Uncanny X-Men #528
Though this issue has no tag line, it’s clearly part three of “The Five Lights” story arc, continuing from the previous issue as another one of the five recently discovered mutants joins the fold. Northstar appears on two pages as a regular member of the X-Men, having joined up in issue #508.
Similar to many other issues in his run, Matt Fraction writes a jumpy set of multiple plot lines with the main story of The Five Lights occupying half the pages. The rest are a mishmash of two or three page beats, one of which shows Kitty Pryde, still trapped in her containment cylinder which we saw Jeffries working on last issue. Another story is a two-page Northstar/Dazzler team-up, reminiscent of the wordless arrest scene in issue #522. The story stands alone, seemingly inserted for the sole purpose of giving Northstar and Dazzler some face time, as they hadn’t shown up for a few issues in this title.
At the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (a real museum), criminal super-villains Nekra and Frenzy have blown up an exhibit as a political protest. Alpha Flight Fans should recognize Nekra from Alpha Flight #’s 79-80 where she fought Heather in Winnipeg, making her an official Alpha Flight enemy. Frenzy ought to be recognized from her appearance in the X-Men Annual #1 (2007), when Northstar, along with Aurora and Mystique fought her, ultimately tossing her out of the S.H.I.E.L.D. heli-carrier. Their ire has been irked by what they perceive to be a sexist exhibit by an artist named Barry Richardman, which is a veiled reference to controversial photographer Terry Richardson.
After some incomprehensible fight banter, something about art (?), Northstar easily takes out Nekra with a “Krak” and Dazzler takes out Frenzy with her light powers. Northstar then comments on their skill as costumed crimefighters, as this is one of several times they’ve teamed up like this. It’s hard to find him in that panel, but if you look hard, you can see him just to the left of Dazzler’s butt.
Whilce Portacio draws Northstar with an interesting version of his recent X-Men costume, modifying the usual starburst around his shoulders into a chevron, with white stripes going down his arms. On his hands are padded white gloves, and he’s drawn with a white belt and white stripes going down the legs, somewhat similar to how he was drawn in Nation X: X-Factor #1. It’s a fairly good costume, much better than the one he drew in issue #522, and though it seems to contain a random combination of elements and minor modifications, he’s got the pointy ears done just right, so all is good.