New X-Men (2001) Was Awesome
When I started drafting this post, it was going to be something about art not matching the story. At first, during the first eight or nine issues, the art by Frank Quitely was quite jarring. It reminds me of the art by Juan Jose Ryp in the current Wolverine run, where everything looks like worms to me… It’s most likely Ryp’s presentation of Krakoan technology, which is floral in nature. Still, he manages to make it look like worms, hah.
Or is it because of the way Beast looks? It might be the faces; go take a look at any of the Wolverine books from issue #26.
Which brings me to an example of Quitely’s art in New X-Men #121.
It’s not quite the depiction of Jean or Emma I’m used to these days. However, all that aside, issue #121 was fantastic. Jean and Emma dive into the mind of a subdued Cassandra Nova only to find that Professor X’s mind has been trapped in her dying body!
Then I got a few issues where Igor Kordey provided the art, which was also something to get used to, but I ended up making a note later that I liked his art. Go figure…
His depictions of Beak, especially after thinking about it, were more to show how not every mutant is a model and they have to deal with some horrible mutations. Anyway…
After reading all 49 or so issues, I don’t think the art was a problem, as Grant Morrison’s stories were terrific.
During his run, we got these amazing stories:
- E Is for Extinction, where Cassandra Nova bombs Genosha, causing the death of 16 million mutants, including Magneto! This is important as this plays a running narrative in Jonathan Hickman’s reboot, which starts with House of X | Powers of X back in 2019. The other big plot point during this arc is when Emma Frost joins the X-Men!
- The Man from Room X, where the X-Men rescue a Chinese mutant, Xorn, was being held captive by the Chinese government, who also joins the X-Men. Sublime and the U-Men are introduced, which come up in both recent runs of Marauders (2022) and New Mutants (2019 - 2022).
- Riot at Xavier’s, that introduces [Quentin Quire aka Kid Omega] where he gets disillusioned with Professor X’s teachings and inaction, starts a movement, rebels and dies? He was back in Krakoa as a member of X-Force.
- Murder at the Mansion, where Emma is
murdered, shot in diamond form and shattered into a million pieces. Bishop and Sage turn up to investigate, cracking the case.
That’s not all of the plots and arcs, but they’re the ones that stood out to me. Other crazy things that happened during this run were Emma and Scott’s psychic affair. We’re introduced to the Stepford Cuckoos, who are quintuplet clones of Emma? I don’t know if that was stated here but that’s what they are. PhantomX shoots out Toad’s knees 😂 Also, Xorn reveals himself as Magneto (evil, menacing laugh), takes over New York but then is defeated. This leads to one of Jean Grey’s (many) deaths. This allows Emma and Scott’s relationship to evolve into a real life couple for a while.
Heaps of other cool stuff happened too. I highly recommend New X-Men (2001) if you’re into the X-Men and have yet to read this run.