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Feb 3

X-Men #5 annotations

Posted on Monday, February 3, 2020 by Paul in Annotations

As always, this post contains spoilers, and page numbers go by the digital edition.

COVER / PAGE 1. Storm and Armor in generic action.

PAGE 2. A flash forward to Cyclops realising at the end of the issue that his plan has gone wrong.

PAGES 3-4. Credits. This is “Into the Vault” by Jonathan Hickman and RB Silva. The recap picks up on the Serafina storyline from issue #1.

PAGES 5-9. In Ecuador, Wolverine pursues Serafina, but she mind-controls some locals to delay him, and slips back into the Vault.

The Children of the Vault. We covered this in issue #1, but the Children of the Vault (and Serafina in particular) are a community who were locked into a vault where time ran more quickly, the idea being that they would emerge with vastly advanced technology developed over thousands of years. They were supposed to emerge after an apocalypse and become the new rulers of Earth, but came out early and decided to conquer the world anyway, as its destined inheritors . This makes them “post-human” villains, of the sort that Powers of X presented as very important to Hickman’s mythos.

The original Vault was in Chile, but in X-Men vol 2 #193 they retreated to a new Vault in Ecuador, which is the one seen here – located in the abandoned Sentinel factory used by Cassandra Nova in New X-Men #114. The Children of the Vault appeared later in another Mike Carey story, so apparently at that time their new Vault lacked the time-dilation effect (or they’re incredibly long lived, which is definitely possible). By the time of this story, it’s evidently back in effect.

Serafina still has the negative-colour effect that we saw in issue #1. She didn’t have that in her previous appearances, and the reason for it has yet to be revealed. It may simply be a sign of her further development since the last time we saw her.

PAGES 10-11. Serafina enters the Vault.

Not exactly data pages, but the first of several pages in this issue showing people surrounded by computer imagery and text as they enter the vault. We’ll come back to this in a later scene, because it’s important.

PAGES 12-14. The X-Men brief Darwin, Synch and X-23 on their mission to the Vault.

The mission team get the new version of generic X-Men outfits (though Synch’s costume is in the red and yellow colours of his old team, Generation X).

The World. As the X-Men point out, the Vault was basically the same concept as the World, from Grant Morrison’s New X-Men run, where advanced humans like Fantomex were created by allowing evolution to run at high speed. You wonder if there’s some reason for bringing the World up, as it doesn’t otherwise figure into the story, and you wouldn’t normally go out of your way to make a concept seem less distinctive. At any rate, the difference between the two is indeed one of emphasis: the World is about evolution, the Vault about posthumanity.

Posthumanity. Xavier describes the Children of the Vault as “the single greatest existential threat to mutantdom.” This is surely based on what he’s learned from Moira, since based purely on their track record, the Children of the Vault are mid-ranking villains at best. Interestingly, none of the senior X-Men present query this.

Darwin. One of the “X-Men” who were retconned into history by X-Men: Deadly Genesis, and who got trapped on Krakoa while trying to rescue the real X-Men. He finally emerged from suspended animation in that story to join the team for real, but didn’t last much beyond the Ed Brubaker run. His last major appearance was in Peter David’s X-Factor in 2013, in which he appeared to have taken on some extra mystical abilities as a harbinger of death. From the look of it, that’s finally worn off.

Darwin’s mutant power is basically to adapt so as to survive anything – he’s got little in the way of offence but he’s virtually unkillable. That’s why he and the power-copying Synch have been selected for this unusual job – it’s assumed that somehow or other, Darwin’s powers will let them cross the time dilation barrier and survive.

Synch. His return from the dead has been mentioned before, but this is the first time we’ve seen him at any length. There’s more about him on the data page that follows.

X-23. Since this issue ties up Laura in a subplot, presumably we’re after Fallen Angels #6. Laura has been selected on the basis that her healing powers will let her survive the time dilation barrier – in other words, she’ll be torn apart but they figure she’ll get back up.

For the first time in quite a while, X-23 identifies herself as “Wolverine”. She was using that identity during the period when the real Wolverine was believed dead, but seemed to have dropped it when he returned and her title was re-named X-23. Many people thought this was a retrograde step (not so much that she gave up the “Wolverine” name but that she went back to “X-23”). Logan expressly endorses her using the codename.

Resurrection. In theory, if all goes smoothly, the trio are meant to sneak into the Vault, get the information, and engineer the re-opening of the Vault so that they can get out. Even if that takes ages inside the Vault, it should be very little time in the outside world. But if they don’t come out… well, these are very long-lived characters, and the X-Men won’t be able to verify that they’re dead, so they won’t be able to resurrect them.

Or rather, as previous data pages have explained, they wouldn’t be willing to resurrect them, because it would risk having multiples of the same character wandering around. And nobody on Krakoa really wants to be confronted too directly with the implications of that.

Wolverine. He says he’d go on this mission “but I’ve got something pressing that can’t wait.” He’s not likely to be making excuses, so we should probably assume that’s a reference to something.

PAGE 15. A data page on the resurrection of Synch. The general thrust is that Synch was one of the first mutants to be resurrected, and that the time gap (from his perspective) was traumatic. Synch was killed in Generation X #70 back in 2000; he was prioritised for resurrection because he could be a fallback member of the Five. The solution to his trauma was to bring back his teammate Skin (who died in Uncanny X-Men #423 in 2003). This apparently explains the somewhat random selection of resurrected mutants on Krakoa: some of them are there because of what they bring to the table, others are there to help mitigate the culture shock for their contemporaries.

Nonetheless, despite Synch’s genial and relaxed demeanour, we’re being told very clearly that he’s not entirely well, and that time distortion had something to do with it. So sending him into the Vault to undergo yet further time dislocation seems like an undesirable move.

We’re also told that Synch came back better than before, and that the Five are not accurately re-creating mutants, but fixing their minor imperfections in the bargain. He’s not much different, physically. But he’s different.

PAGES 16-17. The Vault computer continues to address Serafina.

Broadly speaking, the computer seems to be saying that Serafina was sent out of the Vault on a reconnaissance mission along with Sangre, Perro, Aguja and Fuego (all established members of the Children of the Vault). Only Serafina survived. Based on her report, the computer decides that more development is needed before the Children will be ready to take on the humans and mutants, and conquer the world. It then sets about upgrading Serafina and “restoring” the four deceased mutants.

There are three main things that you’re meant to pick up on here. One is pretty obvious: the Children of the Vault are a direct parallel with the X-Men (a theme that came up a lot in House of X). Serafina’s mission was a mirror of Synch, Darwin and X-23’s. And her dead teammates are apparently being restored from back-up just like the mutants.

The second is that this computer is talking in the same font as the computer whose small print adorns the data pages. That surely can’t be coincidence.

The third – and the one most likely to be missed – is that the Children of the Vault now strongly resemble the Children of Tomorrow, from Hickman’s Ultimate Comics Ultimates (sic). The Children of Tomorrow were the same basic idea: a post-human community which developed within a time bubble (this time, under the direction of the Maker – and Xavier’s new resemblance to the Maker has not gone unnoticed by readers). The computer face which appears before Serafina is very similar to the computer from the City of Children of Tomorrow. The computer also lists job titles for the Children of the Vault. This parallels the Children of Tomorrow, who had no names, only job titles. In particular, “Judge”, “Builder”, “Sword”, “Knife” and “Teacher” were Children of Tomorrow, and their names appear again here.

The Children of Tomorrow were very, very bad news indeed. Hickman’s run was at the tail end of the Ultimate imprint, when you could smash things up without worrying too much about the consequences, and so their 12-issue storyline was apocalyptic from start to finish, with the City spreading over most of Europe.

PAGES 18-22. The X-Men cause a distraction so that their team can get into the Vault.

Pretty self-explanatory. Note that the X-Men realise that it’s unusual for Serafina to be alone but – despite the circumstances in which they found her, as a prisoner of Orchis – they don’t think to wonder what happened to her companions.

PAGES 23-24. The Vault computer detects the invaders immediately and begins a response.


PAGE 25. Three months later, there’s no word from the team…

The best guess is that they’ve been gone for centuries, within the time bubble. It’s all gone horribly wrong.

PAGE 26. Trailer page. The Krakoan text reads NEXT: SOMETHING OWED.

Bring on the comments

  1. YLu says:

    Didn’t Hickman not end up seeing his full plans for the Ultimate universe through, leaving the titles mid-way?

    I wonder if he’s using the X-titles as a chance for a do-over or to use some of the ideas he never had a chance to implement.

    And I’m fully willing to believe the similarity of the fonts doesn’t mean anything. Or at least anything beyond Hickman being fond of maintain a consistent, noticeable aesthetic.

  2. James Day says:

    I’m not too sure I’m really getting into this series, which is a shame because i did quite like House/Powers of X. I guess it might be the one and done nature it’s going for at the moment. I can’t help but feel I’m missing a load of story in between, but judging from your recaps of the other books that isn’t totally the case. So i just feel it is at the moment Hickman just jumping at any random idea he feels cool and there is just no cohesion to it.

    As for this issue…it did feel slight. Half of it felt like computer text on a background and the other half felt like more set up for maybe a storyline that might come down the line…but not here. Which always feels a bit meh.

  3. Evilgus says:

    This issue really came together for me. I enjoyed the paralleling of the Krakoan nation with the Children of the Vault. I liked the creative rationale of teaming up Darwin, Synch and Wolverine. And finally, the art. The art! Hooray for Silva, what a relief. Such an improvement over Francis Yu’s stiff, sketchy figures. Improved my enjoyment a hundred fold.

  4. ASV says:

    I sort of assumed the reverse black and white scheme was just something that Hickman likes, ala that white and black character from his incursions in Avengers. One of the frustrating things with him is that he drops in so many idiosyncratic things that you figure can’t be coincidences, but then he’s got so many tics that they almost most be. Like, Xavier and the Maker are just two of many weird helmet guys that Hickman has written.

  5. Drew says:

    “We’re also told that Synch came back better than before, and that the Five are not accurately re-creating mutants, but fixing their minor imperfections in the bargain.”

    Nice to know that if you had an unsightly mole on your thigh, or one boob slightly smaller than the other, the Five have got your back. I’ll bet the first thing Logan did after his resurrection was find Elixir. “Hey, thanks for giving me, uh, a little more to work with, bub. Your next bar tab’s on me.”

  6. Si says:

    What would happen if Synch and Hope tried to copy eachother’s powers? Would they pop? Would they merge into a single being, possibly named Honch?

  7. SanityOrMadness says:

    Treating it like it was a serious question ( :p ), not very much – Hope would get some rainbow effects, and if their powers were slightly different (range, duration, strength of copied powers relative to the original, number of powersets they could hold simultaneously) they would be able to use the other’s attributes. But they’re not parasitic or unable to *avoid* copying, IIRC.

    Better question is if they mimicked Rogue and tried using her powers on her. Since Rogue *is* parasitic, things might get weird if they tried to drain each other…

  8. Luis Dantas says:

    I for one found X-23 taking Wolverine’s name very regressive. This is a woman attempting to develop a more grounded sense of identity. It does not really make sense for her to deliberately emphasize her situation of that time as one more of about a half dozen “almost-Wolverines”. Her own clone had more of a sense of identity than her has to this day.

  9. Joseph S says:

    Maybe it’s just because his names Synch, but the revelation of that data page has me thinking about syncing my phone backup to a new device. It’s the same phone, but it’s not, but it is, but it’s better… (kind of just hoping for a really mundane inspiration for Hickman’s whole plan).

    I really enjoyed the art in this issue, especially in the Vault. Works beautifully on digital.

    Despite having so many issues in a relatively short period, this is feeling like a slow burn, especially since each issue is disjointed. Hickman keeps putting more and more balls in the air. What the heck is even going on with the second island that merged with Krakoa? Has that been mentioned anywhere? But at least this issue picked up on Serafina who disappeared in X-men #1

    While I agree it was a bit slight, my main complain is with the bookend of Cyclop’s reaction. As far as I can tell, wasn’t jettisoning the trio for centuries /precisely/ the plan? Didn’t they specifically acknowledge that they might very well not get out at all? I understand he cares about his soldiers and all, but it just doesn’t seem like he plan’s gone off the rails.

  10. Luis Dantas says:

    Far as they know or can expect, the plan has indeed gone off the rails, because the time dilation effect of the Vault implies that the trio has either died or experienced centuries of events from their perspective since they entered it, probably as prisoners.

    Either outcome is very much a serious failure for Cyclops and, presumably, Xavier. It is interesting that Xavier does not show much concern at all, despite claiming that the Vault is the most serious threat to their plan and having as much reason as Scott to worry about the well-being of their three agents. Xavier has historically been far less cold-blooded than this.

  11. CJ says:

    Surely nitpicky, but you refer to the Children (Sangre, Fuego, etc.) as “mutants”, but aren’t they more like super-advanced cyborgs?

    Maybe it’s solely due to the presence of Synch (being black and from St. Louis, I identified with him in the 1990s), but I loved this issue, keeping in mind I never read Hickman’s Ultimate Comics run.

    It addressed post-humanity themes from HoXPoX, the data page font did make The Vault seem like an anti-Krakoa, the creepy possibility of multiple resurrection is brought up again.

    In fact, after seeing Synch and Skin, I reread all of Generation X and realized that 1) large chunks of it were not as great as I remember, and 2) Synch’s generic goodness, which probably led to the choice to kill him in #70, is probably the same reason he was chosen here.

    My enthusiasm is tempered by the fact that we won’t likely see what happened for months, if that.

  12. neutrino says:

    Darwin should evolve a defense for going on missions for Xavier.

    “Wolverine” is preferable to “X-23”, literally her slave name.

  13. Luis Dantas says:

    We will have to agree to disagree on that, Neutrino.

  14. Luis Dantas says:

    And not just because it is, after all, a dehumanizing label in and of itself.

  15. Taibak says:

    CJ: Where in St. Louis? I went to grad school at SLU and lived off South Grand and in the Central West End.

    And I suppose nobody’s raised issues with the fact that the Krakoans have prioritized people they know and not, say, the random mutants who appeared in one panel of Frank Tieri’s Weapon X series?

  16. Jeff says:

    Lots of St. Louis folks here! I’m from the South Hampton area, I actually went back for a visit this weekend. Always liked Synch sporting the Blues jersey in his first appearance.

    I think this was my favorite issue so far as it picked up on a lot of the tech threads from HoX/PoX and seemed to have higher stakes than a lot of the previous issues. Plus the art is just great.

  17. Adam K. says:

    Put me down as another fan of Synch, the art, and the issue overall. I wish it was more than just a one off.

    It’s great to see a possible return of City and the Children. Hickman’s Ultimates run was incredibly promising in the beginning and a lot of fun. Unfortunately it was completely derailed when he and Ribic left after completing only 9 issues in what was obviously a 12 issue story (or Marvel pulled them to work on Avengers and Thor, respectively). Whatever the reason for their abrupt departure, it killed the series and I have always been disappointed by that.

    Some might say it was no great loss, but this happened when Bendis was still running the main Avengers titles so I had to get my kicks where I could.

    Hopefully he can give the concept a proper ending this time.

  18. Michael says:

    And yet out of all the many, many mutants who have died over the years, they fast-tracked…

    Jumbo Carnation, fashion designer.

    I wonder if anyone’s keeping a master list of “Mutants Who Have Died” and cross-referencing it against “Mutants Who Have Been Brought Back” yet. I figure there’s a lot of former students of the school from the Academy X/M-Day era who are owed a speedy return as well.

    And yet there seems to be this priority system where Actual Big Names get fast-tracked if they die in the line of duty -and- they get to make special requests (Shinobi Shaw for instance…)

    I hope we get to see someone examine the set of standards that go into the resurrection protocols–such as when Mystique starts getting antsy about Destiny’s return. Or when someone asks why Blindfold isn’t back.

  19. Si says:

    I’d love a story that looks at how all the character mutants are the ones that get resurrected immediately, live in mansions, and mostly look like sexy humans, while any given scene of a crowd of mutants will have almost all of them being weird technicolor chimerae or freaks. So the majority of mutants are more like Glob Herman, but they’re represented by Jean Grey. Is it open bigotry? Unconscious bias? Xavier doesn’t like snot creatures? Does he regret recruiting Hank McCoy while he was representing as human-looking?

    I mean, we all know the real reasons, but in-universe it’s a fascinating angle.

  20. Joseph S. says:

    Yes, well obviously the situation is not good, to put it mildly. But beyond forcing an ethical crisis re: resurrection (resurXion?)

    OK, there are risks. You have to get in, and most crucially, get out. We’re sending you in because you three are uniquely positioned to survive the non-evolutionary, technological time dilation effect. Last time the Vault opened several THOUSAND years had passed. Laura reacts strongly, Synch cracks a joke, Darwin is earnest. But they all acknowledge that they are looking at potentially thousands of years. (This itself draws a parallel to Moira’s Powers of X^3 life. And considering Armor is present, we might also recall that she and some other Young X-Men spent years in the AoA timeline during that battle in X-Men Dissassembled, something that is nodded to in having her be the one to point out that there are risks.)

    So as they knowingly embark on this mission with a figure of thousands of years hanging over them, 537 years really doesn’t seem so significant. Cyclops knew the risks, the team knew the risks, and so far they’re radically under the timeframe of the last time the Vault opened.

    Again, obviously this is not ideal, but it seems well within the mission parameters as laid out in the opening pages. So why is Cyclops reaction so exaggerated? To contrast to Xavier’s cold calculating demeanor? To hint that Cyclops was being manipulated?

  21. Allan M says:

    From what we’ve seen and making some guesses, tiers for resurrection:

    0. The Five (given how dependent on resurrection the plan is, I assume they’d drop everything to revive any dead member of the Five with a credible replacement swapped into the process, e.g., Jamie Braddock for Proteus, Synch for Hope.)

    1. The Quiet Council (instant queue, as we’ve seen twice now)

    2. Captains (hasn’t happened yet, but it’s the only other form of authority and Krakoa’s military leadership).

    3. Mutants with critical safety/security functions (the Morlock healer was fast-tracked. Black Tom and Forge seem like obvious priorities.)

    4. Active duty strike teams serving the Krakoan state (Marauders, X-Force, Excalibur.)

    5. Potential alternate Five members (they took some time before bringing back Jamie Braddock, whereas Quentin was queued for resurrection immediately, hence I put active duty over potentials).

    6. Trained mutant combatants, i.e. X-Men and associated teams. Focus seems to be on the adults – the dead New Mutants were back immediately, but most of the Hellions and New X-Men remain dead so far (or just off-panel). Presumably with an eye to have mutants who can defend the island.

    Whether Xavier students explicitly get priority over other groups is unclear, though most resurrection priority references are in data pages like diaries, so likely not. Emma’s presumably lobbying for the Hellions, Exodus for the Acolytes, whereas I doubt Sinister is fussed if the Nasty Boys stay dead awhile.

    7, Everyone else. As Si notes, the upper tiers are near-universally very human-looking, pretty mutants. I agree that someone should do a story about that eventually.

    Jumbo Carnation’s an outlier to my tier setup. Emma lobbying for him must’ve helped.

  22. Paul says:

    There are two likely reasons for bringing back Jumbo Carnation. One, they want to prove to everyone that resurrection works, in a world where superheroes come back from the dead quite often anyway. Jumbo is a civilian. It’s different. Two, they’re trying to build a mutant culture. A high profile mutant artist is useful there, and Jumbo is probably the best they have.

  23. Taibak says:

    Which makes you wonder how this eventually will play out. There were thousands of mutants in Neverland. Presumably nobody at Marvel cares enough to address this point, but are they all going to end up on Krakoa? How many of them did the X-Men even know about?

  24. CJ says:


    From U. City! Around North & South. I could walk to Clayton to the defunct Library Ltd. bookstore and buy graphic novels!

    You would think that someone, of all the mutants on Krakoa, would have remembered that resurrecting a mutant who can see the future would be beneficial to them. Maybe some of the attacks could have been prevented. Surely some of the X-Men, or Pyro, remember Destiny, or maybe Armor remembers Blindfold.

    It seems like any mutant on the island should find it bizarre or shady that the likes of Blindfold or Destiny haven’t returned yet.

  25. Joseph S. says:

    X-Men #6, out next week, is a Mystique story, so presumably we will be hearing about her thoughts on Destiny soon enough. (Or it’ll be an espionage story that barely advances the plot.)

  26. Taibak says:

    Used to be a good pizza place in U.City. Can’t remember the name of it though. Only went there once… oddly enough just a few days before I moved out and went back to Boston.

  27. CJ says:

    Frank & Helen’s? And I went to grad school in Boston, live in Worcester. I’m…not convinced one of us hasn’t died and been resurrected into the other.

  28. Andrew says:

    My memory of it was that yeah, Hickman left the Ultimates much earlier than anticipated. He completed his Hawkeye mini and did six or seven Ultimates issues, co-wrote one or two more and was gone.

    I’m not sure if it was ever discussed why he was gone but obviously it was only a few months later than he was on Avengers/New Avengers and getting ready for Infinity so I can see the argument that they wanted him to focus on bigger stuff.

  29. Taibak says:

    CJ: Nah. This place was a lot bigger and right on the Loop. Only thing I remember is that you ordered shortly after you walked in and you had this wrought iron thingy that held your order number at your table.

  30. Alan L says:

    @Joseph S:

    “While I agree it was a bit slight, my main complain is with the bookend of Cyclop’s reaction. As far as I can tell, wasn’t jettisoning the trio for centuries /precisely/ the plan? Didn’t they specifically acknowledge that they might very well not get out at all? I understand he cares about his soldiers and all, but it just doesn’t seem like he plan’s gone off the rails.”

    I think the actual narrative trajectory of this book, rather than being very much about the individual stories that feature in it (which I think are, as others have suggested, introducing us to new villains for the Hickman age), is found in Cyclop’s consistent failures. The first issue goes to some length to show us he’s a true believer in the Krakoa experiment, and that he gets everything he wants in life out of that (purpose as a soldier, which is implied, I think, to be a little sad, and his whole family gathered around him, essentially in peace). Yet the weird little detail slips in that he’s essentially being sort of cuckolded by Wolverine. Admittedly this is implied to be a two–way street of sorts, or even a full-on roundabout of bedchambers shared, but Cyclops treats Jean very intimately in the first couple of issues, and there seems to be very little return on this. When Cyclops comes to the Quiet Council a couple of issues later he gets close to Jean and thinks there’s something wrong. “Should I be worried?” he asks, meaning should he be worried for her? Jean says yes, but she means he ought to be worried about himself, because her response is that they’re sending Cyclops out into the field. Then Cyclops starts losing stuff, which is the recurring motif that annoys me most in these stories. He does poorly against the creature from the other island––it’s heavily implied he could never win against the creature, even with his very powerful future children––and then he gets clobbered by the grannies in that insipid issue, and in this one his vaunted strategic brain seems to have failed him. The whole scheme in this issue is implied to have been ill–conceived, and Cyclops regrets it and––key to all of this––doubts himself. If you add in HoX, Cyclops also leads a pathetically doomed mission against the Master Mold space station, in which he is heavily out-strategized even after gaining and keeping the element of surprise, and he sacrifices his whole team to get the mission done. Cyclops is not doing well in the Hickman regime.

    The most illustrative scene of where this is going is, I think, the one where he stands before the Quiet Council. Cyclops is positioned in the middle of them, where Sabretooth stood in HoX/PoX; his lover, Jean, is clearly distancing herself from him in the scene, and Cyclops is made to take the blame for recent events, like letting the New Mutants go off into space, taking Cypher off the island. Cyclops accepts the blame. A bunch of the panels are arranged in which we stare down at Cyclops in the center of the circle, being judged. It’s heavily implied with all these stylistic choices that Cyclops is headed for trouble, falling out of favor as rapidly as he seems to be.

    After the bookend scenes in the last issue, I’m beginning to suspect that Cyclops will turn out to be the next victim of the Quiet Council, to be taken wherever Sabretooth was taken––which, if we follow him there, would make for a pretty fresh development of the larger Krakoa story. This book just seems to be setting him up so overtly for failure upon failure. Perhaps it isn’t a coincidence that Cyclops is the one that arrives to try to pick up Creed when the Fantastic Four apprehend him in HoX (of course, he fails there, too). Is Cyclops’ journey meant to follow upon Creed’s, on down the rabbit hole? I think it would be cool to ultimately see Cyclops on the other side of glass, looking in at an ill–conceived utopia full of dirty secrets to uncover. I’d love to believe this is where Hickman is going with this title, but I just have this niggling doubt.

  31. Chris V says:

    Hickman did leave Ultimates early.

    He was on the title for twelve issues though. He wrote nine issues solely on his own, and then co-wrote his final three.
    He had completed the story-arc he had started, ending with the dissolution of the United States’ federal government.
    That’s quite the cliffhanger to hand over to a new writer.

    I think that Hickman was able to bring to fruition most of his big ideas while on the Ultimates book before he did leave.

  32. Chris V says:

    Alan L-Hickman has been quite ambiguous about the nature of Krakoa.
    Elements of it are unsettling, but how we are meant to read this aren’t so apparent.

    What was done to Sabretooth was meant to make a point, and induce fear in the populace of Krakoa, to make sure that they follow the laws of Krakoa.
    Sending Cyclops “below” simply for failing to succeed in his missions would make it readily apparent that Krakoa isn’t any sort of paradise.
    I doubt that Hickman is going in that direction.
    Hickman wants to keep the ambiguity and mystery of Krakoa.

    As far as I’m concerned, the show trail for Sabretooth was to put an end to the conflict with “evil mutants”.
    The law says that “mutants cannot kill humans”.
    This could very lead quickly spiral in to a civil war situation on Krakoa, recreating the mutants versus mutant dynamic that has been so prominent in X-Men history since the beginning.
    Instead, there’s a threat looming over every mutant now.
    Either embrace the laws of Krakoa or face the horrible punishment of Sabretooth.

    This does away with two sources of conflict which have plagued mutantkind; the never-ending human-mutant violence, and the concomitant mutant versus mutant battles over mutant-human conflict.

  33. neutrino says:

    @Luis Dantas: What are you disagreeing about? That “X-23” isn’t “a dehumanizing label in and of itself”?

    @Joseph S.: They weren’t planning on them staying thousands of years, they were warning that if they couldn’t get out on their own, they’d be trapped there until they died of old age, if nothing else. Their deaths might never be able to be confirmed.

    If the Five are resurrecting at a rate of 1000 per week, they should have done all the dead mutants in the list Xavier had, minus Genosha plus the Morlock Massacre. Supposedly the Hellions are back, in the Sextant. (Including Tarot?)

    It looks like the Vault has a population of 600 pods with five Children each. “Serafina” is also called a class, so the one here may be a younger version (level 2) of the one who appeared previously. Carey did an arc in X-Men: Legacy where the Children had abandoned their plans to take over the Earth and moved to an interdimensional city called The Corridor, I wonder if that will be addressed.

  34. Jeff says:


    Are you thinking of Racanelli’s? I bought this issue at the Maplewood Fantasy Shop, by the way.

    One thing that is bothering me with the Resurrection Protocol is how cavalier the X-Men have gotten with dying. I guess it’s supposed to be that it is no longer a big deal for them, but it makes them looks like chumps for constantly getting killed. I’d rather they still be an elite fighting force. To be fair, I don’t think Hickman has gone to this well much, but titles like X-Force certainly have.

  35. Taibak says:

    CJ: Definitely wasn’t Racanelli’s. It was a pretty nice restaurant but, like I said, this was a long time ago. And definitely have fond memories of Fantasy Shop.

    And come to think of it, there may be a story in the horde of nameless mutants who were killed off in Weapon X. We know that some of them were children and, if the Krakoans are serious about bringing them all back, they have to be on the list.

    And it’s very easy to imagine a newly resurrected ten year old wandering Krakoa and missing their old friends.

  36. Krzysiek Ceran says:

    It does seem that the X-Men started going down like chumps, but… in my mind Hickman is the worst offender here. Consider – so far we had Xavier die (which was part of a plan, more or less specifically) and Quentin die (that was 100% chump) in X-Force. Apocalypse died in Excalibur – again, part of a plan. New Mutants and Fallen Angels had zero deaths. I’m not sure about Kate yet – I haven’t read the newest issue so I don’t know what happened with that cliffhanger.

    In any case, that’s 3 to 4 deaths, 2 of which were generally or specifically part of the dying mutant’s plan (or improvised plan, in case of Apocalypse).

    In contrast to that, Hickman had a team of, what, 8 mutants die on a mission that generally we would expect the X-Men to perform without casualties?

    Oh, right, I forgot about Healer. Well, add that to the X-Force tally. Doesn’t change much.

  37. Luis Dantas says:


    Admitedly, “X-23” isn’t ideal… but at the very least it is an unique identifier, while “Wolverine” brands Laura as literally no person of her own, but instead a continuation of someone else… a man who is no role model and not even much of a presence in her life, to boot.

    I definitely see sticking to “X-23” as preferable.

    Then again, I won’t be caught favoring Wolverine over anything or anyone else in most situations…

  38. neutrino says:

    It’s the designation of her as the 23rd clone of a batch created by people who saw her as just a weapon. It was literally created to dehumanize her. Wolverine is her adopted father and she took the name of her free will to honor him.

  39. Krzysiek Ceran says:

    The side-plot of Laura coming to see the value in costumed superheroics, leading to her taking on the Wolverine name, was one of the few good things in the whole Death of Wolverine/Wolverines mess.

    Just typing that I had Wolverines flashbacks. What a weird book that was. There definitely was a genetically-engineered lizard monster with Thor for a tongue somewhere in there. I am 90% positive I saw that in a comic book and not in a fever dream.

  40. Luis Dantas says:

    I understand the logic behind Laura taking the “Wolverine” name. I still find it so very, very failed.

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