Take everything you know about X-Men comics from the past and just throw them out the window. Yes, they’ve been bad. Yes, they’ve been questionable. Is it weird that Cyclops ended up killing Professor X? Yes, it is, but let’s not focus on that right now. Uncanny X-Men is actually pretty good. Most surprising thing about the series is that it’s good despite the fact that it has so much stacked against it. For example, let’s break down the cast list of the current X-Men.
The X-Men consist of the following members:
- Magneto (leader)
- Archangel (although he’s just a shell that Psylocke psychically controls after she was forced to kill Warren several years before)
- Monet St. Croix
- Sabretooth (but he’s sworn off killing for the sake of killing)
This has problems written all over it, and yet, it works. It works so unbelievably well. The craziest part is that it works because none of them really trust one another. Psylocke trusts Monet because she’s known her since she was a child, but after learning she and Magneto kept it a secret from her that they’ve aligned with the Hellfire Club as the new White King and White Queen, she doesn’t doesn’t trust anyone, really. She doesn’t even really trust Archangel anymore because he’s no longer a shell puppet she can control, but he’s not entirely Warren Worthington III either. In a strange twist, she learns that the only one she can trust to not lie to her is Sabretooth, the reformed mass murderer.
In Issue #13, Magneto has sent them to investigate the “sleeper mutants” the Hellfire club discovered that the Someday Corporation was secretly experimenting on. With the Terrigen mists killing mutants, many (rightfully) feared for their lives and accepted Someday’s offer to let them sleep until the crisis passed. While they slept, they were experimenting on them, unbeknownst to the mutants inside the sleeper cells. When the X-Men arrive to try to free them, they are suddenly attacked by these sleepers who have all been brainwashed to attack them. They assume that Someday Corporation is behind it, but after they took one prisoner for questioning, they learn otherwise.
Most of this issue is told from Psylocke’s perspective as she wrestles with her decision to join the X-Men under Magneto’s leadership and her decision to stay. She joined because of her love for Warren. She didn’t want him to remain tarnished as Apocalypse’s horseman, and she didn’t want Magneto to ruin him further. But how much further can she go when she doesn’t trust anyone except for Sabretooth? How can she trust Magneto or Monet for 1) aligning with the Hellfire Club Inner Circle and 2) lying to her about it? Psylocke never had a good past with them, even though her family has always been members of the Club itself.
At least she does question Monet about the Club, which leads to this amazing panel as a response.
As entertaining as that particular quip is, the best panels are those with Psylocke’s realization that Magneto has no problem sacrificing one mutant, even though they are an endangered species, if it helps his achieve his goals. Psylocke is more interested in Professor X’s philosophy to save as many as possible, which includes not killing your prisoners during interrogation.
Of all the comics I subscribe to that are bi-weekly, I really wish Uncanny X-Men had such a schedule instead of monthly. This series is just that good, and aside from my comics partner has told me, liking this series is not a sign of Stockholm Syndrome. I honestly recommend it to all X-Men comic fans, and this issue has only sealed it for me.
Title: Uncanny X-Men #13
Author: Cullen Bunn
Artist: Greg Land
Publish Date: 09/21/2016
Acquired via Purchase