CSBG’s 50 Greatest X-Family Stories

Brian Cronin has done it again and has completed another list!


I end this countdown at 4/10 of my votes, but I knew I was throwing votes away.  Once I see people are keeping track, I always think I should try harder on these lists but I also just want to see my favorites rank.  I’ll probably go forward making my 8, 9, 10 slots be what I imagine are going to be on the list and that gives me seven slots for my own choices.

50. “The Good and the Famous”      X-Statix 21 – 25
X-Statix vs Avengers, I did not read this

49. “Days of Future Yet to Come”   Excalibur 66 – 67
Alan Davis and Mark Farmers’ final Excalibur story.  The best follow up on the Days of Future Past story and we finally found out what happen to Kate Pryde and we get the origins of Widget.  Battle of the Atom will not hint about this story at all, I can only imagine.  This was my first entry onto the list.

48. “Road Trip”        X-Force Volume One 71 – 75
I read this back in the day, remember liking it mostly as it was a reunion of New Mutants and they were a team of young mutants not looking for fights every issue

47. “A World Apart”            Exiles 8 – 10
I didn’t start following Exiles until a little later when they had an alternate Illyana joint the team.

46. “Renewal”           Marvel Graphic Novel 4
New Mutants’ origin story!

45. “Good Omens”   X-Statix 1 – 5
I didn’t read any of the X-Statix stories but I know they got good buzz

44. “Multiple Issues”            X-Factor Volume Two 14 – 17
I read the second volume of X-Factor for quite some time before dropping it, the first 25 issues were all very good

43. “Longshot”         Longshot 1 – 6
Have not read this, Longshot really isn’t in my wheelhouse

42. “Pawns of the White Queen”     New Mutants Volume One 38 – 40
Such an amazing story, the only good thing to come out of Secret Wars II.  Magik is in this storyline as well, so I own all of these issues.

41. “Angels and Demons”    X-Force Volume Two 1 – 6
I may have read this opening arc but its Kyle/Yost so it has to be good

40. “Judgment War”           X-Factor Volume One 43 – 50
Have not read it, Paul Smith art, so I should get around to it someday.  Also have to give Leave It To Chance a try too if I can ever find it.

39. “The Open Hand, The Closed Fist”        X-Force Volume One 19
From the cover, I know that I owned it at some point but couldn’t remember ever actually reading it.  I was probably just confused by all the new characters

38. “Old Man Logan”           Wolverine Volume Three 66 – 72, Wolverine: Old Man Logan Giant-Sized 1
I only own issue 70 of this.  That is the issue where you find out why Logan is no longer Wolverine.  Pretty amazing story that I’m surprised hasn’t happen before.  Well, it couldn’t because of the reason.

37. “Multiple Problems”       X-Factor Volume One 71 – 75
This is the story that gave us Peter David on the original X-Factor and changed the title from the  Original Five to a new group of mutants.

36. “The Shiva Scenario”      Wolverine Volume One 48 – 50
I only own issue 50, which has a pretty cool enhance cover.  This storyline introduced the concept of “false memories” into the Wolverine mythos.

35. “Slumber Party!”             New Mutants Volume One 21
Such a great done in one story and with Warlock’s introduction the main cast of New Mutants is complete!  I own this one as well.

34. “Re-X-aminations”         X-Factor Volume Two 13
I’m sure I bought this one as, like everybody, I enjoyed the original story.

33. “Magneto Testament”     X-Men: Magneto Testament 1 – 5
Heard so many amazing reviews for this and I know it was well researched but I’m not sure I could read it.

32. “The Black Sword Saga”            Wolverine Volume One 1 – 3
Wolverine’s opening arc on his very first ongoing.  I only own the first issue of these three.

31. “The Quest for Magik”   New X-Men 38 – 41
Of course, I own all of these, we got Magik back with this story!

30. “The Sword is Drawn”   Excalibur: The Sword is Drawn, Excalibur 1 – 2
I definitely own these and Claremont and Davis before Cross Time Caper started, you can’t go wrong!

29. “Final Execution”           Uncanny X-Force Volume One 25 – 35
I own issues 25, 26, 27, 30 and 31, those issues were pretty intense

28. The Adventures of Cyclops and Phoenix 1 – 4
I’ve only ever read reviews for this story, but its essentially Cyclops raising his son in the future with Jean

27. “The Necrom Saga”        Excalibur 42 – 50
Alan Davis return to the title with Mark Farmer and after cleaning up the mess others made, they created this storyline that is pretty fun and introduced new aspects of the Phoenix mythos, that of course was completely ignored later. Like most things that happen in Excalibur, other writers could not be bothered to read even recaps of this series.  I own all of these issues.

26. Generation Next 1 – 4
This was my second entry into the list.  When I think of Age of Apocalypse, I think of Generation Next.  By far the best thing about AoA.  Bachalo was starting his height with this and he is still amazing today.  This is probably my favorite Alternate Kitty, or at least number two behind Ultimate Kitty but in four issues, you really get a bunch of her character.  Also get to see her with an Illyana who never went to Limbo too.  I definitely own all of these.

25. “24 Hours”          Wolverine Volume One 10
The story that introduced Sabretooth fighting Wolverine on Logan’s birthday, every year.  Works better as a previous story as you can’t have Sabretooth fighting him every four years nowadays.

24. “Multiple Choice”           Madrox 1 – 5
With how much I enjoyed the second volume of X-Factor, you would think I would have read this but never got around to it.

23. “We Were Only Foolin’”            New Mutants Volume One 45
Now this story I also own.  Kitty does this amazing speech in this issue.  It is a story that more people should be exposed too.

22. “Magik” Uncanny X-Men 160 / Storm and Illyana: Magik 1 – 4
I thought maybe this story wouldn’t count as 160 was on the other list, it was ranked at 47 so it is ranked higher on this list, which is better overall.  I definitely own these issues.

21. “Third Genesis” Generation X 1 – 3
I definitely read these back in the day, but it wasn’t until this list when I realized the high hopes they had for this team and the tile with the title of this storyline.  Second Genesis, of course, is the title to All New All Different’s first appearance in Giant Size X-Men 1.  Real shame that most of the cast is dead now with Jubilee, M and Emma being the only survivors, also Husk is around still.

20. “Why Do We Do the Things We Do?” New Mutants Annual 2 / X-Men Annual 10
I own both of these and it was nice seeing why this cast could New Mutants could be the next X-Men.

19. “Origin” Wolverine: The Origin 1 – 6
I really liked the third issue of this series, seems to be the only one you would have to read.  I read that they are going to make a sequel to it, which I have no interest in as I rather not read six issues of naked Logan running around the Canadian wilderness.  It probably won’t be that at all.

18. “Endgame”         X-Factor Volume One 65 – 68
I have only read reviews and recaps of this story, which is baby Nathan being thrown into the future.

17. “Soulwar”           New Mutants Volume One 26 – 28
I only own issue 28 of this, the Legion origin story.

16. “Final Chapter”   X-Force Volume One 125 – 129
Should go back and read this if I ever want more Allred, which I typically do.

15. “Enemy of the State”      Wolverine Volume Three 20 – 31
This brings me to my third entry on the list.  I own issues 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 30 and 31.  The issue numbers should read as Enemy of the State / Agent of SHIELD or Mark Millar’s first Wolverine story.  This would have made an awesome movie back when FOX owned the Daredevil movie rights as now they can only do the Fantastic Four portions.  Though this would never be a PG-13 movie so it is all for the best.

14. “The Longest Night”      X-Factor Volume Two 1 – 6
I remember liking seeing the team come together in this.

13. “Chilhood’s End”           New X-Men 20 – 31
I own issues 21, 23, 24, 26 and 31 of this.  Kyle and Yost first foray onto this title introduced killing off students in big and crazy ways.

12. Kitty Pryde and Wolverine 1 – 6
This was my final entry on the list, 4/10, not horrible.  I own these of course.  I adore this miniseries so much.  It annoys me when writers want to go back to the essence of Kitty and they go further back than this storyline as this changed Kitty Pryde, for the better.

11. “Time and a Half/Overtime”       X-Factor Volume Two 39 – 50
I want to read this as I like the concept of Ruby Summers.

10. “New Beginning”           X-Force Volume One 116 – 120
I read this when it first came out and I was not ready for the break from the norm that this story was.

9 “Fall of the Mutants”         X-Factor Volume One 24 – 26
I have only read recaps of this story, we gain Archangel in this, thus forever changing Warren’s character.

8 “The Cross-Time Caper”    Excalibur 12 – 24
I own all of these.  Really surprised that people voted for this, it is issues 12 through 24 but there is at least two fill ins that do not follow that story at all.  It is so long and we lose Alan Davis at some point in it.  What annoys me about this is that people wave off Excalibur because when they think of this title, they think of Cross Time and lose all interest.  It is pretty fun and we get some great character work but of its 125 issues, it is barely even ten percent of the title.  People should really read beyond this arc.

7 “The Apocalypse Solution”           Uncanny X-Force Volume One 1 – 4
I should read this as I really liked the last arc of this title and it all starts with these.

6. “Home is Where the Heart Is”      New Mutants Special Edition 1 / X-Men Annual 9
New Mutants in Asgard, it was always a good idea until it became one of the three go to story ideas, along with Legion and Demon Bear.

5. “Weapon X”         Marvel Comics Presents 72 – 84
I couldn’t remember if I read this for sure or just plenty of recaps and reviews but I’m pretty sure I have.  Amazing it took this long before we got that crucial aspect of Wolverine’s history.

4. “The Dark Angel Saga”    Uncanny X-Force  Volume One 8, 10-18
I should read this as I was super curious as to what happen to Warren to get him to his current “clean slate” persona.  It took me to recently release due to a thread on the X-Books’ forums to realize that this has the same title as the Dark Phoenix Saga, in that they are both The Dark __________ Saga with insert the character’s name in the line provided.  Surprised there has not been like twenty of those.  Hopefully the next one is at least ten years away.

3. “The Demon Bear Saga”   New Mutants Volume One 18-20
I own these and I knew this was going to be on this list, I thought it would be ranked at number two.  Dani Moonstar’s origins are revealed and we get Sharon and Tom Corsi (two humans) added to the supporting cast as supporting crew members.  Such an amazingly drawn story by Bill Sienkiewicz written by legend Chris Claremont.

2. “X-Aminations”    X-Factor Volume One 87
When I was first getting into the X-Men and buying a bunch of back issues, I made sure this was one of those issues.  It was practically legend by the time it was first printed.  Quicksilver became instantly likeable after this too.

1. Wolverine 1 – 4
Now this, I knew for sure was going to be number one.  I know some people wanted Wolverine to have his own split list, but if this was not the ranked at number one, this entire list would need an asterisk next to it.  This was the first X-Miniseries and it the set for all else to come.  I only own the fourth issue as that is the one that leads into the Japanese Adventure over in Uncanny X-Men.

. . .

So of the list, I own out right, 15 of the stories.  I own seven practically, making a total of 21 of the 50, that isn’t as bad as I thought it would be.

I knew Kitty wasn’t going to be on the list too much but glad she and Illyana are represented.  I knew that Illyana was going to be on the list as besides the Marvel Graphic Novel, she is there for all of the important New Mutants stories.

The list breaks down as:

Excalibur       4 stories

Exiles                        1 story

Generation Next       1 Story

Generation X            1 story

Solo Heroes   4 stories (Longshot / Magik / Cyclops & Jean / Kitty)

New Mutants            7 stories

New X-Men 2 stories

Wolverine      8 stories

X-Factor (1st)            3 stories (Original Five)

X-Factor (2nd)            3 stories (Havok’s Team)

X-Factor (3rd)            3 stories (Madox’s Team)

X-Force (1st)  2 stories

X-Force (2nd) 2 stories (Wolverine’s First Team)

X-Force (3rd) 3 stories (Wolverine’s Uncanny Team)

X-Statix        4 stories

Wolverine has the most at 8 but the New Mutants are close with 7.  Which is only 15 entries so that works out the way I thought it would be.

I just want to say thanks again to Brian Cronin as I can only imagine this takes so much work to get everything done.  Took me like two hours to do this entire post so it must take him days.

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About John Klein III

I live in Helena, Montana with my beautiful wife, who is only slightly okay with my comic book reading ways but I love the heck out of that lady and adore that she lets me have this little hobby of mine. On December 16, 2013, we welcomed our son, Walker Dennis into the world and we couldn't be happier!
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