Comic Book Review – The X-Cellent #1

The X-Cellent #1

Writer – Peter Milligan

Artist – Michael Allred

Pittsburgh Comic Con used to run in late April which would coincide with my final week of school at the University of Pittsburgh. I attended one show before returning home for the summer and I found one of the hottest comics according to Wizard Magazine, X-Force # 116, for 10 bucks, which was a steal. This issue had a new direction and lineup featuring never before seen mutants like Zeitgeist, U-Go Girl, and The Anarchist. When X-Force became X-Statix, I tried to keep up with the monthly series, but school kept me busy, and funds were needed for more important things at the time.

Fast forward to 2022 and everything we loved in our youth is back again – Ghostface is once again causing trouble for Sidney Prescott in Scream. Those loveable oafs from Jackass are back in a new installment of the franchise. We also have Peter Milligan and the Allreds returning to the world of X-Men with The X-Cellent.

The X-Cellent is a new team of mutants led by Zeitgeist, who was thought to have perished in that first issue of the rebooted X-Force mentioned previously. He is joined by Uno, Joe Bomb, Mirror Girl, and Hurt John and their popularity soon skyrockets, leaving Mister Sensitive and X-Statix in the dust. What are the intentions of the X-Cellent and can two popular superhero teams share the spotlight in a world where shares and clicks determine who is the best of the best?

I was so x-cited to read this first issue that I ended up purchasing it through ComiXology. I would have rushed to my local comic store to get it, but the city had a winter storm event that prevented me from doing so.

What I loved about Milligan and the Allreds’ original run on X-Force/X-Statix was that anyone could die and be replaced by a much weirder, quirkier member. No one was safe. I also liked the tongue-in-cheek situations the characters were involved in and the biting satire from issue to issue. Real life celebrities got lampooned and skewered and it was easy to tell who got burned! Thankfully nothing has dramatically changed: this issue ends with the death of a beloved character and a few cameos from some of the hottest singers of today at the Rick Ragger Memorial Concert.

Fair warning – I was able to remember some of the members of X-Statix from my previous experience with them but I feel like I should have read Giant Size X-Statix from 2019 before diving into this issue. I had to consult the Marvel Wiki Page for a who’s who of new team members like The A and Phatty. My next goal is to read that giant size issue before the second installment comes out. After that, I’ll be diving in the dollar bin to see if I can find any back issues of X-Statix.

I think a lot of people, like myself, that loved the zany adventures and death-defying antics of X-Statix are thrilled to have them back. It was a long hiatus but it was worth the wait. If you didn’t get a chance to read these comics in the early 2000s, now is your chance to jump onboard. Now it’s just a matter of figuring out which franchise will be getting a new lease on life? Any guesses?

Next Issue – “There is discord among the X-cellent members! And as their quest for fame continues, a spot has just opened up on the team. But will this addition to the group lead them to superstardom! Let’s hope their followers think so.” In Stores March 16th, 2022.