Posted on November 15, 2012 AT 07:26am
The X-Men have been though quite a bit over the last several years, with 99% of their race being wiped out, members dying, and some lackluster adaptations. While their evolution has been incredibly complicated, the consequences of AvX has placed things in a situation more dire than they have ever been before. Cyclops has become a terrifying revolutionary over the years, and his friends and teammates are not convinced that he’s in the right, especially after certain recent events during AvX.
To put an end to Cyclops’ tirade without confronting him directly (which veterans such as Storm believe will trigger a larger conflict), the X-Men, Beast in particular, do something very few had though of before: make Cyclops talk some sense into himself. This premise is the base of All-New X-Men, which gives Brian Michael Bendis the opportunity to start writing an X-Men title after already scarring the franchise before even starting page one. He sends Beast back in time to convince the young, wistful kid that Scott Summers was to confront the bitter zealot that Scott Summers has become in an effort to prevent the genocide of the mutant race.
This was a pretty ridiculous sounding plot when it was first revealed, but in execution, it’s an interesting and heartbreaking tale. The people who love Cyclops more than any other can’t stand to see what he’s become; thus, needing to find a way to stop their friend without triggering a massacre. Time-travel seemed like a cop-out at first, but after reading the opening issue, it’s the only option that makes any sense. Making time-travel seem not only plausible, but the best realistic option is something that is difficult to pull off. It still seems a bit silly, but Bendis takes the challenge on full force and blows it out of the water, with emphasis on the portion taking place in the past, which occurs during one of the most critical moments of the young team’s career. Despite being in the comic book industry a long time, Bendis is continuing to prove time and time again that he’s one of the best in the industry.
Stuart Immonen, who did the pencil work on the book, takes on the oldest images in X-Men continuity and makes them seem as fresh as the events happening in the present, with inker Wade von Grawbadger and color artist Marte Garcia adding depth and character to all the X-Men, veterans and newcomers alike. This books looks beautiful, especially during the scenes in the team’s past. Hank McCoy, in particular, looks more realistic than he’s ever been depicted before in his pre-blue period.
Summary: This book started off as an interesting but somewhat-ridiculous concept, and turned into an extremely interesting and exciting ride that keeps the reader wanting more. The story is well written and looks terrific, combining some of the best in the Marvel Comics stable and teaming them together for a fresh look at the original Children of the Atom, as well as putting them into contrast with the war-torn mutants they eventually become. The dynamic had ever the opportunity to fall flat on its face, but barely even stumbled as it went along the beginnings of what looks to be a roller-coaster journey.
- THE GOOD: Exciting Story, Terrific Artwork.
- THE BAD: Concept Still Seems Far-Fetched
- THE UGLY: N/A
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