Saturday, April 28, 2012
X-men Legacy #265 - Bucket List of Awesome
I think everyone should have a bucket list. You have to have some sense of what you want to do before you turn into maggot chow. I have shit like screw the hottest waitress in Los Angeles and smoke a joint on the White House lawn on my list. I'm sure it's no different with fictional characters. They have shit they want to do as well before they die or get rebooted out of existence, whichever comes first. They just never get a chance because let's face it. After you run around in skin-tight outfits waving your superpowered dick in everyone's face, there just isn't a sense of urgency. Well in the pages of X-men Legacy, that urgency is thrust into the picture with the force of a 1000 Sandra Fluke testimonies.
The previous issue of X-men Legacy brought a volatile situation right to the Jean Grey Institute's doorstep, which really is no more unusual than a fire drill considering the shit they've dealt with. Only instead of Exodus looking to flex his nuts, this time it was Weapon Omega and Mimic. They weren't looking to pick a fight, but they ended up doing so anyway because Weapon Omega must have had a bad dose of PCP or something that caused his powers to make him a walking time bomb. After some rather painful handshaking that turned into a schoolyard brawl, the X-men agreed to help Weapon Omega. The plan was simple by comic standards. They were going to have Mimic and Rogue absorb Weapon Omega to drain off his explosive potential. Then in a twist of physics that would make Stephen Hawking cringe (figuratively speaking) they ended up turning one bombastic mutant into three.
X-men Legacy #265 begins by detailing the immediate reaction of Rogue, Mimic, and Weapon Omega. I'm not sure how one is supposed to react when they find out they just became a walking bomb. I'm pretty sure there's an urge to shit your pants or pay an impromtu visit to your ex-girlfriend's house involved. For Beast, it quickly puts him on the spot. Even though he's been an insufferable douche-bag for the past few years, he's still the X-men's resident brainiac and he's the one that has to come up with a solution. It leaves the others to sweat it out. Rogue especially is worked up. Gambit, still showing an insatiable desire to get into her pants, tries to console her. Then Rogue tells Mimic she still has a thing going on with Magneto. I still don't get why she's not over her wrinkly scrotum fetish, but it makes little sense given the context of the situation and the presence of longtime flames like Gambit. I get that Gambit is an ass, but at least he doesn't have white hair on his balls.
While Beast is twiddling his thumbs, Rogue and Mimic are left to panic over how they'll be joining Weapon Omega in becoming a walking Chinese New Year. It leads them to start chatting on a more personal level. Now you would think that just having a casual chat when you've got an hour to live would be stupid, but it makes sense that you would want to keep yourself distracted. If you just keep lamenting over your impending death, you will run out of shit with which to fill your pants. It's actually very well done because it gives both Mimic and Rogue a chance to reflect on how their powers make them feel like meat puppets that act only as mediums for the powers of others. It's probably something they don't give a second thought when they know they're not going to die. In a situation like this, it's nice to have that kind of reflection and Gage depicts it perfectly here.
While reflections are all well and good, there's still plenty of incentive for the X-men to find a way to avoid having to rebuild a sizable chunk of their school (again). The next few scenes go over some failed attempts to eliminate or at least slow down the impending explosion. Gambit tries using his powers. Chamber tries using his. Even Husk gets involved, which is saying a lot since her character gets less attention than Todd Palin. All their efforts are failures. Rogue, Mimic, and Weapon Omega are still ticking time bombs. But hey, at least they're trying. It's not like they're working for the New Orleans Saints and need to use torn ACLs as incentives.
In between these failed attempts, the plot with Rogue and Magneto continues to linger. Now I could go on and on about how fucked that story is and why it should be shot like a deer at Ted Nugent's house, but I'll pop some Xanex and hold off. While Rogue is pondering his wrinkly ass, she has a nice talk with Toad. To this point Toad has been the institute's whipping boy, but it's easy to forget that he was once a member of the Brotherhood. He offers some nice insight to Rogue, explaining how Magneto may be an asshole but he's an asshole you feel safe around. He comes off as an abused dog at times, but he makes a point and gives Rogue something to think about. If it makes her panties wet, well then that's just one less meal we all have to worry about.
Beast and Rachel eventually do come up with a possible solution if you can call it that. It involves putting all three of them into a psychically induced coma. That way their bodies aren't active enough to blow up. In terms of solutions, this is right up there with amputation and cutting meat out of your diet. It's not a life worth living and it's a pretty shitty solution if ever there was once. Again, Beast does little to distract readers from the massive douche-bag he's been in recent years. Naturally, Rogue, Mimic, and Weapon Omega don't agree with that shit. They feel there has to be a better way than a coma. I'm pretty sure if you get a homeless guy drunk at three in the morning, he could come up with a better idea.
Eventually, they do come up with a better idea (resisting the urge to give Beast the finger). Rather than knock themselves into a coma, they propose another power swap. This time they intend to essentially short each other out so to speak. It's like plugging a vibrator into a transformer. It seems like a good idea, but you know it's gonna short something out. Since Beast can't come up with anything else, he allows them to give it a shot and wouldn't you know it? The shit works! Rogue and Mimic are no longer walking time bombs. They no longer have to worry about not living long enough to piss on Dick Cheney's grave. However, their original problem isn't solved. Weapon Omega is still set to blow. So essentially, they're right back to wear they started.
Eventually, Weapon Omega makes the shitty choice to allow someone to put him into a coma. It's not a choice he takes lately and he clearly doesn't like it. But it's a choice that has to be done if he doesn't want to...you know, blow the fuck up. Rachel offers to make it quick, but since Mimic is his friend he offers to copy Rachel's powers and do the deed himself. It's a very dramatic moment between two friends. I'm sure it's a moment that someone out there will turn into slash fanfiction, but in this instance it's more than understandable. These two guys are buddies. It's not a pleasant moment when one of them has to put the other in a coma without a good batch of heroin and Christos Gage captures it perfectly.
When all is said and done, Weapon Omega is effectively neutralized. Beast, probably in an effort to make up for his shitty ideas, contains him in a special stasis tube that looks way too much like a coffin. Now that Weapon Omega's fate is essentially in limbo, it leaves Mimic with some fucked up choices. Rogue, being in a good mood after finding out she's not going to die, consoles Mimic and offers him a shot at the Jean Grey Institute. Since he has nowhere else to go and his buddy is here, it seems like the most fitting place. Plus he doesn't have any gray hairs on his balls so if he can get flirty with Rogue, maybe he can put an end to that bullshit relationship. Besides, Cyclops's Extinction Team has a mimic of their own in Hope. Since Wolverine can't stand the thought of his dick not being as big as Cyclops's, he has to have one too and now they do. And just in time for Avengers vs. X-men no less! I'd call that an bittersweet win if not quite epic.
X-men Legacy has taken on all sorts of tones over it's illustrious history. Going all the way back to Mike Carey's visionary run, this series has been everything from character focused soap opera to a deep space adventure complete with aliens that look like giant pubic lice. A big part of X-men Legacy's appeal is the wide range of awesome it provides. The last arc provided a well-scripted brawl with Exodus. This arc is very different in that it doesn't involve enemies or fighting. It involves a more personal touch. There was some action, but most of it was in the previous issue. This issue had mostly talking, planning, and lamenting over the possibility of blowing up worse than Mel Gibson in a synagog. It wasn't as wildly entertaining as previous issues, but what it lacked in action it made up for with the personal touch.
The biggest strength of this issue was the heart. Mimic and Weapon Omega are buddies. They both didn't ask to become walking time bombs. Mimic wanted desperately to save his friend, but in the end Weapon Omega was willing to make the necessary sacrifice to avoid becoming that bomb. It made for an emotional yet open ended story that could definitely be revisited down the line. The Jean Grey Institute even yielded a new instructor out of the conflict. With Avengers vs. X-men set to link up with this series, it couldn't have come at a better time. While the emotion with Mimic and Weapon Omega was well done, the stuff with Rogue seemed a bit underplayed. Her obsessing over whether or not to call Magneto got old several issues ago. For a relationship that is sickening on a necrophiliac level, it's been dragged out way too fucking much.
The variety offered by X-men Legacy continues to be a great appeal. Christos Gage has worked in more than his share in his brief run. He's had the kind of mindless action that ADD first graders would enjoy and the kind of heartfelt drama that gives Twilight fans pussy boners. Now that X-men Legacy is poised to tie in with Avengers vs. X-men, it'll be interesting to see how Gage handles this series. If this issue is any indication, it shows he has the range to cover both personal stories and stories that involve blowing shit up. I give X-men Legacy #265 a 4 out of 5. Shit didn't blow up here, but if you're a lover of bromance stories or stories with gay connotations then this comic is for you! Nuff said.