Chris’ Comic Book Corner: Uncanny X-Men Annual #1

A Review From Chris Franey

So the big moment we have all be waiting for, the Return of Cyclops, or as I like to call it the return of the King. Where was Cyclops before Extermination?  Right here: 

That is a tough image to see when you’re looking at one of your favorite characters. So let me point out my bias right away, I like Cyclops and he was right. I’ve been a fan of Cyclops since I first saw him in the 90’s animated series on Fox, I related to him since I wore glass as well, but we both shared the heavy burden of responsibility and caring too much.  So this issue pulled no punches but it was great to finally get to this point.  
This issue was written by Ed Brisson, who wrote the series Extermination which sent the original X-men back to their time; art duties were handled by Carlos Gomez.  Right away I would like to shout out major praise to Carlos for his work on this issue.  He can draw some bold figures, but I also liked how he did make the images look like different eras, since there was mention of other times (referencing a “lost tale” from the Marvel Age, Cyke’s funeral from Death of X, and his appearance in Phoenix Resurrection).  Now Carlos didn’t do this alone so great job on colors by GURU-eFX and the rest of the art team.  
This issue felt like a part six for Extermination, which is totally fine by me as this is a continuing part of the Cyclops’ saga to Make it Right!  I really enjoyed how Ed used history to make this issue connect to the ongoing saga of the X-men, even going back to the AvX era in order to get the Phoenix cage.  I felt that Kid Cable was the voice of Cyclops’ fans, which fit perfectly on how we felt about Cyke’s end days:

I like how this issue shows a lost tale of Cyclops saving a college from a mad professor and then being thanked from one of the students, Paul, who reported the professor, that sets up the motivations for later in this issue.  We then flash forward to Paul as a family man and Kid Cable in his kitchen.  Young Nate demands a Phoenix cage be made to capture some energy and help revive Cyke.  Paul builds the machine and they implant it into Cyclops after his funeral in Death of X.  During the Phoenix Resurrection mini series Scott is also brought back for a short bit and this helps to get some Phoenix energy to bring him back to the land of the living.  
I like the interactions that we get between young Nate and Scott; it is nice to see this father son relationship brought back to the forefront.  It is interesting to see more of Kid Cable as he seems to be quite the manipulator (retiring an older version of himself and sending the O5 back) now this time he puts Scott into a situation save Paul (who Kid Cable put in danger) or save the X-men (from the events of their story Disassembled).  Scott saves Paul and this shows that Scott is the hero he always was…or maybe not?

This is a hard moment for some Cyclops fans, but I like it.  I feel Cyclops has real growth in this moment.  He understands the difference between Professor X and Magneto’s methods and he has been a student of both (in a sense).  We like the idea of Cyclops being right, and he was, but I like that he is looking at his methods.  Sure most of the guilt comes from Marvel Editorial of the past and using the rally cry of “Cyclops is Hitler” which in the end wasn’t really shown or proven in Death of X and Inhumans vs X-men.   
Scott’s actions weren’t that deadly but he did play with (Phoenix) fire and now his image was burned, he was imprisoned without a trial but did break out, he did show more of a militant action to protecting the mutants, yet it worked.  The mutants went from less than 200 to being a living species again, so Scott was right and did his job.  I like that he feels that he was wrong since that is classic Scott; he feels things on a deeper level, the man does mourn milk when it is spilled.  This character is coming back and I have questions, does he need the device to continue living?  How will he help save the mutants from the Age of X-man?  How will they react to Scott being alive?  I’m very excited to have my character back and I look forward to seeing what he does next in order to Set It Right.  I like this issue and don’t have any bad things to say, because I know it is part of a larger story and will wait to see what happens, so I give it five out of five ruby quartz sunglasses.  As always read on and Excelsior!

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