Saturday, June 27, 2009

The Colonel Reviews Utopia

Daron "The Colonel" Jensen reviews Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men Utopia #1


Now living in San Francisco, the X-Men had found a place where they were no longer feared and hated for being different. They even work alongside local police and things are just great. That is, until Simon Trask and his Humanity Now! group proposed legislation to illegalize mutants from having babies. Meanwhile in the wake of the Skrull invasion, Norman Osborn has been given control of the USA’s national security. He’s formed his own team of Avengers comprised of villains & crazies disguised as heroes, fooling the public that they’re the good guys.

Utopia opens with Trask’s Humanity Now! marching on San Francisco’s City Hall to promote their Proposition X, but the local mutant community has formed peaceful protest groups in an attempt to defend their rights. Things quickly degenerate, fighting ensues, and riots & looting break out in the streets. The X-Men aren’t able to help local police quiet things down since they’re part of the problem, so Norman Osborn is brought in to restore order with his Avengers. I can’t say any more, or I’ll ruin the big surprise at the end of the issue.

Mutants have long been a metaphor for minorities in the Marvel Universe, and the mutant minority dealing with bigots is the heart of this story. But instead of it being relegated to the X-side of the Marvel Universe, the Avengers are brought in which is a natural fit. There are reasons for both sides to be here which is nice to see. If you’re not familiar with any of the characters there are handy intro captions for the important players, so no one is left in the dark. This issue is written by Matt Fraction, who’s also currently writing Uncanny X-Men & Iron Man, so he’s familiar with the team and Norman Osborn(who’s been appearing in Iron Man the last few months), and it’s drawn by Marc Silvestri, returning again to the X-Men. From here the story continues in Uncanny 513-514(by Fraction) & Dark Avengers 7-8(by Bendis), and wraps up in EXODUS.

A good set up to the crossover with a very nice twist at the end means I’m looking forward to the rest of this story. If you like either the Dark Avengers or the Uncanny X-Men, or if you’re looking for an exciting story that advances both books and the larger Marvel Universe, than this should be right up your alley. It’s Good Stuff!

-Daron “The Colonel” Jensen


  1. This is definitely worth purchasing.

  2. I was impressed with this as well. Fraction is really hitting his stride lately, as the last issue of Uncanny X-Men was also particularly good. It's nice to see Silvestri take on these characters again, and the twist at the end was both surprising and logical, which can be tough to pull off. I too am looking forward to the rest of this story.