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(What's Up With?) Uncanny X-Men (2013) #2 (A Review)

By Andy Frisk
March 4, 2013 - 22:10

There was a time when the X-Men were prized guest stars in other Marvel Comics books like The Avengers, The Punisher, and the like. Times have definitely changed though. Now when Captain America, Iron Man, Hawkeye, The Hulk, and pretty much any other Avenger shows up in a non-Avenger Marvel Comics comic book, it's a pretty big (sales push) deal, as the Avengers are beating Marvel's merry mutants out pretty handily in the popularity department. Could it be that the X-Men are now the Marvel underdogs? I for one hope so...

...for it was when The Uncanny X-Men, as a title, was faltering in the early to mid 1970s that chances were taken with the title. An all new cast was introduced and Chris Claremont was brought on. The rest, as they say, is history. Now, powerhouse Marvel Master Scribe Brian Michael Bendis is at the helm of the flagship X book at Marvel Comics, and while two issues really can't serve as a measuring stick, Bendis isn't really doing anything to set the Uncanny world on fire like he is over in All New X-Men.

Bendis does begin to work his wonderful powers of characterization on the cast of Uncanny X-Men this issue though. We get a peek inside Emma Frost's head and the anguish she is enduring mentally over her betrayal at the hands of her former lover Scott Summers/Cyclops and her diminished mutant powers. We also get a peek into the new Charles Xavier School for Mutants. Yes, Cyclops and company are setting up another school for mutants that will most likely have a very different curriculum than Logan and Kitty's Jean Grey School does. Things seem to be settling down (and in) pretty well for Cyclops and company, until the traitor in their midst (you know who it is if you read last issue) unleashes the aforementioned Avengers upon them.

The kick in the butt that the X-titles needed though has yet to fully materialize. All New X-Men is currently trading on the time travels of the "original X-Men," and Uncanny is rehashing the same old love story anguish and persecution theme that the X-Men, as a franchise, have traded on for decades. While the persecution metaphor is truly a noble one and something that should always be present in the X-books, with the big name heroes like Captain America and his allies trying to integrate their team with mutants, Cyclops seems a little self deluded. Good thing the Sentinels are always available as a ready made fill in for persecutor...

While I was totally and utterly thrilled to see Bendis take over the X-franchise at Marvel, as it were, I've yet to be fulfilled by it. I guess I need to be more patient though and that's the problem with a huge name taking over your favorite superheroes' book. One can't help but hope for a quick jump in quality, when it takes time to build up to a legendary run. Like the persecuted minorities that the X-Men represent...they are often underdogs in the big fights. These underdogs have won it all before though and I suspect will again under Bendis.

Last Updated: August 31, 2023 - 08:12

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