Tuesday, October 19, 2021


5 Things To Love About X-Men Vol. 2.

December 17, 2020 by  
Filed under Comics, Mainstream Comics (Marvel/DC), News

(AfroGamers.com) Between Judge Dredd and random manga, I’ve been reading the 90s X-Men or X-Men Vol. 2. It’s the first leg of the X-Men Legacy run starting in 1991. It also happened to be the series closest to the popular 90s cartoon.

Let’s look at five things that stand out about X-Men Legacy.

5. Story Pacing

I’m big on the pace of everything: stories, episodes, films, wrestling matches—pace is something that I notice. X-Men Vol. 2 had a brisk pace to both story arcs and just standalone stories. I’ve never been big on standalone stories because from manga it tends to be filler and it just screams episodic.

However, even the standalone stuff is worth reading. Also, very little of the stories felt as if they went on too long. Chris Claremont just delivered when writing the X-Men in the 80s and 90s.

4. Cheesy Comic Book Dialogue

If you’ve read comics from the 70s into the 90s, you’ll run into cheesy dialogue a lot. Some of it is cringey in the sense that the writers might be trying to connect with a younger demographic and the dialogue just reads badly coming from a particular character.

Early 90s X-Men had a lot of cheese in those speech bubbles and that was fine because so did many other comics. It was usually balanced with really cool—but still cheesy—one liners. Such as Wolverine popping his claws and saying “Let’s cut to the chase.”

I love that cheesy dialogue.

x-men-legacy-marvel

2. Storm, Rogue, and Gambit

My favorite X-Man is Wolverine but Storm hovers in the top five. In Vol. 2, three heroes stood out. First, this is Storm’s iconic costume. This was the Storm I first discovered via the animated series. I also love how she manages to be a leader on the team and still be interesting. Sorry, can’t give Cyclops points on that front here.

Gambit was just cool as hell. He’d charge playing cards that exploded on contact. This guy had awesome throwing accuracy, could use a staff, had dialogue that screamed “I’m Cajun!” and he was quite the ladies’ man. The Legacy Gambit has style points to spare.

You can’t mention Gambit without mention Rogue. Her character design stood out in part due to the number two entry in this list. Her dialogue featured a slightly exaggerated Southern accent. You know, like deep country. Her number one offensive word: “sugah.”

That aside, Rogue’s ability to absorb others’ powers was always a cool one to me. It also gave her this sad story where she couldn’t physically express affection because she would fold someone if she touched them or they touched her. This becomes a thing in her burgeoning relationship with Gambit.

Also, she could fly and while it’s such a generic power it’s one of my faves.

2. The Artwork

Since we’re talking about Vol. 2, the artwork I’m referencing is Jim Lee’s. This style was perfect for this decade and it really popped when it was applied to the X-Men. Now later on when readers were more vocal and critical of the pin-up approach to female characters, I can understand that. I believe one of the terms used was “cheesecake” to describe it.

However, in the 90s when everything was exaggerated from bodies to weaponry, Lee was one of those artists on top of it. His work here and with Gen 13 and WildC.A.Ts in the same decade? All of it was great stuff. It fit the approach of the time and looked great if you could get those special covers.

1. This X-Men Team

This is definitely going back to my love of the original animated series but I loved this field team. You had the heavy hitters like Cyclops, Storm, Wolverine, and Jean Grey as well other really likable members like Gambit, Rogue, Beast, and Jubilee.

Going back to the dialogue, things involving Jubilee in battle with the veterans coming in to cover her is always fun to read. When the animated series aired, Jubilee was the perfect proxy for viewers.

She’s a teenager, the viewer base was mainly kids, and the X-Men were mostly all adults. Mind you, she was a little annoying in the cartoon—as kids tend to be in series—but in the X-Men Vol. 2 run, she’s extremely tolerable and fits the group.

It was like reading a mutant version of The Avengers—which the X-Men were—in that you even had other members of the team who joined in on missions but didn’t have a spotlight on them regularly. Psylocke was there and shown about the mansion but she wasn’t in that leading role.

I was stoked when Bishop since he came from a future where Gambit betrayed the X-Men. Of course, there was going to be friction.

Check Out X-Men Legacy

You can find the Legacy series—all runs—on Marvel Unlimited. If you’re like me and try to keep your subscriptions to a minimum, public libraries carry a lot of graphic novels. Hell, I’ve been reading stacks of these I’ve checked out.

It’s a fun read for fans of Marvel Comics’ mutant franchises or if you fancy yourself a bit of a historian and want to check out the writing and style from this period in comics. Stick around AfroGamers because we’ll be diving into this series’ important storylines soon!

Staff Writer; M. Swift

This talented writer is also a podcast host, and comic book fan who loves all things old school. One may also find him on Twitter at; metalswift.


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