The Dream X-Men Team

Man, I love me some X-Men. I grabbed my first issue back in 1994 and was hooked from there: indulging myself in the world of X ever since. I’ve watched many teams break up, reform, or take turns becoming “Uncanny” in various ways. I’ve seen X-Men both die and come back to life, join other non-X-related teams like the Avengers, or became enemies against their friends. It’s been a wild ride.

Author Kelly Thompson recently retweeted a link from Comics Alliance which featured an X-Men Fantasy Draft. While some of the teams are great (like Katie’s and Aaron’s choices), I thought I should probably showcase my own.

While there’s well-over 300 X-Men to choose from, I’m going to limit myself to ten. I know the folks over at CA capped it at 8, but I’m making my own rules. And now, in no particular order:

moonstar1. Mirage (Danielle Moonstar)
Part of me hates that I have to explain why I’ve chosen Moonstar when I know she speaks for herself. Not only is she a quality leader, she’s still a complete bad ass even without her powers. On more than one occasion has Moonstar been the voice of reason, keeping her calm and head in the game when things get rough around her. She seems to always be there for someone even when her own life seems to be in shambles. Empathetic, compassionate, and yet still tough as nails, easily proven when she took on Hela herself. A natural, gifted, and talented member – an obvious choice to be on the team.

2. Archangel (Warren Worthington III)
For the record, I’m referring to the original Worthington, not the new one brought up through time travel (like I said, it’s been a wild ride). I’ve always had a soft spot for Worthington as he’s not only an emotional basketcase that I have sympathy for, but also still clear in mind to help his friends when needed. Despite turning against his friends time and time again, his heart (and fortune) is always in the right place.

warren_worthington_iii_earth-616_0033

One of the original five X-Men, Archangel has always been a background character of sorts. While his powers of flight aren’t as aggressive as Cyclops’ optic blasts or Wolverine’s claws, they keep him cautious and clear headed in action. That is, unless the Archangel takes over. . .

monet3. M (Monet St. Croix)
I’m always a big fan of confidence. M oozes it. Her confidence is backed by her mutant powers of strength, flight, healing powers, and telepathy – essentially “perfection.” She’s a super-smart one-woman show who, as I once reviewed, doesn’t take crap from anyone. Originally with the Generation X team, she later grouped with X-Factor to showcase her investigative side and how she works in more intimate, adult groups. My only beef with having her on the team is that a lot of the other members would have a hard time putting up with her attitude. While it’s not usually warranted, it makes for some great stories.

4. Chamber (Jonothon Starsmore)chamber

Another character originating from Generation X, Chamber has always struck me as a tortured soul – unable to eat, breathe, and speak like a normal human, Chamber’s lower jaw was destroyed by his mutant powers when they first manifested. The energy that flows within his jaw can be controlled, giving him immense power and making him a formidable X-Man.

I first really understood Chamber when picking up Uncanny X-Men #395 (which also features a great X-Men roster) and reading his development as a character. I grew attached to him from there and been a big fan of his ever since.

5. Multiple Man (Jamie Madrox)mm

If I am ever given the chance to write an X-book (Marvel, are you there?), I would NOT use Jamie Madrox. This is simply because I believe he is author Peter David’s character. David’s work on the Multiple Man over his long run of X-Factor showcases character development and dedication to both a story and character arc. Multiple Man always struck me as Joss Whedon’s Captain Malcolm Reynolds from Firefly before Firefly was even a thing. Madrox’s humour, strength, tenacity, and struggle with leadership makes him the most human person on the team. But, oh man, his powers would be so freakin’ useful. (And once upon a time I went as Multiple Man for Halloween).

6. Domino (Neena Thurman)

dominoFor the uninitiated, Domino may seem like the mutant version of Black Widow – but with a luck on her side. Quite literally. Domino’s powers of shifting the odds in her favour not only make her a terrifying force to be reckoned with, but a incredible asset to any team. Originating in X-Force, and then later in a new X-Force, only to be put into another X-Force after that, Domino knows a thing or two about sneaking around, combat, and making stealth a priority.

While some of her snarky attitude and over-confidence may mirror M’s, Domino knows when to duck out if things get too dicey. She’s experienced, tough, and yet will stick to her guns (literally, too) if something doesn’t seem right. It also helps that she’s also worked with my next pick!

7. Boom-Boom (Tabitha Smith)boomboom

If your idea of Jubilee comes from any of the X-Men cartoons or movies, think of her near-opposite and you have Boom-Boom. While Jubilee was the hip teenager who wanted to go to the arcade and chew bubblegum, Boom-Boom was out hunting for boys and blowing stuff up. Her mutant power – creating ticking time bombs made out of plasma energy – can explode with great force. While working with both X-Force and X-Factor, she has never really been written as a fully-matured character. While that may be a turn off for some folks putting together a team, Boom-Boom still has it where it counts and her light-hearted attitude and spirit would make for easing tension and energizing the group.

8. Fantomex (Jean-Phillipe/Charlie Cluster-7)

fantomexOne-part James Bond, one-part Wolverine. One-part three brains. What.

Fantomex is a creative secret agent out of the Weapon Plus program that uses his powers for confusion and escape more than anything. If there’s one thing that Fantomex does do, however, is make himself look good to others by getting the job done. Whether it be him single-handedly saving Uncanny X-Force from the Horsemen of the Apocalypse, or managing to make The World work in his favour, Fantomex’s bag of tricks seem to be limitless as he (and trusty E.V.A.) are a tag-team of terror. Fantomex’s only real challenge being on the team is my next choice. . .

9. Psylocke (Elizabeth Braddock)psylocke

Psylocke is a character which many authors struggled to understand (and even more artists struggle to draw properly). Explaining her origin would take longer than what you’ve read here so far, so let me leave you with who she is: a psychic ninja assassin with more baggage than most people. One would think that being on another team with two men she has dated (Archangel and Fantomex) would mean trouble – and you know, it probably would. But she doesn’t let things linger or bother her for long – pushing emotions aside to finish the mission. Psylocke has been a tremendous force in the X-Men for many years – her devotion to the team and making things right is part of her moral code. The soft-spoken ninja never needs to prove herself because she lets her actions do the talking.

10. Banshee (Sean Cassidy)

At the end of my list, we have the leader of Generation X and the only (currently?) dead X-Man. While the movies (or failed TV pilot) don’t give Cassidy any justice, he is totally on my list because he is probably one of – if not the most – experienced character in the roster. He’s seen his fair share of action as he’s been in the X-books since the 60’s. He’s lost his powers by damaging his vocal chords when saving Japan from tremendous waves (caused by a villain). He founded X-Corps: a short-lived mutant police force. He’s been a detective with Interpol. He’s a father. The list just goes on. Noble, honest, and self-sacrificial (I mentioned he’s dead, right?), Banshee would be the most likely to lead my fantasy group of X-Men.

My honorable mentions go to: Captain Britain, Juggernaut, Polaris, Rogue, and Nightcrawler.

So that’s my list! Do you agree? Disagree? Do you think there would be too much drama or that everyone would be mature enough to get over it all?

And what about you?! Who is on your X-Men dream team? Heck, who is your dream team of superheroes? Sound off below!

And keep on Space Truckin’!

Bizarre Comic Book News

“Derek, where have you been?”

I know, I know! I’ve been busy, damn it! Luckily, I have a pretty decent-sized update to share with ya’ll.

But first, if you haven’t already, add me to Twitter!

With the Avengers movie just rearing its head this weekend and already posed to make over $500 million world-wide in just over a week, methinks it’s pretty safe to say that Marvel will be pumping out tons and tons of movies very soon.

A New X-Movie in the Works?

I digress. I was running around on the internet during the past week and came across some ridiculous movie news that I’m not entirely sure about.

There’s a pretty heavy rumour at Collider suggesting that there will be a New Mutants movie in the works.

While sure, those are some low-tiered superheroes to be dealing with, the last thing I’d want 20th Century Fox to screw up is one of my favourite “family” books. By “family” I mean that New Mutants aren’t like the traditional X-Books where there’s always fighting and planning. These folks are youngin’s who just try to enjoy life and are also just mutants.

While sure, you could argue they’re fighters (because superhero books involve fighting), I just know if Fox did fire out a New Mutants flick, it wouldn’t captivate anything that the New Mutants were – or are – for that matter. Albeit, seeing a CGI Warlock would be pretty exciting.

Who Hates the Watchmen Prequels More than this Guy?

Now I’m no doctor, but not bringing in comics because “you’re going to lose money” seems like a pretty hefty gamble.

In Brooklyn, Bergen Street Comics manager Tucker Stone revealed that he won’t be bringing in the new Watchmen prequels.

Hold up. Why? Stone said,

“‘We won’t have it on the wall,” said Stone. “It’s not useful for graphic novels, it’s not useful for small press. . . It’s only useful for the weekly stuff. We’re gonna lose money, we’ll probably lose customers. . . It was a decision that was made. When I heard that decision, I said that’s a bad idea. . . That’s an explanation that I’ll have to give over and over again. As time has gone on, as I’ve seen online response to that project. . . This is just gross, and we don’t want to be part of this one. We’ll participate with the grossness they did to Kirby on the Avengers books, but this one. . .'”

Interesting, ain’t it?

The kicker is I would probably pick them up if I saw them at my LCS (which I know I’ll see there). But imagine all of the other folk who’d step in to want the book? Maybe Stone will just have to take in more orders than usual? Or maybe he’s right and he just knows his comic buying audience than we’re led to believe? Regardless, it’s a pretty bold statement to make.

On the other hand, what about creators rights? Now the people who worked hard on these comics aren’t going to get paid appropriately. . . Hmm.

FanExpo Canada Brings in the Big Guns

As the yearly tradition goes in Toronto, FanExpo Canada will be providing another year filled with folks in the comic industry. You may remember last year when I attended and gave a massive recap about the con. Well this year, HobbyStar has announced some big names yet again!

Of course, I’m most excited about Stan Lee, and am thrilled to meet him again. See? I met him before.

But other attendees announced are:

Adi Granov (Artist)
Tony Moore (Artist – The Walking Dead, Venom)
Greg Capullo (Artist – Batman)
Tony Daniel (Writer – Detective Comics, Hawkman)
Steve Epting (Artist – Fantastic Four & many more)
Frank Quitely (Artist – Batman & Robin)
David Finch (Artist – Batman: The Dark Knight)
Carlos Pacheco (Artist – Uncanny X-Men)
Esad Ribic (Artist – Uncanny X-Force, Ultimates, X-O Manowar)
Dan Slott (Writer – Amazing Spider-Man)

And that’s just the preliminary list. Yeesh! There’s still tons to be announced!

Needless to say, it’s shaping up to be a pretty exciting Expo. Hooray!

Avengers Versus X-Men

And at last, we have the whole “AvX” fiasco. While I’m picking up the title issues of the series plus the battles, I have to say the issues involved in the crossover are just silly. While Secret Avengers has been alright, Uncanny X-Men, and Wolverine & The X-Men aren’t too necessary, I’m finding. I’m just glad X-Factor is staying out of the foray.

Although, I will say Avengers Versus X-Men #3 was pretty decent, making me think that there’s still hope for the series. (See what I did there?) Gah.

Until next time, keep on Space Truckin’!

It’s About Time!

It’s definitely been over a month since I last talked about comics on this site which is about – hey! Comics!

What have I been enjoying?

Legion Of Monsters was an excellent four-part mini series that was killed in sales. It was so disheartening to see such a good book falter in sales the way it did. Dennis Hopeless and Juan Doe rocked the entire story. It was funny, sad, action-packed, and most of all – it worked. When this comes out as a TPB, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you get it. It really was too good to pass-up. The best part is that you do not require any past knowledge of the characters to pick it up.

As of this week, Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning, and the Lopez duo brought upon New Mutants #37:

This story stole my heart as being simply adorable. Not to mention it was great for Amara to finally get some page-time. In a nutshell, many issues back, Amara made a deal with Mephisto to go on a date with him in order to save her friends. In NM #37, the devil’s come to claim his due. The results are magnificent. Please pick this up. It’s well worth your $2.99.

Old News & New News

As I’m sure you’ve all heard, DC is planning the prequel to The Watchmen. My take on this is that I don’t really care. While I am definitely interested in what DC is going to do, I definitely am shocked that they are going to be tampering with such a classic story.

I don’t know how well they’ll sort it all out – or even if it will do that well in sales. The catch is this: Comics are still a dying medium. DC, in two years, have pumped the world up with excitement over comics. Their reboot with the New 52 put sales of comics from all publishers up. Interest in comics are back. Even at my LCS, I’ve seen that it’s been busier. This is incredible. With DC rebooting an already popular franchise, surely this can only mean more sales not just for them – but the reinvigoration of comics in general.

Keep it up DC! You’re helping the medium tremendously.

The other big comic news was just dropped today: Tony Moore is suing Robert Kirkman over The Walking Dead.

For those who do not know, Tony Moore drew the first six issues of the series and did quite a few covers until issue 24. Apparently when Moore left The Walking Dead contracts were signed for him to get finances for movies and what-not. However, this didn’t include television shows. In a nutshell, he wants his due.

The clincher to the whole story is that Moore and Kirkman have been best friends since they were children. It’s heartbreaking to see something like this happen. I guess we’ll have to wait and see how the results pan-out.

Until next time, keep on Space Truckin’!

About These New X-Men. . .

With the releases of X-Men #20, New Mutants #33 and Uncanny X-Men #1, tied-in with Wolverine & The X-Men #1, I’d have to say that Marvel’s “Regenesis” project is now in full-swing.

What greatly surprises me though is how much I am loving it.

I was very timid about seeing the X-Men “start over” with the events of Schism. However, now four books in, I have to say that it’s great to witness it happening. Here’s why:

Unused characters are finally getting some voices of their own. For example, Karma in New Mutants, Magik is actually “normal” in Uncanny X-Men, and Storm, Warpath and Domino finally get some air in X-Men. In Wolverine & The X-Men, the roster is much larger, but Husk seems like she’ll be a major player, while I’m sure something is lingering behind Toad. Those are just a few examples, but you get the idea.

New readers – jump on! If you have no idea about the X-Men universe at all, here is where you can join in. While the continuing titles will be a bit of a learning curve, the both Jason Aaron for Wolverine & The X-Men and Kieron Gillen for Uncanny X-Men have made their stories pretty comic-friendly. That’s not to say that some readers may still have a hard time wrapping their heads around some of the character – but for the most part, it’s easy reading. Not to mention, Marvel has created some simple character guides at the end of their Uncanny X-Men and Wolverine & The X-Men books for you to gather the who’s who.

It’s still exciting – and I don’t mean it’s action-packed. I read New Mutants this week and couldn’t help but feel like I was a part of a family. I’ve been reading the New Mutants since forever, and to watch these characters grow and mature – my goodness, Dani Moonstar’s grown to be a tremendous force to be reckoned with. It’s really astounding to see how these characters have evolved and yet still remain grounded. This is exciting for someone who has read about these characters years ago and watches them grow up. I couldn’t imagine what real parenting is even like. . . Until then, I’ll live it vicariously through comics.

X-Club 1

With X-Factor, Uncanny X-Force, Generation Hope, Astonishing X-Men and the new X-Club (just-annouced and coming in December by Simon Spurrier and Paul Davidson), who knows where this Regenesis will be taking us!

P.S. – Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning need to permanently stay on an X-book. I love their story-telling.

P.P.S. – Isn’t it weird no one has seen Cyclops cry over this Schism yet?

P.P.P.S. – If you’ve read Uncanny X-Men #1 already, what do you think is going to happen to Miss “Perfect” Frost?

P.P.P.P.S. – War Machine is gonna lose, I’m sure.

P.P.P.P.P.S. – When you hear X-Club, how many of you start singing, “Ain’t no party like an X-Club party” like how I do?

P.P.P.P.P.P.S. – I am absolutely in love with Jason Pearson’s cover for New Mutants #33.

New Mutants

Keep on Space Truckin’!