Northstar tells Pixie and Dazzler to STFU!

Uncanny X-Men #534
April 2011

Note: the publication date of Apr 2011 is not an error – both issue #533 and this issue carry the same date.

The Quarantine story arc comes to its conclusion in part five of this five part series, along with Matt Fraction’s run as Uncanny writer, with his recent partner Kieron Gillen taking over as a solo gig. But enough about Matt Fraction. The threat from Lobe and his New X-Men, along with the HX-N1 mutant virus is gone and so is he, so that’s that. A small de facto team of X-Men unaffected by the virus had been in operation in San Francisco and Northstar appears in a few panels as a member of this team, having joined up in issue #530 after joining the full X-Men roster in issue #508.

While taking on a group of “instant” mutants with powers of popular X-Men at a party, Pixie and Dazzler engage in possibly the most irritating exchange ever published in a comic book, repeating a word that is supposed to be funny over and over, but it’s not funny. The word will not be mentioned here and please don’t leave a comment containing the word! The word, combined with the bizarre smiles on all the faces traced by Greg Land just makes one want to ugh just… ugh… and then Northstar swoops in and says what we’re all thinking!

He must have recovered from the massive eye blast from Lobe in the previous issue, and also must have recovered from the rib crack from The Collective Man in the issue before that because it looks as if he’s back in action! A strange bit of shading around his face gives him an odd effect of having a goatee, but it’s just an unfortunate coloring error. Even more unfortunate is the rounded ear traced by Greg Land in that panel.

After a group of infected X-Men infect the “instant” X-Men, Lobe is forced to deactivate the virus, as he becomes one of the infected. The very smiley de facto team then heads over to the Sublime Corporation Headquarters and finds a warehouse filled with the inhalers used to create the instant mutants. Pixie and Dazzler say that damn word again, but Northstar comes to our rescue, admonishing them both, again.

Northstar then suggests Storm use her lightning blasty powers to destroy the contents of the warehouse. He looks a bit beat up and generally covered in scratches, presumably from either the virus or the battle, but so does the rest of the team. Northstar can be seen again in a single panel on the next page leaving the warehouse. Northstar is by far my favorite character in this book, not because he’s the only Alphan in it, but because he keeps telling the girls to STFU!

Note: this issue has 2 variants. One is by Janet K. Lee, artist for Marvel’s adaptation of Jane Austen’s novel Emma, in a strangely conceived Emma Frost / Emma Woodhouse mashup. Another is the San Francisco Giants variant by Giuseppe Camuncoli sold as a show exclusive at WonderCon 2011 in San Francisco. They must have won the Stanley Cup or something, dunno.

Uncanny X-Men #534 – Emma Frost variant
Uncanny X-Men #534 – WonderCon variant


4 Responses to “Northstar tells Pixie and Dazzler to STFU!”

  1. Suzene Says:

    That is just wretched art. Land cannot draw flying characters with any sense of motion or grace; they always look like they’re plummeting. Northstar in that first panel looks as if he’s about to try and dash his brains out against the pavement to get away from the Welsh slang.

    Again, thanks for taking the bullet so others don’t have to.

    • rplass Says:

      Yeah, there’s something wrong with Northstar’s right arm in that flying scene. Where is it? Presumably it is obscured by Dazzler but if drawn in symmetry with his left arm, it ought to be visible. I didn’t even mention some of the outright recycled images used in the other non-Northstar pages but yes, this was a particularly poor and lazy showing from Greg Land, again.

  2. Mutant Raccoon Says:

    I just want to know what the word was. [I stopped reading Uncanny – it was too much of an inFraction. [And Gillen’s not much better which is a shame as I liked SWORD]. Thanks as usual for a great post.

    • rplass Says:

      Well, let’s give Gillen some time to show what he’s got. Some writers are great no matter what they do, some find a niche, and others write for Uncanny. I have an open mind and will let him start on a clean slate – which is easy to do because I’m not really reviewing Gillen as an X-Men writer but only through the insanely narrow lens of how he treats Alphans Northstar and Jeffries as characters in this particular X-book.

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