Posts Tagged ‘Necrosha’

Diamond Lil cameo in Dazzler #1

June 25, 2010

Dazzler #1
Jul 2010

This One-Shot exists along the dimensional axis of the Necrosha story line juxtaposed with the Women of Marvel conceptual meta-arc. What the heck does that mean? Well, it’s labeled as a “Necrosha Aftermath” issue, the only one of its kind at the time of its release. It’s also part of Marvel’s “Women of Marvel” promotion of female comic characters and creators. Diamond Lil appears in one panel, in flashback to the unfortunate events of X-Force #23.

The story line picks up some time after Necrosha ends, but before Second Coming begins, telling the story of Dazzler re-uniting with her sister Mortis. Diamond Lil appears in the 2nd segment of the book, titled, “Tough Call”, referring to a phone call Dazzler makes to their mom after she brings her captured sister to Utopia for treatment. Penciled by Italian artist Francesca Ciregia, the image in flashback is among several images of Mortis as remembered by Dazzler, up to and including the Necrosha arc.

The Women of Marvel project, which includes a disorganized smattering of one-shots, miniseries, an omnibus edition and an OHOTMU collection, is explained in part by Marvel’s Senior Vice President of Sales, David Gabriel:

…one facet of the program is to celebrate women of the industry, whether they are super-heroines, super-villainesses, artists, writers, editors, colorists, inkers, proofreaders, models, [etc.]

which would be fine if any of Alpha’s women were included besides for the meaningless and technically impossible death choke shown in this issue. Where are: Aurora, Snowbird, Talisman, Persuasion, Goblyn, Pathway, Witchfire, Murmur, Ghost Girl, and/or Stitch? Not to be found in this company-wide promotion! We’ll have to wait until Canadian Women of Marvel starts up, hopefully soon!

Diamond Lil killed in X-Force #23

February 3, 2010

X-Force #23
Mar 2010

The Necrosha storyline continues in this issue as an invading force attacks Utopia Island, the new home of the X-Men. The battle, which started in the previous issue turns sour very quickly, as some of the bad guys have literal power over life and death. Mister Jeffries appears as a regular member of the X-Men Science Team, having joined up in Uncanny X-Men #505 and Diamond Lil appears as well.

Diamond Lil, who had been tending to Iceman in the previous issue, can be seen very tiny on the intro page in a reduced version of the 2pg spread at the end of issue #22 which shows the invading force blinking in by teleportation. However, once the issue begins, she suddenly becomes extremely impatient with the situation, dumps Iceman right on the ground (poor Bobby) and rushes headstrong into the fray. She ignores Mister Jeffries’ admonition to wait and is immediately taken out by Mortis’ death touch which kills her instantly. It’s just “HK–!” and then THUD! and that’s the end of Lillian “Creepy” Crawley.

Later, Jeffries can be seen holding Lil’s limp dead body, lamenting, “I never stopped loving you,” a confusing statement given the unknown status of their relationship at the time of publication. Even more confusing was the relative ease with which Mortis’ death touch was able to penetrate Lil’s impenetrable bio-aura, unless it is far more disruptive to energy fields than previously known.

Just like the sudden reappearance and immediate subsequent death of Marrina in Dark X-Men: The List #1, the initial excitement over Lil’s resurfacing in last issue took a turn for the worse. It’s not clear why Chris Yost felt compelled to kill her off, in addition to a few other mutants, but he did have this to say about it:

…Pretty much every comic, artist, writers, you name it has people that love it, or people that hate it. It’s subjective.

It really is an interesting situation here, though, with comics – because even when people hate a book with the power of a million exploding suns… they will keep reading it because of a love for the characters. I get that…

…We’re still taking heat from the New X-Men bus explosion four years ago. There’s some dude on Comixfan that will probably hate us forever for killing Quill. We’ll take heat for Diamond Lil forever, too. And that’s okay.

If you guys weren’t passionate about these characters and stories, good or bad, it wouldn’t be worth doing.

Chris Yost lacks a needle in his moral compass. His logic is: writing that results in fans hating him for killing a beloved character or writing that results in fans loving him for resurrecting a beloved character are morally equivalent because there will always be one person somewhere who will hate him. Since he can’t ever please 100.00% of all people 100.00% of the time, he ought not make any attempt to please anyone, ever, and just sit back and be hated, or loved, happy that he was able to evoke an emotion at all while showing complete indifference to the nature of the evoked emotion while somehow still existing in a state of wonderment and admiration for comic book fans. Terrible. He ought to get over this angsty perfectionism and stop assuming that fans will continue to buy comics he writes just because they love comic books more than they hate his writing.

It really is very disappointing to lose Lil this way. There was no reason to kill her off, except for he fact that she was an unused character who precious few would mourn. It didn’t advance the storyline nor add characterization to anyone. All it did was completely ignore her life story, which was one of redemption from a checkered past into a top tier super-hero as an Alpha Flight member. She was also a survivor of a breast cancer scare and a troubling love triangle that caused immense suffering in her heart, the only weak part of her otherwise indestructible body. Her meaningless death by means of an instant death touch from a character she had no previous connection with, and without any resistance is incomprehensible, shocking and undeserved.

Note: this issue has a variant cover, also by Clayton Crain.

X-Force #23 – Clayton Crain variant

Note: a portion of the actual panel depicting Diamond Lil’s death was reproduced on the Intro page of X-Force #24. That issue also has a variant cover, also by Clayton Crain.

X-Force #24
X-Force #24 – Clayton Crain variant

Diamond Lil resurfaces in X-Force #22

December 27, 2009

X-Force #22
Feb 2010

No, not THAT X-Force, the other one. The one that Cyclops created as a covert mutant operations squad, led by Wolverine. The team started out before the Utopia storyline and continued on its own, gathering up the New Mutants and X-Men: Legacy titles to run into the Necrosha storyline. In this issue, Necrosha makes it to Utopia Island, the new floating home of the X-Men. Madison Jeffries appears in one panel as a regular member of the X-Men Science Team, having joined up in Uncanny X-Men #505 and Diamond Lil appears in two panels.

As Utopia Island is being attacked by a bunch of very dead and very bad bad guys, the X-Men feel the tide turning against them. Many of their opponents are lost loved ones whose bodies need to be hideously mutilated in order to be defeated. In the heat of battle, Cyclops turns to Jeffries to ask if he can interface with the techno-organic invaders. Note that Jeffries is not drawn with his signature greyed temples, the only time since joining up with the X-Men that he’s drawn this way. Clayton Crain’s style is so impenetrably murky that it’s not all that surprising, but since Cyclops addresses him directly as “Madison”, there’s little doubt who he is.

It would have been nice to have Jeffries transmorph some nearby machinery into a suit of Box armor and start cleaning up the place. He could singlehandedly wipe out all 30 invaders, but is relegated to just monitoring the battle and devising interface schemes, which is a shame. Since Matt Fraction had repeatedly under-used his incredible offensive combat abilities, it’s becoming par for the course for writers to use him this way, so I’ll blame what Craig Kyle and Christopher Yost are doing here on the other guy instead.

The real gem of this issue is the resurfacing of Diamond Lil. She hasn’t appeared since X-Men: 198 #4 (Jun 2006) when she appeared briefly as a member of a tiny group of disaffected mutants who survived M-Day with their powers intact. Fans had been wondering about her whereabouts, especially since her husband Madison has been quite busy in various X-books since the beginning of 2009 as a member of the X-Men Science Team.

She is shown in one panel tending to Iceman, who was taken out in battle. Shown wearing her classic green and yellow diamond patterned costume and her yellow diamond mask, she’s not identified outright, but her identity has been confirmed by Chris Yost on an internet forum. Lil shows up again very tiny at the end of the story in a 2pg spread, in the background and in the same position as earlier, tending to Iceman. It’s not clear if she’s joined the X-Men, just visiting, living on Utopia, or even if she’s still married to Madison, but this little cameo is very good news for Alpha Flight fans and I’m delighted to have her included in this comic.

Note: this issue has a variant cover, also by Clayton Crain:

X-Force #22 – Clayton Crain variant