Just when you get Cyclops back, the punches already begin rolling for the big guy. It was a tough pill to swallow seeing that this creative team was already so willing to put him in the kind of situation where he could actually lose an eye and find himself facing complications in using his powers. And that was but one insane development in one issue that also involved confrontations with both Captain America and Hope Summers.It was anyone’s guess what this month would lead to.
Off the bat I enjoyed the transformation this team took on so soon after what has already been set into motion. With so many of us prepared for Cyclops to rise to the occasion again and lead the X-Men into a role of significance again in the world, you couldn’t have prepared for nay other outcome. All it took was one conversation and things quickly changed, I have to say I couldn’t argue with it either in spite of being #TeamCyke. Growth means doing something different and changing your perspective of things. There was no better way of showing this than to shake things up with the status quo of this team. This was also the best way to show that everyone on this team mattered. Up to this point that was also up in the air. Everyone who wasn’t Cyclops or Wolverine seemed expendable which could have been problematic.
This definitely changed the way that they engage in battle as well. One simple shake up added to the perspective in the way that they each stand out. You weren’t seeing anyone playing background, or one person’s actions more crucial than the others. As much as I love Cyclops, it is easy at times to see when everyone is simply pieces to be moved when he is the one taking charge. I was impressed with the floor given to a couple of X-Men to show why they were capable leaders when they had their teams.
What was interesting this time around was the enemy they faced. The MLF was an expected problem to solve at some point, but this new problem for them was one you didn’t think would exist in this world. Just from the cover you would have assumed that the problem was Psylocke, and then it became something else entirely. A familiar face, but taking on a different title to continue a fight that long-since ended. And that was only the start to things you didn’t see coming because the end of this issue hits us with one of the biggest twists of this book so far. One would have assumed this was something to happen in one of these current battles, but the last thing you could have prepared yourself for was something unfortunate happening off-panel.
Once more the interior artwork was wonderful, and for the most part the same consistency in quality as the issues before. I couldn’t find anything wrong with the art either, so it was only really those small things which stood out that you could actually take notice of. Such things as the action sequence you knew we were going to get in this issue. That was exciting for us getting another issue where drawing a bunch of mutants clashing did not mean losing out in quality or detail. Nor did it stop the colors from being any less explosive with things going boom in every direction. As I’ve pointed out before, it tends to be the effects used for their powers where I think their creativity shines best. The auras and symbols used to give their powers form continue to be unique.
Uncanny X-Men #16 was the perfect reminder of what these mutants are fighting for, and a reminder of how dangerous this world can be for even them. Mutant problems have been a consistent theme so far, and I would like this think that this creative team is nailing the message sent.