Writer Chris Claremont
Penciler Paul Smith
Inker Bob Wiacek
Colorist Glynis Wein
Letterer Tom Orzechowski
Cover Dated April 1983
Look at that cover, that may be my second favorite Kitty Pryde cover. I mentioned before about that hair of hers and how wavy, I suppose is the word for that. What would be the real world look of that cover? I’m not sure I’ve ever seen women with that much body to their hair. I’m telling you, it is a weird thing to be fixated on, but there is something about that that I want to see depicted in RL.
The issue starts off with what has to be one of the most famous first pages of all comics. “Professor Xavier is a Jerk!” tell you everything you need to know about both, the young lady and the man in question. It has to also be one of the all time most famous splash pages too! Such a great way to start an issue and look at Kitty’s hair there!
Issue opens with Kitty being mad and kicking the snow about. Illyana is trying her best to be a good friend. Since the X-Men have come back to Earth, and that Xavier has created the New Mutants group, he wants Kitty to be on the younger junior team. This of course, angers Kitty as she has proven herself time and time again that she has earned her spot on the X-Men. Xavier is only looking out for her, wanting her to have interaction with fellow teenagers her own age.
Kitty goes on about how his decision is not fair. Paul Smith draws Illyana with such a look that when she finally speaks, you can tell that she waited until Kitty repeated it for the ninth time. Illyana finally tells Kitty that it isn’t as unfair as spending half of your life inside of Limbo and all that comes with Limbo. This shuts Kitty up and now she realizes that her problems are not real problems.
If Xavier’s school was a real school, or if I was running it, Kitty would be in classes with the New Mutants, and when the X-Men went off on a mission, Kitty would be allowed to go on said mission. Since the New Mutants are never suppose to go on missions, though those rascals find ways to leave the mansion all of the time, it wouldn’t be a good title if it was only classroom time all the time, this shouldn’t be a problem. If they did have a mission, Kitty would not go, as she isn’t a New Mutant. She is dressed as one, but that is another issue.
Kitty and Illyana run off as they don’t want to miss the bus to get to Stevie Hunter’s dance class.
The next page, we see a pair of red eyes belonging to a purple face. The narration box indicates that he doesn’t care for the weather, or the prey that is around. This, of course, is Lockheed. The narration box indicates that his luck is about to change.
We cut to Nightcrawler as he is also watching Kitty and Illyana leave. Wolverine is telling him about how he is heading north and west, in Canada, he needs a break. Kurt is quick to state that after their time in space, they all need a vacation.
Logan and Kurt then start talking about how Kitty doesn’t want to be on the New Mutants team. Kurt takes the stance that maybe she shouldn’t be due to only being a teenager and that she should be not having grand adventures but in school where it is safe. Logan, on the other hand, believes that she has chosen this life and is ready for the challenges.
I have seen people use this as showing how Wolverine has flip flopped his position on children soldiers, as this is the reason why he took the stance he did during Schism, that is still running strong in today’s X-Titles. Nowadays, he wants children to be children, but back then, he was all for Kitty being a soldier in Xavier’s army. I believe it was the fact that Oya had to kill people that he took offense too, had to kill people as Cyclops told her to do whatever it was that was necessary to protect her and her fellow students. Plus, it has been decades since this conversation, or at the very least, one decade with Marvel’s sliding time scale.
I like how Wein’s coloring here makes Kurt look soft, they are home so they don’t need to be colored dramatically. Kurt is in a sweater, and Logan is dressed for a weekend in the Canadian wilderness. They are two bros, broing it up. And talking about the virtues of children soldiers, who hasn’t had that conversation with a bro?
We change scenes to Xavier and Lilandra. I like that Lilandra has taken a slight vacation from her duties of Shi’Ar Empress, or at least Empress in Exile, she isn’t trying to head back to her homeworld and take her throne back, she is being a supportive girlfriend. I imagine, in her mind, that she is only taking a month off, and will head back once her beloved is back on his feet. Since Xavier’s old body was destroyed due to the Brood hatchling last issue, he was given a new body with working feet. Unfortunately, his super powerful mind is still set on the fact that his legs are crippled. Xavier is trying his best to make his brain realize that his legs do work but it is coming at a large price. He is sweating and stressing out. You can tell by Smith’s line work that Xavier’s body is fighting every inch. Or is Wiacek responsible for those convolutions?
Xavier collapses to the ground, exhausted. Lilandra runs out from the Danger Room control room, as they were in the Danger Room, as that is where the gymnasium is. She is wearing this blue jumpsuit. I also imagine, for her, that it was an outfit that was around and she put on. She is comfortable with her position and does look good in a blue jumpsuit. Not everyone does.
The two start talking about the future. He wants her to stay with him, as new mutants are appearing more regularly and he is the only one who can guide them. She wants him to come with her, as she has an entire planetary empire to run.
That page ends with a panel of Lockheed, still not amused.
We see the dance class, I really like how Smith draws the ladies here. Three different women, three body types and ages, all dressed correctly for the situation. Stevie tells Kitty that she needs to fight for what she wants.
Storm tries to get back in touch with nature. She was away from Earth too long, and is rejected.
Probably one of the page pages ever, Kitty trying the four ways to convince a man to listen to reason – Logic, Passion, Co-Operation and Flattery. Kitty beats Xavier at chess, talks sternly with him, shows she can phase objects and tells him about how she tells everyone that her professor is handsome, nice and wonderful. Love the fashion choices Smith has Kitty use. She may not be good at costume design but she can pick out an outfit.
Is this the first time Kitty is shown phasing something?
Scott is shown catching up with Lee Forrester – who is growing her hair long. Almost too long. He tells her he is about to go to Alaska with his dad to meet his grandparents for the first time.
Kurt surprises Amanda in a cute scene. I guess this should count as a Christmas issue, as people keep referencing the holiday.
Kitty is studying, when the Rasputins knock on her window. I like how it is shown that Kitty phases through the wall instead of opening the window.
Before she can head out, she notes an intruder in the basement. She dons her uniform, noting that it use to be her special outfit but now it is the New Mutants outfit.
Xavier is going to monitor Kitty as she checks out the basement. She notices that wires have been chewed. She is startled by a light.
Don’t worry, it is Lockheed! She picks him up, so happy to see him. We get the first time he is wrapped around her neck.
Then Sidrain Hunters attack them. She takes a blast, knocking out her powers. She does this awesome kick, this whole sequence is very well choreographed.
Lockheed helps out, his flame hurts the hunter. She takes it out, only to get blasted a second time. She calls him Dragon in battle, but then thinks of him as Lockheed. Xavier wonders who she is referring too.
Before Kitty can get hit a third time, Colossus steps in and defeats the adult hunters. Kitty notices Lockheed is missing.
Turns out the little guy found the nest and ate all of future threats.
Xavier reveals he can’t read Lockheed’s mind. Also, that Kitty will stay as an X-Man, she is on probation.
Issue ends in Alaska with Scott meeting Madelyne Pryor – in her first appearance!
There is a bonus oage of horrible and unused costume designs for Kitty.