Note: This issue is unnumbered. The Marvel Spotlight series, a promotional series featuring artists and events since 2005, has not been numbered, but unofficial numbering by fans was possible as issues were released. Since this issue does not even retain the title “Marvel Spotlight”, it is difficult to place it in any numbered sequence in that series.
Though the cover shares the logo with the ongoing adjectiveless X-Men title, the actual contents of this promo book are broadly divided among nine sections covering the major ongoing titles in the X-books. Mostly consisting of creator interviews, it also includes penciled previews and retrospective pieces, as well as a modest number of advertisements for collected works. Wild Child appears in one of the promotional images and Northstar appears in a full-page splash reprinted from Uncanny X-Men #531.
The promo piece with Wild Child was first released online in February of 2011 to promote Uncanny X-Force #11 and some sort of nebulous event called “Year of the X-Men”, which so far has turned out to be nothing more than a few promo images and a symbol of a big X in the Roman numeral MMXI. For those of you who were reading Alpha Flight comics instead of paying attention in math class, that’s 2011. It also appeared recently in print as an in-house ad in several comics dated June 2011. The full two page in-house ad is slightly larger than the image printed in this book, which is reduced and cropped, with the text elements of the ad removed as well. The image is of the Age of Apocalypse X-Men battling X-Force, recreating events which sort of happened in Uncanny X-Force #11.
I’m glad it was published in this book because I’m generally not going to post about Alpha Flight members appearing in advertisements and it is a nice piece by Mark Brooks. It appears on the inside front cover and spills over onto the first page, both of which serve as the table of contents for the book. Note that the image shown above is from this Spotlight book and is cropped at Kyle’s elbow and butt from the actual ad which shows him in his entirety.
Turn the page and a full-page splash featuring Northstar opens the section for Uncanny X-Men and Generation Hope, which is an interview with Kieron Gillen, the current writer for both series. The splash is from Uncanny X-Men #531, which was Kieron Gillen’s first issue as co-writer with Matt Fraction, who phased out after the Quarantine arc ended in issue #534. The panel shown above is from the original issue and is faithfully reproduced in this book.