Two years ago- Mutant hate monger William Striker wanders into a church and discovers a sign from God.
Present- The students at Xavier’s school for the gifted wake to find more than ¾ of the student body de-powered and made human. Some are happy others are not. Wither thinking he’s now human grabs the arm of Wallflower who he’s had a crush on since they met only to find his power still active and her arm all but destroyed from his touch. They rush her to the infirmary while Wither is left traumatized by his mistake. Emma Frost places most of the Student body to sleep and contacts the senior staff to decide what the next move is. Wolverine contacts X-23 and tells her to get back to the school.
Two weeks from now- Jay Guthrie shows up at the front step of the school, wings chopped off covered in blood.
Cover-Very striking and very stunning cover art by Billy Tan. A dark background with our staring cast the light source, the lightning from Asian superhero Surge. Easily one of the most iconic covers of the 2000’s
Dynamic Duo- Here marks the beginning of my love affair with Craig Kyle and Chris Yost, two of the best writers to come out of comics past ten years. Sure Morrison, Geon’s and Bendis are bigger names but these guys have a knack for continuity and a respect for established canon that goes beyond all those named.
Story- This issue serves to tie up all the loose ends of the established story thus far in the series in light of mutant depowerment globally. It starts to establish the new status quo as mutants return to the minority population on earth. The fallout is expected with some happy, others not, the reaction of the students to the new status quo really sells the issue and the intense trauma shared by Wither and Wallflower. Wither has been in love with this girl from day one and here he tries to be affectionate thinking he no longer has his powers only to realize after touching her he in fact still has his powers and has now probably permanently scarred both, himself “psychologically” and her “physically”. Other loose ends are the exit of Dani Moonstar from the teaching staff since she’s now human and Elixir who also has a thing for Wallflower trying to heal her as Wither watches them from the shadows.
Art-I’ve always liked Mark Brooks art style, a rich cartoony aesthetic which surprisingly works wonders on more mature scenes like the ending.
M Day- I understand why marvel thought it necessary to thin the herd as it were with mutants since Grant Morrison initiated a global baby boom of the mutant population but New X-men suffered the most. This was essentially the “Hogwarts” of the superhero community and M-day robbed us of a wealth of untapped potential superheroes and a variety of quirky super powers cast aside for more popular ones. The status quo of the book will also see a radical shift, gone is the light heartedness of yesterday.
Black Superheroes– Sure the tale was fun but both Tag and Prodigy our most prominent black members of this team both no longer have any powers.
Action- Sorry guys no explosions, fistfights or action to speak of.