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CSBG Archive

A Year of Cool Comics – Day 358

Here is the latest in our year-long look at one cool comic (whether it be a self-contained work, an ongoing comic or a run on a long-running title that featured multiple creative teams on it over the years) a day (in no particular order whatsoever)! Here‘s the archive of the comics posted so far!

We conclude the Cool Christmas Comic Countdown with the last issue of Uncanny X-Men by Chris Claremont, John Byrne and Terry Austin!


In this story, titled “Demons,” Kitty Pryde is feeling the blues on Christmas Eve because she is without her family for the holidays. She is keeping up with her X-Men studies, though, in an impressively subtle piece of foreshadowing…

As mentioned, this was the last issue John Byrne co-plotted on the book before he left the title, and you can tell the difference between Byrne X-Men and post-Byrne X-Men really well in this sequence featuring Wolverine…

Byrne’s Wolverine is just like that – a guy who could go off on his best friend without even thinking about it. Post-Byrne Wolverine was, well, a Samurai. Not saying one way is better than the other, just noting that it is a significant difference.

So anyways, Kitty is alone and she is attacked by a demon (who was last seen forty or so issues ago – helpfully recapped in the beginning of the issue)…

The rest of the issue shows Kitty thinking on her feet as she manages to survive the demon’s attacks, until she finally figures out a way to stop it, using her training from earlier in the day (if you haven’t read this issue, you might want to stop reading this piece now)…

Isn’t it striking how well-crafted that sequence is, right down to the hand popping out of the flames? SUCH a great job by John Byrne.

Of course, this being a holiday issue, things end happily as Kitty’s parents show up (it turns out Xavier was going to get them to surprise Kitty) and we get a nice coda to the book…

If you’re going to leave a comic, this is as good of a way to leave as any! A very good issue.


A definite nod to the Alien movie. I’m sure Ripley would’ve been proud of Kitty there. ;-)

This was one of the first “classic” X-Men issues that I ever read (being that I become aware of it as a multi-media franchise circa the early 90s) and it really made me a fan. I immediately started picking up back issues and the “X-Men: Classic” series they were running at the time.

Gotta love the lay-out of those panels during the chase sequence!

Hmmm, Scott mentioned this issue in his own column a few days ago – like I said in that comment thread, this one always evokes bittersweet memories for me. It’s such a good issue, but I remember how devastated I was as a young X-fanboy upon learning that it was Byrne’s last issue. . .
By the way, I definitely prefer this Wolverine to the post-Byrne samurai; I thought he was much better when he was a little bit crazy and he was just as liable to lash out at one of his own team-mates as against an enemy.

I knew this one would be in the mix. Nothing says “Christmas” like Claremont, Byrne, Kitty Pryde, and a demon.

Bah! I think I would have enjoyed Santa Doom more ;-) Merry Christmas Brian and thanks for putting all these together.

i remember the issue fondly espically where kitty proves how smart she is when she winds up having to bbque that little alien want to be plus the way she is smiling when she tells storm what happen. a nice way to end the holiday list.

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