Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Fanholes Side Story #14 'Scott Summers is a Jerk!'

'Escape From The Negative Zone' is a three part crossover event that ran in the 2011 annuals of Uncanny X-Men, Steve Rogers: Super Solider and Namor The First Mutant. Our story begins like this...

We have Hope complaining that Scott never lets her do anything, while in the background the X-Club work on a limbo bridge. Namor bursts in demanding a piece of equipment be returned. Then, the whole thing goes crazy and Cyclops, Hope, Namor and Dr. Nemesis get whisked away to the Negative Zone .

The four break off into separate teams, looking for food and water. Namor ends up fighting giant monsters while Dr. Nemesis watches and makes smart remarks. Not a wise thing to do given the fits of rage Namor is prone to. Cyclops and Hope bicker about...well everything. Hope tells him that she’s not a baby, that she lived with Cable, who taught her everything and she can handle herself. She shows just how well she can handle things by immediately getting them captured by Blastaar's forces.

Back on earth, Emma Frost and Pixie go to New York looking for the Avengers. They see a broadcast by Blastarr, showing the captured Cyclops. Blastarr demands Reed Richards come through the portal or they risk war with the Kree Empire. A little backstory...Blastarr has been an on again off again ally of the Kree since 'War of Kings'.

Anyway, Emma and Pixie meet up with Steve Rogers who goes in Reed’s place. Reed’s just never around when you need him. Scott and Hope manage to escape confinement and eventually meet up with Steve, but not before Scott is forced to admit to Hope...

They are about to fight their way through Blastarr’s forces when an enraged Namor breaks in and in a fit of rage seriously wounds Hope. He then easily defeats Blastarr. As a Namor fan boy I have to smile. Its always fun when one of your favorite character beats a really powerful cosmic guy. (unless of course its Black Panther beating Silver Surfer)

Blastarr recovers and goes all out with Namor. Meanwhile, Dr. Nemesis finds an alien facility and makes them create a new bridge to Earth. Steve takes the injured Hope and makes a run for the center of 42, the old prison created in the Civil War crossover. There is another bridge there, but Namor and Blastarr destroy it in the battle. Cyclops tries to reason with Namor...and fails. Finally, he is forced to unleash everything he has.

It only stuns Namor. Steve and Hope share some time together, where in his usual boy scout way, manages to lecture and inspire Hope in the same breath. Basically, he tells her not to be so hard on Cyclops and that, in combat people die, but you have to keep fighting so their sacrifice means something.

Dr. Nemesis shows up with the device and leads a monster back with him. Blastarr fights the monster, Hope uses her powers to take on Namor and they all manage to make it back home.

There are some nice moments in this crossover. The humor is the best part, as each installment is full of genuinely funny moments and snaky dialogue from Hope and Dr. Nemesis. We see Hope’s character evolve from kind of bratty, to a more mature adult. When Hope and Cyclops escape, he is without his visor and must rely on Hope to help him along. Also, while crawling though the duct vents of 42, Hope says that a good looking man just arrived...who turns out to be Steve Rogers. All in all, it’s a fun crossover, which is saying something because sometimes these annual crossovers are bland at best.

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