Powers Of X #6
The last remaining secret is revealed in Powers Of X #6, by writer Jonathan Hickman, artists R.B. Silva and Pepe Larraz, colorists Marte Gracia and David Curiel, and letterer Clayton Cowles. Hickman wraps up a lot of the dangling plot threads he’s set up over these two series that are one.
The book begins with the first time Moira and Xavier met, and she reveals to him her secret. From there, it goes to X-Men Year One Thousand, where the Librarian goes to the Preserve to speak to two of its prisoners- Moira and Wolverine. The Librarian explains what is about to happen with the Phalanx and how he won’t allow Moira to die with the rest of the planet, so she can’t undo the whole timeline… but he underestimates how fast Wolverine is. Wolverine kills him and then kills Moira, undoing the entire thing. The story jumps back to Year Zero, with Xavier reacting to what Moira has shown him- mutants always lose. The two of them vow to make things different this time. In the present, X-Men Year Ten, Xavier, and Magneto go to Moira’s No-Place and explain to her the composition of Krakoa’s government and the price they had to pay to get certain members on board. Afterward, Xavier and Magneto look at all they built and prepare for the challenges of the future.
This issue finally reveals the biggest secret of HoX and PoX and ties the whole far future storyline into everything else. It’s a bit of surprise that Hickman is giving up this mystery already, but then again, it can be said that these two books have been about Moira and her secrets are just as important as anything else in the books. Making the Phalanx storyline fit into everything was also needed, and this way worked the best.
One of the better moments in the book is Xavier’s reaction to Moira’s lives. The realization that mutants always lose and that his dream is always a failure rattles him to his core, but Xavier immediately starts trying to find a way around the whole thing. Xavier is a good man, and he wants to see the best in the world. Moira wants to break him of this. Her lives have shown her that failure is inevitable, and it has hardened her. There’s a section in the book where it shows Moira’s journals about Xavier and Magneto and the dynamic between the three of them. Moira is engineering events to fit her own plans, and it’s all vaguely sinister.
The art by R.B. Silva and Pepe Larraz is excellent as usual. The best panel in the book is when Wolverine kills Moira. Everything in the foreground is in shadow, and behind them, the sun is rising, shining between them. It’s a perfect visual representation of what this moment represents. The present is in shadows, dark and deadly. The sun shines through, though, expressing the hope that Moira’s powers can make things better. The image feels like the series in microcosm, and it’s brilliant.
Powers of X #6 closes out the beginning of Hickman’s run with some pleasant surprises. This issue rehashes a few scenes that readers have already seen but adds enough background info to the whole thing to give those events context. Hickman is a master craftsman, and this issue shows it. The art team does a great job once again, taking Hickman’s script and bringing it to life. Powers Of X has always felt like a supplementary book, and this issue certainly has that feel, but it adds just enough to the overarching narrative of both books to make it unique. There are some great scenes in this book that make it worth the price of admission. Readers are all like Moira in this life- we’ve seen the horrors of what came before, but the future is wide open.