I was in my comic shop the other day, and they mentioned that they had been neglecting to order the trade volumes of X-Men for me, and that they would rectify that right away. To which I said, wait guys, I’ve only read like four of the TWELVE single issues I purchased, let’s wait to see if I even like this series before we go ordering more.
The verdict is still out, as I’ve only read a couple more, but let’s talk about those today!
X-Men #5: “Battle of the Atom, Part 3”
I had a feeling something was wrong when I picked this up and couldn’t recall reading “Battle of the Atom” parts 1 and 2. But, you know, whatever, it’s pretty pictures and I’m intrigued. The title page gives some background on what happened already, namely some crazy-pants time-travel including X-Men past, present, and future, and also Jean and Scott are on the run, which is what’s happening in this issue.
Even with all that info, the issue started out rough. Jean is in a mask? Some young hotshot walking Xavier is throwing smug looks around? Yada yada, chasing runaways, runaways run, runaways get caught, runaways escape due to infighting among the chasers.
I’ve already had a lot of trouble with X-Men due to the fact that I am apparently supposed to recognize all X-Men on sight, and this is even worse because the story is crossing through several current X-Men titles, all of them probably read by people with better facial recognition and more experience with the cast than I have. There are all these “reveals” that left me baffled and a lot of things I can tell that I’m missing, I just don’t know what exactly.
But the pictures are really pretty, and the story is actually sufficiently exciting for all the blah blahs I did up there, and I totally wanted to know what happens next. BUT but, of course X-Men #6 is part 7 of this story, because they want me to buy all the things, so I’m going to have to see if they’ve collected this somewhere useful so I can read a whole dang story. Oh, marketing, you vile beast.
X-Men #7: “Muertas, Part One of Six”
I skipped over #6 for the reasons stated above, and I had my fingers crossed that there weren’t going to be any references to that storyline in this issue. If there were, they were subtle, so fantastic! This issue opens up with a few more unlikely boobs than I’d like (the fact that powers that be don’t understand that ladies might be interested in reading an all-ladies X-Men is another beef I have with this series), but it also opens up with a long and useful introduction to our new villain, Lady Deathstrike, who seems pretty badass so let’s do this!
Speaking of facial recognition, immediately after we meet Lady Deathstrike, she shows up at the Jean Grey School and I was like, oh, intriguing, is she some kind of double agent mutant with another mutant’s consciousness inside her that is nuts! And then it turns out that this particular large-boobed, vaguely ethnic, long-black-haired woman has her hair parted on the other side and is therefore a completely different person called Monet. At least I can tell them apart from Karima (whose long black hair is longer than theirs), because Karima is the focus of this story.
In the first storyline of this series Karima was, like, in a coma or something? And then she got possessed by a technology demon because she has tech in her? Or something? Anyway, now it seems that possession has been good to her, because she’s no longer comatose and also is returning to her normal not-an-X-man state, except Lady Deathstrike does not know that and is coming to get her for her precious precious technology. Good thing she doesn’t know about Monet, who is apparently equally badass.
This series is killing me. I love that there are lots of these badass ladies, so many that “calling in muscle” still does not involve dudes. I love that these ladies are strong in different ways, but I don’t love that I can’t tell many of them apart to save my life. And I can’t stand the cheesecake, including the last page of this comic that primarily shows a woman wearing half a pair of pants (the right half [no, really]) and some kind of rib-breaking corset. At least these lady heroes wear sensible shoes. Maybe someday one will get on the burkini train.
How about y’all? What are you reading this weekend?