Jonathan Hickman’s twisted tale is leaving readers bewildered, but are we overlooking the obvious?
As much as I fancy myself an X-Men aficionado, I have to confess Hickman’s two books are extremely hard to predict. There’s no apparent window into this man’s mind. He gave us a graph detailing Moira’s time-looped life and it still left people spinning in circles- including a couple of “professional” YouTube reviewers that completely missed the target. Almost from the beginning, we knew that his story was broken up into 4-parts. Even then, we were shocked to LATER discover one of the timelines, namely Year 100, was detailing Moira’s 9th life.
On the graph, Moira’s 9th timeline was left ominously unfinished. I assumed it was to not spoil something, but it was because the story was still unfolding. It was starring us right in the face, and no one that I was aware of anyway, saw that revelation coming. As much as I could tell, most thought the timeline was set and everything we were currently reading within the two books was based on the main timeline. We were wrong then, and it’s possible, even with access to all of our information about the series, including a slew of dossiers, we’re still missing the bigger picture.
If Year 100 was Moira’s 9th life, what’s to say the events that are playing out in the Year 10 story isn’t another one of her lives? Specifically, her 6th life that is conveniently missing from both provided graphs.
Some aspects support the notion. Each one of Moira’s attempts at solving the “mutant problem” is wildly different from the last or the one that follows.
If you’re at all familiar with the current status quo of the X-Men universe, then you understand it’s in shambles. Cyclops lost an eye, multiple key characters are dead, including many featured on the Dawn of X books. Adding to that, thanks to a widely administered X-Gene “cure,” mutants are barely hanging on.
But while you war, we children sit in judgment of those above us… we judge and find you both wanting.- Mother Mold
That’s not the world we’re being presented in Year 10. Mutants are thriving. Even more so than when Magneto’s Genosha had become its own country before it was wiped out. Characters are acting odd given what they’d recently gone through and in positions that shouldn’t exist. Not to mention, if you take into account the recent snuff-film that took place in House of X #4, then you are going to be racking your brain… unless, Year 10 is to her 6th life, what Year 100 was to her 9th.
Last week I loaned my copy of House of X to my neighbor. He’s a super casual fan with a modest collection, but closely follows the genre’s movies and television. It allows us to have some interesting conversations, but his lack of modern-day knowledge of the books limits our exchanges. Several days later, after he read it twice, and his teenaged son quit halfway through, he admitted that he didn’t understand what was happening.
I assured him that not even seasoned veteran readers completely understand what’s happening. Before I could continue to plead the book’s case, he let me know that he loved it. He didn’t get it, but he loved it and was looking forward to reading the rest of the series as I provided it to him. I’m sure that’s the reason for all this. To provide a perfect jump-on point for new readers and where old ones can return without worrying about trying to catch up.
This is just a theory of mine. Believe me, I’m prepared to be 100% wrong, because I’m not emotionally prepared to accept that Nightcrawler and Wolverine just incinerated themselves. There’s no way we just watched Monet, Husk, Archangel, Mystique, Jean, and Cyclops die horrible deaths millions of miles away from Earth. Professor X just knowingly sent his most beloved students on a suicide mission.
This can only compute in my feeble brain if this version of Xavier is not the one we know. Also that hatchery scene from House of X #1 has to be good ol’ Chuck actively cloning his X-Men.
All this is obviously building up to something monumental. By the time this is all said and done, I suspect the X-Men landscape to be radically changed.
If you take a step back and look at it, this more than likely has a lot to do with Marvel Studios’ plans for the X-Men brand going forward. They may be detonating the whole X-Men comic book universe to make it more malleable for the upcoming slate of MCU movies. Either way, to say that what Mr. Hickman is doing is ambitious, would be a supreme understatement.