Sunday, October 24, 2010

Chronological X-Men - Part 07 Review


(The Uncanny)X-Men #30 The Warlock Wakes!-

This time around the X-Men battle ‘The Warlock,’ a science/magic-based mutant who claims to be none other than Merlin from King Arthur’s time period. Now this is something I know about from future events in the Marvel Universe, so I know that he’s not really Merlin but an immortal from a different time period that fights the X-Men a few times, but spends most of his time in the Thor and Doctor Strange books. Speaking of Thor and Doctor Strange, the flashbacks in this issue features scenes from previous Thor and Journey into Mystery issues. This is pretty much a stand alone issue that really doesn’t do anything at all for the overall plot of the series, there are a few throw away comments about Factor Three, but that’s about all we get this time out.

(The Uncanny)X-Men #31 We Must Destroy… the Cobalt Man!-

A few more returns here, Vera, Zelda and Ted are all back; ‘Bernard the Poet’ is back as well and he’s sort of becoming a running gag here, other than that I don’t really see him contributing much to the plot at all. We also get two new characters, first Ted’s brother Ralph – who ends up becoming Cobalt Man, a sort of evil version of Iron-Man, and an old friend of Warren’s Candy Southern. We get some things resolved here, we finally find out why Ted pushes himself so hard, and there is somewhat of a resolve to the whole Scott-Warren-Ted/Jean thing. It was a little odd to see Charles play matchmaker between Jean and Scott, but that’s beside the point. Finally it seems that Ted has learned that Jean is really Marvel Girl. This issue was alright, but I'm kind of tired of this theme where the bad guys from other books pop up here in an X-Men book. Bring back the Brotherhood, The Sentinels, Magneto, Juggernaut or the Mimic back- this is an X-Men title, I don't want to see characters from Fantastic Four, Thor, Iron-Man or Spider-Man show up unless it's for a major event. Just don't put them here to have them pop in and pop out serving no point other than to fill the gap before they start the next storyline.

(The Uncanny)X-Men #32 Beware the Juggernaut, my son!-
(The Uncanny)X-Men #33 Into the Crimson Cosmos!-

Vera, Zelda, Candy, Bernard the Poet, Cain Marko/Juggernaut and in a way Factor Three all return to the book with this issue. We also get a few new characters in the form of Dr. Strange, Xorak the Outcast and the Ancient One. Once again we get another series of flashbacks and for what is either the third or fourth time we see Charles’ life in danger yet he takes the time to stop and tell a story. It’s a little odd this time because it’s a story that has nothing to do with him, yet at the same time it makes sense because he has had access to Cain’s mind. This issue also marks Bobby’s 18th birthday, so now the ‘youngest X-Man’ is now technically an adult. It does make me wonder exactly how big the age gap was supposed to have been considering Jean is in college and Warren tells Candy that they are taking ‘college level’ courses, so that puts the two of them between 18-20. Also Jean tells Candy that she’d love it if she enrolled at the school so she wouldn’t be the only girl there anymore. I know this was just Jean paying lip-service to Candy, but it hasn’t officially been said that Jean left Metro College and returned to the Xavier Institute, yet her comment implies that she has done just that. Through the plot it is made a point to pair off the X-Men Warren with Candy, Bobby with Zelda, Hank is with Vera and by default leaves Jean and Scott to pair off with themselves. Taking aside everything (that even someone who has only heard of the X-Men in passing) known about Jean and Scott’s romantic pairing, it isn’t that much of a shock to see them paired off like that since in the previous issue the Ted-Warren-Scott/Jean love triangle turned love square had been narrowed down to just Jean and Scott. The issue ends with the X-Men returning to the mansion only to find that Factor Three has abducted Charles which I’m sure sets up the plot for the next few issues at least. One thing I found to be a bit odd is the fact that the reason the door in the basement was locked was because Charles had been keeping Cain in there. That’s odd because it means that basically Charles has been holding Cain (even though he was in a coma) against his will for some time now. The thing that they use to explain it is that Charles had convinced the government to give him custody of Cain, which makes no sense either because that would mean that either Charles had used his abilities to wipe the minds of the people holding Cain and ‘convincing’ them into letting him keep his step-brother, or the government knows that the identity of the Juggernaut is really Cain Marko and Charles went through the proper legal channels to obtain custody of his step-brother. That doesn’t seem too likely because that would put Charles’ identity out into the world. I guess that could be done considering it still wouldn’t connect Charles or Cain to the X-Men, but it would make it easier to connect the dots if someone bothered to. So this has Charles acting a bit out of character because the most likely scenario means that Charles mentally manipulated multiple people into basically kidnapping and holding Cain Marko prisoner in the basement of the Xavier Institute.

(The Uncanny)X-Men #30 The Warlock Wakes!: B-
(The Uncanny)X-Men #31 We Must Destroy… the Cobalt Man!: B-
(The Uncanny)X-Men #32 Beware the Juggernaut, my son!: A-
(The Uncanny)X-Men #33 Into the Crimson Cosmos!: B+

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