Axel-In-Charge: Extending "Secret Wars," Excitement for a "Totally Awesome Hulk"
In honor of the fiftieth anniversary of the X-Men, we’re doing a poll of the greatest X-Men stories of all-time! You all voted, now here are the results of what you chose as the 50 Greatest X-Men Stories!
We’ll do five each day from here on out (until we get towards the end, when it’ll probably get down to 3 a day). Here is a master list of every story featured so far. Here are #15-11.
15. “Fatal Attractions” (X-Factor #92, X-Force #25, Uncanny X-Men #304, X-Men #25, Wolverine #75 and Excalibur #71)
Oddly enough, this crossover for the X-Men’s 30th Anniversary was the very first one that encompassed EVERY X-title, as Excalibur and Wolverine had to this point not yet been directly involved in major X-Men crossovers (Excalibur had an Inferno tie-in, but not directly tied into the main storyline). Five of the six titles were written by Scott Lobdell and Fabian Nicieza, with only Larry Hama (writer of Wolverine #75) being the exception. The storyline began with two prelude issues, X-Factor and X-Force, which established that someone mysterious is creating a haven for mutants and the seemingly dead Magneto’s Acolytes are in charge of it all. In Uncanny X-Men #304, though, Magneto reveals himself to be alive during Illyana Rasputin’s funeral (tacky!) and about to wage a war upon humanity, basically the same “out of character” things he did during Planet X. He offers to let any of the X-Men join him. Colossus decides to join Magneto’s team. The world decides to act against Magneto first by using the Magneto Protocols, which creates a force field around the Earth. Magneto then destroys the force field, which messes with the world’s electromagnetic field and causes major damage on Earth. Professor X thinks that this is enough, so he leads a small team of X-Men into Magneto’s outer space base to take care of things. Magneto captures them, though, and in a fit of rage, tears the adamantium out of Wolverine’s body, nearly killing him. Xavier flips out and mind-wipes Magneto. The X-Men then save their teammate and discover that Wolverine has bone claws! Finally, in the last part (basically an epilogue), the X-Men cure Colossus of a brain injury that they think causes his defection. He still decides to remain with Magneto, if only to keep an eye on him.
14. “Fall of the Mutants” (The Uncanny X-Men #225–227, X-Factor #24-26, and The New Mutants #59-61)
Fall of the Mutants is a rare storyline in that the three stories that make up the crossover never actually intersect. In the X-Factor one, they deal with Angel being turned into Death by Apocalypse by being given metal wings (he fights Apocalypse’s control and becomes the dark but heroic Archangel). The New Mutants suffer a great tragedy when Cypher is killed protecting his teammate, Wolfsbane. Magneto, the headmaster of the New Mutants, flips out and blames humanity for the death of Cypher. The New Mutants decide to leave the school and go off on their own. Finally, the X-Men are caught in a battle in Dallas with first Freedom Force and then with the evil magical being Adversary. Ultimately, the X-Men must sacrifice themselves to stop the Adversary. As it turns out, though, the magical being Roma saved the X-Men and the world just THINKS that they are dead. They are now also invisible to cameras and machines so that they can continue doing good while the world thinks that they are dead. Chris Claremont and Louis Simonson wrote the storyline and Marc Silvestri, Bret Blevins and Walter Simonson did the pencils for it.
13. “Asgardian Wars” (X-Men and Alpha Flight #1-2, New Mutants Special Edition #1 and X-Men Annual #9)
After first manipulating X-Men and Alpha Flight into accepting a gift of special powers in the X-Men and Alpha Flight mini-series by Chris Claremont and Paul Smith (that mini also saw Rachel Summers freak out when she learned that her father and his new wife were expecting a baby BOY), Loki decided to try a new approach with the X-Men. His plan was to manipulate Storm into becoming a new Goddess of Thunder. So he kidnapped Storm and the New Mutants. However, since he didn’t want anything to do with the New Mutants, he gave them to the Enchantress. Magik tried to teleport her and friends to safety but her powers clashed with the Enchantress’ and instead the New Mutants were strewn about Asgard. The various New Mutants encountered differing challenges, with the most notable being Dani Moonstar becoming a Valkyrie. Meanwhile, eventually the X-Men learned where their friends were so they came to Asgard just in time to see Storm crowned the new Goddess of Thunder. Can the X-Men convince their friend to return to sanity? Can the X-Men even convince all of their New Mutant friends to return to Earth? Will all of them even LIVE through it all? Chris Claremont and Art Adams (doing some of the most famous work of his career) were the creative team on this story.
12. “Messiah Complex” (X-Men: Messiah CompleX”, Uncanny X-Men #492-494, X-Men #205-207, New X-Men #44-46 and X-Factor #25-27)
After the events of Decimation, there were no more mutants born…until suddenly a young mutant baby was born in Alaska! This young baby found herself at the center of a war between Mister Sinister and the Marauders (who had secretly infiltrated Rogue’s X-Men team), who want the baby for Sinister’s…you know, sinister purposes, the Church of Humanity, who want to slaughter the kid and the X-Men, who view the baby as sort of their messiah. However, as it turns out, Bishop remembers a story about this baby from when he was a kid. She is the cause for his dystopic future. So essentially he asks himself “Would you kill Hitler if you went back in time to when he was a baby?” And he answers, “Yes.” Of course, he does a terrible job of it, instead shooting Professor X in the head. Hope escapes to the future with Cable, but at least she survives! This crossover was written by Ed Brubaker, Mike Carey, Peter David, Craig Kyle and Christopher Yost with pencils by Marc Silvestri, Billy Tan, Scot Eaton, Humberto Ramos and Chris Bachalo
11. “Inferno” (New Mutants #71-73, Uncanny X-Men #239-243, X-Factor #35-39 and a ton of other issues)
Inferno was the third crossover between the then-three X-titles and it was the first one that became a company-wide crossover. The demons S’ym and N’astirh trick Magik by first capturing her and the New Mutants during one of their stopovers in Limbo and then convincing her to embrace her demonic side and open a portal from Limbo to New York City to free her teammates. Nastirh then use a special device to keep the portal open and the demons then essentially invade Earth. This demonic invasion served as the backdrop of the company-wide crossover as all the other heroes of New York have to deal with the invasion. Meanwhile, N’astirh cuts a deal with Madelyne Pryor where she helps him with his invasion if he helps her find her kidnapped son, Nathan (Mister Sinister kidnapped him). The X-Men and New Mutants stop the invasion but Madelyne still has Nathan, so the X-Men and X-Factor team-up to stop Madelyne, now known as the Goblyn Queen. We learn that Madelyne definitively is a clone of Jean Grey and when she dies, Jean Grey gets all of her memories. The X-Men and X-Factor track down Mister Sinister and Cyclops seemingly kills him. This story was the first time that the X-Men and X-Factor had met up with each other after the creation of X-Factor.
Please, no guessing in the comments section as to what the top ten will entail!
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