***Major spoilers for this week's Avengers vs. X-Men #5 follow.***The Avengers vs. X-Men balance of power has shifted in a major way, with five X-Men now hosts to the Phoenix force. In this week's Avengers vs. X-Men #5, now on sale, Iron Man's efforts to stop the Phoenix force from coming to Earth actually leads to it breaking into five pieces and inhabiting Cyclops, Emma Frost, Namor, Colossus and Magik — key members of the Utopia-based "extinction" team starring in Uncanny X-Men, and some of the main aggressors thus far in the AvX conflict.
"The mutants are now the Earth's mightiest heroes, capable of doing all this cosmic-scale, epic (stuff)," Matt Fraction, writer of Avengers vs. X-Men #5, told USA Today. "And the Avengers are scrambling to keep up and keep things in perspective."
The article clarifies that though the Phoenix power is conventionally seen as a destructive force, these X-Men are using it for good, employing it to help make a better world — at least so far."Undoubtedly, a lot of what the X-Men are doing, it's fist-pumpingly cool," Marvel editor-in-chief Axel Alonso said in the piece. "Of course the looming question is, at what cost? And will there be a tipping point?"
Up until this point, the Avengers had mostly dominated the early battles in AvX, with this development seemingly flipping that dynamic.
"It completely changes the stakes and completely changes the landscape of the story and where it's going," Marvel executive editor Tom Brevoort said to USA Today.Last month, Marvel editor-in-chief Axel Alonso told us that after Avengers vs. X-Men #5, "people would be talking." In early May, Marvel teased big things coming in act two of AvX with the words "No more Avengers" — calling back to Scarlet Witch's "No more mutants" statements at the end of 2005's House of M, which led to the decimation of the Marvel Universe's mutant population. More from Newsarama on Avengers vs. X-Men:
- 10 Possible AVENGERS VS. X-MEN Endings
- AVENGERS vs. X-MEN Post-Game Week 10: Hope Is Not Lost
- Who's Dying in AVENGERS VS. X-MEN? 10 Potential Victims