It’s been a while since we’ve had a series titled Uncanny X-Men, and even when we last had that, it wasn’t the flagship X-Men series. In the meantime, it’s easy to feel that the X-Men franchise has become overly large and bloated, with no real sense of direction since Avengers vs. X-Men. That’s not to say there haven’t been good runs. Brian Michael Bendis’s run on All-New X-Men and Uncanny X-Men was good, even if it generally focused more on characters than story. There have been some great X-Men solo titles and a handful of brilliant minis here and there. But with today’s (well … yesterday’s) release of Uncanny X-Men 1, it feels like the franchise is finally trying to return to the basics.
First off, Uncanny X-Men 1 is a massive project of a book. For $8, you’ve got 60 pages of story, divided evenly between the main story, and a collection of three backup stories that ultimately flow into one narrative. Considering most comics are $4 for 20 pages these days, that’s a pretty good deal. The main story features three writers sharing writing duty: Ed Brisson, Matthew Rosenberg and Kelly Thompson. Each of these writers also handle one of the backup stories in turn, with Thompson also penning the epilogue. For the sake of simplicity for this review, I’ll just talk about both halves of this comic as one. Also because it’s such a long book, this review will be longer than normal.