Okay, so I just finished Volume 2 of The Astonishing X-Men, and I’ve got some more questions for you experts…Overall impression: I definitely agree with John that the “Danger” storyline wasn’t quite as interesting as “Gifted,” but it was still a fun, enjoyable read. You’re always going to have that disappointing discrepancy between major story arcs and “Monster of the Week” storylines (as on “Buffy”), but I liked that they still threw in a little bit with Ord so you remembered that the Breakworld storyline was still simmering in the background. There was a lot more cool fighting in this one, and I definitely laughed out loud a few more times. (Joss’s Canadian jokes always crack me up.) That said, I have a ton more questions after reading this one. I realize some of these might not have definite answers though; we may be dealing in the realm of speculation. It’s just that with characters so well known, I can’t help but wonder if other people read the clues differently than I do. So any help or even wild guesses are welcome here…
– I haven’t read any Fantastic Four (or seen the movie, for that matter). Is there anything I might be missing about their brief appearance here? Seems pretty straightforward. But hey, aren’t they “mutants” of a sort? I remember from the trailers that they got blasted with radiation or something. The one bit I didn’t get was the Torch guy asking if they could be evil now. Some reference I don’t know? And – forgive me if I’m attacking a sacred cow here – what the hell does the stretchy guy do? They’re fighting the big huge monster and the chick’s shooting him with a force field, and the Torch is flaming him, and the Rock guy is bashing him… and Stretchy’s just there in the background, all stretched out. Seems a pretty useless superpower.
– Who is the mysterious voice talking to Emma at the end of Volume 1 and while she’s unconscious in book #8? At first I thought it was the Danger-bot, but now I’m pretty sure it was someone else. Do we know or is there some common speculation? Is it the same person she talks to in the shadows on Genosha? Was it one of those Hellfire guys on the last page? Who are they, anyway? Are any of them supposed to be recognizable? I know that they were baddies and she used to be one, so I’m guessing that they’re hinting that she’s really still a villain all along. Is that what the Danger-bot is referring to when she says she knows “the truth”? Is this how she knows that the last Sentinel is designed to use Cyclops’ power against the X-Men?
– Jesus, can Cyclops really take out a Sentinel just by removing his glasses? He’s a *lot* more powerful than I realized. I like that Wolverine gave him some small props there.
– My only knowledge of Professor Xavier is from the movies. This Xavier is a lot younger and stronger looking, and seems to take a lot more violent action. (Hello, semi-truck?!) I’m assuming that the friend he mentions who puts out a magnetic pulse is (the real) Magneto. If he’s helping Xavier, then is he not one of the Hellfire baddies Emma (might) be allied with? Or does this mean Xavier’s evil too? And what’s with that ending, where it comes out that he knew the Danger-bot was sentient all along? That’s way more morally-ambiguous than I thought the movie Xavier would ever get. Is this characterization of Xavier new, or is this how he always was in the books? What does the Danger-bot mean when she says no one really knows who Xavier is? If Jean knew, does this mean he’s some sort of Dark Phoenix-like thing?
– When they’re getting ready to go to Genosha, Hank mentions asking if “the Avengers” have anything lying around. Who are the Avengers?
– So Kitty’s dad was on Genosha; does this mean he was a mutant too? I somehow got the idea that the mutations didn’t necessarily run in families.
– Wow, did Hank go totally “Beast” there at the end when he attacked the Danger-bot? I got chills with that “MINE.” He was worried about completely devolving. Or is it just sort of a battle rage thing?
I think that’s everything for now, except… when does the next one come out??