X-Men to reassemble in Marvel Comics based on a democratic election

It may be a brand-new year in the real life, however on the mutant country of Krakoa, whatever’s brand-new all the time. What’s the most recent news? The X-Men — the group —is returning, after being officially dissolved as unneeded (and perhaps even politically hazardous) when Krakoa was formed.

However there’s a twist!

All the members of Krakoa’s very first main X-Men group will be democratically chosen by all mutants! So that’ll be an intriguing toy for the X-Men authors to mess around with.

What else is taking place in the pages of our preferred comics? We’ll inform you. Invite to a Giant-Size edition of Monday Funnies, Polygon’s usually-weekly list of the books that our comics editor delighted in. She was off just recently for the vacations therefore you’re getting 3 weeks in one! It’s part society pages of superhero lives, part reading suggestions, part “look at this cool art.” There might be some spoilers. There might not suffice context. However there will be excellent comics. (And if you missed the last edition, read this.)

X-Men #16

Jean Grey declines a reinvitation to Krakoa’s Quiet Council in favor of restarting the X-Men, saying “The people of our nation need to feel like someone is acting on their behalf [...] and that’s us.” in X-Men #16, Marvel Comics (2020).

Image: Jonathan Hickman, Phil Noto/Marvel Comics

With the delays in Marvel’s slate due to COVID-19 restrictions, it seems like this plotline was originally timed to coincide with election season in the US, which would’ve been a bold move. I’m kind of glad it’s not happening concurrently.

Brazillian goddess Caipora chats with staff at the check-in desk in the underworld, as Yara Flor/Wonder Woman looks on. The “staff” are sort of adorable black fanged imps with big glowing white eyes, in Future State: Wonder Woman #1, DC Comics (2021).

Image: Joëlle Jones/DC Comics

We’ve got a whole review of Future State: Wonder Woman #1 — it’s a excellent first issue and a fantastic character intro — but I want to shoutout these incredible underworld imps that look like Stitch and a Heartless had a baby.

The Eternal Sprite exults on top of a cab in a packed and sunny Times Square NYC. “Oh wow! Look at what they’ve done! This is just wonderful!” in Eternals #1, Marvel Comics (2021).

Image: Kieron Gillen, Esad Ribić/Marvel Comics

Everybody expected Eternals to be good based on its creative team alone, so it’s no surprise that it’s a beautifully made comic and a lot of fun to read. Also, that one Eternal, you know, the most famous one, makes a predictable guest appearance.

Jonathan Crane/Scarecrow asks an incarcerated Harley Quinn if she will help him track down Gotham’s other villains, in Future State: Harley Quinn #1, DC Comics (2021).

Image: Stephanie Phillips, Simone DiMeo/DC Comics

There’s one reason I like Future State: Harley Quinn — although Simone DiMeo’s art really helps — and it’s that I’ve been waiting for somebody to do a proper story where Harley is in the Hannibal Lector consulting psychopath role. Here it is.

Batman captures two masked members of Bane’s gang on a Gotham City rooftop. Steam rises from the buildings around him, with a pale blue moon looming in the background. Buildings glow pink and yellow and blue green all around, in Future State: The Next Batman #1, DC Comics (2021).

Image: John Ridley, Nick Derington/DC Comics

Look at artist Nick Derington and colorist Tamra Bonvillain’s Gotham City! INCREDIBLE.

The Picture of Everything Else #1

A man explodes in a shower of blood, as if he is being ripped in half, in The Picture of Everything Else #1, Vault Comics (2020).

Image: Dan Watters, Kishore Mohan/Vault Comics

With The Picture of Everything Else, Dan Watters and Kishore Mohan seem to be interrogating The Picture of Dorian Grey with more horror, a queer protagonist, and a killer who can tear people apart by tearing paintings of them apart. The very first concern is a strong start.

Thor #11

Thor runs into Ratatoskr, the squirrel god of mischief, with their black fur, orange ruff and tail, red and yellow staring eyes, and a spiraling unicorn horn, in Thor #11, Marvel Comics (2020).

Image: Donny Cates, Nic Klein/Marvel Comics

I genuinely gasped when Ratatoskr, the squirrel god of mischief who runs up and down the World Tree, showed up in Donny Cates’ Thor. You just don’t expect a character first introduced in for The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl to show up in many other places in the Marvel Universe, especially in Nic Klein’s art style, however I suppose that’s underestimating Cates on my part.

Power Pack #2

The Power Pack siblings travel to Asgard to see if Thor, or Frog Thor will mentor them. Sif has set up a sign regarding Frog Thor which reads “NO, we do NOT know where FROG THOR is. And verily, ‘tis insulting when thee suggest a Midgardian frog makes a perfectly viable substitute for our LITERAL KING forsooth.” The kids are disappointed, in Power Pack #2, Marvel Comics (2020).

Image: Ryan North, Nico Leon/Marvel Comics

Speaking of Squirrel Girl, Power Pack, from Squirrel Girl writer Ryan North, is still really, really great. I especially like how this sign asking people not to ask about Frog Thor has a lionized relief of Frog Thor on top of it.

Dark Nights: Death Metal The Secret Origin #1

“Get out of here you stupid mutt,” Superboy Prime begs Krypto the Superdog as he stands loyally by him, in Dark Nights: Death Metal The Secret Origin #1, DC Comics (2020).

Image: Scott Snyder, Geoff Johns, Paul Pelletier, Norm Rapmond/DC Comics

Look. If you don’t understand who Superboy-Prime is, you don’t need to understand. But if you do know who this polarizing figure of mid-’00s comics is, then let me tell you that Dark Nights: Death Metal The Secret Origin made me feel an emotion about him and I’m mad.

Guardians of the Galaxy #10

“I’m the master of the sun,” says Star-Lord, “And you know what they say. Sun’s out, gun’s out,” as he shoots a god in the head in Guardians of the Galaxy #10, Marvel Comics (2020).

Image: Al Ewing, Juann Cabal/Marvel Comics

OK, so, right now in Guardians of the Galaxy, Peter Quill is going through a serious level up sequence, coming into some of his creator’s original ideas for him, which included him becoming a guardian of suns, fueled by suns (hence the name Star-Lord). Right now he’s got a gun powered by all the stored divine energy of the Greek Pantheon?

What I’m trying to say is, this is a damn good one-liner.

Batman Annual #5

Leslie Tompkins stitches up Clownhunter in her clinic, saying that she’s heard all about how he’s going around killing people who “ravaged the city” during Joker War. “i guess i’m famous,” he responds. “The Joker is famous, too.” she replies, shutting him up, in Batman Annual #5, DC Comics (2020).

Image: James Tynion IV, James Stokoe/DC Comics

Add it to the list of shitty teen characters who are growing on me: Clownhunter. James Tynion IV is very, very good at writing selfish and violent teenagers, and the influences that can lead a kid to make very bad choices, and the scared child that still might exist under all that bluster. Batman Annual #5 feels more like his teen-focused indie work than any of his Batman stuff so far, and this slower storytelling truly assists to make Clownhunter and Punchline more than new names and new costumes who’ll probably disappear after his tenure.

The Dreaming: Waking Hours #6

Puck explains that he cut Heather’s arm with a vorpal dagger, a wound that will bleed until she dies, over a series of panels made from the background, her shirt, and skirt in The Dreaming: Waking Hours #6, DC Comics (2021).

Image: G. Willow Wilson, Javier Rodriguez/DC Comics

Take a look at Javier Rodriguez’s art! The COLORS. That the panels are made of Heather’s CLOTHING. Stunning. The Dreaming: Waking Hours is a gift.

Future State: Swamp Thing #1

“Do you wonder why I search for [humanity], Heather? Do you resent that I do?” Swamp Thing asks one of his plant children. “OF course she does. Of course! But you only ask so you can continue doing it,” replies another of his plant children, in Future State: Swamp Thing #1, DC Comics (2021).

Image: Ram V, Mike Perkins/DC Comics

I didn’t have any idea of what to anticipate going into Future State: Swamp Thing, however I was intrigued by its story of an apocalyptic future where Overload Thing raises a substantial household of plant beings to look for the last residues of mankind.

Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.