X-Men vs. the Avengers #1-4
Issue(s): X-Men vs. the Avengers #1, X-Men vs. the Avengers #2, X-Men vs. the Avengers #3, X-Men vs. the Avengers #4
You can tell that something happened here with issue #4. CBR's Comic Book Legends Revealed has most of the details - short answer: this series was originally going to turn Magneto into a bad guy but someone decided at the last minute to back away from it - but there are still two lingering questions for me: who, exactly, made that decision and why Roger Stern still couldn't have written the final issue.
One the first point, it seems unlikely to me that Jim Shooter (or anyone higher than him) would have cared. Shooter was known to be mercurial, so i could be wrong, but we're also nearing the end of his reign where he was reportedly dealing with business matters and it doesn't seem like he would have been so hands-on unless he had to (he did plot the final issue). Mark Gruenwald & Ann Nocenti were co-editors for the entire series, so it again seems unlikely that either of them would make the decision unilaterally. The obvious culprit, then, would be Chris Claremont, who was a big enough star writer at this point that he could potentially have the power to derail the story if he made enough noise. But he seemed to be prepared for this - New Mutants #51, published the same month as issue #2 of this series, shows Magneto creating an image of his helmet in a foreshadowing of this issue, plus joining the Hellfire Club. Obviously the idea wouldn't be that he could go to jail at the end of this series but that he'd "step into the shadows" (per the text of that issue) and no longer play the role of a quasi-hero. He could have still formed alliances with the X-Men on an as-needed basis. Meanwhile, the X-Men were supposed to be going underground and even faking their own deaths (an idea that got stretched out until Fall of the Mutants but was teased as early as Uncanny X-Men #219) so this could have been a way for them to part ways with Magneto. This does lead to the question of who would teach the New Mutants; maybe it was in discussions with Louise Simonson (who takes over the Mutants with issue #55) that they realized they wanted to keep Magneto around (after declining to send Xavier home in New Mutants #50). I can't imagine the original plot happening without input from Claremont, and Nocenti's inclusion as co-editor says that at least the "X-Office" was involved.
Regarding Roger Stern, this is just pure speculation, but i wonder if he was just tired of editorial interference. First (a while back) he lost his West Coast Avengers to Steve Englehart. Then when John Byrne left the Fantastic Four, Stern took over but it's a truncated run. Not sure if it was always intended to be just a fill-in run but the fact that Tom DeFalco was scripting over Stern plots for issues #301-302 says to me that his run was interrupted. Then of course we have Stern's exit from the Avengers book, over a disagreement with Mark Gruenwald regarding the treatment of Captain Marvel. By cover date that's way after these issues, but the lead times are different for mini-series, and Stern could have been ahead in plotting for the Avengers and willing to script the Olympus run (which had a very simple, straightforward plot).
Update here. This is Roger Stern from the defunct Stern Talk archives:
It was supposed to end with Magneto showing his true colors as the egotistical rat bastard that he'd orginally been...but in such a way that he could have still gone on doing whatever he was doing in the X-MEN books at the time.
We don't know exactly how the original story would have worked out. It seems clear that the idea wasn't to simply bring Magneto back to an early Silver Age mustache-twirling villain. The X-Men work best as a metaphor for civil rights, and the Martin Luther King/Malcom X dynamic even in the early issues has been noted by many. It's not necessary to get into the real world distinctions between those figures; the idea is just a conflict peaceful integrationist and someone who, perhaps violently, rejects that worldview. Claremont's additions to Magneto's backstory add a huge amount of depth to the character. Of course, Magneto's early appearances where he was a one dimensional villain have to be overlooked, or rationalized, or explained away as madness, but it's a small price to pay for having the more nuanced character. We have plenty of other villains that can just be straight up evil.
Now, this doesn't mean that Magneto couldn't still be a "villain". The period where Magneto has been hanging around the X-Mansion has its moments, but i don't think it was explored properly. If we wanted to see Magneto truly reform, i think seeing Magneto actually trying to wrap his head around Xavier's worldview would have helped. We had that scene in New Mutants #35 where Magneto goes after some rapists that attacked Dani Moonstar and he terrifies them in a way that Professor Xavier never would have. And the New Mutants look on, impressed. That's the closest we get to seeing a difference between Magneto and Xavier's styles. But it's not like those guys were anti-mutant activists or anything. They had no idea Dani was a mutant. So it doesn't really get to the core philosophical differences between the two mutant leaders. And since we don't really explore Magneto's philosophy or how it may be changing, he has just come across as defanged. Having him take a more villainous (or at least, more radical and less legal) role while retaining the idea that he is still acting in the interests of mutants against human persecution would have been a better use of Claremont's backstory that just having him join the X-Men. His actions in Uncanny X-Men #150 serve as a potential blueprint here - he demanded that the world give up their nuclear weapons - very much a Squadron Supreme or Authority type of move - and then, when in response he was attacked, he killed his attackers. Not a hero, and obviously not actions i endorse, but different than, say, Graviton or the Red Skull.
Regardless of what you think about the decision to return Magneto to villain status, there's no doubt that Roger Stern is a more engaging writer than a Jim Shooter/Tom DeFalco combination. So this series is a disappointment, a lost opportunity, a series that you can't look on fondly regardless of the fact that the first three issues are really nice.
Stern starts with a power demonstration scene for the Avengers. They are doing what they do best, protecting humanity. In this case from meteors.
I'll be tracking Thor's references to his injuries throughout this series. Note that Thor talks about "injuries" but not Hela's curse, and the footnote just points us to "recent issues".
The meteors are actually important to the plot. The Avengers don't know it, but these meteors are part of what's left of Magneto's Asteroid M, which was accidentally smashed when the alien Warlock came to earth.
Across the world, the Soviet Super Soldiers are having less success with their power demonstration scene...
...and they are aided by the Crimson Dynamo, who has not been a member of their group.
Dyanmo has info on more meteors that are falling, and he convinces the Super Soldiers to join him in an attempt to capture the man that killed their soldiers and destroyed one of their cities.
Captain America meanwhile learns from a contact in the intelligence community what the meteor was, and they debate getting involved. Ultimately, they decide that Magneto deserves a fair trial, especially when the alternative is an assassination that would lead to martyrdom.
While the Avengers have been off saving the world (or at least a K-Mart) and the Soviet Super Soldiers were saving some trains, the X-Men are... swimming.
Havok, at least, is wondering what the heck he's doing with this group, and misses Lorna.
Magneto hears that more of his former Asteroid base is about to land in Southeast Asia, and he heads off to that location, leaving the X-Men behind. But they follow him.
The Avengers get to him first.
Then the X-Men arrive.
And before they start fighting, though, the Soviet Super Soldiers arrive.
I would have liked to see a little more diplomacy from the Avengers here. Captain Marvel comes on strong and arrogant, definitely wielding her authority, but the Avengers and X-Men have been allies in the recent past and a "Hey Magneto, we're worried you might get assassinated!" might have gone a long way, especially after the Soviets show up. It's not inconsistent with past behavior, though, and things are moving quickly.
Silvestri lays out a nice three way splash.
One thing i like about this series is it shows us how Stern intended to use Dr. Druid, which we didn't really get to see much in his final issues on the regular series.
During the fight, Rogue grabs Magneto to get him out of play, and i really love this scene with Captain Marvel (and no i'm not worried about the physics problem of her being able to set a pace with Rogue or talk while in light form).
I also like the acknowledgement that Dazzler used to be "friends" with the Avengers.
CM is everywhere during the fight, helping Thor (and we again see a reference to his "weakness").
I also like that She-Hulk is the one to raise the international law topic.
While the Avengers are taking care of the Soviet Super Soldiers, Magneto gets away from the X-Men and heads to his Asteroid.
Oh god that costume is awesome, isn't it? Compared to those purple drapes Magneto has been wearing?
The Avengers catch up to Magneto first, and he issues a villainous "Bah!", proving that he's going to turn evil again even though at the moment he's trying to save them from the explosion he's rigged for his asteroid.
Then the X-Men show up, so it's round two.
The fight is interrupted by the explosion, and the X-Men get away with Magneto again, only this time Dr. Druid is secretly with them.
Conveniently, Psylocke isn't with the X-Men for this event (we'll see her and Longshot briefly in issue #4), but i like the use of Dr. Druid here. The Avengers haven't had a mentalist on the team since Moondragon, and we see that Captain America, at least, is understandably uncomfortable with his powers...
...but he adds a specialized ability to the team that proves useful and doesn't require him to just use brute force mind control. It also allows me to add to New Mutants #35 the times when Magneto is shown to have mental abilities even without his helmet.
Rogue repeats that info after Druid is discovered and she absorbs his powers.
Meanwhile, the Soviet Super Soldiers recover. I am surprised that Stern did not have Darkstar use her darkforce energy on Captain Marvel. Maybe he was saving it for issue #4. The Soviet Super Soldiers do have relevance to the plot beyond that, since the focal crime for Magneto was his attack on the USSR. And Stern also takes the time to draw an interesting wedge between the group and their temporary ally, the Crimson Dynamo.
The rest of issue #3 has the Avengers and Soviets separately hunting for the X-Men, who have gone into hiding. Dr. Druid shows his ambitious side; he thinks to himself that he would "dearly love" to be the one that finds them. But it's actually the Soviets that locate the X-Men first, on a freighter.
During the battle, the Crimson Dynamo is indiscriminate about his blasts and decides to destroy the ship's engine to prevent Magneto from fleeing, which causes the boat to start sinking.
(You have to love the depowered Storm taking on Ursa Major. I mean if a guy that turns into a giant bear can't defeat a single human, what good is he? And this isn't even Claremont writing.)
The Avengers arrive responding to reports of the incident.
This results in a scene very similar to the one from Secret Wars where Cap and Wolverine put aside their differences and work together to save the passengers, as they saved the captive villains in that series.
Meanwhile, Thor shows Vanguard what he thinks of his hammer.
Everybody works together.
The Soviets learn that Crimson Dynamo was responsible for the damage to the boat, and so they decide to sit the rest of this out.
But Magneto escapes during the battle. Earlier, he was contemplating using circuitry in his helmet to rid the world of anti-mutant prejudice.
And that's where Stern's contribution ends.
As i said above, the story takes a huge dive in quality with issue #4. In addition to the change in plot direction and the writing team, Marc Silvestri is also off art. According to the CBR article i linked to, this was just because he had at this point been promoted as the penciler for the regular series. I don't know if he drew any of the original issue #4 and just couldn't return to it for changes while staying on schedule for changes in the plot, or if he would have moved on regardless. There's nothing wrong with Keith Pollard, but the issue was obviously rushed, as indicated by the crowd of inkers needed to finish it.
Tom DeFalco has his strengths, but writing over a plot that involves people standing around making legal arguments isn't one of them.
The X-Men have agreed to be taken prisoner (and then later get bored and break out).
Magneto hooks up with a bunch of random mutants.
The Avengers are reduced to sitting around not doing anything.
Eventually all the groups come together again (i'm skipping over some of the running around crap involving the mutants Magneto meets), and Magneto reveals his bigotry-destroying helmet plan. He starts off by trying it out on Captain America, in a truly awful sequence.
And then he surrenders and allows himself to be brought to trial.
This time his lawyer, Gabrielle Haller, tries to argue that there's no jurisdiction that can try Magneto...
...but that motion is denied.
Cap is then allowed to make a dickish statement...
...and Magneto starts, with no basis, to suspect that one of the judges is a mutant secretly trying to martyr Magneto to start a race war. That turns out to not be true - the guy is just a bigot - so Magneto instead uses his anti-bigotry helmet on him despite all that stuff about trust that he spouted before when he used the helmet on Cap. And with that, the decision on jurisdiction is reversed, and Magneto is set free.
So now we just have to worry if letting Magneto go free will also start a race war.
Ummm, what? First of all, good news, international terrorists! You apparently can't go to jail! Second, this trial again ends inconclusively, basically on a technicality. It doesn't settle at all the question of Magneto's guilt. And just looking at the final issue in isolation, Magneto's actions are inconsistent and illogical. I actually question the info in the CBR article to a degree; Magneto clearly is turning villainous in this issue by using a form of mind control on the judge. He seems to learn a lesson, from that ridiculous scene with Cap, and then he just does what he was going to do anyway. I guess everyone involved can be excused to a degree since this was a last minute revision, but it comes across as a cluster, and it's a really frustrating conclusion after three nice issues by Stern and Silvestri.
Here are Psylocke and Longshot.
Quality Rating: C-
Chronological Placement Considerations: See above for the two scenes where Thor references his injuries/weakness. He doesn't specifically mention Hela's curse, only that he's got some weakness. I'm therefore placing this after the curse is removed, with the idea that he's still got some lingering injuries that he's recovering from. The problem with placing it earlier is that Rogue is a prisoner of Mephisto in the Mephisto vs.... series between issues #3-4, and Thor is only active with the curse during that period (he gets his armor in a scene concurrent with X-Factor #17 which has to take place after Mephisto vs. #2-3 and becomes cured after his appearance in Mephisto vs.... #4. So for the Avengers i'm placing this after Thor #382, which is after Avengers #285, and before the shaving of Thor's beard in Thor #386 (#383-385 do not feature present day Thor). The fact that Magneto was still thinking about how his trial was unfinished in Fantastic Four vs. X-Men indicates that this issue must take place after that miniseries. Note that i'm tracking this Titanium Man as "Gremlin".
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (7): show
The link seems to keep going and going into a massive section of text I noticed.
I'm really one of the few who doesn't mind Magneto's "Silver Age" concept of being just this powerful, really insane villain, but that's mostly because they're unintentionally funny. But simply put, you could say it was brainwashing, an effect of his powers and his trauma from the Holocaust, whatever, it just isn't really him. Its funny as heck when they used it up until his de-aging by Alpha, but things changed the moment Claremont got hold of him and thus the awkwardness. (though I always crack up every time I see stuff like the F4 appearance at the end of Lee/Kirby or your "utter insane Magneto" review with the Inhumans comic)
Posted by: Ataru320 | March 21, 2014 6:59 PM
It seems all so very 'schizophrenic', in how the word was incorrectly understood, to have that bit where Magneto apologises to Reed Richards and shakes his hand in the Fantastic Four crossover, then, a short while later, he came within a hair's breath of becoming a villain again (something which would come to pass regardless a short while down the road, presumably due to editorial edict), and some of his actions here were villainous, albeit nobody got killed or hurt as a result and, it could be argued, the mindset of some X-Men at around this same time (I'm thinking Psylocke's apparent earnest consideration of killing Havok) was no less mired in shades of grey...good to see Wolverine and Havok written in character here, even if Magneto remained reformed one would expect Wolverine to demand answers if any team-mate started acting suspiciously (as Storm, say, would demand answers from him if he went off on one of his 'lone wolf' excursions), and Havok hasn't been back on the team for long and is probably wary of Magneto's motives more than any of the other X-Men.
Posted by: Harry | March 21, 2014 9:21 PM
The first three issues were utterly fantastic. I didn't even bother buying the fourth. I quickly scanned through it and put it down.
Art was really good as was Stern's writing. The three way fight sequences were really good, and I agree we see the best use of Dr Druid here. This is what sold me on him belonging to the Avengers.
Posted by: Chris | March 21, 2014 9:48 PM
Fixed that link problem. Thanks Ataru.
Posted by: fnord12 | March 22, 2014 11:57 AM
The recent Avengers vs X-Men trade has as bonus material Stern's original pitch for the series, as well as his script for issue 4. If I remember correctly, in the original pitch The Mandarin was the secret villain of the story, but that had already been changed before the issue 4 mess.
Posted by: S | March 22, 2014 7:09 PM
I remember being so disappointed as a kid when I got to issue four of this series. It took a lot of begging my parents for me to even get books this pricey but it was worth it for the first three issues. Silvestri's art was amazing and, hey, big team fights -- which was like WrestleMania to a kid reading comics back then. But then issue four comes out with Pollard's meh artwork and page after talky page of people looking constipated. I was too young to get any of the mutant rights stuff. I just wanted to see the X-Men and Avengers slug it out.
Posted by: Robert | March 23, 2014 3:55 PM
FNORD12, I think there's a small error. In the Thor vs Titanium Man fight, you state Thor refers to "his" weakness. He doesn't. He is referring to TM's weakness - his armor seizing up due to Captain Marvel.
Posted by: Chris | March 30, 2014 2:24 PM
I think what fnord meant was the Titanium Man refers to Thor's "weakness".
Posted by: Michael | March 30, 2014 2:50 PM
Clarified that. Thanks Chris and Michael.
Posted by: fnord12 | March 30, 2014 5:56 PM
Mike Zeck was the originally announced artist for this.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | April 5, 2014 1:29 PM
This was just so . . . disappointing. I was an X-Fan and a huge Avengers fan and was so looking forward to this, especially since the X-Men vs FF series which had started before this was SO good (and I wasn't a big fan of FF and didn't collect it, so I was expecting more from this). The writing wasn't very good, the art wasn't as good (some, in the first few issues was very good, especially any art involving Captain Marvel, but not to the level of the FF series). Both series had delayed endings but the FF ending worked and this one just fell completely flat.
Aside from that:
* - Because these series were being printed before the events in X-Men that preceded them, we now have the X-Men going from Scotland to New York (to meet Havok), back to Scotland (for the FF series), now on vacation, and then back to New York (for the Annual and #220) before heading to SF.
* - Vanguard has his hammer destroyed (that scene was pretty cool, actually), but he has one when he next shows up in Captain America. Where did he get it? I don't recall it ever being explained (though it might have been - it has been almost 30 years and my memory is not perfect).
* - Alex wishes Lorna were there. I have the feeling that Claremont hadn't worked out yet why Alex was back on the team and Lorna wasn't, otherwise there's no good explanation for her absence.
* - You gotta love when Dane cuts off Wolverine's explanation of his claws.
Posted by: Erik Beck | July 16, 2015 6:41 PM
Eric- no, Vanguard's hammer was never explained. But I don't see why it's such a big deal. Maybe Gremlin built a new hammer for him.
Posted by: Michael | July 16, 2015 7:52 PM
In terms of Avengers, this definitely should take place before Avengers #281-285. Specifically, before the final page of #279 - but with #280 following, there's already a bit of a clunky break after Hercules is kidnapped and the continuation of that thread not being until #281, so just after #279.
The reason for this is this is it features basically verbatim the line-up as shown in #279. It naturally fits there. All the status quos line-up for the characters.
If we place it at the end of the Olympus story we have the problem of a few changes to the team and characters.
Firstly, Namor's absence in this is hard to square. #285 ends with him (and Marrina) deciding to make new lives for themselves as Avengers. Him not being here after that definitely undercuts that point and is a clear indicator this should take place before hand. Especially considering we see an official meeting of the team in #1 and the story involves submarines, they definitely didn't have Namor sitting around off-panel on Hydrobase.
Secondly, we have the Thor issue. Mephisto Vs. complicates this as well. #285 sees Thor depart with the intention of undoing Hela's curse. Here he is still wearing his armor, his beard and referring to injuries. You've come up with a solution that he's referring to other injuries, but the problem is instead Thor's quick return to the team. When he next returns to the team in Thor #390 it is treat as if he has not been back to the team since his problems.
But, also, at the end of #285, we have a period where a week passes between the penultimate and last page. It's during this time in which Cap stops being Cap and I assume where you reckon this story should be slotted. But my problem with that is in that "week" we would have to have Thor's almost IMMEDIATE return after bidding farewell at the end of #285 in order to explain his involvement here. So the Thor chronology goes: Thor says goodbye to the team swearing he will cure Hela's curse, Thor does that, Thor returns to the team - as if nothing as changed with him, after a single mission Thor abruptly departs from the team afterwards without any acknowledgement, Thor returns weeks later.
Plus, it's completely unspoken, but logically with the return of Namor in #285, Thor would feel less obligated to be a member of the team since now Namor is capable of filling his spot on the roster.
Another thing that makes me want to place it before Olympus and closer to Under Siege is the Marvel Age cover advertising this did feature Thor looking exactly as he did in Under Siege. I know a cover to Marvel Age is in no way a canon, but it does finalize my way of thinking that it should be just before that final page of #279.
Posted by: AF | July 16, 2016 4:29 PM
(sorry, a boat - not a submarine. Was thinking of the sub from X-Men #150. My point still stands. If this is after #285, Namor would surely be there since that is a mission that BEGS for his presence)
Posted by: AF | July 16, 2016 4:48 PM
But what about Rogue? Mephisto Vs.2 takes place before X-Factor 13, since Scott thinks Maddie is alive in Mephisto Vs. 2. Jean is taken by Mephisto at the end of issue 2 and in issue 3 she's returned but Rogue is kidnapped. Thor gets his new armor in Thor 377-378, which takes place at the same time as X-Factor 15. And Rogue is only rescued in issue 4 when Thor's curse is lifted. So if we place it in between Avengers 279 and 285, how is Rogue appearing here?
Posted by: Michael | July 16, 2016 5:30 PM
Well, Mephisto vs. is a continuity nightmare anyway. I'll admit not having read Mephisto vs. in years, I think I've read it twice? I like the Buscema art and really WANT the story to be better than it is.
Isn't Scott thinking Maddie is alive the immediate result of Mephisto conjuring her and Nathan's image to torture him? And if there's any mention after that, seeing their image would justify any subsequent belief Maddie is alive for the rest of the issue, imo.
Or is there another bit before all that? Possible explanation in case: the first stage of grief IS denial.
Personally, I would say the Avengers continuity aligning should take precedence over Cyclops feelings towards Maddie (which have been inconsistent everywhere else anyway). That seems to be the only X-Men dependency you raised there (I'm sure there's probably some more with the Uncanny team's roster). Placing this where it is mucks up stuff with Namor, Thor and sort of Cap. Also Monica goes from being a bit leader-y in the Olympus story to taking a total backseat here, where it definitely reads better the other way around. There are a FEW references to Thor's injuries in XvA. I counted at least 3 on a cursory flip, I think that is too substantial an amount to say it's lingering injury and NOT the result of Hela's curse. Namor's absence in Mephisto vs. is a lot easier to just shrug off than his absence in XvA.
Basically, I'm saying this belongs before Avengers #281-285. It should go: AV #279 (and #280 if you want?)> XVA #1-4> AV #281-285> Mephisto Vs #1-4.
It's late here and I've already taken my sleep pill so I'm cognitively not quite able to work out or comprehend or even try to do larger contextualization. I'm sure there's an obvious thing or two about X-Men or X-Factor but I can't think.
Posted by: AF | July 16, 2016 6:11 PM
Think I've finally wrapped my head around something I was trying to say (it might make no sense): you're point is a paradox, which i really didn't need so close to sleep, if you're saying Mephisto vs. has to happen before X-Factor 13, and the whole series happens at once, then what about Thor's armor? As you said, Thor gets his armor at the time of X-Factor 15, so how does he have his armor in Mephisto vs? Plus, Mephisto vs resolves his Hela curse, so what you're saying is that a LOT of Thor appearances with the armor such as the Olympus story where he specifically names Hela's curse as why he's wearing it, are wrong.
Posted by: AF | July 16, 2016 6:25 PM
But the whole series DOESN'T need to happen at once- it's possible to assume that Rogue was trapped in Hell for several days Earth time between Mephisto Vs. 3-4.
Posted by: Michael | July 16, 2016 6:41 PM
Well, doesn't each issue begin with the team from the last issue still involved after Sue, Jean and Rogue are Mephistonapped?
And I'm sure there'd be problems with saying any of those characters are kidnapped for long-term periods to fit in various issues between issues of Mephisto vs.
Posted by: AF | July 17, 2016 4:31 AM
The Avengers and X-Men continuity for Mephisto vs. is the area of contention. If you were to remove Mephisto vs. from the equation, would there be any reason this series can't be where I'm saying it should be?
So the problem then is with Mephisto vs., not X-Men vs. Avengers.
Posted by: AF | July 17, 2016 4:33 AM
Just to reiterate/clarify some rules regarding placement:
1) I generally don't move issues once i'm done working on a year, because everything is a bit of a house of cards, and moving one thing often has a cascading affect on other entries. If it can be shown that the placement CAN'T work, i will move it. But if someone just has an idea why a certain placement might be better, it's not enough for me to risk it.
2) I don't generally consider the absence of a character to be a placement consideration (unless, of course, it's with a reference to something specific). Characters might not be available for any number of reasons. In the absence of anything else, when considering initial placement, it's something to think about, but it takes an immediate back seat to any other placement considerations.
In the end, i think where AF landed is exactly right: the problem is with the Mephisto series, which introduced all sorts of complications. But for this project i still need to make that series fit, even if it means making compromises in terms of "best" placement for other books.
Posted by: fnord12 | July 18, 2016 12:31 PM
Jason Powell relates an email from Roger Stern here that offers the best explanation I've seen of Stern's thinking about Magneto: http://www.therealgentlemenofleisure.com/2012/04/x-amining-uncanny-x-men-150.html?showComment=1334252765041#c6823218693053528505
Stern didn't buy Magneto's sudden reformation and thought someone in-universe (the Avengers) should be similarly skeptical--that's what I come up with, anyway, between Stern's comments to Powell and his original plots for this X-Men vs. Avengers series, which is summarized here, http://marvel1980s.blogspot.com/search/label/X-Men%20vs%20Avengers .
I can see why Stern might have been frustrated enough to quit: his plots for all four issues were changed, but he rewrote or at least res rioted the first three himself. By the fourth issue, he was going to lose his artist and he was being asked for another rewrite, so he dropped out. He's said elsewhere that the order to rewrite #4 (evidently a second time?) didn't come from DeFalco, for what it's worth.
Posted by: Walter Lawson | November 24, 2016 2:57 PM
"Res rioted" should be "rescripted." The Master Mold that runs my iPad's spellcheck obviously had its own ideas.
Interesting to note that in Stern's original plots, the Bullski Titanium Man would have returned as a lackey of the Mandarin, and rage Gremlin would have remained just the Gremlin. I like the idea that the Mandarin's rings, particularly the matter rearranger, could have restored Bullski after he was "carded" and torn up in his last appearance.
Posted by: Walter Lawson | November 24, 2016 3:42 PM
Third panel from bottom, LHS, is that Wolverine ? Or Harvey Birdman ?
Posted by: David Moran | March 23, 2017 7:06 AM
Finished this last night. Good lord, what a mess this is. It's not just the last issue (which, obviously, is riddled with lots of problems all its own): The plot of the entire series is ridiculous, repetitive, and stretches plausibility. Stern does a few interesting scripting things here and there, and I'll always love me some Silvestri (though some of his Dazzler poses are decidedly bizarre), but the behavior of nearly every single character (except Captain America, Crimson Dynamo, and I guess the other Russians, though I'm only vaguely familiar with Darkstar and don't even know who the others are) feels at least a little off, sometimes WAY off, and both the overall plot and the absolutely asinine conclusion of the court (what, can just anyone declare themselves a country unto themselves in the MU now?) make it very difficult to enjoy any part of this.
Posted by: J-Rod | May 4, 2017 10:52 AM
Somebody forgot that Longshot only has 4 fingers on each hand eheh
Posted by: Bibs | October 29, 2017 6:14 AM
For those with exceptional eye-sight, here is all of the bonus scripts and stuff from the trade concerning the original ending to the series, written by Stern with notes by Gruenwald.
First off; Roger Stern's original plot summary for the whole series (which changed a LOT):
Then we have Roger's list of all the crimes of Magneto (which is refreshing after all of Claremont's "oh, he's such a tortured soul" schlock):
And then what we're most interested in; Roger Stern's #4:
Posted by: AF | January 15, 2018 9:43 AM
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