Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Uncanny X-Men #18 (HERE BE SPOILERS!)

This issue is difficult to describe.  It's essentially a stream-of-consciousness journey through the last few weeks of Cyclops' life, focused particularly on the arrival of the original X-Men and Kitty to the Weapon X facility (and inspired by the discovery that they've been taken by the Shi'ar).  Bendis does a great job of showing how isolated Cyclops feels and leaves you with a sense that said isolation is slowly driving him insane.  Rudy is an inspired choice as the artist, because he really manages to convey Cyclops' internal sense of chaos.  Kitty and Scott's confrontation over Charles Xavier is obviously the highlight, particularly Kitty mentioning that they haven't had a chance to mourn him yet.  It's hard to tell time in comics, but Bendis uses this moment to remind us that it's only been a few months (if that) since Scott killed Xavier.  Moreover, Bendis and Rudy remind us that this grief and isolation is still denying Scott the use of his powers.  We've seen some hope that a reconciliation between the two sides is coming, and, after this issue, I wouldn't be surprised if it happened because a broken Scott appears on Logan's doorstep asking for help.  Bendis hints at that outcome with Scott's treatment of Hijack.  He expels him after one infraction because he's a man trying to live by these rules as a way to impose order into the chaos of his life.  When he realizes that these rules still don't help imposed said order (like when your younger self gets kidnapped by aliens and you're so isolated that former friends won't help you), the house of cards is going to crumble.

**** (four of five stars)

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