Wednesday, February 29, 2012

X-MEN UNLIMITED #24 - September 1999

Search and Destroy
Credits: Joe Pruett (writer), Pascal Alixe (penciler), Koblish, Collazo, Ramos, Pepoy, Czop (inkers), Mark Bernardo (colors), Sharpefont & P. T. (letters)

Summary: An injured Japanese girl is taken to Dr. Cecilia Reyes’ office for treatment. Discovering that the girl was in a plane crash with her father, Cecilia and Wolverine search the woods for survivors. They soon learn that the plane was escaping Japanese authorities, who have accused the girl’s father, Inazo, of selling military secrets. The heroes rescue the survivors from Silver Samurai and his army of soldiers. Cecilia nurses Inazo’s business partner Tokitoshi back to health, only to have him turn on her when it’s revealed that he is the true traitor. Cecilia uses her powers to defend herself, then demands that everyone receive medical attention at her office before Tokitoshi is taken into custody.

Continuity Notes: According to Cecilia, her forcefield is an extension of her body that “still sends signals to my brain to alert me to the pain…but it does protect me from bodily harm.” This is the first time that I can recall a story suggesting that Cecilia actually feels pain when objects hit her bio-field. It seems to me that she would’ve been more whiney and obnoxious in her initial appearances if that were the case.

Review: Okay, perhaps Magneto Rex wasn’t entirely Joe Pruett’s fault. This isn’t so bad; not that the story isn’t filled with holes (Silver Samurai represents the Japanese government now? Fugitives escape Japan for…its ally, America? Their plane is flying over America’s east coast instead of its west?), but it’s structured well and Pruett manages to write plausible, cliché-free dialogue for most of the issue. It’s also nice to see Cecilia again, given the embarrassing way Marvel forced her out of the book during the previous year. Pruett seems to be hinting at Cecilia’s return to the team, as the story centers around Cecilia finding the inner strength to be the hero Wolverine believes her to be, and ends with a message about the importance of family. (Not that Cecilia’s X-Men “family” seemed too broken up over her departure, but that’s the state of the titles in the late ‘90s.) The art is provided by Pascal Alixe, whose style is about as far away from the Jim Lee and Joe Mad imitators of the day as you can get. His work is a strange amalgam of John Paul Leon and Steve Leialoha, and while it’s not always pretty, I would say it’s a step above X-Men Unlimited’s usual caliber of artists.

Credits: Joe Pruett (writer), Tom Raney (penciler), Holdredge, DeCastro, Perrotta, Martinez (inkers), Mark Bernardo (colors), Sharpefont & P. T. (letters)

Summary: Magneto meets with his cabinet: Quicksilver is given permission to free the Legacy Virus infected Mutates from their camps, Alda Huxley cautions against Genosha’s isolationism, and Phillip Moreau warns of a Magistrate uprising, while Fabian Cortez studies footage of Magneto’s initial appearance in Genosha. Magneto demands he leave the room, and then reflects on his new position.

Continuity Notes: There’s a brief hint of romantic feelings for Alda Huxley on Magneto’s behalf. Was this the reason why Marvel felt the need to insert her into Genosha’s new status quo?

Review: Oh, and now we’re back to being terrible. This is just as clunky and overwritten as the Magneto Rex miniseries it follows, which is a shame. It’s hard to believe the same writer is responsible for both stories in this comic, but for whatever reason, Pruett simply seems unable to produce readable Magneto/Genosha material.

Finally, the letters page reveals that the next issue begins X-Men Unlimited’s new direction. Accompanied by a Brett Booth pin-up, the editors ask readers to “expect stories that will be a part of the ongoing X-Men saga from over in the pages of Uncanny X-Men and X-Men.” Translation: “We know we’re filler. You know we’re filler. We know you know we’re filler. Maybe we can do something about that.” The plan doesn’t work, but I’ll give them points for at least acknowledging the problem.


Ad@1LtoN said...

In "Operation: Zero Tolerance", Cecilia tells Bobby in their first encounter at the police station she feels pain.

wwk5d said...

Yeah, I agree with Ad@1LtoN...she did mention that to Bobby, but it seems like Kelly and Seagle never picked up on it.

thinkingcog said...

Yeah I always felt that that was part of her power from her introduction and to be honest it always struck me as more interesting than just a generic force-field power...

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