Writer Walt Simonson
Penciler Jackson Gauice
Inker Geof Isherwood
Colorist Ricahrd Rasche
Letterer Pat Brosseau
Cover Date 1990
Days of Future Present Part One of Four
The first sequel to Days of Future Past. See what they did there with the sequel title? Pretty clever.
It took them ten years to revisit DoFP, but that makes sense as one usually celebrates the tenth anniversary before anything else. Well, maybe the one year anniversary and the fifth year anniversary but still. Ten is saying something.
Kitty doesn’t show up in this issue, nor does Kate. Meggan and Rachel do, which is cool and Meggan mentions, by name, Excalibur – and I’m apparently collecting all appearances of that. I was also collecting most appearances of the DoFP universe, that is apparently been labeled, Earth-811. The only other comic I can think of that I own just because the team, Excalibur, is mentioned is Avengers 319, so that’s something to look forward too.
I’m missing part four of this crossover and I own parts two and three but while revisiting my comic collection for this blog, I’m taking a hard look at some of these issues as for some reason, I’m keeping issues that I thought were Kitty related and rereading them now, I think I may have been mislead by a website or two. I know I’ve thrown three comics out of my collection since starting the blog. So I can’t guarantee I will be doing the other two parts at this moment. I can tell you that Kitty does show up in Part Four (Uncanny X-Men Annual 14) – or maybe in one of the features of the annual _ so it is on my Wishlist.
Skimming both comicbookdb, comics.org and the Marvel Database – it looks like parts two and three don’t contain Kitty or Kate references at all.
Part Two is New Mutants Annual 6 and Part Three is X-Factor Annual 5. One would think that in the bonus section, Magik would at least make an appearance in the New Mutants Annual. These two covers infamously have the wrong parts on them. X-Factor’s cover states it is part two and New Mutants’ states it is part three but it really is the other way around.
I had forgotten how New Mutants Annual 6 has an early tease of a glimpse into the future and that has an adult Magik present so I’m keeping New Mutants Annual 6, if not for Part Two of this story, at least, for the two page spread.
X-Factor Annual 5 doesn’t mention Kitty nor Kate Pryde or Excalibur so I am not reviewing that issue at all. So this is the only review for this storyline proper.
This issue is also the very first appearance of Ahab, the man who turned Rachel into a mutant hunting Hound. Also, the future version of Rory Campbell.
If I haven’t mentioned this before, Walt Simonson is one of my favorite Fantastic Four writers. He gave us the New Fantastic Four, after all. I would rank Mark Waid as my all time favorite, for sure but Simonson and Claremont would be in my top three.
So onto the issue itself.
But first, that cover. For whatever reason, Ahab’s chestplate always looks like a book to me with the Fantastic Four are locked inside of. My eyes always go straight to the middle of it. Now, I can’t stop seeing it.
Guice’s style is really realistic. Not photo realistic but I can tell that if he had a larger color pallet, it would look very differently today than it did 24 years ago. Characters are drawn almost lifelike.
The issue opens with the Fantastic Four coming back from a picnic they had up at Bear Mountain Park. Turns out Sue makes a mean egg salad sandwich. Which I love (good) egg salad but my wife hates eggs so it is like a guilty pleasure when I get to sneak a sandwich from a restaurant.
As they approach their home, the Four Freedoms Plaza, they see that the old Baxter Building in its place. They wonder who could have switched the two buildings. I like how Reed’s initial reaction is to do all of these scans and figure it out. Sue names some opponents who could have done it.
The scans reveal that it is in fact the old Baxter Building. They go inside and see their old doorman who has retired but he doesn’t look a day older than when the Baxter Building was still standing. Sue’s belt can still activate the elevator – just like Wolverine’s belt from Days of Future Past.
Reed is impressed, whoever did this, clearly has unlimited power as the entire building, both outside with weather stains and the technology from inside – are exact replicas.
They come across the past Fantastic Four, which I like how since then the team has gotten new costumes. So the old team is in their nearly all blue uniforms with their gloves and boots are only slightly darker than their shirts and pants. So the current Fantastic Four is wearing blue pants/shirts with white boots and gloves that I first knew as their uniform.
Also the current Fantastic Four are – Reed Richards, Invisible Woman, Human Torch, Human Ben Grimm and She-Thing with Franklin Richards who may be eight or so. Now that I have Walker, I’ll be better with guessing kids’ ages but for now, he seems pretty young. Franklin, of course, is always hard to gauge how old he is and how much time has passed. Him and Kitty Pryde are the two who age but is complicated with the Marvel sliding time scale.
So there is a quick fight. It looks like the current Fantastic Four lets the past ones win, so that they can figure out what the next step is. I’m not sure, this is the first of three instances that it feels like we are missing a page but the handy page numbers on the bottom indicates we are not.
I like how both Reeds think to themselves, now we’ll get to the bottom of this.
Past Reed believes that these older versions are either from the future or an alternate timeline. Our Reed states there is a third option, that they are from the past. Past Reed doesn’t think that should be an option.
Sue sees an adult Franklin. He freaks out as they shouldn’t be there. Our Sue tries to talk some sense into him by telling him that these past versions and the old building are the dream and the present day Fantastic Four are the reality. Making him think this makes adult Franklin think of death and he continues to freak out. This, naturally, scares child Franklin. Ooof, this getting to be a hassle with the past, present and future versions of characters.
Adult Franklin shouts about how he remembers too much and flies through the side of the building, putting up a forcefield and restoring the Four Freedoms Plaza.
The second instance of a missing page is when Reed states that he was trying to goad his adult son but didn’t think he would have such an aggressive reaction. But it was Sue who had the only dialogue with adult Franklin so why is Reed trying to take the credit?
Cut to Meggan and Rachel on the west coast of Britain, and the reason I own this issue. I guess I am keeping it. Meggan likes being part of Excalibur and she names Kurt but she really likes these times where they can relax. Meggan is drawn like I’ve never seen her drawn, pretty realistic. I like Excalibur’s art teams but they have that comic book / clean cartoon style and Guice here is trying a more adult art style. I’m not sure if that’s the best way to describe it but its close.
Meggan asks Rachel about the future timeline she is from. Rachel doesn’t recall that much, her memory is scrambled or like Swiss cheese, if you would. Rachel claims it is like feeling jet-lag. Meggan counters with time-lag. Which, as much as I love Meggan, I’m not sure if she’s capable of making that joke or correction. I had to look to see which issue of Excalibur we were on during 1990. Excalibur issues 18 through 32. She might have been capable of it.
I wonder why of all the members of Excalibur, why Meggan was chosen to be the friend in this scene. The two of them do have a friendly connection. Was it that Guice wanted to draw the ‘hot’ ladies? I know later in Excalibur, the two of them have adventures together, one I recall is when Rachel went with Meggan as Meggan investigates her origins.
Rachel then gets a headache and flies off, telling Meggan that she is being summoned.
Which now works as a time to mention this, Days of Future Past Franklin died in that storyline, so quickly. When can this Franklin even come from, during the early days of the future timeline?
Back in New York City. Forge and Banshee, I guess they are friends?, are walking around the city. Adult Franklin sees them, and comments on how happy he is. Franklin then notices that they are much younger than they should be, also that they are dead when he comes from. Franklin tells them that they are his old teachers. Realizing that they are not right, he flies off even more upset.
I suppose at this point, Franklin’s potential is known that he is essentially a god with unlimited powers over his reality. Known to at least his family. So seeing an adult Franklin who is emotionally unstable must be unsettling for all involved.
Banshee and Forge race over to Four Freedoms Plaza and notice the forcefield surrounding the building.
Between the then and the now and the later then. Ahab awakens. The time has come that he is needed. I guess he is a type of time police, maybe?
Over at the Power Pack home. The Power children are playing hide and seek with an adult Franklin. It could be played for creeps but it doesn’t go there. Their father comes home and at first, is shock to see an adult version of his children’s friend but Franklin makes him see him as a child. So weird.
Sue is trying to sooth her young son. He doesn’t like the idea of a crazy adult version of himself running around. Reed knows that Franklin is the key to this. So he unlocks the mental blocks that hold Franklin’s mutant abilities in place.
Ahab’s forces are now in the present day as they attack the building. They are there for Franklin. They scan Sue, they have the nerve to have her identified as, producer of mutant offspring, so she needs to be eliminated.
Oh, how you would think the Fantastic Four would do more for mutant relations, instead they stay clear of it.
Reed is slightly impress with these Time Sentinels but no one threatens his wife and child and starts fighting back. This is a Reed I can get behind.
Once the fight is over, it doesn’t last long, Forge and Banshee join the team. Sue gets a fun line about the robots going on the offensive and she says, you’ve been plenty of offensive already. Sue is by far my favorite of the four.
Susan figures out adult Franklin’s motivations. He is clearly going back to when he was the happiest, which is when you are a child. Which, I’m not sure about that exactly. But I’m not going to argue with Sue. Plus, it is true for Franklin as his future is horrible.
Sue asks Franklin if he could be anywhere besides with his family, where would he be. He answers with, with his friends the Powers. So that’s where the united heroes are heading next.
Dr. Power answers his door, even though Adult Franklin doesn’t want him too. Poor Dr. Power, who doesn’t know the secret about his children, is surprised to see two Franklins. They convince adult Franklin to come with them.
While flying back, adult Franklin sees a building that shouldn’t be there and makes it disappear. The building he sees is actually X-Factor’s mobile base, Ship.
I like how Human Torch has the though that someone clearly, in the future, is going to hurt his nephew and he is being driven angry over that fact.
The third instance is Ben’s comment about not seeing Reed being this obsessed in years. I’m sure there was a time cut and I just didn’t realize it or something. They are back at their home. Reed and Forge are creating a new type of scanner. They are looking for Franklin’s energy signature. They get two locations, one to the north and one downtown.
Sharon, the She-Thing, asks Ben if adult Franklin could really be Franklin grown up and what could have possibly happened to him. Issue ends with the teams splitting up and Ben telling Sharon that by the time they figure it out, they will wish they hadn’t.
There two other stories in this issue but they don’t relate tot his main story.
This issue isn’t as bad as I remembered it, it could be the other two chapters I’m thinking of that get crazy out of sorts.