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Mar 19

X-Force #9 annotations

Posted on Thursday, March 19, 2020 by Paul in Annotations

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

I was going to start doing reviews of the first volumes of the individual titles last weekend but, well, the pace of events has proved something of a distraction. No doubt there will be plenty of time for it in the time ahead. In the meantime, let’s continue with what can’t help feeling a little bit like telegrams from a bygone era…

COVER / PAGE 1. Domino, Wolverine and Kid Omega in the Terra Verde jungle. Domino is looking especially 90s here, and you’d think she’d be more bothered about that snake climbing up her leg. It isn’t what she wears in the actual story either… Admittedly, Wolverine is similarly underdressed

PAGES 1-3. Wolverine and Daken play Spin the Bottle Russian Roulette in the Green Lagoon Tiki Bar.

Um. Basically, the rule here is that if the bottle stops facing you, you have to stab yourself in the head with your claws. Even granted that these guys both have healing factors, this is stupid – I just don’t buy either of them being interested in that sort of game, or lots of people gathering round to watch it, especially the characters actually shown here. Yes, Jean says that she thinks X-Force has undermined her moral compass… but what about the rest of the characters here? It feels like gratuitous gore to me.

Anyway, the characters shown watching the game:

  • The unnamed kid spinning the bottle is Scout, formerly Honey Badger, from the X-23 Wolverine series.
  • The redhead just behind Wolverine is Siryn (easier to identify in the double page spread), though she’s nowhere near bloodthirsty enough for this.
  • The guys in green and yellow are Multiple Man duplicates.
  • Egg (formerly Goldballs) is a weird inclusion both in terms of his personality and because we’ve been told that the Five normally hang out with each other… did I mention that I hate this scene?
  • Next to him looks to be Cypher.
  • On the other side of Scout is Toad from the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, and latterly the X-Men’s janitor during the Wolverine and the X-Men period.
  • The guy in glasses with the stick is Triage, one of Cyclops’ trainees during the Bendis era. He died in Uncanny X-Men vol 5 #21, and this is the first time we’ve seen him since his evident resurrection.
  • Visible in a later panel is Avalanche, from a different version of the Brotherhood. He was murdered by the Red Skull in Uncanny Avengers vol 1 #1, and this is the first time we’ve seen him since his resurrection.

PAGE 5. A double page spread of the Green Lagoon.

This is the tiki bar mentioned in last issue’s data page, and created by Black Tom. The official purpose of the place is to “encourage a sense of community, social play, stress relief and mutant reproduction.” Some of the tiki statues are actually based on Cyclops’ Bendis-era costume.

The characters visible… deep breath…

In the top left, sitting at the bar are Marrow, Magneto and a guy with a pipe who could be anyone, really. Behind them are Professor X with his signature helmet, and Gentle with the metal strips on his body. No idea who the two either side of Gentle are. The weird guy standing over Marrow’s shoulder might be Razorhead, a one-off villain from X-Statix #5.

The signposts next to them have three visible destinations. One is Muir Island, where Moira MacTaggert’s Mutant Research Centre was based. The other two are in Krakoan. The top one is meant to say WESTCHESTER (where the X-Men Mansion was), though it’s wrongly used the C and the H symbols instead of the one that represents CH. I can’t read the other one clearly enough to decode.

Serving at the bar are Anole (the lizard guy), Nightcrawler (in mid teleport, and also visible at the top.) and the Blob.

Sitting around the rest of the bar, starting at the left and working anticlockwise…

  • Somebody whose hand is in shot.
  • Iceman.
  • Bedlam, a late-nineties member of X-Force. He’s only appeared in cameos since being revived on Krakoa.
  • Frenzy, or Joanna Cargill, the former Acolyte who went on to be an X-Man in the Mike Carey run.
  • Gambit and Rogue.
  • Black Tom Cassidy
  • Two ordinary-looking men, presumably mutant civilians before they came to Krakoa.
  • Penance (presumably Monet St Croix) and Maggott.
  • One of the Stepford Cuckoos.
  • Sage.
  • A blond guy carrying a cocktail.

Behind the Cuckoo, watching the show…

  • Storm and Forge, who used to be a couple; she doesn’t seem that interested in talking to him.
  • Domino
  • Selene, the former Black Queen
  • Strong Guy, with his arm around her (which is odd, but she doesn’t seem to be resisting.)
  • A man with a red headband who could be anyone.
  • Psylocke (the current one, ie Kwannon)
  • A woman with a silver-white body and red hair, seen from behind.
  • Someone with spiky hair, being held by a huge guy with white hair.
  • Wolfsbane, sitting on the shoulders of a man with red skin.

On the stage are Dazzler singing, Shark Girl on drums, and a woman who’s presumably Lila Cheney, the rockstar teleporter who used to be Cannonball’s girlfriend in the 80s.

At top right, Christian Frost is leaving hand in hand with an unrecognisable person in a black cloak (which is odd given that Marauders has shown him as mainly interested in Iceman – but this is Krakoa, where everyone seems to be in very flexible relationships).

To his right, you can see Mr Sinister watching, with a woman behind him. Down in the bottom right, also watching from a perch, are Tempus of the Five, and an unrecognisable guy in shadow.

In the water on the right:

  • Bling!, last seen in Fallen Angels.
  • She’s talking to Transonic from Generation Hope.
  • Tempo from the Mutant Liberation Front.

Wolverine and Daaken’s game can be seen from the reverse angle. This reveals the Krakoan text on Scout’s bench, which reads MAKE MORE MUTANTS (the Krakoan law which this place is supposed to be encouraging). Also watching, from this angle, are Colossus and Mystique. Colossus seems to be drinking an entire bottle of something, and it isn’t beer. Behind them are Forearm of the Mutant Liberation front, and Gorgeous George (of whom more later). Behind them we can see Mirage of the New mutants, and a woman with red hair and a cape, presumably Hope. Cyclops and Jean are, of course, sharing their table with Apocalypse.

The other table (bottom left) has another Multiple Man, Havok, Karma (with her cyborg leg on the table), Polaris and Banshee.

Just entering the bar from the left is Emma Frost, flanked by Callisto and Jumbo Carnation from Marauders.

The golden mermaid in the bottom left is Lifeguard from X-Treme X-Men – she doesn’t always look like a mermaid, but her body adapts. She’s barely been seen since M-Day. And the other guy sitting with his feet in the water appears to be Sebastian Shaw, presumably drunk.

PAGE 6. Domino and Sage talk.

Domino has been resurrected without her memories of being tortured by XENO in South Korea. She assumes that this was what she asked for. As we saw last issue, it isn’t. She specifically asked to remember everything, and Colossus promised to make sure that happened. Presumably he betrayed her because he believed it would make her happier (and he seems to have been right in the short term).

PAGE 7. Recap.

PAGE 8. Credits. This is “The Moral Jungle” by Benjamin Percy, Joshua Cassara and Dean White.

PAGES 9-10. Black Tom gets into a fight with Gorgeous George.

Black Tom is clearly being driven mad by the continual experience of being linked to Krakoa. As George points out, this makes Tom highly dubious as a protector of Krakoa. It’s hard to believe that the Quiet Council haven’t picked up on this, so you have to wonder what the agenda is in putting him in this position.

Gorgeous George was a member of the Nasty Boys, who were henchmen of Mr Sinister during Peter David’s X-Factor run. They’ve done very little since, until getting killed during the Rosenberg Uncanny X-Men run. Evidently he’s been brought back on Krakoa. He’s a D-list henchman, basically.

Scout calls Wolverine “family” because she’s a clone of X-23, who in turn is the clonal “daughter” of Wolverine.

PAGE 11. Data page. The “then” section is a repeat of information that we were given about Terra Verde in issue #6. That story was apparently “several months ago”, which seems a bit ambitious in terms of the Marvel timeline.

“I couldn’t possibly have had anything to do with this.” The point of issue #6 was that Beast’s attempts to stymie Terra Verde’s “telefloronics” investment had gone horribly wrong and created a monster. Clearly, Beast’s plan hasn’t worked, and he’s getting defensive about it.

PAGES 12-13. Wolverine, Domino and Kid Omega set off for Terra Verde.

Wolverine has obviously picked up on the discrepancy between Domino asking to have her memories removed on her resurrection, and the way she was talking beforehand. He seems more to view it as a bad call on her part, though.

PAGES 14-17. Terra Verde is overrun with plants.

Sage and Jean. Beast gives no particular reason for leaving them out, but they’re both telepaths. The implication is that he doesn’t want them around to pick up on his thoughts if this is all his fault.

Beast’s mug. The visible Krakoan reads MORN– SUNS–. (“Morning sunset”?)

President Cocom. We say him before in issue #6, since when things haven’t worked out well for him.

PAGE 18. A data page from Beast’s logbook about the mythology of Terra Verde. The Mayan angle isn’t new – it dates from Fantastic Four #117. The Olmec were indeed an earlier civilisation.

Broadly, Beast is telling us that pre-colonisation Terra Verde had myths about plant gods, somewhat analogous to Krakoa itself. “Ya’ax” is simply the Mayan word for green. It’s a bit Swamp Thing.

Beast mentions that Krakoa “requires the consumption of two mutants each year if it is to thrive.” That refers back to Krakoa trying to consume the X-Men in Giant-Size X-Men #1. We’ve previously been told that this isn’t a problem on Krakoa now, because there are so many mutants that Krakoa can take a little energy from each of them, with no problems. Beast… doesn’t exactly phrase it that way. But he could simply mean that Krakoa takes the equivalent of two mutants each year.

PAGES 19-20. X-Force reach the temple.

Straightforward.

PAGES 21-24. Beast sends Black Tom into the field, while X-Force discover Terra Verde’s “angry god”.

Since Black Tom is meant to be a crucial part of Krakoan defence, Beast really shouldn’t be sending him off on a mission designed principally to cover up his own blunders.

Cain Marko. Black Tom and the Juggernaut were long-time partners in 80s and 90s stories in particular. Although Juggernaut was an X-Man for a time, he isn’t a mutant and presumably can’t visit the island.

“Diseased nature oftentimes breaks forth in strange eruptions.” Henry IV Part 1, Act 3 Scene 1.

PAGES 25-26. Trailers and credits. The Krakoan reads NEXT: MALIGNANT GROWTH.

Bring on the comments

  1. Ben says:

    Yeah,, that bar scene is egregiously goofy and out of character.

    I did like see Gorgeous George though, one of my favorite nobodies.

    Not sure why I didn’t drop this yet like some of the others.

    I do really like the art.

    HoxPox is the X-Men’s gas leak season.

  2. Evilgus says:

    “Two ordinary-looking men, presumably mutant civilians before they came to Krakoa.”
    I presumed this to be done kind of Easter Egg. Claremont and…?

    Much as the Russian Roulette scene was ridiculous, I really loved the double page spread. So many characters to see!

    And I’m enjoying X-Force overall. It’s made me invest in Domino as a character. I have a horrible feeling Beast will do a number on Sage once she’s figures out something is up. Mutant murder…

  3. Ben says:

    If you like Domino now, read her recent series.

  4. Si says:

    Can Wolverine’s adamantium claws even get through his adamantium skull?

  5. Allan M says:

    So when Daken loses, he has to stab himself through the head with his claws, probably causing himself brain damage among other things. And if Wolverine loses, he suffers three minor wounds in the side of his head before his adamantium skull stops any further injury. Little bit tilted in Logan’s favour.

    Up next: mutant arm wrestling, where the objective is to rip off your opponent’s arm! With Colossus on one side, and Artie on the other.

  6. YLu says:

    Percy said in an interview that the double-page spread was done in close collaboration with the other X-writers and that it holds clues about current and upcoming stories across the entire line. Some of the odd bits might be meaningful.

  7. CJ says:

    Yeah, if the head-stabbing scene were some kind of parody a la Garth Ennis, or a painful way to get out of a situation, I could see it working, but it was just eye-rollingly stupid. Somehow this felt worse than “Wolverine coming back from a skeleton”.

    Much less in front of everyone else, at a party. “Hey kids! Watch this guy stab himself in the head! X-treme!”

    I think Forge would’ve been a better fit for Beast’s role in this series.

  8. Si says:

    Forge isn’t usually immoral though, right?

    I would love it if, as someone suggested, it turns out Cerebro couldn’t tell the difference between Vanilla Beast and AoA Beast, so they’re kind of seamlessly blended into one personality now.

  9. Chris V says:

    He was as originally created, when he was developing new weapons for the DoD.
    He created the gun that cost Storm her powers on behalf of Gyrich.

  10. Si says:

    Yeah, but from (unreliable) memory, Forge made the gun with good intentions, to be used against your Magnetoes and Sabretooths and so-on, and was horrified when he saw it in use. At worst he’s a Tony Stark type. Beast on the other hand has long let his morals take a back seat to his intellect.

  11. Alan L says:

    It used to be that the characters on X-force had a grey-area about killing in their psychological makeup or experience. Now it’s just whoever on the team. Quentin Quire, whatever. Forge did show up and make them all a bunch of really intense weapons, so he’s doing his bit for the ultra-violence.

    Beast I guess makes sense for this team, but I still don’t see what Jean is doing there. She says early in the issue that X-force has desensitized her to a lot of violence, but I couldn’t help wondering what had she done that she has to complain about? She’s been absent for the field team’s missions.

    Also, that seems to imply that X-force has done a lot of missions, more than we’ve seen. But the narrative of the book has so far been fairly temporally confined to the present. Professor X gets shot, X-force finds Domino and gets revenge. X-force goes to Terra Verde, works thing out. Domino chases down the fake Domino, dies, gets resurrected. At the start of this story, Domino has just been resurrected. So I guess between the rescue of Domino and Domino killing the fake Domino, a whole bunch of other adventures happened. But that timing doesn’t really feel right to me.

    Honey Badger and Gorgeous George are on the page as being players in this story, but they don’t come on the mission. I’d actually like to see the X-men running missions alongside villains a little more, since I have to swallow this implausible status quo. I wish they’d sent Gorgeous George with them to Terra Verde. Is it just that whoever has a speaking role in the issue gets their thumbnail on the character page?

    I thought that Domino getting her memories erased was an intimation that things weren’t right with Krakoa in general, not that Colossus didn’t tell them to give her her memories back. The implication that something was weird about X-force seemed to me to be another “Krakoa is not as it seems” intimation as well, not that Beast was going off the reservation as he ran this one mission. I guess reading it as Colossus couldn’t bring himself to let her get those horrible memories back and Beast is just a loose cannon running X-force makes more sense, but I was just getting a little excited that something might have been moving within the glacial forward motion of this Dawn of X narrative. Sad to see that it will probably not augur some big move to come. Altogether, these stories are taking forever to accrue much meaning at all.

  12. Daniel says:

    This sounds bloody awful.

  13. YLu says:

    @Alan L

    Jean incinerated those plant-men during the initial Terra Verde mission.

  14. Krzysiek Ceran says:

    “A woman with a silver-white body and red hair, seen from behind.” If we assume she’s a previously established character, I’d say it’s Mercury.

    I read that the two guys in the center are supposed to be Claremont and Byrne.

    The Russian roulette scene was dumb. Especially since it’s the first on-page interaction between Gabby and OG Middle Age Man Logan (I think?). A connection between the two has never before been established and now it’s… whatever this is.

  15. Andrew says:

    Paul, I’m curious.

    Given the current pandemic situation, what kind of impact do you foresee it having on Marvel and the X-Books in coming months and years?

  16. Voord 99 says:

    Definitely would also be interested in hearing our host’s thoughts on that. Both our hosts, in fact — perhaps they could add it as an item for discussion whenever they have time to do another episode? (Which I realize will probably not be soon, under the circumstances.)

    I hope that everyone is bearing up well.

  17. Paul says:

    @Andrew: Impossible to say at this stage. The longer this goes on, the more it derails everything. There’s obviously a serious risk of systemic damage to the direct market (and the prices are becoming unsustainable anyway).

  18. Drew says:

    Along with Claremont and Byrne on the right side of the bar, I’ve seen it speculated that the guy next to Magneto smoking a bubble pipe is Jack Kirby, and the guy with glasses in Gentle’s shadow is Stan Lee.

  19. McCarty says:

    This is stupid and lazy writting. The more resent comics have mostly been stupid and uncreative. How lame to have a spin the bottle bar game and call it Russian roulette. That game is played by using a revolver with one bullet in the chamber. You have 6 chances but only 5 not to get shot. Even if Daken was dull enough not to know this Logan sure has hell would know. Do explain how both Daken and Logan plan to play this game of chance when they each can control when and how many of they claws are popped? How the hell is that a game of chance? STUPID.at least get you facts straight before trying to show a scene like this. Lazy. Stupid. And uncreative. Which is the very reason i never buy comics or even watch their movies. Most of them have been just dumb. disappointed. With the exception of some avengers stuff.

  20. neutrino says:

    The Beast’s mug might be “Morning, Sunshine”.
    The bottom sign might be “ALKALI”, as in Alkali Lake.

    I think the spin the bottle game is to show how screwed up Krakoa is.

    Here’s some guesses at the mutants at the Green Lagoon. https://www.reddit.com/r/xmen/comments/fkt6o2/spoiler_xforce_9_can_we_identify_everybody_at/
    That looks like Captain Britain next to Mirage.

  21. Alan L says:

    Yeah, I think the irony is supposed to be that they’re playing a game of Russian roulette in which you have 1 in 2 chances not to get killed, rather than 1 in 6 chances. It’s meant to reflect the nihilism Logan feels as a member of the X-force, like it’s driving him to be more callous and cruel and suicidal––this was implied in a lot more subtle fashion by Kyle and Yost in their X-force run, back when the idea of a secret X-men kill squad still had a few teeth. You’d see Warpath unable to talk to his sort-of girlfriend Hepzibah because he felt so alienated by doing all this killing. You’d see Warren losing it and becoming death personified. In the context of the narrative, it was all a little more tempered and believable. Logan drank a lot, and took out his anger on Cyclops.

    If I thought Percy felt trapped in this new X-men status quo, I might suggest that the roulette game is a metaphor for the near certainty that your characters are going to end up getting killed and resurrected, killed and resurrected. Someone should let Hickman know that when you use the character death trope enough to remove its power, what you’re doing is desensitizing us to its narrative effect. So I could see this as Percy rebelling a little here, asking, “where do we stop with this excessive killing?” But Percy seems to be the writer most on-board with Hickman’s directions and motivations, so I don’t think this is some kind of strangled form of protest against what Percy’s being made to do.

    I loved New X-men, and I think it would be great if Mercury was there in the Green Lagoon, and if she had some kind of story come out of all this. I’m the reader who is perhaps least bothered by Maxine and Manon, but I care a lot more about Mercury, and I’d like to see her have some kind of story stakes going forward.

    It would be great if this status quo meant that we really got some quality time with some of these characters who have been shoved off to the side, or if we got some character time with some of the villains. I’m all on board for a Gorgeous George adventure. I don’t need to see the others there all the time.

  22. wwk5d says:

    “He created the gun that cost Storm her powers on behalf of Gyrich.”

    “Yeah, but from (unreliable) memory, Forge made the gun with good intentions, to be used against your Magnetoes and Sabretooths and so-on”

    If I’m not mistaken, I believe it was originally meant to be used on the Dire Wraiths, no?

  23. Joseph S. says:

    Glad to see Dean White on colors here. My first reaction to the double page spread was that it didn’t fit the tone of the book, but I actually really like it. I’d prefer this kind of thing to seeding future plots in Sinister’s Secrets. That spread is actually a really nice bit of cartooning. There is so much crammed into it. It’s nice to see some actual socializing behind the generic hedonism, and even more so to see some conflict.

    This week actually made me feel a bit more assured about the direction the line is heading in. It feels like by the end of these second arcs, the status quo may have settled in fully, with enough of the threads being pulled together to keep it from feeling like each week is just piling on more new plots that never go anyway.

  24. Chris V says:

    wwk5d-I’m not totally sure, but I believe no.
    Forge was commissioned to create a gun that could detect the Dire Wraiths.
    I don’t think that the two guns were the same. They would serve a completely different purpose.
    I think the fact that Forge created two guns for the Defence Department so close together creates confusion.

    I’m not 100% certain.

    I think everyone was relying on ROM’s gun to send the Dire Wraiths to Limbo.

  25. Allan M says:

    I checked. Per Uncanny #184, Forge’s first appearance, he was hired by the US government to duplicate Rom’s two weapons – an analyzer to spot Dire Wraiths, and a Neutralizer to banish them to limbo. Forge does so “in part” since he can’t get his hands on the real things, and ends up with a gun that “should, theoretically, neutralize the power of any super-being – mutant or otherwise.” (Along with a scanner that can detect super beings, including mutants.) He’s also uncertain about the gun since it hasn’t been tested. In the next issue, he’s furious that Val Cooper’s taken the prototype to take down Rogue, concerned that he doesn’t know what damage it could do to a person while taking their powers away, and tackles Gyrich to stop him from using the gun.

    Then again, when Storm calls him out for designing it in the first place, he says “It’s my job.”, which Storm rightfully points out as being a weak excuse. And that’s the crux of it from a character standpoint – he didn’t have good intentions, even though on paper it was for a good cause (fighting Dire Wraiths), or he would’ve said so to Storm. He instead admits that built it because it was the job he was hired to do.

  26. Daibhid Ceannaideach says:

    I know Wolverine’s claws never look like they could really retract into his hand, but you don’t get much more nineties than a cover where they’d have trouble retracting into his forearm.

  27. Chris V says:

    Thanks Allan.

    Yeah, I remember that they got Forge to take on Tony Stark’s contracts, when Stark refused to build weapons for the government anymore.
    Since Iron Man was meant to be portrayed as more heroic when he made that decision, I’d say Claremont portrayed Forge as somewhat immoral at that point.

  28. Thom H. says:

    Or Claremont just couldn’t justify writing ROM into the X-books.

  29. Chris V says:

    From what I have read, Claremont and Bill Mantlo were friends, and Claremont wanted to include a nod to ROM in the X-Men to help out his friend’s book…hence the Dire Wraiths story.
    Yeah, I guess he couldn’t justify actually using ROM in the plot though.

  30. Taibak says:

    Rom really is an odd bit of Marvel continuity, isn’t he? It’s absolutely mind boggling that he was integrated so deeply into the Marvel universe.

    And I’m kind of surprised Marvel/Disney hasn’t been able to work out a licensing deal to reprint stories he was in.

  31. Dimitri says:

    Rom is a Hasbro property and therefore tied into the ongoing licensing deal with Paramount. I suspect that’s going to complicate any deal to reprint his Marvel series for the foreseeable future.

    Now, NFL Superpro on the other hand…

  32. Anthony says:

    The “could be anyones” are Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Claremont, and Dave Cockrum.

  33. Mark Coale says:

    I wonder which license property has now caused the most trouble retroactively for Marvel?

    Conan, even though it’s now back in the fold?

    Godzilla? Dr Fu Manchu? Micronauts? Star Wars?

  34. Krzysiek Ceran says:

    @Andrew ‘Given the current pandemic situation, what kind of impact do you foresee it having on Marvel and the X-Books in coming months and years?’

    Well, Diamond just announced that after this week they’re suspending operations, so everything’s about to go pear-shaped.

    https://www.bleedingcool.com/2020/03/23/diamonds-steve-geppi-confirms-closure-no-new-comics-after-this-week/

  35. Alex Hill says:

    “I wonder which license property has now caused the most trouble retroactively for Marvel?”

    Death’s Head was created for the Transformers comics, and then shrunk down using the Tissue Compression Eliminator from Doctor Who, so he’s a twofer for things that can’t be mentioned anymore in his backstory.

    I seem to remember the Doctor having some other effect on Marvel continuity that has to be skirted around these days, but I can’t find anything on it so I might be making it up.

  36. Voord 99 says:

    I wonder if any effects of the Doctor on Marvel continuity could be retroactively attributed to Professor Gamble.

  37. Daibhid Ceannaideach says:

    @Alex: The Special Executive? They originally appeared in DWM as working for Gallifrey, before showing up in Captain Britain as the predecessors to Technet.

  38. Taibak says:

    I don’t think the Special Executive are licensed, strictly speaking. I think the issue there is that Alan Moore owns the characters and he doesn’t like to share his toys with Marvel.

  39. SanityOrMadness says:

    Mark Coale> I wonder which license property has now caused the most trouble retroactively for Marvel?

    Almost certainly ROM. That had a bunch of crossovers, and the effective conclusion to Nova’s first series was done in a bunch of guest-appearances, the last of which was in… ROM.

    Micronauts… maybe, but weren’t Marvel still able to reprint the Byrne F4 issues they guested in?

    Conan, I very much doubt it. He’s off in his own far-past era, and Marvel still owned the non-REH characters created for the comic, I believe (hence why Kulan Gath has been a recurring villain even when they didn’t have the Conan licence. Not sure what happened with Red Sonja, did they sell her? Because she certainly got entirely separated from Conan as a property).

    The Doctor Who problem basically amounts to one issue of Death’s Head (as shown when the recent Death’s Head TPB omitted issue 8) and maybe a few other Marvel UK pieces that they show no particular sign of reprinting anyway.

    Taibak> Rom really is an odd bit of Marvel continuity, isn’t he? It’s absolutely mind boggling that he was integrated so deeply into the Marvel universe.

    It was just what Marvel did at the time with all their licensed properties – even Transformers #3 has a bunch of MU guest appearances – Spider-Man primarily, but also his supporting cast, Nick Fury, Dum-Dum Dugan, SHIELD as a whole. And then the Dinobots get dug up in the Savage Land later. It’s not until some way in or so that they really start walking back on it being in the MU.

    I suspect the whole “realise Hasbro own everything created in the book” (which didn’t apply to ROM or Micronauts, hence how Marvel can still use Spaceknights & Dire Wraiths on the one hand; and the Microverse, Bug and a couple of other members on the other) played a big part in that, but even then the Savage Land story comes *after* they introduced Circuit Breaker in Secret Wars II to bagsy her.

  40. Daibhid Ceannaideach says:

    I didn’t even know there was an issue with using them. I thought they were a thing Marvel owned, but had to gloss over the details of their backstory, because that involved licencing issues, like Death’s Head.

  41. YLu says:

    @SanityOrMadness

    The Robert E. Howard estate owns all the characters introduced in Marvel’s Conan comics. The only reason Kulan Gath is a weird exception is because he falls through a loophole. His first appearance was in a Conan/Elric crossover, which obviously had to operate under different contractual rules than your typical Conan comic.

  42. Karl_H says:

    There’s also a pseudo-Godzilla who fills the place of licensed-Godzilla in the MU after the license was lost, a giant monster created by Dr. Demonicus. Not a complicated substitution.

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