Storm Arcana

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Storm Sunday: The Fall of the Mutants

wmutantmassIn 1987 Marvel had their X-titles (at the time this was Uncanny X-Men, New Mutants and X-Factor;  yeah, only three!  Hard to imagine in this day and age of franchises and properties) share a “Fall of the Mutants” banner (The above image was the advertisment for the event and drawn by Alan Davis).  The three titles didn’t actually crossover with each other, but they all shared a common thematic intention of shaking the individual teams up a bit and had their own separate storylines.

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Uncanny X-Men finally saw Storm finding resolution for her power loss (You read Lifedeath like I recommended, right?) and creating the team I am most fond of in X-Men history that would be known later as The Outback X-Men (consisting of Storm, Dazzler, Psylocke, Rogue, Longshot, Havok, Colossus, Wolverine and tagalong Madelyne Pryor).  X-Men fans were also treated to amazing artwork by superstar Marc Silvestri.  A fun adventure in fashion sees Storm regaining her powers while sporting a Native American ensemble with her ex, the newly buff and shamanic spell-casting inventor Forge (as you can see in the image above).  Forge finds his past has caught up with him and the X-Men pay the price with their lives (well, sorta kinda).  The pointed eared lady is Roma and she bends magic rules to help out our favorite mutants.  

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New Mutants broke my heart as one of my favorite characters died saving the life of a character for whom I’ve never had any sort of affinity.  Not to mention that it featured some of the worst characters in New Mutants history (The Right, Ani-mator, Bird Brain) in a The Island of Dr. Moreau storyline rip-off.  I also found Bret Blevins‘ artwork too cartoonish for the themes and violence depicted in this particular storyline.  However, as you can see from the above image, Blevins’ version of Magik is pretty sweet, somehow looking cute and formidable at the same time.    

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X-Factor brought a character back from the dead in an incarnation that is still recurring in the pages of the X-titles today (check out recent issues of X-Force).  This was really hard for me as a reader back then because I shed some real tears after reading issue #15 in which said character died as a result of injuries from the Mutant Massacre crossover.  This character is also one of my top five favorite characters ever and a part of me wishes he had really died than be brought back as he was.  The villain of this storyline is not one of my favorites (not even close) but his longevity has endured somehow and he pops up every now and then in spite of his repeated failures.  Survival of the fittest?  Kinda questionable if you ask me.  At least this comic had Walt Simonson‘s artwork going for it (as seen above)!    

uncanny2251Cover art by Marc Silvestri.  One of the characters on the right does something dastardly to a character on the left involving a face mask, some magick and a knife.  You gotta see it!  Go read “Fall of the Mutants” now!

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2 Comments

  1. stirling snow

    i’m with ya, man. the great eight, outback x-men – always be my favorite. thanks.

  2. Ingonyama

    The Outback X-Men were one of the most original and creative superhero teams I’ve ever laid eyes on. They introduced me to Psylocke (before the Ninja Bimbo Suit) and the Non-Disco Dazzler, and made me see Havok as more than just “The Summers Brother Who Couldn’t.” Storm had her hair and her powers back, Colossus was back, Rogue was single, Madelyne Pryor was coming into her own as a character, and all was right with the world.

    I knew it couldn’t last, but I still have happy memories of that period. I wonder what would have happened had it been allowed to continue without any editorial interference? Would Gateway have been the new Professor X? Would Logan and Ororo have hooked up for real? Would Psylocke have given Rogue the handle on her powers she so desperately needed?

    I’d love to see an alternate continuity where the Outback team stuck around.

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