Comic Book Review – X-Factor 224.1 (September 2011)

X-Factor 224.1

Writer – Peter David

Artist – Valentine De Landro

In my spare time, I have been spring cleaning my apartment and one of my tasks is sorting and putting comic books away and it’s a Sisyphean task that runs the gamut of emotions including happiness, nostalgia, and stress. I found an assortment of X-Factor books and decided to bag and board them and put them off to the side. The last issue I read a while ago was #224, so I decided to read 224.1 to see what I may have missed.

Marvel Comics started the Point One initiative as a way to slide in stories between ongoing storylines. Sometimes Point Ones were tales that were done in one, would end up being used in a future run or crossover somewhere down the line, or they were a jumping on point for new readers.

This issue features Multiple Man and Layla Miller visiting Jamie’s old home. X-Factor Investigations is in town to do reconnaissance on an old woman who lives in an apartment above a hardware store. A local man believes the woman is more than she seems as she spends all of her waking hours staring out the window of her apartment 24/7, never eating or sleeping. Jamie and Layla end up spending time with Sally and her son, Terry, as he tells them about all about X-Factor Investigations and the mutant heroes that make up the team.

Peter David has been lauded for his long run on The Incredible Hulk and praised for updating X-Factor, which lead to its soaring popularity, separating itself from the pack of other X-books that were released in the 90s and 00s. Mr. David always did a great job balancing surreal, scary, serious, and slapstick elements with a splash of soap opera sudsiness on the titles he wrote. This issue is no exception. From Layla Miller’s creepy way of knowing things and spooking Sally’s son, Terry, to Jamie’s dupe helping Sally cook dinner to Siryn and company battling the old woman, this was the perfect jumping on point for new readers when it was released. The team celebrates closing their case, just as the final page sets the stage for a new one.

I have been reading the Hellfire Gala crossover in all the X-titles these past few weeks and I have been enjoying the different teams and their members, but I do miss the old X-Men crossovers like Onslaught and Phalanx Saga. I’m hoping somewhere down the line there will be a return to form with X-men. For now, I will keep reading the new stories while taking some time to go back and finish reading this run of X-Factor.

Feel free to tell me your thoughts on the new run of X-men (if you have been keeping up with it) and which X-Men stories you enjoyed in the past in the comments section.