Through three issues X-Force continues to improve and build on the promise of House of X. It’s one of my favorite Dawn of X titles, and issue three by Benjamin Percy and Joshua Cassarra did not disappoint!
Today on Krakin’ Krakoa #24 I’ll answer:
- How X-Force is the X-Men Dawn of X title most consistently fulfilling the promise of House of X
- What we’ve learned about the Death of Professor X
- The mystery of the 5th assassin!
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Issue 3 follows in the wake of the Reavers attack on Krakoa, and their successful assassination of Professor X (and destruction of his Cerebro headgear). Last issue also saw Wolverine and Quentin Quire discover the facility where the Reavers where horrifically holding a skinned and tortured Domino, using her mutant DNA in order to infiltrate the nation of Krakoa.
We now know this faction of anti-mutant terrorists is capturing and experimenting on a variety of mutants in order to implant themselves with cybernetic upgrades, which is very much in line with the Reavers we know and, well, hate.
I also have to call out the remarkably effective opening 9 panels in X-Force #3 where the creative team alternates close-ups of Domino’s torture and mission statement monologuing by “The Man with the Peacock Tattoo,” which for the record, is way less intimidating sounding than a Dragon Tattoo.
As Wolverine and Quentin are rescuing Domino from this horrific fate, the process of reviving the assassinated Professor is underway, primarily driven by Jean Grey and Beast.
Here we get Beast asking the question about the value of death in conversation with Jean Grey.
Jean answers everyone’s fears about taking the stakes out of X-Men comics:
“What I’m saying is without death life is less about me and more about us. The long game of mutantkind. That’s the dream of Krakoa.“
This is honestly the closest I’ve seen any of these – save a few hints here and there in the Hickman written issues – get to referencing the futures we’ve seen referenced in the pages of Powers of X and available to us via Moira’s lifelines.
The end result is the apparent resurrection and public announcement of Professor X’s return.
I say “apparent” because this all happens fairly quickly throughout the issue given the significance of the Professor’s role in making resurrection protocols and Cerebro backups tick. As Beast says “he’s all of us.”
So Professor X is back, but there’s a fair amount of doubt we see expressed implicitly and explicitly in this issue.
I appreciate Quentin challenging the “Kill No Humans” law of Krakoa – You have all these “villains” playing nice with X-Men but it’s down to Quentin to call out Professor X on still playing too nice.
Calling out Professor X’s mistakes seems especially relevant this issue, in both his return as if nothing went wrong (he even gets a cool sword from Magneto as a memento), and another glimpse into all the threats that remain to mutantkind, perhaps even from within Krakoa.
After a very effective and monstrous opener, the newly named XENO (all caps, all on-the-nose) has been relatively patient and clearly has nothing good planned.
The idea that XENO might have a sleeper agent on Krakoa should be terrifying to X-Men fans.
There’s also the possibility that all the awful bigots are effectively teaming up here given the language like “The shadows have gathered here” and “We are one and we are many.” I wonder if this is a combination of the likes of Reavers, Friends of Humanity, Purifiers ,etc.
All in all, I’m enjoying X-Force a great deal, and consider it the heart of Dawn of X!
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