"Age of X"
Variant cover of Age of X: Alpha #1 (Jan. 2011)
Art by Olivier Coipel
PublisherMarvel Comics
Publication dateJanuary – May 2011
Genre
Title(s)
Main character(s)
Creative team
Writer(s)Mike Carey
Penciller(s)
Inker(s)
  • Jay Leisten
  • Allen Martinez
Colorist(s)Brian Reber

"Age of X" is a comic book storyline published by Marvel Comics as part of its X-Men series. The storyline is set in an alternate reality known as Earth-11326. Running from January to April 2011, it is similar in name and tone to the 1995 "Age of Apocalypse" (AoA) storyline.

Plot

Background

After the announcement of the storyline in December 2010, Marvel added QR codes on selected comics. These codes were linked to five different historical logs, each providing background for the "Age of X".

Storyline

The mutants are almost extinct, tortured by a strike force led by Colonel Graydon Creed. The first signs of the Age of X appeared in X-Men: Legacy #244; the events were removed from the Earth-616 mainstream continuity, with no memories of the alternate lives.

The primary event occurs 1,000 days[7] after Magneto moved most of the mutants to Fortress X, their last bastion.[8] Human forces are trying to reach the citadel; although they have always failed to do so, they have inflicted many casualties on the mutants. Legacy/Rogue acts as a "Reaper", storing the thoughts of those killed in battle. After one of her reapings, Legacy sees the capture of Shadowcat (who was returning from a mission in the outside world). Rogue finds the camera which Shadowcat is trying to hide, and discovers that all the pictures in it are blank. Using Madison Jeffries's absorbed powers, Legacy infiltrates the X-Brig (Fortress X's detention facility) to question Shadowcat. There she is seen by the Earth-616 Blindfold, who hints that this reality is "wrong" and asks her to ask Professor X about the "scar tissue".[9] As she speaks with Shadowcat and touches a comatose Xavier, Legacy begins a mental attack on every mutant inside the fortress; seen by Danger, she becomes a fugitive. Hunted by Dani Moonstar's Cadre, she is saved by Gambit. They are attacked by Magneto,[10] who fakes their deaths and explains that he sent Shadowcat out to investigate because he is convinced something is wrong. As Magneto returns to the brig to free Shadowcat and Professor X, X (the voice controlling Fortress X) sends the Cadre after him. Gambit and Legacy (who are in the room at the center of the fortress) discover that their universe has been stolen and is kept in a box. When Professor X is freed, he telepathically shows his pursuers and a reluctant Legion the truth about himself and the reality in which they think they are living. The Age of X was created when Legion's mind reacted to Doctor Nemesis's attempt to restore it to sanity.[11] A new persona (with new powers) was born, creating a new reality to protect Legion's personalities. This manifestation of Legion's power assumed the appearance of Moira MacTaggert to confuse Xavier and protect Legion. Moira confronted Legacy and Gambit, revealing that she is also X. Cornered by Xavier, X launches a last offensive on the fortress.

Moira removes the walls, allowing the humans to enter the fortress. Legion appears, while Xavier, Magneto and Shadowcat try to stop Moira, who created the universe so Legion could be the hero he always wanted to be. Weeping in his arms, she promises to create as many universes for him as he wants. While Moira is distracted, Legion absorbs her back into his body and erases all the humans fighting the mutants. He goes to the battlefield, apologizes and rewrites the universe (returning everything to the way it was). The entire timeline lasts for seven days in reality[12] and the mutants return to Utopia with the memory of their 616 lives; Xavier and Emma Frost reveal that the telepaths will help anyone who wants to lose their Age of X memories.[13]

Characters

Heroes

The mutant resistance was formed by Magneto to protect the surviving mutants from Graydon Creed and his mutant-hunters:[10]

Other X-Men characters appear in the storyline in marginal roles and as inhabitants of Fortress X, including Angel, Anole, Avalanche, Beak, Bling!, Chamber, Colossus, Dr. Cecilia Reyes, Domino, Forge, Gentle, Indra, Jubilee, Lady Mastermind, Loa, Martinique Jason, Northstar, Rockslide, Scalphunter, Surge, Toad, Trance, Vertigo and Warpath (here known as Berserker).[20]

X-Brig mutants

Dangerous mutants are locked in Fortress X's X-Brig. Most have telepathic powers and wear helmets to inhibit them.[7] X used the brig to imprison Professor X, who knew his true nature[13] and convinced the other mutants that telepathic powers cannot exist; if they did, they would be very dangerous. On Magneto's orders, Danger is the only warden of the brig and runs it with several drone copies of herself.[7] Among the inmates are:

Villains

Other characters

Fortress X

Fortress X is a mutant haven which is the main setting for this storyline. Magneto used the skyscrapers in which the mutants were cornered, the Chrysler Building, the Empire State Building and Grand Central Terminal to create it by controlling the buildings' frameworks, removing them and reconstructing them as one large building. Grand Central Terminal is the fortress' security hub. Fortress X is in a battle-scarred wasteland.

Fortress X interweaves stairways and streets in residential and communal areas. Private dormitories are used by each mutant or couple. Mutant inhabitants may drink and play cards at the Rat Run bar operated by Wolverine. There is also an observatory where Madison Jeffries works.

Magneto has a large observation room containing a pillar with monitors mounted on it. The X-Brig is a high-security vault many stories above ground that imprisons dangerous mutants.

Issues

Reception

Age of X: Alpha received a rating of 7.5 out of 10 from IGN,[23] and a rating of 3.5 out of 5 from Comic Book Resources.[24] The reviews described it as a good setup, providing a framework for the rest of the series. X-Men: Legacy #245 received a rating of 3.5 out of 5 from Comic Book Resources.[25]

References

  1. ^ a b "Historical Log 1A: The March For Purity". Age of X. Marvel Characters, Inc. January 2011. Retrieved 30 May 2012.
  2. ^ a b "Historical Log 2B: The Phoenix Destroys Albany". Age of X. Marvel Characters, Inc. January 2011. Retrieved 30 May 2012.
  3. ^ a b c "Historical Log 3C: Mutant-Hunting Exonims Begin "The Decimation"". Age of X. Marvel Characters, Inc. January 2011. Retrieved 30 May 2012.
  4. ^ a b c d "Historical Log 4D: Fantastic Four Arrested".
  5. ^ a b "Historical Log 5E: Avengers Tasked with Hunting Mutants".
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x Age of X: Universe #1
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x X-Men: Legacy #245
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r Age of X: Alpha
  9. ^ a b c d e f New Mutants #22
  10. ^ a b c d e f g X-Men: Legacy #246
  11. ^ a b X-Men: Legacy #244
  12. ^ a b X-Men: Legacy #248
  13. ^ a b c d X-Men: Legacy #247
  14. ^ a b c Richards, Dave (2011-01-12). "AGE OF X COMMUNIQUÉS: Cannonball, Gambit, Revenant". Comic Book Resources. Archived from the original on 2011-10-15. Retrieved 2012-06-07.
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Age of X: Universe #2
  16. ^ a b c d e f g New Mutants #23
  17. ^ a b "Mike Carey interview about New Mustants #23".
  18. ^ "Age of X Assessment: Chapter 1". Marvel.com. 2011-02-28. Retrieved 2012-06-07.
  19. ^ Richards, Dave (2011-01-26). "AGE OF X COMMUNIQUÉS: Frenzy, Magma, Cypher". Comic Book Resources. Archived from the original on 2011-03-02. Retrieved 2012-06-07.
  20. ^ a b c d Richards, Dave (2011-01-20). "AGE OF X COMMUNIQUÉS: Berserker, Hellion, Nightmare". Comic Book Resources. Archived from the original on 2012-10-14. Retrieved 2012-06-07.
  21. ^ New Mutants #24
  22. ^ a b c d Richards, Dave (2011-01-05). "AGE OF X COMMUNIQUÉS: Basilisk, Legacy". Comic Book Resources. Archived from the original on 2011-10-15. Retrieved 2012-06-07.
  23. ^ "IGN: Age of X: Alpha Review". Retrieved 2010-06-16.
  24. ^ "Comic Book Resources: Age of X: Alpha Review". Retrieved 2010-06-16.
  25. ^ "Comic Book Resources: X-Men: Legacy #245 Review". Retrieved 2010-06-16.