Writer Christos Gage
Penciler Tom Grummett
Inkers Cory Hamscher and Rick Ketcham
Colorist Chris Sotomayor
Letterer VC’s Joe Caramagna
Cover Dated December 2012
Cover by Giuseppe Camuncoli & Jim Charalampidis
Homage cover to Uncanny X-Men 100
We are kicking Ant-Man Month right!
Jean Grey School v Avengers Academy!
This website has the comic if you want to follow along!
Though the images are quite small. So I had to use the ones below from other sources. The trick to that website is to click the image, zoom in to read it and click the next button.
The students of the Avengers Academy are – Finesse, Hazmat, Lightspeed, Mettle, Reptil, Striker and Veil. The teaching staff are – White Tiger, X23, Hawkeye, Jocasta, Quicksilver, Tigra and Giant Man.
There is a subplot with X23, so this is what happened in the previous issue. Jeremy Briggs atempted to take away superpowers. He started with these students. All but Veil decided to regain their powers. Which is impressive as this title started during Norman Osborn’s Dark Reign. He figured these students would be the next great super villains. During the Briggs battle, the team was down. While X23 was groggy, Finesse used her extended claws to kill Briggs. X23 came around, saw the blood and figured her killer instincts kicked in. Finesse was cool with that and went with it.
Also, Lightspeed is Julie Power, all grown up! Well, at least, a teenager. She doesn’t get much play in this issue so I wanted to point that out.
Issue opens with Striker and Veil talking about the upcoming visitors from the Jean Grey School. Striker is concern that the scars on his face will make him unemployable in Hollywood, his face is his career. Mettle comes in and says the Jean Grey School is talking smack already and Striker comes out as he was opening up.
Mar Vell Field. Giant Man is explaining the situation. The two schools are going to have a tag football game. There will be no tackling, also the faculty will be players as well. Oh, and powers are allowed.
White Tiger throws some smack talk about, Doop counters, she doesn’t know what he said but it seems highly inappropriate. He makes another comment as he floats away. Grummett’s Doop, there is something about it. Maybe its the bumps and the bump hairs, it just seems off model. Could just be the coloring, I bet that is what it is, he’s a paler green.
Wolverine is the one who insisted the faculty play, as he wants to get even with Giant Man from the time he kicked Wolverine out of the plane (at Captain America’s command) back in Avengers vs X-Men 3.
We covered it here :
Gambit sees X23, who he was particular a co-star of her ongoing series that folded up so that she could join this school. Gambit wants to know how she is holding up. She killed the enemy (or so she believes) and she’s done it before so she is dealing with it as she does. Which is just moving on to the next task.
Finesse overhears how troubled X23 is over the situation.
I like how Kitty is only seen in the background of the next few pages. But she is there and the Internet has the images so I’ve included them. Thanks Internet!
Reptil (so that they can copyright it, perhaps?) – who is nothing like his Super Hero Squad persona, wants to talk to Finesse. Reptil has the powers of the past but is also from the future – if I’m understanding this correctly. Apparently he has also reveal to her that they are future lovers but she is dealing with her inner struggle (the best kind!) about coming clean to X23. All he wanted was to get her opinion on a football play by Joe Montana. I believe Finesse has the same powerset that Taskmaster has.
That face Gambit is making!
Gambit wants to give Reptil some advance. Reptil takes a stab at what that advice is going to be – grow his hair long and start talking like Pepe le Pew. It works for Gambit – oddly enough – but no that wasn’t what he was going to say. His advice is a good one, if a lady says she needs space, best to just give her her space. She knows that she is putting the guy in a place where he could become attracted to another person but that’s a chance she’s going to have to take as well.
Nice staging with Finesse walking by Rogue so that Gambit is giving himself that same advice.
Reptil worries that Finesse may realize she doesn’t want to pursue a relationship, and that will suck, but that’s her decision as well.
The game finally gets started! Grummett draws a fantastic Lockheed!
Look how great that sight gag is! Iceman threw ice shards, taking off all of the AA students’ tags and Hawkeye shot arrows taking all of the JGS students’ tags off. Kitty, naturally, throws them both out of the game.
Veil is on the sidelines. Kitty and Lockheed take the time to get to know her. She doesn’t have her powers anymore. For some reason, she still wears all of those bandages. They don’t get into that, so that remains a question.
Veil was, if she hadn’t lost her powers, would have become a ghost in a matter of years. Subject matter that Kitty is all to familiar with. So that’s a fantastic job on Gage’s part to pair these two for a conversation.
Veil is worried about going back to being a loser. Kitty assures her that with all of her life experience, she is nothing like what she use to be. There can be no going back. Kitty tells her to get into the game.
Kitty sees Lyra about to give Quire the beating he deserves and kicks them out of the game.
Kitty really could have done better and not just wore a yellow shirt with a giant X on it, right? I get that the shirt is free and she wants to present, but this is as casual of a situation as it could get and she probably just threw on the first t-shirt she saw.
Quire is excited to learn that the planet Lyra comes from, they make slaves of their men. She will crush him, and he wants her too. Oh to be seventeen again.
While they were organizing this game, someone must have told Kitty about Veil’s circumstances.
The game picks up again and Rockslide gives Mettle a bit of a heart attack by making him believe he almost killed Rockslide. Rockslide just laughs at what he believes was a good gag.
Mettle runs off and Hazmat, his would be girlfriend, tells Rockslide off. Mettle is dealing with PTSD (from killing a Nazi, something I believe I could handle with no ill effects) and doesn’t need additional trauma being added to his already full plate. Hazmat attempts to kick Rockslide’s rocky balls but he doesn’t have any. Even if he did, he is made of rocks, and that would have hurt Hazmat regardless. Plus, he’s made of sharp rocks, she is risking tearing her radiation suits, thus risking exposing all of the people on the field to radiation poisoning. Hence, why Osborn thought she would make an amazing villain.
Mettle and Rockslide get to talking. Turns out, Mettle does have a pair down there. When everyone didn’t have their powers, Mettle and Hazmat didn’t waste the moment and were able to be physical. Now that they have their powers, there is a certain level of awkwardness, as they can no longer be physical.
Rockslide tells him to make it work, as a guy who doesn’t have private parts down there, at least Mettle has something and should be thankful. I’m not exactly sure what Mettle’s situation is. Why does he have that red skeleton?
The AA students want Striker to guard against Anole. Anole knows fully well why they are doing this. Anole and Striker are the only homosexuals (that are out) on the field. The AA students are just trying to hook a guy up. Anole use to get the same thing over at the JGS. They mean well and eventually they will learn what your time is. Those are good friends.
Striker is still new to being out, it seems. Striker, who is also an actor, is worried no one will look at him, romantically, again. Anole tells him that he has a normal arm, a Popeye arm, green skin and scales. He goes out with a slew of dudes, both flatscanners and mutants. Striker confesses that he wouldn’t give himself a second look, and Anole gives the awesome advice of – strive for someone better than you.
Striker doesn’t catch the ball and Anole intercepts. Striker is regulated to guarding against Glob Herman. That’s pretty low.
Giant Man throws the football to Reptil, it succeeds. Good hussle out there, Rogue!
Giant Man reverts to Regular Man height, he is having fun. Just then, Wolverine pounces on him, from behind! Now the two of them are even steven.
Jocasta, who is also kicking people off the field, ejects both of them. Wolverine states it is worth it. Pym, not letting a moment pass, asks if they have any more grief amongst them.
Tigra doesn’t want to hash anything out, and attacks Wolverine. Somehow, Pym is able to date Tigra. How did that happened? That guy got both Wasp and Tigra, there must be something about him. He just has the touch.
Tigra calls Wolverine a “aboot-saying troll” that’s pretty funny!
Jocasta starts charging her tasers. Which she does zap the two of them. Tigra has an afro and Wolverine says it was worth it. I like how he’s just game for small insignificant fights. Nice effect having Tigra’s tail being fluffy too, good follow through.
Lightspeed, who is mostly just seen in backgrounds up to this point, wants Quicksilver to play. He’s more of a fan of the European futbol, which makes sense.
Warbird, takes this opportunity to mock Quicksilver. This was during the time when Black Bolt and the Inhumans were the heads of the Kree Empire. Which makes Crystal a Kree Princess. Which also makes sense as the Inhumans are an offshoot of the Kree.
Quicksilver isn’t that fond of the Shi’ar, who is at this point?
Quicksilver wants to punch Warbird, which seems highly inappropriate but she wants him to, so there’s that.
Very fun running gag of Jocasta’s so readiness to charge tasers.
Giant Man wants to make sure Wolverine and him are square. Wolverine is glad a nerd like him can throw a decent party. Now that no faculty members are in the game, Wolverine tells everybody to switch up. The game is no longer school v school.
Warbird follows up with Quicksilver, he is no coward. She continues to tell him that his divorce is the joke of the galaxy. Then we get the most real and honest character moment I believe Quicksilver has had in a while. Warbird wonders why he didn’t just kill his bride for her betrayal. (Which is an question to pose to someone) He didn’t because he was a horrible husband and worst father. Luna, his daughter, doesn’t even want to talk to him. Which is why he is teaching at a school, to try to be a better person.
Quicksilver assumes that this display of weakness is a complete turn off to Warbird. On the contrary, she is all riled up and makes out with him.
Back to the game. X23 tackles Rockslide and gets cut up in the process. He tells her how silly that was, as all she had to do is tear his flag off. As she walks away, Rockslide makes an aside to Glob Herman, he misses her sports bra era. Now she has the uniform that is barely seen on the cover and in the images above.
Finesse finally comes clean with X23. Naturally, X23 takes huge offense to being used as a weapon, that’s what she was made to be and what she is fighting so hard to no longer be. Though she is often the X-Men’s weapon, especially during her X-Force days, but that’s a different deal as she was choosing to be a weapon – I guess?
X23 tells Finesse that she’s killed everybody who has ever made her into a weapon, so now she is on notice.
Kitty talks to Jocasta about how she left the Academy. Which is odd, as she is right here on the field. She’s a robot, so that makes sense that she can’t even do that right.
Jocasta is having a philosophical problem with the Academy, which Kitty can relate to as the X-Men are dealing with their own Schism. Jocasta isn’t sure their school is the right idea for the students, it may be doing more harm than good.
Jocasta gives Mettle a final warning, he doesn’t want to be tased. Him rassling with Blob makes sense, they seem to be in the same powerset / situation, where their bodies are either chrome or pink glob.
The team has gone through some hard times, as of late. Also, Jocasta doesn’t like how they don’t have a distinct uniform.
Pym, like a total creep, was on his way to the ladies, in ant form, and overheard the conversation. Is that really the fastest mode of transportation, for him? He does realize the situation and tries to explain away the creepiness but it still lingers there. He just wanted to know if they wanted anything from the grill.
Kitty fully understands what it is like to be young and on a superhero team. She was only 14 when she was on the X-Men and she saw a slew of things she shouldn’t have. She didn’t become jaded though, as she was part of a legendary team.
Iceman overhears the uniform conversation. The X-Men had a team uniform until they graduated and received individual costumes.
Jocasta is nice enough to not call Iceman an idiot but politely tells him that the AA students already have individual uniforms.
This was during the time when Iceman and Shadowcat were dating. Kitty references her roller skate outfit, that she made herself, and Iceman has an image of it to show. I wish Grummett took the time to redraw it here, as that would have been fun.
Pym wants to show the students that they have accomplished something. He can’t make them full Avengers yet but they need something. He comments on how new uniforms always made Wasp feel better. Is it odd that he calls her, Janet? I think of her as either Wasp or Jan.
Jocasta points out that new uniforms may not be the solution.
Hazmat wants to know what the score is but the adults are just gabbing and generally having a good time.
Giant Man pulls a pretty good prank by dousing Wolverine’s hamburger with Pym Particles and it grows to cartoonish size. He could really be solving world hunger with that trick.
Issue ends with Mettle wanting this to become a tradition. It doesn’t.
This was a fun issue.
Maybe I will learn more when I get my two issues of their series off of my Wishlist. Issue 3, for the Women of Marvel variant – which will probably have some answers. Issue 32, I also want, as Magik appears in it as it is a AvX crossover tie-in.
Thanks to these websites for the images :