Marvel took C2e2 2019 by storm with the in-person announcement that writer Jonathan Hickman is returning to the publisher to write two congruent X-Men series. From 2008 to 2015, Hickman stood out as one of the best Marvel Universe writers, delivering impressive work across titles like Fantastic Four, Avengers, and the 2015 Secret Wars event (among others!).
Since Secret Wars, Hickman’s been focused on excellent creator-owned work with Image (books such as East of West and The Black Monday Murders), and Marvel’s been struggling to regain their footing. The promise of the writer’s return to an X-Men franchise that has also seen vast inconsistency throughout the 2010’s is an immensely satisfying prospect for fans of either.
Intriguingly, in pre-release hype Marvel has celebrated four distinct major eras of X-Men since Uncanny X-Men debuted in 1963: Giant Size X-Men #1 (1975), X-Men #1 (1991), Age of Apocalypse, New X-Men. The implication is that Hickman’s two series – House of X and Powers of X – will be the beginning of the 5th era.
Below you’ll find a complete guide to the X-Men comics of Jonathan Hickman, as well as connected prelude and tie-in issues that help explain the story.
Related Reading Orders:
Road to Hickman’s X-Men
In interviews (including a brief C2E2 chat with yours truly), Hickman is quick to laud Morrison’s work with praise, from Marvel Boy to New X-Men. It should not come as a surprise if his X-Men comics treat the New X-Men era with a degree of reverence.
Indeed, Hickman’s already pulled from Morrison’s lofty ideas, including the concept of the “phoenix egg” in his “Time Runs Out” build through to Secret Wars.
Speaking of massive, ambitious all-time great runs in Marvel history, Hickman’s run from 2008 to 2015 across the Marvel Universe stands as my favorite modern sequence of comics in Marvel.
Of particular interest, I’ve also dissected how Hickman wrote specific X-Men characters and concepts, and what we might expect moving forward given this history.
Marvel made much ado over the ($7.99) 2018 release of a new Uncanny X-Men #1, and the series ran weekly for the first 10 issues/weeks. While those ten issues do set the stage for a clear break that happens in Uncanny X-Men #11, they’re most focused on driving to the Age of X-Man event.
So, yes, long time X-Men fans can read the entire series, but purely for the purposes of a road to Hickman’s X-Men, I’d argue you can start with Matthew Rosenberg’s time writing the run solo from UXM #11 on.
Uncanny X-Men #22 is scheduled for release July 17, 2019, and is set to conclude this series of Uncanny (which began all the way back in the long ago known as 2018). The first issue of House of X will release the following week.
Hickman on X-Men Checklist
Collects: House of X #1 to #6, Powers of X #1 to #6
This is the collected edition – Full issue by issue breakdown below.
House of X and Powers of X Reading Order
The House of X / Powers of X duology has been so fun, I’ve started a video series called “Krakin’ Krakoa” where I provide background, history, and just overall enthusiasm for the events of the comic.
The series starts here with a history of Professor Charles Xavier prior to House of X #1. From this point forward I’ll just list the next entry in the video series by number, so those of you looking to avoid any possible spoilers can do so here!
You can find my exploration of some stand-out references to past Hickman comics in Krakin Krakoa: Secrets of House of X!
Krakin’ Krakoa #3 also goes with House of X #2.
For my video background, check out Krakin’ Krakoa #4!
Video companion via Krakin’ Krakoa #5!
Video companion via Krakin’ Krakoa #7!
Just the single page story by Hickman and Dustin Weaver about Apocalypse and his four horsemen!
Video companion via Krakin’ Krakoa #6!
Video companion via Krakin’ Krakoa #8!
Video companion via Krakin’ Krakoa #9!
Video companion via Krakin’ Krakoa #10!
Video companion via Krakin’ Krakoa #12!
After HoX & PoX… Dawn of X Trade Reading Order!
You should know that Marvel is collecting (at least) the first six issues of the new comics in the X-Men line known as Dawn of X two ways. First, there’s your traditional series trade paperback where the first six issues of X-Men comics will all be collected (for example). Less traditionally, there are also hardcover collections called “Dawn of X Volume One” and so on, that collect only the first issue of each of the six Dawn of X titles, then only the second issue of each, and so on.
Now, there’s been a lot of debate as to the merit of reading every comic in the Dawn of X. There is some continuity overlap, and in that regard, I’d encourage fans of House of X read at least the first two issues of the six launch titles (all listed below in the issue by issue order!) to see which books you enjoy the most. From there, it’s really down to personal preference, and I’d advise sticking with the books that do it for you. For the completists like myself, though, those Dawn of X collections may seem awfully tempting.
Collects: X-Men #1 To #6
Collects: Marauders (2019) #1-6
Collects: X-Force (2019) 1-6
Collects: Excalibur (2019) 1-6
Collects: New Mutants 1-6
Collects: Fallen Angels (2019) 1-6
Collects: X-Men (2019) 7-11
Collects: New Mutants (2019) 7-12
Collects: X-Force (2019) 7-12
Collects: X-Men/Fantastic Four (2020) 1-4
Collects: Marauders (2019) 7-11
Collects: Excalibur (2019) 7-11
Dawn of X Hardcover Collections
Collects: X-Men (2019) #1, X-Force (2019) #1, Marauders #1, Excalibur (2019) #1, Fallen Angels (2019) #1 And New Mutants (2019) #1
Collects: X-Men (2019) #2, X-Force (2019) #2, Marauders #2, Excalibur (2019) #2, Fallen Angels (2019) #2 And New Mutants (2019) #2
Collects: X-Men (2019) #3, X-Force (2019) #3, Marauders #3, Excalibur (2019) #3, Fallen Angels (2019) #3 And New Mutants (2019) #3
Collects: X-Men (2019) #4, X-Force (2019) #4, Marauders #4, Excalibur (2019) #4, Fallen Angels (2019) #4 And New Mutants (2019) #4
Collects: X-Men (2019) #5, X-Force (2019) #5, Marauders #5, Excalibur (2019) #5, Fallen Angels (2019) #5 And New Mutants (2019) #5
Collects: X-Men (2019) 6, X-Force (2019) 6, Marauders 6, Excalibur (2019) 6, Fallen Angels (2019) 6 And New Mutants (2019) 6
Issue by Issue Dawn of X Checklist
There’s a short story in this Marvel preview/murder mystery by Hickman, RB Silva and Marte Garcia, featuring Mister Sinister. Well worth the read, and for the teaser it contains for X-Men/Fantastic Four.
A non “Dawn of X” comic that nonetheless features Krakoa, Wolverine, and Quentin Quire. Story by Leah Williams and David Baldeon who will go on to produce X-Factor in the DoX. This mini will read best if you read all 5 issues (and frankly, a fair amount of Gwenpool before that!), and it’s a really effective series closer.
Includes short stories featuring a handful of X-Men, set during the Krakoa era. Vita Ayala and Bernard Chang tackle a Forge story, and most notably for me, the Bitter Root creative team delivers a Wolverine and Hulk story!
Given the Marauders involvement in this series, I’d recommend reading prior to Marauders #6, even though this issue was published alongside Marauders #7.
Like X/FF above, Wolverine is a Dawn of X wave 2 series addition that makes more sense earlier in the reading order than its release date would place it (the comic was released the same week as Marauders #8 and New Mutants #7).
Technically, I’d argue you could place Wolverine #1 before even X-Force #1 at the start of the Dawn of X. If the rest of the story plays out in that same timeframe I may adjust accordingly!
Ok, this is a stretch, but there are thematic and literal connections to the Dawn of X in this oddball one-shot that diehards may find interesting. First off, the entire premise is tied to Weapon Plus, which is the expansion of the Weapon X program that originates during Morrison’s New X-Men. Second, Man-Slaughter (they weaponized a Man-Thing!) is actually very tied to sci-fi themes writer Benjamin Percy explores in X-Force #6. And finally, the back-up story about Brute Force (which was an actual Marvel miniseries and is blowing my mind) mentions the Orchis program!
Doctor Strange makes a cameo on Krakoa
This issue was released much later, but should be read chronologically before the “Giant-Size X-Men” series starts. Deadpool busts into Krakoa!
Not super essential, but Wolverine teams up with Felicia, and they occasionally talk Krakoa. Kris Anka’s art slays.
I debated including this issue, but there’s a huge tease in this story that could have major ramifications for the X-Men. Keep in mind that unless you’ve been keeping up with Jason Aaron and Ed McGuinness’ run on Avengers since “Marvel Fresh Start,” 66% of this story won’t seem relevant!
My review! Please note the FCBD special is very much a lead-in to the X of Swords event, and will be accounted for in that reading order as well!
Technically an Empyre tie-in, although this one is way more focused on X-Men. My review!
The events of X-Men #11 seem to occur more or less simultaneously with the Empyre X-Men miniseries. It was published after all 4 issues were released, so I’ve included here.
This Empyre post-mortem kicks off with a really good conversation between Jen Walters and Wolverine. Note that the issue will reference the events of the first Donny Cates and Nic Klein arc on Thor, and as you should expect, it will mean a lot more if you’re caught up on Al Ewing’s Immortal Hulk (and you really should be!).
Placement of this 5 issue Jugs mini is flexible, as is the initial relevance to the X-Men’s big picture! Still, a pretty enjoyable series if you like Juggernaut.
Dani Moonstar, Rahne Sinclair, and Silver Fox stories!
Jason Aaron’s Avengers is building to a Phoenix story, which means the X-Men aren’t far. There’s a short tease involving Wolverine and Jean Grey at issue’s end.
Gerry Duggan brings Wolverine and Magik into his savage story, with supernatural implications that might tie into the Dawn of X down the road. I expect this should occur before X of Swords, but otherwise timing fairly flexible.
Everything Is X of Swords!
Some updates for Franklin Richards.