Mister Jeffries in X-Men Legacy #236

X-Men Legacy #236
Jul 2010

The Second Coming storyline continues with Chapter Eight as Bastion’s evil plan to exterminate the mutants comes to fruition. Picking up right where the reader left off in Chapter Seven (New Mutants #13), the X-Club narrowly escape from a massive explosion on the oil rig they were sent to investigate. Mister Jeffries appears as a regular member of the X-Men Science Team, having joined up in Uncanny X-Men #505.

Just prior to the explosion, Jeffries can be seen running inside a corridor inside the rig, along with fellow X-Club members Dr. Kavita Rao and Dr. Nemesis, who insults Jeffries once again, calling him a “toy-maker”. They escape just in the nick of time, and fortunately, three little splashes in the water next to the rig indicate they successfully made it off. Much thanks to the creative team for the little splashes, because it would have been so cheesy to make us think the team had been killed, only to appear safe and sound later in the book.

This issue was released a week before X-Men: Blind Science #1, and has a bit of a continuity problem in that the explosion is portrayed in this issue as being intentional – along with explosions on other rigs in the area – somehow causing the big red sphere to come into existence. However, we learn later that the explosion on this particular rig was actually set off by Dr. Kavita Rao, so the connection between the giant red tower that emerges on top of the rig, the explosion and the giant red sphere becomes confusing to the reader, but only in retrospect.

The team washes up ashore right next to the edge of the big red sphere. Mister Jeffries is unable to communicate with any tech associated with the sphere, showing another [attempted] use of his “talk to machines” power. Then, as randomly as one can get, the Avengers show up, a painfully obvious attempt to cross this issue into the Heroic Age storyline going on in the other half of the Marvel Universe. After a big whack from Thor’s hammer, Jeffries can be seen again from behind next to Spider-Woman as everyone stands around the sphere trying to figure out how to crack it open.

It should be mentioned that about a month before this issue was published, eleven platform workers were killed aboard the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig when it exploded in the Gulf of Mexico. The rig would later collapse, leading up to the massive BP oil spill, one of the worst environmental disasters in US history. The imagery of an exploding offshore oil rig, though eerily coincidental, could not have been inspired by real world events, as the written story and finished artwork preceded the real-world explosion by a considerable margin.

Note: there is a variant cover by David Finch, Matt Banning and Peter Steigerwald and a Heroic Age variant by Mike Choi. Additionally, a 2nd printing variant has interior art by Greg Land.

X-Men Legacy #236 – Finch variant
X-Men Legacy #236 – Heroic Age variant
X-Men Legacy #236 – 2nd printing variant
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