UNCANNY X-MEN #366-367, X-MEN #85-87, X-MEN: MAGNETO WAR #1

Professor X is back with the team, but so are Fabian Nicieza and Alan Davis. Yes, Alan Davis. So if nothing else, the art in this story will be fantastic. Davis does do some of the pencils, but he’s just writing some of the issues, with art also by Lee Weeks–so, still good art.

While Xavier was being rescued by the new X-Men team, Joseph–the clone of Magneto who thinks he’s a real Magneto–has been discovering his true identity. Also meanwhile, the real Magneto’s mutant cult followers, The Acolytes, are warring against each other.

Fabian Cortez’s Acolyte faction attack the X-Men but, in the process, Fabian acts like a dick so the Acolytes decide to join with Xavier’s team. This re-establishes Professor X as an inspirational leader who can turn mutants to his side just be being a swell fellow. But not that swell. He agrees not to arrest or harm them, but still won’t harbor the Acolytes.

Why? Because he’d read their minds and learned that they believed Magneto was alive–and had come to the mansion looking for him.

With everyone looking for Magneto, Joseph figures out that he’s a clone created by another mutant, Astra.

She’s a pre-Brotherhood ally of Magneto. He turned on her way back when, and she created Joseph to exact revenge.

Took her long enough!

The real Magneto does in fact return, aligned with the second Acolyte faction. The X-Men find him and fight him.

There’s almost a nuclear war when the world discovers he’s back and they try to blow him up–which is about the sanest thing the United Nations could have done. It’s suggested that the radiation affects and weakens Magneto, which will become an ongoing plotline for the character.

Lots of fighting and speechifying, ending up with Joseph finally dead. Yay!

His death is confusing. He becomes one with the something-or-other. I was never a fan of the character, so I’m just glad he’s gone.

Wolverine tries to kill Magneto, but X puts him to sleep. This will ultimately lead to a break between these two characters over tactically how to handle a threat like Magneto.

It also ends with the United Nations giving Magneto Genosha as a sort of “Israel for mutants,” to avert further conflict.

In all, this turned out to be a satisfying story that made some pretty major changes for the X-teams’ that would continue for several years.

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