Current Reviews


Astonishing X-Men #12

Posted: Friday, September 2, 2005
By: Ray Tate

Writer: Joss Whedon allegedly
Artist: John Cassaday, Laura Martin(c)
Publisher: Marvel

Here, are a few facts for you.

Fact one, I do not know X-Men continuity. See, you didn't need to twist my arm.

Fact two, I never bought the idea of The Uncanny X-Men being a metaphor for racial hatred except in the movie. Because....

Fact three, the only time I really liked the entirety of the X-Men as characters occurred when I was introduced to them in Origins of Marvel Comics, maybe it was Son of Origins, as they debuted under the fine, fun care of Jack Kirby and Stan "The Man" Lee. The X-Men were meant to curtail the potential for fear through their representation as positive mutant role models. There was no hatred for mutantkind.

Fact four, the Sentinels are mechanical bigots. They are programmed to hate and kill mutants much in the same way that Daleks were genetically programmed to hate and kill everything that's not a Dalek. Although I do not accept the idea of The Uncanny X-Men being a metaphor for racial hatred. There's no doubt about it. The Sentinels, to which Chris Claremont and Dave Cockrum introduced me, are bigots.

Fact five, Genosha was an island of mutants. I know this from Morrison's run of The X-Men. So, given that Sentinels are programmed at their very core to be bigots, why would a Sentinel feel guilt over murdering an island of mutants? That would be like a Klansman weeping over a volcano suddenly erupting in Harlem, yet this is the major plot twist Whedon d'jour wishes you accept.

Fact six, Charles Xavier is the supreme telepath on the planet earth, yet despite this ability, he cannot sense on a desolate island the presence of former X-Men foes who conveniently happen to be on that desolate island.

Fact seven, I'm really getting sick of unstoppable nanite-driven foes. Crush them, rend them limb from limb, and they just grow back better than ever. The best use for nanites was seen in Mystery Science Theater 3000: "Hello, Mike. What can we do you for?" The Danger Room fiasco doesn't alter my opinion one iota.

Fact eight, John Cassaday can sure draw purty, but it takes more than really beautiful artwork to blind one to a lame story authored by somebody can write better even when stricken by say a mutated strain of flu virus.

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