Today we're diving into the X-Men/Avengers crossover: Blood Ties which includes the following issues:
Avengers # 368
X-Men # 26
Avengers West Coast # 101
Uncanny X-Men # 307
Avengers # 369
Avengers # 368
Good old Fabian Cortez is back and at it again. After Magneto's re-appearance, he's shaking in his booty and needs some sort of assurance that Magneto won't wipe him out. Magneto's in no position to do such a thing (since Prof. X wiped out his mind During Fatal Attractions), but he doesn't know that. This brings him to the conclusion that kidnapping his grandaughter Luna (daughter of Quicksilver and Inhuman/Avenger member Crystal) is the best way to protect himself.
Meanwhile, in Genosha, there is a civil war brewing as the human and mutant camps are at each other's throats following Magneto's EMP has left the country (and most of the world) at its knees).
Henry Guyrich, USAgent, Beast, and Professor X (believed to simply be a human that sympathizes with mutants) head on a diplomatic mission to Genosha.
Things get nasty in Genosha as Fabian Cortez shows up, assassinates the human leadership, and puts mutants in charge of the country.
Writer - Fabian Nicieza
Pencils - Andy Kubert
The Avengers (spearheaded by Crystal) are hell bent on getting to Genosha to rescue Luna, however the government wants them to stay in America to avoid an international incident. At the moment, the Avengers are working directly for the U.N. and can't be seen taking a side in the conflict. This results in a battle between Avengers and SHIELD, which allows a few members of the team to sneak away and head to Genosha.
In addition, the X-Men are headed to Genosha as well to both support Professor X but also to help with the chaos there since they have spent so much time in the country.
Professor X and Beast break free from the rest of their entourage and join up with some pro-mutant freedom fighters, allowing the Professor to utilize his powers.
Exodus shows up and kills A LOT of humans, letting us start to see that he may be the real villain of this event.
This issue is basically two giant battle sequences. The first involves the Avengers taking on Exodus and the second shows the X-Men fighting this group called the Unforgiven, who I'm not going to bother to explain because they will never come up again after being defeated here.
Writer - Scott Lobdell
Pencils - John Romita Jr.
Professor X, Beast, and USAgent (who followed the two of them when they tried to escape) stumble across a cavern where hundreds of mutant slaves were being kept by the Genoshan government. Those bastards!
There seems to be more and more hints dropped about Exodus and a mysterious backstory. This is all new to me so I actually have no idea what it's about. There seems to be some hints about him being "woken up," maybe something about him being really old, and Dane Whitman (the Black Knight) seems to recognize him from somewhere. We'll have to keep our eye on this.
The Black Widow announces to the U.N. that the Avengers are backing out and will be an independent organization. If this was an Avengers blog, I would probably comment on how this is a big deal and wonder why it's announced in an X-Men comic!?
QS, Scarlet Witch, Jean Grey, and Crystal all meet up with Cortez and Luna. Cortez is clearly scared to death of Exodus and he knows he's coming for him.
It turns out that Cortez may have been right to be fearful of Exodus as the dude goes pretty psycho and apparently kills him. It seems like a pretty straight forward kill, but these are comics so I'll need to read a bit more to see if he pops up again soon since it wasn't as explicit as it could be.
Also, Exodus sets up this giant psychic barrier around the country and starts slowly shrinking it, making it seem as though he's going to kill everyone. It takes all the efforts of both the Avengers and the X-Men to stop him. This appears to be setting up Exodus as another "Next Level" baddie on the scale of Magneto, Apocalypse, and Mr. Sinister. Maybe Stryfe too, but he appears to be dead at the moment.
My biggest personal connection here had to do with Exodus. As you've probably seen me comment on before, I started to read the Krokoa stuff in 2019 but decided to pause my reading and quickly catch up...you know by reading 50 years of comics while blogging about it...before I started reading again. Exodus was a character who sat on the Krokoan council, basically making him one of the most powerful and important members of the X Universe, and I had no idea who he was. That type of thing made me pay attention to this event and while he seems to be me like the type of villain who ran hot in the 90's and died out just as quick, he must have staying power if he's still relevant in 2019.
Nicieza/Kubert and Lobdell/JRR are continuing to do their thing. Wow, really nothing special to say about creators this at the moment...
Quicksilver continues to be away from X-Factor, hanging out with the X-Men and a central part of the larger narrative. I am very curious to see if he permanently leaves X-Factor or goes back. Considering I never even knew he was a part of it to begin with, I really have no idea. Can't wait to find out.
As mentioned before, this event establishes that Exodus is a big deal and will continue to be a big deal while we learn more about his mysterious past!
Cortez is dead? Is that one Upstart down? Is that plotline winding down?
My Rating and Review
Yea, I'll give it a 7/10. It's good, not great. I enjoyed it. Didn't love it.
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