The next age of the X-Men has begun with help from a new Excalibur team, showing how Marvel's mutants will be using magic to give them an edge. And while the team and its magical heroes may be impressive... their new costumes are adapting Avengers: Endgame's biggest disappointment.
It might seem like a trivial detail in a story that has transformed Rogue into a magical host for some strange invader, and quite possibly changed all of Mutant history with a throwaway slur. But if this new Excalibur #1 is supposed to develop the future reality of the X-Men and mutants in the Marvel Universe, then the costumes being worn by the heroes is, frankly, important. And the fact that they've adopted what is easily the worst decision made in the MCU with Avengers: Endgame is cause for concern.
The matter at hand isn't about Jean Grey's return to a green dress, or whether Cyclops' new X-Men costume is better or worse. The question is about the very purpose of a superhero costume, especially as it pertains to characters and teams. Originally an explicit uniform, later body armor or specialized equipment, it's part of what makes comic book superheroes a thrill to read (and in the case of the X-Men, costumes are half the fun). That's certainly the case with Captain Britain and the Braddocks in Excalibur #1, when Betsy interrupts her brother as he's suiting up in his Union Jack-emblazoned supersuit. And reveals her Krakoan shortcut instead:
Yes, the X-Men comics have taken their cue from the long-awaited Quantum suits of Avengers: Endgame. Months of marketing established the white and red suits as the first 'team uniforms' of the MCU Avengers, described by Kevin Feige as "a big differentiating factor between [Endgame] and the other films." Of course, the finished film revealed they weren't actually uniforms at all. Them being entirely CG and visible for a matter of seconds was a letdown, but the greater disappointment was the true culmination of Iron Man's armor 'evolution' -- once a thrilling 'suiting up' sequence, simplified down to the press of a button. Because... who cares about a 'superhero costume' anymore?
The MCU called it Stark's brand of nanotech. In the new X-Men books, it's the similar-but-infinitely-less-believable "Krakoan costume technology." For those who suspect Krakoa itself has a secret, evil plan, could this decision to remove one of the best aspects of superhero comics be part of this same deception? Are the readers, too, intended to be victims of the mutant island? Perhaps, But only time will tell if this Krakoan cheat will be spread across the rest of Marvel's X-books. Until we know for certain, we suppose this issue will be worth studying for historical purposes. Find the full solicitations details and plot synopsis below.
- EXCALIBUR #1
- Written by: Tini Howard
- Art by: Marcus To
- Cover Art by: Mahmud A. Asrar
- A NEW DAWN IS FORGED! The Otherworld is rocked by war! It is a new era for mutantkind as a new Captain Britain holds the amulet, fighting for the Kingdom of Avalon with her Excalibur at her side - Rogue, Gambit, Rictor, Jubilee...and Apocalypse.
Excalibur #1 is available now at your local comic book shop, or direct from Marvel Comics.