Tag Archives: x-men: red

Preview: X-Men: Red #11

X-Men: Red #11

(W) Tom Taylor (A) Roge Antonia (CA) Jenny Frison
Rated T+
In Shops: Dec 12, 2018
SRP: $3.99

The X-Men have battled valiantly against their powerful psychic foe, Cassandra Nova, since the moment she framed Jean Grey for murder on the world stage. They have been hunted. They have been hated. And now…they can fight no more.

Preview: X-Men: Red #10

X-Men: Red #10

(W) Tom Taylor (A) Paolo Villanelli (CA) Jenny Frison
Rated T+
In Shops: Nov 07, 2018
SRP: $3.99

In the aftermath of a showdown between Jean Grey and Cassandra Nova, the rules have changed – and the battle is nowhere near over! It’s all hands on deck as the building wave of hatred against mutants crashes down on the X-Men!

Preview: X-Men: Red #9

X-Men: Red #9

(W) Tom Taylor (A) Roge Antonia (CA) Jenny Frison
Rated T+
In Shops: Oct 24, 2018
SRP: $3.99

• Following the shocking events of X-MEN RED #8, it’s time for Jean to finally confront her demon head-on.
• Jean Grey and Cassandra Nova… The showdown begins here!

Cosmic Ghost Rider Inspires Variant Covers in September

He took the world by storm when he made his debut in last year’s Thanos #13, and now Marvel is celebrating the Cosmic Ghost Rider with a series of special order all variant covers that feature Marvel’s breakout character battling different heroes of the Marvel Universe!

Look for Marvel’s Cosmic Ghost Rider order all variant covers on these select titles:

  1. Amazing Spider-Man #5 by Nick Bradshaw
  2. Amazing Spider-Man #6 by Paul Renaud
  3. Astonishing X-Men #15 by AKCHO
  4. Avengers #7 by Ema Lupacchino
  5. Avengers #8 by Mike McKone
  6. Black Panther #4 by Pasqual Ferry
  7. Captain America #3 by Patrick Zircher
  8. Deadpool #4 by Todd Nauck
  9. Doctor Strange #5 by Julian Totino Tedesco
  10. Fantastic Four #2 by Tom Raney
  11. Immortal Hulk #5 by RAHZZAH
  12. Immortal Hulk #6 by Brent Schoonover
  13. Sentry #4 by Vanesa Del Rey
  14. Thanos Legacy #1 by Dave Johnson
  15. Thor #5 by Ema Lupacchino
  16. Tony Stark: Iron Man #4 by David Nakayama
  17. Venom #6 by Humberto Ramos and Edgar Delgado
  18. Weapon H #7 by Chris Stevens
  19. X-23 #4 by Yasmine Putri
  20. X-Men Red #8 by Jamal Campbell

Don’t miss your chance to collect all 20 order all variant covers, coming to comic shops this September!

Review: X-Men: Red #5

X-Men: Red #5 showcases one of the new team’s more successful diplomatic rescue missions, as the intrigue surrounding Cassandra Nova’s nanite Sentinels continues. World Leaders around the globe as well unwitting humans are shown as targets in this issue, turned against their will into mutant hating drones attacking mutants both with legislation and mob violence. In a previous article I noted how X-Men: Red  presents a timely social commentary into some of the challenges we are facing. Writer Tom Taylor has clearly drawn some inspiration from the current racial divisions abjectly stoked by data analytics firm Cambridge Analytica.

We see another example of the talking-head, pundit-style news cycle in this issue addressing the mutant crisis. What I enjoyed the most of this was how this segment plainly showcased the use of bias, tunnel vision, word framing as well as dropped contexts. It’s unclear if the one-sidedness showcased by one of the reporters is due to his own prejudices or if he has become victim to Cassandra Nova’s Sentinites as well. This blurring line is definitely an unsettling one, and perhaps an intended theme of the story. This title’s emphasis on the promulgation of half truths, and the targeting of those with bias made me think about memes, and how their spread shapes culture. In this way, there’s an interesting parallel between both the targeted propaganda, and the function of the Sentinite, both are seemingly ephemeral, small but work towards a devastating and violent critical mass. 

It still remains to be seen what Cassandra Nova’s endgame is but her arrival presents the perfect foil to Jean Grey and by extension her mission. I have always understood Cassandra Nova, as a corrupter, a wraithlike entity who functions much like her chosen methods of attack in this series, behind the scenes and by dredging up the darkness is hidden within the best of us.   The overarching parallel of the parasite that encapsulates Cassandra, misinformation and her nano -Sentinels cannot be overlooked.

It is very nice to see Namor step up to the plate in this issue. The Anti-Mutant sentiment stoked by Nova’s machinations have caused a refugee exodus of Poland’s mutants, the X-Men go to assist on the shores of the Baltic sea, where Namor arrives prepared with equipment to ferry the mutants to new Mutant Nation Searebro. There’s a poignant moment where Namor flexes his diplomatic muscle, reminding assailing soldiers that if they want to keep using their current trade routes via the sea, they must allow the mutants to leave peacefully. The ensuing refugee crisis is quite symbolic.  Not too long ago it was the Atlanteans who were scattered across the globe and found refuge at the X-Men’s mutant national Utopia at the time.  I really respect that Namor has not forgotten his allies nor his heritage.  The change in circumstance  is definitely special and speaks to the X-Men strengths.  Where Cassandra’s power lies in division, a hallmark of the X-Men has always been creating friends from foes, and bridging divisions. We see this with Jean’s empathetic explanation to the human who was previously infected with the Sentinite as well as Jean’s vow to fight by weaponizing the truth. This team really shines with its humanitarian ethos, something I feel has been missing from the X-Men for some time. This title is quickly becoming a favorite in my pull list.

Some Final Thoughts

Jean Grey wants to fight with the truth, however, history may not be so kind in this regard. Namor’s recent run in with the Phoenix and his assault on Wakanda could stand to delegitimize his position and by extension the clemency he has given to the Fledgling mutant Nation.  The truth cuts both ways and it would be interesting to see how the team addresses this if it becomes a spoiler in future issues.

Going back to the theme of Cassandra’s corruption we have seen her undermine multiple mutant allies, Forge is the unwitting architect of the nano-sentinels in In X-Men Red Annual 1  we see a subplot involving Cassandra’s  weaponizing Rachel psychically. This raises questions about the exploits of the Gold team, (who are fighting a similar nano-sentinel threat) as well as Rachel’s recent powerups and inability to read Lydia Nance’s mind. It will be very interesting to see how this subplot pans out and if any of the nanite technology  is related across both X-Men titles.

Seeing Trinary with the team’s pet sentinel gave me goosebumps and I couldn’t pin down why until I had a mental flashback to Avengers Arena (The  Arcade’s hunger games themed murder fest of young heroes) Apex (the murderous technopath bears a striking similarity to Trinary, and it would be devastatingly delicious plot twist if there was some connection between the two, or if Cassandra made her an unwitting pawn as well

Story: Tom Taylor Art: Mahmud Asrar
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation Buy!

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Carmen Carnero Joins X-Men Red

Marvel has announced that this July, artist Carmen Carnero will join X-Men Red as the series’ regular artist alongside writer Tom Taylor. Carnero’s work for Marvel includes Superior Foes of Spider-Man, Cyclops, and The Punisher (where she holds the distinction of being the first female artist to ever draw the character’s ongoing series.)

Don’t miss Carmen’s debut in X-Men Red #6, available this July 18th at your local comic shop!

Marvel’s Answer to Cambridge Analytica, Musings on X-Men: Red

I’m a bit late to the party but I must say it is very good to see Jean Grey back in the realm of the living! The character brings this nostalgic warmth that has been missing in the X-Men for some time, and this warmth is reflected by her current mission and approach to mutant-human relations as seen in X-Men: Red.

We’ve seen multiple iterations of anti-mutant sentiment in the X-Universe. We’ve seen it in the form of an ancient bacteria, (John Sublime) hysteria borne from mutagenic viruses (i.e. the Legacy Virus and later Mpox) We’ve even seen it sourced and fueled from a telepathically empowered Nazi. (The Red Skull). The latest iteration of anti-mutant sentiment seems to take a page from the recent Cambridge Analytica scandal. With Jean Grey back among the living, the eminent telepath has set her sights on fixing the ills of the world she’s been away from for so long. This includes a plan hatched from a telepathic survey of the minds of humanitarians, and cultural influencers, as well as the formation of a new X-Men team.

Jean Grey’s resurrection is met with the return of a classic X-Men villain and the discovery of an elaborate social media campaign to stoke the fires of anti-mutant furor. The campaign’s target of individuals with known biases and its use of social media is a clear reference to the Cambridge Analytica operation, which sought to influence those with prejudiced proclivities with targeted advertising and fake news.  This is not the first time Marvel has used its stories to as social commentary on real-world issues. Back in 2009 in the lead up to the Utopia Storyline, Simon Trask advocated for Proposition X a proposal for a policy that would have forced mutants, to undergo mandatory birth control procedures. This mirrored the controversial proposition 8 in California that would have seen the LBGT community denied the right to Marriage.

I always enjoy when this art form uses its narrative to represent or pose solutions to real-world problems of this kind. Not only does this connect the reader to the protagonists, it cements the superhero genre as a medium of productive wish fulfillment. Jean’s Grey mission is very wide in its scope and returns an advocative flourish that has been missing from the X-Men for some time.  Whether her team’s mission succeeds or not, it will definitely provide an opportunity for learning and reflection. What I have always enjoyed about the X-Men franchise, is the flexibility of Mutanthood as a metaphor. The team’s recent recruit Trinary, is a South Asian, mutant, who uses her techno-digital manipulating powers to rectify the gender-based pay inequity in India. The fallout from this protest leads to her joining Jean Grey and her team. Trinary’s powers help to bring awareness of this social media campaign to the fledgling X-Men team and raises some interesting questions on how this current predicament will be fought going forward.

Who wouldn’t want to develop powers, to combat the spread of Banonism that has latched on the ever-present “Fear of the other” in the United States? Or to develop a telepathic insight into how mental laziness, propaganda, and malice feed into systematic violence and disenfranchisement? What is so beautiful about this current run, is how it eloquently uses the mutant metaphor, to ponder or creatively inspire holistic solutions to society’s most chronic ills. Instead of reacting the way we always do,  with offense and subsequent attack. (methods anticipated and desired by those driving such conflict) the story in X-Men Red encourages us to move forward with strength in other matters, using understanding and creativity to tackle or disrupt problems that always recur and takes new forms this is essentially the heart of Jean Grey’s mission and it will be inspiring as well as instructive to see how it pans out.  If you’re a fan of Jean Grey, or just want to see a nuanced and timely story addressing difference, fear, and conflict, this is a title that is definitely worthy of your attention.

Review: X-Men Red #4

XMENRED-1Jean Grey and her team of X-Men are trying to save the world…but one mutant could spoil that for everyone.  When an old friend of Jean’s is corrupted and turned against her, will Jean have to do the unthinkable?

Tom Taylor brings a little slower pace issue, but an important one as we see Jean’s team really coming together and their goal becoming even more crucial.  Cassandra Nova has always been one of those villains you love to hate; she really is just evil and will do anything to get her way, and doesn’t care about any casualties. This time around she’s found a way to turn people against mutants, whether they are aware of it or not. It’s an interesting take on “getting into people’s heads” and the scale at which she is deploying it will mean a lot of trouble for Jean and her team.

I’m also enjoying Mahmud Asrar‘s art in this book.  He really gives each character their own look and personality and really conveys their facial expressions really well.  I also have to give a nod to to the coloring by Rain Beredo. The colors just bring this great art to life, throwing the action right into your face and the full page panels really just make you stop to take it all in.

Overall, I’m really enjoying this title and liking the direction it’s headed in. I like the team line up (shout out to Trinary, a great new character) and really like seeing a character like Gentle become more then just a background player. And as I mentioned earlier, I’m really enjoying getting to hate Cassandra Nova again. Her plan is grand in scope and really presents a huge problem to Jean, her team and all mutants. It makes the book feel bigger, dealing with a globe of people being turned against mutants, instead of this usually being shown on a smaller scale.  I’m excited about this book and look forward to seeing where it will go next.

Story: Tom Taylor Art: Mahmud Asrar Colors: Rain Beredo
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.0 Overall: 8.0 Recommendation: Read

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: X-Men: Red #4

X-Men: Red #4

(W) Tom Taylor (A) Mahmud A. Asrar (CA) Travis Charest
Rated T+
In Shops: May 16, 2018
SRP: $3.99

• JEAN GREY and her team of X-Men are trying to save the world…but one mutant could spoil that for everyone.
• When an old friend of Jean’s is corrupted and turned against her, will Jean have to do the unthinkable?

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