There are those moments in X-Men history where I felt that chill up my spine.
The ending of God Loves, Man Kills where Magneto left the X-Men with a chilling reminder that should Charles Xavier’s dream of peaceful co-existence between humans and mutant fail then it would be his turn.
The destruction of Genosha where Professor X despairs as the mutant population was swiftly eradicated by a monstrous sentinel. The death toll that takes place in a few panels is chilling. “16,521,063… 11,001,467… 8,290,025… 800,000… 763…”
“All those lights going out,” cried out a helpless Xavier.
And there’s the death of Jean Grey where she holds Cyclops by the hands as they go out swinging against the Imperial Guard.
X-Men history has been pockmarked with countless tragic moments but these three (and a few others) have stood out and have grafted themselves indelibly in my mind.
Now with X-Men: Schism #4, those last few panels where Cyclops and Wolverine have a go at each other releasing years of pent up frustration with a murderous sentinel fast approaching. They held back somewhat but there was pain dripping in those panels. When Scott Summers throws in a dagger, "She never loved you." Man, you know that goes all the way back no matter had happened since. Incidentally, that was a veiled reference to the love triangle with Jean Grey.
I gave up comic books after a typhoon destroyed my home and almost my entire collection of books, dvds, compact discs, toys, and comic books. I have had them for decades. Many dating back to my schools days.
I only recently began to pick up books although most of them are the hardbound collections. Perhaps the single biggest casualty of that misfortune was my X-Men collection. I have every single book all the way from the Stan Lee and Jack Kirby days. Those early years were all hand-me-downs from an uncle of mine and they were one of the simple pleasures of my childhood (I began collecting with Giant Size X-Men #1).
I tried picking up a few X-Men books in between but felt so discouraged at what I missed (I stopped for more than three years). You needed a scorecard to know who was where and why this happened. Unfortunately, there was no such thing perhaps save for wikipedia.
When I saw the ads for X-Men: Schism #4, I was intrigued. I picked up the series with the third issue and hunted down the previous ones. The story represents an interesting shift with Cyclops and Wolverine taking the philosophical differences of Xavier and Magneto to another level. I won’t mention what caused the rift in the event someone out there has not read the story but I am siding with Slim in this.
Having read the X-Men for much of its glorious print history, I know that down the line, the two split teams will reunite. That much is certain. But for now, it would be interesting to see where all the X-books go. I hope that all follow the central story and take off from there.