Uncanny X-Men #217-218 (1987)

The return of Juggernaut and a Walt Simonson cover?  Even before page one, I’m excited!

And speaking of page one…

…Psylocke is in a training exercise.

In the aftermath of Mutant Massacre, much of the team is on Muir Island.  There’s no danger room there, so they’re training in a gym and outside by mock-fighting each other. 

And while they do that, they chat.

It’s a good way to let us get to know some of the newer members, like Longshot and Psylocke, and characters like Dazzler and Banshee who we haven’t seen much of lately.  Also due to the Massacre, many Morlocks moved to Muir Island (a tongue twister!), and we get to see them interacting with the X-Men.

It’s kind of like women’s prison movie stuff.  But I dig women’s prison movies.  Second favorite genre, under comic book flicks.

To blow off steam, Dazzler goes to the local town, where she meet Juggernaut. 

He almost literally runs into her.

And in return, she DOES run into him.

Oddly, she picks the fight with him.  He’s actually a fan of her music.  But she crashes her motorcycle into him and then starts throwing light at him—really for no reason.  I guess it makes sense if you remember just a few pages ago Callisto was picking on her.  It’s human nature to attack after we get humiliated, right?

Anyway, he really doesn’t want to fight her but she forces him to and he soundly defeats her.  In fact, he thinks he’s killed her, and then he hides her body in a swamp. 

Of course she’s not really dead. But she is buried alive.

Which is always creepy.

Psylocke locates Dazzler’s mind, the team comes and gets her, and then it’s everyone on Juggernaut.

I love a good Juggernaut fight.  That sequence above is basically a complete lift from Amazing Spider-Man #229.

But it makes sense—it’s one of the few tactics he has in his arsenal, and he’s not exactly well-trained.

He’s just a big, strong blockhead.

Not sure why Rogue does the kiss thing on Juggernaut.  But it works. 

The girls-plus-Longshot win in the end.

Very good set of issues.  Sometimes it seems like Chris Claremont is INCAPABLE of writing a mediocre X-Men comic.  Just an amazing, unbroken run going on here—and it will continue for years to come.

And typical of Claremont, there’s a “seeding” sequence for a future story—many issues away—where Polaris and Havok, on a road trip through Arizona, find an old Starshark in the desert and conclude that the Brood are coming to Earth.


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