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X-Men comics of December 19 2019

December 20, 2018

Follow me on Twitter (@XMenXPert). I saw Into the Spider-Verse last night. Damn, that’s a good movie. The visuals are stunning, the performances are top-notch, the humour’s great, the Stan Lee cameo brought tears to my eyes. Gwen’s haircut looked wicked. I know there’s already a spin-off in the works featuring Gwen, Silk and Spider-Woman, is there any chance Peni Parker could show up in that one, too? She was cute. Or I guess I should say “kawaii.” But I don’t want to say that. The post-credits scene was one of the dumbest things I’ve ever seen and amused me immensely. I loved how massive Kingpin was. Miles’ eventual Spider-Man costume was awesome. So much about the movie that was great. Loved it. Go see it, if you haven’t yet. And hey, this week is the one where Marvel reminds us all again that Stan Lee died. I knew it was coming. I was still not emotionally prepared. That little black bar on the cover, and that sketch of him inside, the Soapbox at the end. I was not emotionally prepared for this! But, let’s get to it.

Uncanny X-Men #6, by Matthew Rosenberg, Kelly Thompson, Ed Brisson, Yildiray Cinar, Rachelle Rosenberg, and Joe Caramagna. Archangel attacks Magneto, pretty brutally. Magneto tries to talk him down. Archangel declines. And then yells at Betsy. Man, Archangel is a grouch. He does lead the combined teams to X-Man, though. He’s been hiding out in BC. Nothing good ever happens in Marvel Canada. So Jean and Nate have a conversation. They used to be pretty close. Nate is now rejecting any familiar relationship between them, though, boo. As if he won’t always be her alternate-reality son. He reveals that he was the old woman Jean spoke to in the first issue, which isn’t a surprise. The conversation doesn’t go great. The New X-Men have better luck talking to him. And hey, his power burn-out gets brought back up. Though I have an issue with how Jubilee reacts to the New X-Men showing up.

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She’s almost the same age they are.

Has Jubilee forgotten who she is? She was 13 when she joined the X-Men. Even now, when you factor in the sliding timeline, she’s probably only around 20. The New X-Men here are probably all around 18 or so. So Jubilee has no reason to be this dismissive of them. Ugh, all this crap with the older X-Men seeing the New X-Men as useless kids is so stupid. The problem isn’t with how the X-Men treat them, the problem is with how the X-office treats them. It’s the writers and editors who turned them into wallpaper, and trying to make it a plot point just exposes how fucking bullshit that was in the first place. And hey, none of these kids are in the continuing UXM under Matthew Rosenberg, what a shock that is. As I keep saying, the X-office absolutely needs to have long-term plans for these characters. When Age of X-Man ends, these kids need to land in an ongoing series. Anyway, aside from that gripe, this is another good issue. The plot intensifies. We get more information about Nate’s motivation. As always, I’d like more character stuff. There’s a tense moment between Betsy and Archangel, and between Jean and Nate, but I could use more in the way of character stuff. Good art. Cinar’s good at what he does. There are several dramatic splashes. Good issue, but one I still have complaints about.

Extermination #5, Ed Brisson, Pepe Larraz, Marte Gracia, and Joe Sabino. Laura wants to mount Ahab’s head on her wall. Normally, I’m pretty sure she’d be against that kind of trophy hunting. But Ahab is an exception, I guess. Mimic’s dead. Again. Don’t worry, he’ll be back. That guy dies on the regular. Domino refuses to be the one to kill Honey Badger, smart choice, she knows how many people that’d piss off. Ahab’s kids keep converting X-Men into Hounds, and see, this is why I hate kids, they turn people evil, that’s just common knowledge. The cavalry shows up, which includes Armour, Rockslide and Glob. Which just serves to highlight how idiotic that entire sub-plot is in UXM of the adult X-Men sidelining the New X-Men. I seriously hate that sub-plot. Kid Cable convinces the O5 to go back to their own time, though Bobby’s reluctant.

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A good Bobby moment.

First, a trip to the future, to find the twins Ahab’s been using. They were students at Xavier’s before Ahab got them, and pretty nice kids, and Jean gets them to show her their powers, so she can figure out how to reverse them. Cable sends them back to their own time, seconds after they were taken.

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Their memories are erased, the day is saved in the present, though Rachel is still a Hound, fuck that. Ugh. No. No. There is a really nice moment between Jean and Kid Cable, though. He even calls her Redd. Pretty good end to the Young X-Men’s arcs. Kind of a shame it’s over, but they stuck around for a good few years, and most of their stories were cool. So I guess it was time to wrap it up. It would’ve been great if they’d gotten Stuart Immonen to do the art for the section where they return to their own time. That would’ve been a perfect visual bookend, I think. Obviously, it would’ve depended entirely on whether he was interested, and he does have other stuff going on. So I’m not faulting the book for not doing it. Just saying, it would’ve been really special if it had happened. Larraz’s art is great, though. He’s a top-notch artist, he kills it on the scene of the X-Men going to their own time. And I may as well also spoil this: There’s a stinger of Kid Cable telling Adult Cyclops it’s time for his return. So it seems Kid Cable has something to do with Cyclops’ return. Personally, I would’ve liked to have seen Scott stay dead a little longer. I love him, he’s one of my favourite characters, I just think he could’ve stood to be dead a bit longer. Anyway, this was a good ending. Good stuff.

Domino #9, by Gail Simone, David Baldeon, Michael Shelfer, Roberto Poggi, Guru-eFX, and Clayton Cowles. Shoon’kwa, the woman who hired Domino to retrieve Morbius, is now trying to hire her to kill Longshot. Domino refuses. She thinks roughing him up for the mullet is fair, but not killing him. Shoon’kwa challenges Domino to a fight, and dons a bear skin. The Atlas bear, specifically.

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That’s pretty badass, not gonna lie.

So hey, this woman is the new character who’s going to be in Domino: Hotshots. Neat. After Domino defeats Shoon’kwa, we get her story. Her father was a Wakandan general, her mother was a Dora Milaje. Shoon’kwa got really sick, and was visited by the last Atlas bear in Africa, who gave her the gift to see extinction. Domino is able to use her own power to find Longshot, who’s under Mojo’s control. So it’s a luck vs. luck fight, which doesn’t quite end up being as fun as it could’ve been, because the issue is a bit darker. In a different issue, it could’ve been a fight full of the most ridiculous shit going on all around them both, but this one’s got a more serious tone, so we get more Domino tripping and things like that. Regardless, this is a great issue. Shoon’kwa is cool. She’s kind of a bitch, but after the fight with Domino, she’s humbled, and a bit nicer. She also compliments Adelbert on his hot chocolate. So I look forward to more of her, in the relaunched Domino series. We continue our exploration of Domino’s luck power, which is cool. Outlaw and Diamondback don’t do a lot in this issue. They’re around, they just don’t play a major role. It happens. The art’s good. I think I’ve gotten more used to Baldeon’s style, so I’m digging it a bit more. But yeah, the big thing in this issue is Atlas Bear’s full introduction, in advance of Domino: Hotshots launching in March.

Iceman #4, by Sina Grace, Nathan Stockman, Federico Blee, and Joe Sabino. Iceman is set to bust Madin’s brother out of jail, but Madin yells at him, quite rightly. But it turns out she was just hangry, and getting some food lets her explain the situation more calmly. She tells Iceman to go after Sinister, and find a lawyer to help her brother. Good suggestions. A few days later, at the school, Kitty and Storm are getting ready for a speech for Mutant Pride, and also joking about how leadership ages you. And Bobby . . .

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Dick move, riding that thing inside.

He’s been getting Forge to help him with something. Bishop wants to go with him to fight Sinister, but Iceman refuses, which seems foolish to me. At the Mutant Pride parade, Dazzler puts on a show, with multiple costume changes. Iceman goes after Sinister. And Bishop pays a visit to the Morlocks for their help. And gets the best description ever.

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I really like the speech that Kitty and Storm give. It’s the kind of thing the franchise needs more of. The X-Men are a stand-in for marginalized groups. And yet, we so seldom see any focus on what that actually means. Oh, we get plenty of people spouting hate. But mutant rights rallies? Speeches that draw real parallels to the struggles of real marginalized groups? We so rarely get to see those, so it’s really cool seeing it here.

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This is not specific to mutants.

Having these sentiments be delivered by a Jewish woman and a black woman make it even better. Especially coming from a black woman, really. But we’re living in a time right now where Jews are facing more overt hatred again, too. So the whole Mutant Pride parade is such a great thing to see. Anyway, I guess there’s also some stuff in here with Iceman? It’s not really important. OK, OK, the Iceman stuff was good, too. There’s some really interesting stuff going on there, with Sinister’s interest in him. And his infiltration of Sinister’s lair is cool, and there are some clues about Iceman’s real strategy. Plus, the issue has Bishop being described as “the hunky X-Man in tight pants,” which is a 100% accurate description of Bishop, so yeah, good issue.

Dead Man Logan #2, by Ed Brisson, Mike Henderson,Nolan Woodard, and Cory Petit. Miss Sinister is selling Sin on the idea of using Mysterio to once again trick Logan into killing all his friends, and taking over the world. Meanwhile, Logan and Clint are having trouble finding Mysterio and Miss Sinister. Miss Sinister and Sin continue to discuss their plans, with Sinister getting annoyed at Sin’s focus on money. Crossbones threatens Mysterio, and Mysterio dunks on him.

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Crossbones is a Neo-Nazi asshole. Screw him.

Honestly, I hate Crossbones. The guy’s a Neo-Nazi. Every time he appears, I want a black dude to run up and punch him. And it really is past time he got his ass handed to him by someone other than Steve Rogers. Let Black Panther kick his ass. Let Luke Cage destroy him. Let Sabra break him into pieces until he begs for mercy. Just . . . just let people who aren’t the Aryan ideal have chances to kick this Neo-Nazi shithole’s ass. Anyway, Mysterio’s feeling a little overwhelmed with all that’s going on. Fair. Meanwhile, Forge has fixed Maestro’s time machine. But Logan can’t return until he’s dealt with Mysterio. Pretty good. Miss Sinister and Sin play off each other pretty well. Brisson writes an interesting take on Sin. She ‘s young, a little reckless, but she shows flashes of being smarter than she lets on. I still don’t like her, on account of the Neo-Nazi thing, and I want her to get punched. Still, I dislike her less than I do Crossbones, who is 100% Pure Garbage. Clint is a good foil to Logan. They play off each other really well. The art’s good. I do want to say that Hawthorne draws a great She-Hulk. But he does a great job in general. This is looking like a good story for Old Man Logan to end with.

That’s the X-stuff, here’s what else I picked up.

West Coast Avengers #6, by Kelly Thompson, Daniele Di Nicuolo, Triona Farrell, and Joe Caramagna. Sharks! Kate snaps at her mom! Fuse has more secrets! This is a really good series and you should be reading it.

Champions Annual, by Jim Zub, Nyla Innuksuk, Marcus To, Jordan Boyd, and Clayton Cowles. A spotlight on Snowguard, with Nyla Innuksuk consulting to ensure greater authenticity, which is nice. She visits her home in Nunavut. And she fights a giant. And some shadows. This is a really good story, with a heavy focus on Inuit myth and culture. That’s presumably why Zub felt it was so important to bring in Innuksuk to consult, so he would get it right. I’m obviously not qualified to judge its authenticity, but it seems pretty authentic. It’s clear that Zub cared a lot about it. This story’s also actually a good indication of why it’s important to get diverse voices. The Taqriaqsuit are cool creatures I’d never heard of. I’d love to see more legendary creatures beyond the standard ones, from other cultures. I really liked this comic.

Shuri #3, by Nnedi Okorafor, Leonardo Romero, Jordie Bellaire, and Joe Sabino. Shuri is Groot.

Life of Captain Marvel #5, by Marguerite Stohl, Carlos Pacheco, Rafael Fonteriz, Marcio Menyz, Federico Blee, Marguerite Sauvage, and Clayton Cowles. Hmmmm. There’s a lot of retconning of Carol’s history here. Some of it, I don’t really like. It’s a reasonably well-told story, if a bit saccharine. Like I said, there’s just certain elements of the retcons I don’t like. Most notably, it had Carol dating Dr. Lawson, who was obviously Mar-Vell. The original stories had Carol immensely suspicious of Lawson, and while she and Mar-Vell had a bond, they didn’t date, as Mar-Vell had a thing with a nurse. And this retcon basically erases Nurse Una, and I’m not down with that. I don’t think Carol hooking up with Mar-Vell needed to be inserted into her history. Bleh.

Captain America #6, by Ta-Nehisi Coates, Leinil Francis Yu, Gerry Alanguilan, Sunny Gho, and Joe Caramagna. Alexa Lukin is pretty cool. And the plot goes in some really interesting directions. One thing I want to make note of, though: Aleksander Lukin is still possessed by the Red Skull, which makes it creepy when he kisses Alexa. Except that another scene has a character directly tell Alexa that Aleksander won’t return from the dead alone, suggesting that Alexa knew the Red Skull would still be in his head. That actually removes a lot of problems, by giving her more agency in continuing the relationship. I think back to Superior Spider-Man. Spider-Otto raped Anna-Maria. There’s no way around that. He raped her. He presented himself as someone he wasn’t, used her ignorance of the situation to seduce her. It was rape. Mystique routinely commits rape, for the same reason. Superhero comics have honestly kind of a bad history with stuff like that. Coates sidesteps a chunk of that by making Alexa aware that Red Skull is still in Aleksander’s head. So that’s good of him.

Exiles #11, by Saladin Ahmed, Javier Rodriguez, Alvaro Lopez, Munsta Vicente, and Joe Caramagna. Khan’s back, and she’s got her own team of Exiles. Including a skeletal Thor, which is kinda cool. The team includes Killmonger (Shuri), Iron Prince (who wears a Kang mask), X-2/3rds, and a mutated Captain Rogers. Good line-up for a counter-Exiles. And there’s some fun stuff here. Still, I can’t say I’m disappointed this series is ending.





























From → 2018, Uncategorized

  1. G'kar permalink

    West coat Avengers was fun. While I enjoy the Life of Captain Marvel mini as a whole I felt the last two issues weren’t as strong as the first three, but they were still good issue’s. Also, I have mixed feeling on the Marie being killed off, not sure it really severed the story. You know I’m kind of surprised that it wasn’t Louis who was killed since he and Carol kind of had a little bit of a romance going during this mini, and it seems writers like killing off Carol’s love interests a lot.

  2. Uncanny X-Men 6 is the best issue yet, but it’s also got a lot of problems. There’s the Jubilee thing you mentioned. There’s the fact that half of the X-Men jumping straight at X-Man are too smart to do that, knowing they wouldn’t stand a chance against overpowered X-Man. I feel like it’s the best flagship X-Men series we’ve had in years, but considering we’ve had Gold, Extraordinary (more the fault of the editors than the writer), that’s not saying much.

    Extermination 5 is a good comic, personally tainted to me by what might actually be the worst written X-23 line of the year. But considering she’s got a bit part, I won’t complain too much about that.

    The new Captain America series is good so far.

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