New X-Men
New X-Men 114.jpg
The cover to New X-Men #114, the first issue of the series.
Art by Frank Quitely.
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
Publication dateMay 2001 – March 2004
No. of issues41 (#114-154 + Annual 2001)
Main character(s)
Creative team
Created byGrant Morrison
Frank Quitely
Written by
  • Prentis Rollins
    Danny Miki

New X-Men is an American comic book ongoing series, written by Grant Morrison and featuring the mutant superhero team, the X-Men. It was a retitling of the then-ongoing second volume of the main X-Men series, and shares the series' numbering, as opposed to creating a different ongoing series with a new number one issue. During a revamp of the entire X-Men franchise, newly appointed Marvel Comics Editor-in-Chief Joe Quesada spoke of his idea for flagship titles like X-Men to regain some of their "former glory," as well as regaining critical acclaim.[1]

To that end, Quesada recruited writer Grant Morrison, at that point best known for their high-profile works at DC Comics, both in the Vertigo imprint of mature titles in The Invisibles, as well as a long run in the DC Universe with the company's premiere super hero team, the Justice League of America in the JLA title.

Story arcs

The full run of Morrison's New X-Men consisted of eight full story arcs with one issue designed to be read in between the first and second arcs, as all stories in New X-Men are largely interconnected and tell a long-form narrative.

It is in this story that Wolverine discovers most of the details of his past (although they are not revealed to the reader), and where it is discovered that Weapon X is actually Weapon Ten. Weapon Plus is also discovered to go back to at least World War II, with their first program revealed to be Operation: Rebirth which created the original Captain America (who is designated by the program as Weapon I).
It is in the final act of this arc that Jean, using the Phoenix Force, allows Scott to return to the X-Men and begin a life with Emma Frost in an act of compassion and love, as well as ensuring that the future in which she now resides never comes to pass.


Some of the more long-lasting changes occurred during Morrison's run. The secondary mutation of Beast resembles a lion-like creature rather than his former ape-like appearance. Emma Frost was introduced as a member of the team. The ties between Jean Grey and the Phoenix (retconning the retcon) were revisited and the death of Phoenix occurs in Morrison's run. The school expanded from simply a training center to a legitimate school with dozens of mutant students, a story idea that was first explored in the X-Men film.[2] One of the more controversial events of New X-Men happened in issue #115 when the island of Genosha and its inhabitants, including Magneto, were completely destroyed. This set the tone that dominated the rest of Morrison's tenure on the book.[1]

In June 2004, Chuck Austen, previously the writer of Uncanny X-Men, moved to New X-Men with issue #155. The title of the series reverted to its original title of X-Men in July 2004 with issue #157 during the "X-Men Reload" event.


Xorn and Magneto

Grant Morrison intended Xorn to be Magneto from his first appearance. As Morrison stated in an interview after they left New X-Men, "In my opinion, there really shouldn't have been an actual Xorn - he had to be fake, that was the cruel point of him".[3] In fact, soon after the revelation of Xorn's identity in New X-Men #146, readers pointed out that clues that Xorn was actually Magneto had been hidden throughout Morrison's run.[4][5] According to then-X-Men writer Chuck Austen, the X-Men editors liked the Xorn character and hoped Morrison would change their mind about the revelation; when they didn't, the editors asked Austen to bring Xorn back as a separate character. Marvel also wanted to continue using Magneto; Austen stated that "Marvel saw value in Magneto not being a mass-murderer of New Yorkers."[6] Morrison has expressed criticism of this subsequent retcon in interviews.[7][8]

Marvel retconned the Xorn/Magneto revelation and brought back Xorn and Magneto after Morrison's departure. In Uncanny X-Men #442 and 443, Xavier takes the body of Magneto to Genosha where they hold a funeral for the deceased mutant leader. However, in the last page of Excalibur #1, Xavier meets Magneto alive and well on Genosha. In subsequent issues of Excalibur, Xavier and Magneto debate the true identity and motives of Xorn, the individual whose bandage-wrapped body they brought to Genosha. In the same month, Magneto returned in Chris Claremont's new Excalibur book, Austen's X-Men #157 introduced a new Xorn named Shen Xorn. Shen Xorn claims to be the twin brother of the original Xorn (now referred to as Kuan-Yin Xorn) who, under the influence of the entity known as Sublime, had pretended to be Magneto. This claim is supported when Emma Frost conducts a thorough mind scan of Shen. Not too long after, Shen Xorn disappears when he unleashes the gravitational forces of a black hole in the course of helping the X-Men defeat an attack by a Brotherhood of Mutants led by Exodus. Later, Shen Xorn is revealed to have been one of the mutants depowered due to the events of the House of M miniseries.

The true identity of Xorn, and his relationship to the character Magneto, became a subject of confusion to fans. Marvel refrained from giving a complete explanation, eventually hinting that the summer 2005 crossover House of M would clear up the situation.[9] The Xorn entry in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: X-Men 2005 stated that "Kuan-Yin eventually revealed himself to be a duplicate of the X-Men's nemesis Magneto, a transformation believed to have been caused by Magneto's daughter, the Scarlet Witch." This explanation was based on a suggestion in House of M #7 wherein Doctor Strange speculates that Wanda has been 'playing with the world' for far longer than even she knows, and may have been responsible for her father's puzzling rebirth. An alternative explanation has since been given in the pages of New Avengers since, according to Marvel editor Tom Brevoort, "nobody was satisfied with that offhanded non-explanation, and it didn’t make a heck of a lot of sense by itself even as a throwaway".[10]


Main article: Astonishing X-Men § Joss Whedon run

As far back as 2003, popular television and film writer Joss Whedon was rumored to be Morrison's successor on the New X-Men title.[11] In an interview, Whedon clarified he was asked to take over the New X-Men title, but this was instead changed to a new volume of Astonishing X-Men in order to accommodate his collaborator John Cassaday. Whedon then clarified that his run on Astonishing was a direct continuation of Morrison's work when he said, "I was reading New X-Men and loving it. The other part of the equation was [working with] John Cassaday. I had been talking about doing something with John for years. Then, once I signed on, I was told it wasn't New X-Men but Astonishing X-Men. I was like 'What?' But I took the same premise and cast that Grant established and worked from there because I was caught up in that book."[12]

Collected editions

Title Material Collected Publication Date ISBN
New X-Men, vol. 1: E Is For Extinction New X-Men Vol. 1 #114–117; New X-Men Annual 2001 December 2002 0-7851-0811-4
New X-Men, vol. 2: Imperial New X-Men Vol. 1 #118–126 July 2002 0-7851-0887-4
New X-Men, vol. 3: New Worlds New X-Men Vol. 1 #127–133 December 2002 0-7851-0976-5
New X-Men, vol. 4: Riot at Xavier's New X-Men Vol. 1 #134–138 July 2003 0-7851-1067-4
New X-Men, vol. 5: Assault on Weapon Plus New X-Men Vol. 1 #139–145 December 2003 0-7851-1119-0
New X-Men, vol. 6: Planet X New X-Men Vol. 1 #146–150 April 2004 0-7851-1201-4
New X-Men, vol. 7: Here Comes Tomorrow New X-Men Vol. 1 #151–154 July 2004 0-7851-1345-2
New X-Men by Grant Morrison: Ultimate Collection, vol. 1 New X-Men Vol. 1 #114–126; New X-Men Annual 2001 June 2008 0-7851-3251-1
New X-Men by Grant Morrison: Ultimate Collection, vol. 2 New X-Men Vol. 1 #127–141 September 2008 0-7851-3252-X
New X-Men by Grant Morrison: Ultimate Collection, vol. 3 New X-Men Vol. 1 #142–154 December 2008 0-7851-3253-8
Uncanny X-Men, vol. 6: Bright New Mourning New X-Men Vol. 1 #155–156; Uncanny X-Men #435–436, #442–443 August 2004 0-7851-1406-8
New X-Men Omnibus New X-Men Vol. 1 #114–154; New X-Men Annual 2001 December 2006 0-7851-2326-1

Further reading


  1. ^ a b New X-Men, The Comics Journal
  2. ^ Brevoort, Tom; DeFalco, Tom; Manning, Matthew K.; Sanderson, Peter; Wiacek, Win (2017). Marvel Year By Year: A Visual History. DK Publishing. p. 306. ISBN 978-1465455505.
  3. ^ Ellis, Jonathan (2004). "Grant Morrison: Master & Commander". Pop Archived from the original on December 3, 2013. Retrieved September 16, 2006.
  4. ^ Baker, Jesse (2003). "Words Of Questionable Wisdom: We Hardly Knew You". Comics Archived from the original on July 8, 2012. Retrieved July 1, 2008.
  5. ^ O'Brien, Paul (2003). "Review of New X-Men #146". The Archived from the original on December 14, 2006. Retrieved September 16, 2006.
  6. ^ Contino, Jennifer M. (2004). "Chuck Austen X-Men Writer". Archived from the original on September 29, 2007. Retrieved September 17, 2006.
  7. ^ "SDCC '06: Wildstorm Panel". 2006. Retrieved September 16, 2006.[dead link]
  8. ^ Pop Thought - Alex Ness Archived 2008-05-26 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ "Chris Claremont on New Excalibur". Newsarama. 2005. Retrieved September 16, 2006.[dead link]
  10. ^ "New Joe Fridays: Week 8". Newsarama. 2006. Retrieved September 16, 2006.[dead link]
  11. ^ Doane, Alan David. "All The Rage: The Prodigal Son Rages". Comics Bulletin. Archived from the original on 14 January 2009. Retrieved 9 September 2017.
  12. ^ Epstein, Daniel Robert. "Joss Whedon Talks X-Men, Firefly Movie". UnderGroundOnline. Archived from the original on 29 May 2004. Retrieved 9 September 2017.