The newest X-Men series, which debuted in July 2021, has followed the X-Men as they work to protect the world that hates and fears them. Along the way, the X-Men have been doing their best to repair Mutant-human relations by helping as many people as they can, and by forging meaningful relationships with the humans they help.
The events of this latest X-Men title have set the stage for the upcoming conflicts of the Krakoa era. Orchis, the anti-Mutant organization, has been gathering strength and employing its own anti-Mutant PR machine. Alien forces have been aligning against the Earth, and some of the X-Men’s past secrets are coming back to haunt them. Krakoa’s team of heroes have faced many crises so far, and there are definitely more to come.
The following contains major spoilers for X-Men Issues #1-17, now available from Marvel Comics.
10 Feilong Transformed Himself And Is Allied With Orchis
The first issue of the newest X-Men series introduced readers to one of its villains, a rich Chinese scientist named Feilong, who had been actively planning to terraform Mars commercially. After the Mutants transformed Mars into a habitable planet for the people of Arakko first, Feilong’s plans were ruined.
Far from being discouraged by his company’s failure to claim Mars first, Feilong changed tactics and created a base on its moon, Phobos. He gave himself posthuman powers, and allied himself with anti-Mutant organization Orchis. Feilong uses civilian tourists as human shields to prevent an attack and keeps Nightcrawler’s old corpse as a decoration.
9 The X-Men Are Emphasizing Public Relations
The Mutant population of Earth has always dealt with hate, fear, and prejudice. While the Quiet Council of Krakoa handles the business of governing the new Mutant Nation, the X-Men are on the ground, putting a strong emphasis on building positive ties to human communities. In New York, the Krakoan Treehouse in Central Park has become a tourist attraction and a hub for charitable activities assisting the local community.
The emphasis on positive PR hasn’t been all good for the X-Men, however. After Doctor Stasis leaked the secret of Mutant resurrection to reporter Ben Urich, Synch decided to wipe Urich’s memory to prevent the knowledge from getting out. It only worked temporarily before the controversial news spread.
8 Gameworld Was Taking Odds On The Destruction Of Earth
The X-Men fought several major threats before they were able to determine the cause of the attacks. After the High Evolutionary offered to sterilize all humans on their behalf, he telepathically disclosed to Jean Grey that they should look into Gameworld, a casino where people bet on the fate of worlds, including Earth.
The X-Men questioned their allies for information. Destiny helped, despite her obvious hatred for her daughter Rogue’s husband, Gambit. Gambit’s illicit poker game participant Rocket Raccoon eventually led the group to the right location, where the women of the X-Men showed up looking glamorous in last years’ Hellfire Gala outfits.
7 Mojo Created Gameworld And Set Odds Against Earth
When the X-Men traveled to Gameworld to confront its owners and save the Earth from more global disasters, they discovered it was being run by Cordyceps Jones. Jones was an ancient alien fungal spore who can infect and control other living beings. He seized control of the people operating the casino, and by extension, the casino itself. Cordyceps was even able to control Wolverine.
Cordyceps Jones didn’t create Gameworld. Unsurprisingly, it was the X-Men’s old foe Mojo who did that. After he lost control of the casino, Mojo put out the bounty on Earth, knowing that some of Earth’s heroes would inevitably come and destroy the facility. If he couldn’t have it, no one else could either.
6 Orchis Is Gathering Notable Allies And Getting Stronger
The anti-Mutant organization Orchis has been a thorn in the side of the X-Men for years now, and they have only been gaining in strength. Orchis now includes Doctor Statis and his organization, Feilong and his corporate resources, M.O.D.O.K. and A.I.M. (along with scientists from other acronym organizations), Abigail Brand, and a Nimrod sentinel.
The X-Men have infiltrated Orchis facilities several times and have always found dark secrets. Besides sentinel-production facilities and grisly trophies like Nightcrawler’s body or the clothes Stasis killed Cyclops in, Laura Kinney found Lady Deathstrike inside an Orchis lab, where she had been imprisoned for quite some time.
5 Mutants Who Resurrect Get Stronger
Synch is an enormously powerful and useful member of the X-Men because he can replicate the powers of any nearby Mutant. Historically, he needed to be fairly close to the Mutant for his gift to work. However, in Issue #7 (by Gerry Duggan, Pepe Larraz, Marte Gracia, and Clayton Cowles), Synch was able to grab Jean Grey’s psychic powers while she was in space, shocking his teammates.
Later in the series, Professor X revealed his powers had been stronger after being resurrected as well. Laura Kinney accidentally received a full adamantium skeleton instead of just her claws during her resurrection. Now there appear to be plans to make deliberate adjustments to resurrected Mutants to strengthen them.
4 Doctor Stasis Is A Clone Of Nathanial Essex
One of the most shocking revelations from X-Men came after Cyclops confronted the villain Doctor Statis in his lair. Cyclops blasted the mask off Statis’ face, and was shocked to discover that Doctor Statis was, in fact, Nathaniel Essex, the man who became Mister Sinister. Instead of Sinister’s diamond, however, Stasis had a club on his forehead.
In Immortal X-Men this year, flashbacks revealed that Nathanial Essex, when he first transformed into Mister Sinister, had four cloning tanks in his basement. Each one had a symbol corresponding to a suit of cards on their foreheads. Doctor Stasis believes he is the original, but so does Mister Sinister. The spade clone was recently revealed in another X-book, but the heart remains a mystery, so far.
3 Forge Has Been Hiding Dangerous Secrets
One of the heroes on the current X-Men team is Forge, a longtime member with the gift to create amazing technology. Forge has been keeping secrets though, which is one reason Cyclops wanted him on the team. Forge appeared to be doing evil things when he created a suit made from the mutant Caliban, but later it was revealed he had Caliban’s permission.
Forge has been working on a super-suit for weak Mutants, so they can defend themselves. Cyclops briefly borrowed the suit to act as “Captain Krakoa” before his resurrection was revealed. Most of Forge’s time, however, has been spent containing the Vault, which contains many posthuman beings who could wipe out existence should they escape.
2 The Vault Is An Existential Threat To Everyone
A while ago, Synch, Laura Kinney, and Darwin went on a mission inside the Vault, a pocket universe where time travels much more quickly than on Earth-616. Synch and Laura were resurrected, but Darwin got captured. Afterwards, Forge erected a barrier around the Vault and made its inhabitants believe they had conquered the universe.
Outside the Vault, Cyclops and Havok started arguing. Their fight released one of the posthumans from the Vault, and it took the combined strength of the most powerful Mutants to contain him. If any others were to break free, the universe itself would be in jeopardy.
1 Some Surprises Emerged From The Vault
Forge entered the Vault to look for Darwin, who was captured. Instead, he was shocked to discover that Darwin wasn’t there, but Laura Kinney was. Everyone thought Laura had died in the Vault, and she was therefore resurrected on Krakoa (although she was skeptical about her death afterward). Forge rescued this Laura and brought her out. From her perspective, she had been in the Vault for thousands of years.
Darwin, it turns out, somehow integrated himself into the code of the Vault itself and requested Forge leave him there. When Forge emerged from the vault, his psychic back-up was much, much larger than usual, before eventually returning to its normal size. Something came out of the Vault with Forge, but no one knows exactly what.
NEXT: 10 Greatest Marvel Heroes Of 2022
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