Writer: Peter David
Artist: Leonard Kirk
Reviewer: Rob Patey ( aka Optimous Douche – Ain’t It Cool News)
There are days I’m ashamed of my fangeezer status. We are a cantankerous lot who find a visceral thrill in bitching about comics and then bitch about the fact we always have to bitch about comics. X-FACTOR 250 is the body of proof on which I lay my claim.
We bemoan crossovers, foil covers, polybags and price hikes for a few extra pages of content: basically any tactic the publishers use to give landmark issues that extra special feeling of what can only be described as gravitas. X-FACTOR 250, a number of importance to some, for some reason, came with none of these trappings. While David has not had the power to keep every issue of X-FACTOR immune to “epic” feel or events from editorial mandates, he has done a very good job of doing it in a “just the tip” approach to keep this wonderful book insulated from the usual shenanigans that seem to prey upon mutant books like Sentinels of upsell.
Yesterday, I stood in my local comic ship with X-FACTOR in hand and uttered what I thought to be the innocuous statement “Isn’t this awesome, here’s issue 250 and it’s just like any other month.” Slowly the nerd heads turned, mouths white with foam from rabid fanmandom. Suddenly a lone voice was brave enough to direct towards my 6’ 5” frame, “Really? Really? It’s issue 250. They should have done something special.”
Listen you mealy mouthed fucker…
The fact that there even is a number 250 in this world of reboots, resets and reNows is special. The fact that one man has essentially married every issue of this title since the early 90’s is special. The fact that the series has stopped and started several times, but always felt like it’s been around is special. And the character progression of Jamie, Monet, Rhane – hell the whole gang – is so damn special, I can’t think of another comic that’s even come close to this true progression of life being reflected on the page. Tired of trapped in amber? You’re not reading X-FACTOR.
True fans of X-FACTOR will realize the specialness of this issue from the cover. The Hell on Earth War hath begun. Why is this special? Well, it all boils down to David’s unique and some will say arrogant ability to plant plot seeds years before they are ready to sprout. I say “arrogance” as an absolute compliment. If for some reason David had to leave this book, I pity the writer who takes over. With the way David germinates seemingly throw-away details, only he can truly know what the future does and should hold.
This month’s seed turned to sprout is the return of Tier, the wolf-baby Rhane Sinclair shunned shortly after birth and the afterbirth attack from hellfire born demons.
A few months ago Davidites will remember Rhane Sinclair gave birth to her wolf/demon child, Tier, after much ado about everything. Now, Tier has returned as a fully functioning 12 year old. He’s still being hunted by the mighty morphin Darwin and X-FACTOR is finally joining the fray.
This issue is rife with David’s panache for cultural references and witty dialog, even in light of the almost non-stop action that starts with Darwin hunting Tier and climaxes with the demons that plagued his birth coming forth to take on X-FACTOR so Tier can help usher in the end of all things (that’s why Darwin is so assed up the kid is still alive).
This issue also throws in a nice twist with the return of Guido, I have the worst yet best name in comics, Strong Guy, returning. Long fans will remember Guido’s recent return from the dead via the newfound resurrection powers of Layla Miller. Some say these resurrected folks come back soulless although this is the first time someone has switched from the side of angels. Guido storms X-FACTOR in an epic brouhaha with fists swinging. We’re not sure why yet, but that’s the allure of comics, the unfolding mystery as the story continues.
PSA – HELP PETER
I don’t normally do this, but I’ve read and enjoyed Mr. David’s work for years and as I mentioned, I feel he is the ONLY one who can keep the X-FACTOR gang together in a way I want to read. Peter suffered a stroke before the holidays and while he has insurance, the scumbags that run the system still gouge you on co-pays. Therapy and rehab are especially costly since some bean counter (not a doctor) determines rehabilitation an ancillary activity to true recovery.
If you want to help Peter, buying this wonderful jumping on point will help, but royalties are slow coming in. Same goes for buying any Marvel trades. Below is a list of was to help in order of the most immediate way to get the money to Peter and his family. This comes direct from the lovely Mrs. David
- Donate direct via PayPal
- Buy some of Peter’s beautiful prose e-books from Crazy 8 Press
- Buy anything off of Amazon from this link.
God speed Peter!