Uncanny X-Men #1 Review

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Disassembled. It is a phrase with history in the Marvel Universe. The last time it was used to describe a major event, the Avengers were changed forever. Old legends died and new legends were born. Now the term has been hung on the collective heads of the X-Men, and that can’t be good. Let’s see how it starts in UNCANNY X-MEN #1, on shelves now!

Uncanny X-Men #1 ReviewUNCANNY X-MEN #1 REVIEW

Writers: Ed Brisson, Kelly Thompson, Matthew Rosenberg
Artist: Mahmud A. Asrar, Mark Bagley, Mirko Colak
Cover: Leinil Francis Yu
Publisher:  Marvel Comics
Release Date: November 14th, 2018
Cover Price:  $7.99

Previously in UNCANNY X-MEN: The problem with where to begin with the X-Men is more a question of which X-Men? In Astonishing X-Men, Havok has made a deal with the Reavers to free his team from O.N.E. In X-Men Blue, the original, teen X-Men have been joined by the Mutant X universe Bloodstorm and the Ultimate Universe son of Wolverine, Jimmy Hudson. In X-Men Red, her team prepare to fight Cassandra Nova. In X-Men Gold… well you get the picture.

I GOT 99 PROBLEMS AND AN X-MAN IS ONE…

Nightmares don’t start scary. They normally seem like normal dreams until the horror begins to show through the cracks, the corners you can’t focus on. What is it like for a telepathic mutant? Pretty much the same, but the repercussions can be greater. That’s how it is for Jean Gray as she dreams of Jamie Madrox, the Multiple Man, as he appears and asks, “Where’s Kitty Pryde?” But before he can explain the reasoning for his question, a pair of metal claws pop through his forehead and X-23 appears. Then Jean is lunged into a red world of battle and death, her teammates fighting for their lives amidst piles of dead and fighting Madrox clones. But Jean isn’t sleeping, she’s just had a vision while in the kitchen of the Xavier Institute for Mutant Education and Outreach. Her fellow X-Men are confused by her exclamation, but nothing is to be done, they are X-Men after all.

High above the skies of North Carolina, Kitty Pryde is taking her young team of mutants on a mission to battle a mutant named Forearm. As the young team, once members of the New Mutants and Young X-Men, prepare for battle, Kitty begins to uncontrollably phase through the console of the plane, causing it to lose power, then she is gone. The students, unable to escape the plane, crash into the very pharmaceutical building they had been going to save.

Across the world in Africa, Storm and Beast investigate the sudden, unnatural rainfall which has afflicted the area, causing a lake to spring up in the middle of the Kalahari Desert. To add to the odd nature of the occurrence, Storm cannot affect the storm and Beast confirms the lake, only a few hours old, has multiple fish and plant species living in it.

Back in North Carolina, Kitty’s team of x-men are under attack by the Mutant Liberation Front. It seems that the pharmaceutical company they were going to protect is producing a “vaccine” for mutants, to cure them of their “affliction.” While in Manhattan, Senator Ashton Allen is speaking against mutants as Jean Grey and a team of X-Men watch from the crowd. It looks like all is well as Jean prepares to give a counter argument to the Senators rhetoric, but then Jamie Madrox appears, asking the question, “Where is Kitty Pryde?” Moments later, a mob of seemingly deranged Madroxes attack the crowd, all asking the same question, forcing the X-Men into action.

But where is Kitty? And did the Senator just disappear as well?

All of that action, and that’s only the first part of the issue.

The second half of the issue is called “What Tomorrow Brings” and is a three part story of what was happening in the time leading up to Multiple Man appearing at the Manhattan City Hall. Bishop, Jean Grey and Armor and Anole are the focus of each chapter, with them all intertwining to tell a tale of warning for future events.

THE STORM ON THE HORIZON

To be honest, I was skeptical of this issue. First off, the price. At $7.99 I could pick up almost any two other comics on the shelves. Also, it’s X-Men. Once upon a time, I loved the X-Men. I grew up on Claremont & Cockrum and later Lee and Claremont. But eventually, it seemed there were so many changes so fast nothing stuck. I fell off the books as a regular reader and would only stick my head in to check the temperature occasionally. That said, I think this is a great place to return to.

I have no real idea what Disassembled will be about. I do know it is a 10 part, weekly storyline of which the very name denotes major changes. I also know this title has given me the feeling that the X-Men have evolved very well. There is a feeling that they have actually lived in their time. Writers Ed Brisson (Old Man Logan, Peter Panzerfaust), Matthew Rosenberg (Secret Warriors, The Punisher) and Kelly Thompson (Jem and the Holograms, Hawkeye) have succeeded in making the team feel as if they have grown as individuals and tactically, not just in roster. There is a familiarity to the dialogue which denotes old friends. It isn’t the “I’m to original, snappy, and sarcastic for you” dialogue which has been seeping into so many books over the past few years, but conveys an honest feel. This is how you talk to friends. The artwork by Mahmuf A. Asrar (Dynamo 5, Supergirl) succeeds in giving a familiar yet different look to the story. Everyone is as you expect them, and even the visual changes are not jarring. His panels are well thought out and dynamic, and it becomes part of the story.

Each of the writers also take a chapter of the “What Tomorrow Brings” story, with Thompson doing duty on Part Two and the Epilogue. Rosenberg tale of Bishop, with illustrations by Mirko Colak (Red Skull, Unholy Grail) take me back to the back-up features in the old Classic X-Men title. I honestly thought I was reading a Barry Windsor-Smith illustrated tale, until you start to notice the small differences. It is moving, and has a look that draws you in. The Jean Grey chapter by Thompson and Ibraim Roberson (Weapon X, Old Man Logan) is excellent as well. While Roberson has a little more of a rounded feel to his lines, it is enjoyable to view. For the Brisson scripted Armor and Anole tale and the Epilogue by Thompson, fan favorite Mark Bagley (Ultimate Spider-Man, Thunderbolts) delivers the cement to the story, grounding book in a look and feel that has become so familiar to readers over the years.

BOTTOM LINE: A PART ONE AS IT SHOULD BE DONE

Take note future writers and creators, this is how you should be starting off a major storyline. You use all the tools and characters at your disposal, propose a mystery, and then tie it all with a bow, then put a bomb in the box. The cliffhanger in the first tale received an audible exclamation of “DUDE!” from me, and was a complete surprise. This is a storyline I will keep up with, if for no other reason than to experience this wonderful creative team some more.

UNCANNY X-MEN #1 sets up a powerful mystery, then changes the rules on the cliffhanger. A strong book by a strong team.

Uncanny X-Men #1

87%
87%
A Powerful Mystery

Take note future writers and creators, this is how you should be starting off a major storyline. You use all the tools and characters at your disposal, propose a mystery, and then tie it all with a bow, then put a bomb in the box. The cliffhanger in the first tale received an audible exclamation of “DUDE!” from me, and was a complete surprise. This is a storyline I will keep up with, if for no other reason than to experience this wonderful creative team some more.
UNCANNY X-MEN #1 sets up a powerful mystery, then changes the rules on the cliffhanger. A strong book by a strong team.

  • Writing
    9
  • Art
    9
  • Coloring
    8
  • User Ratings (3 Votes)
    4.6
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About Author

Back in February of 2008, Stacy Baugher wrote his first article for Major Spoilers and started a solid run of work that would last for over two years. He wrote the first series of Comic Casting Couch articles as well as multiple Golden Age Hero Histories, reviews and commentaries. After taking a hiatus from all things fandom he has returned to the Major Spoilers fold. He can currently be found on his blog, www.stacybaugher.com , were he post progress on his fiction work as well as his photography and life in general, and on Twitter under the handle @stacybaugher . If you're of a mind, he also takes on all comers with the under the Xbox Live Gamertag, Lost Hours. He currently lives in Clinton, Mississippi with his understanding wife, and two kids.

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