With the launch of House of X it was obvious that Marvel Comics was up to something special, but the release of Powers of X #1 leaves absolutely no doubt, with twist after twist that makes X-Men the most exciting story in comics today... and far, far into Marvel's future.
The first issue of House of X made it perfectly clear that Hickman's relaunch is intended as an answer to the previous decade of X-Men comics, more than any recent or current storyline. Effectively starting fresh by throwing readers into a new mutant status quo, it seemed a new dawn was breaking for planet Earth. In much the same ways, Hickman's enigmatic epic leaps into the far-flung future with Powers of X #1--re-framing every plot beat seen thus far. The suspicious feeling that things are not as they seem for the X-Men remains, but follows the first chapter's sprinkling of mystery with an avalanche of new questions readers won't be able to debate fast or furiously enough.
On the surface, Powers of X swaps out the most well-known mutants of Marvel's modern world for those of the future. The metal-skinned Rasputin has fueled speculation ever since she appeared, gigantic sword in hand, upon the first covers for Hickman and R.B. Silva's series. But a mutant adventure has a look and feel any fan can spot (the same goes for the opposing forces and philosophies), and Hickman delivers. The issue continues the precedent set in House of X of catching readers up on the history and key figures via text 'files' inserted where necessary. While one would assume that such exposition will thin out as the story builds up to its own pace, fans will likely appreciate another batch of Marvel Universe lore to decipher once turning the final page.
The artwork by R.B. Silvia rises to some unique challenges in this section of the story, and even more than in the debut issue of House of X it is Silvia's artwork that makes even Hickman's most mind-bending leap seem directly tied to the present day X-Men (the same can be said for Marte Gracia's colors across both House and Powers, as well). The result is a future that may be separated from the Mutants, Sentinels, and world readers know by years, decades, even centuries--but feels as urgent as if it were following directly after the new vision and mission of Charles Xavier. Clearly by design, and paying off already.
Powers of X #1 may not be the story some readers hoped for, in that it won't make the larger story being told by Hickman any clearer, simpler, or predictable. But as the first look at how Hickman's entire team would be telling a single story across two concurrent books, the effect holds nothing but promise. And given the number of twists, reveals, theories, and head-scratching moments leading up to the final page, Marvel fans can likely expect to be talking about THIS book more than any other for the coming weeks and months.
- Powers of X (2019) #1
- Published: July 31, 2019
- Writer: Jonathan Hickman
- Penciler: R.B. Silva
- Colorist: Marta Gracia
- Cover Artist: R.B. Silva
- FEAR THE FUTURE Superstar writer Jonathan Hickman (INFINTY, NEW AVENGERS, FF) continues his revolutionary new direction for the X-Men. Intertwining with HOUSE OF X, POWERS OF X reveals the secret past, present and future of mutantkind, changing the way you look at every X-Men story before and after. You do not want to miss the next seminal moment in the history of the X-Men!
Powers of X #1 is available now from your local comic book shop, and direct from Marvel Comics.