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Uncanny X-Men #15 (A coven of mutant women Spoilers)

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Postby Punchy » Thu Dec 12, 2013 2:47 pm

Holy fucking shit, the balls on Brian Michael Bendis. I can’t actually believe that he did what he did in this issue. He only went and introduced a Marvel Universe version of perhaps the worst character he ever created… Geldhoff. And no, that’s not a typo, you did read that right, 616 Geldhoff makes his debut here, and it’s actually not terrible. It looks like with Geldhoff and the mysterious bubble-head guy, Bendis is using his X-Men run to dust off a lot of old concepts and actually make it work. Jesus Christ, Geldhoff, this is mental.

Anyways, this issue isn’t really about Geldhoff, what it actually is, is a very fun ‘Girls Night’ with the various female Uncanny X-Men cast members, complete with excellent artwork from Kris Anka. The issue begins in the past, with Magik having one of her magic lessons with Doctor Strange, which was cool to see again, but the story really begins when Illyana heads back to the present, and is confronted by the Stepford Cuckoos and Tempus, who have realised that they have no clothes apart from the ones on their backs, and want to go shopping. They quickly rope Jean Grey into this (and cleverly, she is wearing the same shirt she stole off a clothesline in ‘Battle For The Atom’) and they want Magik to help them convince Emma Frost, because, somehow, she’s the nice one, which is hilarious. All of the dialogue in this issue was great, it felt like a realistic group of young women, rather than superheroes.

Everyone goes to wake up Emma (who sleeps in some strange positions, also very funny), and she grabs a massive duffel bag of money and doles it out. Kitty Pryde also tags along, and so Magik teleports everyone to London, where they, well, they go on a shopping spree, and generally get to feel like normal people for once. Things do get a bit tense after they’ve eaten some greasy burgers (come on X-Men, you go to the UK and you don’t have fish and chips? Kitty was in Excalibur for ages, she should know better!), as the issues between the Cuckoos and Jean rear their head, but that is soon put aside when sirens go past, calling everyone to a disturbance.

This problem is where the Inhumanity tie-in begins, as it’s one of those pesky Terrigenesis cocoons. The various psychics use their powers to disperse the crowd, and the X-Men investigate the cocoon, which soon hatches, and well, fucking Geldhoff is inside it. He’s from Latveria in this universe as well, although he has these weird, like, spikes coming out of his face. Geldhoff is understandably freaked out by what’s happening, and ironically, he’s not a big fan of Mutants. Kitty tries to calm him down, but it doesn’t work, and he blasts some weird, purple energy out of his face, which knocks everyone, including Geldhoff himself out. Soon after this, AIM show up and take Geldhoff away to experiment on him, as Doctor Rappaccini sees Terrigenesis as an important next step for AIM. The X-Men wake up, and basically start to confront what a post-Inhumanity world means for them and the Mutant race. Could this actually be a good thing for Mutants? Could people’s prejudice turn away from them and to this new dangerous minority? I doubt that, but it’s certainly and exciting complication for the X-Men.

This was a great issue, the first half, with the girl’s night out was just a lot of fun, and then, when it got more serious, a lot of cool ideas for the future are set up. Plus, Geldhoff! What the hell? Crazy.

Kris Anka provided the art for this issue, and wow, it was really good. He did a few pages on a previous issue, but this was the first time he’s done a whole one, and I really like his style, he reminded me a bit of a cross between Stuart Immonen and Olivier Coipel, but with plenty of elements unique to Anka. The facial expressions, always vital to a Bendis book, were spot on, and I think he’s a great choice for an issue that focused on the female characters.

Bendis’ X-Books just continue to be awesome, and it’s great to see Uncanny move away from it’s heavy focus on Cyclops for a bit, last issue was all about Benjamin, and now the ladies got the spotlight, hell, Cyclops only had 1 line this issue, and it was awesome, Bendis is now developing a real ensemble.
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Postby Grayson » Thu Dec 12, 2013 4:03 pm

Interestingly enough, Geldoff was already introduced and summarily killed off in Avengers: The Initiative. Guess Geldoff is just a common name or something, especially in the Marvel Universe.

Anyways the issue itself was another great Bendis issue, which still feels weird to say but his take on the X-Men is certainly refreshing. It was great to see Kitty Pryde working alongside Scott before the rest of the girls took her for their night out. Speaking of the night out itself, the interaction between the X-Women was a great change of pace. Since the beginning of this series, these girls have been on the run because the rest of the Marvel Universe has decided that it's ok to hunt and kill people simply for being mutants. Come to think of it, people in the Marvel Universe are super racist jerks! :smt013

Wow, I seem to have went a little off track there. The point that I was trying to make is that it was good to see these characters being allowed to be real people for a change, even if that did lead them into another dangerous situation.

My only minor complaint about this issue was the fact that it was a tie-in to Inhumanity. Even though I really enjoyed Infinity and the Inhumanity one-shot, there is so much going on right now in the world of the X-Men, it's getting a little crowded and the main stories are being pushed aside. Bendis handled it well and I realize that this is something that is effecting the entire Marvel Universe but sometimes I just want the main story to continue.

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