X-Men: Gold may be in the headlines for all the wrong reasons right now, but there’s a lot more children of the atom on the way this month as Marvel kicks off its own rebirth of those special few mutants who are hated and feared by a society that they’re sworn to protect. X-Men: Blue is the second core team book out now, starring a younger time-displaced team of the original X-Men: Jean Grey, Cyclps, Beast, Angel and Iceman.
Stuck in a future that has been nothing but hostile to them, the Blue Team is looking to redeem their future selves for some terrible mistakes made when the Phoenix Force returned to Earth. But just how far are they willing to go? Spoilers below.
Right, so writer Cullen Bunn and his art team of Jorge Molina, Matteo Buffagni, Matt Milla and Joe Caramagna have laid down the ground rules right from the start. The younger X-Men are pretty much stuck in their future timeline for good, unable to travel backwards thanks to the timestream being a fickle mistress and Age of Ultron revealing that the very fabric of reality was this close to being ripped apart like wet tissue paper should another major time anomaly occur.
So what’s a team of young mutants supposed to do when most of Homo Superior hates them for actions that they’ve yet to commit? Break out on their own and keep the world safe as an independent team of X-Men. Issue number the one of X-Men; Blue throws the gang back into the deep end, as they have to use their wits and skills to stop B-lister foe Black Tom Cassidy from robbing a yacht. Oh, the Juggernaut is also there and if you happen to be clued in all things related to Cyttorak, you’d happen to know that he’s now powerful enough to kill even the god who granted him his unstoppable might.
Minus an appearance from Rogue that results in a nightmare fuel scream, it’s all solid action with beautiful art to back it up: Black Tom is quickly taken out of the equation and the X-Men learn that while the Juggernaut may be unstoppable he can still be redirected towards more…hellish directions by Beast’s new appreciation for the mystic arts.
While the majority of the issue may be a standard X-Men adventure, it’s ending certainly isn’t as it serves not one but two big surprises. First up, while Jean Grey may be team leader, the squad is now under the magnetic mentorship of none other than Magneto. Former foe turned ally, Magneto might be mutantkind’s greatest figurehead now that Charles Xavier is dead. Until he wants to drop an asteroid on a military base I suppose, but that’s a plot for another day.
Plot twist deux? Let’s just say that I’m chuffed to right again. Marvel teased the return of another Wolverine a few weeks ago and out of all the mutants around who shared a similar mutation, I theorised that Ultimate Universe might have had one more survivor besides Reed Richards and Miles Morales: Jimmy Hudson, the son of the Wolverine of that dimension. Just like Magneto, I was right:
“I’m really excited to see this character become part of the team,” X-Men Blue editor Mark Pannicia said to ComicBook.com.
Aside from the fact that he is a kindred spirit, displaced as the Original X-Men are… he’ll also feed into some themes X-Men fans are very familiar with. Like the original Wolverine, Jimmy doesn’t remember his past. And like the original Wolverine, he’s going to find a certain red head very attractive. Will this cause problems with Cyclops? Heheh. Just have to wait and see.
What’s an X-Men book without a love triangle between Cyclops, Jean Grey and Wolverine? Not angsty enough, that’s what. Hey, this is pretty much the closest I’ll get to that Three’s Company reboot that I’ve been dreaming of.