Thursday, October 18, 2007

X-MEN #11 – August 1992

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.

Continuity Notes
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.

Continuity Notes
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.

1 comment:

Cove West said...

Quite a whimper for Lee to go out on. Byrne leaves on DoFP and Kitty Alone, Cockrum on the Phoenix Saga (1st run) and the Brood Saga (2nd run), Smith on UXM #175, JRJr. on the Massacre, and Silvestri on the Siege Perilous and the Muir X-Men. Jim Lee leaves on a Mojo story. A Mojo Sequel story.

Looking back on it, Lee left when Claremont did. Everything after that was a shadow of his former self, either because he was overstretched (he was plotting XM and UXM, as well as starting Image) or because he was simply uninspired. Ultimately, as much as I loved his X-work, I can't say I'm sorry to see Lee go. His de facto control of the franchise was a hindrance to Lobdell and Nicieza, and the destabilization he wrought on the franchise (in forcing Claremont out and his own abrupt departure, Lee essentially kiboshed two showrunners in two years) was disastrous. Then again, his absence allowed Bob Harras to gain more and more direct control, so mixed bag.

Didn't a later X-FORCE story reveal Shatterstar to be an escaped mental patient or something? Were there contests in the X-Men bullpen to see who could come up with the most absurd origins?

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