Writer Greg Pak has taken the Exiles concept and the X-Treme X-Men title and made them both his own, with What If? worlds being visited by alternate versions of the most iconic mutants around.
In X-Treme X-Men #7.1, an excellent jumping-on point for new readers, Pak also brings back those lovable chomping aliens, the Sleazoids … er uh, the Brood! But these are the demon insectoids of another reality. What will that entail for Dazzler and her crew of alternate x-tras?
Cosmic Book News: For the uninitiated among the readership (and you know who you are), please explain the concept behind this incarnation of X-Treme X-Men.
Greg Pak: The Dazzler from "our" Marvel Universe leads a team of alternate-universe X-Men on a reality-hopping mission to kill ten evil Xaviers who threaten the multiverse itself!
The team includes Howlett, a mutton-chopped Wolverine whose bones are laced with adamantine, the metal of the gods; Kurt Waggoner, a teleporting kid from the tech utopia known as the United States of California; and a severed Xavier head in a bottle. So far they've fought a Cthulu-esque squid Xavier, a What-If-The-X-Men-Were-Gods Xavier, and an Old West Xavier.
Greg Pak: It's never too early to give potential new readers a very clear and easy way to jump onto a book.
Greg Pak: Yes! And yes!
An X-Man from "our" universe joins the team in issue #6. And a non-mutant of great importance to Howlett shows up in issue #8. Big things afoot -- don't miss out!
Greg Pak: These Brood are very much like the classic Brood we've grown to know and fear. But there's a shocking twist to the Acanti skywhales from their reality. André Araújo is drawing this issue, and he's absolutely killing it. He's bringing this amazing Otomo vibe to the Marvel Universe, and I can't be more thrilled.
This story is also a fantastic place for new readers to jump on board because it co-stars Cyclops -- "our" Cyclops -- and touches on his struggles post-AvX.
Greg Pak: Well, we're seeing Cyclops in #7.1. And by issue #11, much more about how things will have an impact on "our" universe will become clearer. Look for big payoffs in #12 and #13.
Greg Pak: I've had a blast with each and every one of these variant characters -- they're all a blast. But probably Howlett is my favorite right now. He's the former Governor General of the Dominion of Canada in his world -- kind of a gentleman adventurer, like Teddy Roosevelt with mutant powers. But he also has a great backstory and a huge heart -- and he's in love with Hercules.
Greg Pak: I contributed a crazy kid-meets-giant-robot story to the Shattered Asian American comics anthology that just hit stores this week. Tak Miyazawa, who co-created Amadeus Cho with me, is the artist, and he did an amazing job. You can grab the book now on Amazon -- check it out! http://www.amazon.com/Shattered-American-Comics-Anthology-Identities/dp/1595588248
I also just released an iPad app version of my sci-fi graphic novel Vision Machine. It's a huge, awesome, and
X-Treme X-Men #7.1 hits shelves in December!