House of X, Powers of X, and following X-Men comics (2019-current) [Marvel]

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#1


So, the big X-Men event has arrived. "House of X" and "Powers of X (Ten)" are alternating every week, and they're completely changing the landscape for the X-Men from now for the foreseeable future (which I am grateful for because of how completely frustrating the last Uncanny X-Men run was). Marvel's released a few videos with teases about it:






Suffice to say – it lives up to all of the ridiculous amounts of hype, and I am 100% on board for it.

I felt that it genuinely deserved its own thread, since it's a good place for people to jump in to all of the madness if you ever wanted to dive in to ongoing X-Men comics.



X:neo:
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#3
The fact that Cyclops' interactions in this episode got to demonstrate the entire range of the "nice and friendly" "leader of opposed forces" "planting verbal leverage" which is everything of his best characterizations from classic team leader through mutant revolutionary, so it gives me a lot of confidence that they're gonna do right by him – especially given that this feels very similar to the position that they placed things in with the Phoenix 5 in AvX, where he was attempting to realize Charles' dream to the best of his own abilities, but a much larger number of the other Mutants are seemingly all unified in those efforts vastly moreso in the execution. Rather than just giving humanity free energy and food, that they're positioning the medical improvements and other things and using them as a bargaining chip this time around.

I'm really loving how it's got echoes of things that came before, but there's something new and unsettling about it. Getting to read the script for this issue, even with some sections still redacted was super interesting.



X :neo:
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#6
Are you placing any bets on Xavier looking like the Maker being coincidental, or a part of the thing that's happening? There're lots of notes that make it pretty clear that this is the design for Professor X, and the differentiations between when he's amongst humans and amongst mutants, but the thing that stands out most significantly is that all of the mutant-related technology now is organic, which stands in a stark contrast to the new Cerebero and even all of Xavier's design.

I know that he's been fucking about with things recently, and was heavily involved in things involving Knull, and likely what's leading to Absolute Carnage, so it wouldn't surprise me if he had a hand in this as well.

I did quite enjoy that io9 article, and I'm liking that this is a comic that's very much capturing peoples' attention even if no one's quite sure what to make of it yet (I know that House of X #2 & #5 are supposed to be a pretty big deal, and I'd assume Powers of X #6 since that one's also listed in red in the upcoming list).




X :neo:
 

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
#7
I do think the design invoking thoughts about The Maker is probably deliberate, but I doubt that he will have any involvement here. Hickman has a grand design all his own for the X-Men, while "Absolute Carnage" is the culmination of what Donny Cates has been working on for a while.

And really, thematically speaking, The Maker doesn't belong in this.
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#8
Thanks for the specific insight there as always! This has a good summary of what "House of X" and "Powers of X" are about as individual and combined arcs, and also briefly covers the 6 titles that will be coming with "Dawn of X" as soon as this 12-part story wraps up.


From just the tiny little teases in there, I think that we'll start to get a much better picture of what's all going on here, but the different timescales happening in "Powers of X" are going to be quite interesting. Couple more days until I get to dive in on that one!




X :neo:
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#9
"Powers of X" makes perfect sense as "powers of ten" and I am thoroughly intrigued about how INSANELY VAST the larger timeline is, and how it builds out the structure of things yet to come insofar as large conflicts.

While there's Asteroid K, I'm wondering if any other well-known mutants' progeny are on the Benevolence or Chandilar in that timeline. I do really like how it's setting up some deeply planned betrayals and orchestrations by Mr. Sinister. He's one of the mutants that I think makes for an exceptionally good long-term threat, especially on how you're now instantly nervous about who to trust in all of this with all of the leadership infiltration teases.



X :neo:
 

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
#10
This shit is weird. I haven't decided yet whether I dig it, but I know I don't actively dislike it -- which is more than I've been able to say about the writing on X-Men in a good while.

I can also say that if I don't end up liking it, that's probably not going to come down to the strength of the writing. This is intriguing enough. Also something I've not been able to say about the writing on X-Men for too long.
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#11
I think that just feeling like meaningful and interesting things are happening in the writing of an X-Men comic. Like, feeling just genuinely intrigued by what's going on is really neat rather than having a looming sense of, "oh fucking gods, what's happening now?" is a big relief that I'm not sure I've really felt about the comics since... maybe pre-IvX since that's when it seemed that the X-Men shifted solidly into the "we're not sure what we're doing with them, and definitely not in any way related to the Fox licensing thing" territory.

I think that I'm just excited because it feels like they're no longer afraid to let the X-Men matter again, and really just go all-in on something for them rather than what feels to just paying lip-service or trying to play some sort of games with expectations while pushing other agendas. I think that's why all of the weird creepy mysterious stuff, it all still feels like it's just going to end up in giving us better X-Men comics again no matter what.




X :neo:
 

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
#12
Interesting comments/observations I've seen from some forum users at CBR:

- ExodusCloak pointed out that one of the opening pages to "House of X" #1 prominently features a quote from Xavier with the "data talk" at the bottom saying "Xavier_alpha"; the end of "House of X" #1 has a similar page with a quote from Magneto and data talk at the bottom saying "Magneto_omega"; one of the opening pages for "Powers of X" #1 has a quote from Moira with data talk at the bottom saying "M_X_theta"

- As we already knew, and as a data page in "House of X" #1 reiterates, Magneto is an Omega-level mutant; perhaps then Xavier is to be considered an Alpha-level mutant and Moira a Theta-level mutant -- whatever that might mean

- cranger observed that an archaic design for Theta is an "X" within a circle (like the X-Men's symbol), and Theta was the Greek letter used to represent death
----

Follow-up observations I would add to all of that:

- Xavier's helmet looks like an "X" within a circle

- Theta's opposite was Tau, an "X" sans the circle; Xavier has just been calling himself "X" lately

- Theta was derived from the Phoenician letter "Teth" (the "X" within the circle), which apparently means "wheel"; in Hickman's "New Avengers," the Black Swan spoke of a "Great Wheel" that "breaks hope ... crushes what makes us decent and steals what little honor remains"; she had also formerly been a worshipper of "Rabum Alal" ("Great Destroyer" in Akkadian), or "Uggae" as she also called him (the ancient Mesopotamian god of death)

- Just before Moira speaks to Xavier in "Powers of X" #1, he's watching birds flying in a circle (a wheel?) above him
----

Does all this point to death? Life? Rebirth?

FUBAR007 also made some interesting comments:

"Marvel will probably deny it, most of the posters here will definitely deny it, but I think this is for all intents and purposes a reboot. Albeit a soft, stealth one. A few continuity references aside (e.g. the Genoshan genocide in HoX #1), this is not a continuation of the X-Men saga as we've known it (and there's no fucking way all of X-history as portrayed credibly compresses into a single decade). Rather, this is a total reinvention of the franchise as high-concept sci-fi, a novel set in the Marvel Universe. One poster mentioned parallels to Asimov's Foundation series; similarly, I see elements of Dune and some of Heinlein's stories."
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#13
Man oh man, it's like they know how much of a sucker I am for WELL DOCUMENTED DIVERGENT TIMELINESSSSSSSS, because I am just hopelessly hooked on this now, and I am 100% here all for whatever sort of madness is being wrought with it all, because you can FEEL the careful planning and execution even when it's not being documented directly at you in all its spectacular glory.



X :neo:
 

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
#14
Hickman is a madman. In probably (hopefully) the best possible way.

I have to reiterate what I said after HoX #1 as well: if I end up not liking this in the end, that won't come down to the strength of the writing.

Truth be told, I'm still unsure what I feel about it right now. I like a lot that's going on while I'm not fond of some other things, but I'm intrigued all the same.

That's when you know you're dealing with a good writer. :monster:

Some observations I have to share upon doing a second read that I can't help but think will be relevant later:

- In her first life, Moira apparently almost died from an illness when she was 13. The narration notes that "the doctor's prognosis was not hopeful," yet the next day, "almost miraculously ... she was fine. Better than ever."

It's later explained to us that if Moira dies before her powers emerge, she doesn't reincarnate. So, did she come close to dying before her powers would have developed in that life? Did an illness kickstart her powers? Was the "unnaturally high" fever a side-effect of her powers emerging? Did she unknowingly die and "spend" a reincarnation there?
----

- Moira began her second life with no knowledge or understanding of what she might be or how she could be living her life over -- despite living to the age of 76. Did mutants not become public knowledge until her second life? Did they never emerge at all in the timeline belonging to her first life?

Could Moira have somehow unknowingly and indirectly caused mutantkind's emergence or public reveal in her second life by way of the observer effect, whereby she notes "that simply by existing and watching, I was already changing everything"?
----

- Details of Moira's sixth life are conspicuously absent from both the narrative and the graph at the end of the issue
----

- Proteus's birth is only mentioned along the timeline of Moira's tenth life. Did she deliberately set out to give birth to an Omega-level mutant? One who is a reality warper? Did that plan go awry? Or possibly worse, did it go as intended?
----

- The shape of the skull of the blue mutant seen in the future at the end of "Powers of X" #1 is much like the implied/false shape Destiny's helmet gives her skull
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#15
• One: There's a blacked-out area on Krakoa likely related to the tumorous invisible area that they referred to in House of X #1.
• Two: Xavier with the O5 X-Men was supposed to mimic the Monolith and the Apes scene from 2001 according to the director's notes.
• Three: Powers of X #1 actually had a more complete version of the redacted quote that I think that Xavier delivered:
– _"There was a dream, our dreams are the same. While you slept, the world changed."_

Now some time for some bigger tl;dr –


Moira's Sixth Life also has some interesting design stuff going on with it that seems to tie in to House of X #1, and also connects to the larger timeline:

– The first time we see the non-solid timeline continuation marks (>>>>) is actually in this issue:

Two years ago >>>> Observation begins
• One year ago: Population alert
• Six months ago: Financial alert
• Two months ago: Territorial alert
Observation ends >>>> ORCHIS PROTOCOLS ENABLED

On the "Orchis Protocols Enabled" we have this orange to dark red colour shift from light to dark (left to right), and on the Damage Control page, all of the items are listed in black, but one of the security items has this same colour scheme shifting from dark to light (left to right) as
"Sol's Hammer > >"

What's interesting about this is that the timeline in House of X #2 uses that colour range for the timeline moving from earlier to later with light to dark, and I got bored (insomnia) and grabbed the hex values of the 9 listed timelines, as well as the aforementioned range.
  1. #FFC28C
  2. #F7AA42
  3. #F77531
  4. #E65131
  5. #DE929

  6. #991A19
  7. #7B1010
  8. #52180A
  9. #000408

Now, if you look at the colour range of the Orchis Protocols & Sol's Hammer, they're #F77037 – #841417

Not only is that the colour range that matches the range of the missing "Moira Six" timeline, but it's also ever-so-slightly wider than the range of JUST that timeline, and it covers Timelines 4, 5, & 7 as well.

Timeline 4: Moira Dies in a Sentinel Attack
Timeline 5: Moira fall into a coma from a Sentinel Attack.
MISSING
Timeline 7: Moira kills off the entire Trask family and discovers Master Mold

Master Mold and the Sentinels are all on Sol's Hammer and are a key component of the Orchis Protocol.

Whatever we're looking at in the story in Powers of X with the Tri-Sentinel, Nimrod, as well as the three Tarot Cards listed is more than likely related directly to Timeline 6.


That brings me to the quote from Apocalypse, Destiny, and one of the small notes in the pages.

Moira's first lifetime she lives a "human" life, and the page notes for her earliest divergences list them as [Moira_L_TwoA] & [Moira_L_TwoB], whereas every other annotation of her is listed as [Moira_X_01] or something similar.

The quote from Destiny makes her appear to be a different Mutant until she gets into the warning and there's a VERY subtle slip of her language (which doesn't happen accidentally in a comic like this. Emphasis mine).

"I am much older than you are. My powers will have manifested full of the knowledge of what we have done."
"If you--once again--try to do this evil work against out people, like today, I will see the potential outcome of it and find you. AGAIN."
"And if you try to kill me before I kill you... I will see my end coming and prevent it."

And the quote from Apocalypse:
"If you can find it in you to survive -- if you are worthy -- then I will make you into something more than them. Something eternal."

Given that the Apocalypse War is literally without end and lists no death for her... Moira can't have transitioned into Timeline Ten. I'm suspecting that she becomes Destiny in order to do SOMETHING in Timeline 6 that ensures that the Orchis Protocols come about the way that they do, and that she (paradoxically) guides her own future by "breaking all the rules" which is what the series has openly stated that it's all about.

Additionally, in "Powers of X" we see two individuals appearing in the preserve in the X³ timeline.
• The Magician (See the magician, the metal metamorph, the great sword and the girl with one foot in two worlds)
• The Tower (See the tower, the axis, the pillar of collapse and rebirth, the monolith of ascension...)
• The Devil (See the devil, the red god and the lost cardinal of the last religion)

Cylobel is in the tower, and I'm suspecting that the two beings who suddenly appear in the preserve below it are Rasputin and Cardinal, and Rasputin having "one foot in two worlds" is how she's going to connect to Moira and the manipulations that're happening here to overcome the obstacle with the Cylobel's capture, and Cardinal religion of peace is ultimately the solution to that, since the Tarot draw itself is indicative of this as well: and now we know about Moira's timeline-related knowledge to be able to achieve it – and we know she'll have ELEVEN lives if she plays her cards right.


Whatever's happening, I'm so very into it, and I'm genuinely re-reading the issues every time a new one comes out, and I love that they make more sense with each chapter, and there's no way that this would work without the two different comics, alternating weekly format, and I'm so glad that they're letting it happen like this.



X :neo:
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#16
So the format of the comic now makes it seem like it's being presented as the parsed information that they recovered since the bracketed versioning information looks like the data interface that they're seeing.

Additionally, the mutant language character set is also clearly related to the types of machine civilizations (Machine, Hive, Intelligence, Technarch, Worldmind, Phalanx) in a way that's likely meant to integrate the Mutants as THE natural part of the Ascension process – potentially in a way that's directly transcendent of the technological vector, and is meant to transform it into a biological one (to match the aesthetic that they've been VERY centrally focused on for the Mutants), but also in a way that differentiates the ultimate purpose of the Homo Superior vs. Homo Sapiens conflict at its very core.

Lastly – seeing Xavier and Magneto turning to Cyclops for the insurmountably impossible task of going up against Orchis and Master Mold and him tackling it like the true "No. Not Plan B. Plan 2." leader of the X-Men was just the god damn best: "...Does it need doing? Then it will be done." I cannot wait to see what's happening next.




X :neo:
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#17
The new Powers of X ended just as I expected – and that's not at all a bad thing. It's also interesting to see the lineage lines to the Horsemen and who the Chimera are composed of. Really interested to see how the events in the X³ timeline get addressed, since that's where the Tower was shown, and where ascension is being addressed. I do wonder if Xorn & Rasputin are who we saw appearing in that timeline as a result of the singularity unmasking.

With the way that Nimrod's emergence is being focused on, and I'm wondering if along with Master Mold in the Orchis facility, that this means that we're looking at the emergence of Bastion in some form since in Timeline 9 the machines very much won out over humanity if we'll see something more integrated happening earlier on (I can't imagine that all of the techno-organic virus church stuff is gonna be left behind even if that timeline has passed). Bastion seems like a pretty good foil to the Krakoa/Cypher mutant Symbiote serving as Thanos' Famine Horseman and the overall "natural vs artificial" thing that they've set up for the "mutants vs. humans" visual storytelling so far.



X :neo:
 
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