Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Scanned Thoughts: Uncanny X-men #22
I like to think of myself as a pretty patient guy in most circumstances. Sure, when it takes 10 minutes for the dipshit at Starbucks to get me my espresso, I’m going to get pissed. But one of the benefits of being a stoner is that it’s easy to get distracted and think about other crazy shit. This has come in real handy with Uncanny X-men for the past few months. Going all the way back to the first issue, there has been this ongoing plot about Sentinels attacking mutants. On more than one occasion, this plot has been abandoned and derailed for less interesting shit like Dormammu. Other more pressing plots also got in the way, namely X-men: Battle of the Atom. Now the story that began before anyone knew who the name Cliven Bundy promises to finally give us some answers. The Mysterio-wannabe finally spoke in the previous issue and Beast, taking a break from his role as big fuzzy douche-bag, claims to have figured out who he is. Uncanny X-men #22 promises to finally reward our patience. But if it behaves anything like that dipshit at Starbucks, I’m still going to be pissed.
Seeing as how this whole plot with Sentinels and SHIELD has gone off-track more than the last Tim Burton movie, it’s only fitting that we get another random side-plot. But I think this would only qualify as a partially random because it’s following a story that has been unfolding alongside this Sentinel plot, namely Magneto’s rescue of Dazzler from Madripoor. He succeeded in the previous issue, taking Blob down a few sizes in the process and not in the Jenny Craig way either. Now he has brought her back to the New Xavier School where Triage is there to heal her. She quickly returns to her beautiful pop star diva self, but she’s fucking pissed off and ready to take it out on someone. Whereas most pretty girls would cope by banging their ex-boyfriend’s brother, she plans on doing something almost as destructive. Pissed off beautiful women tend to both terrify and arouse me so I’m fully in favor of Dazzler getting in on the action.
She’ll have plenty to work with because the action in this case is pretty one-sided. The whole SHIELD helicarrier has turned against them. Now it’s attacking the Jean Grey Institute instead of just providing a badass way of getting around and wasting taxpayer money. Maria Hill and the rest of the Jean Grey Institute is naturally losing their shit. Beast urges everyone to evacuate the Jean Grey Institute and Maria Hill keeps trying to solve the problem by yelling at it, not unlike the way my old driving instructor tried to make teenagers better drivers. It works just as well because the Mysterio-wannabe makes it very clear that he’s the one in control. Hell, for all we know, he’s been jerking off since the first shot was fired.
Then it actually gets even worse. Maria Hill keeps trying to regain control of the situation, trying a different tactic besides yelling. She notices Agent Dazzler, who is actually Mystique, casually slip away. Really, the head of the most powerful security agency on the fucking planet just let one of her top agents slip away when she was standing right next to her moments ago. If I were a tax payer in the Marvel universe, I would be so pissed that I might actually consider voting for Ted Cruz. It’s a weak way to get her out of the picture, but that’s not what makes things even worse.
Apparently, SHIELD took a page from the Pentagon and found even more ways to waste taxpayer money because somehow the helicarrier summons an army of Sentinels to attack. It just wouldn’t be an all-out attack on the X-men if killer robots weren’t involved. That’s like a basic law of physics in the Marvel universe. I want to say that the Mysterio-wannabe is really going for overkill here, but I don’t think that’s possible when a government agency is involved. If the military can spend 20 billion dollars on a jet fighter nobody wants, then surely it can afford an attack of killer robots on this scale. Besides, it has only been about six months since the last Sentinel attack on the X-men. I don’t know if Sentinels can get blue blues, but why risk it?
At first, it looks like we’re going to get an exact repeat of the battle from X-men: Battle of the Atom. The X-men come together, rip the Sentinels to shreds, and Wolverine finds a way to blame it all on Cyclops. I admit I was honestly expecting this. But then, it takes a very different turn and not in the way that involves time travel or psychic mind tricks for once. The Sentinels and the Helicarrier stop attacking. I probably need to say that again. The killer robots stop trying to kill the X-men. Just saying that feels weirder than explaining to my grandmother how I got a tattoo of a nipple on my left butt cheek. But that’s exactly what happens. Not only that, the helicarrier stops attacking the X-men and starts shooting at the Sentinels. The X-men and Maria Hall are as confused as I am, although probably not quite as stoned. Even the Mysterio-wannabe is confused and plenty pissed. It’s probably because he’s not sufficiently stoned.
The reason for this has to do with another forgotten side-plot that helped kick-start this arc to begin with. Remember our old friend Hijack? The guy who the cops once shot because he had the audacity to make a bunch of cars honk their horn in an uncrowded parking lot? He got kicked off the team for being stupid enough to use a cell phone that SHIELD could track. I guess he never heard the name Edward Snowden. Well he was more forgotten than the last coach of the Cleveland Browns, but he wasn’t content just jacking cars and turning women’s vibrators against them. He decided to make himself useful again and paid a visit to the Jean Grey Institute just in time to turn the tide of the battle. Now he claims he just came hoping to enroll. I’m pretty sure his real agenda involved finding an opportunity that would allow him to say, “Kiss my ass, Cyclops!”
This is a good example of a story making the right connections. Granted, Hijack got himself kicked off the team in one of the many side-plots that unfolded in this series. It would have been easy to give him the same treatment the New York Yankees gave Alex Rodriguez, but instead he ends playing a critical role. While it’s a fitting connection, it’s also pretty weak. We’re left to assume he just randomly decided somewhere between getting kicked off the team and getting bored with making fat guys chase after their cars that he wanted to be an X-man again. Not saying what he did isn’t badass. It just would have been nice to see more reasons behind it.
With the tide of the battle now firmly on the side of the X-men, Beast finally gets around to helping Cyclops confront the shitty Mysterio cos-player that has been behind this shit. In addition, Emma Frost shows up with Magneto, Magik, and Dazzler. That’s a lot of pissed off blondes to further tip the balance. It ensures the asshole behind this bullshit that has plagued the New Xavier School since the first issue of this series has nowhere to hide and might as well start kicking his own balls. For once, Beast actually makes himself useful and leads Cyclops right to the asshole’s mysterious hidden lair, where Cyclops promptly blasts his ass. I don’t think there’s a more satisfying blast that doesn’t involve a money shot in a porno with Jessica Alba.
But it gets even more satisfying than that, as if my penis wasn’t overworked enough. In addition to revealing the badly dressed mastermind, Beast also reveals that he discovered what had been fucking with his powers. Apparently, someone fed him some nano-Sentinels and they have been fucking with his powers, meaning he’ll have a hell of a time shitting those out later on along with Emma and Magik. It’s actually a much more satisfying explanation than blaming that shit on the Phoenix, which gets more blame than the President these days. It’s also really fucking overdue. But again, I’m a patient guy. I willing to save that special bag of blow for just the right moment.
That moment only becomes even more satisfying, warranting even more blow, when the identity of the asshole behind all these bullshit Sentinel attacks is revealed. And low and behold, Beast is involved. Specifically, it’s Dark Beast, the Age of Apocalypse version of Beast who has been MIA since the Dark Angel Saga. I couldn’t have picked a more appropriate asshole to carry out this kind of douche-baggery without hiring Bryan Cranston to play Lex Luthor. He has the means, the balls, and the assholery to do something like this.
Granted, his reasons for doing it are somewhat bland. He just claims he hates the X-men. Seriously, why can’t this guy just do what Kardashian haters do and bitch about them on a message board with normal people? But I digress. It’s still very fitting and it gives Cyclops a chance to maim Beast like I’m sure he’s wanted to do. He even made it easy for him because apparently he needed that goofy suit to keep himself alive. He had been experimenting on his own body. I won’t say it’s tragic because the asshole deserved it. I’ll just say he should have just stuck to bulimia and botox.
Dark Beast is now dead and/or comatose. Whichever it is, it’s way less than he deserves. There’s still the matter of a pissed off Maria Hill, who hasn’t forgotten her pussy boner for arresting Cyclops. This is where it gets a little awkward because Cyclops rightly points out that this shit happened under her watch. All these attacks on innocent mutants were carried out using SHIELD resources and she didn’t do a damn thing about it.
Now in her defense, she didn’t know how resourceful Dark Beast was. But she was also the one that decided she would focus all her energy on arresting Cyclops and possibly boning him if the situation permitted. By doing that instead of focusing on the actual killer robots that were hurting people, she basically let this shit happen. So in that sense, her demanding Cyclops to turn herself in would be OJ Simpson demanding that the cops who arrested him clean out the blood stains from his white Ford Bronco. It makes for a difficult and somewhat unrefined conversation. But this is one instance where I don’t think much needs to be said. They all fucked themselves over in some way and it’s probably best give their assholes a rest.
While in the spirit of tying up so many loose ends, it’s only fitting that we add one more to the heap. This one feels like a bonus because it involves Dazzler. She’s understandably pissed about what happened to her. For once, Maria Hill is pretty forgiving. She doesn’t blame Dazzler for all the shit Mystique did while disguised as her. That’s probably the most reasonable thing she has done since she stopped banging Tony Stark. But Dazzler isn’t having it. SHIELD was inept enough to let Mystique abduct her and they didn’t do shit to save her. The X-men were the ones who saved her. That’s all the proof she needs that she’s not cut out for government work. She’s an X-man. It’s a beautiful moment. It’s not clear what her plans are, but I think she’s already made herself comfortable with the other blondes in Cyclops’s New Xavier School. Like Hugh Hefner has shown time and again, there’s no such thing as having too many pretty blondes.
It’s a beautiful thing when gaping holes are finally filled. Whether it’s a pothole in the middle of a highway or a gangbang with Jenna Jameson, there’s something about it that’s worth celebrating. Sure, it got sidetracked. Sure, it knocked over a few signs and maybe ran over a few pedestrians, but it got to the final destination. Everything from the identity of the Mysterio-wannabe to the reason for these broken powers got explained in one issue. My patience was rewarded and Cyclops’s team has been rewarded with another hot blonde on their team. That’s like a win and a free blowjob from the cheerleading squad. That’s not to say the impact still wasn’t somewhat weak after all the delays and side-plots. But like driving from Boston to Tijuana armed with Donald Trump’s credit card, it was still satisfying. Uncanny X-men #22 gets a 9 out of 10. So now SHIELD’s credibility is fucked once again, the Jean Grey Institute has been nearly blown up, and Cyclops has another pretty girl on his team. I won’t say it’s a typical Tuesday in the Marvel universe. I’ll just say it’s more productive than usual. Nuff said!