Posted by: Byron Brewer

Review: All-New X-Factor #2

Peter David
Carmine Di Giandomenico
Lee Loughridge
VC's Cory Petit
Kris Anka, Jared Fletcher
Marvel Comics
Release Date: 
January 22, 2014


Bless his heart. This is why writer Peter David is so beloved among his scores of fans. Even though All-New X-Factor #2 does indeed continue our three merry mutants – Polaris, Quicksilver and Gambit – in the new direction of doing good for the public sponsored by a private corporation instead of the federal government or as private investigators, a thread from the last incarnation of the book is tucked almost too quietly inside this week’s mag.

The missing members of the terrorist agency X-Cell – Fatale, Abyss and Reaper – are the lab rats de jour in this first arc AIM plot. (Boy, those boys are busy this month, in PAD’s X-Factor and two Jonathan Hickman Avengers books!) One of the super-scientists thinks he has discovered the secret of making humans mutants, and it all has something to do with the energy he siphoned off the X-Cell trio. But whether this energy was of mutant, Terrigen or other-dimensional origin is as yet unknown, as was how our AIM villain knew about the whereabouts of Fatale, Abyss and Reaper.

A little free background that will not be found in any other review, I will wager, courtesy of CBN’s Brew’s Crew writers: Quicksilver once used the Inhumans’ Terrigen Crystals on his body to repower Fatale, Abyss, Elijah Cross, Reaper and Rictor to fight Jamie Madrox’s X-Factor. He offered to repower Marrow, but Callisto convinced her it was not a good idea. As an army of Madrox duplicates launched an assault on Quicksilver's headquarters, the repowered members fought back until something strange occurred: Elijah Cross suddenly exploded.

As the other members began feeling a heat build-up, Abyss snagged Reaper and Fatale and thrusted them into his Brimstone dimension and followed them.

Meanwhile, Callisto and Marrow learned of Quicksilver's role in the depowering of the world's mutants, holding off his future counterparts while Layla revealed the information. After an unseen counterpart (ah, perhaps our own AIM scientist?) managed to stab Marrow from behind, Callisto fled with her to the sewers.

Rictor managed to destroy the Terrigen Crystals on Quicksilver. The final fate of the surviving X-Cell members was unknown … until this week!

The irony here is that Quicksilver is part of the current X-Factor team and the point is not lost in this adventure, even if it could have used a bit more foreshadowing, IMHO.

Carmine Di Giandomenico continues to do absolutely gorgeous art, and I hear he may even stay awhile, a real bugaboo with the last X-Factor run. I also love Lee Loughridge’s simple, light color palette that does not go dark like most mutant books. It really becomes this all-new Polaris-led team, and I hope it becomes as consistent as anything can be in comics these days.

I am really enthusiastic about this book, and I hope it can pick up those valued “new readers” even as the property’s core fans find the old love in PAD’s new efforts.

God knows the man has been through enough over the last two years, so he deserves our loyalty and attention.  

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