All-New X-Men #33 Review

Posted October 31, 2014 by Dennis Burns in Comic Books

Written by: Brian Michael Bendis

Art by: Mahmud Asrar

Publisher: Marvel

All-New X-men 33 continues Marvel’s recent trend of bringing together the 616 universe and the Ultimate universe. Your enjoyment of this issue will completely depend on how much this premise interests you (or doesn’t). Bendis has mined this material before in his 2013 Spider-Men miniseries, and once again Miles Morales is at the forefront of this story.

The issue opens with Iceman facing off against Mole Man and his minions, but what was really cool is that this younger Iceman is actually learning from his older self! Imagine that. For the first time in 33 issues, our young time traveling heroes are learning from the future as well as the past, instead of trying to prevent a particular future. A future which must be completely different now, given all that has happened, but I digress. The ice hulks were, as always, great and Asrar does a fine job of showing motion and scale on the page. Now I want all of the younger mutants to start to change like Iceman is, but I’m not sure that will happen anytime soon.

Screenshot 2014-10-31 11.04.20

Pretty much yes.

Beast is hanging out with Victor van Damme, Angel and X-23 are trying to return to the Weapon X hideout with Wolverine’s son on their tail, and Jean is traveling to Westchester County with Miles, in search of answers. Wolverine’s son does reveal one “ultimate” truth to Angel and X-23: in his world, mutants were made by man, they’re not just the next step in evolution. This is old news for readers who read the Ultimate universe books regularly, but I do appreciate Bendis trying to get other readers up to speed here in a natural way.

The cliffhanger of who is there to greet them at the mansion is a letdown, not only because Jean could just show them what’s in her mind instantaneously, but also because these are characters that we either know from the Ultimate universe, or for regular 616 readers, we’re left thinking, “that’s it?” Ironically, the Ultimate universe was meant to be a great jumping on point for new readers, but currently it’s just as convoluted as the Marvel universe proper, and now we’re crossing them over in order to make things even more confusing. Hickman has been doing some great work as of late in both Avengers and New Avengers concerning the alternate realities of the Marvel world. I, for one, am hoping that maybe sometime soon the universe will all be separate again or at least explained in a way that makes sense for old and new readers alike. All-New X-Men is an okay book, but at $3.99 (like most Marvel books now) it is becoming as tougher pill to swallow each month. At some point these time-displaced mutants will either have to go home or start making a better case for why we need All-New X-Men, Uncanny X-Men, Amazing X-Men, X-Men, Magneto, AXIS, Uncanny Avengers, Wolverine, Storm, Cyclops, Wolverine & the X-Men…that’s a lot of mutant affiliated books! Not that that’s an inherently a bad thing, but right now I don’t think the stories being told justify the price tag or the volume of books being published about characters who carry the X gene.

About the Author

Dennis Burns

I am a teacher, husband, father of a 2 year old boy, and a dog owner. I love coffee, comics, video games, and the occasional tennis match. I currently live in Korea, where my wife and I teach at an international school.