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April 8, 2014 / Jett

Uncanny X-Men Vol.1: Revolution Review

Professor Charles Xavier had a dream. He wanted to help create a world in which humans and mutants could happily coexist. He also wanted to create a school that taught mutants how to get the most out of their powers in the name of good.

Cyclops sort of wants to follow that dream. As new mutants begin to pop up, he wants to rebuild Charles’ school and be a leader for all of mutant kind. The problem is, Scott Summers is down to kill any humans that want to hurt his fellow mutants. Also, he’s sort of a fugitive wanted for the murder of Charles Xavier. Together with Emma Frost, Magneto and Magik, they begin to build a new X-Men.

There are a lot of interesting wrinkles to the way things are set up. Due to the events leading up to this, Cyclops and Emma Frost are trying to deal with life together after breaking up. With Magneto in the group and the things he does in this first set of issues, it’s hard to get a read on his true motives. All three of them have to deal with the fact that their powers haven’t been working right since they were corrupted by the Phoenix Force during Avengers vs. X-Men. On top of all of that, Uncanny X-Men can heavily leverage material from the excellent All New X-Men, as both stories run in parallel and intertwine at key points. Issue #4 is a great example of this put to work, as it retells the stand-off that took place in front of the Jean Grey school from the other side.

The components for this series to be great are here. However, I don’t think they come together very well in this debut outing. Save for a few panels from issue #5, I’m not particularly fond of the art. It’s nothing spectacular to me, and it falls short of the bar set by All New X-Men and X-Men. Also, too much of these initial issues are spent on exposition and conversations that don’t add value to the story. I get that in their underpowered state, there isn’t much they can currently do on the battlefield, but more must be done to keep things interesting, especially when it has so much potential to work with.

I’m not giving up on Uncanny X-Men just yet, but Vol. 1: Revolution is a bit of a disappointment. It’s great setup is squandered by uninspired art and a plodding story that struggles to make good with the assets it has available to it. I already bought Vol. 2: Broken, so they’ve got me for at least one more book. However, I’m really hoping this series finds it footing there, or I’ll move on without it.

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