Three X-Men comics were in stores last week on September 9th: Marauders #12, X-Factor #3, and X-Force #12. In this column, we recap them all. It's pretty simple, really.
"Why do you bother writing this column?" – a commenter last week
Well, rude commenter, for a few reasons. First of all, because I can, I earned it, after a decade of toiling in the miserable, underpaid, and thankless field of comics "journalism" and punditry. If I feel like keeping an ongoing X-Men column going even though I'm otherwise writing mostly about pro wrestling, then I'm going to. And anyone would be happy to run it.
As to why I feel like doing it, though I don't see anything to gain for myself in continue to repeat the same messages about how to fix this dumb industry that no one listened to for ten years, I still might have something I really want to say about this garbage dump of a business on occasion. And dammit, I still love my X-Men. I love wrestling and comics in the same way – as ongoing soap operas with punching. I don't really care about the art or the message or the craft. I just care about the story. As long as Marvel keeps publishing them, I'll keep reading them. I've been through much darker times of X-Men reading, after all. Like Victor Gischler's run.
So I keep this column open. I think of it a lot like Wolverine having two dicks, one for f**cking and one for making love. Sure, most of the time, he's interested in making love to Jean Grey, but occasionally he wants to dip his penis into Cyclops' butthole. And who are you to tell him he can't, bub?
Sworn to sell comics for Marvel executives who feared and hated the fact that Fox owned their movie rights, The Uncanny X-Men suffered great indignities. Still, thanks to a corporate merger, a line-wide relaunch, and Jonathan Hickman's giant ego, the X-Men can finally get back to doing what they do best: being objectively the best franchise in all of comics.
(W) Ben Percy (A) Oscar Bazaldua (CA) Dustin Weaver
THE CEREBRO SWORD! After taking on the Flower Cartel, Logan has brought back valuable intel to the mutant CIA. The non-treaty nation of Russia is working to undermine Krakoa – and may be aligned with Xeno. Beast wants Colossus on their side as the first drumbeats of war begin to sound.
In Shops: Sep 09, 2020
X-Force #12 Recap
Picking up where things left off the last issue, a Cerebro-sword-wielding Mikhail Rasputin stands over the nearly-dead body of Quentin Quire. He drags the body back to a castle, presumably because Mikhail is a necrophiliac.
Back on Krakoa, Beast wakes up Sage and gives her a tree hat so that she can get on her computer and investigate the disappearance of the Cerebro sword (dude, just look back like two pages). Sage checks out surveillance footage of the gates and finds what appears to be a message left by Quentin, which reads, simply, "Mikhail."
Meanwhile, at Xeno headquarters, Xeno Commander has come up with a new scheme to stop GI Joe… I mean, the mutants. He cuts off the arm of his meathead bodyguard, Finnegan, and grafts a new, uglier arm on instead. Mikhail joins the meeting unexpectedly.
On Krakoa, Omega Red is hunting a Krakoan moose when Beast and Black Tom interrupt his meal. They accuse him of collaborating with Mikhail Rasputin. Speaking of Mikhail, Finnegan tries to attack him, but Mikail turns him to stone and smashes him. He tells Xeno Commander that he needs to work together with mutants against Krakoa.
In the Savage Land, Colossus is chilling with his girl Kayla when Beast, Wolverine, and Domino arrive and also accuse Pete of collaborating with his brother. Kayla, who is apparently a waterbender, puts up a fight, but Colossus agrees to go with them in handcuffs. When they get through the portal, all of the X-Men are waiting to watch.
Now we see an interlude from Beast's diary. Beast thinks Xavier is naive to trust everyone on Krakoa (true), plus he thinks the increase in cameras and surveillance in the world have made it a better place (no), so he has decided to gather up all mutants with Russian ties (no!) and detain them and to "parade" them in front of everyone else (Jesus Christ, Beast). "A little feat and paranoia keep people safe," he says. Sounds about right on the money with something Beast would do.
Wolverine flips out. He punches Beast and chases everyone away.
Domino apologizes to Colossus. At Xeno headquarters, Mikhail gives Xeno Commander the Cerebro sword so he can figure out how to get all the data off it, which would be all the data of Krakoa at the time of Xavier's assassination in X-Force #1. He also gives him the corpse of Quentin Quire to steal the DNA from. On Krakoa, Wolverine brings Jean Grey to a waterfall so he can make sweet love to her with one of his dicks, but before that, they stop at the Russian internment camp so she can read Colossus's mind and figure out the truth. A prose page from The Chronicler at the end of the book tells the story of the scene in the Savage Land from earlier in the book, except this time, instead of agreeing to go with Beast, Colossus beats him to a pulp, which would have been more satisfying both for Colossus and the readers. That part is crossed out.
This issue leads directly into X of Swords, as there won't be another issue of X-Force before that crossover begins. There's a lot of things I like here, most notably the excellent characterization of Beast. Beast has been a complete dick for years, but most comics are afraid to depict him as full-blown evil. Not X-Force. And I appreciate that. This was a fantastic comic for Beast haters.
What would have made it better would have been if it was Cyclops that got to punch him in the gut. Remember, Wolverine was right there with Beast being a hypocritical, sanctimonious jackass about Cyclops during the Schism. But I won't let the failure to attain perfection prevent me from enjoying a good beating on Beast. Hopefully, this is only the beginning of what's to come for that furry blue bastard.
Read more X-ual Healing here:
This post is part of a multi-part series: X-ual Healing X-Men Recaps for the Week of September 9th, 2020.
- Marauders #12 May Be Trying to Tell Us Something About Kate Pryde [XH]
- A Familiar Face Has Taken up Livestreaming in X-Factor #3 [XH]
- Beast Finally Gets What He Deserves in X-Force #12 [XH]