[This post is part of a series of posts looking issue by issue at Joss Whedon's Astonishing X-Men run. For more of the same click the Astonishing X-Men link at the bottom of this post.]
In the danger room Wing gives weird speeches, and the X-Men attack, releasing the Danger Room in humanoid form.
"This being has power we can't fathom, and all it has ever known in violence." This is a persuasive point, and justifies Whedon's idea of a sentient danger room. Whedon adds some stuff about consciousness and contradiction and finding yourself in the contradiction which is actually pretty good, I think, though I do not know much about the science of consciousness and language. It sounded pretty good, which is all that matters here. And the contradiction Whedon imagines makes sense: we thought the danger room was programed not to kill, but Whedon's idea is that is was programed to kill and then had a separate parent program that prevented it from killing -- hence the anger, aggression, and the feeling of being trapped. This is pretty good stuff, well thought through.
Two problems here, though. The first may not really be a problem, and I need to check it to be sure, but Chris Bachalo drew an arc of Uncanny in which Cerebro became sentient, then came back to kill the X-Men. I expect, and like, major plots like Return to Weapon X and Days of Future Past to be returned to again and again in different versions. That is inevitable, and good, as I explained in the context of Morrison. I am less sure what to say, and what to think, about a doubling of a minor earlier story with no real acknowledgement. That seems to leave allusion and revision behind for less reputable modes of memory. Or is could just be inevitable that stuff like this happens in a comic book that has been around for more than forty years, and it is no big deal.
Problem number two? As everyone pointed out at the time the Danger Room -- Danger from here out -- has dreadlocks. Now the word dreadlocks refers to the dread of god Rastafarians have; they do not cut their hair because of a biblical commandment. This fits in with the religious stuff the religious stuff Danger has been spouting. But it does not do much about the fact that Danger is a bit of a design disaster. She is at boring and a bit silly when something awe-inspiring is needed. It has other problems too, which I will talk about next time, as it comes up.
Cassaday repeat/background watch. Wolverine gets a zoom, the X-plane gets a double take, Wing gets a double take. The X-Men spend time in a blank grey space, much of the danger room is a blank red space, which morphs into blank blue space. Enough of the panels have a background, or assorted details, to make the empty ones acceptable. Cassaday does some cool stuff here, before the reveal of Danger.