As much as I have enjoyed X-Men Forever, I have expressed my doubts about the title in general, but with last weeks release of X-Factor Forever gives it a whole sister title, and I confess I really like the idea. Taking What-If a step further, while providing stories with which we readers have an emotional investment, which I suppose was the reaction to many readers to the new Claremont series, but that passed me by.
I adored Louise Simonson’s run on X-factor at the time, and although there is a slight disconnect for me when seeing the domestic bliss aboard Ship, this was a return to more halcyon days, before the Shadow King, the Muir Isle Saga and the big shake up. The Muir Isle saga was a classic story that engaged all the X-Fans, but the consequences, not so much. Even if it did give rise to Peter David’s run on X-Factor.
As a marketing technique, I love it. No longer any need for large cohesive lines that are forced to interweave plot lines and promote both each other and a specific style. That is not to criticise the alternative lines, but in the wake of Ultimatum, Ultimate Marvel seems to have drifted in the same apocalyptic direction as WildStorm (only not quite so drastically), where as other lines have fallen into obscurity. Remember the Ultraverse? Or the New Universe? 2099?
How about a Mantra Forever title? Or in my mind a must-have – D.P.7 Forever. Strikeforce Morituri? Unique stand –alone titles that can rise or fall on their own merits, not dependant of a mass media launch, or half a dozen shared universe titles. Free from the editorial chains of the mainstream titles, yet thanks to the regularity of dimension hopping we can still see crossovers. Exiles Forever without even having their own title!
Louise Simonson clearly states where she intends to go with this title, and I for one am looking forward to as she describes a whole new direction for mutant history.
I remember the Beast stating in ‘Extinction Of The Species’ that M-Day had wiped mutants from all the neighbouring realities as well. The interdimensional tsunami seen in the House Of M and combated by Captain Britain and Psylocke reinforced that statement. Still, one has to wonder how far those effects travelled, it didn’t seem to bother the Exiles.
Then again, that is all several years away in both of the Forever titles.
I do wonder if these will only appeal to older readers like myself, or whether younger readers picking these up will be encouraged to dive into the back issue bins and the trade paperbacks. I hope so.
Let’s see more of these. Alpha Flight Forever. Fallen Angels Forever (especially since Ariel seems to have shared the very edge of the spotlight recently). Thunderstrike Forever.
Any suggestions people? What would you like to see?