A Look Back at What If #27 (1981)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1980s arts and culture enthusiasts, Marvel Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the early 1980s and examine an alternate universe portrayal of the X-Men and the Dark Phoenix saga itself as told in one of the comic books of the first volume of the series What If.

So much has been discussed about the Dark Phoenix saga of the Uncanny X-Men series through the decades. A lot point to it as the greatest X-Men ever told while some called it the true X-Men epic story that Chris Claremont and John Byrne came up with. Considering its deep impact and significance on the Marvel Comics shared universe, it was only a matter of time before the publisher decided to revisit the said storyline but explore other outcomes through the What If series.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at What If #27 published in 1981 by Marvel Comics with a story written by Mary Jo Duffy and drawn by Jerry Bingham.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with the Watcher looking back at the events that led to the Dark Phoenix saga, who got impacted and how Jean Grey used a weapon of alien origin to end her own life and prevent the Dark Phoenix from raging.

Suddenly, an alternate reality begins when Jean Grey survives and Cyclops reacts by using his optic blasts on incoming enemies until he got overwhelmed. The X-Men have been defeated and are brought to the imperial flagship of Lilandra’s grand fleet where the Shi’ar scientists prepare for the destruction of Phoenix.

Jeay Grey remains alive, floating above the X-Men and the others as Lilandra’s people prepare to start the process of the psychic lobotomizer on her. Their intention is to act upon Jean Grey’s brain and destroy certain parts of it in order to neutralize the Phoenix power within her. The operation turned out successful and Jean Grey survives once more. She and her fellow X-Men return to Earth…

Quality

This conflict between Phoenix-powered Jean Grey and Galactus is a must-see.

This early, I can say that this is a very great exploration and portrayal of the concept about Phoenix (within Jean Grey) not dying during the Dark Phoenix saga. The script of this comic book is so great (note: solid plot structure, consistent portrayals of the characters, strong build-up with solid pay-off and more), it’s almost as if Mary Jo Duffy and Chris Claremont worked together behind the scenes.

The protagonist in this story is Jean Grey and this comic book examines her struggle with adjusting her personal life and her effort to fit in once again within the X-Men while remembering fully that as Dark Phoenix, she still remains guilty of destroying an entire solar system and committing the mass murder of five billion people.

Unsurprisingly, due to the emergence of a tremendous crisis deep in space, Jean Grey gets involved with her team going to the site on a mission. This easily puts her into a situation that makes her revive the power of the Phoenix deep within herself. While the use of the tremendous power of the Phoenix to help the X-Men looked sensible at first glance, it only signified the beginning of a chain of destruction and unfortunate developments. As expected, Jean Grey can only go so far with her good nature and her free will while having the magnificent powers of the Phoenix.

While the conflicts were portrayed well, Mary Jo Duffy’s script raises key questions about the red-head X-Men member: How can Jean Grey ever achieve a normal life and level with her X-Men teammates knowing that she carries powers that make her god-like? How can she ever forget the tragic fact that as Dark Phoenix, she murdered billions in deep space? What can Charles Xavier do to lead and guide the X-Men knowing that Jean is way too powerful? Could the love of Cyclops be helpful for Jean Grey’s personal efforts to control the Phoenix power within?

Another highlight of this story is the final seven pages. The ending is very impactful and definitely something you must see.

Conclusion

This happened after Jean Grey’s survival.

What If #27 (1981) is a classic alternate reality portrayal of the Marvel Comics universe and it surely works as a companion piece to what was established in the Dark Phoenix saga. Mary Jo Duffy’s script really captured the spirit of Claremont’s X-Men and the dramatic stuff and all the build-up led to a very tremendous ending that can disturb you or even satisfy you in the most unusual way. Most notably, this comic book really answered the question about what would happen had Phoenix did not die. The 2nd tale of this comic book – the Kree Encounter – is an interesting additive.

Overall, What If #27 (1981) is highly recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at What If #31 (1982)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1980s arts and culture enthusiasts, Marvel Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the early 1980s and examine an alternate universe portrayal of Wolverine and some other characters as told in one of the comic books of the first volume of the series What If.

Wolverine is one of the most iconic characters of Marvel Comics and he has been part of some of my retro reviews (click here, here, here, here, here, here and here). Wolverine made his first appearance in comics in Incredible Hulk #181 which was published way back in 1974 which marked the first conflict of the two Marvel icons. Years later, Marvel decided to revisit that event with a What If story.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at What If #31 published in 1982 by Marvel Comics with a story written by Rick Margopoulos and drawn by Bob Budiansky.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with Wolverine and the Hulk in combat with each other in a forest within Canada. It turns out, Wolverine was sent by Canadian authorities to capture not just the Hulk but also the Wendigo.

With the Wendigo down on the ground, Wolverine and the Hulk struggle with each other. The Canadian’s speed helped him dodge the green giant’s powerful punches and as the fight goes on, so does the impulse and emotion from within. Suddenly, Wolverine decides to deliberately disobey his orders by deciding to kill the Hulk. In a few but strategic strikes with his Adamantium claws, Wolverine kills the Hulk. The Canadian authorities eventually got rid of the corpses of the Wendigo and the Hulk.

Soon enough, news about the Hulk’s death spread like wildfire all over America catching the attention of Spider-Man, the Avengers, the Fantastic Four and General Ross and his daughter Betty…

Quality

Wolverine gets abducted not by aliens from outer space but by Magneto and his Brotherhood of Evil Mutants.

To start with, I can say that I immensely enjoyed this alternate portrayal of the events that happened in relation to Wolverine’s first-ever appearance in comics. For one thing, the concept of Wolverine actually killing the Hulk is not only shocking on its own, it also set a chain reaction of events that involved or affect a whole lot of other characters within the Marvel Comics shared universe.

Let me start with Wolverine himself. As the story was set before he joined the X-Men, you will see Wolverine as a super-powered agent of Canada whose career really goes down as he failed to restrain his wild self from killing not once but twice. This results in a Wolverine who is deeply troubled with guilt and becomes desperate believing that running away and hiding will somehow solve his dilemma.

Wolverine’s entry into a gang of evil mutants led by Magneto (note: this comic book’s main villain) is itself worth getting this comic book. This shows Magneto – always obsessed with his belief that mutants are superior to humans – putting his diabolical plan into action with Wolverine as the key participant. This itself led to Wolverine’s encounter with the X-Men (the one team he was destined in reality to be with).

The creative team clearly exerted a lot of effort to not only ensure the plot made sense but also have a solid structure that can accommodate twists, intrigue and superhero spectacle altogether complete with enough room for character development. Lastly, I should say that this comic book’s climax is both compelling and shocking to read.

Conclusion

Wolverine’s 2nd kill in this comic book.

What If #31 (1982) is indeed a great Marvel comic book to read. It has a very engaging alternate universe portrayal of Wolverine and this paved the way for a new and fresh approach on showcasing how the X-Men and Magneto’s gang reacted with the clawed Canadian. While the scope of the consequence of Wolverine’s killing of the Hulk ultimately ending up narrowing on Marvel’s mutants could be disappointing for those who seek a bigger impact on other Marvel universe characters, what was shown here in this comic book still made sense and ultimately turned out believable. This comic book also has another tale exploring what if there was no Fantastic Four which ultimately ended up as a decent additive.

Overall, What If #31 (1982) is highly recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at X-Men Adventures #10 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back, superheo enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts, X-Men fans and comic book collectors! Today we revisit the X-Men Adventures monthly series which was the literary adaptation of the popular X-Men animated series of the 1990s.  

If you are a long-time X-Men fan who enjoyed the comic books and the movies, then the cover of this particular X-Men Adventures issue that has Rogue on it should remind you of the mutant cure concept portrayed in the 2006 movie X-Men: The Last Stand. In the said movie, it was Rogue who went out to have her mutant powers neutralized so that she can live a normal life and no longer worry about absorbing another person’s life force.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at X-Men Adventures #10, published by Marvel Comics in 1993 with a story written by Ralph Macchio and drawn by Andrew Wildman.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with the arrival of Cable outside a private home in the Swiss Alps. Inside, Warren Worthington (Angel) and Gisela spend quality time together by the fire. They talk about a certain Dr. Adler who is a genetics expert that Worthington sent to Scotland to conduct research.

Suddenly, Cable breaks into the place and points his gun at Worthington looking for Dr. Adler. While talking, Worthington reaches for a gun and fire it at Cable. The huge armed mutant then grabs Worthington by the head and throws him out of the home and into the snow. In response to Cable’s question, Gisela mentions that Dr. Adler has gone to Scotland. Moments later, Worthington (in his angel form) flies back into the house to protect Gisela from whatever harm Cable could do to her.

Over at Muir Island, Professor X and his long-time colleague Dr. Moira MacTaggert discuss the facility and research done there. Xavier mentions that the core of the research done by the mysterious Dr. Adler. Moira states that Adler is not officially part of the research center and he simply pays for everything he uses there.

After failing to meet Dr. Adler inside his research office, Xavier conducts a mind probe which causes a series of stake images enter his consciousness. The experience was so intense, his telepathic inquiry got disrupted abruptly. Professor X then decides to contact the X-Men…     

Quality

Rogue goes through a lot in her pursuit to become normal.

Let me start with the concept of Rogue’s pursuit to cure herself of her genetic mutation…compared to the 2006 live-action X-Men movie, the plot in this literal adaptation of the X-Men animated series episode makes more sense and is more believable to follow. Without spoiling the identities (note: to find out who they are, read this comic book), I can say that there are sinister forces behind the genetic works of Adler within the Muir Island facility. The Adler operation is just part of a grand scheme that the sinister forces have been working on and Rogue’s involvement was a surprise addition. More on Rogue’s pursuit of getting normal, what was portrayed in this adaptation was nicely structured while also cleverly avoiding the “doing it all for the sake of love” cliché. In short, she made her pursuit not for her romance with Gambit but to really change her life significantly, even if it means losing her membership with the X-Men. Through her actions, you will feel Rogue becoming desperate and reckless to be normal.

Apart from the tale of Rogue, the X-Men meanwhile have been handling themselves without Professor X and Cyclops clearly carries the responsibility of leading them all. As for Charles Xavier, his departure has been explained and incidentally he has gotten close to danger even though Dr. Moira MacTaggert is with him. The writing in this adaptation is filled with suspense, surprises and intrigue which were nicely executed with concise timing.

Conclusion

Charles Xavier makes contact with his team from far-away.

X-Men Adventures #10 (1993) is a very good read. Anyone who saw the half-baked mutant cure aspect of the 2006 X-Men movie will find the Rogue tale here more satisfying to read. This is definitely Rogue’s story with some spotlight shared with the X-Men, two other mutants who served as opposition for Rogue, and the sinister forces I mentioned. This comic book is actually the first of two parts focused on Muir Island and it certainly is a really satisfying reading experience on its own.  

Overall, X-Men Adventures #10 (1993) is recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.

A Look Back at What If #40 (1992)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s arts and culture enthusiasts, Marvel Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the year 1992 and explore a part of Marvel Comics’ universe through the reimagined tales emphasized in the What If monthly series.

For this particular retro comic book review, we look at a What If tale that is related with the X-Men, specifically through one of their major characters – Storm. For the newcomers reading, Storm is the black X-Men member whose mutation allows her to manipulate the weather. As seen in X-Men comic books decades ago, Storm was portrayed to be tough and brave, and she became a highly valuable learner under Professor X (Charles Xavier). In the 1990s, Storm rose in prominence among the X-Men, she became leader of their Gold Team. Storm was portrayed in the live-action movies by Halle Berry and Alexandra Shipp. It’s just too bad Storm’s role in X-Men: Days of Future Past (note: for me, it is the best X-Men live-action movie ever) was minimal.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at What If #40, published in 1992 by Marvel Comics with a story written by Ann Nocenti and drawn by Steve Carr and Deryl Skeleton.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with the Watcher recalling scenes from the life of Ororo who was born to a mother (a tribal princess in Kenya) and a photojournalist father. After moving from America to Egypt, Ororo loses her mother and became an orphan. Along the way, she experienced severe claustrophobia as a result of being buried under tons of rock. Having survived, she became a thief in Cairo and eventually traveled into Africa by chance. There she discovered her true nature as a walking idol. She eventually meets Charles Xavier.

The Watcher then explores another thread of scenarios of Ororo’s life in which she never stepped on the eventual boat, never sailed for Africa and never met the tribe that worshipped her.

In Cairo, Ororo is a very young thief who made herself look like a male. She uses deceptive tactics on a foreigner who walked by. A short time later, Ororo goes to New York City identified as Jack serving an old man who teaches her to work hard, to gain respect from his friends and immerse herself in a world of grifters and hobos. Ororo lives and works as a thief in the city targeting people who have more than enough…

Quality

A look at Storm as the super-powered thief. It’s also a portrayal of her as a super villain on the rise.

Among the many What If tales related to the X-Men that I have read so far, this is one of the most well-written and most intriguing alternate universe stories I have read thanks to Ann Nocenti. This was also released at a time when Storm was already established as a brave X-Men team leader and a potential successor to Professor X. In this comic book, there is this strong twist to the established legacy of Storm as a youth and the exploration of what would happen had she remained a thief (a super-powered thief no less) and never followed Charles Xavier turned out to be very compelling in my experience. For one thing, Storm definitely would have given police officers – who clearly are inferior to the powered heroes and villains – a hard time and even help the crime wave overwhelm society’s defenders. It is also quite striking to see Storm to follow and serve a principled yet theft-oriented superior. In fact, this story shows the popular X-Men team leader as a super villain on the rise.

More on storm, Ann Nocenti’s script literally dissected notable traits of Storm’s personality that are connected to the established comic book legacy which creatively created something new that fits in well in this alternate universe story. Through Storm, the story also sheds light on how thieves view life believing that theft is a necessity and their so-called principles justify it. No matter what the thieves and criminals in general think, nothing justifies theft and crime at all and those who commit such acts must be punished accordingly Without spoiling the details, I can say that there are some grey areas within Storm that were nicely emphasized.

Conclusion

Storm as a male-looking teenager behind bars with the ladies who got apprehended. Scenes like this should remind you NOT to vote for political candidates who are soft and sympathetic towards crime.

What If #40 (1990) is indeed a great alternate universe portrayal of one of the X-Men’s most prominent characters of the time. The story is very well structured and the characterization of Storm was clearly organized by Ann Nocenti to be powerful and intriguing to read. This comic book also has a twist that you must see for yourselves as well as an ending that will either surprise or satisfy you depending on what you anticipated. Ultimately, this comic book should remind you all to avoid committing crime and the truth is that poverty is a curse and it NEVER justifies theft. Always remember that the Lord is watching you. For enlightenment, read Exodus 22:1-4, Exodus 22:10-15, Leviticus 6:2-7 and 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 in the Holy Bible.

Overall, What If #40 (1990) is highly recommended!

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at X-Men Adventures #11 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back, superheo enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts, X-Men fans and comic book collectors! Today we revisit the X-Men Adventures monthly series which was the literary adaptation of the popular X-Men animated series of the 1990s.  

In this retro review, we take a look at the adaptation of the animated series’ own portrayal of the Muir Island saga from the comic books. Also there is Rogue who desired to have her genetic mutation cured, even though it means removing her super strength, flying ability and her dangerous touch.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at X-Men Adventures #11, published by Marvel Comics in 1993 with a story written by Ralph Macchio and drawn by Andrew Wildman.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with Rogue emerging from the rubble of a facility on Muir Island. She remembers that just moments earlier, Pyro and Avalanche ruined the facility just as she was about to get cured by a man she knows as Dr. Adler. She leaves the place searching for those responsible for the ruined facility. She fails to noticed that she is being observed from a distance.

Elsewhere on the island, Pyro and Avalanche open a bag believing Dr. Adler is in it. To their shock, Mystique is the one who emerged and she reveals to them that she was just posing as Dr. Adler as part of her mission to lure mutants into taking the treatment not without realizing the truth that it will turn them into slaves of the one entity she serves…Apocalypse. Pyro explained that he and Avalanche hoped to hold Dr. Adler for ransom.

At a nearby cliff, Cable quietly watches using his rifle’s scope…

Quality

Cyclops and Jean Grey confront Cable!

To put things clearly, this one is pay-off to what was built up in issue #10 while also serving as the continuation of a multi-part story regarding Muir Island. In the previous issue, Rogue desired to become a normal individual which is why she went to Dr. Adler on the said island. In this comic book, the direction for Rogue took a drastic change fighting Pyro and Avalanche not knowing that Mystique is involved and secretly working to help her master Apocalypse execute his ambitious plan of gaining capable and controllable slaves from the mutant population.

The good news here is that the script is very well written and the narrative is really strong. Very notably, the superhero spectacle got clearly ramped up by several notches resulting in lots of action scenes as well as opportunities for Andrew Wildman to flex his artistic muscles making some dynamic action-packed images for readers to enjoy. Along the way, there is some suspense built-up related to the sub-plot within (note: Cable’s limited appearance here as well as the Jean Grey and Cyclops reuniting with their mentor Charles Xavier) as well as the Muir Island saga itself.

Indeed, this comic book has lots of spectacle that superhero enthusiasts will enjoy but still the Macchio-Wildman team managed to maintain the core themes of the story for readers to absorb and think about.

Conclusion

Dynamic action of Rogue taking on Pyro.

X-Men Adventures #11 (1993) is a very solid read from start to finish. Even as the narrative has lots of action scenes presented, the story still managed to maintain focus on the themes of sacrificing mutation to be normal humans, the temptations brought in by advanced scientific wonders, and the exploitation of people seeking hope and reform a lot. There are indeed moral lessons within this comic book reflect about. This is strong creative work by Macchio-Wildman that X-Men fans and newcomers should read and I can say there is more to come storywise beyond this comic book.

Overall, X-Men Adventures #11 (1993) is recommended!

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.

A Look Back at X-Men Adventures #15 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back, superheo enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts, X-Men fans and comic book collectors! Today we revisit the X-Men Adventures monthly series which was the literary adaptation of the popular X-Men animated series of the 1990s.  

Today is my review about the 15th and final issue of the X-Men Adventures adaptation of episodes of the 1st season of the popular animated series. The comic book at hand was the literary translation of the 13th episode and final episode of season one which was broadcast in March 1993.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at X-Men Adventures #15, published by Marvel Comics in 1993 with a story written by Ralph Macchio and drawn by Andrew Wildman.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins somewhere in Manhattan where a riot is happening. It turns out that multiple riots have occurred as a result of the of the recent kidnapping of United States Senator Robert Kelly who established himself as the nation’s most prominent anti-mutant public figure.

Deep inside their headquarters, the X-Men watch live news footage of the riot. Even though they were not involved in the kidnapping of Senator Kelly, Charles Xavier and his team are concerned that mutants like them will still be held responsible. The leader tells his team that they must find the missing senator quickly before the wave of intolerance affects all of them mutants. Xavier then starts using Cerebro which he programmed to search for any distortions in the magnetic field of planet Earth.

Elsewhere, inside a vessel that got shipwrecked along the Atlantic seaboard, Magneto has Senator Kelly as his captive. He tells the politician that he holds the key to the future and that they are in agreement that man and mutant cannot co-exist peacefully. For Magneto, the war for dominance must begin as humans remain weak and divided. Suddenly, a huge Sentinel breaks into the place…

Quality

The X-Men, Professor and Magneto.

Being the conclusion of the monthly series based on season one of the X-Men animated series, this comic book’s story packs a lot of stuff, intrigue and some memorable character moments. Thematically, the story emphasizes absolute power, intolerance and instability which got dramatized carefully as the narrative progressed.

For the X-Men, the pressure is tremendous as the stakes have gotten so high not just for them but for all mutants as a population. To fail to save the kidnapped Senator Kelly would cause society to become even more hostile to mutants which could compel the federal government to declare a state of emergency. Complicating matters here is Magneto’s obsession with power in connection with his biggest obsession that mutants are essentially superior over humans and that societies will be reformed – even with violence involved – accordingly. Adding even more the complexity of the situation are the presence of government, technology handlers backed by private financiers, and the one gigantic machine (that produces new Sentinels) that becomes self-aware.

The good news here is that the story is very well written, the narrative does not lose focus and the creative duo of Macchio-Wildman managed to craft a tale that consistently remained engaging complete with ensuring sufficient superhero spectacle for entertainment. As expected, the pay-offs executed for all the build-ups proved to be highly satisfying.

When it comes to characterization, everyone here acts and talks as expected. The team dynamics of the X-Men here make for a cerebral reading experience especially when they have these intense private meetings trying to solve their problems and anticipate what would happen next. The dialogue, filled with varied details, are richly written and yet easy to follow. I should state that having the Sentinels as a force of opposition under the control of a rogue AI added a lot to the stakes involved in the plot. The portrayal of machines acting superior over humans proved to be a unique parallel to the humans-mutants conflict.

Conclusion

The fictional US Senator Robert Kelly in trouble in the presence of Magneto and a Sentinel.

X-Men Adventures #15 (1993) is not only a worthy conclusion to the monthly series based on animated series’ season one episodes. It is indeed the best comic book of the said series that I have read thanks to the great adaptive works of the Macchio-Wildman team. The story had these very high stakes raised and ultimately the pay-off to all the build-up were great resulting in great satisfaction on my part as a reader. At the same time, there are certain key plot elements and character elements here that eventually made their way into the first X-Men live-action movie of 2000. The core story is the clear feature while the bonus pin-up section was the fun additive. This comic book is a must-have!

Overall, X-Men Adventures #15 (1993) is highly recommended!

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.

A Look Back at X-Men Adventures #9 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back, superheo enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts, X-Men fans and comic book collectors! Today we revisit the X-Men Adventures monthly series which was the literary adaptation of the popular X-Men animated series of the 1990s.  

Within the lore of the X-Men, Juggernaut is a significant supervillain who not only gave the X-Men a lot of trouble but also did the same with other heroes within the Marvel Comics shared universe. In the 2006 movie X-Men: The Last Stand, Juggernaut made his first-ever cinematic appearance. In 2018’s Deadpool 2, a new cinematic version of Juggernaut appeared. In my retro comic book review of What If #13 (1990), a different version of Juggernaut was featured by the creators.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at X-Men Adventures #9, published by Marvel Comics in 1993 with a story written by Ralph Macchio and drawn by Andrew Wildman.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with the X-Men (riding their jet) arriving from Genosha only to see a part of Professor X’s mansion destroyed. After landing, Cyclops, Wolverine and Jean Grey immediately searched through the rubble and found a path into the War Room. Using Cerebro, they uncovered a prepared video message of Professor X who tells them that he is taking a journey whose results may change their lives forever. After apologizing for the cryptic nature of the message, Xavier tells them that he trusts they will continue with their training and look after the School of Gifted Children in his absence.

The X-Men could not determine if their mentor left the mansion before the destruction took place. In response to Gambit’s question related to detection, Wolverine senses big foot prints and there was a familiar smell left behind. Wolverine decides to go out to keep following the scent which causes Cyclops to insist that the situation at hand is not the time for the team members to separate from each other.

After telling Cyclops he has places to go to, Wolverine then leaves his teammates with a motorcycle. Cyclops tells Storm to take Rogue and Jubilee with her to track Wolverine and stay close to him…

Quality

The sheer power of Juggernaut.

To describe this comic book’s story, I can say it was a fine mix of suspense, mystery and superhero spectacle. As the X-Men struggled to figure out how the damage on the mansion happened and where exactly did Charles Xavier go to, I felt this sense of dread backed with strong mystery. As the plot continued, there were these short-yet-notable character moments among the X-Men such as Gambit getting closer with Jean Grey who believes that she should be helping others on the field as her beloved Cyclops made a decision that kept her with him at the mansion.

The search for who is responsible for the mansion’s big damage creatively took notable paths in the story. One strong figure appeared and became a target of some X-Men members while another one became Wolverine’s target.

As expected, the highlight of this tale is Juggernaut himself and to say that he his huge and powerful is a big understatement. At this point of the X-Men Adventures monthly series, this is the one notable conflict that has multiple X-Men members struggling really hard fighting one single powerful enemy. In some ways, Juggernaut here looks like a much more dangerous foe than Magneto within this series. How the conflict in the story ended in a really intriguing yet sensible way which should resonate with X-Men fans. 

Conclusion

Only Cyclops, Gambit and Jean Grey (who wanted to do more) remained at the mansion.

X-Men Adventures #9 (1993) is fun and intriguing to read. At the stage of this monthly series, the X-Men are not only more developed but are also challenged deeply as their mentor is no longer around to lead them. This makes the path ahead look more enticing to anticipate.

Overall, X-Men Adventures #9 (1993) is recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.

A Look Back at X-Men Adventures #6 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back, superheo enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts, X-Men fans and comic book collectors! Today we revisit the X-Men Adventures monthly series which was the literary adaptation of the popular X-Men animated series of the 1990s.  

In my previous review, the X-Men encountered the Morlocks for the first time ever. Along the way, Storm’s ability to lead and handle her deepest fear got tested. Wolverine, meanwhile, struggled as he recovered from his hard battle with Sabretooth.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at X-Men Adventures #6, published by Marvel Comics in 1993 with a story written by Ralph Macchio and drawn by Andrew Wildman.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins in the Arctic region. Wolverine travels by himself having left his team as he could not handle being near his teammates Scott/Cyclops and Jean Grey knowing they have feelings for each other. He also feelings for her.

Wolverine keeps on traveling completely unaware that he is being watched from a distance by his fierce rival Sabretooth. As the clawed X-Men member moves over a bridge made of ice with explosives hidden underneath, Sabretooth detonates by remote control causing a huge explosion…

Quality

A different kind of Wolverine awaits readers here.

Let me start with the cover art. I can say clearly that those who wanted to see Wolverine and Sabretooth fight each other even more will get exactly what they want in this comic book. The conflict between the two is the highlight superhero spectacle and it works excellently as a pay-off to all the build-up that led to it.

More on the story itself, the script was crafted to heavily emphasize Wolverine’s personality when he is not on duty with his team. You will see a more human side of him when he starts interacting with a group of people (non-mutants) who have been living in the Arctic zone where they catch fish and ride boats for a living. I can say that the dialogue here is pretty rich especially when intense character development on Wolverine happens.

With regards to the Wolverine-Sabretooth rivalry, you definitely will get a lot more interactions and new action actions between them compared to what happened in issue #4. Spectacle aside, the stakes are even higher as the Arctic people got involved which creatively adds more depth on the development of both mutants.

Along the way, X-Men members Gambit, Storm and Jubilee head off to the island state of Genosha. As far as Gambit is concerned, Genosha welcomes mutants with open arms. For Charles Xavier, he sees a perfect opportunity for their team to visit and investigate it. This, of course, leads to the events of issue #7.

Conclusion

The X-Men talk about Wolverine’s absence and Genosha.

X-Men Adventures #6 (1993) will surely delight fans of Wolverine as well as his rivalry with Sabretooth. Be aware that the Wolverine tale is the main story while the X-Men tale serves mainly as a build-up for the debut of Genosha in the X-Men animated series and in this adaptive comic book series. I had fun reading this and there definitely is a lot of depth in both story and the way the characters were dramatized.

Overall, X-Men Adventures #6 (1993) is recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.

A Look Back at X-Men Adventures #5 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back, superheo enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts, X-Men fans and comic book collectors! Today we revisit the X-Men Adventures monthly series which was the literary adaptation of the popular X-Men animated series of the 1990s.  

In my previous retro review, the encounter with Magneto ended without any resolution. Back at X-Men headquarters, Sabretooth freed himself and got into a fight with Wolverine which symbolically highlighted tensions from their past encounters.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at X-Men Adventures #5, published by Marvel Comics in 1993 with a story written by Ralph Macchio and drawn by Andrew Wildman.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins inside the Danger Room where X-Men members Storm, Rogue, Gambit and Jubilee are tested for combat and skills development under the tight watch of Professor X. While Xavier is aware that while a real-life threat would cause his team to perfect their reflexes and counterattack strategies, it is the leadership of Storm that concerns him the most.

Just as the amount of danger rises, Xavier decides to raise the stakes of the exercise by drawing upon the deepest fears within Storm. Suddenly the ceiling moves down and the walls start closing in on the X-Men. This causes Storm to lose focus as painful memories from her childhood pertaining to claustrophobia suddenly entered her head. The exercise ended on a negative note and Storm tells Professor X that she cannot lead the X-Men as she believes that her claustrophobia will only put others at risk.

Within Xavier’s mansion, the still recovering Wolverine practices martial arts moves. Standing nearby is Jean Grey who starts talking sense into him. Wolverine then notices something in the way Jean looks at him…  

Quality

Cyclops and Jean Grey cornered by the Morlocks led by Callisto.

As the cover of this comic book shows, the main feature of the story is the X-Men’s encounter with the Morlocks (first appearance in Uncanny X-Men #169 published in 1983), a group of mutants living underneath the city of New York. Other than being a force of opposition, the Morlocks – led by Callisto – is itself a society composed of outcast mutants who could not really live among humans in normal society not only because of their mutations but also because of their collective look of deformity.

Picking up from the previous issue, the plot moved smoothly starting with a clear focus on Storm and her potential to lead the X-Men followed by the short but intriguing scene between Jean Grey and Wolverine. When the narrative shifted on New York City and the start of the conflict with the Morlocks, the story noticeably turned dark with its tone as the underground mutants become more prominent.

Other than the expected good-versus-evil emphasis of the plot, this comic book sheds light on the social ladder of America with the X-Men symbolizing the normal people and the Morlocks as the misfits. Symbolically speaking, the X-Men are bound to their code of no killing and their search for mutants that their leader Professor X could help, while the Morlocks prefer to be independent believing that isolation best serves their interests. Both the X-Men and the Morlocks have their respective approach on honor which is symbolized further when Storm and Callisto engage in close combat (note: this was the X-Men animated series’ adaptation of their fight as told in 1983’s Uncanny X-Men #170). I should also state that the portrayal of Cyclops and Jean Grey a very vulnerable figures in this story is pretty engaging.

To put things in perspective, the script of this comic book showed that the superhero spectacle is finely balanced with the strong dialogue and dramatization of the X-Men-Morlocks conflict.

Conclusion

The X-Men during the Danger Room session.

X-Men Adventures #5 (1993) is not only a very engaging read on its own, it is also one fine adaptation of the X-Men animated series episode “Captive Hearts” which I first saw on local TV way back in 1993.

Overall, X-Men Adventures #5 (1993) is recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.

A Look Back at X-Men Adventures #4 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back, superheo enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts, X-Men fans and comic book collectors! Today we revisit the X-Men Adventures monthly series which was the literary adaptation of the popular X-Men animated series of the 1990s.  

In my previous retro review, the X-Men encountered Magneto for the first time and things turned out for the worse for Charles Xavier’s team.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at X-Men Adventures #4, published by Marvel Comics in 1993 with a story written by Ralph Macchio and drawn by Andrew Wildman.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins in a ruined place where Magneto floats in the air and below him are Cyclops, Storm and Rogue who are down and looked knocked out. It turns out Rogue is still conscious and as Magneto remains unaware of her state, she makes her moves to get Storm and Cyclops back up.

Knowing the risk of absorbing another mutant’s power by touching, Rogue executes CPR to revive Cyclops. Just moments after Cyclops gets revived, powerful beams of laser suddenly come out of Rogue’s eyes. As soon as the problem eased, Rogue then flies off towards Magneto in a mad attempt to tackle him…

Quality

The encounter between Wolverine and Sabretooth is a must-read!

To get straight to the point here, this comic book tells two succeeding events starting with the encounter between Magneto and the X-Men. In reflecting Magneto’s first appearance in the animated series, this adaptation emphasizes the first time the X-Men encountered the master of magnetism but with the contemporary character designs and visual aesthetics of the era. On face value, the encounter here looks inspired by the X-Men Blue Team’s encounter with Magneto in 1991’s X-Men #1 but in reality this one was designed in accordance to the animated series creators’ way of establishing the start of the X-Men-Magneto rivalry. There is a good amount of superhero spectacle as Storm, Rogue, Cyclops and Charles Xavier each take turns on bringing down Magneto in their own unique methods. Of course, these developments helped emphasize how powerful Magneto really is.

The other half of this comic book tale focuses more on the presence of Sabretooth as a captive of the X-Men at their headquarters, as well as the eventual rivalry between him and Wolverine. It is during the heat of Wolverine’s encounter with Sabretooth that the dialogue became very rich and engaging to read as elements of their past together got raised, and Sabretooth’s observations on how the X-Men handled things became philosophical. I also enjoyed how the philosophical writing continued within Charles Xavier’s dialogue as he attempts to nullify the rage between Wolverine and Sabretooth.

As with his past works, the art here drawn by Andrew Wildman is very good and he even pushed the limits of on-page superhero violence during two key moments of the physical struggle between Wolverine and Sabretooth (which resulted in altered colors to avoid graphic violence).  

Conclusion

The encounter between Magneto and the X-Men was pretty engaging to read.

X-Men Adventures #4 (1993) is a solid read from start to finish. By the time I reached the final page, the comic book clearly marked the beginning of the rivalry between the X-Men and Magneto (in accordance to what was set up in the animated series). This comic book emphasized the rivalry further with the clever use of dialogue and visuals (complete with the strategic use of panels on the final pages), so much so there was this genuine feel of the start of a new age.

Overall, X-Men Adventures #4 (1993) is highly recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.