Thursday, January 29, 2015

#tbt: X-Treme X-Men #2

#tbt: X-Treme X-Men #2 – Rogue is attacked by Vargas, who defeats her. Beast and Psylocke come to the scene, and again Vargas easily beats Hank, breaking many of his bones; only Psylocke is left standing. In the following battle Vargas kills her by running his sword though her gut. Written by Chris Claremont and art by Salvador Larroca. Read full summary here.


Gaile Peck said...

I hated this story. To this day, I still hate it. It's treatment of Psylocke was particularly grisly and tasteless, especially from a writer (Claremont) and artist (Larroca) who both claim that Psylocke is one of their favoured characters. And Vargas... one of the dumbest villains ever, with "abilities" that could in no way beat any of the INDIVIDUALS on this team, much less the entire team. Aside from Larocca's art, just awful in every way.

Rahsaan Chisolm said...

Well, Gaile... Playing Devil's Advocate... Chris has said admitted that this story was meant to result... later the story of Psylocke returning in her original form, but then someone decided to make Rachel be the telepath in that story toward the end of X-Treme, so maybe that's why they treated the Kwannon body with such disdain, like Land and Yost did to the her true body. LOL.

Rahsaan Chisolm said...

Also, I hated this story as well. To be honest I hated this entire volume of X-Treme X-Men. This, as well as the second volume with the Dazzler and her team of alternate realty sub-ins. Marvel should never revisit any kind of X-Treme X-Men. They always seem to blow.

FSaker said...

Larroca's art in X-Treme X-Men is probably his best work ever, and the team's uniforms were all very cool (especially Psylocke's), fitting with Morrison's theme of more realistic uniforms while still looking like superhero costumes.

But yes, the story was bad. Vargas is one of the worst villains ever created, and Psylocke's death felt like just a cheap way to show him as a credible threat (and yet, it didn't work) and justify Beast's transformation and Sage's status as a Mary Sue.

Even the justification that she would return in her original body made no sense. If Bogan meant to revive and control her, why would he use her old body (which should be severely decomposed)?

Although it did make more sense than bringing Rachel back from nowhere: Claremont stated that Quesada didn't allow him to resurrect Betsy, as back then Marvel was under the "dead means dead" policy, so he had to pick a different telepath. Fortunately, the minute Marvel changed this policy and Whedon brought Colossus back, Claremont brought Betsy back.

Alexander said...

I was a kid around this time so I remember borrowing the tpb's of this volume from my brother. I always liked the art but even then something about Claremont's writing bothered me. The same for his New Excalibur run. I know it's common knowledge he doesn't care for the Kwannon body but I think the story was written poorly to help justify the end of the series having her return. Maybe if editorial didn't force him to change it to Rachel out of the blue I wouldn't have minded the poor execution. Somedays I wonder does Claremont's writing style have a place in todays Marvel? Not saying a lot of the current writers are great either.

Rahsaan Chisolm said...


You are right. To some this may be heresy, but I'm gonna be straightup real. Claremont had officially morphed into a hack. All his recent Marvel work sucks to the nth degree. X-Men Forever, the Nightcrawler series... and who can forget the egregiously craptastic notion of R'Chel the Dino-Woman????

FSaker said...

No, Claremont's writing style doesn't really fit with Marvel nowadays. First, because the stories he's been writing in recent years lack all the masterful planning, creativity and boldness that he showed in his golden years.

But, even if we still had Claremont writing like he used to, he always used lots of descriptive text in dialogues, narration boxes and everything else, while most of the current writers tend to use few words in their stories (which sometimes is a problem as well), sometimes with entire pages without a single word in them.

That said, the man was brilliant back then, and no one can take it away from Claremont. The Dark Phoenix Saga, the Days of Future Past story, the God Loves, Man Kills graphic novel, are all just few of the masterpieces he wrote.

(plus, I must admit that I really like his and Manara's X-Women graphic novel... yes, it's a bit silly, but nevertheless a fun, light, enjoyable story that should have just replaced Rachel with Jean - it's not like it was made to fit into a specific place in the X-Men's canon timeline)