Comics – X-Men: X-Tinction Agenda

2 11 2006


X-Men: X-Tinction Agenda TPB

Originally uploaded by swftoys.

Collecting Uncanny X-Men #270-272, X-Factor #60-62, New Mutants #95-97

The words ‘X-Tinction Agenda’ existed for more than a decade as a fragment of my subconscious, laying dormant seemingly without hope of any remembrace again. Well, that was until I came across the trade paperback at a local bookstore. Under the X-Men section of the shelve, the title ‘X-Tinction Agenda’ on one of the TPBs there suddenly seemed so familiar all over again.

My index finger moved quickly to the top of the comic’s spine and with one swift action, I popped the comic into my other waiting hand. A decade long of abstinence from comics saw me saying to myself, “Ayyy… X-tinction Agenda… I remember this!”. Although very excited, I did not pick it up immediately.

Once home, I searched the Internet for comments on this particular X-Men storyline. This was what I found…

Only the Jim Lee issues are worth buying to read. The art for the New Mutants and some X-Factor issues are crap. Nevertheless, it was an important X-Men storyline fans should not miss.

Too bad the summary of comments came down to these 3 lines. The first and third lines confirmed that I will be picking up this trade knowing that quite a number of pages will have ‘crappy’ art.

The day came when I started reading X-Tinction Agenda. Thankfully it began with Uncanny X-Men #270 pencilled by Jim Lee. A great start. Those Genoshan Magistrate’s wheels looked familiar! I gulped down Jim Lee’s art.

Then came the New Mutants issue. My my, the art is really crappy. I was amazed a guy who could draw like that could get his art out on a comic for mass distribution! All facial expressions that displayed some form of emotion was really terribly drawn. The poor pencils were further accentuated by the preceding Jim Lee issue! Anyway, I can’t remember if I got the non-Jim Lee issues. Fortunately, the story was able to carry me through that issue! Looks like those fan comments were pretty spot-on!

Then came X-Factor. I read that issue with my eyeballs staring at the absurd pencils on the characters and I kept mouthing “Goodness”! X-Factor was even worse! Cable looked like a balding fifty-something. Beast looked like a cross between a civet cat and a gorilla. Cyclops looked exactly like those mutants from Frank Miller’s Dark Knight Returns! Plegh! The circular depictions of Havok’s powers was probably the best drawn item in the issue. Again I got through with the storyline.

Getting through the next half of the comic was a rehash of this cycle – Jim Lee – crap – more crap – Jim Lee – crap – more crap. It was those Jim Lee issues that really got me through till the end. I loved the way he draw Wolverine jumping into the thick of a battle or the popular depiction of him slashing with an arm across his body! I must say that one of the greatest strengths of Jim Lee’s pencils is his superb drawing of characters’ faces. And I mean unmasked faces! They are simply so so good to look at! Psylocke looked fantastic. So was Storm, Havok and many others. No wonder they marketed this TPB with Jim Lee’s art on the front cover and the back. Shrewd marketing!

This TPB’s story of X-Men’s struggle with Genosha is a pretty good read, art aside. It was this story arc that had Storm return to her adult form again. It also had an Archangel vs Wolverine scene. Thankfully, the best penciller in this trade drew that part!

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