Continuing the story begun in ‘X-Men’ #20, the X-Men are still in the fictitious Eastern European nation of Puternicstan, which has acquired a fleet of Sentinels, which they have reprogrammed, so that they can attack non-mutant targets.  Allied with them is War Machine, all battling to prevent a global incident as the Governor of Puternicstan plans to sic her Sentinels on neighboring country Symkaria.  It takes Storm, Colossus and War Machine’s full blast assault to take down just one Sentinel.  Things don’t look so good for them defeating a whole army of them.

Psylocke, Warpath and Jubilee have their hands full with armed guards, but Domino manages to capture a scientist who may hold the key to defeating the Sentinels.  Once the Sentinels are dispatched, surprisingly, it’s Jubilee who has the best luck stopping several of them.  She only makes a small dent, unfortunately, which requires Storm to max her powers out in an attempt to stop the killer robots!

I suppose it’s refreshing to have an X-Men book that has nothing to do with the ‘Regenesis’ relaunch.  This is a straight-ahead action book.  The team is made up mostly of characters that don’t have a home anywhere else in the X-Universe, but do have rabid fans.  It’s a perfectly satisfying tale.  I like that it’s sort of an espionage story set within the Marvel Universe.  (Dr. Doom and Dracula, two other Eastern European monarchs are referenced.) Jubilee gets a bit of spotlight here, not just fighting the Sentinels, but the effects of her vampirism also factor in.

The art is very good!  There were actually two art teams on this issue, but it’s consistent enough that I can’t discern who drew what!  The faces are especially nice.  Both Storm and Psylocke have distinctively ethnic features.  That’s a good thing!  Most artists simply render ethnic characters with sharp Caucasian features then rely on the coloration to identify them as being not-white.  The extra step is appreciated!

This book works if you are interested in an espionage book starring super heroes.  But if you want the traditional X-Men stories dealing with discrimination or uber-villains, it may not work for you.  It’s not my favorite, but taking it for what it is, I find it to be a unique spin on the X-Men.  It’s just an action book starring mutants.  Nothing more, nothing less.

Verdict: Borrow

X-MEN #22
Written by Victor Gischler
Art by Will Conrad and Steve Kurth
Cover by Adi Granov