Summer's Reviews > Essential X-Men, Vol. 8

Essential X-Men, Vol. 8 by Chris Claremont
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Hoo boy. I love the X-Men, and I love Excalibur from this era, but this book roundly bites. The "Siege Perilous" plot device is awfully stupid, especially since the Marvel Universe *already* used a *different* Siege Perilous in Captain Britain (and it made sense that time - it was a mystic portal that transformed Brian Braddock into the defender of the British isles, not some sort of dumb jewlery that made superheroes invisible to cameras or whatever). Magical themes don't work well in the X-Men storyline, and their useless relocation to the Australian outback completely negates the more interesting parts of the book - the mutants' struggle with modern society and with the idea of humanity.

Actually, I think this is my least favorite team line-up, too. Longshot and Dazzler are terrible characters, I hate Colossus, Rogue is irritating, Psylocke's okay, but otherwise uninteresting, Storm seems strangely flat with the return of her powers, and only Wolverine keeps my interest. It's good to know that Longshot and Dazzler disappear soon, only to be replaced by better versions of themselves, Gambit and Jubilee. That's right, I said that Gambit is *better* than someone. I hate Longshot *that much*.

The Genosha storyline was okay, though.
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Chris Anyone, ANYONE is better than Longshot. He has four fingers. He has a flashing eye (not that the X-Men didn't over-use THAT visual). He has hollow bones. He has the super-power of being "lucky" that is powered by his "pure intentions" -- gag, its Super Pollyanna, but with a bad cock-rock mullet from Mojo World, one of the STUPIDEST side-plots in the X-verse. And don't even get me started on the music-powered disco-skank . . . Dazzler was so supposed to be one of those throw-away lame-ass marvel characters who somehow got a staring role in a major team. And the main villain is Mr. Sinister! I'm sorry, but that name should have been left in the Golden Era where it belongs.

I also love how Gateway allows Claremont to negate the fact that they live in the Australian outback whenever its convenient, and how they also manage to get in knock-down, drag-out fights in major cities without anyone going "Hey! It's the X-Men!" The world thinks they're dead and they can't even tell their FAMILIES, for god's sake (that would blow their cover!) but they can duke it out with the Marauder's up and down Broadway. Not only is the line up lame, but Claremont is so lazy (or overworked), just cobbling together crap that his task-masters knew they could feed to gullible teens.


Summer Yeah, every time I think about how much people hate Claremont, I think: why? he wrote such great X-Men issues! And then I remember that he also wrote such horrible, terrible, very bad X-Men issues as well. And don't forget how everyone ~falls in love with Longshot~ because he's soooo dreamy!

However, I'm with you in the "still can't stop reading old X-Men comics".


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