all-new-x-men-16Having just finished up with ‘X-Men: Battle Of The Atom’ #1, I am so ridiculously glad we don’t have to wait a week for the second installment. With such high praise for the first issue (I wanted to give it more than 5 atoms), one has to ask how the second stacked up? Well I felt it was just as strong, if not stronger, than the first chapter.

How did they pull that off? Well between action and a couple of big reveals, that’s how!

We open the pages directly where ‘X-Men: Battle Of The Atom #1 – Chapter 1’ ended with characters from the future suddenly showing up. The standing bald man is Xavier! No, not Charles, he’s still dead. This is the grandson of Charles Xavier, so it would that make him Legion’s son? Could it be Legion and Blindfold’s son? That isn’t clarified. What is clarified is that he has inherited his father’s powers. We’ll get into that. The giant Ice monster is confirmed to be Iceman, Kitty Pride is herself and hugs Wolverine as if she hasn’t seen him in years, an Old Deadpool does the same thing, a mysterious masked woman who will be explained later, Molly Hayes of The Runaways, and another future iteration of Beast.

all-new-x-men-16aThey are telling the current X-men that the young X-men must be sent back into the past or the future will be ruined. That’s when Wolverine pops his claws and all hell breaks loose. When everyone is able to calm down, Logan claims it wasn’t him that did it and the only person who could have forced his hand was.. suddenly not there. Jean Grey grabbed Cyclops and ran out in the confusion.

When they wonder what could have caused their departure, Xavier admits that he was blocking everyone from reading their minds.

While Scott and Jean are on the run, the All-New X-Men say they will go after her. The Future X-Men ask to join in. When that happens, Rachael questions the masked woman who removes her mask and we see that it’s actually an older Jean Grey. The reason she wants to send herself back is because she knows what happens to the future if she doesn’t.

It’s something bad.

all-new-x-men-16bSo, while Jean Grey hasn’t in theory been resurrected once again, we do have an older one once more.

Is this temporary? Most likely. Will it lead to another version of Jean Grey? That’s my million dollar question.

More and more often though I wonder if the events from ‘Battle of the Atom’ will in someway allow for a return of either Jean Grey or Charles Xavier to the living. We’ve alreadyseenthat Cyclops being killed and brought back to life which then caused his future self to reappear. Will this also happen with two dead fan favorites? It’s still a bit early to tell but it’s a possible way to retcon a few deaths from the past few years (or cause some new ones as it’s hinted Wolverine may be dead in this future timeline.)

I’m still just as excited as I was after the first issue of this crossover and now my only complaint is that I need to wait a week for the third installment.

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ALL NEW X-MEN #16 – BATTLE OF THE ATOM CHAPTER 2
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: Stuart Immonen