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Empyre: X-Men #2

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Blackcyclops
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Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Blackcyclops » 05 Aug 2020, 15:00

That was fun...it’s not groundbreaking but it felt like a fun almost Silver Age style battle romp. And now we get a bad ass final page...
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Tessa1984
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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Tessa1984 » 05 Aug 2020, 17:30

I didn't enjoy this as much as the first issue, the difference in writers was very apparent to me. This involved a lot more humor (or attempted, at least) and that's not always my thing, especially when done like this. Over-the-top usage of cuss words seems just as cheap as excessive drinking jokes, which we saw last week in X-MEN. I like my X-titles melodramatic and if they're going for humor, I prefer it involve a little more thought.

That being said, I still love this cast of characters. It's nice to see this side of Warren for a change. I'm always down for Illyana going ballistic. We didn't see enough of Monet and Madrox. I appreciate Hordeculture sort of. They're a nice idea, just not always well executed I think.

I wonder if Wanda's role as Pretender will be further explored in this series, or if her appearance last issue was just a means to get us zombies?

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Blackcyclops
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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Blackcyclops » 05 Aug 2020, 17:40

Since comics use the $&$!?! Things for cussing instead of actual cusses it always tickles me alil because it allows the mind to put whatever nonsense you want in...thus making them seeing more ridiculous than normal (like Magik calling them asshats for example)...it leaves more to the imagination and it fits those two groups (Magik and that 1 member of Hordeculture) perfectly...

I guess I enjoyed it because the writing was more lively...Magik had more of the personality here that I grew to love under Gillen and others (she did last issue too but way more focus on Warren and I come to realize after that Uncanny X-Men of the 90s re-read, I’m not his biggest fan sometimes)...and Hordeculture as a concept is like something you’d usually get in an Image or something British, it’s absurd but fun...I agree the comic was low on the soap opera and melodrama (so if that’s your go-to, I can see the issue disappointing alot) but I enjoyed it for the almost silly fun of it all...
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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by das_boot » 05 Aug 2020, 18:41

This... again, I feel like I WANTED to like this because of my love for Illyana and Monet. I’ve gone from liking the idea of Hordeculture to actively thinking they may well be the dumbest villains that the X-Men have faced, and that’s saying something.

I liked the end page, and I liked Black Tom avatar, and Illyana was pretty great but like... the rest wasn’t great.
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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by _Rick_ » 05 Aug 2020, 19:20

This is a bit... meh.
Like Tessa, I really felt the difference in writers. Some of their signature writing ticks were in full force: Percy's gratuitous excessive cursing and body horror, Williams overly verbose explanations and weird jokes and Duggan's tendency to make characters a bit over the top. Some of these things worked, other really didn't.

Overall it comes across as a forced tie-in to a company wide event... which is exactly what it is. Black Tom was the best for me (I like how much they've incorporated him into the very fabric of this Krakoa era). Hordeculture came across as a shallow joke to me. Still, I have to disagree with Das on them being the dumbest villains in a world that includes the Hellfire brats. If they're going to be using age as a weird distinctive characteristic for villains, I'd rather them going towards the old rather then the young.

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by norwichchris » 05 Aug 2020, 20:23

I thought it was really good to be honest like the explanation of the Cotati as an invasive plant species and the constant reference to this especially the plant with the Aliens ship growing roots.

This is not going to be a one-sided battle and the X-men have a brutal fight on there hands. The Cotati captain states we retreat and we adapt much like the humans do against the Mutants. Don't really think it is a forced tie-in as it fits with the overall premise of Mutants using plantlike technologies and do want to see Giant Alien Plants vs Giant Krakoan Plants

Also I liked how Magik called all the mutant psychics together to defend Krakoa as if they are one unified nation fighting for there survival. Wonder though once the Zombies are defeated will they arrest Wanda for all her crimes against them and lock her up with Sabretooth?

Although will admit do find Hordeculture being very dumb villains why can't we have poison ivy clones from DC instead make a lot more sense. Yes the Hellfire brats are awful and should just go away somewhere and grow up.

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Oldmanlogan79 » 05 Aug 2020, 22:10

Tessa1984 wrote:
05 Aug 2020, 17:30
I didn't enjoy this as much as the first issue, the difference in writers was very apparent to me. This involved a lot more humor (or attempted, at least) and that's not always my thing, especially when done like this. Over-the-top usage of cuss words seems just as cheap as excessive drinking jokes, which we saw last week in X-MEN. I like my X-titles melodramatic and if they're going for humor, I prefer it involve a little more thought.
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Magnus
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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Magnus » 05 Aug 2020, 22:11

Maybe my perception of Magik is off, but I really felt a lot her dialogue, at least early on, was stuff she'd never say. "I thought these ladies were so @#@$in' rad when they showed up and Cuisinarted that alien... but they obviously suck so hard." I could see someone like Boom Boom or Jubilee saying that, but Magik always struck me as more generally aloof. And yeah, a lot of the 'humor' in general missed the mark for me.

Also, Amahl Farouk...? Well, I guess if they resurrected Jamie Braddock...

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Oldmanlogan79 » 05 Aug 2020, 22:14

buff,Magik!!! shed never say that, worst dialogues ever...
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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Fenix » 06 Aug 2020, 10:23

Honestly, I loved the art and the issue was funny.

However I was expecting the story to feel less lighthearted and more serious, this jokes here and here made me disengage from the plot.

I know this is not exactly a team book but it could have served to create a team roster (Angel, Monet, Madrox... to start) but it was just Magik's show.
Some moments during the issue (like Black Tom joining the fight, his little avatar and the jokes about Angel's wings and the polen...) were spot on and made me laugh, and also Magik showing she is still the Limbo all-mighty Queen and both her demonic person and her eldritch armored self was awesome.

However, the last page left me not only unimpressed but quite disturbed.
What are the moral limits to Krakoa's resurrection protocols?

The Shadow King is beyond any redemption, its primal evil. Resurrecting him is just setting a time bomb and wait to see how it explode. It doesn't make any bloody sense... even if he needed to be resurrected. As far as I know I dont think he can really die. Ever.

I like the new status quo, I really want to see where it goes but I still want to see the Xmen as heroes and seeing characters like the Shadow King around really mess with my idea of what the Xmen was.
I guess I have to surrender to the idea the Xmen is gone and I have to embrace the new reality, no more Xmen... enter Mutantkind/Krakoans! :(

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by norwichchris » 06 Aug 2020, 11:45

I never considered them to be forming a new team as such but felt it was supposed to be a low level scouting mission. This X-book will have more random characters appear.

Think the Shadowing was an artist error as he is technically an entity rather than anormal mutant.

The X-Men don't have any Morales anymore as they believe they have become god's and are immortal.

50/50 with new status quo but waiting to see how it goes.

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by das_boot » 06 Aug 2020, 13:38

Wasn’t Farouk a mutant though? I thought that he was a mutant telepath and that’s why the Shadow King took him as a host?

Edit: also, wasn’t Mastermind just an illusionist? I thought that’s what made both of his daughters more powerful than him, that they were telepaths AND illusionists whereas his were just illusions?
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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Blackcyclops » 06 Aug 2020, 13:57

The X-Men don’t have morals? That’s a fraught and bold statement lol
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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by das_boot » 06 Aug 2020, 14:03

Blackcyclops wrote:
06 Aug 2020, 13:57
The X-Men don’t have morals? That’s a fraught and bold statement lol
Agreed. Don’t get me wrong, I can understand where Chris is coming from to a degree because they certainly seem to have skewed their morals to a “mutants first” agenda as opposed to one of pacifist integration but like... to say they’re immoral when one of their core tenants is that they should kill no human is a bit far from the truth
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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Fenix » 06 Aug 2020, 14:34

das_boot wrote:
06 Aug 2020, 14:03
Blackcyclops wrote:
06 Aug 2020, 13:57
The X-Men don’t have morals? That’s a fraught and bold statement lol
Agreed. Don’t get me wrong, I can understand where Chris is coming from to a degree because they certainly seem to have skewed their morals to a “mutants first” agenda as opposed to one of pacifist integration but like... to say they’re immoral when one of their core tenants is that they should kill no human is a bit far from the truth
I wouldnt say the Xmen dont have any morals but:

- Are the Xmen a "thing" anymore? I mean, we do have krakoans teaming up and forming rosters but... do we still have an Xmen team as analogue to the Avengers or the 4F?
- Shouldnt they review who deserves to be resurrected or/and living in Krakoa? I understand the Quiet Council is not the Xmen per se and some of the most influent members of this council are actually former villains/killers/maniacs which goes into the next question...
- Is it intelligent for Xavier and (the formerly known as Xmen) team to associate themselves to well known killers, assassins, genocides, megalomaniacs... etc? Do we have a long plan hidden to our sight? How is it possible that people like Cyclops, Jean, Wolverine and Storm can stay around Krakoa surrounded by people that nearly killed them (or even succeeded doing it) and sleep happily? I mean, we are not talking about misguided mutants (like some Acolites) or villains that could be redeemed (lets say Avalanche or Pyro) but about people like Sinister and his Marauders, Apocalypse or the bloody Shadow King.

To be honest, If I were an Avenger I would be extremely concerned and preparing a paralel agenda to counter any possible mutant revolt. Wouldnt you?

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by norwichchris » 06 Aug 2020, 17:57

das_boot wrote:
06 Aug 2020, 13:38
Wasn’t Farouk a mutant though? I thought that he was a mutant telepath and that’s why the Shadow King took him as a host?

Edit: also, wasn’t Mastermind just an illusionist? I thought that’s what made both of his daughters more powerful than him, that they were telepaths AND illusionists whereas his were just illusions?
Did wiki this: "The Shadow King's origins are unclear. All that is known is that he was living in Morocco until the 1800s before taking Farouk as a host. He claims to be a multiversal manifestation of the dark side of the human consciousnesses, spawned by the first nightmare, and has since been feeding on the shadows in their souls, transferring from host to host since the dawn of humanity.

For many years, the Shadow King's primary human manifestation was Amahl Farouk. When Amahl Farouk's powers developed he psychically controlled those around him, and merged with the Shadow King. As Farouk, the Shadow King originally confronted Professor X (inspiring him to form the X-Men).
"

Well Mastermind can project illusions so maybe his powers would be helpful in someway? think the Shadowking resurrection is an artist error and going to leave it there.
das_boot wrote:
06 Aug 2020, 14:03
Blackcyclops wrote:
06 Aug 2020, 13:57
The X-Men don’t have morals? That’s a fraught and bold statement lol
Agreed. Don’t get me wrong, I can understand where Chris is coming from to a degree because they certainly seem to have skewed their morals to a “mutants first” agenda as opposed to one of pacifist integration but like... to say they’re immoral when one of their core tenants is that they should kill no human is a bit far from the truth
I don't mind them having a mutants first agenda, it's justified if you consider previous runs of the X-men but when they act is they can do whatever they want and resurrect dead mutants without any oversight or consideration? Some of them are incredibly self destructive look at Jamie in Excalibur. Also don't think this is a desperately good idea even if it is for increasing numbers.

The X-men embracing there enemies is a joke as many have done unforgivable things to them and humanity over the years. It is doubtful that Apocalypse,Sinister or even Exodus would/or could ever coexist with humanity without eventually enslaving or exterminating them. What are the world government's and super heroes going to think when they see Xavier and Apocalypse having a drink etc? won't end well for them. As Fenix said it does seem to be leading to a mutant revolt.

Agree don't really think the X-men exist anymore and have turned into something else entirely.

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by EphemeristX » 06 Aug 2020, 18:48

Krakoa feeds off of psychic energy. I think they just need them as batteries since Monet was nearly overwhelmed, so it doesn't matter what specific type of power they have, as long as it's psionic in nature.

And if Apocalypse, Sinister, or Exodus refuse to coexist with humanity, they can go hang out with Sabretooth in the pit. That's the rule. Whether or not they like it, it's the price of admission for being part of Krakoa. I think it's better for them to invite these people to the island than to banish or disinvite them and have them run amok unchecked.
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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Tessa1984 » 06 Aug 2020, 21:24

Fenix wrote:
06 Aug 2020, 14:34
- Are the Xmen a "thing" anymore? I mean, we do have krakoans teaming up and forming rosters but... do we still have an Xmen team as analogue to the Avengers or the 4F?
I find myself appreciating the lack of an X-Men team or strike force, so to speak. It fits the moment. Let X-Force, Excalibur, etc. fulfill those needs IMHO. I enjoy a revolving cast, partly because there's so many characters who get neglected otherwise. The argument against a revolving cast is typically lack of character development. But again, we've got various other titles for that.

But also, the notion seems almost quaint under Hickman. Everyone is an X-Man or X-Woman or Mutant or Krakoan. I started reading X-Men comics in 1993, when the line between Blue and Gold teams started to blur. Soon enough, under Lobdell especially, you never knew who might appear in UNCANNY or Vol. 2. I liked this. Some did not. But I thought it fed into that soap opera element I love that was perfected under Claremont.

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by _Rick_ » 07 Aug 2020, 04:21

When you have so many mutants at your disposal, it makes sense to not have a specific X-men team unless they're required to be offsite often (like Excalibur and Marauders) or dealing with some issue on a regular basis (like X-Factor). The captains can select a team of available (and suitable) people whenever they need it.
With that said, the availability issue is at times weird. Just last issue we had Magneto telling us that everyone is so busy that Angel could only take one citizen. This issue we see a ton of mutants doing pretty much nothing on Krakoa and a ton of psychics were able to respond in short notice. Seems people weren't that busy after all.

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by norwichchris » 07 Aug 2020, 16:21

EphemeristX wrote:
06 Aug 2020, 18:48
Krakoa feeds off of psychic energy. I think they just need them as batteries since Monet was nearly overwhelmed, so it doesn't matter what specific type of power they have, as long as it's psionic in nature.

And if Apocalypse, Sinister, or Exodus refuse to coexist with humanity, they can go hang out with Sabretooth in the pit. That's the rule. Whether or not they like it, it's the price of admission for being part of Krakoa. I think it's better for them to invite these people to the island than to banish or disinvite them and have them run amok unchecked.
Well don't think they could ever get either of them down there without causing an awful lot of damage to Krakoa. Apocalypse/Sinister have access to Celestial technology and Exodus is on par with Apocalypse for power. Sabretooth was the weakest of the X-men enemies to be honest and easy to imprison. You also have to consider there ideologies, both Apocalypse and Exodus have followers who will do anything for them even if it meant being banished from Krakoa or imprisoned along side them.

Personally I like the idea of specific X-men teams as it makes more sense if you train/fight together you bond more as a team and can arguably be more efficient rather than random mutants thrown together with random powersets.

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Fenix » 08 Aug 2020, 12:00

Tessa1984 wrote:
06 Aug 2020, 21:24
Fenix wrote:
06 Aug 2020, 14:34
- Are the Xmen a "thing" anymore? I mean, we do have krakoans teaming up and forming rosters but... do we still have an Xmen team as analogue to the Avengers or the 4F?
I find myself appreciating the lack of an X-Men team or strike force, so to speak. It fits the moment. Let X-Force, Excalibur, etc. fulfill those needs IMHO. I enjoy a revolving cast, partly because there's so many characters who get neglected otherwise. The argument against a revolving cast is typically lack of character development. But again, we've got various other titles for that.

But also, the notion seems almost quaint under Hickman. Everyone is an X-Man or X-Woman or Mutant or Krakoan. I started reading X-Men comics in 1993, when the line between Blue and Gold teams started to blur. Soon enough, under Lobdell especially, you never knew who might appear in UNCANNY or Vol. 2. I liked this. Some did not. But I thought it fed into that soap opera element I love that was perfected under Claremont.
I dont see any problem about having a rotating cast per se, it makes sense that having an expanded roster they call to arms those who serve better against whatever menace comes.
However and considering Krakoa as a country now, considering how many villains are now residing in Krakoa and totally immune to any prosecution by any country's law except Krakoa's itself, many of them being confirmed irredeemable killers and/or maniacs... it feels like Xavier and the Quiet Council are forgetting something basic for any business, any country... PR.
The Xmen could still serve as good PR showcasing the best of the best mutantkind can offer to the World.
Is this happening? I dont think so.
Should it happen? Definitely.
Also, if pretty much feels like all krakoans have give up to their personal life goals, just living the new "dream" while partying and having fun. The whole concept feels extremely OFF as the vast majority of the Xmen former affiliates did enjoy playing heroics BUT ALSO having some normal life.
Hickman is really pushing it and trying to convince us they can travel to Chandilar and have fun there or they have gates everywhere so they could still visit their friends or relatives but I cant help but compare it to my own life experience when I was living in Dubai, a beautiful golden jail.

From a strategic point of view a team needs training, they need to exercise and combine their gifts with their teammates in order to maximize their efficiency, if the Xmen respond to any treat with ragtag improvised team they could have mistakes leading to lives lost.
It would sense to have a core strike force with rotating cast being added.
I guess Hickman did plan this as something like Magik being captain and using mostly NM and/or GenX members, while Cyclops being captain and using Xmen members but this has not been delivered like that and the only teams we have so far are the Marauders (who are not exactly a strike team but a rescue team, right?), Excalibur (and this is a totally different debate...), the NM (who stay together but are not exactly a strike team) or X-Force (who, in fact, are a strike team but focused in the defense of Krakoa, not into saving the World and fighting alonside the Avengers).

I think Scott could perfectly assemble his own team (Jean, Emma, Wolverine, homage to morrison's era) while using different rotating members like Banshee, Dazzler, Warpath, Nightcrawler... but thats my personal opinion.
Last edited by Fenix on 09 Aug 2020, 12:04, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by kalibeast » 08 Aug 2020, 22:23

I mostly just love that of all the heroic psychics the X-Men have come across/had on their roster over the decades, the mutants who answered Magik's call are some of their most hated and evil villains. ;)

Also, seeing someone like Mastermind resurrected makes me wish that there was another (I know, I know...) title out there specifically dealing with interactions between long-dead mutants and those they loved/were teammates with/were killed by, and so on. Something like an X-Men Unlimited that wouldn't necessarily have a team dealing with huge conflicts every month. I want to see Jean and Cyclops coming to terms with Mastermind being back, Xavier and Vulcan dealing with Sway and Petra's resurrection (an opportunity that was missed last week), and so many more (X-Force and Feral, Callisto and the Morlocks, Synch/Skin and Jubilee, Diamond Lil and Madison Jeffries, etc.).

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Blackcyclops » 08 Aug 2020, 23:01

Outside the Greys, Summers, Frosts, and Xaviers, all the most powerful psychics are usual villains though. I can only think you didn’t get Rachel and Jean because they’re in space, Xavier is busy, Emma and Psylocke are in their respective titles and so you get some real heavy hitters who are left...s*** Exodus is worth three c-list heroic psychics alone lol
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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by norwichchris » 09 Aug 2020, 00:26

I am extremely interested in seeing Exodus possibly finding Wanda on the island and discovering what she has done. Think he will be rather livid at her and probably drag her back to Krakoa in chains. Think he can take Wanda.

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Re: Empyre: X-Men #2

Post by Fenix » 09 Aug 2020, 12:09

norwichchris wrote:
09 Aug 2020, 00:26
I am extremely interested in seeing Exodus possibly finding Wanda on the island and discovering what she has done. Think he will be rather livid at her and probably drag her back to Krakoa in chains. Think he can take Wanda.
Well, considering how Hickman is moving that plot ("Wanda is a pretender") and how Wanda's story is extremely tied to the last 40 years of X-men/Avengers comics story, if we think about Thomas and Billy as they are suposedly mutants yet, the Axis retcon that can be easily undone or sidelined with little effort and Magneto suffering some kind of repressed PSTD in regards of this subject (as we could clearly see during Age of Xman...) I think we can foresee some kind of Avengers/Xmen crossover coming sooner than later with Wanda in the very middle of the story.

And that is a story I really want to read.

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