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Back to the Past

July 9, 2009

     This fun little issue of Uncanny X-Men sees Beast, Psylocke, Angel, Dr. Nemesis, and the rest of the X-Club travel to the early years of the 20th century in order to get a genetic sample from Nemesis’ parents to try and figure out what causes the X-Gene to surface.  Now, it hasn’t really been clear as to whether or not Nemesis is a mutant, but I think he would have to be in order for this research to be useful.  At any rate, his parents are working on some sort of clean energy alternative, and they’re being financed by that era’s Hellfire Club.  The Hellfire Club tries to steal it from them, but they fail.  His father succeeds in completing the machine, and the Hellfire Club uses it to power an archaic Sentinel in order to defeat Friedrich Nietzsche’s concept of the Overman, otherwise known in the Marvel Universe as a mutant.  The X-Club defeats it and inadvertantly cause the 1906 San Francisco earthquake.  However, they do get the blood samples, though not without loss.

     This was a cute story that was primarily geared towards shedding light on Dr. Nemesis.  He’s abrasive and generally unpleasant, and he’s one of the only characters that Matt Fraction consistently writes well, along with Beast, Cyclops, Wolverine, and maybe Pixie.  Since Beast and Dr. Nemesis were probably the two featured characters in this issue, he did very well.  He also did very well with all the characters from the past, but basically all of them were either his invention or characters that had little work done on them upon which he was expanding.  He wrote Angel fairly well, and most of the other characters were mostly background.  So again, this story was very fun.  And I’m not a fan of the X-Men’s constant time romps.  Also, Yanick Paquette proved that his work on Young X-Men was his worst work, as this issue was actually quite well done.  The faces weren’t freakish looking, and the women often actually looked beautiful.  Even Beast looked pretty dang good most of the time.  This is the calm before the storm that is Utopia, and I’m glad that we get a nice little story to bridge the gap between two major arcs.

Plot: 8.7      Art: 8.5      Dialogue: 8.6      Overall: 8.6

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