until the Torch traps him with a fire cage. The Witch causes a sudden rainstorm outside that blows in and puts out the flame, then she and Quicksilver leave, believing that Magneto’s right that humans and mutants can’t get along.

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