Wednesday, May 21, 2014
Scanned Thoughts: Uncanny X-men #21
Being really stubborn is one of those traits most people think is one prolonged dick move. A roommate refuses to sweep up the condom wrappers outside his room, a girl refuses to stop shaving her leg in the kitchen sink, or a teacher won’t let anyone chew gum during an exam are just some traits that reinforce this notion. But there are times when being stubborn can be a good thing. The founding fathers were stubborn in getting the fuck away from Great Britain. Martin Luther King Jr. was stubborn in pissing off racists. Pamela Anderson was stubborn when her doctors said she couldn’t possibly make her boobs any bigger. Plenty of good has come from this attitude because sometimes, people are actually justified. Now I’m not saying Cyclops has been right in everything he has done since Avengers vs. X-men, but he comes off as the kind of guy who is stubborn for the right reasons while Maria Hill comes off as the obsessive bitch who won’t even entertain the possibility that there are more pressing issues than throwing Cyclops back in jail. Maybe it’s not fair to call her stubborn. In the previous issue, she revealed that she secretly wants to bone Cyclops. I’m not going to say that’s wrong. I’m just going to say it doesn’t make her sympathetic. It just makes her horny. I don’t expect anyone to address their horniness in Uncanny X-men #21, but I do expect everyone involve to keep being stubborn.
Regardless of whether Cyclops is on the warpath for the right reasons, he arrives at the Jean Grey Institute already horribly fucked. He doesn’t get a chance to be reasonable, like that would do anything against the former friends who still lump him with Dr. Doom. His powers go haywire again and he starts randomly shooting up the place, which I’m sure the Jean Grey Institute does daily drills on anyway. As far as I’m concerned, he’s just skipping a step because I doubt Beast would have helped him anyways without giving him too much shit. But then Magik’s powers go haywire too so they can’t just say Cyclops was trolling them, although I’m sure they’ll still use it as an excuse to bust his balls. The Hank McCoys of the world can never have too many.
By the same token, Storm can never have too many opportunities to unleash the full force of nature up the asshole of whoever happens to be pissing her off. Given that she hasn’t been all that forgiving to Cyclops or Magik either, she doesn’t hold back. By that, I mean she ends the fight with the same effort that I put into making my bed in the morning. It seems a bit uneven, especially for two mutants as powerful as Cyclops or Magik. But keep in mind, they’re fucked up and can’t control themselves. That’s like having Iron Man run into a war zone naked. Some of their greatest strengths have been nullified. That makes them to Storm what baby seals are to Ted Nugent. Some might have a problem with Storm being callous in how she handles Cyclops and Magik. I’m not saying I’m okay with it. But I don’t have to agree to admit that she was still pretty damn badass.
Now Cyclops and Magik are unconscious and subdued. If ever there was an opportunity to turn Cyclops over to the authorities or at least tattoo a dick on his face, this is it. There are so many sadistically cruel things they could to pay them back for starting a mutant revolution, protecting mutants being harassed by the authorities, sheltering the O5 X-men when they were under siege from the future Brotherhood of Mutants, and…actually, those are all bad examples. I’m just saying that if this were a frat party, Cyclops and Magik would be lucky to wake up with their eyebrows still intact.
While I’m sure Beast and Storm are entertaining all the devious possibilities, they don’t get a chance because Dazzler (who is still Mystique in disguise) shows up on the front lawn of the Jean Grey Institute with an entire SHIELD Hellicarrier and a very pissed off Maria Hill right behind her. She doesn’t start barking orders the way Maria Hill would. I’m sure Maria Hill would probably demand that she be in a locked room with Cyclops for an hour with no cameras and some lube. I guess she figured that Dazzler would be more polite about it and the X-men would be less inclined to get pissed off. It might be the first tactically brilliant move Maria Hill has made since admitting that Cyclops makes her feel all hot and bothered between her legs.
It’s a tense situation at the Jean Grey Institute. It’s also been tense in Madripoor, albeit for a very different reason. Blob, who we learned got his powers back with the help of MGH in the previous issue, is finding out the hard way that he sucks at taking drugs. He’s got a bad case of withdrawal that probably involves him thinking that scorpions are crawling out of his urethra. He was having fun, getting into a bar fight with someone who probably just looked at him for a nanosecond too long. Then like a crack addict who just smoked his last rock, he gets sick as hell and needs more. For a guy this big, he sure is a lightweight. Any experienced drug user knows that only a dipshit takes the last dose before hitting his dealer up again. Only a dipshit would start throwing up the moment those scorpions get too hostile so I’m guessing Blob would be a real buzzkill on a trip to Tijuana.
Since he can’t get a hole of Mystique, he goes straight to the source, which happens to be Dazzler. Now this isn’t entirely unrealistic. There are a lot of high end sources that utilize pretty blonds. As anyone who has ever willingly eaten a life tarantula to get their attention can attest, they get away with way more shit than anyone else. Being a lightweight drug addict in serious withdrawal, there’s a lot of fucked up shit he could do to her. Any pretty blond that has passed out drunk at a frat party knows they’re lucky if they wake up with the same panties on.
But Magneto steps in before Blob can do anything that would make him a spokesman for roofies. Where the fuck did Magneto come from? Why is he showing up after leaving Madripoor on such a shitty note? I have no fucking clue. But he basically gives Blob the kind of pep talk that the people at DARE only think they give teenagers. There’s even a nice little flashback to an early panel of Uncanny X-men that shows Magneto working alongside Blob when he wasn’t just a degenerate drug addict. Unlike the DEA, he spares Blob further indignation and lets him go. He’s more concerned about Dazzler because he’s just that nice a guy. Then again, when a drug addict is the only other comparison, that’s not saying much.
Thanks to Magneto, Dazzler wakes up and she’s understandably confused. The last thing she probably remembers is accepting a cup of coffee from Agent Coulson, who happened to be Mystique. Now she’s the posterboy for roofies because that one dick move landed her in a coma and made her Mystique’s personal Jessie Pinkman for making MGH. She’s obviously confused, but Mystique isn’t around to lie to her. Magneto already knows the full story because Mystique foolishly told him, thinking he would be on board. She didn’t think that a guy who survived the holocaust would have a problem with using a mutant for a sick experiment to make MGH. Seriously, I’d love to know what her logic was for that.
Mystique has no idea how her shitty logic has failed her. She and Maria Hill are locked in a tense standoff with the X-men, who are somewhat reluctant to turn Cyclops and Magik over to SHIELD, if only because it wouldn’t give them a chance to tattoo a dick on their faces. Beast insists that he be allowed to analyze them first, which I suspect is just code for wanting to stick breast implants into Cyclops. Mystique, still trying to use the influence of a pretty blond, says that’s a shitty idea. But Maria Hill must be in a merciful mood because she gives Beast one hour to do what he needs to do. Should be enough time to stuck at least one breast implant into Cyclops, right?
Neither of them end up getting their chance because that mysterious Mysterio rip-off who has been behind the Sentinel attacks for way too fucking long finally makes his move. He even actually talks. Hell, it could be a women or a transvestite under that helmet. We have no way of knowing. But the fact that he/she/it/they are finally saying something is the first non-teaser we’ve had of this asshole since he showed up. And I’m guessing it’s a he because he has some big fucking balls to basically turn the whole SHIELD helicarrier against them. He could have just sat back and let them assume Cyclops just attacked them to be a dick. But now he has to show that he’s capable of fucking with them as much as he is with Cyclops. It’s not smart, but fuck if it doesn’t send a message.
All this upheaval is completely lost on Emma Frost and the rest of the students at the New Xavier School. Cyclops and Magik left them behind because bringing students along on a trip to the Jean Grey Institute, where the entire staff wants Cyclops crucified and boiled in acid, was seen as inappropriate. He figured that leaving them with his ex-girlfriend/ex-stripper/ex-White Queen of the Hellfire club was safer. I honestly think it’s a toss-up here. But even though she doesn’t have her powers at full strength, she still has a distinct feeling that something is going horribly wrong. I don’t think it takes a psychic to make that assumption. In the Marvel Universe, that’s as safe a bet as Peyton Manning beating the Cleveland Browns. But there’s something else they notice in addition to Emma’s sneaking suspicion. We don’t find out what it is, but knowing they’re luck, it’s probably a drone meant to spy on Emma Frost in the shower. At least, that’s what I would use a drone for.
Shit at the Jean Grey Institute continues to go bad. More of the Jean Grey Institute staff joins the battle, including Firestar, who is only wearing a bathrobe. It shows that while the institute may prepare for being attacked, they probably don’t prepare for a full-blown attack by SHIELD. Knowing Maria Hill, I’m surprised that doesn’t happen more often. But during the attack, Beast somehow finds time to study Cyclops and Magik. And somehow, he is able to glean from this information who is behind this shit. The Mysterio rip-off even recognizes Beast, saying he’s ready to teach him a lesson. I normally don’t root for villains, especially ones that wear fish bowls on their heads. But given how many lessons Hank McCoy needs to learn for his shit lately, I’ll make an exception. It has me even more excited who this villain is. If he hates Hank McCoy, he can’t be too bad.
It had to happen sooner or later. Someone had to outsmart Cyclops, the Jean Grey Institute, and SHIELD. I say it had to happen because these people put themselves in the kind of situations that places a big target on their backs and an invitation just above their assholes. For nearly a dozen issues now, Cyclops has been looking for a hidden enemy controlling the Sentinels and Maria Hill has had her head so far up her ass that she didn’t think it was possible that her helicarrier could be taken over a second time. Was Battle of the Atom really that long ago? Either time really does flow differently in the Marvel universe or Maria Hill needs to cut back on the weed. But after so many teasers and side-tracks, we finally get a hint as to who the Mysterio knock-off might be. I don’t want to jump to conclusions without going on a few more drinking benders, but it finally feels like Uncanny X-men has a legitimate plan that doesn’t just involve the mounting sexual tension between Cyclops and Maria Hill. I give Uncanny X-men #21 an 8 out of 10. It would have been nice to get a little more detail, but I’ve been to enough strip clubs to know it’s not a good idea to get too greedy. And like my uncle said, better a hangover from booze than a concussion from a pissed off bouncer. Nuff said!