Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Subtle Brooding part II: Embry-whoa! 'tcherdoin' there?

When we last left the X-men, professor Charles Xavier had just woken up from a long, self induced coma... seemingly looking none the worse for wear.

"Professor, you're awake! You're all right!"

If only they knew that Xavier had been overcome by the very reason he put himself into a coma: the Brood egg growing inside him.

In fact, the only reason he woke up at all was the fact the alien embryo had gained control of Charles' mind. As would be revealed in later issues, a Brood zygote had superior regenerative abilities. So if Charles' coma had purely been the cause of a physical or mental injury, it would have cleared it right up. Since Xavier went into a voluntary coma, the fact he woke up with the embryo still inside him was definitive proof the Brood was running the show.

Speaking of the Brood being in control, a few days after the professor woke up, the Shi'ar royal cruiser Z'reee Shar appeared in orbit over Earth to take Lilandra home. But before she returned to challenge her sister Deathbird, a banquet was held on board the vessel to thank the X-men for their help.

Charles was still too weak to attend (which also ensured there would be at least one Brood still on Earth). But the other X-men and their houseguest Carol 'formerly Ms. Marvel' Danvers attended...

"We're among friends, so why am I on edge?!
I keep spottin' traces of familiar scents, but I can't place 'em."

Turns out Wolverine had every reason to be suspicious when Lilandra suffered a seizure halfway during her speech...

Sheesh, looks like the princess can't hold her liquour...

"Your courage does you credit, Cyclops... but your cause is lost."

And Deathbird wasn't kidding. A hidden explosive device took out the entire team, leaving them vulnerable to whatever the Brood were planning...

"Satisfied, clan master Ram'n'ehan?"

That Ram'n'ehan was, and then some... He promised the X-men would serve as host-forms for the spawn of their blessed ruler, the 'mother-of-us-all'. The Brood Queen by any other name... And when they came to in Uncanny X-men # 162, they were decidedly being mind controlled, thinking they were on the Shi'ar throneworld.

"Sleazoids! The Brood... we're their prisoners!"

Chalk it up to Logan's healing factor overcoming the effects of the mind control, but he got brief flashes of what was really going on. His fellow X-men and Carol Danvers were mostly oblivious to the actual reality of the situation, and even his partial clarity didn't save him from suffering this fate...

"Look into my eyes, hear my voice... am I truly so terrible to behold?"

And with that, the corruption of the X-men was done...  

1 comment:

Erik J Kreffel said...

Love the Brood Saga. Overshadowed by the Dark Phoenix Saga (what wouldn't be?), Claremont's feel for the characters really leaves Byrne's influence behind, plus his storytelling and plotting start to really gel here. It's a shame Cockrum left before it was done but it's also a shame Smith couldn't have done the entire run himself, too.

Good posts.