Monday, November 25, 2013

The Coming of the X-Sentinels!


Name This Marvel Villain??

Initially involved in a project to determine why mutants exist, Steven Lang developed an irrational hatred of mutantkind which began to usurp his original directive. Working covertly as an agent of the "Council of the Chosen" in order to secure funds and other resources (aside from the illegal appropriations he swept under the rug of the government), he overrode even the Council's objectives (to control mutants and their powers for their own benefit) and created "Project: Armageddon" to carry out the extinction of mutants everywhere.

To that end, he reactivated the Sentinels--deadly mutant-hunting robots created by Bolivar Trask--and appropriated S.H.I.E.L.D.'s abandoned orbital platform to use as a base of operations. And then Lang made his move--capturing several X-Men for study and eventual termination, including their mentor, Charles Xavier. But Cyclops, with the aid of scientist Peter Corbeau, was able to track Lang and the Sentinels to Lang's base and launch a rescue attempt with his new team of X-Men. Which just happened to set up issue #100, and one hell of a surprise waiting for them:

Naturally, Lang was already taking a victory lap:

The "X-Sentinels," as he called them, were built as improvements on Trask's original design to take out not only the X-Men, but the rest of mutantkind as well. Unfortunately, Lang's sentinels were made from incomplete notes he salvaged from Trask's destroyed base, inferior to the original and unable to withstand the X-Men's assault. So once the new X-Men began to storm the base, Lang's plans began to collapse. Lang also had his own safety to worry about, once his captives escaped imprisonment:

But a gunship would prove to be as ineffectual against the X-Men as Lang's carbon copy Sentinels. And with Lang's maniacal hatred fueling his attack, he had mostly himself to blame for the outcome:

I don't really need to tell you what happened next, do I?

As any long-time X-Men reader knows, these events culminated in the beginning of the Phoenix storyline, with the X-Men forced to escape the platform in a damaged shuttle, leaving the cockpit exposed to deadly radiation and Jean Grey its only pilot. So in a way, though Steven Lang's project designation was probably the result of his own twisted mind, "armageddon" was very nearly what the chain of events he set into motion led to.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Best X-Men story ever!