Strap on your rubber boots, X-men fans, because the shit is about to get deeper. You've heard me go on many drunken rants about this topic all year. I only remember parts of those rants, but I rant with good reason. After Secret Wars, Marvel went from having Cyclops form peaceful assemblies in Washington DC to becoming the most hated person in the Marvel universe who isn't a clone of Spider-Man. It's a situation that involves so much WTF that no amount of drunken rants can do it justice.
Well today, Marvel finally announced that this gaping oversight that has strained my ability for drunken rants is going to be addressed in an upcoming series called Death of X. Doesn't sound ominous at all, does it? Well, here are some details and I think I speak for every X-men fan when I say I'm clenching my asshole accordingly.
Continuing its steady stream of new series reveals, Marvel Comics has announced a new X-Men series -- "Death of X."
Announced via EW, the four-issue series comes from writers Charles Soule and Jeff Lemire and artist Aaron Kuder and will answer a question X-Fans have been asking for months: What happened during the 8-month gap after "Secret Wars"? All that's known so far is that Cyclops was involved in a massive war with the Inhumans -- a war that cost him his life and reputation.
"We’ll definitely see some characters who have been missing in action since the series launch,” Lemire told EW. "We’ll answer the question of where certain mutants have been, and what’s happened to them. Cyclops is the big one, he’s the one we’ve said was dead and that’s all we’ve really said. His death was very controversial, so obviously that’ll be a big part of the story we’re telling here"
"Death of X" was first announced in March, when Marvel debuted an enigmatic teaser image with a Fall 2016 date. The new artwork, featuring a screaming Cyclops against a background of mutants and Inhumans, incorporates the original's "Death of X" logo into its design.
The event's name has already inspired a month of "Death of X"-themed variant covers from Marvel; throughout July, art depicting the final moments of 20 different mutants will grace the covers of Marvel's releases.
"Death of X" arrives in October.
So what do we make of this? Well, I suck at predicting the future. If I didn't, I'd have made a fuckton of money in the stock market by now. So I'm not going to assume too much. However, I think there are some telling clues based on all the shit that has been going on in the X-men comics.
More than anything else, All-New X-men and Extraordinary X-men have belabored the point that Cyclops is evil. Storm even gave a big fucking speech about how evil Cyclops is and how horrible his deeds were. Without knowing those deeds, drunks like me had to assume way too much. Did he bang another vindictive telepath or something? Did he shit in Spider-Man's garden? It's hard to say, sober or otherwise.
Well, this teaser effectively sends one particular message. First and foremost, he's dead. No clones. No cosmic forces. Cyclops is definitely dead and barring any further time travel shit storms, he'll stay that way. Second, he did something really fucking terrible and did it intentionally. Worst, he did it to the Inhumans, who are basically Marvel's prized bitches at the moment. Nothing they do is wrong. Hell, the editors at Marvel probably use their farts as air fresheners. So it has to be pretty fucking egregious.
The only logical conclusion, logical being a loaded term for a drunk, is that Cyclops went full genocidal. There's no other way around it. I should probably put a spoiler alert because it's rare that I'm this confident about a prediction, let alone one I make while sober. Cyclops finds out that the clouds of Inhuman farts are killing and sterilizing mutants. He tries to do something about it. The Inhumans don't do enough. Having just led the mutant race back from the brink, he just snaps because he can't stand to go through more M-Day shit. So he assembles a team to attack the Inhumans head on and he's willing to wipe them the fuck out if it means saving his species. He already lost his mentor, his wife, and his key to Emma's panties to shit like this. He's not dicking around anymore.
Naturally, it goes horribly fucking run because again, Marvel won't let anything happen to their precious Inhumans. It has to go so wrong that Cyclops ends up killing a lot of innocent humans while unleashing M-pox in the process. That means he gets all the blame and he goes down in infamy, probably dying horribly in the process. It's probably the most inglorious way for one of Marvel's most iconic X-men to die, but that's by far the most likely outcome. This is what happens to those who undermine the Inhumans. They die horribly.
Also, it would basically complete the process that Marvel has been doing for years now. Slowly, but steadily, they've been turning Cyclops into a villain. Avengers vs. X-men was a giant leap forward when he killed Xavier, albeit inadvertently. This is the final step in that process. They're basically doing to Cyclops what Breaking Bad did to Walter White. They're turning him from a boy scout into a criminal mastermind. You can't get much worse or out-of-character than genocide so that's what will happen. Mark it down. Etch it in adamantium. There will happen.
Again, I don't usually make predictions with such confidence. I've never been more confident this time because it makes too much sense and will generate too much outrage. That's perfectly in line with Marvel's recent tactics. See Captain America's recent Hydra fiasco for proof of that. It also effectively takes Cyclops off the table, something that Marvel has been working towards for quite some time now, beginning with Avengers vs. X-men. He was the X-men's top dog for many years. As such, he had to suffer a huge fucking downfall. Marvel tends to do that with any character that reaches that kind of success, which is why Peter Parker better watch his fucking back in the next couple years.
It's not entirely doom and gloom though. Keep in mind, there's still another Cyclops running around. The plot involving the time-displaced X-men is still ongoing. So if what Cyclops does is so horrible and destructive, that's fine. They can undo that shit courtesy of the O5's impact on the timeline. That impact is likely going to be part of another major X-men event down the line. It probably won't occur for a few years, but this definitely raises the stakes. That's why it has to be horrific. That's why it has to be so awful that it'll enrage Cyclops fans and X-men fans on every possible level. Outrage breeds attention. Attention breeds interest. Interest breeds sales. It's marketing on a level that even a drunk can understand.
So bookmark this post and come back to it later this year. I'm very confident that I'll vindicated. I won't make any guarantees. I don't make those while sober. Ever. However, I'm as certain as any drunk can be that Death of X will have Cyclops committing the worst possible atrocity he can commit and it'll be done in a way that completes the utter assassination of his character, paving the way for his teen counterpart to take over. Nuff said!