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Welcome back, superhero enthusiasts, fans of the 2099 universe of Marvel Comics, 1990s culture enthusiasts and comic book collectors! Today we revisit the X-Men 2099 comic book series by focusing on the 14th issue of the series. As recalled in X-Men 2099 #10, team leader Xi’an reverted back to his more sadistic personality as demons from his past came back to overwhelm him. In the issues that followed, Xi’an went away from the X-Men followed by Tim/Skullfire who himself has gotten more wild and more aligned with their leader. They also encountered Luna, the former member of the Theatre of Pain. As the three went around more, something even more significant happened to Xi’an (note: this was part of the build-up leading to the big events in X-Men 2099 #25).
With those details laid down, here is a look back at X-Men 2099 #14, published by Marvel Comics in 1994 with a story written by John Francis Moore and drawn by Ron Lim.
The story begins on an island where the big-time personality Danielle has a mansion. She is about to start spending quality time with a man named Alexi. It turns out Danielle has wings with feathers that are colored to resemble a rainbow. She floats with Alexi as they enjoy the function of the zero-gravity chamber.
After grabbing her, Alexi surprises Danielle by suddenly flying up several feet high above using a gadget he equipped. In a very cold manner, he lets go of her causing her to land hard on the sea below. Alexi then flies away to an unknown destination.
Meanwhile at the ranch house of Zhao which the X-Men have been staying at since Xi’an left them, Skullfire returns and this time Luna is with him. The sight of Luna enrages Henri/Meanstreak as he encountered her before when she was still a member of the Theatre of Pain. As the tension intensified, Henri tries to go after Luna but Skullfire stands in the way and reveals that Xi’an has joined the Theatre of Pain.
This shocks Henri and Krystalin. For Shakti, however, it was expected…
In this comic book, John Francis Moore really kept on focusing on developing the X-Men while keeping the narrative fresh with twists and the occasional moments of shock. While the cover of this comic book expressed the return of the other X-Men member Eddie/Metalhead (who stayed behind and separated from Xi’an’s mutants), the story here surprisingly had much less focus on the X-Men of 2099 and focused more on the Freakshow (which Metalhead is now part of).
Adding more depth to the surprise change of focus, the Freakshow here developed quite a lot as the group visits a new place and meets with a new group of people led by someone Mama Hurricane (head of the Freakshow) knew. As the development of the Freakshow went on, so did the creative team’s continued emphasis of the lore of the 2099 universe in the western region of the United States.
X-Men 2099 #14 (1994) is one of the more unusual stories that John Francis Moore and Ron Lim came up with. The X-Men themselves ended up with a minority of the narrative although the revelation of Xi’an taking sides with a super villain literally left some vibrations for readers. This plus the stronger focus on the Freakshow and the addition of Alexi as a powerful newcomer to the saga added to the build-up leading to X-Men 2099 #25. The good news here is that the story was solidly told by Moore and did not have a single boring moment for me.
If you are seriously planning to buy an existing hard copy of X-Men 2099 #14 (1994), be aware that as of this writing, MileHighComics.com shows that the near-mint copy of the regular edition costs $30 while the near-mint copy of the newsstand edition costs $90.
Overall, X-Men 2099 #14 (1994) is recommended.
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