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Thursday, June 22, 2017

X-amining X-Force #21

"War Machines"
April 1993

In a Nutshell
Sam tries to save Graymalkin as X-Force battles Iron Man.

Those killers: Fabian Nicieza & Greg Capullo
Inks with a knife: Harry Candelario
Letters with a bullet: Chris Eliopolous
Colors with blood: Javins/Buccellato
Edits with adrenaline fear: Bob Harras
Behind you every step of the way: Tom DeFalco

Plot
X-Force engages Iron Man, and the resulting damage, combined with the recent EMP burst caused by the collision with the Stark satellite, causes Graymalkin to begin breaking apart. On Earth, Warpath, Boomer & Siryn return from shopping and are ambushed by the Externals, while Domino and Grizzly visit Hammer. On Graymalkin, Professor teleports Sam & Roberto to his command center just as Lila arrives to teleport the team to safety. Sam and Roberto figure out that Cable gave Sam override access to Graymalkin, and Professor needs his help to determine which components of the station to jettison in order to keep the station together. On Earth, Vanessa and her roommate visit a bar, while Deadpool picks up Vanessa's trail. On Graymalkin, Rictor tells Lila they can't leave behind Iron Man and the SHIELD team, while Sam & Roberto begin jettisoning components of the station to Earth. But just as they manage to get the station stabilized, Professor suddenly detects an electromagnetic anomaly, and Graymalkin explodes.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

X-amining X-Men (vol. 2) #19

"A Skinning of Souls Part Three: Harvest of the Innocent"
April 1993

In a Nutshell
The Soul Skinner is defeated.

Writer: Fabian Nicieza
Pencils: Andy Kubert
Inkers: Pennington (pgs 1-9), Wiacek (pgs10-11), Panosian (pgs 12-16), Williamson (pgs 17-22)
Letterer: Bill Oakley
Colorist: Joe Rosas
Editor: Bob Harras
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
The Soul Skinner sets Omega Red after the still-free Colossus & Colonel Vazhin, who are tending to the children of the Neftelensk, left free of the Soul Skinner's control due to the painful memory of his own lost daughter. The pair spot the arrival of Russian agents, with Illyana in tow, and Colossus attacks them, which allows the Soul Skinner to get into Colossus' mind and show him his parents' deaths. Back at the mansion, Beast discusses his recent doldrums with Jean. In Russia, an enraged Colossus attacks Vazhin, who insists he didn't intend for Colossus' parents to die. The combined grief and anger of Colossus weakens the Soul Skinner, loosening his hold on the X-Men, who attack him as he attempts to kill Illyana. Working together, Colossus and Psylocke link the minds of the children in the village, collecting their shared innocence and injecting it into the Soul Skinner via Psylocke's psychic knife. Overwhelmed, the Soul Skinner shuts down his own mind, after which Vazhin shoots him in the head, killing him. Colossus then frees Illyana, and Wolverine confirms Omega Red escaped, leaving Jubilee to wonder how the X-Men can deal with all this pain and still look at themselves in the mirror.

Friday, June 16, 2017

X-amining Wolverine #68

"Epsilon Red"
April 1993

In a Nutshell
Wolverine battles Epsilon Red.

Script: Larry Hama
Art: Mark Texeira
Backgrounds: Steve Biasi
Lettering: Pat Brosseau
Coloring: Steve Buccellato
Editor: Bob Harras
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
Wolverine confronts Epsilon Red, and still thinking it's the 1960s, recalls their last encounter, in which he was sent to kill the Soviet astronaut. The memory causes him to come to his senses and realize the correct year, and Epsilon Red says that he's using his psi-talents to help Wolverine remember. With his help, Wolverine recalls the original "Terry Adams" mission, in which he was meant to kill Epsilon Red to stop him from getting to the moon before the Americans, but was called off when the US landed a man on the moon. He thanks Epsilon Red for clearing up his memories, then helps him board a space shuttle and return "home" before being picked up by the X-Men. As they leave, one of the Russian guards ask Epsilon Red's daughter Elena why she used her telepathic powers to show Wolverine what she did; she tells him she left out part of the mission, when Sabretooth arrived and killed her mother, and that while inside Wolverine's head, she was able get some clues to Sabretooth's whereabouts, so she can track him down and kill him.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

X-amining X-Factor #89

"Dark Homecoming" / "Cabin Fever"
April 1993

In a Nutshell
X-Factor arrives in Genosha.

Writer: Peter David
Penciler: Joe Quesada, Chris Batista (2nd story)
Inker: Al Milgrom
Letterer: Richard Starkings, Lois Buhalis (2nd Story)
Colorist: Glynis Oliver
Editor: Kelly Corvese
Group Editor: Bob Harras
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
X-Factor and the X-Patriots arrive in Genosha, and are introduced to the Genoshan president and reunited with Moira. Elsewhere, mutant Dick Chalker, blaming himself for his brother and cousin's deaths, rushes out to wipe out every last mutant on the people, and is promptly run over by a truck. That night, Rahne experiences another nightmare, and Moira agrees to start running tests on her immediately. As Strong Guy goes with Jo Beth to meet her grandmother, Havok & Prodigal meet with the Genoshan president, while Moira & Sasha Ryan determine that Rahne's connection to Havok is a result of the process that turned her into a mutate. Later, Sasha Ryan meets with a shadowy figure, telling him they can't continue their plans until X-Factor leaves. He agrees, but vows that one day their country will once again be free of mutants.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

X-amining Uncanny X-Men #299

"Nightlines"
April 1993

In a Nutshell
Xavier debates Senator Kelly & Graydon Creed on live TV.

Writer: Scott Lobdell
Pencils: Brandon Peterson
Inks: Dan Panosian
Letterer: Chris Eliopoulos
Colorist: Marie Javins
Editor: Bob Harras
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
In Kuwait, Forge and Gyrich inspect wreckage which Forge determines to be the remains of Asteroid M, and inside, they are stunned to discover Magneto's body missing. In New York, Jean helps Professor X prepare for a televised debate on human/mutant relations with Senator Kelly, while Archangel checks on Teddy, the young boy recently targeted by the Acolytes. Xavier & Kelly are joined by Graydon Creed, leader of the anti-mutant Friends of Humanity organization. Watching the broadcast with his fellow Upstarts, Cortez is incensed that Creed is a member of the Upstarts. Shortly, Beast joins the televised debate, and quickly gets under Creed's skin, much to the delight of the X-Men watching from Harry's Hideaway. As the debate concludes, Xavier finds he and Kelly have more in common than they thought, a sentiment similarly expressed by Kelly's telepathic aide. Outside the TV studio, Cyclops tells Xavier that the Blackbird is ready to go; the Acolytes have been traced to France, and the X-Men are taking the fight to them.

Friday, June 9, 2017

X-amining Excalibur #63

"Denial"
March 1993

In a Nutshell
Kylun & Captain Britain are targeted as Excalibur reluctantly aids the RCX.

Writer/Penciler: Alan Davis
Inker: Mark Farmer
Letterer: Chris Elipoulos
Colorist: Glynis Oliver
Editor: Terry Kavanaugh
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
Awakening from a dream about his time on Ee'rath, Kylun marshals the courage to reunite with his parents, only to be attacked and captured by the Seraphim as he reaches their door. Meanwhile, at Cloud Nine, in lieu of imprisoning the captive members of Excalibur, Nigel assigns each of them a Warpie guide who neutralizes their power. He shows them around the facility, revealing that he needs their help battling a disease that is targeting parahumans. Nightcrawler offers Excalibur's help however they can. Elsewhere, Phoenix, grappling with the guilt of killing unborn life, encounters Death, who suggests the solution is to let go of being human. At Cloud Nine, the RCX tests' Nightcrawler's powers, and realize he is showing signs of having contracted the disease. At the coast, Captain Britain's powers mysteriously return, just as another group of Seraphim confront him and Meggan. They tell him to surrender, or else. Captain Britain chooses "or else".

Thursday, June 8, 2017

X-amining X-Force #20

"Assault on Graymalkin"
March 1993

In a Nutshell

Writer: Fabian Nicieza
Penciler: Greg Capullo
Inker: Harry Candelario
Letterer: Chris Eliopolous
Colorist: Steve Buccellato
Editor: Bob Harras
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
When a Stark satellite accidentally uncloaks Graymalkin, Cable's space station, in orbit around Earth, SHIELD is called in to investigate, but Nick Fury is forced to cut a deal with Jim Rhodes, who claims salvage rights to the station, in order to go aboard. In Arizona, X-Force catches a news report about the station, and Sam orders Lila to teleport the team onboard. Meanwhile, Vanessa emerges from her room, having taken the form of her roommate, Domino enlists the help of Grizzly in locating X-Force, and the X-Ternal Nicodemus succumbs to a mysterious illness. In space, Nick Fury leads a SHIELD team onto Graymalkin. Intending to protect Cable's legacy, X-Force attacks and defeats them, only to find themselves face-to-face with Iron Man.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

X-amining X-Men (vol. 2) #18

"The Crops Mature: A Skinning of Souls Part Two"
March 1993

In a Nutshell
The X-Men battle Omega Red & Soul Skinner.

Writer: Fabian Nicieza
Penciler: Andy Kubert
Inkers: Pennington (pgs 5-22), Panosian (pgs 1-4)
Letterer: Chris Elipoulos
Colorist: Joe Rosas
Editor: Bob Harras
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
The fight between Omega Red & Soul Skinner ends with Omega Red in Soul Skinner's thrall. Later, the X-Men, along with Colonel Vazhin, arrive on the outskirts of Neftelensk. Entering the town, they find everyone, including Darkstar and Father Garnoff, unresponsive, before they are attacked by Omega Red. Meanwhile, Russian officials decide to activate Red Flag #133 to stop Soul Skinner, while in Japan, Kwannon is tasked by Lord Nyoirin with slaying her other self, Psylocke, before she can re-enter his service. In Russia, the combination of Omega Red and the Soul Skinner defeat the X-Men, but Colossus & Vazhin manage to escape, and discover that Soul Skinner's power does not affect children, which prompts Vazhin to apologize to Colossus, for it makes it even more certain that Red Flag #133 will be activated. Back at Colossus' home, Russian agents arrive, killing his parents and capturing Illyana, as Vazhin explains that in order to stop the Soul Skinner, his government will attempt to accelerate Illyana's age to access her latent mutant power, a process that could very well kill her.

Friday, June 2, 2017

X-amining Wolverine #67

"Valley O' Death!"
March 1993

In a Nutshell
Wolverine learns the truth about Terry Adams.

Writer: Larry Hama
Penciler: Mark Texeira
Inks: Texeira & Pamiotti
Letters: Pat Brosseau
Colors: Steve Buccellato
Editor: Bob Harras
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
Left for dead in a Russian desert, Wolverine wakes up, still hallucinating the presence of Janice and believing the year to be 1967, and he sets off in search of Terry Adams. Meanwhile, the X-Men track down Maverick, in the hopes of learning Wolverine's whereabouts. In the Hindu Kush, the two KGB agents who shot Wolverine learn of a bounty placed on him by the Hand. They go back to try and retrieve his body, but are shocked to discover it's gone. At the X-Mansion, Maverick informs the X-Men that "Terry Adams" is the former Soviet space center at Tyuratam. As the X-Men depart for the base, Wolverine arrives there, trailed by the two KGB agents. Wolverine kills them and steals their armored car, using it to infiltrate the facility. Inside, he meets a young woman who, believing Wolverine to be KGB, takes him deeper into the base, to where her father, the Soviet super astronaut Epsilon Red, resides. Only then does she realize the truth about Wolverine: that he's actually the person who tried to kill her father years ago.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

X-amining X-Factor #88

"...Random Violence" / "Time Out"
March 1993

In a Nutshell
The first appearance of Random.

Writer: Peter David
Penciler: Joe Quesada, Chris Batista (2nd Story)
Inker: Al Milgrom, Andrew Pepoy (2nd Story)
Letterer: Richard Starkings. Lois Buhalis (2nd Story)
Colorist: Ariane
Editor: Kelly Corvese
Group Editor: Bob Harras
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
With the X-Patriots holding a hospital hostage seeking treatment for Taylor, the mayor calls in mutant bounty hunter Random. X-Factor arrives shortly after he does, and after Random attacks the X-Patrios, X-Factor attacks him. But is mutant power enables him to hold his own against the team, so Havok ends the fight by cutting Random a check to walk away. In the aftermath, X-Factor agrees to accompany the X-Patriots back to Genosha, to prove it's safe for them there. In Genosha, the new Director of Genetics meets with the President and Moira MacTaggert before entering a secret facility where she declares that soon, the Mutate problem will be solved permanently.