Friday, November 1, 2013

X-Men: Battle of the Atom #2

What a delightful little crossover. If you can forget for a moment just how much all these $3.99 titles have cost, this is a great throwback to the X-crossovers of the past decades. No one does time-travel better than the X-Men, and no one does crossovers better either.

When I last updated you all on this one, we only had a crew of X-Men from the future, a team in the present, and the original five X-Men from the past. In the course of the story, we get a whole different team of future X-Men, and a glimpse of the possible future that warped some of the characters so badly. (Special Agent Dazzler is sure important for a character that just stands around bantering with Maria Hill.)

There are tons of nice character moments scattered through the latter half of the crossover, but the best moments seem to belong to Iceman. I’m reading this series with my 8-year-old daughter, and man, she LOVES Iceman. Everything he says, she laughs. When Iceman and Beast travel with Magik to the future? She could barely concentrate on any other aspect of the story. “Dad, I just want to see what happens to Iceman and Beast.” I love it. I’ve never been prouder.

As they often do, there are a few remnants of the time-traveling groups sticking around the regular Marvel U. We might have a new Brotherhood of Mutants. I think there is a new student at the Jean Grey School. But best of all, the original X-Men and a VERY important member of the school staff are switching teams.
My number one complaint about the post-AVX X-universe is that not enough characters are siding with Cyclops. Wolverine is a crazy murderer too, and his moral superiority is absolutely crazy. So seeing SIX characters join up with Cyclops evens the odds a whole lot. My interest in Uncanny X-Men just shot up a ton.

The status quo going forward is going to be fascinating. Kinder, gentler, pretending Wolverine? Smug, possibly winning Cyclops? And the return of Nightcrawler?

Guys, the X-books are where it’s at. You can skip the Avengers these days, you want to be reading X-Men. GOOD

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