The X-MEN movies

The X-Men movies timeline

There was a long period of time where the only super hero movies we had were the Christopher Reeve Superman films, which (as we discussed HERE), had their considerable ups and downs (mostly downs), and the Batman franchise (which we discussed HERE, HERE, and HERE), but this was before the excellent Christopher Nolan reboot, so it was also mostly bad.

X-Men teaser posterThen the late 90’s hit and Marvel (with New Line Cinema) had a surprise hit on their hands with Blade, and all of a sudden it felt like there might be a chance we’d get some more. That’s when Fox dropped a bombshell and announced they were going to finally, FINALLY, release a live action X-Men film!

Say what you want about the first movie, and we will, but it really opened the floodgates for the huge wave of superhero films (that mostly sucked) for the early 21st century. For better or worse we probably wouldn’t have the Spider-man movies without this one!

Fifteen years later, and the franchise has had its ups and downs (notice a trend?), but found its footing again with X-Men: First Class and Days of Future Past. Now, with X-Men: Apocalypse, Deadpool, and a third Wolverine film looming, the franchise appears to be in as good a shape as it has ever been.

But how did they get here?

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X-Men Crossovers Part 8

 

aoaThe Age of Apocalypse

Took Place In: Age of Apocalypse Alpha, Omega, Amazing X-Men 1-4, Astonishing X-Men 1-4, X-Calibre 1-4, Weapon X 1-4, Gambit & the X-Ternals 1-4, Factor X 1-4, X-Man 1-4, X-Universe 1-2, Generation Next 1-4

Written By: Scott Lobdell (Alpha, Omega, Astonishing X-Men, Generation Next), Mark Waid (Alpha, Omega), Fabian Nicieza (Amazing X-Men, Gambit and the X-Ternals), Larry Hama (Weapon X), John Francis Moore (Factor X), Warren Ellis (X-Calibre), Jeph Loeb (X-Man)

Art By: Andy Kubert (Amazing X-Men), Roger Cruz (Alpha, Omega), Steve Epting (Alpha, Factor X), Joe Madureira (Astonishing X-Men), Dan Green (Weapon X), Adam Kubert (Weapon X), Karl Kessel (Weapon X), Ken Lashley (X-Calibre), Tony Daniel (Gambit and the X-Ternals), Steve Skroce (X-Man), Chris Bachalo (Generation Next)

Characters Involved: Magneto, Rogue, Quicksilver, Storm, Exodus, Banshee, Iceman, Morph, Sabretooth, Wild Child, Sunfire, Dazzler, Nightcrawler (X-Men), Colossus, Shadowcat, Husk, Chamber, Vincente, Skin, Mondo (Generation Next), Gambit, Sunspot, Lila Cheney, Jubilee, Strong Guy (X-Ternals), Cyclops, Havok, Beast, Cannonball, Bedlam Brothers (Factor X), Forge, X-Man, Sauron, Toad, Mastermind (X-Man), Sinister, Holocaust, Abyss, Mikhail Rasputin (Horsemen), Apocalypse

Story: Hoo boy. I briefly touched on this huge story here, but let’s get into more detail. When Marvel announced that they were cancelling every book in the X-Men line, fans went apeshit. And when they announced they were relaunching them with all new #1 issues, retailers went apeshit (in a good way). Fans were backlashing something fierce, but then this trickle of teases came out, including a book that showed all of the new character designs, and all of a sudden people weren’t upset. In fact, they were really, really excited.

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X-Men Crossovers Part 7

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The Phalanx Covenant

Took Place In: Uncanny X-Men 316-317, X-Men 36-37, X-Factor 106, X-Force 38, Excalibur 82, Wolverine 85, Cable 16

Written By: Larry Hama (Cable, Wolverine), Scott Lobdell (X-Factor, Uncanny X-Men, Excalibur), Todd Dezago (X-Factor, Excalibur), Fabian Nicieza (X-Men, X-Force)

Art By: Steve Skroce (Cable), Ken Lashley/Steve Epting (Excalibur), Joe Madureira (Uncanny X-Men), Adam Kubert (Wolverine), Jan Duursema/Roger Cruz (X-Factor), Tony Daniel (X-Force), Andy Kubert (X-Men)

Characters Involved: Banshee, Emma Frost, Jubilee, Sabretooth, M, Husk, Skin, Blink (Generation Next), Professor X, Moira Mactaggert, Wolfsbane, Douglock, Cannonball, Forge, Nightcrawler, Polaris, Siryn (Life Signs), Cyclops, Phoenix, Wolverine, Cable (Final Sanction)

Story: The Phalanx Covenant is a bit of a break from the normal X-Men crossover of this time, both format-wise and content-wise. The format is a little strange, with 3 crossovers happening simultaneously under the “Phalanx Covenant” banner. Uncanny X-Men and X-Men crossover for 2 issues each in “Generation Next”, which is basically just an origin story and staging ground for the “Generation X” book, which launched shortly after. X-Force, X-Factor and Excalibur crossed over for “Life Signs”, which was the most forgettable of the 3 stories, and Cable and Wolverine crossed over for the 2 part “Final Sanction”.

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X-Men Crossovers Part 5

X-Cutioner’s Song

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Took place in: Uncanny X-men 294-296, X-factor 84-86, X-men 14-16, X-force 16-18

Written by: Peter David (X-Factor), Scott Lobdell (Uncanny X-Men), Fabian Nicieza (X-Men, X-Force)

Art By: Jae Lee (X-factor), Brandon Peterson (Uncanny X-men), Andy Kubert (X-men), Greg Capullo (X-force)

Characters Involved: Havok, Polaris, Multiple Man, Wolfsbane, Quicksilver, Strong Guy (X-Factor), Cannonball, Sunspot, Boom Boom, Rictor, Shatterstar, Feral, Warpath (X-Force), Storm, Iceman, Archangel, Jean Grey, Bishop, Cyclops, Wolverine, Beast, Jubilee, Gambit, Rogue, Psylocke (X-Men), Cable, Apocalypse, Sinister, Stryfe

imagesStory: Hoo boy. This story is 1990’s X-Men at its peak, for better or worse. If, like me, you were reading all 4 of the titles involved in this crossover, then this was awesome. But if you were a causal fan, or just reading one or two of the books, this was a damn disaster. The story begins in Central Park, at a free concert by mutant musician Lila Cheney. At one point in the concert there is a break, and Professor X gives a speech about tolerance and how mutants are just like normal people, blah blah. Attending the concert are Storm, Bishop, Rogue, and a disguised Archangel. So a woman that can control the weather with her thoughts, a time-displaced militant mutant with the ability to shoot lazers from his hands, a woman that can kill you with a touch, and a flying cutlery drawer. Yeah, they’re just like us, Charles.

Sadly for the Professor, he is suddenly shot in the chest by what appears to be Cable! Before the X-Men can react he teleports out, leaving Charles for dead. This stuns the mutant world, as Cable has been affiliated with X-Force and before that the New Mutants, and is part of the X-family, albeit not directly. This ESPECIALLY stuns X-Force, who have not seen Cable in months and a) can’t believe what he’s done, and b) know that they’re going to be everyone’s first stop on the ass beating train.

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Top 5 “Cyclops is a badass!” Moments

Growing up, all of my friends liked the X-Men. We loved pretty much all of them, even Longshot and the Dazzler (I know. Shut up). Everyone loved Nightcrawler, and Iceman, and Colossus, but it seemed like everyone’s favorite was always Wolverine. While I think Wolverine is cool, I always thought Cyclops was way cooler. I dunno, maybe it’s because I can’t help but think that a really short, hairy Canadian shouldn’t be the star of the show, but I digress. There were always a few writers who portrayed Cyclops with the respect he is due, like Louise Simonson, Joss Whedon, Chris Claremont, and maybe Scott Lobdell. Too often he was written as this stiff, do-gooder with a stick up his ass; always the buzzkill.

Anyway, I wanted to take a quick moment to show people what pretty much every telepath in the Marvel universe knows: Cyclops is a badass.

(Seriously, think about it. The most powerful telepath in the world (Professor X) decides he’s the one worth building his life’s dream around, the most powerful telepath in the UNIVERSE (Phoenix) just can’t stay away from him and even married him, Psylocke wanted him for years, and he’s currently sleeping with Emma Frost, another of the most powerful telepaths in the world. Also, Sinister, an incredibly powerful telepath himself, spent years manipulating and testing him).

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Top 10 X-Men Villains

The X-Men have one of the widest ranging rogue’s galleries in all of comics. A ton of them are really great villains, and a ton of them…. not so much. Anyway, here are my top 10 X-Men villains.

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Favorite Stories vol 2- X-Men: The Dark Phoenix Saga

My first exposure to X-Men comics was the Dark Phoenix saga, which many consider to be the greatest X-Men story ever told, even to this day. It was like saying, “Oh, you have a passing interest in trying some really light, social drug? Here, try this crack.” Before this story I would read comics occasionally. Really just whenever I would happen to get some. I never actively sought them out. After this story I wanted everything X-Men I could get my grubby little hands on.

I’m not going to get into too much detail on what came before, since a lot of that has been changed retroactively. But essentially Jean Grey aka Marvel Girl, one of the original X-Men, is imbued with the powers of the Phoenix, a cosmic entity capable of great and terrible things. For a while, Jean seemed ok. Her powers of telepathy and telekinesis were raised to an unprecedented degree, but other than that she was still just Jean.

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