Immoral X-Men #1
Ten years after Sinister insinuated himself into the minds of the Quiet Council, things are going swimmingly for Her Majesty Frost. Pity the same cannot be said for her progenitor.
Gillen’s dark future for the X-Line continues to unspool its strong, implacable spider silk. This story finds our corrupted heroes ten years further down the line, reveling in their own descent into decadent domination. As in every good dystopian story, part of the thrill comes from comparing what exists in the world we know with the horrors that are possible, and Gillen’s take on the trope more than delivers.
These characters have had their flaws magnified via Sinister’s nefarious process, so that we are seeing them almost as he would. From Xavier’s false, facile sorrow at slaughtering a resistance cell (as though he were trying to convince himself that he was capable of regret), to Hope’s 1980’s Action Movie thirst for unthinking violence, to Exodus’ fanatical devotion, and Emma’s almost cartoonish sexual sadism, each character retains an echo of who they were while fully succumbing to Sinister’s spiritual rot. But the fact that all of these characters seem to have become caricatures of themselves hints at the truth, which is that none of them are actually really themselves. Whatever they might think, their personalities are a veneer, pasted over the shell of Sinister. They wear masks of their old faces to disguise the blank, hungry voids beneath. That is the nightmare. That is the truth.
This issue is packed with plot, as it has to be. It’s difficult to cover ten years in twenty-odd pages. We are granted quite a bit of information about what Krakoan society has become, alongside the aforementioned (stellar) character work. The groundwork has been fully laid for the next two issues, including the long-awaited return of one particular fan-favorite.
Paco Medina’s art is nuanced, violent, and incredibly effective. There’s one scene in particular (involving a melting duck) which has to be seen to be believed. Walden Wong and Victor Olazaba ink his line work brilliantly, adding a great deal of detail and contributing, in a big way, to the horrors visible in each panel. Jay David Ramos and Chris Sotomayor work together wonderfully well, producing colors as decadent and unsettling as Evil Emma’s bedroom decor.
This book is like an overripe pomegranate: swollen decadence with a heart full of rot. Pick it up, if you dare.
Immoral X-Men #1: Just A Little Change, Small To Say The Least
- Writing - 10/1010/10
- Storyline - 9.5/109.5/10
- Art - 9.5/109.5/10
- Color - 10/1010/10
- Cover Art - 9.5/109.5/10
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