Thursday, February 3, 2011

X-23 #5

Review: We get things started here with Miss Sinister trying to lure X-23(and Gambit)into her lair with promises of revealing secrets about X-23's past. Having dealt with Mr. Sinister in the past, Gambit pretty much begs X-23 not to follow, but X-23 is too intrigued by Miss Sinister's words, and decides to follow her. Against his better judgment, Gambit follows as well. The trio head into the catacombs of the building and discover a bunch of children playing in a waterfall. The children seem to really like Miss Sinister, but X-23 is dubious. Miss Sinister explains that this was one of Mr. Sinister's former hideouts, and that the children must have been there to serve as some sort of experiments. Miss Sinister shows X-23 and Gambit around, and as she said, the children all seem content and happy. After the tour, Miss Sinister finally tells the two heroes why she wanted them there. Apparently Malcolm Colcord thought Miss Sinister was actually Mr. Sinister and began taking some of the children from the hideout in an effort to ferret out X-23. Miss Sinister explains that she doesn't want to work with Colcord, doesn't want the children taken from her, and isn't like Mr. Sinister, which Gambit scoffs at. Miss Sinister also reveals that the Facility that created X-23 had been based off of some of the journals written by Mr. Sinister himself. From there Miss Sinister takes X-23 and Gambit to a room and leaves them alone. Gambit figures everything Miss Sinister told them was lies, while X-23 states that most of Miss Sinister's information seemed to have been truthful, but to a point. X-23 senses that Miss Sinister was hiding something, that she wanted something from the heroes, and that she didn't seem to be physically well. As if on cue, Miss Sinister walks down the hallway and begins to bleed profusely from the nose. Gambit and X-23 decide to split up and explore the lair, to see what else they could glean from the base, as well as to see what Miss Sinister was hiding from them. X-23 bumps into the girl from last issue, Alice, and X-23 realizes that Alice had changed from the last time they met. Alice explains that every time she is cloned, she gets the memories of her “sisters” and that by this point she remembers much more about her “past” lives. She also reveals that she was killed three times, twice by the men from last issue, and once by a man who looked like he could have been Miss Sinister's relative, since he looked like her... Could it be?!?!? Anyway, Gambit runs into some more children, and a few ladies from the nearby town who were tasked with watching over the kids. After some questioning, Gambit doesn't get much from the women other then the fact that the townspeople had all been suffering from headaches. From there, Gambit bumps into X-23 who begins to flirt with him. Gambit doesn't buy this for a second and attacks X-23, who reverts back to her true form of Miss Sinister. Miss Sinister turns off Gambit's powers and knocks him around a bit, pinning him to the floor and threatening to poke out his eyes. Gambit is saved by the timely arrival of X-23, who slashes Miss Sinister in the back, felling the villain. Miss Sinister begins to state that she won't be defeated that easily when she collapses and Mr. Sinister(!!!!!!!!!!)emerges from her downed body, ending this issue.

Thoughts: Okay, there's one VERY important thing that everybody needs to know right off the bat... Mr. Sinister is probably my FAVORITE X-villain. When written correctly Magneto takes that top-spot(you know, when Mags is actually acting EVIL, not like a lapdog), but for all those times when Mags is the Chris Claremont created-wimp, Sinister takes the cake. When Sinister was killed, and then reborn in the body of a woman, I was pretty upset... No, scratch that, I was PISSED! I mean seriously, how does giving one of the X-Men's greatest villains a sex-change benefit ANYTHING? Coincidentally, that was right around the time I dropped Mike Carey's awful X-Men: Legacy series, because that was too much for me to deal with. So now I've established that I am quite the fan of Mr. Sinister... Good, now let's move back to this comic. Marjorie Liu did a great job here of setting the scene and making Miss Sinister into an almost sympathetic character. She seemed like she legitimately cared about the children(Sinister's experiments)and didn't want to see any harm come to them, while also laying seed of doubt that Miss Sinister wasn't also up to some secret nefarious agenda. So this issue, while a bit slow in places, was REALLY good. But then I turned to the last page, and this comic went from REALLY good to borderline great! If Mr. Sinister officially returns, and retakes his proper place as one of the X-Men's most crafty villains, this issue in particular, and this storyline in general will be one I'll remember for years to come... I'm counting on you, Marjorie Liu... Please don't let me down!

Score: 9 out of 10.Please let this be what it looks like...


  1. sups
    good call loving this series
    are there any really good mister sinister storylines that you would recomend

  2. Yeah I hope this is the official return of Mr. Sinister. That could make the series significiant to the entire Marvel U, not just to X-23 fans.

  3. Great Mr. Sinister storylines... Hmm... First thing that comes to mind is the Age of Apocalypse, which just so happens to be my favorite crossover event ever! He basically played second fiddle to Apocalypse, but some of his parts were pretty good. X-Cutioner Song was another crossover that had Sinister, but only in a secondary role. X-Men #23 is a favorite of mine, as Sinister basically messes with Cyclops's head just for the hell of it. The Further Adventures of Cyclops and Phoenix #1-4 have Sinister's origin, which sheds a lot of light on why Sinister acts the way he does. I'm sure I'm leaving a few good books out, but that;s what's coming to mind right now. As you can probably tell, I'm a sucker for early to mid 90's X-comics!

    Totally agreed, Josh. Ideally they should really tie X-23's origin even closer to Sinister, giving her a reoccurring arch-enemy. I know I wouldn't mind seeing Sinister pop up in that series every 12 months or so!

  4. I loved X-Men #23...that "third Summers brother" subplot probably messed with my head as much as it did with Cyclops's! Too bad they ended up screwing it up in the end.

    Have you read the recent Spider-Man/X-Men miniseries, X? Sinister is the main villain, and I thought it was pretty good. It drops in on Spider-Man and the X-Men at different points throughout Marvel history (the Mutant Massacre, the Clone Saga, etc.) and it's interesting how the comic is able to play on the reader's nostalgia for each of those eras in different ways.

  5. Ah! Another fan of X-Men #23! Excellent! Yeah, I loved the whole revelation about the third Summers brother, I remember thinking that was going to lead to something awesome back when I was a kid......... Yeah...

    I haven't even heard of that mini, Marc. That sounds like something I'd be VERY interested in. I'll have to look that up. Thanks for the heads up!