Wednesday, October 3, 2007

X-MEN #9 – June 1992

The Not So Big Easy
Credits: Jim Lee (plot & pencils), Scott Lobdell (script), Jim Lee & Art Thibert (inks), Tom Orzechowski & Lois Buhalis (lettering), Joe Rosas (coloring)

The X-Men battle the Brood and the possessed Ghost Rider. During their fight, the floor caves in and they fall into an underground labyrinth. Jubilee and Rogue discover various Guild members are being preserved by the Brood in a hidden chamber. They explain that the Brood are after the children of the Thieves and Assassins Guilds. Pyslocke senses another presence inside Ghost Rider, and enters the Astral Plane to sever his link with the Brood. Bella Donna joins her, and sacrifices her life to kill the Brood possessing Ghost Rider.

Continuity Notes
The Brood claim that children of the Guilds have been “programmed” over the past several generations to develop powers. Gambit is surprised to see that Bella Donna also has powers. She later says that she came by them accidentally.

Gambit’s accent is now officially ridiculous. I counted four “dat”s, four “de”s and three “dis”s.

First X-Force does a story about the World Trade Center blowing up that doesn’t show any casualties, now X-Men does a story with a “labyrinth that stretches for miles beneath New Orleans”. Back in 2005, we were all reminded that New Orleans is right at, and below, sea level. It’s like the x-books are taking a tour of early 21st century tragedies and making all kinds of unsettling factual errors. I half-expect someone to comment about how we won’t have to worry about Iraq again.

The Ghost Rider/Brood storyline continues, and should really stop with this issue, but it’s continued into another Ghost Rider issue. The art has improved since the previous Omega Red storyline, and the amount of plot holes has dropped, so it’s hard to really trash this issue. In retrospect, this storyline looks worse than it probably is because of the characters it introduces. We actually see some of the other members of Gambit’s Guild in this issue, and they’re all generic looking guys with stupid accents and aerobic headbands. Bella Donna continues to display “mysterious” powers, and then gets a rushed death scene. She’s revived a year later in the Gambit mini-series and stays on the periphery of the x-titles for years. I don't think anyone ever succeeded in making these characters really work, although Fabian Nicieza came close with Gambit's first ongoing series.

Link: Dave Campbell's unique take on this issue.

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