Monday, 10 September 2012

X-Men #109: Department Eh

X-Men #109 opens with the X-Men finally all back at that mansion, with Xavier, for the first time in over a (publication) year. And they say that the early Chris Claremont stories progress in real time.

It starts off fun. Kurt gets in trouble for teleporting indoors (presumably because of the smell)! Moira and Sean kiss! Storm keeps plants garden in the attic and waters them! Gratuitous Storm shower scene! Colossus is writing a letter to his parents! Kurt is trying to arrange a double-date for him and Colossus with some people called Amanda and Betsy! He wants to see Star Wars. But Peter is going on a picnic with Moira and Sean. Storm is coming to! Wolverine wants to tag along so he can stroke some pretty animals.1 Definitive confirmation that Xavier and Moira were an item.

There's some level of more serious stuff going on. It recognises the ending of the last issue was a little abrupt, as it goes in and inserts a bunch of things before they left through the stargate, including Lilandra trying and failing to assert authority as Empress, and Corsair asking Jean not to tell Scott about his paternity.

The dramatic core of this ought to be Jean telling her parents about becoming Phoenix, but we never actually see that, we're just told that it happens. Claremont is treating Jean more as a plot device than a character.

Anyway, it gets as far as page 11 without there being any punching at all, even Danger Room punching. But then Wolverine gets attacked by Canadians. Well, a Canadian, anyway. Weapon Alpha, a.k.a. James MacDonald Hudson, who knows him as Logan, and has been sent (following up from the threat we saw in Giant-Size #1) to retrieve Wolverine for Department H. They see him off, but he's gonna come back, with Alpha Flight. I especially like how Banshee calls him "Major Maple Leaf, or whatever ye call yourself".

I should probably mention that John Byrne is pencilling now. He took over from Dave Cockrum in #108.

1. I am, god help me, not making this up.

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