Last summer’s House of X and Powers of X wasn’t exactly ‘light reading.’ With twelve issues to burn through, Jonathan Hickman packed a lot of info into the event that effectively burned down and rebuilt the X-Men universe as we knew it. Though, between me and you – it’s all smoke and mirrors. I think we’re heading towards a huge reboot.
But I digress. While the X-Men are the way they are – it’s uber important to understand it, if you’re planning on really enjoying it. Most of what’s out there is basic X-Men fare, but some elements which were presented last summer have been slowly elaborated on and developed since.
For those of us with shorter attention spans or having more than a comic book to worry about these days – here’s a comprehensive guide to how the mutant nation of Krakoa works.
The Quiet Council
Essentially, Krakoa is run by a committee. And probably for good reason. Any time one group or individual attempted to do anything close to this – it was met with disaster. To be successful, all of mutant-kind had to band together under a single banner.
The Council consists of four subgroups; Winter, Spring, Summer, and Autumn. Each group has 3 members – each owning a single vote when making governing decisions. This includes laws and judgment when those laws are broken, as was the case with one Victor Creed aka Sabretooth.
The members of the Autumn table are Professor Xavier, Magneto, and Apocalypse. They are the executive officers – though I don’t know if their votes hold more weight than the others. What we do know is that after being tried by the Council, they are the ones that pass judgment on the guilty.
They are also tasked with meeting and negotiating with foreign diplomats – both on the island and abroad.
Emma Frost (White Queen), Sebastian Shaw (Black King), and Kitty “Kate” Pryde (Red Queen) comprise Spring. Still very much operating as the Hellfire Club, they oversee the distribution of the Krakoa drugs that are shipped across the globe to the nation’s allies. They also manipulate the planet’s black market of the product.
For the moment, they mainly utilize seacraft to move the drugs to countries they either don’t have a treaty with, are in negotiations with, or have no formal relation at all (hence the black market). On the side, they also ferry mutants in distress back to Krakoa – often via smuggling them onto Kitty’s ship – the Marauder.
Of course, there was going to be a table dedicated to the X-Men – even if they don’t call themselves as much. Summer is manned by Storm, Nightcrawler, and Jean Grey. Out of all the tables, they are the most active in the field – but don’t appear to serve a specific purpose.
However, two out of the three do participate in the Resurrection Protocol – one more than the other. Storm presides over the ceremony that follows the rebirth of a mutant. And it is that – a ceremony. Jean is the backup telepath, if and when Professor Xavier isn’t available to transfer a mind into a new host. Even his own.
The last table, Winter, consists of Mister Sinister, Mystique, and Exodus. Again, they don’t appear to serve a specific purpose like Autumn and Spring – but perhaps they have another use. Deterrence. As I said before – for Krakoa to work, mutants have to come under one banner.
Mister Sinister himself is or has been important to Krakoa in gathering the DNA of every mutant in existence for use in the Resurrection Protocols. If left to his designs – he’d be a liability for the entire nation. Either making trouble for the rest of the world or directly working against Krakoa.
Besides – he’s already proven to be a turn-coat in one of Moira’s previous lives. Best to keep him closer. Exodus, while the most powerful of the three – may be the most trustworthy. At one point in time, he’s been a follower of both Magneto and Apocalypse – two members of the executive table.
However, Exodus isn’t just godly strong – he’s charismatic. They probably needed to make sure that charisma and fear-inducing might are under their control.
Mystique is another issue. They know she’d be a problem if left unchecked. Not to mention her determination to have her precog deceased wife, Destiny, revived – something Xavier, Magneto, and Moira don’t want.
Not every vote comes from a season-themed table. There’s a final one called “Krakoa.” Unlike the others it consists of just two members – Cypher and Krakoa itself. Their function is quite clear. Krakoa is the living land that the nation is built upon, and Cypher is the man that interprets its wishes.
Krakoa isn’t just the land, but also the prison. As we saw with Sabretooth – the guilty are imprisoned in stasis deep within. Cypher and Krakoa are an essential piece of the government’s entire structure and bid to survive in the future. Without them, none of this matters.
Krakoa isn’t just politics and economics. Every country needs a defense force. Seeing that, the council appointed four mutants as “captains.” Magik, Gorgon, Bishop, and Cyclops as the Captain Commander. What their actual functions are have yet to be shown – outside of the obvious – but some of it is clear.
So far, we have seen Cyclops and Gorgon serve as personal bodyguards for the council – a kind of secret service. Cyclops and Bishop are among the most tactically sound minds among mutant-kind. No mystery why they are in their current roles. Gorgon and Magik are less transparent.
The Gorgon is a classic Wolverine villain with ties to Japan’s supervillain underworld as well as Hydra and the Hand. Krakoa isn’t always going to be at odds with other countries. The criminal underworld can be just as big of a problem. Having someone with experience and connections would help.
Though science has played a huge part in the X-Men – so has the occult. Time after time, the X-Men have had their behinds handed to them by magical beings such as Juggernaut and a plethora of demons from Limbo. With Illyana “Magik” Rasputin as a captain, perhaps some of that can be alleviated. She also appears to be in charge of the Sexton; Generation-X, New X-Men, New Mutants, etc.
While the Five mutants responsible for the nation’s biggest selling point aren’t technically part of the government – they are held in the same regard. Or even higher. Proteus, Tempus, Goldballs, Hope Summers, and Elixir are the five most important mutants on the island.
Without them, death for any mutant would be permanent and Krakoa would have to populate the old-fashioned way – which could take decades. Assuming you trust that Resurrection is all it’s made out to be. The process requires each of them to perform a specific part of the task. Goldballs provides an egg. Proteus manipulates the egg into being viable. After DNA is introduced, Elixir begins the metabolic process.
Tempus accelerates the process of maturing the egg and host body to the appropriate age. Hope then uses her powers as an amp to ensure all their powers are functioning at peak efficiency. She’s like a conductor of sorts. At best there are only one or two mutants in existence that could replace one of Five, which is what makes them so precious.
Deep in the shadows of Krakoa is Moira MacTaggart. Firmly stashed away in Krakoa’s No-Space, Moira is the reason the Krakoan nation exists. This is her 7th attempt at creating a bright future for the mutant race. It’s also the most ambitious and probably why there are so many precautions put into place.
Professor Xavier and Magneto may make up 2/3 of the executive table – but they don’t make any serious decisions without conferring with their nation’s shadow architect. Just to be clear – the world thinks Moira MacTaggart is long dead, so her influence over Krakoa is unknown. But she’s still one of the most influential figures in the government.
There are other Krakoans that serve the nation. Selene and Emplate keep track of the population; Sage is in charge of communications and the portal system; and Black Tom manages the island’s security.
Hickman’s world-building is quite impressive, and I think he still has more stories to tell before it’s all set up. Too bad it’s all more than likely going to burn to the ground.
What did you think about the inner-workings of Krakoa? Let us know below.