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Wednesday, December 30, 2020

X-amining What If? #87

This review comes courtesy of Patreon supporter Michael Langenmayr. After supporting the site at the "Extraordinary" level or higher for twelve months, he chose this issue for review. 
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"Cat and Mouse"
July 1996

In a Nutshell
Jubilee must survive against an escaped Sabretooth

Plot: Dan Abnett/Andy Lanning
Script: Dan Abnett
Pencils/Inks: Frank Teran
Inkers: Dan Green & Tim Townsend
Letters: Steve Dutro
Colors: Christie Scheele
Editor: Kelly Corvese
Editor-in-Chief: Bob Harras

Plot
In the tunnels beneath the X-Mansion, Jubilee discovers that Bishop has been killed by Sabretooth, who escaped his cell when Beast accidentally overloaded the mansion's power core. She runs back to the mansion, past the unconscious forms of Iceman and Emma Frost, only to find Sabretooth attacking Beast. He manages to fight Sabretooth off long enough to tell Jubilee to reboot the power core. Jubilee succeeds in doing this as Sabretooth finishes off Beast. She then blasts him with fireworks, allowing her to run elsewhere into the mansion. Drawing Sabretooth into the Danger Room, she attacks him with simulacrums of Hellfire mercenaries and Brood drones, then lures him into piercing one of the mansion's power conduits, frying him with dangerous amounts of energy, before managing to engage the room's laser grid defenses to keep him safely locked away. 

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

X-amining X-Men: The Animated Series Season 2 Episode 07 - Patreon First!

"Time Fugitives Part 1"

Original Airdate
December 11, 1993

Producer: Larry Houston
Story: Steven Melching
Storyboard Artist: Larry Houston
Story Editor Developer: Eric Lewald
Writer: Michael Edens 

Plot
In the year 3999 AD, Cable is fighting Apocalypse when a temporal storm begins erasing the timeline. Cable consults with this A.I., which tells him how Bishop, upon arriving back in his native timeline following his successful efforts to stop Senator Kelly's assassination, learned that instead a plague targeting mutants was released, leading to mutantkind still being wiped out. Bishop then proceeded to go back in time again, to stop the plague from spreading. Meanwhile, an agent of the Friends of Humanity spots Jubilee at the mall and infects a shopkeeper there with the virus, telling a gathering crowd that Jubilee - a mutant - infected him. She is rescued by Storm and Beast gives her a clean bill of health, but he investigates the virus further. Elsewhere, an attempt to quarantine some mutants in the city leads to a riot, attracting the attention of Bishop and the X-Men, reuniting them. Learning the ultimate fate of the virus from Bishop. Beast then testifies before the senate, during which Graydon Creed heckles him and ends up infecting himself with the plague. The X-Men track Creed to the base of Friends of Humanity, where the scientist who engineered the virus is revealed to be Apocalypse. Bishop manages to destroy the vials containing the virus, but an enraged Apocalypse kills the X-Men. In 3999, Cable watches all this, then learns that without the antibodies formed to combat the mutant plague, it eventually leads to more mutant deaths and the eradication of Cable's timeline. Cable is horrified as he realizes that in order to save his world, he has to help Apocalypse destroy a past one...

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Wednesday, December 23, 2020

X-amining X-Men Action Figures: Age of Apocalypse & X-Men 2099

Years of Release
1995-1996
 
Roll Call
Age of Apocalypse: Apocalypse, Magneto, Weapon X, Cyclops, Sabretooth 

X-Men 2099 Series I: Bloodhawk, Brimstone Love, Meanstreak, Metalhead, Skullfire 

X-Men 2099 Series II: Breakdown, Halloween Jack, Junkpile, La Lunatica, Shadowdancer 

Firsts and Other Notables
Embracing the "themed" approach that inspired the earlier Phoenix Saga, Mutant Genesis, and Invasion lines, "Age of Apocalypse", not surprisingly (given the storyline's popularity) receives its own line of action figures, spotlighting arguably the most popular (non-female) characters from the storyline (or at least the ones with a significant impact on the narrative), with Sabretooth's turn in the story as a gruff killer with a heart of gold essentially letting Toy Biz populate it with two Wolverines. 

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

X-amining X-Men: The Animated Series Season 2 Episode 06 - Patreon First

 "X-Ternally Yours"

Original Airdate
December 4, 1993

Producer: Larry Houston
Story: Steven Melching
Storyboard Artist: Larry Houston
Story Editor Developer: Eric Lewald
Writer: Julianne Klemm 

Plot
Cyclops is training in the Danger Room when Gambit, who is supposed to be monitoring the session, gets a phone call urging him to come home, leading Cyclops to be injured when a distracted Gambit disengages the safety settings accidentally. Rogue lays into him for his carelessness, but Gambit explains he has to go home, or else his brother may die. Gambit thinks back to when he was younger and responsible for delivering the Thieves Guild's tithe to the X-Ternal Candra, alongside their rival Assassins Guild's tithe. Returning to New Orleans, he discovers his brother has been captured by the Assassins, a trap laid by Bella Donna, whom Gambit once left at the altar. She agrees to let Gambit's brother go if Gambit honors their marriage, giving him a ring through which she can trigger pain in Gambit. As the X-Men arrive in New Orleans, Bella Donna reveals that she has exchanged the Thieves' latest tithe with a fake, so that Candra will destroy all of them. As the two guilds gather to deliver the latest tithes, Gambit breaks with Bella Donna, telling Candra the Thieves' tithe is a fake. With the X-Men's help, he and his family defeat the Assassins and expose Bella Donna's ruse to Candra, who strips Bella Donna of her powers as punishment. Gambit then leaves with the X-Men, telling Bella Donna and his family he's never coming back. 

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Saturday, December 19, 2020

Force in Focus: The Mandalorian Season 2x08

"The Rescue"

Plot
Using Slave I, the Mandalorian and his allies capture an Imperial shuttle carrying Dr. Pershing, and confirm the presence of the child aboard Moff Gideon's ship. He then enlists the aid of Bo-Katan & Koska Reeves, offering Bo-Katan Gideon's ship and to reconsider joining her fight for Mandalore in exchange for their help. The group then uses the captured shuttle & Slave I to force a landing onto Gideon's cruiser, with Cara, Fennec, Bo-Katan, and Reeves heading for the bridge while the Mandalorian attempts to shutdown the Dark Troopers and rescue the child. As his allies capture the bridge, he manages to blow the Dark Troopers into space, then finds Gideon waiting for him in the child's cell. Gideon attacks him with the Darksaber. Using his beskar staff, the Mandalorian defeats Gideon, but leaves him alive for Cara Dune. They enter the bridge, and Gideon reveals to the Mandalorian that by defeating him in battle, he has claimed the Darksaber for himself, not Bo-Katan. Just then, the Dark Troopers, under their own power, reboard the ship, and proceed towards the bridge. As the Mandalorian and his allies brace for a battle they're unlikely to win, an X-wing flies into the cruiser's landing bay, and a figure in black emerges wielding a lightsaber. As Gideon realizes who it is, he grabs a fallen blaster and tries to kill the child and then himself, but the Mandalorian blocks his shot and Cara disarms him. As the figure in black cuts through the Dark Troopers and arrives on the bridge, he reveals himself to be the Jedi Luke Skywalker, and offers to take the child for training. The Mandalorian tells the child to go with him, and assures him they will meet again. He then removes his helmet to say goodbye, and Luke takes the child, leaving behind a teary Din Djarin. 

Friday, December 18, 2020

X-amining Cable #32

"Venting"

June 1996


In a Nutshell

Cable & Domino infiltrate Camp Hayden for information about Onslaught. 


Writer: Jeph Loeb

Breakdowns: Ian Churchill

Finishes: Scott Hanna

Letterer: RS & Comicraft

Colorist: Mike Thomas

Separations: Graphic Color Works

Editor: Mark Powers

Editor-in-Chief: Bob Harras


Plot

Cable & Domino return to Camp Hayden, former site of the Nimrod project. They are hoping to find information about Onslaught, who recently wiped out the contents of the facility. As they infiltrate the facility, Domino pushes Cable to open up about the recent death of his son, Tyler, while also noticing that he is having trouble controlling his techno-organic infection. The pair are being unknowingly watched by Onslaught's herald, Post, who has a past with Cable. As Cable & Domino penetrate deeper into the facility in search of the memory chips from the security cameras which might have captured an image of Onslaught, bits of the abandoned Nimrod project come to life and attack them. While fighting it off, they locate the memory chips, but discover they've been magnetized, wiping out any info they might have contained. His frustration mixing with his grief for Tyler, Cable lashes out, destroying the last bits of Nimrod. Meanwhile, Blaquesmith is studying the changes in Cable's techno-organic infection when someone enters his base, declaring he has studied Cable too and knows he can't face the challenges ahead without Blaquesmith. Then the base explodes. 

Thursday, December 17, 2020

X-amining Excalibur #98

"Fireflies"
June 1996

In a Nutshell
Excalibur takes out a Black Air base in search of Douglock

Writer: Warren Ellis
Penciler: Carlos Pacheco
Inker: Bob Wiacek 
Letterer: Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Colorist: Ariane Lenshoek
Separations: Malibu Hues 
Editor: Suzanne Gaffney
Editor-in-Chief: Bob Harras

Plot
In the wake of Douglock's abduction by Black Air, Nightcrawler decides it's time for Excalibur to strike back. Wisdom reasons that Black Air would have either taken Douglock to their acquisition station, or directly to their London headquarters. Nightcrawler proceeds to plot out a surgical strike on the acquisition station, which the team carries out efficiently & effectively. They discover Douglock isn't there, but do confirm he is at the London HQ. Meggan then uses her elemental powers to destroy the station. Meanwhile, Brian Braddock is briefed on the Inner Circle's recent activities by the Black Queen, after which he meets with Scribe, who is scared of the club's plans and tells him of the strange behavior of the Red King following the arrival of the Red Queen, prompting Brian to wonder if the Red King is Mountjoy in disguise. Just then, strange lights appear in the skies over London, which Scribe days is a glimpse of what is about to happen. Elsewhere, two Black Air techs begin dissecting Douglock and discover files about the Legacy Virus buried in his programming.  

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

X-amining Generation X #16

"Out of Sync!"
July 1996

In a Nutshell
Generation X fights to free Synch of Emplate's control

Plot: Scott Lobdell
Script: Todd Dezago
Penciler: Tom Grummett
Inker: Al Milgrom
Letterer: Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Colorist: Team Buccellato
Enhancements: Malibu
Editor: Bob Harras

Plot
Banshee & Emma are flying to Jubilee, Paige, and Monet's aid when Emma abruptly halts Banshee's flight. She tells him if they get any close, Synch can copy their powers, making him even harder to beat; the girls are on their own. In Synch's old high school, he turns Jubilee's power on his classmates, but Paige takes the brunt of the attack as Jubilee urges him to fight Emplate's influence. Torn, he runs off. Back in Massachusetts, Skin decides to take a worsening Chamber to see Professor X. In St. Louis, Synch contemplates killing himself to save his friends, but Paige tracks him down and talks him out of it. He attacks her, causing her to shed her skin before she is ready and trapping her in a mixed form, but she manages to knock him down before collapsing from the pain. Just then, Monet confronts Synch and allows him to fully tap into her aura. When he does, he learns the truth about her, which purges him of Emplate's influence. Meanwhile, Skin & Chamber are on the road when they're attacked by the X-Cutioner, who is targeting Skin for murder. 

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

X-amining X-Men: The Animated Series Season 2 Episode 05 - Patreon First!

 "Repo Man"

Original Airdate
November 20th, 1993

Producer: Larry Houston
Story: Steven Melching
Storyboard Artist: Larry Houston
Story Editor Developer: Eric Lewald
Writer: Len Wein  

Plot
Arriving in Canada in response to a call from Heather Hudson, Wolverine is attacked by his old friend Vindicator and Alpha Flight, but Wolverine manages to hide in the trees to escape. Overhearing Vindicator say they need to bring him to a lab, Wolverine thinks back to when he received his adamantium skeleton. In the present, Jean Grey continues to search for Professor X, while in Canada, Alpha Flight manages to capture Wolverine. They bring him to a lab where Heather is waiting, and Wolverine recalls how she and Vindicator found him in the woods once, wild, and helped nurse him back to humanity and become part of Alpha Flight. General Chasen, Heather's superior, says they intend to find out how Wolverine survived the adamantium bonding process, with Heather adding she only agreed to help so she could be the one examining him. Meanwhile, Xavier & Magneto are confronted by a woman named Vertigo, who tries to kill them; Xavier & Magneto manage to escape. Back in Canada, Heather gives up on her examination of Wolverine and resigns, after which Wolverine breaks free. While Vindicator remains angry that Wolverine left them, the rest of Alpha Flight rush to Wolverine's aid, clearing out the robot guards ordered in by Chasen. Wolverine & Vindicator's fight is halted by Heather, and Wolverine leaves, telling Alpha Flight not to come looking for him again. 

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Saturday, December 12, 2020

Force in Focus: The Mandalorian Season 2x07

"The Believer"

Original Airdate
December 11th, 2020

Plot
With Cara Dune's help, the Mandalorian retrieves Migs Mayfeld from a New Republic prison, pressing him into helping locate Moff Gideon. To do so, Mayfeld says he will need to access an internal Imperial terminal, with one nearby on the world of Morak. On Morak, Mayfeld and the Mandalorian commandeer an Imperial transport and, disguised as Shoretroopers, proceed to a rhydonium refinery. Along the way, the transport is attacked by pirates attempting to destroy the rhydonium, but the Mandalorian manages to fight them off until they reach the refinery, where they are greeted as heroes. Inside, Mayfeld & the Mandalorian head toward the officer's mess; Mayfeld spots the terminal, but his former superior officer, Hess, is inside, requiring the Mandalorian to access it instead. To do so, he must remove his helmet. He gets the location of Gideon's ship, but draws the attention of Hess, and Mayfeld is forced to intervene, which leads to Mayfeld and the Mandalorian getting a drink with Hess. When Hess notes Mayfeld's familiarity, Mayfeld reminds him of their service together, and how Hess ordered the execution of a number of Mayfeld's fellow soldiers as part of Operation: Cinder. Mayfeld then shoots Hess, and the refinery explodes in gunfire. With Cara Dune & Fennec Shand providing cover from a nearby ridge, Mayfeld and the Mandalorian head to the roof of the refinery, where Boba Fett retrieves them in Slave I. As they fly off, Mayfeld fires back at the refinery, hitting the rhydonium and triggering an explosion that destroys the entire facility. Impressed with his actions, Cara Dune allows him to go free, suggesting he was officially killed in the explosion. Later, Moff Gideon receives a message from the Mandalorian, who tells him that soon the child will be back with him. 

Friday, December 11, 2020

X-amining Wolverine #102

"Unspoken Promises"
June 1996

In a Nutshell
A quasi-silent issue that formally introduces Elektra to the book. 

Script: Larry Hama
Pencils: Adam Kubert
Inks: Dan Green
Letters: Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Colors: Joe Rosas & Malibu Hues
Editor: Bob Harras

Plot
Wolverine, still in a devolved, animalistic state, steals out of the X-Mansion and heads into the city atop a commuter train. In the city, a teen boy sneaks out of his apartment to meet a friend; his mother gives money to a beggar, then bumps into Wolverine. His appearance startles her, but she gives him money regardless, thinking him a beggar. The boy and his friend rob a drug dealer, but the friend shoots a young couple who witness the encounter. Drawn by the shots, Wolverine kills the friend and chases after the boy. He fires a few shots at Wolverine, wounding him, before falling onto the tracks of an approaching train. Wolverine draws nearer and smells the boy's mother on him; remembering her kindness, he pulls the boy off the tracks, then collapses from the gunshot wounds. Just then, the drug dealer catches up to them, but Elektra steps in, stabbing the drug dealer and saving Wolverine & the boy. Wolverine gives the boy back his mother's money, and sends him home. 

Thursday, December 10, 2020

X-amining X-Force #55

"Without a Net"
June 1996

In a Nutshell
X-Force invades the SHIELD helicarrier to rescue Cyclops

Writer: Jeph Loeb
Penciler: Adam Pollina
Inker: Mark Morales
Letterer: Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Colorist: Marie Javins
Enhancements: Malibu
Editor-in-Chief: Bob Harras

Plot
Split into pairs, X-Force breaks into the SHIELD helicarrier on a mission for the X-Men. Their intrusion is not undetected by SHIELD, but head of security Dum-Dum Dugan is forced to defer his response to someone else. As the team penetrates deeper into the facility, Siryn wonders why the team isn't looking for the missing Warpath instead, while Meltdown hacks into a SHIELD computer and discovers Sabretooth is still alive. The team convenes outside the massive door to a locked chamber, and works together to crack the door open. Inside, they find the captive Cyclops - their mission objective - as well as a cadre of SHIELD agents led by GW Bridge, who has been placed in command of the operation. Cable telekinetically removes the apparatus holding back Cylops' blast then ricochets the blast throughout the chamber, knocking out the SHIELD forces. X-Force and Cyclops escape to the waiting Blackbird, cloaked nearby, piloted by Jean Grey, leaving Dum-Dum furious with Bridge. Meanwhile, in Florida, Warpath is recovering from his encounter with Selene, tended to by Risque, who despite his recovery, doesn't want him to leave. 

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

X-amining X-Men (vol. 2) #53

"False Fronts"
June 1996

In a Nutshell
Onslaught reveals himself to Jean Grey

Writer: Mark Waid
Pencils: Andy Kubert
Inkers: Cam Smith & John Dell
Letterer: Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Colorist: Digital Chameleon
Editor: Bob Harras

Plot
Jean Grey is shopping in Salem Center. Entering a dressing room to try on a dress, she is pulled onto the Astral Plane by Onslaught. Meanwhile, an imprisoned Beast accidentally breaks the apparatus delivering him food & water, but in doing so, reveals a possible escape route. On the Astral Plane, Onslaught confronts Jean with the duplicity & hypocrisy of humans, showing her the thoughts of the clerks at the clothing store then taking her Graydon Creed's campaign headquarters. Jean is nonplussed, saying that she buoys herself up by being surrounded by honest friends. In Colorado, Juggernaut emerges from the shadows threatening Archangel & Psylocke. Frightened, he tries to tell them crucial information, but discovers his mind is blocked from speaking it. He proceeds to march off towards the X-Mansion, convinced only Xavier can help him. Back on the Astral Plane, Onslaught brings Jean to the mind of Xavier, revealing his one-time romantic love for Jean, a secret she never knew. Onslaught ponders the possible consequences of Xavier keeping his emotions locked away so tightly. In South Carolina, Joseph wanders into a county fair. Elsewhere, Onslaught asks Jean to join him. She refuses, attacking him and asking who he really is. He says that he is a god, then sends her crashing back into the dressing room, his final words echoing in her mind - "know my name" - as she looks in the mirror and sees the word "Onslaught" telepathically etched onto her forehead. 

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

X-amining X-Men: The Animated Series Season 2 Episode 04 - Patreon First!

 "Red Dawn"

Original Airdate
November 13, 1993

Producer: Larry Houston
Story: Steven Melching
Storyboard Artist: Larry Houston
Story Editor Developer: Eric Lewald
Writers: Francis Moss & Ted Pedersen

Plot
Xavier & Magneto survive their plunge over the falls, but upon climbing out of the water, are attacked by a massive dinosaur. Magneto manages to lure it towards a geyser, which explodes, scaring it off. Meanwhile, in Russia, a group of former Soviets, aided by the mutant Darkstar, revive Omega Red. In New York, Jubilee is attacked by a group of Friends of Humanity thugs, but is saved by Colossus, who is looking for the X-Men's help to liberate his homeland from Omega Red. Leaving a note, Jubilee goes with Colossus to Russian, where they find his home destroyed and his parents captive, but his sister alive. Meanwhile, Wolverine sees Jubilee's note and flies to Russia, knowing Omega Red as an old enemy. When Jubilee & Colossus try to liberate Colossus' parents, Omega Red attacks them. Just then, Wolverine arrives and manages to fight him off. They are soon joined by Rogue, Storm and Gambit. Colossus rallies a small army of people against Omega Red and the Soviet forces, and they are joined by Darkstar, who defects to their side in the face of Omega Red's cruelty. She suggests Storm use her powers to plunge Omega Red back into the deep freeze he was previously held in, ending his threat for the time being. Colossus is offered a place with the X-Men but declines, preferring to stay in Russia and help rebuild his family's farm.

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Saturday, December 5, 2020

Force in Focus: The Mandalorian Season 2x06

"The Tragedy"

Original Release Date
December 4, 2020

Plot
The Mandalorian and the child arrive on Typhon, and proceed to a temple-like structure. But when the child is placed on a plinth surrounded by ritualistic stones, nothing happens. Just then, the Mandalorian spots an approaching ship. Spooked, he prepares to leave with the child, but when he turns to get him, he discovers Grogu in some kind of trance, surrounded by an impenetrable field of blue energy. Checking on the new arrivals, he is forced into a stalemate by Fennec Shand and her ally, Boba Fett, seeking the armor the Mandalorian acquired from Cobb Vanth.. The trio make a deal: safe passage off the planet by the Mandalorian and the child in exchange for Boba Fett's armor. Just then, Imperial forces arrive on the planet. As Stormtroopers swarm towards the child, the Mandalorian & Fennec fight to hold them back, while Boba Fett dons his armor and joins the fray. However, Moff Gideon's Star Destroyer arrives in the atmosphere and destroys the Razor Crest, after which he dispatches a force of Dark Troopers which manage to capture the child. As the Imperials depart, Boba Fett tells the Mandalorian he intends to honor their agreement and ensure the child is safe, and brings him to Navarro, where the Mandalorian enlists Cara Dune's aid to find someone who can help him track Moff Gideon. Meanwhile, Gideon visits the captive Grogu, marveling at the Force abilities which exhaust him, then leaving the child along in his cell, shackled and powerless. 

Friday, December 4, 2020

X-amining X-Man #16

"Survivors of the Storm"
June 1996

In a Nutshell
Nate battles Holocaust 

Writer: Terry Kavanagh
Guest Penciler: Val Semeiks
Inker: Bud LaRosa
Letterer: Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Colorist: Mike Thomas
Enhancement: Graphic Colorworks
Editor: Jaye Gardner
Editor-in-Chief: Bob Harras

Plot
Holocaust attacks Nate, dropping the psychic shield Onsalught gave him in order to see the look of surprise on Nate's face when he reveals himself. Their fight threatens innocent bystanders, whose pain draws Threnody's attention. In Paris, Madelyne discovers Selene has returned. In Greece, Threnody tries to save whomever she can while Nate & Holocaust fight. Back in Paris, Selene outfits Madelyne in new risque attire, then sends her off to London to meet one of Selene's associates. In Greece, Holocaust tries to persuade Nate to join him; when he refuses, Holocaust taunts him with knowledge of Onslaught. When Threnody absorbs the dying energy of one of the bystanders, she attracts Holocaust's attention, who grabs her as a hostage, telling Nate to come with him willingly, or Threnody will die. Nate grudgingly agrees. 

Thursday, December 3, 2020

X-amining X-Factor #123

"It Begins...Again!"
June 1996

In a Nutshell
Sabretooth helps X-Factor defeat the Hound

Writer: Howard Mackie
Penciler: Jeff Matsuda
Inker: Al Milgrom
Letterer: Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Colorist: Glynis Oliver
Enhancements: Malibu
Editor: Kelly Corvese
Editor-in-Chief: Bob Harras

Plot
Sabretooth lunges at X-Factor, seemingly to attack them, but instead, he strikes the Hound that was threatening them from behind. He tells Val Cooper this is why he was sent to this facility, to take out the Hound that had previously targeted Mystique. He & Wild Child distract the Hound while Polaris drops enough rubble on him to incapacitate him. The threat seemingly nullified, Forge proceeds to search the base's computer for information. Meanwhile, government operatives break into Fall's Edge, hoping to hack into Forge's computers, but the holographic Shard emerges and chases them off. Back at the mysterious base, the Hound emerges from the rubble. Polaris taps deep into her power and is able to briefly take control of the Hound and interrogate him, but he knows very little about his own origins. Just then, more government agents enter the facility, ordering X-Factor to stand down. At Graydon Creed's campaign headquarters, Creed receives a visitor who gives him a large sum of money, but also tells him Mystique will be kept alive in order to keep him in check. Base at the base, the Hound is taken into custody, and X-Factor - along with Sabretooth - is told to leave, with little explanation. When Val returns the next day with Senator Kelly, the base is gone, with nothing but a government farm in place. Later, she returns to Fall's Edge, and is confronted by Sabretooth, who tells her he's pleased with his current arrangement, but she should watch out, as she may be the next one to be fixed with a restraining collar. 

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

X-amining Uncanny X-Men #333

"The Other Shoe"
June 1996

In a Nutshell
The X-Men infiltrate the Pentagon and encounter Bastion, leader of the new multi-national anti-mutant Operation: Zero Tolerance. 

Writer: Scott Lobdell
Guest Penciler: Pascual Ferry
Inkers: Tim Townsend, Hunter, Morales & Hunt
Letters: Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Colors: Team Bucce
Editor-in-Chief: Bob "Don't Call Me Chief" Harras

Plot
Late one night, Senator Kelly receives an expected visitor: Cyclops. He tells Cyclops he needs help. Meanwhile, a group of X-Men are hovering, cloaked, over the Pentagon, as Gambit & Jean Grey infiltrate the building in an attempt to observe an important meeting. They join a crowd entering a room labeled "Operation: Zero Tolerance". Meanwhile, in Colorado, Archangel is training with Psylocke as both attempt to recover from their recent injuries, when they are attacked by a massive psionic presence asking for help, which knocks them both out. At the Pentagon, Gambit & Jean watch a presentation from Bastion, the leader of the multi-national Zero Tolerance operation that hopes to end the threat of mutants once and for all. At Senator Kelly's home, Kelly warns Cyclops about Operation: Zero Tolerance, saying it's worse than previous anti-mutant government programs. Just then, one of Graydon Creed's men tries to assassinate Kelly, with Cyclops moving to protect the senator as his house explodes in flames. At the Pentagon, Bastion reveals he is aware of Gambit & Jean's presence, and they are forced to fight their way out, though Jean is disturbed to find the guards waiting outside fast asleep, a gift from Onslaught. In Colorado, Psylocke & Archangel wake up, but an ominous shadow looms over them. 

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

X-amining X-Men: The Animated Series Season 2 Episode 03 - Patreon First!

"Whatever It Takes"

Original Airdate
November 6th, 1993

Producer: Larry Houston
Story: Steven Melching
Storyboard Artist: Larry Houston
Story Editor Developer: Eric Lewald
Writer: Julia Jane Lewald

Plot
Playing with his friends in the shadow of Mount Kilimanjaro, the young mutant M'jnari spots a seeming tear in the air his friends can't see; the Shadow King emerges from it, and possesses the boy. At the X-Mansion, Jean Grey, while using Cerebro to search for Professor X, detects the Shadow King's emergence, which Beast attributes to a rift in the Astral Plane. Realizing the rift is near her former village, Storm sets out for Africa with Rogue. Meanwhile, Wolverine tracks Morph to a bar in South America. Later, Storm & Rogue arrive in Africa and confront the Shadow King-possessed M'jnari, who agrees to give up the boy to take control of Storm. She agrees. In South America, Wolverine and Morph fight, with Wolverine trying to convince Morph to come home. Morph refuses, saying he needs to figure things out on his own, and Wolverine eventually relents. Back in Africa, Storm is able to assert control long enough to fly into the upper atmosphere, driving the Shadow King from her body. With the tear in the Astral Plane closing, M'jnari races through, drawing the Shadow King with him. He then turns around, and manages to get through the opening, with a little help from Rogue, just before it closes, trapping the Shadow King once more. Meanwhile, Magneto & Xavier emerge from the avalanche to find themselves in a tropical jungle which Magneto recognizes as the Savage Land. Powerless, they are attacked by natives riding on Pteranodons, and end up diving into a river, with the current carrying them over a waterfall.  

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