Issue(s): X-Men #36
As i noted in the last entry, there seems to be an incongruity about that. The Phalanx are said to have derived themselves (ultimately) from Warlock. And there was never an indication that Warlock's Technarchy race would have had trouble absorbing mutants. That seems proven just from the fact that the techno-organic virus was acquired via Doug Ramsey (see Uncanny X-Men #305). Warlock also had no problem infecting other Earth lifeforms (including plants), or, for that matter, demons from Limbo. And we'll actually see the Phalanx absorb rats in this crossover. The reason that mutants are so immune should have been explained better.
Anyway, we also get a glimpse of our Generation Next in the above scan.
We also see a split between Hodge and Lang. Lang "created" the Phalanx as a kind of super-Sentinel, as part of his longstanding desire to rid the world of mutants. But Hodge has fully embraced the Phalanx and is looking forward to assimilating all of humanity as well.
The new member of Generation X that we meet this issue is Everett Thomas. He'll later be named Synch. And as that name implies, his power is the ability to duplicate the power of mutants near him. He's just found that out by duplicating Banshee's power, and he's in trouble for it.
It happened while he was being attacked by the Phalanx, and the Phalanx attack again while the police are trying to apprehend him. Banshee and Sabretooth show up to help.
Jubilee and the White Queen were hanging back, concealed with a psi-screen from Frost, but the Phalanx detects and attacks them too. With help from the White Queen, Synch uses his powers to borrow Jubilee's, and uses them in a way that she's been "afraid" to, destroying the Phalanx at a "sub-atomic level".
But not all of the Phalanx are destroyed. Lang reveals himself, and it turns out that he's got Jean Grey's sister Sara with him.
It's said that her mental strength is much like Jean's, and she hasn't fully submitted to the assimilation. The Phalanx have also captured Paige Guthrie at this point, and, as a taunt, Lang shows her as well before leaving. But the White Queen manages to make telepathic contact with Paige before leaving, and learns her location.
On top of all that, Sabretooth escapes in the confusion.
This is a purely plot driven issue, but it's a good plot and it's done well at least in terms of moving the pieces along for the Phalanx situation and introducing Synch.
Synch's super-ability, and especially his use of Jubilee's, makes him (and Jubilee) seem extremely powerful in a way that doesn't feel right for a group of new teen characters, but the fact that it's done through the White Queen might be mitigating.
It's nice to see that Sara Grey hasn't been forgotten, but there's still a lot left open since her disappearance, and this crossover won't explore it further (in fact, this is Sara's final appearance).
Quality Rating: C+
Chronological Placement Considerations: This is part two of Phalanx Covenant: Generation Next. Part three is in Uncanny X-Men #317. It's said at the start of this story that M was captured "a day ago".
Crossover: Phalanx Covenant
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (2): showBanshee, Cameron Hodge, Claudette St. Croix, Harvest (Phalanx), Husk, Icarus, Jebediah Guthrie, Jubilee, Lewis Guthrie, Lucinda Guthrie, Nicole St. Croix, Sabretooth, Sara Grey, Steven Lang, Synch, White Queen (Emma Frost)
FNORD - you wrote - "As i noted in the last entry, there seems to be an incongruity about that. The Phalanx are said to have derived themselves (ultimately) from Warlock. And there was never an indication that Warlock's Technarchy race would have had trouble absorbing mutants. That seems proven just from the fact that the techno-organic virus was acquired via Doug Ramsey (see Uncanny X-Men #305). Warlock also had no problem infecting other Earth lifeforms (including plants), or, for that matter, demons from Limbo. And we'll actually see the Phalanx absorb rats in this crossover. The reason that mutants are so immune should have been explained better."
from the wiki entry on the Phalanx -
Phalanx, like the Technarchy, can infect other organisms with the transmode virus with any physical contact - the only known exception being Earth mutants who possess a degree of immunity to the transmode virus. This seems to be a limitation of the Phalanx which their Technarchy progenitors do not have, as Warlock had no problems infecting his future teammate Magik (accidentally) when they first met and repeatedly infecting Cypher to form the Douglock entity on multiple occasions; In Cypher's case the effect was reversed without apparent incident, though Warlock was constantly worried that a time would come when the reversal would not take.
Posted by: clyde | January 16, 2018 2:57 PM
They bring Sarah Grey and don’t deal with her by the end of the crossover?
Posted by: Lecen | January 16, 2018 8:00 PM
It's explained in X-Men 322 that Sara essentially died with the rest of the Phalanx.
Posted by: Michael | January 16, 2018 8:44 PM
And what does Sarah know about any of the X-titles that would make her worth more than as a hostage? Candy and Hodge knew and worked with many mutants and superpowered beings [the Champions, Genosha, N'astirh.] Hodge may have something to offer with his power base of armored mooks, but Candy wouldn't. And Sarah would be completely expendable without that last name.
Posted by: ChrisW | January 16, 2018 9:59 PM
At one point the X-Tinction Agenda was supposed to feature Sentinels, or so the Marvel Requirer, a free preview mag, thought: http://www.bulletholestudios.com/chrisclaremontchecklist/uncanny-x-men-271.html
Another X-fan once told me, based on what source I don’t know, that the X-Tinction “Sentinels” were supposed to be “Bio-Sentinels.” I’d never heard that, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Bob Harras had the Phalanx idea in 1990, when he first brought Hodge and Warlock together, and maybe he considered introducing them then. The later involvement of Lang adds to the idea of the Phalanx as ersatz Sentinels, though I confess I never thought about the Sentinel-like quality of the Phalanx until reading these reviews.
We’ll get more “Bio-Sentinels” in Operation Zero Tolerance. Those are more clearly based on classic Sentinels than the Phalanx concept.
Harras seems to have had a moderately good idea here that he couldn’t quite nail, hence the two or three attempts at if (three if we count the X-Tinction rumor). Hodge and Lang seem to be villains Harras was eager to appropriate: we get Lang as a Sentinel himself, as Master Mold’s “Conscience,” in that MCP serial with Cyclops that Harras penned. That story also features an anti-mutant virus, presumably Harras’s Legacy prototype.
Posted by: Walter Lawson | January 16, 2018 10:01 PM
I forget....how does a muzzle neutralize Sabretooth as a threat when he can still freely use his claws???
Posted by: Vincent Valenti | January 17, 2018 12:07 AM
I wasn't aware this was it for Sarah Grey and I'm not a fan of using supporting characters in this way. I believe having completely normal relatives is a nice touch for mutants and it goes a long way towards humanizing the characters.
This does nothing for Jean. She mentions Sarah once or twice after this, there's no follow-up or sense of loss. End of Greys does the same thing on a much more ridiculous scale years later. It's just unnecessary.
Posted by: Bigvis497 | January 17, 2018 12:50 AM
I've noticed that there's a gap between X-Men v2 #30 & #36 that you didn't cover. Did you just wanted to get this crossover out of the way and fill that gap later, or will those issues not be covered at all?
Posted by: Bibs | January 17, 2018 5:11 AM
Posted by: Morgan Wick | January 17, 2018 5:52 AM
Thank you Morgan, I was aware of the new status quo of the site but I wanted to ask anyway.
Hopefully those issues (and others) will somehow be covered because it feels weird (to me) having gaps in the chronology.
Posted by: Bibs | January 17, 2018 3:22 PM
Poor Kwannon... her death remains so inconsequential it isn't even covered on a comprehensive chronology site!
Posted by: AF | January 17, 2018 4:46 PM
@Vincent: those silver gloves he's wearing are meant to inhibit there effectiveness/lethalness as well. Basically, he's "muzzled", in terms of both mouth and claw. So he can fight and punch and stuff, but his covered claws can't cut and rend as effectively as if they were uncovered and thus are, theoretically, less lethal.
Posted by: Austin Gorton | January 17, 2018 6:18 PM
Comments are now closed.
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