Monday, June 26, 2017

Fine, Kurt, don't tell me.

This was one of the first X-Men comics I read as a kid; it would be years before I'd see the "flying carnival wagon" incident Nightcrawler refers to there! From 1981, Uncanny X-Men #149, "And the Dead Shall Bury the Living!" Written by Chris Claremont, art by Dave Cockrum and Joe Rubinstein. (Reprinted in X-Men Classic #53.)

The issue opens with the team--a surprisingly short roster of Storm, Colossus, Wolverine, and Nightcrawler--working on the Danger Room, while Professor X worries they would soon face Magneto, whom the current roster had never beat. (Aside from flashbacks and Days of Futures Past, Mags hadn't appeared in the book since 1978's X-Men #113! A surprisingly long absence.) Did I say four X-Men? Well, they also had Kitty Pryde, who shows up wearing a new Sprite costume and roller skates, and wrecks the Professor's computer by phasing through it: the Professor hammers home that she's still a trainee. So of course, Kitty sneaks along when the team flies to Antarctica to check out Magneto's old volcano base.

Said base had been flooded with lava the last time the X-Men were there, but has been cleared out some, by what's left of Garokk: he had fallen into a pit back in X-Men #116, and Storm had been unable to save him, so now he was an angry part-crystal, part-melted rock guy. After beating the team, he creates a smaller, bottomless pit to throw Storm into; but Kitty gets the X-Men back into the fight, and Garokk takes the dive down it. Meanwhile, in the Bermuda Triangle, Scott Summers and Lee Forester are guests of Magneto, who has risen a mysterious sunken city, and neutralized Cyclops' optic blasts! This might've been quite the cliffhanger, if I gave a crap about Cyclops. (I'm kidding; actually by this point, Cyke hadn't done any of the douchey things that soured me on the character.)

I'm positive I read X-Men #150 out of a certain spinner rack I mentioned before, but I don't think I had one for myself for some time! And my personal recollection was a bit fuzzy, I would've read both of those before 1982's X-Men Annual #6.


Dale Bagwell said...

Didn't read this issue or Classic X-men#53, but I did read and used to have Classic X-Men#54, which reprinted X-Men#150. Damn fine story that planted the seeds that led to Magneto's face turn a few years later. Plus you can never go wrong with classic Dave Cockrum art.

Did you know his pet project, the Futurians have been scooped up by Rob Liefield with Cockrum's wife's permission, in an attempt to publish them again? Yeah I know, I won't hold my breath to see if anything ever happens on that end.

SallyP said...

Ooh, I have this, and a darned fine story it is. Gosh I lived Kitty's costumes. They were absolutely hideous, but that was the whole point...a teenaged girl would put together something like that!