One by one, members of the X-Men are falling at the hands of Mojo and his twisted battle simulations, but the cavalry has arrived! Enter: MAGNETO, POLARIS, and DANGER! But is it too late?
X-MEN BLUE #14
Writer: Cullen Bunn
Artist: Jorge Molina
Color Artist: Matt Milla
Cover Artists: Arthur Adams & Peter Steigerwald
Publisher: Marvel Comics
What You Need to Know:
Bringing his attack to Earth, Mojo has placed three groups of X-Men in various battle scenarios themed after their “Greatest Hits” (as Mojo calls them) or rather, some of their historic battles. These scenarios are simultaneously being broadcast on live tv. So far, the death toll has risen to five, with Bloodstorm, Old Man Logan, Storm, Iceman and Angel all being killed during the battles.
What You’ll Find Out:
After a few pages of recap from Mojo and his Major Domo, we learn that Mojo is sending more golden spires to earth to increase his “neural remapping and terraforming”.
Checking in on Team Two (Nightcrawler, Jean Grey, Jimmy Hudson, Hank McCoy and Colossus), we find the heroes battling amalgamated versions of some of their deadliest villains; a Phoenix Sentinel, X-Brood, etc. Jean is impaled in the left shoulder by a Brood with metal claws. Colossus quickly performs a Fastball Special with the panicked Jimmy who trashes the alien. Nightcrawler then teleports them away to safety, allowing them to share a brief moment with Jean in Jimmy’s arms. It doesn’t go unnoticed by Hank.
With Mojo commenting on the doom, gloom, and drama, he switches to earth for a moment, just in time to see more golden spires headed right for the city. As they pierce the concrete, Mojo notices three unscheduled guest appearances by Magneto, Polaris, and Danger!
With the new spires in place, they too become transported to another “Greatest Hits” scenario, one that hits Magneto particularly hard: The Mutant Massacre. Deep within the Morlock tunnels, and with Polaris now in her Malice costume, and Magneto wearing his “M” costume, the Marauders appear before the new “players”.
Switching channels to Team One (Rachel Summers, Scott Summers, Kitty Pryde, and Special Guest Star, Longshot), who are fighting for their lives against the Avengers in the Avengers VS X-Men scenario. Longshot is able to make some tech adjustments and teleport them away by hijacking Mojo’s broadcast signal. This infuriates Mojo, so he sends Apolocalypse to the Morlock tunnels to battle Magneto, Polaris, and Danger.
Back to Team One, surrounded by their enemies, Hank begins spell to spirit them away, but as he starts to transform to the demonic Beast, ruby colored beams from above blast their enemies away. Team two has arrived to save them! But when Longshots cameras teleport them all away again, they start to malfunction. Not sure where they are, Jimmy Hudson senses something behind a door. It’s all of the “dead” X-Men, alive and held in some kind of stasis chambers. Seemingly unharmed, save for the experience of”dying”. Recognizing the area, Longshot recommends leaving quickly before they are discovered. Having located them, Mojo seems delighted to find out teams in his own backyard; MOJOWORLD, as more spires head towards New York City.
What Just Happened?
Mojo Worldwide Part 4 sets the stage for the finale. Cullen Bunn is moving the story along nicely, and all the homages throughout should satisfy longtime fans of the X-Men. I like the direction he’s going with Jimmy and Jean and Hank. Some might say, “oh, another love-triangle with Jean in the middle”, but none of the three are actually characters we’ve known for terribly long. Their personalities have been fleshed out well enough and the directions their stories seem to be headed, are quite different than their Prime counterparts. There’s also a triangle of sorts happening between Cyclops, Bloodstorm and Angel, with both young men showing a heightened interest in her.
I’m really enjoying the interaction between Magneto and his daughter Polaris. Magneto is willing to share with the world that he is indeed still alive in order to save the X-Men but his passion for their cause takes a dark turn when he shifts full focus to attacking the Marauder simulations, to the point where Polaris steps in to remind him that they need to find the X-Men. Again, nice nods to the past and great characterization.
I’ve enjoyed Jorge Molina on art duties. There are times when his work reminds me of the wonderful Olivier Coipel.
“Iconic” is a word I like to use to describe the amazing Arthur Adams. His covers never dissapoint.
Final thought: This cross-over has been a fun read, that manages to appeal to new and old readers of the X-Mythos. The bi-weekly schedule works well for a cross-over like this , but, I wouldn’t mind the title going monthly for the sake of further fleshing out subplots and characterization.