It’s the beginning of a new era for the X-Men. Cable is buried, but new mutants appear around the world. Beast leaves the team over Cyclops’ secret X-Force. Cyclops disbands X-Force only for Wolverine to secretly reform the team. Oh, and Hope may have the Phoenix Force. Or something.
This issue is a satisfying conclusion to a great X-Men epic. Hope’s eulogy for Cable is a fine tribute and a respectful homage to a character who’s played such a complex role in the X-Men’s lives for the last 20 years. She’s portrayed as a young woman of great power and importance. Her very presence has changed the course of history. But deep down, she’s still a vulnerable little girl. It will be interesting to see how other writers treat her and evolve her character.
Speaking of female characters, Wolverine kicks X-23 off the team and tells her to find her own path. She’ll be doing that in her own monthly series. Why am I not optimistic about her future? Maybe because she’s displayed no distinct personality in this crossover. Granted, all I know about her is, “een girl clone of Wolverine who used to be an under-aged hooker and has spikes in her feet.” There may be more to her than that, but that’s a hard hurdle to overcome. Then again, Cable used to be, “Terminator rip-off time traveling clone with impossibly large guns.” So she could always get better.
I also have to comment on Wolverine in this issue. For years, he was conflicted about his violent nature. He was a man at war with his animal nature. Now he seems comfortable with violence. He believes violence and death are necessary to the survival of the mutant race. It’s kind of sad seeing Logan like this. It’s like he’s given up trying to be a better man and accepted that he’ll always be a killer. I agree with Storm’s comments in the book: This may be the last time I spend time with him.
So Cyclops wants the X-Men to stand for a better tomorrow, while Wolverine and X-Force secretly do the dirty work. Hope promises salvation for the mutant race, yet danger may still be lurking. I liked this comic. I liked “Second Coming.” I highly recommend the 14-part story and the tie-in issues.
Except Hellbound. You don’t need that.
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