Tuesday, June 30, 2009

X-Position: Matt Fraction + Psylocke's New Uniform!

Writer Matt Fraction joins CBR's X-Position today to answer questions about “Uncanny X-Men” and “Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Utopia.”

What was your thinking behind bringing back Psylocke's original body, only to fry it and put her back in her second one? Nothing against “Asian Psylocke,” I'm just curious…

To be brutally honest? I saw more value in bringing a character of color into the book than yet another white face. When I came in there were a whole lot of dudes and a whole lot of white folk around; I wanted very much to diversify the genders and the colors of the team somewhat without turning the thing into a Benetton ad or the cast of “Voyager” or whatever. I figured, since we were already asking people to buy a story in which a magic, bodiless psychic spirit performed a grand act of transdimensional psychic necromancy, that your suspension of disbelief had either long ago shattered or was impervious to anything I could throw at it...so why not? Besides, going forward with Psylocke, we'll see that while she might look the same on the outside, inside is a different matter...

"Uncanny X-Men" #514 pencils by Terry Dodson.
How do you guys like Psylocke's new uniform? She's the one on the right. :D

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Uncanny X-Men #513 Preview

Cover by: Terry Dodson
Writer: Matt Fraction
Pencils: Terry Dodson
Inks: Rachel Dodson
Colored by: Justin Ponsor
Lettered by: VC - Joe Caramagna

The Story: “Utopia: Chapter 2” Who are the Dark X-Men? He has his own Avengers team and now Norman Osborn has his own X-Men team. The other shoe has finally dropped and Emma Frost has betrayed Cyclops and the rest of the X-Men. And that’s just one of the huge surprises in “Utopia”. Is that Namor? Cloak and Dagger? Professor X?! The thing that you aren’t ready for is that Osborn is right.

In Stores: July 1, 2009

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Utopia #1 Spoilers

Utopia • Chapter 1

Spoilers: Simon Trask's Humanity Now! Coalition marches all the way to San Francisco. Mutants on the other side demand that they keep their right to procreation. Hellion and other students lose their minds and start pounding on everyone. What follows is crowd control by the police leading to the arrest of Beast. The Mayor tells Cyclops he should have controlled the mutants, and broadcast of the riots in San Francisco are shown around the world. Later that night, protests continue. Various mutants are shown marching in different areas all leading to City Hall. Riots break out everywhere involving mutants, humans and the police. Norman Osborn decides to step in. He imposes martial law on the state of California and sends in his Dark Avengers with orders to contain the crowds, protect civilians and arrest any mutant who breaks the law. While these riots are going on, Emma Frost goes to meet Norman. He tells her their deal was that she would keep mutants quiets and he would stay out of their business. Now Norman offers Emma a new plan: she will lead a team of mutants as the face of law and order. He then appears in front of press and declares Scott Summers a person to be arrested. Norman then introduces Professor Xavier to the journalists, who sides with Osborn and support his views. Beast, who is in a jail cell, is contacted by the real Charles Xavier, also arrested, who says that somehow they are taking their powers.

Notes: Writer Jason Aaron stated recently that Mystique will have a short story in the Dark X-Men: The Beginning mini-series. I guess now it's quite clear what role Mystique will play!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Uncanny X-Men #512 Spoilers

Spoilers: Beast and the X-Club prepare to travel back in time in 1906 to investigate the birth of the mutant race, more precisely to gather genetic material from Dr. Nemesis' parents. Angel and Psylocke soon join them, and Betsy explains that she has regained some degree of telepathy. In 1906, Dr. Nicola Bradley - Nemesis' father - works on a generator-battery, when Hellfire Club guards break into his house in order to steal the device. Nicola and his wife - Catherine - manage to escape. At the Hellfire Club, Cornelius Shaw - Sebastian Shaw's grandfather - is furious at his guards' failure. It's explained that their sensitives foresaw possible evolutionary outbreakes. Their goal is to preserve mankind. This is why they needed the gadget, to activate the first Sentinel - built to fight this new race of mutants. Meanwhile, Nicola finally finishes the generator-battery he's been working on, and Catherine tells him she's pregnant. After a first failed attempt, the X-Club decide to split into two groups to approach both the Bradleys independently. Later, Catherine is attacked by Hellfire guards inside her house, but Angel, Kavita and Dr. Takiguchi rescue her. Dr. Nemesis takes a blood sample from his mother and reveals that she will die during the childbirth. In the meantime, Cornelius and his peers finally get ahold of the device after capturing Nicola. Shortly after, Beast, Psylocke and Madison Jeffries reach the Hellfire Club, but the Sentinel is finally activated, and it starts chasing them. Warren becomes Archangel and flies with Betsy, so they can ambush the Sentinel's pilots. Madison overloads the generator-battery inside the Sentinel with as much electricity as possible until it explodes. As the great San Francisco earthquake begins to destroy the city, a sharp debris from the Sentinel crosses Nicola's body, killing him. Nemesis takes a blood sample from him and orders his mother to bury both samples in the Golden Gate Park, as the time warp device wouldn't allow genetic material from others, other than the X-Club members, to return to the present. Upon returning to the present, the X-Club finds out Catherine has buried the samples at the exact location the Dreaming Celestial statue stands in. Next: Utopia.

Notes: In Uncanny X-Men #500, the High Evolutionary removed a specific item from the Dreaming Celestial's head through a process Magneto refers to as a lobotomy. Later, in Uncanny X-Men #507, the object is used in an experiment on Magneto which appears to restore his mutant gene. Could it be the blood samples from the Bradley couple? Also, Psylocke doesn't show up in Utopia #1, so I'll post spoilers for it later, k? :D

"Uncanny X-Men" #510 & #511 Sell Out And Return With New Printings

Official Press Release: Marvel is pleased to announce that Uncanny X-Men #510 and Uncanny X-Men #511 have sold out at Diamond (though copies may be available at the retail level) and will return with Uncanny X-Men #510 Second Printing Variant and Uncanny X-Men #511 Second Printing Variant! Acclaimed writer Matt Fraction and superstar artist Greg Land amp up the flagship series as they conclude Madelyne Pryor’s assault on the X-Men! What do these bombshell baddies known as the Sisterhood want with the X-Men? And how does their endgame involve the enigmatic mutant known as Jean Grey? Uncanny X-Men #510 Second Printing Variant and Uncanny X-Men #511 Second Printing Variant each feature the art of Land on their covers.

Critics are raving about Uncanny X-Men:

“It's nice to see Uncanny X-Men once again take center stage as the X-book that matters.”-- Timothy Callahan, ComicBookResources.Com

“It's one of the more cohesive Fraction efforts yet, and the issue flourishes as a result.”— Bryan Joel, IGN.Com

Marvel urges retailers to check their orders on all Uncanny X-Men issues, as the series continues to garner buzz from fans and critics alike. How will the battle between the X-Men and the Sisterhood end?? Find out in Uncanny X-Men #510 Second Printing Variant and Uncanny X-Men #511 Second Printing Variants!

Why do we care? Uncanny X-Men #510 Second Printing cover features Psylocke. :D

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Chris Yost Gives The Lowdown on X-Men: Psylocke

Marvel.com: Betsy Braddock returns to Japan in the four-issue X-Men: Psylocke limited series debuting this October and written by Chris Yost. The series will follow Psylocke as she seeks to place her former body in its final resting place following the events of the recent "Sisterhood" story arc in Uncanny X-Men.

As Yost sees it, while recent events for Betsy would seem rather extraordinary to most, for her it comes off as relatively normal.

"Betsy's been through a lot in her life, and it's been flat out crazy," Yost reminds. "Mojo, fake eyes, the Siege Perilous, Revanche, the Crimson Dawn, power swapping, dying, being recreated by her mad brother, dimension hopping nuts. So being pulled from another dimension as a test subject for Cyclops' dead wife to try and inhabit Jean Grey's body? Just another day in the office—or so you might think. But there's certainly something she's not dealing with, a loss she thought she made her peace with a long time ago: Her own identity. So much insanity has come down on her, she really has to question who she is. Is this what her life is now? Anyone else would go mad."

As Yost listed, throughout her history Psylocke has played a number of roles. But in all that time, a number of things have never changed at the core of her character.

"Psylocke's constant is her toughness," the writer relates. "Her spirit. Anyone else at some point would say to heck with it all, I'm out. But Betsy keeps on fighting. She's a hero through and through, and now that's literally all she has. That's her only identity: X-Man. She used to be a real person, but now she's been taken apart and reassembled so many times."

Yost promises to pick things up shortly after the "Sisterhood" arc, calling it "a direct sequel" to that storyline.

"It's the story of Psylocke and her body," elaborates Yost. "Putting it to rest. But surprise! Things get complicated."

Many of those complications stem from the return of Matsu'o, who originally placed Psylocke's mind in a different body.

"Kwannon, better known now as the Japanese body of Elisabeth Braddock, was the crime lord Matsu'o's lover," recounts Yost. "Ill-fated lover. She dies, and he and Psylocke made their peace. But the situation has changed now. And he's back in Psylocke's life, but for a radically different reason."

Finally, Yost promises fans both old and new will have a hard time turning this limited series down:

"If you like sexy powerful women kicking ninja butt with psychic powers and a sword—and who doesn't—buckle up. This book is for you. And her final adversary is a doozy."

Monday, June 22, 2009

Chris Yost: Settling the Ghosts of Psylocke

Newsarama: And you thought Psylocke had been through a lot in her recent appearances in Uncanny X-Men. Just you wait. Plus sketches by Harvey Tolibao, the penciler to the mini-series!

November will see writer Chris Yost head up a four issue Psylocke miniseries with art by Harvey Tolibao which will kick off with a trip to Japan and a reunion with Matsu'o Tsurayaba. Madness, violence, and ninjas follow.

We spoke with Yost for more on what readers can expect in the coming miniseries.

Newsarama: First off Chris - you were an X-Men fan long before you got into weaving their tales - what's your first X-Memory?

Chris Yost: Not as long as some. The very first time I read X-Men in a comic was when Spider-Man took them down in Secret Wars #2. I had no idea who they were... although I'd seen Nightcrawler in an issue of Amazing Spider-Man and didn't realize it.

Then I picked up Uncanny a while after that... but the issue I picked up had Forge, Illyana, a powerless Storm, Dire Wraiths and Rom Spaceknight. And Illyana Rasputin and Amanda Sefton. So, it was awesome... but I had no idea who the hell they were. And they didn't have Wikipedia back then. But I was hooked.

NRAMA: Obviously, you follow along with the series, and know what's coming up, so what was your reaction when it became clear that Psylocke was coming back in a big way in Uncanny?

CY: My reaction was 'Finally.' Psylocke is one of the new new wave of X-Men, one of the ones that I got introduced to as I read the book. Her, Gambit, Psylocke, Longshot, Dazzler... the Silvestri/Mister Sinister/Morlock Massacre days. The anything could happen days.

NRAMA: So spell things out a little for where this miniseries picks up with her - Betsy is back, and Kwannon is gone, as per what Madelyne explained to the Sisterhood?

CY: This is post Sisterhood, so Betsy is back and Kwannon is gone... but Betsy is in Kwannon's body. Elisabeth Braddock's 'birth' body is dead. Again.

NRAMA: Again. Since we're talking about Madelyne, where does Besty fit in in your mind, in regards to the psychics of the X-Men’s world? Just how powerful is she?

CY: Betsy is one of the planet's most powerful telepaths... of course, there aren't that many left. She's not Xavier or Jean Grey level, but she can hold her own. But what she can do that the others can't is focus her telepathy into a psychic knife. So she can physically and psychically kick your ass, and look amazing doing it.

NRAMA: Groundwork out of the way, let's talk about your miniseries - was this something you volunteered for, came up with, or were just the guy who picked up the phone and said, "Hell, yes, I'll write it!"?

CY: Much like the recent Storm mini, editor Daniel Ketchum called me up and asked if I'd be interested. I can't imagine a character that I'd answer 'no' for, but with Psylocke, it was an easy decision.

NRAMA: While this starts as Betsy looking to do the right thing, it quickly becomes a revenge flick on paper. Who is she gunning for?

CY: Matsu'o Tsurayaba. But wait, you say... the two of them made their peace! She's got nothing against him. Well, just wait.

NRAMA: Oh, like we’re going to let you go with that... Why's she got such a mad on for Matsu'o and figures she must stop him?

CY: Matsu'o does something pretty unspeakable. For a very simple reason, he hurts Betsy in a very personal, very violent way. It's pretty shocking, and at first glance non-sensical. But by the end, it will all make sense. Fingers crossed.

NRAMA: What's your take on these eddys that flow off the main X-Men current like Psylocke and her whole adventure? In a way, you could argue that it was almost an afterthought when Betsy and Kwannon were mashed up, and here, a couple of decades later, we're still telling and reading stories about it...

CY: This is a story about Betsy coming back to the world, trying to figure out who she is and what her place is... and having an option taken off the table in a horrific way. Betsy has been on a rollercoaster, that's for sure. There's a laundry list of weirdness and complexity that's been heaped on her, but at her core, she's still Betsy. She's a hero, and a fighter. She's got an edge. She's sexy as hell, to the point where Cyclops finds himself staring at her.

This mini does touch on the 'two bodies' bit, but it's the set up for a pretty personal conflict. It's about revenge, but it's about mercy. After everything Psylocke has been through, does she have any humanity left?

NRAMA: What do you want this miniseries to do for Psylocke as a character when it's all said and done?

CY: I want this mini series to remind people how and why we're still telling stories about Psylocke. To show the youngsters why she kicks ass, and remind the rest of us what we love about her.

NRAMA: Can't let you go without a tease - how does issue #1 kick off?

CY: Psylocke kills some guy.

Psylocke Heads To Japan

IGN: Anyone who has been following Uncanny X-Men over the past few months knows that Psylocke made a grand return to life. This act of resurrection is just the latest in a long, complicated string of body-switches, deaths, and cross-dimensional travel. At the end of the day, though, all that matters is that the X-Men have their own personal psychic ninja back on staff.

Psylocke will quickly be playing an integral role in Matt Fraction's future issues of Uncanny, but that's not the only place fans will be able to catch the adventures of Betsy Braddock. At Heroes Con this weekend, Marvel revealed that Chris Yost (X-Force) will be writing a new four-issue mini-series called X-Men: Psylocke, with the first issue due in November.

We're always eager to chat with Yost about all mutant matters, so we talked to him and editor Daniel Ketchum about the premise behind this Psylocke book. The fact that Marvel are so quick to compare this story to Kill Bill has us salivating at the thought of stylish ninja action, and from what we've heard so far, it sounds like that's what Yost intends to deliver.

IGN Comics: Psylocke is alive and well once more. What is her current mental state after her resurrection? Does she feel she has any place with the X-Men these days?

Chris Yost: I imagine that Psylocke feels pretty disconnected from not only the X-Men, but from herself these days. Imagine what she's been through in her relatively young life... the insanity that she's had to deal with. Then death. Then resurrection. Then getting pulled into another dimension with alternate versions of her teammates and friends. I think maybe she made out with alternate universe Sabretooth.

And now, she's back, pulled home as a test run for body snatching by the Red Queen.

Luckily, this series doesn't touch on any of that, except a bit of the last part. So the question is, to Psylocke, what is real? Who is she? What's important to her?

IGN Comics: Why does she choose to return Kwannon's body to Japan? Is this the late ninja's final wish?

Yost: It's out of respect, not only to Kwannon but to herself. This is the body she was born in, and while she's accepted her new body... she's still got fond memories of her original. So she wants it to be treated well.

That doesn't go to plan.

IGN Comics: How do Psylocke's powers function now that she's back in her original body? Is she not quite the ninja she once was?

Yost: She's not shadow melding, she's maybe a little telekinetic. She's got high level telepathy, which she can focus into a psychic knife. She's got the muscle memory of being a bad-ass ninja assassin, so she can move, knows martial arts, and is lethal with a katana. That's it.

Daniel Ketchum: Psylocke's power set has been a mish-mash of things over past few years. But to boil it down for the purposes of our story: Betsy's a little telekinetic and a little telepathic, but mostly, yeah, she's a bad-ass ninja.

IGN Comics: Describe the opponent Psylocke faces in this story. What sets her on the path of revenge?

Yost: Matsu'o Tsurayaba has a long history with Psylocke and the X-Men, going back to the day that Psylocke went from pink butterflies to ninja assassin. But they made their peace, right? That's what Psylocke thought. So when Matsu'o does something fairly unspeakable, it makes her anger all the more... angrier.

IGN Comics: This story is being compared to Kill Bill. Is that a stylistic comparison as well?

Yost: It's a revenge story, but it's a little more complicated than Kill Bill. As for the style, I'll leave that to Daniel.

Ketchum: I actually think a comparison to Kill Bill applies to Psylocke herself more than the book as a whole. When I signed on to edit this book, the first question I asked was: What kind of Psylocke book would I want to read? I love the idea of Psylocke being a force of nature…walking carnage, ninja-shaped death. I want her to be a complete bad-ass and a force to be reckoned with, not just that purple-haired chick on the B-roster of the fourth X-Men book from the left.

And, as a sidenote, if there's anyone who can do that for Psylocke, it's Chris.

IGN Comics: Chris, what made you want to be the one to tackle Psylocke's story following her return?

Yost: All Daniel has to do is call me up and say, 'Would you be interested in..' and I'm already sold. In this case, with Psylocke, I was sold on her as of New Mutants Annual #2. Seeing her grow over the years, survive the mutant massacre, take a more and more bad-ass stance with the X-Men, and finally see her evolve into what she's known as today... she's an amazing character that's been on one hell of a journey.

We just want to remind people why we love her.

For instance, I love her because of that shot of her coming out of the water that Jim Lee drew, which made Cyclops go all slobbery right in front of Jean Grey.

IGN Comics: We suspect Captain Britain will be interested to know his sister is alive again. Will he play any role in this story?

Yost: Ha ha, poor Brian. He's always the last to know. Nope. He's fighting Dracula in one of my favorite books, Captain Britain and the MI:13 by Paul Cornell. So go buy it!!

IGN Comics: Anything else you'd like to add about the Psylocke mini at this point?

Yost: If you've been reading comics lately, coming away feeling empty... wondering why you're not seeing incredibly sexy, bad-ass telepathic women fighting ninjas on a quest for revenge, culminating in a battle with one of the most vicious killers on the planet...

...buckle up.

Uncanny X-Men #513 Variant Cover

Marvel has revealed the variant cover to Uncanny X-Men #513 by Simone Bianchi. It's Psylocke vs. Ares! The God of War looks good. Psylocke... looks unusual.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Breaking News: Yost Talks Psylocke Mini!

CBR: You can't keep a good British, psychic, mutant ninja down for long.

After a wild resurrection and sudden body transfer in the pages of Matt Fraction and Greg Land's "Uncanny X-Men" #511, the once and future X-Woman Psylocke bounces back towards her '90s ninja roots in "X-Men: Psylocke," a four-issue Marvel miniseries announced today at Charlotte, North Carolina's Heroes Con. Written by Christopher Yost with art by a creative team yet to be revealed, the series takes the newly reconstituted sister of Captain Britain on a different kind of revenge mission meant to remind fans why the katana-wielding warrior was one of the more popular X-Men characters during the property's heyday.

"The mandate on this series was 'Tell us a story that reminds everyone of why she's so kick ass,'" laughed Yost in an exclusive first interview with CBR. The writer said Psylocke’s general appeal is almost too easy, while digging into Psylocke's history gets infinitely harder. "The bottom line is that the great things about her is that she kicks ass and she's sexy. Those are two things that are not going to be hard to incorporate into any story. But when you look at the history of Psylocke, it's just batshit insane – all of the stuff she had to deal with: the Mojo stuff and the crazy, other-dimensional Captain Britain stuff. Having bionic eyes and getting switched into an Asian body. Getting the Crimson Dawn, which I'm not even clear on what that is. It's like...where do you start?"

However, despite regaining her senses and her ninja warrior body at the end of the "Sisterhood" arc in "Uncanny," Betsy Braddock still has a mess of a life (or lives) to clean up before she can move forward with her team – starting with what to do with her own corpse. "It was tricky to decide what aspect of the character to take on," explained Yost. "We figured coming out of 'Sisterhood,' the matter at hand was that there are two Psylockes sitting there. At the end of it, one will be alive and one won't. So out of respect, Psylocke is returning her other body to its grave. That's a pretty straightforward place to start...and then things get a little complicated."

While drafting the first script, Yost found one element of the story surprisingly uncomplicated: how to portray the long-lost character's personality. “Psylocke doesn't take any shit from anybody. But it's tricky because in opposition to Emma Frost who's very snooty and sarcastic, Psylocke’s very no-nonsense and tough," he explained, noting that one of the series villains will be the ninja master who removed Betsy from her original body to begin with.

"Matsu'o Tsurayaba is involved," Yost confirmed, adding the obvious fact that Psylocke aims to kill her former abuser, though twists abound. "There's a very specific reason that she wants him dead, and there's a very exciting villain that she has to overcome to make this happen. In this story, it became Psylocke fighting ninjas in Japan and that stuff, but there's a very personal story to it. It's deadly personal to Psylocke. It's her body."

And while some fans may hold allegiance to the character's original form, Yost and editor Daniel Ketchum agreed that Fraction and Land's use of the Asian version made the most sense. "She definitely is going back to her ninja assassin look," he said, citing J. Scott Campbell's variant for "Uncanny #510" as a prime example of Psylocke. "We tend to think of that as what people identify as the definitive Psylocke. I still kind of like the light pink butterfly Psylocke here and there, but I think for most modern readers Psylocke is that person.

“But that's part of the story. Who is Psylocke? She has to think to herself, waking up in the morning, 'What shell am I in today?' She's been jerked around the multiverse for a while now. So a lot of the story is setting her up and reestablishing her in the 'mainstream' Marvel Universe. This is who she is, where she is and what her worldview and attitude on things is. This is how she functions in the X-Universe.

“And there's fighting!"

HeroesCon 2009: Psylocke Mini by Chris Yost Announced!

Newsarama: Psylocke, a four-issue miniseries beginning in November, written by Chris Yost with art by Harvey Tolibao. The storyline of the mini will flow from Psylocke’s recent appearances in Uncanny X-Men and her involvement with The Sisterhood.

More information coming soon!

Friday, June 19, 2009

A Dark Utopia for the X-Men

IGN: Matt Fraction chats about the upcoming Uncanny X-Men/Dark Avengers crossover known as Utopia, as well as the sad state of Tony Stark's life. Click on the link to read the rest of the interview. Very cool stuff about Utopia!

IGN: Uncanny #511 came out last week, and the cover was pretty blatantly teasing the return of Jean Grey. Did you enjoy being able to pull the wool over readers' eyes for a while?
Fraction: You know, I always feel bad for outright lying. [laughs] I just hope people were entertained. The real misdirect was so we could bring Psylocke back. I hope people were at least surprised by that. I think there was profound meaning in Jean's death, and I'm not looking to bring her back.

IGN: As you mentioned, the character who did make her return this month was Psylocke. What made you want to bring her back?
Fraction: The team is pretty masculine, and we were looking for ways to bulk up the females on the team. I think she's a great, interesting character, and what we've done with her kind of synthesizes her two histories into one person. That'll give us some cool places to go with her character in the next year. It's not quite the same Psylocke everyone has seen before. Her power-set is a little bit different. Her personality is a little bit different. She's these two synthesized Psylockes as one with bits of each combined into this one person. And she's cool. She's got a great power-set and a cool costume. She's a super-powerful woman, and we don't get enough of those.

IGN: And she's a ninja. You can't really go wrong with that.
Fraction: And she's a ninja. And Asian. So it's win-win-win. Psychic ninja! Who doesn't want to write about a psychic ninja?

IGN: Is she going to be playing a big role in the series right away?
Fraction: She plays a big role in issue #512. She also shows up in X-Men/Dark Avengers and going forward. I'm looking forward to her being a member of the team.

IGN: What can you reveal about #512?
Fraction: I've been really happy with the book so far, and I've been having a great time. I think both #512 and Utopia are the two best stories I've done so far. #512 is a standalone issue. It's a fun time-travel story about the X-Club. Mutants have been around for hundreds of thousands of years, but as a racial addition to the planet's human birth rate, mutants are a little more than a hundred years old. We've often called Namor the first mutant. But he was really sort of the first mutant of the popular wave. Where the mutant birth curve really started to skyrocket was around Namor's time.

And this is a story about the X-Club traveling back about 100 years to investigate a pair of humans about to have a child that will be a mutant. In trying to investigate the mystery of M-Day and how to reverse it, they quite literally find themselves searching for the origin of the species. They're trying to figure out what it is about these parents. Why them – why mutants? And it's fun. Yanick Paquette's art is amazing. The colors are beautiful. I'm so, so proud of how the issue came out. It's a lot of fun. Like I said, it's a self-contained, done-in-one, 34-page adventure.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Uncanny X-Men #512 Preview

Cover by: Yanick Paquette
Written by: Matt Fraction
Pencils: Yanick Paquette
Inks: Karl Story
Colored by: Justin Ponsor
Lettered by: VC - Joe Caramagna

The Story: "The Origins of the Species"
As the X-Men reel from the return of one of the greatest X-Ladies, Beast and Angel take the X-Club back to 1906 to investigate the origins of the mutant species as we know it. See the earliest stages of the Hellfire Club and the very first Sentinel ever! This story is not to be missed!

In Stores: June 24, 2009

Everything You Need To Know... Utopia


“Utopia” is a crossover between "Dark Avengers" and "Uncanny X-Men". It will be written by Matt Fraction. The first chapter of the crossover will be released next week - on June 24th. After a mutant riot in San Francisco, Norman Osborn tries to enforce peace by creating his own team of Dark X-Men to serve in much the same way the Dark Avengers did, and using both his teams to bring down the real X-Men.

Meet the Dark Avengers

Norman Osborn: “The perfect manipulator”
Venom: “Deeply psychotic
Bullseye: “Kills people without remorse”
Daken: “Eeverything Wolverine isn't
Sentry: Norman's ace in the hole
+ Moonstone, Ares and Noh-Varr

Meet the Dark X-Men

Emma Frost: Playing the very difficult cards that she's been dealt
Professor X: Wants what he always wants, peaceful coexistence
Namor: For him this is more of an association, a political alliance
Daken: Loves the glory, the fame and the fortune that comes along with it
Cloak and Dagger: They're fish out of water, they're not team players
Mimic: Really thinks this is his shot to be something, to be somebody
Weapon Omega: It's like having a killer shark on the team

X-Men: Legacy #225
After Professor Xavier convinces the Acolytes that mutantkind should stick together in San Francisco, he receives a very unusual visit by Norman Osborn.

Chapter 1
Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Utopia #1
When mutant riots break out in San Francisco, Norman Osborn declares martial law and sends the Dark Avengers in to quell the riots and take down the X-Men.

Chapter 2
Uncanny X-Men #513
He has his own Avengers team and now Norman Osborn has his own X-Men team. The other shoe has finally dropped and Emma Frost has betrayed Cyclops and the rest of the X-Men.

Chapter 3
Dark Avengers #7
San Francisco teeters on the brink of absolute chaos and the X-Men keep getting in the way of Norman's vision of law and order.

Chapter 4
Uncanny X-Men #514
Norman Osborn’s victory in San Francisco is cemented when the Dark X-Men succeed where the X-Men can’t.

Chapter 5
Dark Avengers #8
The X-Men strike at Norman, at H.A.M.M.E.R., at his fraud X-Men and his sham Avengers all at once!

Chapter 6
Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Exodus #1
The final battle for the Dark Avengers and the X-Men that will change the status quo for the Marvel Universe.

Dark X-Men: The Confession #1
Emma Frost's secret dealings with the Cabal come to light and her life will never be the same.


X-Men: Legacy #226
Rogue, Gambit and Danger go to join the X-Men in San Francisco, only to find it in flames. Will they side with Cyclops and the X-Men? Or go to Osborn and his Dark X-Men?

X-Men: Legacy #227
While San Francisco is still reeling from the onslaught of the Dark Avengers, Rogue struggles to cope with the power and perspective of a God.

Dark X-Men: The Beginning #1
Who are the Dark X-Men and how did they come to be?

Dark X-Men: The Beginning #2
This first two issues focus on Emma Frost, Mimic, Cloak & Dagger, Daken, Weapon X and Dark Beast!

Dark X-Men: The Beginning #3
In this issue, Emma Frost convinces Namor to join the team. And learn where Professor X fits into Utopia.

Solicits for the core X-Books after the crossover have been classified until next Monday. Rumor has it that some announcements concerning the future of the X-verse will be made this weekend at a Comic Con. Uncanny X-Men #515 by Fraction and Greg Land is classified until next Monday. X-Men: Legacy Annual #1 by Mike Carey and Daniel Acuña is already solicited on Marvel.com to go on sale in September. Last but not least Astonishing X-Men #31 by Warren Ellis, also not solicited yet, welcomes its new penciler: Phil Jimenez.

Even though Psylocke doesn't show up on the Utopia preview, she's already confirmed to play a part in this crossover. Terry Dodson also confirmed she will be wearing a different uniform other than her old Jim Lee design. When asked about it on his Yahoo Groups, Dodson told Psylocke fans to wait until August. Fraction also talked a little about her in this Podcast. He said she is terrific character and that it will be great to writer her after the crossover is done. That's it! Utopia begins next Wednesday, when the first Chapter is released. Keep an eye out for it. :D

Monday, June 15, 2009

X-Solicits for September 2009

Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Exodus #1
Written by: Matt Fraction
Pencils by: Mike Dedodato
Cover by: Steve McNiven
Variant Cover by: Simone Bianchi
UTOPIA: Chapter 6
The climactic conclusion to the crossover event of 2009 is here! This is it, the final battle for the Dark Avengers and the X-Men that will change the status quo for the Marvel Universe. Emma Frost's betrayal comes home to roost. Cyclops' plan clicks into place, but is it too late? What can the X-Men do against the Sentry and Ares?

Dark X-Men: The Confession #1
Written by: Craig Kyle & Christopher Yost
Pencils by: TBA
Cover by: Yanick Paquette
Emma Frost's secret dealings with the Cabal come to light and her life will never be the same.

Uncanny X-Men #515
Classified until 6/22/09

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Exodus & Confession Revealed

IGN has revealed the covers to "Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Exodus" and "Dark X-Men: The Confession", which act as the finale and epilogue for the Utopia crossover, beginning this month. Steven McNiven provides the Exodus cover, which features our own Psylocke! As for The Confession, it's penciled by Yannick Paquette.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Take 10: Claremont's X-Men

Marvel.com: The Secret Cabal counts down the top 10 X-Men to flourish under legendary writer Chris Claremont! Please, take your time and vote for Psylocke on this very same link. :D

10. Gambit

09. Colossus

08. Psylocke

First Appearance: Captain Britain #8 (1976)

Claremont Tenure: Uncanny X-Men #213 (1987) - X-Men #3 (1991); X-Men #100 (2000) - X-Treme X-Men #2 (2001); Uncanny X-Men #455 (2005) - Uncanny X-Men #474 (2006); Exiles #90 (2007) - New Exiles #18 (2009)

Why She Makes the List: "Everyone loves a purple-headed British mutant with psychic abilities whose powers manifest via psychic butterflies, right? Of course. But what do they like even better? A British mutant with psychic abilities whose consciousness and powers have been transported into the body of a super-sexy ninja, a switch which makes the power manifest as a psychic blade. Hell. Yes. Chris Claremont reminds us that ninjas are always awesome." – Secret Cabal member Agent_M

Spotlight Comic: Uncanny X-Men #256 — Psylocke is reborn as Lady Mandarin!

07. Rogue

06. Professor X

05. Nightcrawler

04. Wolverine

03. Storm

02. Phoenix

01. Kitty Pryde