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Wednesday, April 1, 2020

X-amining Generation X #9

"Someplace Other Than Here"
November 1995

In a Nutshell
Skin fights a dragon while the rest of Generation X works to restore the Glamour Machine.

Writer: Scott Lobdell
Penciler: Tom Grummett
Inkers: Mark Buckingham & Al Milgrom
Letterer: Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Colorist: Steve Buccellato & Electric Crayon
Editor: Bob Harras

As Skin & Penance keep the dragon outside the gates surrounding the Glamour Machine busy, Jubilee & Husk work to repair the device. Meanwhile, Synch & Chamber burst into Cassidy Keep and are reunited with Banshee & Emma. They all make their way to the Glamour Machine, where the still-catatonic M manages to get it working. It needs a power source, however, and Chamber volunteers, drawing on his vast psionic power to recharge it. Just then, Skin & Penance return, announcing the defeat of the dragon, but everyone is too busy celebrating to notice. M returns to her senses, and as the group awaits Cassidy Keep's return to their world, Emma offers a sympathetic ear, but M demurs, saying she doesn't want anyone feeling sorry for her.

Firsts and Other Notables
Tom Grummett fills in on this issue; he will stick around for the next, and a few more intermittently after that, as he sort of becomes the book's unofficial fill-in "regular" penciller before Bachalo returns. He's no Bachalo, but I like him as a fill-in guy a lot more than Roger Cruz.

A Work in Progress
Jubilee is staring to feel sorry for Monet and her periods of seemingly-random catatonia.

They're Students, Not Superheroes
When pressed to assist the faerie, Synch insists they’re students, not superheroes (in those exact words!).

Austin's Analysis
This is going to sound harsher than it is meant to be, but the best thing about this story is that it’s over. It’s cute & entertaining enough, but also largely an inconsequential arc (in terms of both narrative & characterization), and just as with the previous issue, without Bachalo around to liven it up with his unique style, the issue suffers some. The bit with Angelo & the dragon is probably the best showing for Skin in the series yet (and the punch line, that his actions are overshadowed by Chamber’s later heroics, is genuinely funny), but it’s for the best that Lobdell recognizes this is a relatively slight story and that a little whimsy goes a long way, and wraps it up in two parts instead of dragging it out any further.

Next Issue
Tomorrow, Excalibur grabs a beer (or three) in Excalibur #91. Friday, Cable fights in the future in Cable #25. Next week: Uncanny X-Men '95!

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  1. I've found myself wondering lately if Lobdell originally intended this story to run longer, but cut it short when he realized Chris Bachalo wouldn't be drawing it. Just based on last issue's setup, it felt like it might've been meant to run longer -- but who knows?

    Anyway, I agree: nothing much to see here, without Bachalo on board. I'm glad it's over too. I do really like Tom Grummett, though -- but I prefer him drawing the "real world", so I'm looking forward to what comes next.

    "When pressed to assist the faerie, Synch insists they’re students, not superheroes (in those exact words!)."

    I chuckled out loud when I got to that line last night!

  2. "He's [Tom Grummett] no Bachalo, but I like him as a fill-in guy a lot more than Roger Cruz."
    I agree. I liked when Cruz was mimicking Jim Lee before AoA, but after that he lost it completely.

    1. Cruz is a much better Jim Lee impressionist than he is a Joe Madureira one.

  3. I started collecting this series with the first issue as a teen, and this storyline is when I really started to get bored with it. Honestly, I wasn't excited about this series again until #25 and Operation Zero Tolerance (Gen X's part in the crossover was pretty badass in my opinion). After OZT ended, I'm not sure the series was ever good again.

    1. It's been awhile since I read them, but my recollection is that while the series isn't bad, it's very unmemorable for the stretch when Bachalo is gone.

  4. I still can’t see her as anything other than a villain, but I appreciated Emma calling out Sean addressing her by her general status of adult human female rather than using her name.


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