So…Inhumans vs. Xmen is behind us. We’re more than a month deep into ResurrXion, and Marvel is pivoting towards a DC Rebirth style rebranding. As a huge Xmen fan, how am I feeling about the new titles so far? Well…finally I believe Marvel’s on the right track with the Xmen. For the first time in years, the Xmen feel like their old selves again.
That Old School Feel
The first noticeable thing is that the Comic has a distinct Xmen feel to it. Whether its the baseball game, the subtle nods to old speech patterns, or the mentions of events, hobbies, or traits from the past, Xmen Gold feels like a true Xmen book. It’s been mentioned on various sites that Guggenheim is an old school Xmen fan. Well, it definitely shows. He knews these characters and their past and seems to have a feel for crafting a careful balance between the dramatic family dynamic and the superheroism.
Hated and Feared
Speaking of superheroism, it’s nice to see the Xmen getting back to the basics. If you’d heard me speak about the Xmen on the POW!cast Podcast or really in any capacity, I also mention one thing. The Xmen need to get back to their core competency which is being a group of outcasts who are trying to save a world that hates and fears them.
Issue 1 of Xmen: Gold nailed it and set the Xmen back in that direction. They are heroes that aren’t accepted as heroes. They are unappreciated. There’s a hate group out to eliminate them. And while they are trying to sway the hearts and minds of the common man, other mutants are opting to conduct villianry, contradicting all the Xmen’s efforts. Thank you Guggenheim, you get it!
Return of Mutant Villain Teams
Here’s a bit of a spoiler, but it was released during a lead-up promotion so I’m not worried about it, The Brotherhood of Evil Mutants is back. Xmen has been at its best when a group of mutants combat another group of mutants in a clash of ideology. The confrontation between the Xmen and the Brotherhood harkens back to what seems like a bygone era. Hopefully, this incarnation of the villainous team will remain relevant and impactful to the story for several future issues to come.
Perhaps the biggest change other than the feel and flow of the title is the feeling of direction. For the first time in nearly a decade, the Xmen feel like they have a direction and a purpose. For too long the Xmen have floated around directionless. They hoped from internal schisms, to becoming villains and fighting both the Avengers and Inhumans, to posting up in Limbo. The franchise felt like a secondary property, a cast aside lesser title that received little to no attention or long term story planning. I’m sure that isn’t the case and do not want to offend those who worked hard on the franchise during that time. However, the perception still exists. Now, it feels like that is abating.
Today I covered the positives. Check back tomorrow for some things I believe still need to change. Are you an Xmen fan who has been frustrated with the comic franchise? What’s your take on the new post ResurrXion direction?