REVIEW: X-Men: Legacy #259 (X-Men Regenesis)

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This week’s X-Men: Legacy #259 rounds out November’s X-Men: Regenesis books. Since we’ll be waiting on Uncanny X-Force and X-Factor to catch up to this latest launch point for Marvel’s Mutants in December and January respectively, it was nice to have one more Regenesis book ship this month after the flurry of titles that were released a few weeks ago.

This will probably read a bit like a eulogy as X-Men: Legacy #259 is the penultimate issue of Mike Carey’s seven year run on the title but I’ll try to stay focused. Spoilers will follow.

X-Men: Legacy is a “team Wolverine title,” but I truly enjoyed the amount of decision-making we’re seeing from the characters here. Carey is balanced in acknowledging the positive points of both sides and as Rogue explains, it really is as if we’re seeing “a good man following his conscience for the very best of reasons, twice.” It looks as though Rogue’s team may stand on the fence a bit like New Mutants, and while they’re headed East to Wolverine’s new school, they may not be unwelcome on Utopia. It’s nice to think that this is an amicable split as Cyclops tries to spin it, but it’s just a matter of time before the two factions collide.

Khoi Pham, Tom Palmer, and Antonio Fabela’s artwork is strong here and there’s a similarity to what we’ve seen from both Clay Mann and Steve Kurth on the title. I appreciate the consistency that provides as the book has alternated art teams over the past year. There’s not a lot of action but the artists use some great panel work to tell the story with this ensemble cast. The book features multiple layouts that drive home the connection among the eight principal characters that have returned from deep space. A particularly well-conceived page comes in the form of an image recapping the major events the X-Men have been through in recent months using overlapping images that are immediately recognizable as moments from Messiah Complex through to Second Coming and all points in between.

While I’ve enjoyed every element of Carey’s run and the characters he’s spotlighted tremendously, his use of the bigger names on the X-Men’s roster has always stood out as special. I liked seeing him have an opportunity to write Cyclops, Emma Frost and the X-Club Science Team again here as he captures their voices nicely. The highlight, however, is the extended panel time we see for Havok in this issue. I was excited to see that Carey was handling his return and after playing a limited role in the previous arc it was great to see him confront Cyclops here. Again, Carey brings balance to the argument and I appreciated Havok making a final effort to get his brother and Wolverine to find common ground. It should be interesting to see if we get more on Havok’s decision to rejoin X-Factor before the end of the next issue.

Carey also employs a great tease in the issue regarding the revelation of the X-Men’s returning “friend” who was “lost in fire.” With Carey leaving the title next issue I really thought it could have been Jean Grey, but I’m glad it was instead Ariel who appeared to perish in a Carey written issue of X-Men: Legacy during Second Coming. This really puts her in the spotlight and I like the slow build. It’s interesting to note that a teleporter is being brought into the mix as many teams are seeing them added to their rosters during Regenesis. I’m wondering if we might see a conflict between this team and Hope’s (with their new resident teleporter Pixie) in a race to find a new mutant. It would be a fun way to make a new character matter and a nice twist on Rogue and Hope’s relationship. Now we just need to get Vanisher back into the mix after the great work Craig Kyle and Chris Yost did with the character on the previous volume of X-Force.

That’s all speculation, and the bottom line is that what’s on the page here is a good story. It gives enough background for new Regenesis readers to get the idea, but it builds on much of what Carey has done during his tenure on the title. It makes it even harder to see him go.

Read more about X-Men: Regenesis on MyLatestDistraction.
and keep up with our reviews as each of the X-titles enter this new era.

Generation Hope #13 / Uncanny X-Force #19 (coming in December)

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