Uncanny X-Men #180
Issue(s): Uncanny X-Men #180
Professor X casually mentions that Doug is in fact a mutant. His power is languages - both human and computer.
Kitty convinces the others to let her go with Doug to investigate. The risk is thought to be minimal, because Emma Frost is thought to still be in a coma.
Colossus is jealous of Kitty's friendship with Doug and it makes him doubt their relationship. He thinks he is too old and doesn't have enough in common with Kitty and that she'd be better off with Doug.
Despite Wolverine's reassurances, Colossus becomes distant with Kitty and doesn't even give her a proper goodbye when she leaves for Massachusetts with Doug. This is particularly sad because at the end of this issue Professor X leads the X-Men to Central Park, where he detects the presence of whatever's been scanning the Earth the past few issues. The X-Men investigate and find the building that brings them to Secret Wars.
During Secret Wars, Colossus will develop feelings for the healer Zsaji, which will further cause him to doubt his feelings for Kitty, and when he returns he'll break up with her.
Lockheed does not appear in this issue, and yet in Secret Wars #1 he's with the X-Men. Of course, so is Cyclops, who wasn't even a member of the team at the time, so i guess the Beyonder just added whoever he wanted.
Meanwhile, it turns out that the White Queen is actually out of her coma.
Most of this issue, however, is actually about Storm. She discusses her recent mental turmoil with Xavier - he detects no actual mental illness.
Then she goes to the Bronx Botanical Garden to visit her plants, which she moved out of her attic when she changed her wardrobe and personality. The 80s must have been a really dangerous time, because right there in a the greenhouse, she encounters a group of thugs beating up an old couple and apparently threatening to rape the poor old lady (in rollers!).
As always, it's a multi-racial group of thugs in bizarre clothing.
Storm beats them all up without using her powers (I don't know why the Gardens have a display for Poison Oak).
Then she does use her powers just for "a little something for them to remember me by", but that display frightens the old couple. Sworn to protect those who hate and fear them, and all that.
Later, Storm confronts Kitty, who has been avoiding her since the personality shift. They reconcile.
A little on the melodramatic side, and the scene with the thugs is just ridiculous, but it's all still pretty well done.
Quality Rating: B
Chronological Placement Considerations: This issue takes place between New Mutants #14 and #15. The X-Men leave for Secret Wars this issue.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: X-Men Classic #84
Inbound References (1): showColossus, Cypher, Nightcrawler, Professor X, Shadowcat (Kitty Pryde), Storm, White Queen (Emma Frost), Wolverine
The title refers to the 1983 film of the same name.
The Colossus/Kitty relationship kinda bothered me because she was 13 and he had to be at least 19. True, they didn't do anything sexual, but still...
Posted by: Mark Drummond | October 2, 2011 4:28 PM
I am very much not a fan of mohawk-Storm and that put me out of suspension of disbelief for these issues. Decades later, I still find it odd that Xavier and Storm both seem to think of him as having the authority to state that she has no mental illness after just a simple psi-probe.
That is of course easier to find odd after Onslaught and the like. But even at the time he was basically failing to notice that Illyanna was slowly becoming a demon. Karma, as well, had recently found herself so torn by emotional distress that she suddenly left the New Mutants with only a written note as a warning.
Xavier as depicted at those times seems to be a lot better as an idealist and an inspiration than as an actual mentor. For all his telepathy, he comes up as rather oblivious, even neglectful.
Posted by: Luis Dantas | May 21, 2017 4:42 AM
Personally, I find mohawk Storm really cool and gorgeous, I even have a t-shirt with that version of her in it. Not every superheroine needs to look like a supermodel.
I would also like to think that the reason Claremont had her go through his transformation was cos he realised he had been writing Storm quite close to some dodgy stereotypes of women, particularly African women: innately in touch with nature, motherly, nurturing... This whole "women heal the world, men want to destroy it" hippy dippy bullshit. So her transformation was crucial for her to move beyond that kind of stereotyping, and IMO it made Storm a more interesting character.
Posted by: Tuomas | May 21, 2017 6:02 AM
Also, it would've been really unfortunate if the story had suggested that woman adopting a more masculine look and attitude was caused by mental illness. Especially since it was implied Storm had just had her first experience with another woman with Yukio.
In fact, I'm sure that if Claremont had written this story 30 years later, with no Comic Code or reader homophobia to worry about, it would've explicitly been about Ororo coming out as gay.
Posted by: Tuomas | May 21, 2017 6:12 AM
I'm also a fan of mohawked Storm. It's very clearly the result of Ororo going through some serious, and positive changes in her life and outlook, and externally changing her looks to demonstrate this in an act of self-definition (and certainly not mental illness). It's almost a radical change, and certainly one for a comic book super-heroine.
With all of the reasonable debates over Claremont's treatment of female characters, I can't see this as anything other than a mark in the positive column for that argument.
Posted by: James | May 21, 2017 9:03 AM
The problem is that Storm's adopting a more "masculine " attitude meant that she could endanger her friends without consequences. She nearly drowns Maddie in issue 175 and later on is willing to kill Doug when he's possessed by the Shadow King without first seeing if there's a way to separate them.
Posted by: Michael | May 21, 2017 11:44 AM
For the record, I have no problem with Ororo developing a more rounded personality. I just don't think Claremont did a very good job at it. Then again, I think Claremont's merits as a writer tend to be weighted decisively more on the side of intent rather than delivery. Ororo seemed... broken, I think, and for a very long time.
As already noted, her character changed a lot, IMO definitely for the worse, making her a lot less trustworthy than she used to be, even as the others around her somehow decided to trust her more regardless. Doesn't really add up.
In any case, my point is that is impressive how little questioning Xavier's claims had back in the day. And in all honesty, this is a scene where it would make perfect sense to doubt his judgement.
Posted by: Luis Dantas | May 21, 2017 1:16 PM
The Maddie thing always seemed overblown to me. I know that Rogue's (fading) psi-powers say Storm was willing to kill, but it's just never sounded true to me. The book says what it says, so I can't really argue on that, but
Kill Doug? Really? I don't have the books handy, but I don't remember any such event or see any indication of that on this site. Storm does explicitly tell Warlock that Sam isn't responsible for his Farouk-possessed actions, and even if he was they wouldn't kill him. I don't recall her giving Sam leeway but not Doug.
Posted by: ChrisW | May 21, 2017 7:24 PM
As to the overall discussion of Ororo, I think she was on a plotted 50-issue character arc. Very early after #150, she and Scott are in the Danger Room and evenly-matched every step of the way, when Corsair shows up and the first steps towards the Brood Saga are taken. During the Brood Saga, she goes through her death/rebirth with the space whale and starts feeling that she has been separated from nature.
She stabs Callisto through the heart in one-on-one conflict, she cuts off her hair after a wild night in Tokyo with Yukio and soon after that, loses her powers. After that she has her romance with Forge, goes through the Lifedeath issues, and almost 50 issues after their last fight, easily defeats Cyclops in the Danger Room.
There are compliments and criticisms to be made, but I think Storm from "X-Men" #151-201 is one of Claremont's most successful story arcs. I'd also point out that, during the same cycle, we first see the Massachusetts Academy, then we meet the New Mutants, then Kitty gets kidnapped by the White Queen, and by the end Magneto has taken over the school. Weaknesses in plotting, characterization or dialogue aside, Claremont had a very strong authorial presence and stayed on one title for so long that it couldn't help but have some very engaging and successful storylines.
Posted by: ChrisW | May 21, 2017 7:32 PM
Storm does suggest, in New Mutants #34, that killing Doug might be acceptable if it meant the defeat of Farouk. Fnord's scans and synopsis don't include this. It's an odd moment, and it bothered me when I read it. I thought it was out of character for Storm even at her darkest.
The only alternative I can imagine is that Storm was feinting to allow Karma to intervene and challenge Farouk to a psychic duel (which is what happens next).
Posted by: James | May 21, 2017 9:40 PM
I could see Storm doing a suitably dark 'we will destroy the villain, no matter the cost' riff, but I don't recall her specifying Doug as acceptable collateral damage. And I don't have the books handy for reference. Compared to what she said about Sam, if I'm wrong it's probably safe to say Claremont wasn't 100% consistent. I know that sounds weird.
Posted by: ChrisW | May 21, 2017 10:13 PM
I had to search with Google deeply to find the panels in question, but you can see it here:
It does inspire Karma to stand up and challenge Farouk in spite of her condition, which is one of the best parts of the story. It's sure looks like Storm plans on killing him, though. Again, I thought it was very much out of character. But, you're right, even at his strongest Claremont wasn't always consistent.
Posted by: James | May 22, 2017 12:12 PM
Well, there you go. I remembered Illyana stabbing Doug and wondered if that might be the reason for confusion. Storm's a bit out-of-character, but I'd put that down to jacking up the drama right before Karma challenges Farouk, which you're right, is one of the best parts of the story.
Posted by: ChrisW | May 22, 2017 10:13 PM
Hm, based on the discussion here, I had to re-read Uncanny 172-173, and the comics didn't seem to imply a sexual relationship.
Maybe as a subtext, but I just can't read it there.
Posted by: Karel | November 5, 2017 4:42 PM
Oh, I can't edit, but 172-173 was the issue when Storm and Yukio meet and they jump around for a bit, and then Storm has that mohawk.
Posted by: Karel | November 5, 2017 4:43 PM
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