Marvel and DC have made headlines with relaunching series with new #1s, and now they're looking to do it again by doing the opposite.
Marvel has announced today via CBR that the Uncanny X-Men series will see it's issue numbering jump to #600 in May to reflect the series full history before the recent two relaunches. This isn't new however, as series writer Brian Michael Bendis revealed this during a panel at New York Comic Con 2014 and in a subsequent interview with Newsarama.
What is new, however, is that Bendis will be concluding his run on this title and All-New X-Men with this over-sized May issue.
"Over the course of the last few years, I will have written almost 90 issues of X-Men. That's a good run!," Bendis told CBR. "One of the best parts about being on X-Men was that I knew I was never going to hit Chris Claremont's X-Men record, so I was free of whatever that is that drives such a thing. Last year, we were planning everything out, and boy, Uncanny #600 came like two weeks before Secret Wars. So I thought, 'That's interesting! Let's make the most out of that!'"
Bendis cites projects in the past he was offered that he had to decline due to his busy schedule, which have been brewing in his mind to work on. The writer is ramping up for a busy year, as his recently relaunched Powers comic series is debuting as a television series and he's resuming work other creator-owned series such as United States of Murder, Inc. and Scarlet.
"Well, what we have is a massive amount of mutants going through very important chapters in their life, all of which are coming to a head," Bendis told Newsarama back in October. "Cyclops’ revolution, the All-New X-Men not being where they’re supposed to be, Hank McCoy doing whatever the hell he wants in the name of “science” and “good,” yet still thinking Cyclops is an asshole for doing the same thing."
Bendis tells CBR that the centerpiece of his X-Men run has been the story of Beast, who brought the time-displaced original X-Men forward to modern times for All-New X-Men and who became involved with the Illuminati in Jonathan Hickman's Avengers titles.
Uncanny X-Men #600 will be the culmination of the various storylines and beats he's started during his run says Bendis, and the imminent arrival of Secret Wars after this issue "allowed" him to write a "clean break" of his run.
Bendis describes Uncanny X-Men #600 as "like a giant, 100-page book" with Chris Bachalo acting as the anchor artist alongside Stuart Immonen, Kris Anka, Mahmud Asrar and other artists to be revealed. In addition to bringing back some of his past collaborators on the X-Men books, Bendis stated that he's "put in some requests" to bring in unnamed X-Men creators of the past in for the oversized issue.