Battle of the Atom Review: Uncanny X-Men #13 by Brian Bendis and Chris Bachalo

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Uncanny X-Men #13

Written by Brian Michael Bendis

Art by Chris Bachalo, Tim Townsend, Al Vey, Mark Irwin, Jaime Mendoza, Victor Olazaba, and Marte Gracia


The short of it:

The Uncanny X-Men and the Real Future X-Men stare down the Jean Grey School, recently overtaken by the Fake Future X-Men, and Future Jubilee wants to go shove her Wolverine claws down someones throat, but Scott wants to come up with a plan first. They try to explain why he needs to listen, but it doesn’t matter, Psylocke wasn’t Psylocke, Young Bobby and Hank are gone, and they are under attack. They can handle this though, they’re the X-Men! Magik and Mustache Colossus take their giant Soul Swords and head in for a fight, being met by Deadpool and Molly who provide a challenge for all of…two pages? Yana does what Yana has to do. Meanwhile, Future Xavier’s Grandson attacks the others with Krakoa, because why not have a giant monster for a campus if not for it to try and eat people?

Inside Hank and Xean are trying to dump the originals back in time, with Raze (the Wolverine/Mystique offspring) bringing the stragglers. Future Hank wants to get it over with, Xean wonders if they ever had a chance, and Yana tries to stop them. Jean Grey, though, so yeah, she doesn’t. Mind control and telekinesis? She tries to make Yana kill herself, apparently what happens eventually anyway, but the others are freed from Krakoa when Future Colossus does what must be done to free them and the innocent monster. Inside the Time Cube isn’t working, as the Young X-Men aren’t going anywhere, so they test it out on Raze instead…yeah, he travels no problem. Unfortunately, that means there is a huge problem, but before the Fake Future X-Men can deal with it….well, hello there pissed off Uncanny Cyclops!


What I liked:

  • Illyana and Colossus team up! Filled with blood, death, and giant awesome swords!

  • I like the transition from ‘we can’t break the future’ to ‘this is what you do in the future’. Because it does a great job of establishing that Yana remains a very uncontrollable fountain of anger that will forever cause more harm than good up until the day when she finally ends it. I REALLY want to see what she does knowing that her future is ‘be a monster and then kill herself’, because that could be the spark to make her into a better person.

  • Bachalo’s art…mmmmmm…..yeah, I like this. I like the Krakoa, I like Molly’s tooth getting knocked out, he still draws the best version of Scott’s new costume, and it’s just everything. The inkers did a fantastic job of providing consistency, despite their numbers, as they all have the same tone. Sometimes you can tell exactly where a new inker takes over, that isn’t the case here. And then Gracia, I often forget to mention things like this, but the colors are spectacular. You can read every use of TK by the purple color scheme, all the glowing whites and blues from the time cube, and even the illumination of the Soul Swords. The art team is a league all of their own.

  • Raze is a cooler name than I was expecting for the Wolverine/Mystique offspring.

  • What’s the point of having a Krakoa if it never eats anybody? Exactly.


What I didn’t like:

  • Great, the X-Men have once again completely destroyed the timeline. It’s not a ‘heroes of Earth’ thing, like Guardians of the Galaxy would have you believe. It’s just the damn X-Men.

  • Man, if I had Scott’s roster of Uncanny X-Men, and the knowledge of what I had to go and do, I would have totally brought Eva along to screw everyone up.

  • So, if the Fake Future X-Men just want a world where their younger selves actually go home, because they didn’t, then why are they the bad guys? I mean, yes, the whole awful people and hurting others bits, but come on, they’ve got a point!


Final thoughts:

So that’s who the Sorcerer Supreme is! Wiccan! Now I feel like a schmuck for not coming up with that on my own!

What I first thought to be Betsy’s Crimson Dawn tattoo has become a very clear scar on Jubilee’s face that has left her without her left eye. It takes a Chris Bachalo to give us that very clear detail. Isn’t Chris awesome? Hell, isn’t one eyed, pale skinned, energy clawed Jubilee awesome?

How the hell does Jubilee get energy claws?

Is Xavier’s grandson Legion’s kid? I pity the poor woman who got pulled into that hell.

IceHulk just pulls himself back together, good to know. Still confused about the whole ‘two Bobby’s’ thing, but hey, maybe IceHulk is Modern Iceman turned bad.

So, if the X-Men have broken time AGAIN, and now the original five are stuck in the present because of paradoxes, and that one time when Legion killed Xavier time ripples gave us the Age of Apocalypse, where the hell is our alternate reality to compensate for the fact that the original five X-Men never did anything in their history? How about Xavier’s compensating with new recruits? This is literally the way you start any alternate timeline story ever, so go ahead and give it to us. I mean, for the love of crap, if Jean never goes back to the past, then she’s never replaced by Phoenix, who never kills that solar system, which means that the upcoming Guardians crossover is them punishing her for events that literally can never happen now.

Damnit, Marvel, now I need to chase this great read with some advil.

Overall: 8.5/10

A lifelong reader and self proclaimed continuity guru, Grey is the Editor in Chief of Comics Nexus. Known for his love of Booster Gold, Spider-Girl (the real one), Stephanie Brown, and The Boys. Don't miss The Gold Standard.