thru the ages
thru the ages
(Uncanny X-men #193, Chris Claremont/John Romita Jr/Dan Green)
This issue is a glorious mess of bad decisions, growing pains, and more bad decisions, (and Warpath!) and that’s what makes it enjoyable.
Even having read Excalibur before I got to the part where Rachel was formally introduced in Uncanny, I still underestimated how unstable she was at first (shame on me for underestimating Claremont, I guess). This was perfectly reasonable and expected considering the years of hell she had just escaped from. However, Xavier needed a telekinetic telepath on his team, so once again, major responsibility got heaped upon a mentally-unwell Summers’ kid under his care. Great job.
With bother Scott and Ororo gone, and in another stroke of PHD-level genius, Xavier put the responsibility of field leader on Nightcrawler, who was, what, only 21ish at the time and lacking both the experience and the confidence to handle the task (not everyone is a 16-year-old tactician here). I like that, as frustrated as he is with himself, Kurt listens to his teammates’ concerns and finds a creative compromise. This is something Kurt will carry over to Excalibur and improve upon as he gains more confidence in himself.
I especially like that Rachel stood up for herself and refused this completely reasonable request. It’s incredibly frustrating when you’re found in a position of having to let someone else down in order to take care of yourself. At the same time, I also don’t hold Rogue’s frustration here against her. It’s a stressful situation and Rachel isn’t making any sense to anyone who can’t read her thought bubbles. Again, she probably shouldn’t have even been there.
Anyway, this is one of my favorite exchanges between Kurt and Rachel and probably an important establishing moment for their friendship in the years to come.
Gambit: We both look very beautiful tonight.
Rogue: You know, if you’d just said that I looked beautiful, I would have said “so do you”.
Gambit: I couldn’t take that chance.
Dang this is one scrappy fight, and right off the bat the Brood are able to subsume the minds of both Rogue and Psylocke, though for some contrived reason, they don’t go so far as to implant them with Brood eggs. There better be a reasonable god damn explanation for this, because otherwise this is a Dr. Evil level fuck up right here. (Uncanny X-Men #233 – Sept 1988)
Fuck. This Brood fight isn’t like the last one where the X-Men traveled to the Brood home planet and exterminated the shit out of those alien fuckers like they were the god damned box elder bug infestation from my first apartment. This time the Brood invaded Earth and implanted Brood eggs into a number if mutants, essentially giving rise to Brood warriors with super powers. I’ll tell you what, after surviving the horrors of Mutant Massacre, this gang of X-Men may give about 10,000 less fucks about preserving sentient life than the team that fought the Brood the last time, but they are about to meet their match with this shit. (Uncanny X-Men #233 – Sept 1988)
Oh man, this is a great shot of my very favorite team, surrounded by a notorious enemy that is thirsty for revenge. Great artwork! (Uncanny X-Men #233 – Sept 1988)
Oh fuck!! Well this is what you fucking get, X-Men, for lollygagging around for 14 issues after an intergalactic space shark crashes on Earth. There’s already a full Brood invasion underway!!! I wonder if there was a communication disruption going on. Anyway, I think it’s pretty cool how the Brood infect a bunch of EMTs and police officers who are still sentient and have no idea that they are possessed, even though they start growing tentacles and shit and are jumping off buildings. It creates good tension. (Uncanny X-Men #232 – Aug 1988)
Bobby: You know, it’s at times like this that I really wish I’d listened to what the Professor told me.
Rogue: Why, what did he tell you?
Bobby: I don’t know, I didn’t listen.