Wednesday, 10 August 2011

X1C #2: "The Bird, The Beast, And The Lizard"

(Busman's holiday.)


It's vacation time again!  Can the X-Men make it four for four (four fours or fors, for Thor's sake!) for holidays interrupted by a sudden crisis?

Of course they can!  It's nice to see the Lizard peek his head out from the pages of Spider-Man every once in a while, and as Angel says, Connors condition is certainly something our heroes can relate to.

There's a a wonderful comparison between Beast and Iceman in this issue.  Beast uses the severed tail of the Lizard (which is a nice nod to reptilian biology, I think) to create a trail of blood the enraged monster will then follow.  This then leads into an ambush in shallow water, where Iceman can freeze the Lizard to the point where Beast can feed it the antidote, returning Connors to normal.

Once this is done, Iceman points out they could just have stuck the drug inside a roast chicken and dangled it from a tree for the Lizard to eat. "Yes... or that." Hank admits sheepishly.  Sometimes it doesn't pay to over-think things.

Scott and Jean are a lot closer to becoming a couple than they technically should be - there's still months of moping and whining to get through, according to the original stories - but I'm more than happy to pretend none of that ever happened.  There's bound to be deviations from the '60s version of events in this book, and this is definitely a change for the better.

Glad to see the dog didn't get eaten after all, though it's a shame that his harridan of a mistress survived as well.  Having those people who refuse to pick up their dog's turds eaten by a giant lizard is exactly the sort of punishment I'll want to consider once I rule the world. 


This issue takes place over a single day.

The first order of business here is to see whether we can tie this issue to a specific interrupted X-Men holiday.  There are three obvious ones to choose from; those promised in issues UXM #14, #19, and #22.

I think #19 happens too late in the year; whilst Florida in November is presumably still a good deal warmer than New York at that time, there's probably still not much sun-bathing to be done.  If we pick #22, we have to wonder why everyone is having such a wonderful time despite Jean having announced her plan to leave the X-Men. 

Fortunately, issue #14 works perfectly, because we can then place this story as taking place after UXM #18, just as we did with X1C #1.  The implication is that some other mini-adventure has taken place, since the X-Men are on their way back to the mansion, so we'll assume this "missing adventure" took place the day after X1C #1, and therefore place the events of this issue the day after that.

(There is one problem with this approach, which is that the X-Men shouldn't have known about Xavier's jet last issue.  Still, he's using a helicopter now instead.  Maybe something went wrong with the plane and he's wiped their memories.  At any rate, there is no way to place the X1C issues without violating continuity somehow, so as usual we'll take the path of least resistance).


Monday 11th September, 1978.



Contemporary Events

Bulgarian dissident Georgi Markov dies in hospital, having been stabbed four days earlier by a ricin-tipped umbrella.

Standout Line

"If I were X, I'd super-charge my wheelchair so I could blast all over the place!  Some big fat tires - how sweet would that be?  Juggernaut comes running in all "I'm the Juggernaut, I can't be stopped -- WHAMMMM!!! I'm spinning out on his face, doing doughnuts all over his head!  Then he's laying there all "Uhh" and I back up and point at him and go "Get back in that ruby, chump!"" - Iceman.

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