Tag Archives: not a mutant

94,95,96 – DANGER ROOM: Gambit, Wolverine, Shatterstar

26 Aug

Subject: Gambit

We get another Gambit card where he’s only using martial arts, not his card-charging powers. Granted this is a much cooler pose than his original card’s, but it’s not until this card’s side-B do we see him handling cards at all (the side-B portrait is pretty badass, I admit; there’s something about how Lee draws side-views that’s alluring to me).

Interestingly, this card’s bio also downplays his kinetic energy powers and focuses on his athletic abilities. I guess since this is a card featuring the Danger Room such acrobatics would be showcased, but even with metallic boots, if I were Gambit I’d totally use my cards on that big robot instead of kicking it (but I guess he’s just that bad ass).

Subject: Wolverine

Lee handles this mid-air slashing pose of Wolvie‘s pretty well, it’s a pose he’s done before, and he probably does it better than anybody. Wolvie also gets the maskless treatment here, which again Lee does very well. Again, too bad the original art for this card probably wasn’t too much bigger than how it’s printed here; you can see how he just clearly can’t fit details where he would normally, and the drawing feels sketchy.

Logan’s side-b portrait is that cool side view again, but his eyes just look a a little TOO far away from the center of his face… Wolverine looks like a fish here.

The X-Tra fact on this card refers to the the customizability of the Danger Room to be tailored to the trainee’s abilities; Gambit’s card refers to the room’s holographic capabilities. Aren’t both of these facts already essentially established (indirectly) by the other cards that came before them? I’m concerned for the quality of trivia for the remaining four cards in this subset.

Subject: Shatterstar

Shatterstar is unique in this panorama for being the only non-mutant of the bunch, which is good because otherwise this blade-swinger gets to pose next to the X-Men’s most iconic slasher; he just doesn’t look as badass (and definitely looks fruity). But wait, what’s that? Is Shatterstar shooting energy beams from his sword’s handguard??? Was such an ability ever mentioned before???

90 – ROMA

22 Aug

Subject: Roma
Real Name: Roma
Height: variable Weight: variable
First Appearance: Uncanny X-Men #225, January 1988

Power Ratings:

  • Energy Projection: 7/7
  • Mental Powers: 7/7
  • Strength: 7/7
  • Fighting Ability: 7/7
  • Intelligence: 7/7

Sorry again for having this card published before I actually finished writing it; 90 cards into the series, you’d think I’d know better.

And finally, we get to the one single character in the series with all 7’s in their Power Ratings, whom many had assumed would be Dark Phoenix (from whose Intelligence and Fighting Ability ratings they docked points).

Having been created by Chris Claremont in the UK version of Captain Britain (Roma’s first appearance, listed here as Uncanny X-Men #225, refers to her first appearance in the United States), she was designated the guardian of the Omniverse*, and commander of the Captain Britain corps. As mentioned before, while the concept of multiple universes was not unique at the time (any expanded fictional universe with incidentally-crossing continuity is basically wrestling with this concept), Claremont somehow managed to organize the Marvel version, creating the now famous concept of (arbitrarily) numbering the various universes. I have no clue whether Claremont had any idea the impact of his own seemingly arbitrary decision.

Anyway, within the X-Continuity Roma was also responsible for nudging the X-Men through the Siege Perilous, a portal of sorts through which the X-Men saved their lives but also separated them through various parts of the globe (as part of the palate cleanser that eventually led to the relaunching of the X-Men books). She was also responsible for the formation of Excalibur.

Not bad for a character I don’t recall much at all. Also another character I don’t think Lee ever actually drew himself, and while the plain green background seems uninspired, the posing is pretty good, and she’s got that wavy ponytail thing that Lee loves to draw (see Gideon, Omega Red, and Shatterstar).

*There seems to be conflict over the use of Omniverse versus the more ubiquitous Multiverse, with a flame war nearly erupting in the Comic Vine forums over the issue. The contention is definitely arguable, especially when considering the hierarchies of the various omnipotent Marvel characters (Living Tribunal, Eternity, Galactus, etc). In general I’d think that the two terms were used interchangeably, with multiverse being the more accepted term now, but with Roma’s position as Omniversal Majestrix one would think she was the leader above all within Marvel.


19 Aug

Subject: Weird Happenings Organization (W.H.O.)
Roster: Dr. Alistaire Stuart, Brigadier Alison Stuart
First Appearance: Excalibur #9, June 1989

We’re near the end here, I feel bad stiffing you on entries,
but once again I can’t fake knowing more than very cursory things about the Weird Happenings Organization. They’re allies of Excalibur, one’s apparently a guy, one’s a girl, um…



So once again, let’s just transcribe the bio text:

Bewitched by the black arts? Annoyed by aliens? Disturbed by dimensional gateways? Whenever something unusual appears in the United Kingdom, it is the duty of W.H.O. to investigate. W.H.O. is a joint scientific and military research team headed by Dr. Alistaire Stuart and his twin sister Brigadier Alison Stuart. Together, they track down the most mystifying incidents ever to bedevil the British Isles!

X-Tra Fact: Oddly enough, W.H.O. spends most of its time investigating the British super hero group Excalibur!

So next time we can move past this Excalibur stuff, right? Oh wait, no? Dammit.