After nearly a decade of collecting and planning, it’s finally here: I’m tackling my entire 50-year collection of X-Men comics with the intent of reading every single issue, and you’re invited along for the ride!
Rather than start from The Silver Age and trundle forward through a lot of very wordy classic comics, we’re taking inspiration from Marvel’s Epic Collections and jumping around from era to era and title to title.
I don’t know how I could start anywhere but with the arc that brought me to comic collecting, which marks the end of the truly classic period of X-Men – Chris Claremont and Jim Lee’s X-Men (1991) #1-3 (found in the Guide to X-Men, Vol. 2). This story arc is the platonic ideal of a major faceoff against Magneto with a cast of a dozen X-Men, many of them in the Jim Lee uniforms that would follow them to X-Men: The Animated Series a year later.
Do these comics still hold up today? And, does Claremont leave the series doing right by his cast of indomitable-willed woman? Watch this mega-sized episode and find out!
Want to keep up with the next six weeks of (re-)reading? Here’s our schedule:
3/26 – New Mutants (1983) #26-28, which introduced Legion – we’ll read this just before the debut of Season 2 of his show on FX. See the Guide to New Mutants & Young X-Men for collection information.
4/2 – X-Men: Worlds Apart (2008) #1-4, which brought Storm back to the X-Men fold after several years as Black Panther’s co-star. You can find this on the Guide to X-Men Limited Series.
4/9 – Exiles (2001) #1-4 will let us catch up on the debut of the Exiles just in time for Saladin Ahmed’s new Exiles series. Did you know I have a Guide to Exiles? I bet you didn’t!
4/16 – Excalibur: The Sword Is Drawn OGN (1987) was the debut of the classic Excalibur line-up of Captain Britain, Meggan, Nightcrawler, Kitty Pryde, and Rachel Summers – one of my most beloved comics runs of all time. See the Guide to Excalibur for more information.
4/23 – Cable & Deadpool (2004) #1-6 merged these two Rob Liefeld creations for the first time after the cancellation of the short-running sequels to their long-running 90s series. Visit either the Guide to Deadpool or Guide to Cable for collection information.
4/30 – (Uncanny) X-Men (1963) #1-3 is where it all started! Have you ever read Stan Lee and Jack Kirby X-Men before? It’s a wordy ride that can sometimes surprise you with themes that still resonate today. You’ll want to leave yourself some extra time to read these issues; Silver Age comics take me 3-5x as long to read as modern ones. See the Guide to Silver Age X-Men.