Uncanny X-Men annual #5
Issue(s): Uncanny X-Men annual #5
A Shi'ar ally escapes to Earth to try and get help from Xavier (it's not clear to me why there are Shi'ar involved), but it's the Fantastic Four who respond to the disruption she causes in New York City.
All but the Invisible Girl are captured by pursuing Badoon.
As the Shia'r dies she mentions that Xavier must be told, so the Invisible Girl heads to his Mansion. But as soon as she gets there and sees Kitty trying on another silly outfit, she starts asking if maybe the Avengers ought to be called in. Based on an off-panel phone call with Jarvis, Cyclops says the Avengers are away on a mission.
The X-Men manage to fight off the Badoon and rescue everyone.
Sue Storm is depicted surprisingly badly. Instead of being treated like the veteran heroine she is, showing these young X-Men how the world's premiere super-heroes do things, or at least just being basically competent, she's weak and hysterical the entire issue. She's back in her apron...
...she's fainting from exhaustion...
...she's so overcome with emotion she can't stick with the X-Men's plan...
...etc. Very surprising coming from Claremont. By contrast, when the Human Torch refers to Storm as "gorgeous", she flatly responds "I am called Storm, Torch." and makes the point that she's there to rescue his sorry ass. I wonder if it was a conscious decision to say, yes, we have strong women in the Marvel Universe, but that doesn't mean every woman is strong.
Nice art by Brent Anderson. But something that doesn't work for me: in the beginning of the issue Kitty comes out with her latest terrible costume and everyone reacts appropriately. But later after the X-Men win their fight, the Arkonians dress up Kitty in their finest barbarian-princess clothes to help her impress Colossus. And he's duly impressed. But it's pretty much the same horrible outfit...
Quality Rating: B-
Chronological Placement Considerations: Needs to take place after Uncanny X-Men #149 since this is the second time Kitty has tried designing her own super-hero costume.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (2): showArkon, Brother Royal, Colossus, Cyclops, Franklin Richards, Grand Vizier (Polemachus), Human Torch, Invisible Woman, Moira MacTaggert, Mr. Fantastic, Nightcrawler, Professor X, Shadowcat (Kitty Pryde), Storm, Thing, Wolverine
The first chapter title refers to a line from a current TV commercial "Ooh La La Sassoon!". Referencing a commercial is kinda dumb and I wonder if it was really Claremont's idea.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | September 11, 2011 7:04 PM
According to the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe, Deathbird was an ally of the Badoon. The Marvel Appendix speculates that it was Deathbird who provided the Badoon with the Stargate:
Posted by: Michael | January 22, 2012 10:19 AM
Fnord - the only consideration you have is that it has to be post-X-Men #149. But this is gonna cause you to move a lot. It can be post FF #232 because Sue's hair hasn't been cut yet. And it can't be between Avengers #212 and 213 like you have it, because there's no way the Avengers would be off on a mission - it's clear that no missions happen between Hank blasting the woman in 212 and his court-martial in 213. So you may have to move this back a bit, and move X-Men #149 and 150 back as well.
On a story note, Arkon is always perfect for an annual - he generally provides a good long story that doesn't mess with your regular continuity. His WCA appearance would have been good for an annual had Marvel not pretty much gone with the "all annuals should be part of mega-events" policy by then.
Posted by: Erik Beck | May 1, 2015 6:19 PM
The MCP and George Olshevsky's Official Index both have this issue circa FF #235. Couldn't Sue just be between haircuts? I also have her in some Marvel Two-In-Ones and then the Ditko FF annual after this, and she has longish hair in all of those. So i think we can say her hair grew out and she gets it cut again before her next Byrne FF appearance. Cosmic rays makes your hair grow fast, you know.
As for the Avengers, it looks like i am going to do some shuffling. It looks like i pushed #212 back too far when i was syncing it with Thor #311. #212 and #213 are supposed to be a day apart. Right now i have too much space between issues, and the Death of Captain Marvel also appears in between. Otherwise, i wouldn't necessarily say that this issue couldn't take place in between. Jarvis may be telling a white lie; it could be that the team is in disarray after Pym's actions and that they're not really on a mission. Or it could be that something important did come up; i feel like the Avengers wouldn't not respond to something because they were waiting on Pym's court martial, and the fact that they're having the formal court marshal in #212 doesn't preclude them responding to something else. But since i have to move the issues anyway i'll see what i can do.
It will probably be a few days before i get around to moving the issues, so consider this an open period if anyone wants to weigh in on Sue's hair issue!
Posted by: fnord12 | May 2, 2015 1:03 AM
The Monster of Badoon was previously seen in Silver Surfer #2 and Marvel Two-In-One #4-5. I wonder if the Badoon (and John Buscema, in real life) deliberately made it look a bit like Galactus?
Posted by: Omar Karindu | October 2, 2015 10:46 AM
Sue's hair is fine with this chronology as it presently stands. When she's posing for Byrne, she curls it more, so it looks shorter.:-D but check out the closeup head-shot of her and Ororo together, above-- in that panel, her hair looks very consistent with the Byrne haircut.
Not just Sue, but all of the FF in this Brent Anderson-drawn annual, and in the Ditko-drawn FF annual #16, are drawn according to the older model, as was used in the years prior to the John Byrne redesign. Gotta give some wiggle room for artistic differences and choices.
Sue's characterization in this annual is another matter. I agree that it's unexpected coming from Claremont at this time. I wonder how much this might have to do with some behind-the-scenes Claremont/Byrne feud, it's almost like Claremont is saying, hey look here, my X-wimmenz is cooler and more independent than Byrne's Invisible Grrl, nyah nyah...
Posted by: Holt | May 9, 2018 9:27 PM
Every time I re-read my X-Mens, I'm struck by how much less interesting the annuals are, even if drawn by an otherwise great artist.
Claremont's depiction of the Fantastic Four is definitely a throw-back, for some reason. Reed's still smoking his pipe, and the splash introducing them is an homage to the classic splash to FF 64.
His depiction of the Invisible Woman is decidedly off-type, especially considering how strongly he wrote her a little over a year before in Marvel Team-Up 88.
Posted by: Andrew | May 10, 2018 7:39 AM
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