Talking about comic books, TV shows, movies, sports, and the numerous other pastimes that make us Gentlemen of Leisure.

Tuesday, February 28, 2023

60 Years of X - 1969

 Year 7: 1969

1969 X-Men Comics & Appearances: X-Men #54-65, Sub-Mariner #14

Neal Adams saves the X-Men! Roy Thomas returns! So do the Sentinels & Professor X! Magneto gets a face! Havok, Sauron, Sunfire, the Savage Land mutates (& the Living Monolith...) debut!

037 - Year 7 Cover: X-Men #56

Somewhat famously, this is the second version of this cover, as the first was rejected by publisher Martin Goodman. Neal Adams' revision to it is still a banger though, and oft homaged. 

038 - Year 7 Creator: Neal Adams

Who else? Not only did Adams reinvigorate the series & help the X-Men survive past 1970, his innovations in coloring, layouts, panel/page composition & more gave new words to the visual language of comics. 

039 - Year 7 Character: Havok

In a year w/several character debuts (including two future X-Men & one major recurring villain), Havok, who will go on anchor a few future lineups, gets the nod for a strong first half of the year in which he dons one of the simplest but most iconic looks

040 - Year 7 Comic: X-Men #59

With the series doing more serialized stories, this is the year where it gets hard to pick just one issue. I'll go w/the end of the Sentinels arc, featuring Brotherhood cosplay, all the mutants & Claremont's victory-by-logic capper. 

041 - Year 7 Fun Fact: All in Color!

As Brian lays out in this article, by pushing Marvel to give him access to the full range of gradients for interior art starting w/X-Men #56, Neal Adams set a new standard for comic book coloring.

042 - Year 7 Memorable Moment: Repelling the Z'Nox!

Xavier returns to lead the X-Men in uniting human consciousness and shooting it at aliens, an early (& largely nonsensical) example of a mutant circuit & an event which'll help kickoff the Phoenix Saga!


  1. I can’t argue your choices except maybe the cover of #56, which is definitely striking but not a personal favorite. Given my general unfamiliarity with X-Men continuity beyond the years I was a die-hard fan, Havok’s later exploits are less of an argument for his impact to me than the striking visuals Adams created for him — that solid black suit without any cheats to suggest detail and those perfect concentric circles depicting his energy that appear to the reader straight on with the same unchanging perspective as Mickey Mouse’s ears. I absolutely love the Scarlet Witch in the middle panel of the middle page you selected from #59 too.

  2. It's too bad Marvel didn't know they had a hit on their hands until Neal Adams was already gone. On the other hand, if they had known it's extremely unlikely we ever would have gotten Claremont on the book.

    What could have been...


Comment. Please. Love it? Hate it? Are mildly indifferent to it? Let us know!