What's going on here? Picking up the most recent two issues of Marvel's flagship X-Men title after a year or so away from it, I'm having trouble figuring out what's going on. While there's a catch-up page at the start of most Marvel titles right now (This can only be a good thing for casual and lapsed readers), it still leaves you with something of a 'Whu?' feeling. Nightcrawler's DEAD? Who is this 'Hope' character? Hmm.
Reading these two issues has been like a game of catch up for me. I find it a little odd that the 'central' X-characters of Wolverine, Emma Frost, Cyclops etc seem to be taking a back seat so that the new generation of X-men can shine. uh, this was also attempted a couple of years back and didn't work that great. I do like the direction these issues are taking though, with new mutants appearing around the world following on from the catastrophic events a while back that left all but 198 of the world's mutants powerless.
It seems that the X-Men universe is still enjoying playing with time travel, with Hope being from the future, which is something the title's been doing for decades now, so I guess that's one thing that's the same. What the hell happened to Kitty Pryde? Why is she a ghost in a tube? Erm... I'm gonna have to do some catching up.
The art is mostly great, but there are a few panels here and there that look rather rushed. The scripts are strong, but needlessly complicated and canon-heavy. I guess it's because I've come back on as a lapsed reader more than anything, but I didn't get much of a connection to these issues. That said, issue 526 has a brilliant back-up story featuring Magneto as he and the X-Men rebuild the X-mansion. That little story has some wonderful foreshadowing to the script, and is drawn beautifully. Niggles aside, I'm going to stick around a while longer and see if I can figure out what's going on.
UNCANNY X-MEN 526 7/10
UNCANNY X-MEN 527 6/10