X-Men #19 (1966, April)
So, hey, you can all feel free to comment. Also, if there are any issues of other Marvel comics you want me to review (or even specific issues of X-Men comics you don’t want to wait for me to get to), I’ll see what I can do. Anywho, today, by Lee, Kirby, Roth, Ayers and Simek, “Lo! Now Shall Appear – The Mimic!”
It starts with Cyclops overseeing the others in the Danger Room. Jean apparently likes comics – neat. Beast almost kills Angel and Marvel Girl with a sandbag.
Then Xavier gives everyone a vacation. Scott’s still too full of angst to ask Jean out. Warren has no such hang-ups when he asks Scott out.
Bobby and Hank go to the library to meet Zelda and a blind date for Hank, who he accidentally insults before finding out she’s his date. After this and the way he talked to Jean in #17, it’s clear he’s just a sexist pig.
Vera! I gotta say, Vera’s really pretty. I like her. I would totally date her. She’s more my type than Zelda is. Plus, she’s a librarian, which is the career I hoped to get into. So I definitely like Vera. I might have a crush on her. Shut up. Anyway, on their way out, they run into a jerk named Calvin Rankin. He’s a dick. He’s been trying to get a date with Vera, and he’s mad she’s out with Hank after turning him down. Dude, shut up. A woman doesn’t owe you a date just because you like her. It doesn’t work that way, jerkass. He gets in a fight with Hank and duplicates his powers. Then he duplicates Bobby’s powers. He then bumps into Jean, insults her, and duplicates her telekinesis.
Calvin shows up at the school, gets all their powers, calls himself the Mimic, then challenges them to a fight. He holds them off initially, but then they beat him. He grabs Marvel Girl and escapes. He takes her to an abandoned mine while the X-Men follow in their copter. He tells her his life story. His dad was a scientist, and Calvin knocked over one of his beakers. He breathed in the gas, and discovered he could copy their abilities. His father took him to the mine to build a device to make Calvin’s mimicked abilities permanent, but died in an accident when people came to see what was going on.
The X-Men reach the mine, and Mimic uses their powers to find the machine and clear a path to it. He activates the machine and reaches it, then collapses. They all escape before it explodes. Mimic loses the powers of the X-Men, and it’s revealed that the machine was actually designed to do that, rather than make the powers permanent.
The Mimic was kind of an interesting character. He’s not really a villain. He’s just a jerk. He wasn’t looking to engage in a life of crime, he just wanted to show everyone how much better he was than them. He’s made a few more appearances over the years, sometimes as a threat, sometimes as a pathetic guy who needs help. He was most recently used in Christos Gage’s X-Men Legacy, as a legitimately nice guy. An alternate version of him was also a long-time member of the Exiles, a series Marvel should bring back, dammit! X-Treme X-men sucks, so give us our Exiles!
But, uh, good issue. This is actually the last issue for both Lee and Kirby, though of course, Kirby had only been doing layouts for the past few issues.