Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Superhero Minimalism: X-Men: Fatal Attractions in Six Panels

This is the third in an ongoing series of posts where I attempt to provide a summary/trailer for comic book series using only one panel from each issue of the series. See the first post here and the second here.

Let's turn the clock back to late 1993: the comic book industry is booming, Image Comics is a shining new star in the firmament, and four new Supermen have taken the place of the recently-deceased Superman. Over at Marvel Comics, writers Fabian Nicieza and Scott Lobdell put together Fatal Attractions, a six-part crossover running through X-Factor #92, X-Force #25, Uncanny X-Men #304, X-Men #25, Wolverine #75, and Excalibur #71.

Here's my attempt to retell the story in only six panels, one from each issue (spoilers):

(click to enlarge)

What do you think? Should I have used a panel that more explicitly showed what happened to Wolverine? Did the issue of Excalibur add anything to the story? After re-reading Wolverine #75, I still think it was one of the best single issues of any superhero comic book from the 1990s. Do you agree? Finally, does the line "That the difference between his goal and that of Xavier's is nearly identical in intent if not in execution" make any sense? Shouldn't it have read something like, "That his goal and Xavier's goal are nearly identical in intent if not in execution"?


  1. That's pretty good. It's from a time where I had just stopped reading X-stuff I believe, and I am not super familiar with it, but what you presented seems to present a fairly cohesive story outline.

    I looked at the panels before I read your closing paragraph. I though the same thing. It really doesn't make sense. On the funny side, it is the sort of dumb mistake people make when they are giving grand little speeches like that.

  2. Yes yes, this is all well and good.

    But when will we get an Archie review? HMMMMM?

  3. Honestly, I think you nailed it.

    By the way, I'm running a blog with quite a similar theme, take a look at it and feel free to suggest and comment (heck, you can even collaborate).


  4. As an English major who graduated cum loud-ey!!! I will absolutely back YOU, oh great one, up, 100%, in your comments concerning that last line in the final panel! What an interesting thing to discuss. In fact, before I knew you were going to specifically broach this subject of the complexities of comprehending that line, I spent a carload of time staring at the way it was all set up, totally puzzled and not knwing why...to the point where I almost spaced out! Wow! I even cocked my head quizzically, just like the little puppy in the window... but that didn't work either, even though it does at times.

    I was about to break our "company" dinnerware when I finally got a grip! Phew!!!

    Anyway, yes!!! I think you are CORRECT!!!

    It was flatly profoundly puzzling in the way it was phrased. It flopped, darn it. That is soooooo frustrating!
    I should know, because we English majors, when we are good at what we do, ARE expert bull-s***ers.
    We spin tales that make people confused as heck! That is our job!

    How fun it would be if we borng English majors could be... writing comics! YES!...Be writing comics, writing comics! Hoorah, Hooray! Calloo, Callay! At the very least we boring English majors deserve a bit of FUN!!!

    Anyone care to demonstrate an execution of that?

    Thanks, Sandy, for another great job! You rock the house with your totally on target precise and fun summaries!