After the events of Uncanny X-force #14 a part of Montana has become its own habitat; Tabula Rasa; created by Archangel after he became Apocalypse’s successor. Present day the locals have entered Tabula Rasa to explore and get attacked by locale wildlife.
On Utopia Cyclops assembled the “extinction squad”, they are joined by Psylocke who replaces Emma Frost as team telepath whose recovering after the events of Uncanny X-men #1. Cyclops contacts Captain America to let him know his team will deal with the Tabula Rasa situation. The team teleport in via Magik, who also saves the citizens while Storm, Cyclops, Colossus, Magneto, Hope, Namor and Danger figure out how to deal with the creatures. They then split into teams of two to search the area. Cyclops and Storm get separated and Cyclops is knocked unconscious and taken away. Magik and Colossus are entranced by strange flowers. Namor and Hope are attacked underwater. Magneto and Psylocke discuss the events which lead to Tabula Rasa’s creation and stumble onto the local civilization and read the hieroglyph before being attacked by what the natives call the old god.
Secrets- Psylocke….you sly and clever girl; Central to this plot is British born telepath Elizabeth Braddock who unknown to Cyclops has been a member of Wolverine’s Uncanny X-force kill squad since his version was disbanded. She brings Tabula Rasa to Cyclops attention because, well, his team is the only one suited to deal with the mess that wolverine’s team has made, or more specifically she’s made. She confides with the only person on the team with possibly even more secrets than she does, Magneto. Dangerous is the best word to describe the secrets mounting in Cyclops camp. It also adds credence to Wolverine coming clean to his teaching staff in Wolverine and the X-men #4, secrets can destroy a team from within.
Art- Love him or hate him but when Greg Land doesn’t blatantly reuse art in an issue the book looks damn good. This was one of the best Greg Land issues I’ve had in my hands in years, kudos!
Humor- Psylocke’s quip about being on many teams since Wolverine made it look so easy is a classic. It pokes fun at every character who magically appears in every high profile comic book on the rack with no plausible explanation. Tongue in cheek is best suited for these situations, good one Gillen.
Continuity- Love how the events of Uncanny X-force have impacted and lead to this story. Nice use of recent history guys.
Balance-This issue presents a reasonable personality difference between Cyclops and Storm as to why she’s his new second in command. While him and Wolverine grew close their personalities seemed to blend together, they became one mind on almost every situation before schism. Storm on the other hand is the antithesis of Cyclops they are always at odds. He’s brooding, she’s happy, he’s a general, she’s a mother, if things continue in this vein I look forward to much more from this dynamic duo.
Cover- Not very impressed by the bland cover which features Psylocke wrapped in battle embrace with a monster, not feeling it guys!
Loving the team, loving the chemistry, loving the art, loving the possibility! 4.5/5