Wednesday, October 10, 2012

ASTONISHING X-MEN #2 - October 1999



The Trouble with Mannites
Credits: Howard Mackie (writer), Brandon Peterson w/Brett Booth (pencilers), Tim Townsend w/Dan Panosian (inkers), Liquid!/Buccellato/Kubina (colors), Jon Babcock (letters)


Summary: Nina senses that Darco of the Mannites is undergoing “the changing” and needs help. Phoenix, Wolverine, and X-Man travel with Nina to the abandoned carnival where the Mannites are hiding. Cyclops, Archangel, and Cable stay behind to face Death if he reappears. Death does return, and battles them only long enough to intercept a telepathic message sent by Phoenix. Death teleports away to finish his mission. The team flies to Phoenix’s location, unaware Death’s snuck on top of the Blackbird.

Continuity Notes: “The changing” is some sort of violent metamorphosis that the Mannites must go through. Darco’s leaves him in a mysterious cocoon.

Review: More fun with Mannites. Yay. If the first issue didn’t make it obvious, this miniseries is largely time-killer. The big event is of course saved for the last issue, leaving the reader with endless scenes of filler starring the Mannites and an incompetent group of X-Men trying to fight Death. To further insult the idea that this series was meant to be “important” in any way, half of the pages are handled by Brett Booth, who isn’t a match for Brandon Peterson even when he’s slumming. It was impossible at the time to find anyone willing to defend this series, and I can’t imagine a second reading would make anyone more favorable towards it. This is a shameless cash grab, only meant for the most hardcore of completists or the most susceptible to Marvel’s marketing tactics.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

I tried to reread this series but couldn't make it past the second issue. So bad, so pointless, so ugly.

- Mike Loughlin

Kazekage said...

So much of what was wrong with X-Men comics at the end of the millennium can be summed up in this comics--chasing their tails with random plot points no one asked for further exploration of (the bloody Mannites) and a lot of crashing bashing and smashing that adds up to precious little.

On the other hand, I give them all credit for the big reveal being kept a secret.

Anonymous said...

See, I think I may be the only person who actually liked the Mannites lol

Well, to be specific, I liked the one from the post-Onslaught one-shot with Xavier (written by Larry Hama, drawn by Randy Green, for the life of me I can't remember the name of the girl or the issue).

But I remember I liked her, she was nice and sympathetic. The other Mannites were garbage though lol

Daniel AH said...

Howard Mackie or Chuck Austen? Who is the worst writer in comics?

Kabe

Dan Lichtenberg said...

@Anonymous-
Well, to be specific, I liked the one from the post-Onslaught one-shot with Xavier (written by Larry Hama, drawn by Randy Green, for the life of me I can't remember the name of the girl or the issue).


That would be Nina from Onslaught: Epilogue. I liked that one too.

@Daniel AH-
Howard Mackie or Chuck Austen? Who is the worst writer in comics?


Austen. I still bought every issue of X-Men he did, much as I hated him. It wasn't until years later that I decided the line had gotten too stupid and dropped out all together. So yeah, I was there for all of it and I still can't remember anything else as inept as that. Including Onslaught.

@Kazekage-
So much of what was wrong with X-Men comics at the end of the millennium can be summed up in this comics--chasing their tails with random plot points no one asked for further exploration of


Not to mention just bizarre plots. Xavier "disbanding" the X-Men while secretly trying to root out the traitor? What is this, the freaking Z'nox again? Why would he do that? And next issue's "death"... oh dear lord. How did they expect anyone to believe that based on what happened on panel? Made zero sense in the context of that character and that universe. I can't believe I'm even concerned about spoilers, either, but I'm holding off on names on the vague notion that someone out there hasn't read it and will be genuinely surprised. I think I'm getting soft.

Teebore said...

This is a shameless cash grab, only meant for the most hardcore of completists

That was me!

This, yeah, this was not so good. The Mannites, ugh.

@Daniel: Austen, hands down. Mackie's X-Men stuff was pretty bad, but he did some decent Spidey work. Pretty much everything Austen has done was awful.

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