Saturday, 1 October 2011

UXM #102: "Who Will Stop The Juggernaut?"

(Storm in a teacup (would be fucking useless))


Why is it that comic writers are so often wretchedly terrible at flashbacks?  The idea of a superhero suffering crippling claustrophobia is all very well, and Claremont's been implying it prettily heavily for a little while, so it isn't as though it comes entirely out of left field.  But my God, the explanatory flashback is shitty.  It's suggested that we're watching these scenes through recollections, but why would those recollections include a summary of the reasons behind and progress of the Sinai War?  How would she know that the incoming plane was a French Vautour fighter bomber, and why would she care?  Why would anyone care that the escaping pilot was repatriated after the war?

This whole thing could have been done in half the space and with at least twice the impact if everything but the dialogue and sound effects were dumped.  As it is, it's just unbearably bathetic, especially when it's mixed with Claremont's usual melodrama ("'Get down!  I'll keep you safe!' LIAR!").  Tacking the rest of Storm's origin story on the end ("Here's what happened after the trauma that's currently left you helpless and screaming whilst your teammates get slaughtered!") is the crowning turd in the water-pipe, as General Melchett would say.

Also in today's issue: Misty Night is Jean's room-mate.  I did not see that coming.  Seems pretty unlikely doesn't it?  I mean because they're both superheroes, not because I'm racist.

Though maybe they moved in together because they're both superheroes.  Misty clearly knows about Jean's trip into outer space, and I'd imagine that'd be pretty tricky to explain away if she was still pretending to be a bikini model. 

Actually, scratch that.  This is the Marvel universe.  Of course there are bikini models in space.

Was the Juggernaut really in prison?  How did that even work?  Come to think of it, last time we saw him, he'd become afflicted by rapid aging and shrivelled away to nothing.  How did he manage to recover from that?  Whatever it did, it apparently gave him the ability to reflect lightening bolts, which must be useful.  Well, a bit.

Beyond those points (and the brief arrival of some elves/leprechauns which I'm desperately trying to ignore) this issue is essentially one protracted fight.  Claremont's action scenes aren't too bad (though a little dialogue heavy), but there's still very little that can really be said about them, other than that I love this panel:,

Nightcrawler's ability to blend into shadows hadn't even been established before this - I love the idea the team - and the audience - find out entirely by accident.


This issue occurs in approximately real time.

Storm is stated as being six months old in the summer of 1951, which based on the publication date of this issue would make her somewhere around her twenty-sixth birthday.  Let's assume that was Claremont's intent, even though the last year's worth of comics have taken up less than a fortnight of Marvel time.

That means we can retire, at least for now, the Iceman Age Estimation Variable, and replace it with Storm Haggardness Index!  For the sake of ease, we'll assume Storm was born on New Year's day.  If she's twenty-six now, she was twenty-two years and ninety-two days.

(Interestingly, this issue tells us Ororo's parents were killed during the Suez Crisis.  I can't remember what is used instead these days - I assume we're not meant to think Storm was kicking around-fifty five years ago.)


Wednesday 6th January, 1982.



Compression Constant

1 Marvel year = 3.60 standard years.

(Storm is 35 years old)

"I'm sorry... so... sorry..."
Contemporary Events

Eddie Redmayne is born.  He goes on to star in Pillars of the Earth, win a Tony Award for the play Red, and have Hayley Atwell's norks pressed against him.

Standout Line

"You ungrateful, unspeakable -- cur!" Cyclops refuses to leave Jean to save the X-Men, and Xavier is... displeased.

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