X-Men Crossovers Part 6

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Fatal Attractions

Took place in:  X-factor 92, X-force 25, Uncanny X-men 304, X-men 25, Wolverine 75, Excalibur 71

Written by: Scott Lobdell (Uncanny X-men, X-factor, Excalibur), Fabian Nicieza (X-men, X-force), Larry Hama (Wolverine)

Art by: Joe Quesada (X-factor), Greg Capullo (X-force), John Romita JR (Uncanny X-men), Andy Kubert (X-men), Adam Kubert (Wolverine), Ken Lashley (Excalibur)

Characters involved: Magneto, Exodus, Fabian Cortez (Acolytes), Havok, Polaris, Random, Quicksilver, Wolfsbane, Multiple Man, Strong Guy (X-Factor), Shadowcat, Phoenix, Nightcrawler (Excalibur), Cable, Cannonball, Boom Boom, Rictor, Sunspot, Warpath, Shatterstar, Feral (X-Force), Professor X, Cyclops, Storm, Jean Grey, Beast, Iceman, Archangel, Wolverine, Colossus, Bishop, Gambit, Rogue, Jubilee, Psylocke (X-Men)

Story: Unlike the last few crossovers, Fatal Attractions is really just a series of events in each title, much like Mutant Massacre. In other words, you don’t need to read any of the other chapters to follow the story in the book you were already reading.

The story centers around the return of Magneto, who had been thought dead for 2 years. He has rebuilt his space station, Avalon, and is putting his house in order.

Exodus

Exodus

The first chapter takes place in X-Factor, where Fabian Cortez, the current leader of the Acolytes in Magneto’s absence, sends his army of shitheads to destroy a hospital, one person at a time. They run through the hospital like a buzzsaw, killing everyone they see. X-Factor, the government sanctioned mutant team, is sent to investigate the incident, and they are immediately pissed beyond belief. They start on the road to tracking the Acolytes down, and on the way to confront them they run across a mysterious man flying around (this would be Exodus). He stares at them for a moment and flies away (more on him later).

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They find the Acolytes at a government run facility where they discover Project: Wideawake, the government’s pending response to the ‘mutant problem’, which is essentially just a huge army of mega-Sentinels. Disgusted with this, and with their government liason’s knowledge of the program, they essentially quit (at least for a short while). Fabian Cortez, not knowing Magneto had come back and was about to take the Acolytes back from him, tries to convince Quicksilver that, as the son of their messiah, he belonged with them (to not avail). Of course, not before beating the snot out of the Acoyltes.

Meanwhile, over in X-Force, the team is still trying to find their footing after losing Cable to the events of the X-Cutioner’s Song. They have taken up residence on the reservation of Warpath’s people, and come home to find that someone is in their base. They split up to search, each being taken down one at a time, until Cannonball confronts the intruder: Cable!

Nate survived the time storm, and was able to ditch Stryfe and get back to our time. His first order of business is to recover his lost A.I. companion, the Professor, which happens to be up in Magneto’s flying space station. Before they can make any decisions on plans of action, they are interrupted by Exodus, Magneto’s new right hand man. Nobody knows shit about him at this point, but we will come to learn in the coming months that he is a borderline imorrtal, incredibly powerful telepathic/telekinetic mutant. He has come to offer sanctuary to a select few members of the team: Cannonball, Sunspot, Boom Boom, etc. Mostly just the people that were members of, or affiliated with, the New Mutants during Magneto’s time as the headmaster of the Xavier School. They agree to go with him, knowing that it is the easiest way to infiltrate the base. Cable smartly slips a tracking device on Cannonball so they can locate the cloaked space station.

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Once on board the other members of X-Force work to find Sam and the others so they can get home, while Cable infiltrates the base to find the Professor A.I. Unfortunately for him, he runs into Magneto, who promptly wrecks the FUCK out of him and leaves him within an inch (if that) of death. Using the Professor Cable is able to teleport back home, where X-Force hooks him up to life support while his body repairs itself.

Over in Uncanny X-Men, the team prepares to host all the other X-characters for the funeral of little Illyana Rasputin, sister of Colossus and former member of the New Mutants, who was a victim of Stryfe’s Legacy Virus. Colossus had a tough year or so. His parents were killed over in Russia, his long lost brother Mikhael essentially allowed himself to die, and then his sister dies, and he, for all of his great power, could do nothing to stop any of it. He’s not in a good place.

So everyone shows up for the funeral, and during the ceremony Magneto shows up, announcing his return to his greatest enemies. He’s incredibly powerful, too, maybe stronger than he’s ever been, and is able to hold everyone in place by grabbing onto the iron in their bloodstreams! He does not come to fight, however, but to offer sanctuary on Avalon and a place on his Acolytes to anyone who is willing. Of course, the X-Men being the X-Men, a fight breaks out, but Magneto is saved from Colossus, of all people, who shocks everyone by accepting his offer. He then tells Xavier off, saying that he has fought and bled and lost for his stupid dream, and all it has ever brought him is pain and grief. The X-Men’s strongest member then leaves with their greatest foe.

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fa5In X-Men, Magneto’s base has been fired upon and he decides ‘enough is enough’, so he drops an EMP on Earth that wipes out tons and tons of electronic equipment and systems around the world.  The X-Men decide that it’s their responsibility to respond, and to stop this Magneto nonsense before it really gets out of control. Xavier, using an exo skeleton powered by his psionic power, will be joining the field team this time, which consists of X-Factor’s Quicksilver, Gambit, Rogue, Wolverine, and Jean Grey. They teleport up to Avalon, and begin taking out security systems and Acolytes, before the finally confront the big man himself.

fa2Magneto, being Magneto, is kicking ass, when Wolverine tries to cut him open. Finally having had it up to here with the smelly little Canadian, Magneto does what he should have done the first time they fought, and uses his power to tear the adamantium off of Wolverine’s skeleton and out through his pores! Wolverine hovers as close to death as we’ve ever seen him, mostly due to Jean Grey telekinetically holding his body together, and Xavier, having passed his breaking point, lashes out at Magneto, and wipes his mind! This leaves Magneto a comatose vegetable, and the X-Men are forced to leave before Colossus forgets that they are his friends and alerts the active Acolytes to their presence.

In Wolverine, Logan tries to recover from the trauma of what Magneto did to him. He feels like without his adamantium claws and skeleton he will be a liability to the X-Men, and makes up his mind to leave the team. However, during a training exercise in the Danger Room, where he is trying to prove to himself that he still has something left, he reflexively tries to pop his claws, and is shocked and horrified to find that bone claws pop out of his hands! He always assumed the claws were part of the Weapon X experiments, and had no idea that he always had them (this being when he knew next to nothing about his true past). Logan still leaves the team (Marvel tried to fill the void his absence left by replacing him with Sabretooth, but that never stuck, thank God).

fa3Finally, in Excalibur, Cyclops, Jean Grey, and Professor X visit the remaining survivors of Excalibur (Nightcrawler, Rachel Summers, and Shadowcat) at Muir Island. They are all shocked by what has happened to Wolverine, and even more-so by Colossus’ apparent betrayal. Before he left the team, Piotr was unable to transform back to his human form, after sustaining a dent in his forehead during a fight. They come up with a plan to trick him to Muir Island where they can perform surgery on him and save his life, and try to convince him to rejoin the team. They trick him by having Shadowcat, the woman he loves, tell him that she wants to join the Acolytes, because she wants to be with him.

...ow

…ow

 

Colossus would remain gone from the team for a good while, and Illyana would remain dead for years. Wolverine would also remain gone from the X-Men for a long time, and it would be years before he regained his adamantium. Magneto remained in a coma for a long time, too. Xavier’s actions would eventually lead to the Onslaught persona forming in his mind and fucking up the Marvel universe something fierce. Cable recovered from his injuries and rejoined X-Force, but found that Cannonball had really taken over leadership of the team. X-Factor never trusted Valerie Cooper, their government liason, again.

 

 

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