In the latest issue we don’t directly continue on from Magneto’s exploits in ‘Uncanny X-Men’ #16 and most likely won’t be seeing him again until his solo series launches later this year. For now we have another issue that really focuses on the students and while parts of it truly work, a couple pieces fell a little flat for me. Overall, a good read with more focus on the newly introduced mutants even though it didn’t do much to push the plot forward.

We start off with a shot that gives all of the students being dumped into an area that is strange and mysterious. Oh, and Bachalo made sure to give us an up skirt shot of one of the ladies in the very first panel that in retrospect really didn’t need to be added. That being said, it was my only complaint about the visuals because the rest of the issue was rendered quite beautiful by his expert touch.

Is it the Savage Land? While it may look similiar, that’s not why it’s so familiar for X-Men fans. They are in Tabula Rasa, a place in Montana that was created in a small area that rapidly evolved 130 million years in the span of a day. It’s a vastly underused setting (that should be completely cut off from the rest of the world) and is a nice change of pace from once again just tossing mutants into the Savage Land to see what happens. I’m honestly so sick of that location that to have a place with similar properties but with an entirely unique spin just works for me.

While the kids are messing with Eva about her very clear crush on Scott, we see that Hijack pulls out a cell phone to look up where they are (which, by the way, having one is against the rules that gets pointed out multiple times). The joking doesn’t continue for the kids, though, as a giant monster comes running past them and they are quickly split up from one another.

We see Eva and Goldballs fight off one monster and while Goldballs saved the day, Eva went missing. On another screen we see the Stepford Cuckoos having issues as reading the minds of some of the local inhabitants basically knock them out for the count.

We don’t get to find out much of what happens to Eva here only that she doesn’t want anyone to know. Clearly it’s the seeds for a long term plot or piece of character development. As the issue comes to a close, S.H.I.E.L.D. shows up having traced Hijack’s cell phone and he uses his powers to get them out of the situation. Does that deserve praise? Probably, but the fact was that he disobeyed orders had Scott kicking him out of his X-Men at the end of the issue.

The plot felt forced in parts but there was some great banter and character development that will clearly have Eva and Hijack to have some shining moments in upcoming issues. It had some solid moments but coming down from a Magneto-centric issue, it just wasn’t able to pull me in.


Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: Chris Bachalo