It’s an unexpected homecoming reunion for the original Gen X alumni as their fellow alumnus Monet St. Croix merged with her evil brother Emplate attacks Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters! Are they all ready to face M-Plate!? That’s not the only problem; Jubilee’s students and Shogo are caught in between this ambush! The Survival of the Fittest begins now!
GENERATION X # 85
Writer: Christina Strain
Penciler: Almicar Pinna
Color Artists: Felipe Sobreiro
Cover Artists: Terry & Rachel Dodson
Variant Cover: Afu Chan
Lenticular Variant Cover Artists: Harvey Tolibao & Chris Sotomayer (Based on Generation X (1994) #1 by Chris Bachalo)
Publisher: Marvel Comics
The students of Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters were able to rescue civilians from the aftermath of the earthquake caused by Krakoa. Unfortunately, Kid Omega and Morph had a fall-out with their friendship after Kid Omega accidentally injured the love interest of Morph, a fellow classmate, Hindsight.
Meanwhile Jubilee and her student, Bling! tried to find a way out after falling into a sinkhole. While doing so, they both found M-Plate’s current hideout which triggered Roxy’s anxiety attacks. At the same time, they also found a few unconscious Morlocks that were recently attacked by M-Plate. During that moment, Jubilee struggled to control her hunger for blood. Meanwhile, M-Plate was actually observing the two behind the scenes.
Above, Chamber confirmed to Husk that they had rescued all the civilians affected and trapped by the earthquake, except Jubilee and Roxy. With the help of Eye-boy’s new skill, they were able to notice two moving figures underground. Mercury went down ahead of the group to find Roxy who was carrying an unconscious Morlock. She then informed Chamber and Husk that Jubilee was left behind. Chamber and Husk then went below to find an injured and weak Jubilee stabbing her hand on a rebar to distract herself from getting hungry and attacking Bling! and the Morlock. Chamber offered Jubilee to feed off a bit of his blood to help her recover. Jubilee was hesitant but agreed due to the unfortunate circumstance. Unfortunately, Shogo, who was carried by Eye-boy, witnessed in horror his mother feeding off Chamber’s wrist. Jubilee also got caught off guard when she saw her son watched her turn into the monster she feared she would become.
Later that evening at the school, Quentin Quire shrugged off Benjamin Deed’s attempt to apologize. Benjamin then shared this with Nathaniel Carver who thought that Quentin just needed some time alone. Nathaniel then opened up about their current relationship and friend-zoned Benjamin. Outside, Lin Li who was babysitting for Mrs. Opossum’s babies saw Quentin Quire leaving with Krakoa. She tried to ask Quentin where he was going, he then asked her if she would stop him. She then told him that she wouldn’t stop him. Quentin, who believed he proved his point disappointingly left.
What You’ll Find Out:
Somewhere in the Atlantic, Quentin Quire looked at his phones reading Benjamin Deeds messages trying to look for him. Quentin still hurt from their quarrel tossed his phone away. At the Xavier’s School for the Gifted, Jubilee woke up, hearing someone knocking on the door. It was Husk who dropped by for a visit. Jubilee shared that she and Chamber were still tired from their struggle to put Shogo to sleep. She also opened up to her friend that she had been having a hard time getting through Shogo ever since the infant saw her drink blood from Chamber. She then opened up how helpful Chamber was since he was only one of the few guys Shogo would listen to. Husk was surprised that Chamber was good with kids and commented about how she noticed Jubilee and Chamber were getting really close. Husk also offered to help Jubilee clean her kitchen. She also opened up about saving their friend Monet.
Outside the school grounds, Morph expressed to Hindsight that he was still worried about Kid Omega not replying to his messages and that he was still nowhere to be found. They were then joined by their fellow classmate, Eye-boy, and Bling! who expressed how happy they were seeing the two together. However, It was not the case and this reminded Morph of that time he was friend-zoned by Hindsight. He left because he was still hurt by the rejection. Bling! noticed that something was wrong and asked what was going on between the two. Hindsight then shared the fear and insecurities he had because of his powers and how it had affected his past relationships. Bling! then gave her opinion/advice regarding the matter to Nathaniel. They were then interrupted by Nature Girl who asked the gang if they could feel the trees shivering. Behind the scene, M-Plate arrived at the school, unseen to normal eyes except Eye-boy who kind of saw her/him but doubted himself.
Later, inside the school, Hindsight and Nature Girl visited their mentor Jubilee. Nature Girl told Jubilee that one of her bird friends told her the location of Kid Omega. Jubilee, of course, was planning to go after her runaway student. Chamber reassured Jubilee that he will take care of her students who were also going to babysit Shogo while she was away. She then told Shogo that she was leaving, but Shogo still had his tantrums and threw his food at her. She then went to another room to clean herself up. Chamber who went after her encouraged her to talk to him. Jubilee released all the frustrations and fear she had felt after that time Shogo saw her drink Jono’s blood. She also mentioned how worried she felt for Shogo who might also grow up feeling like an outsider. Chamber then comforted her and told her face to face that he had always wanted to say something to her but he kept forgetting. All of a sudden Jubilee kissed Chamber. The two then had an awkward and funny reaction. It got more awkward when Hindsight interrupted them and told them he saw everything. That awkward moment did not last long though since Hindsight asked if he could talk to Jubilee privately.
Somewhere else within the school, Husk was having another therapy session with Bling! who asked her why she wanted to become an X-Man. Husk replied to Roxy that it was a long complicated story but basically she just wanted to become one. She then returned the question to Roxy. Roxy finally expressed and shared the real reason behind her desire becoming an X-Man. That what she felt was actually the opposite and that she was really afraid of becoming one due to the dangers Emplate had shown her when he captured her. Husk told her that this was progress and now Bling! was ready to start finding out what she really wanted.
In the hallway, Morph argued with Hindsight for not telling him that he knew the whereabouts of Quentin. He added that he could have had went along with Jubilee who just left the school to find Quentin Quire. Nature Girl, Eye-Boy with Shogo saw the two arguing. Nature Girl then asked if Benjamin was upset because he also liked Quentin. Eye-Boy then stopped Lin and told her that Ben liked Nathaniel. Lin then pointed out that Benjamin kept following Quentin like how Trevor (Eye-Boy) follows her around. Benjamin then called out Lin saying that it doesn’t mean he was gay he’d get attracted to every guy he goes around. He then gets frustrated and went back to his plan of looking Quentin. As soon as he goes out of the school, all of them saw ghosts walking around the lawn. Nathaniel (Hindsight) then noticed a few ghost speaking his native tongue, which was Korean. He translated it for the group, stating that the ghost was actually looking for Xavier’s school hinting that it disappeared. That’s when the kids realized that they weren’t ghosts but they were teleported in a different dimension. After that, a part of the school exploded and they soon found out that they were being attacked.
Back inside, Husk and Bling! heard the explosion and screams from other students of the school. They bump into Chamber who told them that it wasn’t any Danger Room training session gone wrong since most X-Men were out for a field mission. The three then tried to survey the area and was able to see M-Plate attacking students, Transonic and Anole. Chamber was ready to attack M-Plate when Husk halted him since they had to help Bling! escape first because she was having a panic attack. While they escort Roxy to find a way out, they then heard a loud cry of an infant which made Paige and Jono more worried knowing it was Shogo. M-Plate also heard the cry and tried to follow it, which was coming from one of the school’s laboratory. Inside the laboratory, Jubilee’s students were hiding behind one of the lab tables, trying to calm Shogo down.
What Just Happened:
This issue is moving really fast but I am not complaining. Christina Strain is still able to deliver strong characterization despite the shift of pacing. I am assuming that this is because the book was recently announced to end soon, with 2 more issues left to resolve everything Strain had planned for the series. I am sad about this since you can feel that this was written in a way she had to squeeze in a lot of the important development she might have not originally planned to reveal yet. However, as what I had mentioned she was still able to execute the plot well that it did not seem too rushed or forced at all.
Now everybody who had been following the series knows how Strain had done a good job giving Jubilee some character development. However, in this issue, Chamber was the real star. Even though he had always been a supporting character for Jubilee as her confidant and partner-in-crime, he started becoming one of the most interesting characters in this series. It might be because of the relationship that is blossoming between him and Jubilee. He even acts like Shogo’s father figure lately. Another interesting part was Husk, who used to be Chamber’s fling, witnessing this relationship develop. Husk did not really seem hurt or bothered by this development though. And I like how she took it very maturely like she really had moved on from her younger self’s complicated love life. In fact, I love how the original Generation X (Jubilee, Chamber, and Husk minus M) were written maturely and how they’ve already grown up. Tackling real and relatable grown-up problems and taking in responsibilities of taking care the newer generation of students.
Not only did the book focus on the original team but also the new class. We also get to see another development between Morph’s and Hindsight’s relationship, and how Hindsight’s insecurities and fears are affecting it. Bling!’s struggle and anxieties were tackled in this book too. The realization she shared during her therapy with Husk, her journey of acceptance and the real reason behind why she wanted to become an X-Man. It was written poignantly and I admit it’s one of those rare moments you see in current super-hero comic books. Plus, the book is not all dramas; they were able to squeeze in some light-hearted moments like Nature Girl exposing Eye-boy crushing on her and the potential love triangle between Morph, Hindsight and Kid Omega who currently ran away with Krakoa.
The only minor problem I had with this book was Pinna’s art. His anatomy and perspective seemed kind of awkward this time around. I’d still admit and praise him for the improvements especially the horror feel he was trying to execute. It’s a good thing Sobreiro’s colors did its magic in a way. In which he was able to add depth to Pinna’s art.
- Great characterization from Christina Strain
- Original Generation X reunion/showdown begins
- Felipe Sobreiro’s coloring sets the atmosphere and mood perfectly in this book
- New loveteam “ChamberLee” does not feel too forced
- The horror tone being added in the book and the ambush of M-Plate feels natural
- Despite the improvements, Pinna’s art look awkward on this issue compared to his works last issue
Generation X #85 is a flawed book but Strain still managed to write a consistent characterization of each of the cast, developed new pairing that doesn’t feel forced and kept things exciting. The more interesting part is that she is now starting to focus and address each of the characters issues and conflicts she had built from the start. The saving grace and exciting part of this arc would be the upcoming final showdown between the original Generation X and their former classmate M.