Or – “They Say That Breaking Up Is Hard To Do…”

The fallout from Avengers Vs. X-Men has been pretty colossal, so it’s easy to forget that one of the casualties was the long-term (for X-Men, anyway) relationship between Cyclops and the White Queen.  Awkwardly, both halves of the couple are part of the Uncanny team now, and you have to know that the question will come up sooner rather than later…  What happens now?  Your Major Spoilers review awaits!

UncannyXMen2CoverUNCANNY X-MEN #2
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Penciler: Chris Bachalo
Inker(s): Tim Townshend, Jaime Mendoza, Al Vey & Victor Olazaba
Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Colorist: Chris Bachalo
Editor: Nick Lowe
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $3.99

Previously, Uncanny X-Men:  Cyclops has gone rogue, and has created a team to collect the new mutants triggered in the wake of the Phoenix’s return to Earth.  S.H.I.E.L.D. wants to take him down, and they’ve got a strong shot at it, since one of his own people has turned informant on him, licky boom boom down.  Is there any way this won’t turn bad?

THE POLITICS OF MUTATING.

So, last issue kind of got my hopes up as to what this book might end up being, with both Bendis and Bachalo delivering work that played against the expectations that I have of them (which would be, in order, excessive verbosity and big-eyed manga girls in shockingly low-cut outfits.)  We open this time with Emma Frost in a shockingly low-cut outfit, with special focus given to her enormous eyes, as she waxes excessively verbose about the loss of her powers and the various emotions she’s having about it…  Emma reveals that ALL of the Phoenix 5’s powers are broken after the events of AvX, leaving her unable to hear the thoughts of others, as well as randomly broadcasting her OWN thoughts to by-standers.  This proves less-than-ideal when Cyclops walks up and hears her thinking about him, leading to a five-page sequence where he reveals that she’s an EXCELLENT teacher (something that I don’t recall ever really having come up before) and the duo talks and talks and talks about their relationship before deciding they’re not getting back together.  Taylor Swift then wrote a song about them, and Illyana Rasputin expressed great relief that they’re not a couple anymore…

AAANNND THERE IT IS…

More talky-talky ensues, with exposition mixed in, as we meet the new students of the New Charles Xavier school, see the layout of their headquarters, and get thumbnail sketches of the personalities of the four new mutants (one of whom is mockingly labeled ‘Goldball’ in this ish, which will probably end up sticking.)  The pacing here is infuriating, with page after page of characters blatantly explaining their feelings and expectations, with only Magik seeming anything like the character she was before.  In deference to one of the new kids, Cyclops takes the team to her hometown on the Gold Coast of Australia so that she can explain to her mother that she’s not dead, allowing Magneto to call in and betray them.  The issue ends with Cyclops turning and seeing one of the most horrifying sights in the Marvel Universe:  Carol Danvers!!!  And, also, the other seven core movie-version Avengers, including the armored and very angry-looking Indestructible Hulk, a group of superheroes who clearly out-power his super-team by a factor of about five.  This… is very bad.

BOTTOM LINE: VERY TALKY…

After issue #1, I had some very high hopes for this book, that it would avoid both the traps of being a relaunched X-title and the excesses of its creators.  While I still enjoyed this issue, there was a marked decline in my enjoyment this time around, both due to the establishment of familiar elements, a lot of exposition, and a general sense that the plot is in neutral for 20 pages.  Even the expectation of next month’s fighty-fighty feels a big familiar, given that this books spun out of a comic that was actually TITLED Avengers Vs. X-Men.  In short, Uncanny X-Men #2 disappointed on multiple fronts, with the art slipping from last issue’s strong start, and a veritable sea of Bendis dialogue to wade through, earning what I wish was much more than 2.5 out of 5 stars overall.  It’s still not a bad comic book, but it’s not the book that I wanted to read coming out of #1, which is almost more disappointing than just having a blah comic book reading experience…

Rating: ★★½☆☆

DID YOU READ THIS ISSUE? RATE IT!

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The Author

Matthew Peterson

Matthew Peterson

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture!

And a nice red uniform.

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5 Comments

  1. February 28, 2013 at 8:52 pm — Reply

    I, er, kinda liked this one a LOT. Even more than Issue 1, which I also liked. I’ll grant you Emma does seem a little rougher than she was pre-AVX, less White Queeny, but other than that.. it was a good read. It was a pause that let me take a breather and a good look at the characters here, and the artwork, I loved. There was something very immersive about this issue that I REALLY enjoyed.

    • February 28, 2013 at 8:56 pm — Reply

      Hence why we say mileage varies… :)

      • February 28, 2013 at 11:28 pm — Reply

        Hee. I knew someone’d say that.
        I’ve just become very fond of this comic and hated the idea of seeing it undefended on my favorite comic book site ever.

    • March 1, 2013 at 12:19 pm — Reply

      I fully agree.. this is actually probably my favorite issue of an X title in quite awhile! Even the less White Queeny aspect fits with everything that’s happened over the past couple of years with the mutant universe ;)

  2. Navarre
    March 1, 2013 at 9:04 am — Reply

    Concerning Magik, wikipedia says:

    “It has since been revealed that unlike her teammates whose powers have gone out of control following the lost of the fragments of the Phoenix Force, her powers have actually increased and she is now able to channel the energies of the Limbo dimension.”

    Is this true? I don’t understand what they mean about “channeling Limbo”.

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