My Latest Pull List – January 6th, 2016

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Uncanny X-Men #1 2016 Lashley variantSpotlight on Uncanny X-Men #1: As disappointed as I am with All-New All-Different Marvel generally, and the newest crop of X-titles specifically, there’s no way I’d pass up the debut of another volume of Uncanny X-Men.

The hook for this latest relaunch is that the team is populated primarily by villains and antagonists like Sabretooth, Mystique, and their leader Magneto. While I’m unclear on what’s motivating these characters to stand together as heroes, there’s potential given writer Cullen Bunn’s success with his recent Magneto solo series. Bunn has a reputation for doing good things with the bad guys and he has a lot of badness to work with here.

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Marvel’s Uncanny X-Men #600 – A Standard Deviations Special Edition

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Uncanny_X-Men_600_AMarvel’s Uncanny X-Men #600 arrives in comic shops today and its release is enough to bring me out of self-imposed exile. In addition to bearing a landmark issue number, the book is also the long awaited finalé to Brian Bendis’ three year run on both Uncanny X-Men and All-New X-Men, and sports no less than twelve different covers. That merits an evaluation here on MLD as both a Marvel Milestone issue and as part of our ongoing Standard Deviations series looking at variant covers.

Read on for a discussion of the covers, the numbers, and more.

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Standard Deviations vol. 7
House of M

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As Marvel’s Avengers versus X-Men event looms on the horizon and Avengers: The Children’s Crusade wrapped up this week, this edition of Standard Deviations takes a look back at the set of variant cover images from 2005’s House of M. The Scarlet Witch’s “no more mutants” spell has been a defining moment for the Marvel Universe and set both of these recent series in motion. While the significance of House of M‘s story is clear, the series was also one of the first high profile examples of the return of variant coves since their hey day in the 1990s speculator market.

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Standard Deviations vol. 1:
X-Men: Regenesis variant covers

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I am an unabashed fan and reader of Marvel Comics’ X-Men, but I am also a collector. As a consequence, I’ll go out of my way to track down variant covers of issues from most titles in the X-franchise. A quick disclaimer before we go on, I know the interior pages are identical, I know the book will not command the price I’ll pay for it going forward, and I know I can get a high resolution digital version of the cover image on my computer that will be far more accessible long term. I seek this stuff out because I want it in my collection. It’s OK if you want to consider it a disorder, disease or other malady; synonyms are really just variant covers for words.

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Marvel cancels Uncanny X-Men

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I had already planned to write about the X-Men today with the movie premiering last weekend and lots of other X related stuff always on my mind, but Marvel’s announcement that they’re canceling Uncanny X-Men at issue #544 in October took things in an “all new, all different” direction.

I haven’t said much about it here, but a big summer X-Men event called Schism is starting next month under Marvel’s MMXI – Year of the Mutants banner. The premise is that Cyclops and Wolverine will finally reach an irreconcilable point of disagreement and the X-Men will be divided as never before. The creative team of writer Jason Aaron and artists Carlos Pacheco, Frank Cho, Daniel Anuña, Alan Davis and Adam Kubert sounds phenomenal, but as a mini series announced in the midst of three other major events affecting the X-Men line (Fear Itself, X-Men: First to Last and Age of X) I wasn’t sure what to make of it. I certainly didn’t expect it to lead to the “cancellation” of the flagship Uncanny X-Men.

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