Uncanny X-Men #466 and Claremont’s future

When I read a comic book I am constantly worried that the next page I turn will be the last. Not so with Uncanny X-Men #466, written by Chris Claremont. I actually found myself looking ahead repeatedly to see just how many torturous pages I had left to endure. I purchased it based on the description:

It all comes down to this! The Weapon X saga reaches its violent end. Who will be left standing, and at what cost?!

I bought it based on the cover art as well. It looked interesting… I thought I was looking at Jean Grey turning in to the Phoenix again or something. Wrong. Jean Grey is dead, this is her daughter. And that stuff about “violent end”? I would like someone to read this book and tell me where the action was. This was the absolute worst comic book I have ever read. I am a long time X-Men fan, and a long time Chris Claremont fan. He started writing for X-Men back when they were losing speed and looked to be at the end of their road. Chris joined forces with artist Dave Cockrum to release Giant Size X-Men #1 in 1975. This gave the series the boost it needed with a new group of heroes working as the X-Men under the mentorship of Professor X. It was fresh, fun and exciting. I enjoy reading those comics very much.

A few pages in to Uncanny X-Men #466 I knew what I was in for: garbage. I turned back to the cover very quickly to see who the writer was and found it was claremont. I was unaware that he is still writing for the X-Men… he shouldn’t be. The dialog is terrible, like you’re reading some kind of poorly translated Japanese anime. The story in this issue was unbelievably boring, basically a filler issue while some action builds up for later issues… which means zero action in this issue.

The art is an abomination as well. Chris Bachalo was obviously also inspired by Japanese anime. Take this page for example. Apparently Grandpa is getting ready to whip out some ninjitsu to win this little basketball war (last panel). Or how about these two panels? Is the art so bad that they had to put the character’s emotions in word balloons? Yes! And was Joe Caramagna (lettering) so lazy that he couldn’t draw the emoticons, but rather created them with Adobe Illustrator? Yes!

Another thing that struck me as odd: this comic had seven inkers… isn’t that a little on the excessive side?

What though of Chris Claremont’s future? No sooner had I read this comic than I received the following update from Marvel about Mr. Claremont himself:

By voting on Marvel.com, fans will have a chance to determine what 6-issue X-Men mini-series Claremont will tackle after X-Men: The End.

“X-Men fans are some of the most vocal out there,” says Paniccia. “We’re taking advantage of that voice and putting them in the driver’s seat. By next week, we’ll have a new X-Men book in the works from one of the industry’s most influential authors.”

All four of the possible title choices take place outside of current continuity, including stories from previously visited alternate universes as well as an entirely new X-Men universe.

And the four choices are:

  • Days of Future Past – This series would pick up the moment after Kitty Pryde sent Rachel Grey into the past from the original story. The world is under the rule of Sentinels, most mutants are either killed or in camps, and only a strange alliance of outlaws stand a chance at changing this dark future.
  • Asgardian War Stories – During the Asgardian War, the X-Men, Alpha Flight, and the New Mutants all fought alongside the Norse Gods. But what would have happened if they never returned to Earth and stayed in Asgard?
  • NEXT – Witness today’s generation of X-Men if the Marvel Universe aged in real-time. Both the first and second teams of X-Men are approaching 50 and the New Mutants are now in their thirties. This series will follow this new generation of X-Men and the new reality they find themselves in.
  • What If? X-Men – Continuing from 2004’s What If Magneto and Professor X Had Formed the X-Men Together?, this series would be a re-imagining of the X-Men in contemporary times from an entirely all-new perspective. Because of Magneto helping found the X-Men, not only has the history of the X-Men changed, but that of the entire world. Every character’s life and future is up for grabs here.
  • It’s up to you to decide what legendary X-Men tale Chris Claremont will pen next. Visit www.Marvel.com and let your voice be heard for which of these X-stories you would like to see.

So there you have it. Marvel can’t make up their minds where to shift the faltering Claremont to so they’re asking the fans to decide. How about giving us a fifth choice:

Sacked – The story of an old, former heavy-hitter from the Marvel universe that has sacrificed his imagination and charm for money. He couldn’t sell an issue and now he’s out of a job and trying to hock his collection of old X-Men comics at pawn shops just to get his next Mc-Meal!

17 responses to “Uncanny X-Men #466 and Claremont’s future”

  1. I bet this memer kid is really Chris Claremont in disguise. I mean who but an old person trying to imitate a teenager would type “Dewwwd.” It sounds like something you’d see a drug dealer in a McGruff the Crime Dog comic saying.

  2. “an old person trying to imitate a teenager..”

    hey, i resemble that remark, buuudy (um, can’t i be “old school?” 😉

    in most series, i find there’s usually a “breather” issue every now and again; either downtime after an extended hectic storyline or sometimes a calm-before-the-storm type thing. they’re often a little peek into some other corners of the characters lives.

    judge not on one individual episode but on the quality of the whole run.

    p.s. only a troll-minded kid would waste a time commenting on a two-word comment and not bother to add anything to the conversation. really, v, how bout something on the actual post itself? or are you Joe in disguise?

  3. Memer:
    I don’t hide.
    I agree that you can find a downtime issue in a lot of comics these days, but I don’t like it. However not enjoying the “calm” issues would be a personal preference. Putting the preference aside, and trying to take this comic for a glimpse in to the character’s lives still leaves me bored. Perhaps I’ve been away from X-Men for so long that I feel no attachment to the current characters.

    Regardless, none of that takes away the fact that the dialogue and overall writing style of Claremont has taken a dive.

    By the way… are you Claremont? 😉

  4. Let me lay this out so you can understand memer:

    First, make sure to read what you are typing in your rebuttal as saying “I resemble that remark” instead of “I resent that remark” means you are in agreement with everything I stated. (and if you meant to type “resemble” then you are clearly losing it and should probably change your depends right about now)

    Second, If you are so worried about adding something to the conversation why would you initially post a two-word comment that was at the brain stem level at best?

    Third, my comment did add something to the conversation by implying that you by proxy are Chris Claremont and are a pathetic, feeble minded man no longer capable of producing a quality comic book which shows my agreement with the original spirit of this review.

    Fourth, you smell, really bad, like poop. hee hee hee…

  5. Ok this is escalating faster than the news team battle scene in Anchor Man.

    Vulcore is an angry youth that can’t afford his daily dose of crack, and memer is a poor soul that bit back after being bitten.

    The next harsh comment gets deleted. Start cleaning it up or i ban everyone forever.

    Besides… you obviously both love each other and want to hook up.

  6. I think Vulcore’s age range is obvious. The “resemble” bit is an old joke, btw. Look it up.

    Second, I’d say I actually started the conversation (it’s a monologue til someone actually responds). Anyway, it’s not the word count, but the sentiment(s) expressed. Keep it movin is all i’m sayin.

    Third, troll (read: anti-social nerd with no real-space friends) is as troll does. The insta-vitriolic personal attack is a dead giveaway. And, so far, two Vulcore comments and still nothing about the initial post itself.

    Joe, ban me if you feel it’s necessary. I have nothing to apologize for. Except maybe that body odour thing.

    p.s. s’okay, i’m not a “poor soul.” 😉 these kids don’t faze me a whit. i know they’d be too gutless to talk like that to my face.

    p.p.s. it seems you’re both (if indeed you two characters inhabit separate bodies) are indeed half-serious about the Chris Claremont thing. for the record (but, really, if i were him, i wouldn’t admit it anyway), I am not he, nor do i know him or anyone who does.

  7. And the both lived happily ever after…

    Joe, ban me if you feel it’s necessary. I have nothing to apologize for.

    I have no desire to ban anyone, but I also don’t want my site turning in to one big flame fest obviously.

    t seems you’re both (if indeed you two characters inhabit separate bodies)

    Again: I don’t hide who I am. Vulcore is not me. What purpose would it serve me to visit my site under a false identity and insult my guests?

  8. […] Games I’m not sure what to think of the current decision Marvel has made to make Ed Brubaker and Billy Tan the new creative team on the Uncanny X-Men. Chris Claremont has been at it for a very long time, although I’ve been less than impressed with his current work, and it’s sad to see him taken off of the title. […]

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