The X-Men Vs. The X-Men! (Again)
Credits: Jim Lee (plot/pencils), Scott Lobdell (script), Bob Wiacek (inks), Lois Buhalis (letters), Marie Javins (colors)
Professor Xavier combines powers with Psylocke to break Mojo’s influence over the X-Men. The team breaks into Mojo’s control booth, and Longshot rips Mojo open with a sword. With Mojo defeated, Xavier announces that he senses an unborn child inside Dazzler. The team celebrates but feels uneasy about giving Mojo’s successor, his clone Mojo II, the highest ratings ever.
Mojo II (The Sequel) is a “failed” clone of Mojo, who claims that he was born with compassion for all people. I assume he was the mysterious leader of the Pirate Network seen in this year’s annuals.
Longshot suggests “Shatterstar” as the name of his baby with Dazzler. This lead to years of speculation that Longshot was Shatterstar’s father, which doesn’t really fit in with his claims that he was created in a lab. When Dazzler shows up a few years later, she’s not pregnant and the X-Men just decide to respect her privacy. I don’t think there’s ever been an in-story explanation for what happened to her baby.
The X-Men break free of the villain’s influence and win the day. It’s pretty generic stuff, which is probably why the dialogue suggests that this actually might not be a clear victory for the team. There’s nothing trully bad about it, it’s just not very interesting. This is Jim Lee’s final issue of the X-Men, and he doesn’t exactly go out on a high note. Some of the pages look nice, but others looked rushed and sloppy. If you want a nice example of how inconsistent it is, check out the two page spread on pages 20 and 21. Rogue is nicely drawn, probably one of Lee’s best versions of the character, while Dazzler looks like a pupil-less alien with a freakishly small waist.
Credits: Scott Lobdell (writer), Mark Texeira (artist), Lois Buhalis (letters)
Maverick weakens Warhawk’s metal skin, and causes the energy inside his body to explode. Before the explosion, Ryking tells Maverick that he has no idea “how the Xavier File wound up in Charles’ possession”. With Ryking and Warhawk both apparently dead, Maverick leaves.
Maverick says that he wishes he still had his mutant power
Warhawk blames the X-Men for turning him into a monster.
More mindless action. I wouldn’t mind it so much if the characters and conflicts were clearly detailed. Instead, everything’s a vague mystery (Warhawk’s never even named in the story), so it’s impossible to care. This story apparently ties into the next two issues, which just introduce more mysteries that are never resolved.