Current Reviews


New X-Men #151

Posted: Saturday, January 10, 2004
By: Shawn Hill

“Here Comes Tommorow, Part One of Four”

Writer: Grant Morrison
Artist: Marc Silvestri

Publisher: Marvel

Tom Skylark and a verbally challenged Sentinel explore the postmodern runis of Megamerica, carrying a special treasure and pursued by a multiplicity of blue demons. A gathering of familiar faces isn’t enough to prevent the plans of a perverse genius. Meanwhile, 150 years ago, two mourners visit a grave.

Didn’t we already have the Age of Apocalypse? Morrison’s version of a mutant future history reads an awful lot like that crossover event. Mad, evil Beast performing genetic experiments? Check. A gathering of oddly familiar heroes, on a hopeless quest to storm a dangerous citadel? Check and check.

So while the plot in this first installment is far from fresh, the subtle details Morrison chooses to embellish scifi his vision are more rewarding. There are a lot of little nuggets for fans of his run, especially regarding the characters he himself introduced. E.V.A. has gained a human form (and, good news for some, lost her former bond-mate Fantomex), and admits to being a sort of late generation sentinel. Beak, in a solid action sequence, seems to have finally outgrown his adolescent awkwardness (and retained his fondness for his weapon of choice), to become the mutant Carter Hall.

Even Cassandra Nova has changed fundamentally, now carrying on Xavier’s legacy after his death. She’s yet another of Morrison’s effortlessly inserted gray areas, a rehabilitated mass murderer, now fighting (against her “programming”) to save the mutants she meant to destroy. Much like E.V.A., actually, and even the reconfigured, decrepit old-school sentinel with the charming vocal tic.

Also undeniably cool are the “Crawlers” themselves, hybrid mutants that look like Kurt, fire Cyclops’ eye beams, and multiply like Jamie Madroxx.

But Bad Beast is a cliché, and Skylark (at least this issue) is a complete cipher. Much more emotionally powerful is the flashback coda, where Emma and Scott ponder the mystery that was Jean. It’s a complete echo of her Byrne/Claremont funeral, but even Byrne didn’t draw ultimate Bond-babes like Silvestri’s chic and sexy take on Emma. His Image-style art makes a welcome return, and even if the story is mediocre, at least we know from the cover that no matter what age, Wolverine will always have a hot ass!

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