Lets Talk About Powers Of X #4- SPOILERS
Hi, I'm David Harth, and we're going to talk about Powers Of X #4. Shocker, right? It's not like we haven't been meeting here to talk about Hickman's X books for weeks now.
I'm not very good at being comical. Even though I write about comics.
Okay, I'll stop now.
So, let's talk about the issue. First off, the Bar Sinister stuff. Xavier and Magneto convince the mutant version of Mister Sinister, the one we'll see in our future as the main Mister Sinister to keep a giant genetic library of all mutant DNA. First off, I'm not sure if we've ever seen multiple versions of Mister Sinister before, but it makes sense given that Sinister is all about genetic tinkering and it makes sense he would tinker with himself in multiple configurations. That only one Mister Sinister is a mutant is rather novel, not something readers would expect, but that he wasn't always the one in charge is another little change that I doubt most saw coming. Since Nathaniel Essex has always been about genetics, you'd expect him to have inserted the X-gene into himself and his experiments way earlier.
However, the most intriguing part is that Xavier and Magneto convinced him to keep a library of mutant genetics and then Xavier mindwiped him, keeping him from knowing why he was doing it or what it was for. Now, why this is interesting is because of how it plays into one of the many theories about the books going around, the "Krakoan pod people" theory. I've talked about it here before, but here's a primer- the reason why so many dead mutants have come back to life is that Krakoa can grow new versions of them, much like it can grow plants that make drugs for humans and have other effects for mutants. These pod people wouldn't have their memories, but Xavier, being the most powerful telepath in the world, could have some way of downloading their memories into these new bodies (possibly his new Cerebro inspired helmet). That's the gist of it.
Now, it isn't the only theory to explain the dead characters coming back, but it makes sense, and one would need a genetic library to make it work. Which is where Sinister would come into play. As revealed by maps of the island in previous issues, Sinister does have his own place on Krakoa. At some point, Xavier must have let him know why he's keeping the library and brought him to the island. Now, there could always be another reason for all of this. Hickman isn't usually one to make things so easy to figure out. This could very well be a red herring, but it makes so much sense to the pod people theory. That would, however, make it a great red herring. Honestly, I hope it's not the pod people thing, but that's just me. I'm Team Moira's Eleventh Life Is The One We've Been Watching All These Years And The One Hickman's Run Will Be Set In all the way (that is an unwieldy name, but it's the best one I could think of).
The next revelation in the issue is about Krakoa's past. Krakoa was part of something much bigger, and an unknown enemy came and spit it into two. Who saved Krakoa? Apocalypse and his original Horsemen. First off, this plays into Apocalypse being a bigger part of the X-Men than before. As Krakoa's savior, it makes sense that the island would want him around. It could also play into something bigger, that Apocalypse wants. I have a big problem trusting that Apocalypse is some kind of good guy suddenly. We find out that the original Horsemen were sealed away with the other half of Krakoa- Arakko. In one of the Sinister Secrets earlier in the issue, it talks about how powerful these original Horsemen were.
My theory is that Apocalypse is playing the X-Men. He wants to reopen the chasm that Arakko was cast into and the unknown enemy that sundered Krakoa from Arrako are in and get back his original Horsemen. Every iteration after them has been failures, and if the first ones are so powerful, Apocalypse would definitely want them back. I think this is something that will happen way in the future, but it makes sense for why Apocalypse would be hanging around Krakoa and palling around with the X-Men after years of trying to destroy them.
My least favorite part of this issue in particular, and Powers Of X, in general, is the X-Men Year One Thousand stuff and this issue is no exception. As I say in my review, I just don't see how it will work with the stuff in the present, but I do have a few theories about it. First one- what we're seeing is from the future of Moira's ninth life. Nimrod is the key to this. As we see in House Of X #4, the X-Men destroy the Mother Mold that makes that iteration of Nimrod possible. Unless this is some new version that comes sometime in the future, the Year One Thousand stuff takes place in Moira's ninth life.
The next theory involves what I think will come next with the Phalanx. The Phalanx absorb machines. The mutant Librarian creates a machine and implants his consciousness in it as a way to get the Phalanx to absorb mutantkind and see how valuable they would be as members of the Phalanx (at least that's my reading of the whole thing). You know who is already a machine and probably hates the mutants still? Nimrod. You know who is with the mutants, watching the Phalanx? Nimrod. You know what I'm going to say next?
I think Nimrod is going to join with the Phalanx to take his revenge on mutantkind. There's something very chilling about Nimrod just floating there, watching it all take place and then telling the mutants that the Phalanx wants things like him way more than they want things like them. I think it's going to leap forward, join with the Phalanx and then destroy mutantkind for good. The idea that perplexes me is how this is going to fit in with everything else. As I said, I believe this part of the book takes place in Moira's ninth life. I don't see how Hickman is going to make this have any impact on the present-day X-Men stuff unless Nimrod has somehow learned of Moira's ability and can teach the Phalanx how to jump to her next life as well. He'd also need a time machine, but that's not a huge leap for the Marvel universe, especially a future one. I'm sure Doom's is still lying around somewhere.
So, that about wraps it up for my theories about this week's Powers Of X. This issue did a whole lot of set-up, but it was all so very intriguing. Hickman played it perfectly. He dropped so many hints about so many things. It really got my mental juices flowing as I read it because I could see how he would pay-off all of this stuff… or how he could be using it to cast doubt on what he's really going to do. Either way, there was some great stuff in this issue. The Phalanx part is weak, but it's still interesting in its own little way.
Join me next week for a little chat about House Of X #5.