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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

X-amining Uncanny X-Men #163

"Rescue Mission"
November 1982

In a Nutshell 
The X-Men escape from the Brood home world. 

Writer: Chris Claremont
Artist: Dave Cockrum
Inker: Bob Wiacek
Letterer: Joe Rosen
Colorist: Bob Sharen
Editor: Louise Jones
Editor-in-Chief: Jim Shooter

Plot
As the Brood experiement on Carol Danvers, performing evolutionary modifications and altering her physiology, Wolverine sneaks into the palace and frees her. Back on Earth, Havok and Corsair teleport onto the grounds where the mansion is being rebuilt, confirming for Moira and Polaris that the X-Men and Lilandra have been kidnapped by the Brood, the price of an alliance which has given Deathbird the Shi'ar throne. Corsair departs with the Starjammers, determined to either rescue or avenge his son. A galaxy away, Cyclops awakens from a dream in which the X-Men transform into Brood to find Storm similarly entranced. He awakens her, and with the Brood's illusion fading, they encounter Wolverine and Carol. Freeing the rest of the X-Men, the team splits up, with half going to rescue Lilandra while the rest try to board Lilandra's starship, docked just outside the atmosphere of the planet.


Cyclops' group is attacked by Brood, including the Queen, whom Wolverine is determined to kill, despite Cyclops' protests. Meanwhile, Storm flies Nightcrawler and Kitty as high into the atmosphere as she can, with Nightcrawler teleporting himself and Kitty the rest of the way. As Nightcrawler clings to the hull of the ship, holding his breath and slowly freezing, Kitty phases inside and battles a Brood before opening the airlock for Nightcrawler. Back at the palace, Carol frees Lilandra, and just as Wolverine is about to kill the Queen, they are teleported aboard Lilandra's ship. The X-Men race away from the planet, realizing it's only a matter of time before the Brood catch up, little realizing they are already being targeted by another ship. 

Firsts and Other Notables
The Brood Queen is seen for the first time, though she's essentially just a larger-than-normal Brood. 


Back on Earth, in preparation for the upcoming New Mutants spinoff, the X-Mansion is being rebuilt, the Bermuda Island base effectively abandoned following the X-Men's kinapping in issue #161. It's not mentioned who is paying for the mansion's repairs; a lack of funds was one of the reasons cited for moving to the island base in the first place.  


Wolverine nicknames the Brood home world "Sleazeworld" in this issue.

On stands at the same time as this issue, Rogue follows up her appearance in Uncanny X-Men #158 by taking on Dazzler and Angel in Dazzler #22. Not worth it's own post, but given her future role in the book, worth mentioning the appearance, and the fact that she's still in full-on villain mode. 

A Work in Progress
As Wolverine arrives, the Brood are conducting experiments on Carol, altering her physiology. Afterwards, Wolverine notes that she no longer smells human.


Wolverine once again mentions his past with Carol, and this specific reference will come up again down the road.


Wolverine describes Carol as being a "lovely lady - skin and soul", a turn of phrase I don't believe Claremont uses too often.

Corsair is shown summoning his pistols using "phasing jewels" on his gloves, which I think is the first time it's made clear where his guns go when he's not using them.


In the wake of Lilandra and the X-Men's disappearance, Moira is worried that Xavier has reached his breaking point.


Confronting the Brood Queen, Wolverine wants to kill her, but Cyclops insist the X-Men don't kill.


Later, Kitty is reluctant to kill the Brood attacking her, even feeling bad when it ends up accidentally killing itself in the course of attacking her.


Both Carol and Kitty refer to the Brood as Sleazoids this issue, despite neither having an opportunity to hear Wolverine use his term for the Brood prior to their use of it.

Storm notes that she feels out of harmony with herself and the world.


Nightcrawler has difficulty teleporting himself and Kitty to Lilandra's ship, despite having an easier time teleporting with a passenger of late. Though he doesn't know it, this is because he's also carrying the Brood egg inside him.


Kitty, meanwhile, notes that she can't phase anyone along with her, though she'll eventually learn how to use her power in that way.


Once aboard Lilandra's yacht, the X-Men next appear dressed in their regular uniforms; presumably they used one of the Shi'ar clothing-making devices from Kitty's sub-plot in issues #156-157 to create them.


I Love the 80s
When the naked Carol is freed from the Brood's machine, a dignity-maintaining robe conveniently appears from out of nowhere.


Meanwhile, the sexualization of Kitty continues, as she spends the issue (including the cover) menaced by aliens in a torn, skimpy dress.

This being the 80s, the various injuries and spurts of blood are all colored black. 

Claremontisms
This issue, Colossus' organic steel skin is referred to as "well nigh-invulnerable", instead of just "nigh-invulnerable". 

The Best There Is At What He Does 
Wolverine mentions that his heightened senses are an extension of his healing ability, something I don't believe was ever explicitly stated before (or after).


For Sale
I'm amused by the fact that for some reason, a Yankees poncho isn't available through this offer.


There's another ad for the Teen Titans crossover, this one with a bit more detail.


Teebore's Take
Beginning with this issue, one of the things Claremont does with this half of the Brood story to differentiate it from the first half is to examine the morality of the X-Men. Whereas the first arc of the Brood saga was little more than well executed space opera, Claremont uses the more intense, dire circumstances in which the X-Men find themselves in this arc to question whether the X-Men have found themselves in a position where killing their foes is a necessity, as well as (eventually) to depict how they handle themselves when faced with their own imminent deaths. Here, the question of killing one's enemies is first raised when Cyclops objects to Wolverine's murderous rage towards the Brood Queen. Knowing what he does about what the Brood have done to his teammates, Wolverine wants to make the Queen pay (the unspoken question: would Cyclops react differently if he knew what Wolverine does?). Meanwhile, Kitty is reluctant to kill the Brood trying to kill her, even while the delay is threatening Nightcrawler's life. In the end, she affirms that she doesn't want to become like Wolverine, but again, she remains ignorant of the Brood egg growing inside her. As the story progresses, Claremont will continue to feature the X-Men, individually and as a group, grapple with the morality of their situation, both internally and externally, giving this half of the story a depth of theme and characterization that sets it apart from the first half. 

Next Issue
The first appearance of Binary as the X-Men try to escape the Brood.

But first, come back tomorrow for the start of New Mutants X-aminations, as we look at the team's first appearance in Marvel Graphic Novel #4

26 comments:

  1. I remember being surprised at how grim this story was the first time I read it. This really is the first time all the members of the team start to struggle with the idea of just killing their opponents. As you mentioned, it's the major theme for this story and I think the team is definitely changed afterwards. It's not as dark as Mutant Massacre, but it definitely sets the series on the road to it.

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  2. @Jeff: It's not as dark as Mutant Massacre, but it definitely sets the series on the road to it.

    Great point. I never made that connection before, but this story is definitely a precursor to "Mutant Massacre". The later definitely couldn't exist without this story.

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  3. Is it just me, or does it really seem like Havok is going with the Starjammers here? In fact, there's this whole big deal about the Starjammers going off on a rescue mission, which really amounts to nothing. They show up in the end, but there's no side-story following their search. I can't help but feel that if Cockrum had remained, we would've had a Starjammers (and Havok) sub-plot in the next few issues.

    "Back on Earth, in preparation for the upcoming New Mutants spinoff, the X-Mansion is being rebuilt..."

    And they've made a lot of progress on it in such a short time, too. This was obviously some sort of editorial mandate, because it was pretty clear in previous issues that the x-Men were moving permanently to the island. I guess in-story, with the X-Men gone, Xavier figures he might as well move back to his house now that he doesn't need a superhero headquarters anymore? I can't recall if there's some narration to that effect.

    As for who's paying for it, I would assume maybe Angel again? Though it seems kind of dickish for Xavier to keep asking his former student (who isn't even an X-Man anymore) for loans.

    And that reminds me -- stories over the years have been very unclear on just how wealthy Xavier is. Sometimes he seems to be quite rich, while other times it's like he's "only" a millionaire.

    "Both Carol and Kitty refer to the Brood as Sleazoids this issue, despite neither having an opportunity to hear Wolverine use his term for the Brood prior to their use of it."

    It begins...

    (Maybe he used it off-panel after the first half of the Brood story, but still.)

    "Storm notes that she feels out of harmony with herself and the world."

    It begins...

    "Wolverine mentions that his heightened senses are an extension of his healing ability, something I don't believe was ever explicitly stated before (or after)."

    Possibly because it makes no sense...? I mean, I appreciate Claremont remembering that mutants are only supposed to have one extra ability, but this is kind of a stretch.

    "I'm amused by the fact that for some reason, a Yankees poncho isn't available through this offer."

    As a Giants fan, I'm just distraught that they're using the Dodgers to sell their product. I hadn't discovered baseball yet at this time; were the Dodgers a really big deal in the early 80's?

    Jeff -- "This really is the first time all the members of the team start to struggle with the idea of just killing their opponents."

    I tend to be in the camp that superheroes shouldn't kill, but I appreciate that Claremont visited the concept repeatedly in his run on this title.

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  4. @Matt: I can't help but feel that if Cockrum had remained, we would've had a Starjammers (and Havok) sub-plot in the next few issues.

    Yeah, I could see Cockrum working the Starjammers into a subplot in issue #165. But in this issue, Corsair specifically says he's leaving Havok behind, as he doesn't want to expose his son to what he might do if forced to avenge Cyclops, so it seems unlikely that Havok would be tagging along (unless you're thinking Claremont is setting up Alex to stowaway).

    I can't recall if there's some narration to that effect.

    There really isn't any, and as far as I know, Xavier never gives an explicit in-story reason for rebuilding it (though next issue makes mention of how the mansion is being rebuilt so fast/cheaply, something, having read these issues only once before years ago, I'd completely forgotten).

    (Maybe he used it off-panel after the first half of the Brood story, but still.)

    That would be my No Prize explanation for it, but still...

    It begins...

    Haha! I was amazed at how many things Claremont was setting up specifically in this issue.

    I mean, I appreciate Claremont remembering that mutants are only supposed to have one extra ability, but this is kind of a stretch.

    Indeed. And as we'll see tomorrow, Claremont stretches it even further with Wolfsbane.

    were the Dodgers a really big deal in the early 80's?

    They won the '81 World Series, and since this issue was on the stands in August of '82, that would make them the reigning champs, which I'm sure is why they're featured in the ad.

    I tend to be in the camp that superheroes shouldn't kill, but I appreciate that Claremont visited the concept repeatedly in his run on this title.

    Ditto, on both counts.

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  5. Regarding Kitty, she's not only in peril, but she's being menaced by something that's intends to puncture her. Twice, apparently. How old is she supposed to be? Does she age rapidly or anything?

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  6. @Joan: How old is she supposed to be? Does she age rapidly or anything?

    13-ish, at this point, and nope. Which is what makes the whole thin especially skeevy.

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  7. Teebore -- "...Corsair specifically says he's leaving Havok behind..."

    Hmm, I totally forgot about that. I may have to start actually reading the issues when I comment on them.

    Teebore -- "...next issue makes mention of how the mansion is being rebuilt so fast/cheaply..."

    Really! I forgot that, too. I'll look forward to finding out the answer, because I've always remembered it being glossed over.

    Teebore -- "They won the '81 World Series, and since this issue was on the stands in August of '82, that would make them the reigning champs, which I'm sure is why they're featured in the ad."

    Yes, that would explain that, I suppose.

    Stupid Dodgers.

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  8. Isn't there a sub-plot that Kitty turns 14 during all of this? Maybe it's next issue.

    It's been awhile since I read this issue (I'm currently in the midst of the JRJR run), but looking back it's pretty solid. The "no kill" rule seems stretched to the limit here, when dealing with insectoid alien monsters; it's a good way to bring up the issue of where exactly the line is drawn.

    You think we'd be past the point of people hyper-ventilating about our heroes being in real peril, but letters pages here and in Byrne's Fantastic Four run seem to indicate otherwise; it's just bizarre how naive readers were during this era. I wonder how many people really thought several of the X-Men might die after part 2 of this story. I like the dramatic tension of Wolverine knowing what's in store and steeling himself to kill his friends. Hard to believe how far he's come from the Giant Size days when the rest of the gang could barely stomach him.

    I haven't read much of anything on the New Mutants, but it seems like the X-Men start to take a hit in quality soon after it starts running parallel to UXM. Maybe it's just that not reading New Mutants, but I don't care to read an issue of UXM where it's 95% Rachel Summers and Magma fighting Selene, but it seems like adding the second team, along with Secret Wars and its editorial mandates, kind of ended the X-Men's "golden age."

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  9. The Brood Queen is seen for the first time, though she's essentially just a larger-than-normal Brood.

    And this is some four years before "Aliens" hits theaters, featuring an Alien Queen that is essentially just a larger-than-normal Alien.

    Back on Earth, in preparation for the upcoming New Mutants spinoff, the X-Mansion is being rebuilt, the Bermuda Island base effectively abandoned following the X-Men's kinapping in issue #161. It's not mentioned who is paying for the mansion's repairs; a lack of funds was one of the reasons cited for moving to the island base in the first place.

    I just read this issue recently, so I should know this -- but is any explanation for the move?

    On stands at the same time as this issue, Rogue follows up her appearance in Uncanny X-Men #158 by taking on Dazzler and Angel in Dazzler #22. Not worth it's own post, but given her future role in the book, worth mentioning the appearance, and the fact that she's still in full-on villain mode.

    Oh. I never knew that. That's actually a very helpful in-universe point to note since we're just eight issues from her reintroduction and reformation.



    Is there ever a flashback story depicting this adventure?

    But first, come back tomorrow for the start of New Mutants X-aminations, as we look at the team's first appearance in Marvel Graphic Novel #4

    I'm really excited for the New Mutants X-Aminations to begin -- New Mutants Musings? -- but aren't we jumping the gun? Shouldn't we be waiting until after UXM 165? The Xavier / Moira confrontation in that issue leads directly into the formation of the New Mutants.

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  10. Hm. Apparently I screwed something up there.

    Is there ever a flashback depicting the Wolverine / Carol story?

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  11. Michael -- "Isn't there a sub-plot that Kitty turns 14 during all of this? Maybe it's next issue."

    There is, but I think it's in a Paul Smith issue. So probably issue after next. I could be mistaken, though.

    Michael -- "it seems like the X-Men start to take a hit in quality soon after it starts running parallel to UXM."

    I tend to agree. After the Paul Smith issues finish, I actually think New Mutants is better, for the most part, when it runs alongside Uncanny. It seems like Claremont had more interest in that cast of characters, or something.

    Michael -- "...I don't care to read an issue of UXM where it's 95% Rachel Summers and Magma fighting Selene"...

    Strangely, even though I can't stand Rachel, I kind of like that issue. Maybe because I like Magma. It'll be interesting to go through the JR Jr. years here, because I've only read them in total maybe two times. I know there are bits and pieces that I like, but there's a lot I don't care for, too.

    Michael -- "Is there ever a flashback depicting the Wolverine / Carol story?"

    I think it's detailed somewhat in the original Genosha storyline during the "Outback years". I'm not sure if it's ever had a full fleshing out, though.

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  12. Hahahaha! Best conversation ending. Ever.

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  13. @Matt:I'll look forward to finding out the answer, because I've always remembered it being glossed over.

    I wouldn't say it still isn't glossed over, but at least lip service is paid to it.

    @Dobson: Isn't there a sub-plot that Kitty turns 14 during all of this?

    In the Special Edition X-Men, er, special, the X-Men throw Kitty a belated birthday party, mentioning that her actual fourteenth birthday occurred while they were in space during this story.

    The "no kill" rule seems stretched to the limit here, when dealing with insectoid alien monsters; it's a good way to bring up the issue of where exactly the line is drawn.

    Agreed. There's definitely a feeling of "they're inhuman monsters, the rule shouldn't apply", which of course makes the debate more intriguing.

    I wonder how many people really thought several of the X-Men might die after part 2 of this story

    I wonder that too. I'm amazed as well at some of the letters. I guess maybe I'm just being naive (or cynical?) in thinking that by 1982 readers would already be wise to these tricks.

    it seems like adding the second team, along with Secret Wars and its editorial mandates, kind of ended the X-Men's "golden age."

    Well, we're heading into what I consider my personal golden age for the X-Men, so I obviously disagree there, though I'll freely admit my affection comes, in part, from these being the issues I read the most when I was in that definitive 12-15 age range. I also think reading X-Men alongside New Mutants during that era helps, as it makes the parts feel like part of a bigger whole.

    That said, I am not a big fan of the "Rachel and Magma fight Selene" issue, either.

    @Michael: And this is some four years before "Aliens" hits theaters, featuring an Alien Queen that is essentially just a larger-than-normal Alien.

    Good point. Assuming we credit Scott's Alien as being an influence on Claremont in creating the Brood, it's interesting how similar Claremont's extrapolations of the original concept mirror James Cameron's (not that I think the later ripped off the former; just that the two similar ideas born of the same inspiration followed similar tracks).

    but is any explanation for the move?

    Nope. At least not anything in-story.

    Oh. I never knew that. That's actually a very helpful in-universe point to note

    Ah, mission accomplished then! I'm glad I mentioned it.

    Is there ever a flashback depicting the Wolverine / Carol story?

    As Matt mentions, it features in Claremont's first Genosha story in issues #235-238. It gets fleshed out some, but as far as I know, it's never fully depicted in flashback (that said, I wouldn't be surprised if there's some more recent Wolverine limited series or something out there that's covered it, but if so, I'm unaware of it).

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  14. Dobson -- "My name isn't Michael!!"

    Oops... sorry about that! I was responding to both of you at once got mixed up.

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  15. @Michael: Shouldn't we be waiting until after UXM 165? The Xavier / Moira confrontation in that issue leads directly into the formation of the New Mutants.

    I meant to respond to this in the comment earlier, then just missed it.

    Anyways, yes, technically we are jumping the gun. The problem is that MGN #4 and New Mutants #1-3 all take place between X-Men #165 and #167. Since I'm determined to not skip a week covering X-Men and also cover each issue of New Mutants individually, that means we either need to start covering New Mutants ahead of #165, or cover NM #3 after X-Men #167.

    For a variety of reasons, including the fact that after #167 we've got to cover a bunch of X-Men one offs (like Annual #6) during which we'll take a break from New Mutants, the fact that covering NM #3 before #167 lines up their respective on sale dates relatively closely (NM #3 was on stands the same time as X-Men #168, and because I like the way NM #3 leads into X-Men #167, I decided to fudge things at the beginning of New Mutants instead of the end.

    Rest assured, I spent a good chunk of time trying to make it all fit like it's supposed to, but I just couldn't find a way to do it while still covering an issue of each series a week.

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  16. So if Kitty is like 14 years old, why hasn't anyone approached colossus about the whole pedophile thing? I mean, it just gets worse in the next few issues.

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  17. Joe Rosen letters this issue rather than Orz, which is clear from the title at the top of the first page. (And if that doesn't clue you in, the credits box at the bottom of the first page will...)

    I have no complaints about Rosen's lettering other than that he isn't Orz. And in fact it's striking how much his basic, classic style brings out the Silver Age simplicity of the Dave Cockrum / Bob Wiacek art. The splash page look like it could've come out of a Marvel issue from 15 years earlier — save perhaps for the suggestion, later confirmed, that Carol Danvers is starkers.

    Wolverine: "My claws are pure adamantium --" (Pg. 4)

    Does he think so at this point? Was them supposedly being attachments rather than natural bone claws "laced with the same stuff" like his skeleton one of his memory implants? Or is this just one of those bits that we have to mildly whitewash due to later retcon revelations, and he should know that they're not "pure adamantium"?

    Something tells me that the poor transition on Pgs. 12-13 is either due to missed communication between Cockrum and Claremont or a sequence that had to be dropped.

    Cyclops: "The X-Men don't kill, Logan." (Pg. 14)

    Even traditional superheroes have killed at war. And I'm thinking less of Captain America and The Human Torch during the 1940s than X-Men's sort-of opposite number / soon-to-be crossover partner over at DC, The New Teen Titans, who right when this issue was published had a spacebound epic of their own culminate in their first Annual, with Robin musing — I believe in the next regular issue following Annual #1 — that their battle alongside Starfire's people and The Omega Men against Starfire's rogue sister and the Gordanians was a war and that use of lethal force was regrettably inevitable.

    I'm pretty absolutist about the idea that heroes should not kill but more absolutist with some characters than others — particularly so when it comes to superheroes whose powers dwarf those of normal humans on one hand and more accepting on the other when it comes to protagonists fighting to save not just their own lives but others' in the face of nearly impossible odds. The scale of morality certainly is more lenient in terms of situational self-preservation rather than revenge, which as you bring up, Teebore, is something that stokes Wolverine's baser instincts here albeit with somewhat noble trappings.

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  18. The Brood Queen is seen for the first time, though she's essentially just a larger-than-normal Brood.

    You were expecting Alice Krige?

    in preparation for the upcoming New Mutants spinoff, the X-Mansion is being rebuilt

    And it happens faster than the X-Men's repair of that measly little Danger Room.

    What I wanna know is how conflicted Xavier feels about mind-wiping all the folks who installed the computers and secret access tunnels and Danger Room weaponry.

    It's not mentioned who is paying for the mansion's repairs; a lack of funds was one of the reasons cited for moving to the island base in the first place.

    Let's see... Marvel-time compression... uh... carry the seven... Hey! I know why Mitt Romney won't release his back taxes and suddenly want to vote for the guy. (Maybe the cyborgs and mutants can co-exist peacefully after all.)

    Storm notes that she feels out of harmony with herself and the world.

    Maybe 'cause she's not on Earth? I was surprised that this wasn't brought up in the story, although that admittedly would cut into this general feeling of dissociation that Claremont is having Ororo work through.

    presumably they used one of the Shi'ar clothing-making devices from Kitty's sub-plot in issues #156-157 to create them

    That's how I rationalized it.

    Wolverine mentions that his heightened senses are an extension of his healing ability, something I don't believe was ever explicitly stated before (or after).

    Probably because it doesn't make any sense? (I see that Matt wrote virtually the same thing.)

    Although I kind-of want to buy into that just so that he doesn't have oddly separate sets of powers.

    I'm amused by the fact that for some reason, a Yankees poncho isn't available through this offer.

    George Steinbrenner threw his lot in with Mister Peanut during the Great "Snacks Named in 'Take Me Out to the Ball Game'" Merchandising Wars of 1982.

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  19. @Joan: Best conversation ending. Ever.

    Whatever happened to "Gaugin was a dick"? You're so fickle.

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  20. I'm sorry that this has absolutely nothing to do with X-Men, Teebore, but I keep forgetting that I keep meaning to remember to share it with you so I shall now do so.

    Oh, I could E-mail it, but the more eyes on it the merrier — kinda like Joan, but the opposite.

    At some point in the comments section of a post of Joan's that got waaaaay out of hand, I used the expression "for Pete Ross's sake" followed by the parenthetical aside "You are totally not expected to know who Pete Ross is."

    Joan's reply? "I do too know who Pete Ross is! The lack of respect I get around here. He was very good at baseball at some point in time on some team."

    Of course, I could only respond with a fit of laughter and, when I recovered, the thought that you of few people, knowing comics and baseball and Joan, would appreciate it.

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  21. @Hero of Time: So if Kitty is like 14 years old, why hasn't anyone approached colossus about the whole pedophile thing?

    Technically, at this point Colossus hasn't done anything wrong. Kitty is crushing on him, but he's been perfectly gentlemanly about the whole thing, including the next few issues.

    After that, things get a bit dicey, though...

    @Blam: Does he think so at this point?

    Yes. At this point, he genuinely believes them to be attachments made of pure adamantium, and not adamantium-laced bones. I don't believe it's a result of a memory implant though; the general idea, suggested prior to and affirmed in Origin is that Wolverine's healing factor also heals his mind by slowly wiping away emotionally painful memories. Thus, there's a point even before Weapon X gets involved that he's more or less forgotten about his bone claws (which, of course, means even more emotional pain when he learns about them, but apparently his healing factor is only concerned about short term mental pain).

    The scale of morality certainly is more lenient in terms of situational self-preservation rather than revenge

    I agree. Heck, I'm an ardent "superheroes don't kill" guy, but I'd really have no issue if the X-Men started blowing away the Brood who are trying to recapture them (not that I mind Claremont taking the opportunity to examine the morality of such actions).

    You were expecting Alice Krige?

    Heh. :)

    What I wanna know is how conflicted Xavier feels about mind-wiping all the folks who installed the computers and secret access tunnels and Danger Room weaponry.

    That, as well as the speed of the construction, is actually quasi-addressed next issue.

    I was surprised that this wasn't brought up in the story, although that admittedly would cut into this general feeling of dissociation that Claremont is having Ororo work through.

    Yeah, I get what Claremont is going for here, but it does seems odd that she never once thinks that her dissociation might be tied to her being WAY off Earth.

    George Steinbrenner threw his lot in with Mister Peanut during the Great "Snacks Named in 'Take Me Out to the Ball Game'" Merchandising Wars of 1982.

    I'm not the world's biggest Steinbrenner fan, but I gotta agree with him on this one. Always back the nut with the top hat and monocle.

    Of course, I could only respond with a fit of laughter and, when I recovered, the thought that you of few people, knowing comics and baseball and Joan, would appreciate it.

    I do indeed! Classic Joan. Heck, I'm just glad she knows of "Pete Ross" as a guy who was once good at baseball, instead of as a disgraced gambler...

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  22. Teebore: at this point Colossus hasn't done anything wrong

    He let Illyana come stay with the X-Men! Oh, you mean in terms of Kitty...

    Teebore: the general idea, suggested prior to and affirmed in Origin is that Wolverine's healing factor also heals his mind by slowly wiping away emotionally painful memories

    I did not know that. Origin came out just as I had to divest myself of the periodical-comics habit, and as I've mentioned ad nauseum I never got back into Marvel. Now and then I come close to getting the TPB.

    Teebore: That, as well as the speed of the construction, is actually quasi-addressed next issue.

    Now and then I think about (re)reading ahead for this reason, but it's fun to experience the issues anew every week.

    Teebore: Always back the nut with the top hat and monocle.

    I didn't think you were a Romney guy.

    Teebore: Classic Joan.

    Am I allowed to use the John Bolton gag again?

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  23. "Wolverine mentions that his heightened senses are an extension of his healing ability, something I don't believe was ever explicitly stated before (or after).

    Probably because it doesn't make any sense? (I see that Matt wrote virtually the same thing.)"

    I dunno, it kind of makes a certain sense to me. The idea being that Wolverine is just an enhanced human: enhanced smell, hearing, sight and healing abilities.

    Of course with his hyper healing abilities these days for his other abilities to keep pace he'd have better eyesight than Superman and be stronger than the Hulk...

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  24. Blam: Now and then I come close to getting the TPB.

    It's worth a read if you can find it cheap/free. Nothing terribly earthshattering, and it's definitely top heavy, in that it starts out strong then peters out, but it's well put together throughout with solid art.

    I didn't think you were a Romney guy.

    *rimshot*

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  25. @Dr. Bitz: The idea being that Wolverine is just an enhanced human: enhanced smell, hearing, sight and healing abilities.

    Yeah, it's not too hard to draw a line from enhanced healing to enhanced senses. His body just does everything it does really well, whether that's seeing or smelling or hearing (you could also argue that the healing factor would keep his senses from degrading, ie he'll always have perfect eyesight, but that would only get him to the best possible human senses, and not "enhanced" ones).

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