X-Men Legends #1 Review

by Ryan.L on February 17, 2021

Writer: Fabian Nicieza
Penciler: Brett Booth
Inker: Adelso Corona
Colorist: Guru-eFX
Publisher: Marvel Comics

This book takes us all the way back to 1991 expanding on a story that Fabian Nicieza started in 'X-Men' (1991-2001) #39. It's not often that you get to go back and continue a story, nevertheless thirty years later.

I'm not sure who's idea this was but it is an interesting one. I found I had to go back and re-read 'X-Men' #39 so I could remember what exactly had been going on. For those that don't know this was a story that was a lead up to the 'Legion Quest' story arc, which then led into the 'Age of Apocalypse'. In issue #39 Adam-X rescues Cyclops and Havok grandfather from a plane crash. At the end of that issue we see that someone with a red arm is watching a monitor displaying the hospital room where Jean Grey is updating Cyclops on what happened. Watching that monitor of the person watching Jean and Cyclops is an arm dressed in blue/black. This figure looks to most likely be Mister Sinister.

In 'X-Men Legends' we see Erik the Red and his Crystal Claws invading Providence Hospital in Anchorage Alaska where Philip Summers has been resting after his plane crash. It looks as though the red clad arm watching Jean and Cyclops on the monitor in 'X-Men' #39 was Erik the Red. A note is left written in Shi-ar basically saying to save Phil and Deborah Summers and the galaxy they must deliver the forsaken one. At that same time a group of Crystal Claws attack Cyclops and Havok in Westchester near the mansion. Later we see Cyclops and Havok go up against Adam-X and the first revelation of the series is revealed.

This was a fun trip down nostalgia lane. It felt like a book that was released back in 1991.The art and the flow of the issue really paid homage to the style of early '90s comics. After going back and reading issue #39 this book really does pick up right after that one. I wonder if this was Fabian Nicieza's plan all along in the original story or if he came up with it when Marvel opened the door to revisit his story? No matter what this is going to have a lot of impact as they advertised. I'm still unsure if I'm fully on board or not. Either way it fully succeeded at what it set out to do. Be a continuation of a '90s story, and deliver it in a classic '90s way.



So I can't really discuss this issue without giving spoilers. Though if you were like me and saw the advertisements for this and the tag "the Summers family will be changed forever" etc, then you knew that we were getting a new Summers brother, particularly Adam-X as it is heavily teased that he is the new brother. So when reading the issue and it is revealed it was not much of a shock. Instead it had me asking questions on why? Where has he been then? Why hasn't he had a larger role in the Summers family? Why doesn't he have a room in the Summers Moon complex?

Jonathan Hickman has shown that he really loves the Summers family. So it's not that shocking that we would get yet another Summers family member. Though Gabriel hasn't had much of a role on Krakoa so it seems odd that now we are going to get more Adam-X... or will we? There are two unoccupied rooms on the Moon complex. Number 15 which is in the "brothers" trio of rooms and number 17 which is in the "children's" trio of rooms as per the chart in 'House of X'. So the main question is then where has Adam-X been? We did get to see him a little bit in the new 'X-Factor' series, but before that, where has he been? Has he been to Krakoa yet or has he been in Mojoverse all this time and that's why he doesn't have a room on the Moon? I guess we also need to wait and find out what happens at the end of this story before we can really start speculating how he is going to fit into things going forward. I do have a hunch that now he might be one of the members of Hickman's X-Men from the election. Why do this big retcon if you don't plan on using him in a major way?

Overall this was an exciting nostalgia trip. An explosive action packed issue with a big reveal at the end. This book got me to ask a lot of questions, but also has me intrigued for more of the story. If you love classic '90s X-Men then you should check this one out. 

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