Thursday, June 14, 2012
X-men Legacy #268 - Ball Busting Awesome
What is it about tough, mean women that could snap your neck with their twat if they were so inclined? For most high school, I actively avoided the individuals I knew were capable of kicking my ass. It's simple human nature. You see someone you know can beat the shit out of you and you're biologically wired to clench your asshole and sprint full speed in the opposite direction. But for some reason, the women I knew were capable of kicking my ass every bit as well as the starting linebacker of the football team with anger management issues often drew me in like Homer Simpson to a chocolate factory. And I know I'm not alone. I would make an educated guess that tough women account for new fewer than 30 percent of all masturbatory fantasies by sexually frustrated young men. It's not healthy and it's horribly impractical to want to bone a woman that could snap your dick off if you gave her a reason. Yet for the same reason that women want to fuck the motorcycle gang members with neck tattoos and outstanding arrest warrants, men want to fuck the tough girls.
X-men Legacy has it's share of tough, hard-nosed women that will make your balls shrivel and your dick harden at the same time. It's confusing to the body, but like rubbing cocaine into an open wound you just can't help but enjoy it. One character that has really grown into a world class scrotum slayer is Frenzy. I admit before Age of X I didn't know shit about Frenzy. But Mike Carey with the help of Cyclops's penis made her relevant. Since then, she's become awesome in a way that gives X-men Legacy a distinct flare. She's still as mean and as tough as she was when she was an Acolyte, but now she's the equivalent of that hardass gym instructor at the Jean Grey Institute that all the students dread and all the boys work into their S&M fantasies.
So far, Frenzy has played a small yet memorable role in the events of Avengers vs. X-men. While she didn't run off with the rest of the Jean Grey Institute staff to take on the Avengers, she was the one that picked a fight with the Avengers snooping around the school by talking trash. Like Ray Lewis stuck in traffic, her mouth might as well be an omega level mutation. She ignited the fight at the Jean Grey Institute and that battle led more X-men into the conflict. So what does she do now that the Phoenix Force has arrived and set up shop in five X-men? Aside from soaking her panties at the sight of a cosmic Cyclops, that's part of the story behind X-men Legacy #268.
This issue marks the first tie-in of X-men Legacy after the events of Avengers vs. X-men #5. Now armed with the Phoenix Force, the Phoenix Five as they are now called (still sounds like a gay European boy band) have started making their mark on the world. And by making their mark, I mean carving it out onto the scrotum of the whole planet while they all kick and scream. Their first decree as the new harbors of god-like power...outlaw war. I admit I would first decree free boob jobs for all women and free penile implants for men, but that's just me. We see first hand how the Phoenix Five travel to war torn parts of the world and forcibly get people to stop fighting that simply don't know any other way to kill a boring afternoon. X-men Legacy opens up in Africa where some renegade militias think women and children are target practice and rape is an Olympic sport (I only wish that was a joke). So it's actually really refreshing to see the Phoenix Five come in and tell them to cut that shit out and find better ways to occupy their time. Maybe start a softball team or something.
But as powerful as the Phoenix Five are, they can't cleanse an entire continent of violence, war, and shit that goes boom. Some tenacious douche-bags will find a way to cling to their guns, not unlike republicans in Texas. This is what the Stepford Cuckoos explain to Frenzy as she's flown over an undisclosed part of Africa that might as well be Jeffery Dahlmer's backyard. She's told to land in Africa, hunt down the assholes that insist on spitting in the face of the Phoenix Five when they say no more war, and make them wish they weren't born with testicles. It's an easy enough job for Frenzy, but as soon as she lands in an impoverished African village she comes across a hulked out militiaman beating the shit out of his wife. While I've been accused of disrespecting women in the past, there's some shit even I'm not fucked up enough to smell. Frenzy doesn't care for it either and seeing this brings up the first of many flashbacks that reveal that (and I know this may shock many of you) the father that raised this future acolyte of Magneto was kind of a dick.
Frenzy is not gentle with the man. She grabs his arms, breaks them, and emasculates him in a way that could be patented as part of sexual reassignment surgery. I always take a perverse pleasure in seeing villains like Dr. Doom, Thanos, and Loki get humiliated by superheroes. But I get multi-orgasmic when guys who probably exist in the real world to some degree get the fuck beat out of them by a beautiful woman with more muscle in her labia than most men have in their entire bodies. The man clearly doesn't appreciate it or the new order of peace that the Phoenix Five are imposing, but that's his problem and if he thinks he can defy a cosmic force than more power to him. It just means his ass gets torched that much faster.
Thanks to Frenzy's little lesson in combating spousal abuse, the women who she spared a round of Rick James foreplay decides to help Frenzy track the rest of the militia. That's pretty bold for a woman with no superpowers and is less equipped to take on a militia than a group pf stoned hippies. Along the way she tries to get to know Frenzy. Because who doesn't want to know more about a woman that can snap the bones of any man that dares question how undercooked the meatloaf is? She quickly surmises that she has some experience with overbearing men that love to beat the shit out of women. At least women (well, those not living in countries run by religious nuts) can divorce a husband. You can't divorce a father and he just happens to be the asshole that taught Frenzy how to take a punch.
Most of the hunt for the militia base turns into one long strong of flashbacks. They really offer nothing to the mission that's supposed to contribute to the ongoing is supposed to be ongoing events surrounding Avengers vs. X-men and the Phoenix Five. They just tell more of Frenzy's backstory. That's not a bad thing though. Frenzy is one of those characters who has been in the X-books since fucking 1986 when Michael Jackson was still somewhat black yet her life has never been explored. It's rather odd timing to do it now, but I guess being on the hunt for a bunch of women-beating militiamen is as appropriate a time as any.
The story isn't too radical. Hell, some of it could be a template for an old episode of Jerry Springer. Frenzy came from a military family. Her father was pissed off that he couldn't beat the shit out of his drill sergeant so he took it out on her. He also didn't care for girls in the family. He saved all his pride for his son, who ended up getting himself killed while serving. Like any rational man with a drinking problem, Frenzy's father took it out on her. At this point, Frenzy didn't care for that shit anymore. Her powers manifested and the first thing she did with them is punch a hole right through her father's chest. It's the kind of shit most girls can only fantasize about every time their father takes away their cell phone or refuses to let them wear a thong to school. It looks hardcore, but it's a bit cliched. So Frenzy is pissed off because her dead was an asshole. It's an age old excuse that Freud himself loved to explore when he wasn't doing massive amounts of cocaine. It's gripping in some ways, but not very unique. When a comic character's origin seems ripped from an old Snoop Dogg album, it's just not that memorable.
Once the flashbacks are over, Frenzy and her guide, Angelique, find the milita base where all the guns and war-loving douche-bags are holding up. The action here is pretty standard. They start shooting. Frenzy brushes them aside. Then she busts their balls. It's as exciting as it sounds. Don't get me wrong. It's satisfying to see a bunch of woman-beating, gun-toating militiamen get their asses kicked. It just isn't all that flashy or well-developed. It does have one memorable moment though. Just as Frenzy is in a position to rip the head off another testosterone-loving thug, she sees Angelique's reaction. And rather than finish the job, she lets the guy mull over the collapse of his scrotum. It can be seen as both an act of compassion and cruelty. It also shows that Frenzy, despite her history, isn't the complete asshole her father tried to beat into her. That along with the power of Cyclops's penis makes her a hero.
In the end she succeeds with her mission. She destroys the militia and their guns. She then meets up with the Cuckoos, who plan to warp the minds of the militia and the people they ravaged. While Frenzy has no problem with them mind-raping a bunch of heartless thugs (I don't either to be honest), she tells them to not make anyone in the villiage forget. She gives this seemingly honorable speech about how the trauma they suffered is something that should be remembered because it's part of who they are. It seems to make sense, but I have a big fucking problem with that.
We all experience trauma in our lives. Some is worse than others. Sometimes it involves being caught by your grandmother with a box of tissues, a bottle of hand lotion, and a Sears catalog (my grandmother didn't care for Victoria's Secret). Sometimes it involves living in a world where being shot at, raped, and blown up are a fact of life. It's the kind of fucked up trauma that need not be remembered. I know some say it builds character. I say it builds character in the same way tequila builds hand-eye coordination. If this issue was supposed to have a special message about learning from experiences, it's a fucked up lesson. There are experiences and there are traumas. We can do without one, but not the other and it shouldn't take a drunk like me to figure out which.
Like a French hooker that hasn't shaved in a year, I won't beat around the bush. This issue didn't really contribute much to the grand scheme of things for Avengers vs. X-men. While it did nicely factor in the events of Avengers vs. X-men #5, it was essentially an isolated story that was mixed with a character story. Don't get me wrong. That's not a bad thing. Frenzy is a character that really hasn't been fleshed out despite her recent rise to prominence, courtesy of Cyclops's penis. The backstory here is fairly solid. We find out where Frenzy came from, why she's so pissed off all the time, and why she doesn't hesitate to beat the shit out of testosterone junkie douche-bags with guns. There's a nice little moment at the end as well, but it falls a bit hallow when you smoke a few joints and really think about it.
In terms of tie-ins, X-men Legacy has been a mixed performer compared to the other X-books. Recent issues have been pretty solid and this one definitely had the potential to be, but it just falls a bit flat. Frenzy's tough history feels a bit cliched. Having an abusive dad and wanting to kick his ass isn't much of a superhero origin story. It's every third episode of Dr. Phil. Christos Gage still manages to make it compelling enough for readers to wan to care about Frenzy. It's a personal story that is essentially a minute snippet of the greater changes the Phoenix Five are making. While it's an important story to tell, it just comes off as too predictable in some areas and too rushed in others.
It's still a solid book that still fits into Avengers vs. X-men, albeit loosely. If you're a fan of Frenzy or just like reading about women who can crush your balls with her eyelids, you'll find plenty to enjoy about this book. The action is a bit light while the personal elements are fairly enjoyable at the very least. It's a book you could probably skip and not miss a beat with the rest of the Avengers vs. X-men event. It's still a solid enough read to help pass time while your taking a shit. I give X-men Legacy #268 a 3 out of 5. Make no mistake. Frenzy is a kick-ass character and it's only now that she's starting to realize her potential. The over-bloated balls of every douche-bag with a penis should take notice. Nuff said!