𝕎𝕙𝕚𝕔𝕙 ℂ𝕠𝕞𝕚𝕔𝕤 𝔸𝕣𝕖 𝕋𝕙𝕖 𝔹𝕖𝕤𝕥 𝔹𝕠𝕠𝕜𝕤 𝕐𝕠𝕦 ℂ𝕒𝕟 𝔹𝕦𝕪?:
ɴᴇᴡ ꜱᴜᴘᴇʀʜᴇʀᴏ ᴄᴏᴍɪᴄ ʙᴏᴏᴋ & ɢʀᴀᴘʜɪᴄ ɴᴏᴠᴇʟ ʀᴀᴛɪɴɢꜱ & ʀᴇᴠɪᴇᴡꜱ
[ 𝙼𝚊𝚛𝚟𝚎𝚕 / 𝙳𝙲 𝙲𝚘𝚖𝚒𝚌𝚜 / 𝙸𝚖𝚊𝚐𝚎 / 𝙸𝚗𝚍𝚒𝚎 ]
10-23-19 Marauders #1
Bear with me I’m about to go in quite a tangent… For something that is an ongoing series, it is best if the series is based around a mission statement. For a mini-series, it is best if it is based around a finite goal. When you put a finite goal on an ongoing series you automatically write yourself into a corner. At some point, the finite goal has to be accomplished. One option is to drag out the goal endlessly which the readers will notice because it drags out the writing. They will instinctively know that the pacing is wrong, and that progress isn’t being made in the story. The other option is to suddenly switch to a different goal when the original goal is completed. This is probably the superior option, but it is difficult to do this without making the series feel contrived.
Here’s a weird example of this. There have been about a million different versions of “Scooby-Doo”. For like 99% of them the mission statement is very simple: kids and a talking dog in a van go around solving mysteries. Sometimes with celebrity guests! One time a “Scooby-Doo” series was different.. This series was “The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo”. I remember little about it except “Scrappy-Doo” was in it and he always sucked. There was also some “Dr. Strange” type of guy. When I saw reruns of this, I was a little kid and I couldn’t quite put my finger on it but something felt off about it. That “offness” was that this ongoing series had a finite goal.
“X-Men On A Boat”, I’m sorry I mean “Marauders” (which is a much, much worse title but we’ll get into that later) is the “13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo” of X-Men.
Actually, it is the second one. The first was “Xtreme X-Men”. In that series, the finite goal was originally finding the diaries of “Destiny”. Again this was a series that was just kind of off.
Old cartoon aside, let’s get to the story. This story begins with “Storm”, “Nightcrawler” and “Kitty Pryde” with some young mutants as they’re about to use one of their magic teleporting flower things to take them to “Krakoa”. We soon realize that for some reason that “Kitty Pryde” cannot use it and injures her face pretty bad trying to enter. This seems unbelievably contrived, but I will give the writer the benefit of the doubt. I will assume there’s some well-thought-out reason why “Kitty Pryde” or why some mutants can’t use the portals. I’m just going to give them the fact that this makes sense and isn’t just stupid contrived nonsense used to pointlessly setup this series. Then “Kitty Pryde” steals a boat from a guy. Fuckin’, why?! This is a woman that has very close relationships with two teleporters. “Nightcrawler” and “Magik”. She could also just call “Charles Xavier” who is now exceedingly rich from selling his special cure-all drugs to humans. I will assume that there’re no planes that go to “Krakoa” but the “X-Men” have jets. Ya know the “Blackbird”? The big fuckin’ plane that they use for all their missions. Nobody can just fly and scoop her up and take her to “Krakoa”? Or she couldn’t at least pay somebody to take her by boat to “Krakoa”? She just has to be a straight-up criminal?! In this new status quo, every “X-Man” is just the fucking terrorist criminal dickhead?!
Anyway, she steals a fucking boat, and she finally gets to “Krakoa”. She also brings some supplies for the “X-Men” while she’s doing this. There’s a not-so-funny joke about the stuff “Wolverine” wants and it’s kind of dumb but whatever. Also, they use the shitty information pages in this book to attempt to be funny. It is not funny.
“Kitty” is then telepathically contacted by “Emma Frost”. “Emma,” says something about telling people to stop calling her “Kitty”. Ya know the affectionate name all her closest friends have always called since she was a child and she never had any problem with? Well, “Emma” (someone Kitty has never liked and was probably nightmare fuel for her for years since one of “Kitty’s” earliest missions was fighting the “Hellfire Club”) tells her to give it up and go by “Kate”. I’m once again going to give the writer a huge benefit of the doubt and assume this is leading towards “Kitty” becoming more like the “Days Of Future Past” version of herself where she was referred to as “Kate”. Anyway “Emma” offers “Kitty” the opportunity to be the captain of a boat to smuggle in the stupid “Krakoan” drugs and smuggle out the mutants from nations that don’t recognize the mutant terrorist ethnostate as a nation.
Elsewhere, “Iceman” uses one of the teleporting plants to go to Russia to see if any mutants there want to come to “Krakoa”. Anyone with half a brain cell would know Russia would never be about letting go of their citizens, but apparently “Iceman” is a moron. He’s met by Russian soldiers and a guy in a mech suit that cancels out mutant powers. He barely escapes with his life while running back through the portal to “Krakoa”. “Kitty” decides to mess with the sovereignty of Russia over its citizens and decides to take her boat there. She ropes in “Iceman” and “Storm” to come along. I got a question. If the “X-men” feel that strongly about mutants in other countries not being allowed to come to “Krakoa” shouldn’t they officially declare war on them? Even if we ignore that rather than waste time on a boat trip, why don’t they send a team without “Kitty” through the portal?
We’re then taken to a scene in Taiwan where a woman is making a speech blaming the disappearance of her husband on mutants. After the speech, “Bishop” approaches her and tells her there’s no record of her husband using one of their magical teleporting plants to go to “Krakoa”. The lady’s response is basically “fuck off, mutie”. “Bishop” then reports back to “Xavier” that “something fishy is going on”. This is actually kind of interesting. A short mini-series or a series of backup comics about “Bishop” investigating this could be half decent. Unfortunately, we have to go back to this comic.
We then cut to “Kitty” and the others on the boat. The original “Pyro” just happened to be brought back to life and just happened to be there. So that’s a thing. The team gets to Russia and they fight the guy in the mech suit that negates mutant powers which for some reason doesn’t work on “Kitty” and she phases through it and destroys it. “Kitty” is then is one-woman wrecking machine on the Russian soldiers and takes them down in an overly violent fashion. She probably could simply phase around while the others got to the mutants that want to leave Russia but instead she punches a guy in the throat, shoots a guy in the kneecap, and gets really over-the-top by phasing a gun into two of the soldiers’ legs. Then when more soldiers are coming “Lockheed” shoots some fire and “Pyro” blasts all of them. A guy says “retreat” so I guess we can assume he didn’t murder them all. We’re then told these mutants were going to put in the gulag after the fact to justify this.
One of the mutants is recording all this on her phone and “Kitty” names the team “The Marauders”. Which would be like an American team of soldiers calling themselves “Al Queda” as the original “The Marauders” massacred the “Morlocks” and maimed one of the founding “X-men”, “Angel”. She then states the finite goal of the book which is bringing mutants in places that won’t let mutants leave back to “Krakoa”. Then everyone sails back with “Kitty”.
“Storm” being a sane person who actually lead the “Morlocks” questions the “Marauders” name and “Kitty” is like “I was on the spot”. She wasn’t though. No one prompted her to give this group a name. Also, again an American soldier on the spot would not name their unit “Al Queda” because they’re on some chicks Instagram story. “Kitty” then says she doesn’t want to live on “Krakoa” and asks “Storm” to stay with her and “Storm” agrees. “Kitty” then telepathically agree to “Emma’s” earlier proposition… Has “Emma” been mentally “on hold” this entire time?! She then demands people call her “Kate” because “Emma,” told her she should do that. Then she’s an info page with “Mr. Sinister” stuff alluding to future things that will happen that are so vague the whole thing is rendered pointless.
To sum up, we have an ongoing series with a stupid flimsy premise wrapped around a finite goal. The art is good, but that’s just kind of a sad waste. Can we get back to real “X-men” soon? C-.
Recommendation: One Of The Lesser Books You Can Buy