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Monday, August 26, 2019

X-aminations in September 2019 & February 1995 Power Rankings


"Age of Apocalypse" concludes and the prime reality returns this month, in which I'll be traveling a fair amount and prepping for our local October comic convention, hence the lighter-than-normal schedule.

On Sale April 1995
September 4: X-Universe #2

September 11: Generation Next #4
September 12: X-Man #4

September 18: X-Men Omega

On Sale May 1995
September 25: X-Men Prime

February 1995 Power Rankings
This is a pretty solid month; X-Calibre #2 is really the only below-average issue, and even then, it's not terrible (just overly-grim & poorly drawn). So whatever distinctions are being made here are largely the result of splitting hairs.

1. Factor X #2 
2. X-Man #2
3. Weapon X #2

X-Man remains surprisingly strong, moving into "shit hitting the fan" territory with only its second issue, while issue #2 represents the best issues of the other two top series, with the final full issue of Factor X drawn by Steve Epting and the zenith of its "Shakespearean plotting" phase, while Weapon X is elevated by the separation of Logan & Jean Grey.

4. Astonishing X-Men #2
5. Generation Next #2

Two issues of a piece, strong on art but light on story. Prefer Bachalo to Madureira? Just swap these two spots.

6. Amazing X-Men #2
7. Gambit and the X-Ternals #2

Plot-heavy issues that advance their series' overarching narratives. This is probably also the best issue of Gambit and the X-Ternals, but is let down by the art, per usual.

8. X-Calibre #2

The only real clunker of the bunch.

6 comments:

  1. Factor X #2 is my favorite from this month too. And it was the first AoA related issue I've read.

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  2. Your Generation Next review being on that date seems strangely apt, considering the ending.

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  3. I figure this is a good post on which to leave some general AOA questions.

    Did I miss an explanation in the early issues for why Magneto’s belief of Bishop’s story manifested, or at least hit a tipping point, 20 years on? I can No-Prize away the narrative convenience as some kind of cosmic equivalence due to arriving at the point in time when Legion went back to alter history, sure, but…

    Are there vastly more mutants in the AOA reality, period? Or is it just that most of them are in the States, they’re a much higher percentage of the population due to Apocalypse’s cullings, and more are out in the open than in the prime reality? Did the breeding pens wildly increase their number? Natural mutant births literally being one in a million equals 5,000 to 7,000 depending on when “now” is — much fewer than it feels like there must be in this reality.

    That’s in addition to the largely rhetorical questions in previous comments about why key events in the Marvel Universe we know that predate Xavier’s death or should be independent of its repercussions on Earth didn’t happen or, if they did, how they were averted or subsumed into the new timeline.

    Could be I should’ve waited until I read the last few issues, although having such questions for nearly the entire run of AOA suggests to me that even if they’re finally addressed it was a bit too late.

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    Replies
    1. We would need to unslide the sliding timescale to determine when exactly Xavier was in Israel with Magneto and died there in relation to UXM #1 and 1963. Sometime in the early to mid 50's? We will ignore the slided Six Day War navigation point given in Legion Quest.

      Obviously it predates anything that Marvel Comics put out starting with FF #1, and Aoocalypse's ascension apparently soon after it put a spanner to everything.

      Captain America and co had been active in WWII, but he's still an icy totem in Greenland.

      Von Doom's accident seemingly has happened, and that apparently was before Reed and Ben were in the Korean War, but somehow he never left for the Himalayas, so that's at least an earlier point of diverence.

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    2. So effectively Apocalypse jumped the gun as *the* mutant supremachist to Magneto by a decade or so, and there was no crew of Xavier's to combat him from the get-go or any of the other heroes.

      Or maybe not a decade, if Don Blake already was in Norway at the time. It may have been a very close shave.

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    3. Anyway, all of this means that the initial combatting Apocalypse was left for the officials, and there is an AoA Fred Duncan story badly in need of telling.

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