144: X-Force V1 # 52 - 56 (End of the X-Ternals)

What’s Covered?

X-Force V1 # 52 - 56 (January - May '96)


Roster Watch


Synopsis

X-Force # 52: The Blob

Writer - Jeph Loeb

Pencils - Adam Pollina

This is a pretty straight forward romp. The ladies of X-Force (Domino, Siryn, Meltdown) sneak into an abandoned government building and find the Blog, who is working for Onslaught. The Blob shows off new mass shifting abilities and gives them a run for their money. In the end, it was Meltdown (who is much more effective now) who brings him down and threatens to explode a bomb that she shoved down his throat.

Afterwards, Siryn said she wasn't sure if Meltdown would have actually killed or not, prior to Domino calling her off. Regardless, it got the job done.


In the end, Mimic shows up (I know, that's random) and picks up Blob.


X-Force # 53 - 54: End of the X-Ternals)

Writer - Jeph Loeb

Pencils - Adam Pollina

Was anyone calling for more X-Ternals? No? Was anyone calling for...less X-Ternals? Also no? Hmm.


This issue opens up with Sunspot and Caliban finding a dead Gideon, who was apparently sucked dry and thrown off a roof.

Blaming Sunspot and Caliban, Absolam and Krule blame them for Gideon's death. They are immortal beings and pissed off, so...it doesn't go well.

Luckily, reinforcements show up.

In a cute moment, Caliban asks Domino if he's going to die.

Also, I fricken love how how Caliban calls Domino "Patch Eye."


Another X-Ternal bites the dust as Saul is throw to his death, leading everyone to figure out that something is going on above.

It turns out that a fellow X-Ternal, Selene, is sucking her fellow X-Ternals dry and stealing their power and life energy. She goes on to kill both Absolam and Krule.

Selene looks overpowered and all hope looks lost until the Big Kahuna shows up.

Selene actually tries to absorb Cable but can't, claiming he's "tainted."


Meanwhile, Warpath had gone up to see what was going on and when the fight is over, the team finds him missing. We're led to believe that Selene did something to him, but that wasn't it, as we'll soon see.

X-Force # 55: SHIELD

Writer - Jeph Loeb

Pencils - Adam Pollina

This one is actually directly tied into the Onslaught Event, so I'm going to hold off getting too deep into it until a later blog. But in a nutshell, X-Force breaks into a SHIELD facility and rescues Cyclops. But I'll wait until that future blog to contextualize this.


X-Force # 56: Deadpool and Siryn

Writer - Jeph Loeb

Pencils - Adam Pollina

We finally catch up with Warpath and see that he's actually perfect fine. In fact, he's more than fine. He's making out constantly with some new chick named Risque (too on the nose?). Apparently she saved him and now they are hiding out and banging non-stop, and since he's happy (spurning Siryn), he might not want to go back and doesn't care to let them know he's ok (Dick move!)

The main story involves Siryn and Shatterstar going back to the Weisman Institute where Siryn was held previously to rescue Deadpool. You can catch up on what happened earlier in my coverage of X-Force # 47 (136: X-Force # 44 - 48 (Cannonball's Promotion)).

If you recall, a young boy (telepath?) named Jeremy Stevens has actually mind controlled the staff and is running/terrorizing the patients, which now includes Deadpool. Well, it turns out that the Gamesmaster was actually possessing Jeremy and agrees to vacate him by the end of this.


My Connections

I have mixed feelings about this whole X-Ternals story. After I finish a story arc, I scour the internet to see what random people are saying about the comics. Random internet traffic seemed to be pretty down on the X-Ternals, however I felt differently. I've always had a soft spot for Immortal storylines. Maybe due to all the Highlander I watched growing up, I'm not sure. The X-Ternals themselves weren't terribly interesting, but the idea of some mutants "waking up" after their first death to find out they were immortal is a pretty cool concept. And I'm fascinated by Apocalypse (who is supposedly not an X-Ternal now?)


However, one thing I clearly did not like was Selene hand waving away the idea that Cannonball is an X-Ternal. I really don't like how Loeb is just dismissing some plot beats because he doesn't personally care for them. Plus, if you don't care for the X-Ternals, why even create a story where you kill them off? Just ignore them. Also, Gideon was burning hot a while and now he's just...dead? Ok, whatever.


Also, Cable is barely around for the X-Force comic. I appreciate the effort to track continuity and keep him away when he's shown doing other things in his solo comic...but Cable IS X-Force and I don't like how little we are seeing of him.


Creators

I don't like sloppy art. Remember how much I hated Larry Stroman on X-Factor? I know Adam Pollina has a "style" but to me that style is terrible. I mean, just look at this Blob...

That's terrible.


Character Beats

Meltdown


I'm not really buying this whole identity shift. But it's not because I can't stand change or hate females or something. It's because this is supposed to be a new version of her that sassy. Well guess what...she's always been sassy! Her spunkiness is what defines her. She's always been Jubilee light. I do like that now her powers are more functional and she's adding more to the battle field though. Like now she can throw multiple bombs at once. That's pretty cool.


Warpath

A lot of people like Warpath. I always talk about how there is one famous X-Men influencer who adopts Warpath as his call sign. But...he hasn't been terribly interesting yet. In fact, you can argue that he was more interesting as a guest on New Mutants. Regardless, here he is, pulling a complete dick move by running off with this new Risque chick and not letting his friends know he's alive. I'm sure he'll end up brainwashed or something, but not cool bro!


Shatterstar


Something is going on with Shatterstar. At first he was losing his killing instinct and couldn't really explain it, now there is something going on with his identity. The cops told him that his real name is Benjamin. Then later in the arc, the other students at the Weisman Institute seem to recognize him as Benjamin Russel. So maybe he's not from a future Mojoverse and the son of Longshot and Dazzler???


Siryn

So there's an awesome quote here with Domino calling out Siryn as she shows concern for the missing Warpath:

“ You know I can’t help thinking it’s a bit ironic that after all this time, you wait until Warpath is missing to show all this concern about him“

I have a few thoughts. First, oooooh burn! Second, why can't she show concern for a friend? Third, this makes me think that the romantic vibes might come back between Siryn and Warpath, but I thought we just got back to this. Siryn digs guys with uncontrollable cancer.


Caliban

Caliban almost died and then is really in his head about it. We'll see where this goes. Also, Lol @ "Patch Eye."


My Rating - 6/10


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