I’m using my twitter a bit more and more (@psychodadcomics) so you can follow me there as I pick up new issues.

Let’s see…what’s new in geekdom?  Well, finally bought a hard copy of Star Wars Rogue One.  Finished season 12 of Supernatural on Netflix (holy crap that was a sad season finale).  And as I type this, I’m watching season 3 of the Flash (yeah…kind of behind on the times).

And now, a break from the impending Onslaught as I continue my X-Men books.

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 X-Men Unlimited #11 (June 1996)

Adrift
Artist:  Steve Epting & (Mike?) Miller; Writer:  Scott Lobdell & Terry Kavanagh

cover

In a small southern town, a woman and her child enter a Humanity’s Last Stand office.  Melody talks to a sleazy looking guy with a “vote Creed ’96” button on his shirt.  He offers her some coffee and she begins to tell her story…not of a mutant threat, but of a potential mutant threat…

That mutant threat is none other than Rogue, who is working at a restaurant in the same town, flirting with the guys (although more like they are trying to flirt with her) and charming the kids, and enjoying herself with her coworkers.  As she drives home, she notices a construction crew working…the same crew that’s been working night after night…and yet nothing’s getting done.  Rogue’s suspicious, but continues on “home”.  Her home is actually a house she’s been staying at with a mother and the mother’s child.  She waves at the kid through the window but instead of the normal wave, he shuts the curtains.  When Rogue steps inside, she finds Melody, sitting on Rogue’s bed, crying.  Melody admits that a week ago, she contacted some people.  She was worried about the Legacy Virus and the danger posed by mutants and she got scared.  Neither Rogue nor Melody were mad at one another.  In fact, Rogue understood her fear.  But before they could really get anywhere…

Rogue

Men in giant robotic suits break through the wall.  Rogue swiftly attacks them, tearing into them, unleashing her frustrations.  Outside, she dispatches the last but Melody comes running out, screaming that her son is still in the house.  She turns and finds Bastion (that’s right…THAT Bastion) with Melody’s son.  He points his gun at Melody and fires.  Rogue, as predicted, jumps in the path and is taken down instead.

Rogue wakes up, strapped to a mechanical device, listening to Bastion and a Mr. Trask discussing plans.  Trask, leaves at that point, though, and Bastion makes the same mistake all villains make…he gloats and reveals his plans.  His intent is to kill everybody at the H.L.S. complex and make it seem like it was mutants (specifically Rogue) and thus turn humanity against the mutants once and for all.  Of course, not all of the troops inside are too thrilled with this.  One complains and Bastion promptly shoots him in the head.  The other soldier has other ideas and with a simple gesture, the metals in the room go crazy, frying the computers and melting Rogue’s shackles. (gee…I wonder who that could be?)

Joseph
Meet Joseph…one of the worst ideas to come out of the House of X

The soldier reaches out to help Rogue to her feet, but without his helmet, Rogue immediately recognizes him as Magneto and attacks (who cares that it’s a younger Mags)!  She doesn’t let up, pummeling him has hard as she can, despite his protests that he’s not Magneto (he’s calling himself Joseph).  Finally he restrains her to allow him to protest once more that he is not the man she believes him to be.  After one last kick to his jaw (just cause you gotta let out frustrations) she agrees to take him at his word…until he shows otherwise.

Two two tear into the rest of Humanity’s Last Stand, knocking down the soldiers in mech suits, destroying a large tank, making life generally difficult for the baddies.  After the battle, Rogue congratulates “Joseph” on a well fought battle, but he isn’t having any of it.  Apparently Joseph’s a bit of a pacifist and doesn’t take delight even beating up militarized racists.

Joseph 2

Their little heart to heart get interrupted by the townsfolk, pointing weapons at the two.  Joseph easily disarms them and he and Rogue fly off to land a short distance away, where they have a little heart to heart about who Joseph used to be (and why it doesn’t really matter if he’s been given a second chance).

Their heart to heart gets interrupted AGAIN (these bad guys have NO consideration) by an attack helicopter.  However, when it shoots a couple missiles at the mutants, Joseph grabs them from the air.  And after a minute where he deliberates how to respond, he detonates the missiles, blinding the helicopter crew and seemingly obliterating both him and Rogue.

Joseph 3

Of course, they didn’t die.  Rogue returns to Melody’s broken house to gather her things and her car.  But as she leaves, Melody and her son greet them.  Melody apologizes and her son goes to Rogue and says goodbye.  He can’t hug her…but he would if he could.

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So…  X-Men Unlimited are often very hit and miss with me.  The art is often all over the place and since they often try to focus on a handful of characters, sometimes you get characters you don’t really care about.  And I’ve never liked Joseph.  It was even worse when we got his backstory, but as a character, I hated him.  There was no depth to him, and the coping with his “past” just is…corny, I guess.  I just never liked him.  Magneto was better as a villain or at least an anti-hero.  Not as someone who does good all the time.

And as much as I’ll by lynched for this opinion, Rogue hasn’t been one of my favorite characters in a long time.  Pretty much since X-Men #4 (the one by Jim Lee) because ever since then, it seemed like she was only ever written as a love interest for Gambit.  I mean sure, there were occasions where she would have to deal with not touching anybody, but that was always in relation to Gambit.  So after Claremont left, I just never cared for Rogue.  at least not during this time of comics (don’t worry, I liked her later on).

Rogue 2
just because I like seeing Joseph beat on…

And so between Joseph and Rogue, I didn’t care for this story.  On top of that, I didn’t care for Rogue’s whole road trip or their romance/friendship (whatever you want to call it).

The art of this issue is also kind of here and there.  Steve Epting is awesome as always, but Miller (I’m not sure if it’s Mike Miller…that’s what I found online but even that source listed it as a ?) does some of the pages, including most of the battle, and his work is just…awkward maybe?  I didn’t care for it.

But hey…let it never be said I’ll skip issues just because they aren’t worthwhile.

 

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