Wednesday, July 26, 2000

The Incomprehensible X-Men

I saw the X-Men movie on Monday. Wolverine kicks ass. 'Nuff said.

The movie inspired me to want to start reading comics again. And where better to start than with the X-Men comic book? But which one? I remember enough from my comic book reading days to know that Marvel produces a number of different versions of its most popular titles. So where could I see some of the complex battle of wills I had fun with in the movie? I eventually found a web site giving a guide to the X-Titles. Well, it was clear I'd need to be careful to pick the right title to avoid things such as a time-traveling X-Man from the future -- I was looking for basic, vanilla X-Men.

Further searching turned up the X-Axis, where some Scottish guy publishes weekly reviews of the various issues. Pretty entertaining, even for someone who doesn't read them. But it just confirmed one thing. There are no basic, vanilla X-Men anymore! It's all alternative universe this and space alien that. It's all fiendishly complicated to maintain continuity for some 45-year old guy who lives with his parents and will have a complete fit if something doesn't fit with one little piece of his 20-year collection of X-Men comics. ("But Aquaman, you cannot marry a woman without gills, you're from two different worlds.") I don't know, maybe I'm deluding myself into thinking there's somewhere I can go to get interesting superhero comic books without having to become an obsessive reader to understand what the h-e-double-hockeysticks is going on. But it apparently doesn't involve the X-Men.

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