Today sees the publication of the final chapters of X Of Swords, with X-Men #15, Excalibur #15 and Destruction #1. With one final battle that turns into a very big battle indeed, with lots of surprises, new arrivals and a final that feels final but also opens up so many doors. I may have just said that, when talking about what this all means for the Captain Britain Corps and noting the appearance of Gwenpool and Doop. But it's true. And as ever, the greatest joy is in the details. We also get some surprises…
So we get the soap opera macros, where the biggest twists of plot all hinge on families and emotion rather than reasoning. With Teen Cable cut off in Otherworld calling for help, it's time for Cyclops to break the rules. We had previously seen what defeat would mean for Krakoa and Earth…
That was it. Which underlined Cyclops' words.
And the Summers family going to get their own and sort out all the other plot issues in the process.
And as they come into conflict with the Quiet Council…
…we get to see an internal Quiet Council document to get rid of the X-Men from just before the incorporation of Krakoa as a nation state was announced to the world. To deprioritise the X-Men. To stop using their name. The X-Men are no more.
It is worth pointing out that this is just what did happen to the X-Men within Marvel when Marvel Chair Ike Perlmutter fell out with Fox Studios, cancelled the Fantastic Four books and "deprioritised" the X-Men, removing them from toys, cartoons, games, statues, reducing the comic book budget and promotion of the line – something that Jonathan Hickman himself would partially confirm much later. And the Fans and the mutants just wouldn't stand for it. Hence Cyclops.
Jonathan Hickman is Cyclops, bringing back the X-Men, getting them to do what they were meant to do. Just in case you needed any more meta. And we are reminded what that will mean… as Genesis and Apocalypse continue their final X Of Swords battle.
A battle that grows and grows and grows. "Hold Fast" says Storm. "Never Surrender" says Apocalypse.
And Apocalypse gives the grandest of humblebrags while fighting his wife.
And the X-Men stand tall…
…even if Krakoa no longer does.
EXCALIBUR #15 XOS
(W) Tini Howard (A/CA) Mahmud Asrar
A game abandoned, but a great gamble remains.
A Tower answers. Rated T+ In Shops: Nov 25, 2020 SRP: $3.99
X-MEN #15 XOS
(W) Jonathan Hickman (A) Mahmud Asrar (CA) Leinil Francis Yu
A great division. Bitter victories. Bitterer hearts. Rated T+In Shops: Nov 25, 2020 SRP: $3.99
X OF SWORDS DESTRUCTION #1
(W) Jonathan Hickman, Tini Howard (A/CA) Pepe Larraz
The wheel of fortune turns. The unfortunate fall.
A sword against the darkness. Rated T+ In Shops: Nov 25, 2020 SRP: $4.99