I got X-Men 197, by Mike Carey and Chris Bachalo. I think I am the only one around here getting this book and I am getting it only for the art. I WORSHIP Bachalo, to the point that -- after too many episodes of Miami Ink on the Learning Chanel -- am seriously thinking of getting a tattoo of his work on my arm. Because I only read for the art, when someone else does the art I don't get the book. So I am following Carey's run only sporadically. The gist of it is that we have an X-Team that does not get along with Xavier and consists of Rogue (the leader), Cable, Mystique, Sabertooth, Cannonball, and Iceman, Lady Mastermind, and some kind of fancy cute-girl Sentinel. The team, with the exception of the last two characters I mentioned, is actually odd enough to be almost interesting. Most are characters I know from various X-Books that I read in the 90s, so it is good for some nostalgia: the banner under the issue number even sports those old floating heads of the leads, which I love.
This week's issue involved Lady Mastermind trying to root out some kind of psychic entity hiding in her mind. The thing jumps from her to Mystique, and then tells Cable (after taking apart his gun with telekinesis), that it flew in from Shi'ar space (a trip that took centuries), and now wants, not a fight, but protection from the "Hecatomb" that is coming to eat the world (Earth, I guess) -- it came to the X-Men because it is attracted to psychics.
The kicker is the bit where the creature introduces itself: it speaks in black word balloons with white letters, begins in a alien language and states "I am Ev Teel Urizen. I am the Proscribed, the Anathema, the Womb-Weld. I am Mummudrai."
Mummudrai is what Casandra Nova was called in at least two issues of Grant Morrison's New X-Men -- a Shi'ar legend, about how everyone has an evil twin (hence "Womb-Weld"). Two things to note about it's appearance here: 1) it is named Urizen, which is William Blake's name for evil Ice Cold reductive, unimaginative rationality in his poetry. 2) If it is someone's evil twin, it seems fairly nice and divorced from any particular host (it is not Lady Mastermind's Mummudrai, for instance). I am not sure what to say about this other than it struck me as very odd.
I picked up Douglass Rushkoff and Liam Sharp's Testament #16, and Livewire, which was recommended to me around here, but have not yet gotten around to reading them yet.
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