There's been a demonstrative push by Marvel Comics in the past 18 months to make its Inhuman characters more prominent in its continuity-laden universe, and in the opinion of at least some fans, it's come at the expense of the X-Men. Editor-In-Chief Axel Alonso lit up their radars in March teasing that the X-Men would be going to "an entirely new world" after Secret Wars. Although Alonso walked those comments back somewhat in the wake of reaction to them (we'll get to that in a minute), new information has been revealed that could provide a possible impetus for the X-Men to leave ... ushered out - albeit indirectly - by the Inhumans.
In this week's new preview of October's Extraordinary X-Men #1, Storm tells Jean Grey that the recently released Terrigen Mists from Inhumanity does more than just unlock Inhumans' latent abilities: it kills mutants, and then some. Take a look:
Storm's no scientist, but if you take her words at face value it could mean a big changes in the Marvel Universe landscape ... and yes, we say landscape on purpose.
Readers will of course recall 2006's House of M and "Decimation" events had similar effect, effectively capping the mutant race at 198 -- with all others killed or depowered. At the time, then-Editor-In-Chief Joe Quesada told Newsarama that he and other editors pushed the change because "There are just way too many friggin' mutants in the Marvel Universe!" Since that time, the storyline reduction in mutants was abated somewhat with several mutants regaining their powers, and the change wholly reversed with 2011-2012's Avengers: The Children's Crusade.
But now it seems the X-Men are being shepherded to a new status quo which puts them at odds with the Inhumans, who have grown in recent months to share many of the same story elements.
Back to those comments by Alonso...
"The X-Men office is taking the opportunity of Secret Wars to build an entire new world for the characters - to create a shared universe within the X-books that's set off by a huge event/incident/surprise," the E-i-C said in March. "At that point, they're going to introduce a new team that feels unlike anything you've seen before. It'll be... 'extraordinary.'"
Shortly after that quote became public (and reaction ensued), Alonso took to Twitter to elaborate... sort of:
Now taken literally, there are many "worlds" - planets, alternate realities and timelines - fairly considered "part" of the Marvel Universe ... just ask Spider-Gwen. Alonso's original comments said the X-Men would get their own world, not be expelled from the Marvel Universe entirely.
While Secret Wars has established Marvel Earth is the center of the Marvel's Universe, Alonso's original comments and their follow-up could be interpreted mean that the X-Men could vacate Earth proper for a new world, while still remaining an "integral part of the Marvel Universe."
Newsarama asked Marvel to clarify Alonso's comments in light of this new preview and asked specifically if the X-Men would remain on Earth post-Secret Wars. A spokesperson for the publisher responded "wait and see."
The solicitations for December's All-New X-Men #3 give a preview of what's to come: "As Storm and her team whisk Earth’s remaining mutants away to safe haven, the original X-Men do just the opposite: emboldened by super heroic ideals, the All-New X-Men set out on the road to save their world and write their own futures."
So there's a "safe haven," and maybe a "new world" for the X-Men, but the questions remain - is this "safe haven" the one and the same "new world" Alonso referred to, and exactly where is either or both?