Generation Hope #16

Issue Date: 
April 2012
Story Title: 

James Asmus (writer), Takeshi Miyazawa (artist), Jim Charalampidis (color), Dave Sharpe (letterer), Jorge Molina (cover), Irene Y. Lee (production), Jordan D. White (assistant editor), Daniel Ketchum (associate editor), Nick Lowe (editor), Axel Alonso (editor in chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (Exec. Publisher)

Brief Description: 

Hope has read Shaw’s file and is more wary of him but still decides to give him a chance, though she withholds the information. Kenji reminds Laurie of their plot and seemingly involves Emma and others as well. Irma and Celeste Cuckoo, who have put Primal asleep, too decide they need to move against Hope before she influences their sister Phoebe too much. Emma moves against Cyclops, taking him out while Kenji distracts Hope in the mindscape. When she fights her way back to reality, she finds she is tied to a giant X-shaped cross with many of Utopia’s residents howling for her blood. In the meantime, Pixie and Velocidad, unaware of what is transpiring, flirt.

Full Summary: 

Utopia, 7 AM:

Hope sits outside, a stack of files next to her, looking pensive. She’s up early, Scott Summers greets her. She usually is, Hope replies. It’s one of the only quiet times around here. Still reading Shaw’s file? he asks. It’s… pretty long, she admits, and pretty upsetting. Then he hopes she understands why he wasn’t thrilled to see him as Hope’s guest. But like he said, he is trusting her on this one. If Hope says he has become a new man, someone she wants on her team, he will accept that. Icily she asks if it’s true that Shaw tried to kill her dad, Cable. Yeah, a few times, Scott replies.

Transonic sits atop a tower, reading a book. Zero joins her, remarking he sees her read more often than eat. Maybe he is not the only one whose brain and innards mutated into being one and the same. She’s definitely changed, Laurie replies. She’ll let him know when she’s figured out what she’s become.

Hopefully the answer is someone who’s ready to topple their fiery slave master, Kenji replies. Laurie wants to fly away. Kenji holds her back and plugs into her mind, creating an idyllic setting where both have their non-mutated forms.

He explains he thought she might appreciate it. But he also wanted to make a point. Hope Summers can use the power of any mutant on Earth. But she’s never even attempted to return their appearance to normal. Imagine being able to move about freely without fear of immediately becoming a victim of prejudice! But Hope has no interest in making them happy. She only wants to make them soldiers.

Laurie asks to be changed back. She doesn’t want to pretend to be normal. Kenji complies. Laurie admits she doesn’t know anymore regarding Hope. Nothing has changed! he insists. Hope exploits them! She controls them! Whatever it was she did to activate their powers also gave her a leash for them. Laurie saw what Hope did to him. She ripped his body apart forced him to attack those other mutants. She robbed him of his will – himself… and that was all he had left!

Laurie claims to understand. She can hardly say who she is anymore. She feels Hope’s influence all the time, remaking her in her own image… and she hates it!

Kenji adds this isn’t even about them. If Hope continues to activate every new mutant that comes into existence and subjugates them to her will, she’ll hold the reins to a devastating amount of power. Only, he doesn’t trust her with it. Does Laurie?

Inside, Celeste and Irma Cuckoo hose a sleeping Primal, hoping that, even if this won’t cut down on his hormones, it might do something about the stench.

Primal is in his own Cuckoo-induced dream where several beautiful girls feed him.

Phoebe joins them, asking what they are doing. Trying to house-break Hope’s mutt, the others reply. They almost had him spayed or neutered. Whatever it is, you do to boys. Phoebe tells them that that isn’t funny. Her sisters criticize her for taking Hope’s side against them.

Phoebe demands to know since when they are at odds with Hope. The others remind her that Ms. Frost warned them of all the trouble Hope brings. Are they sure this isn’t just a case of new girl jealousy? Phoebe asks. Irma almost attacks her, asking what her damage is. Celeste holds her back. Phoebe isn’t the problem. Hope is, and they won’t let her tear them apart, so they’ll have to put an end to it, Celeste and Irma decide.

Hope approaches Shaw’s cell, asking how they’ve been treating him. He is relieved to see her and tells her, initial reactions aside, he guesses they treated him alright. He still had to beg for comfortable clothes though, he remarks, regarding his jeans and hoodie. Does everyone in this country wear bright skin tight jumpsuits? He doesn’t see the appeal.

Any progress on remembering who he is? Hope asks. If she lets him out, he hopes they can find out together. She stares at him wordlessly. If she knew something about his identity, she would tell him right? Shaw asks. Of course, she assures him. She opens the cell. In the meantime, his movement on the island is going to be restricted for a while. He will not be let near the ocean. She suggests he grab some food and she’ll catch him up on everything. Shaw thanks her.

Pixie knocks at Velocidad’s door. She is surprised the room is tidier than she thought. Gabriel admits he did a speed- clean while she was at the door. So don’t open the closet. She’d be crushed to death.

Amused, she asks if that means he slept off the angst and anger? No, he meant what he said before. He won’t keep using his powers burning through days of his life in minutes for things that aren’t important. He just used his powers to try and make a good impression, she points out. Something important, he repeats and kisses her.

Pixie pushes him back, still not sure he is a trustworthy guy. Gabriel points out he is one of the last guys her age left on the island. Maybe she likes old guys, she retorts. If she’s serious, he’ll run himself into old age right now, Gabriel offers. They kiss.

Elsewhere, Kenji leaves Emma’s office, both of them clearly agreeing on what they discussed. She asks if he is working on anything new these days. Kenji hints he might be coming up on his masterpiece.

Hope walks by. Does she even want to know what this was about? she asks Emma who icily tells her she should rather worry about Shaw. He’s supposed to be under her watch at all times. He’s taking a shower, Hope replies. Should she assume Emma will use this as an excuse to kill him or join him? Turning to her diamond form, Emma tells her she is an utterly rotten child and will deserve everything that’s going to come out of this.

Outside, Random, Dragoness, Bliss and Erg are sitting, discussing something. When they see Hope coming, they quickly grow quieter. Random, however, announces he isn’t scared of her and calls her over. Way he sees it, they still need to have a little confrontation, without her hiding behind her anime meat puppet.

Fine, Hope replies. Whose powers should she kick his ass with? Random angrily announces she is supposed to be the savior of mutantkind? As far as he is concerned he hasn’t seen her do…

Erg holds him back, reminding him they are still cleaning bits of Hope’s gooey friend out of their nooks and crannies. Kenji shows up that moment, as though called. He’d rather avoid a repeat of that himself. Glancing at Hope, he continues it is a deeply distressing experience to be used like a gross instrument. By one’s “friend,” no less.

Hope tells him he knows she didn’t… Yes, yes, he knows exactly what she meant by that, Kenji agrees. But he’s prepared to bury the hatchet. She isn’t aware that part of him attacks her from behind, dragging her into his mindscape.

In an office, Emma explains to Scott that, after a chat with Kenji, she is more convinced than ever that Hope’s activities should be suspended. Scott suggests not to get too carried away, just because a guy who made shrines to her in art galleries—

It’s not just Kenji! Emma shouts. She’s been warning him about that infernal girl! She accuses him of harboring a deliberate blind spot for Hope, even though the Phoenix could be lurking inside that wretched child, waiting to kill them all!

Scott tells her to stop. He won’t let her or anyone conspire against Hope. She knows, Emma replies and uses her telepathy to make him fall asleep. That’s why she has to keep him there. So he can’t interfere.

Kenji’s mindscape:

Hope and Kenji walks along a somewhat surreal hallway. Hope complains what is it today? Everyone is so hostile to her suddenly. This isn’t sudden, Kenji smirks. This has been a long time coming.

What is that supposed to mean? she asks. The way she treats people, the way she uses them, she’s been making enemies, he reveals.

The hallway blurs. Hope notices something wrong. Where’s Martha? she asks. She can’t survive without being tethered… Kenji’s tentacles grab her as he assures her Martha is safe, just somewhere else. He might as well spoil the surprise now.

The piece of flesh he covered her mouth with takes on a life of its own. He’s been able to separate and still control his pieces for a while now. He just didn’t want anyone to now. It’s surprising that they all believed he couldn’t. After all, he got the idea from her. When they first met in Tokyo, Hope ripped off his powers and sent a little bit flying off to infiltrate Cyclops’ mind. Because she wanted to control him. Like she does everyone!

Hope tears off the flesh. This is just one of his stupid mindgames? she demands. He’s surprised she didn’t figure it out right away. He seems to have trouble achieving verisimilitude. His mind is simply all over the place.

As more tentacles entangle her, Hope orders him to stop. She finds herself surrounded by monsters as he tells her that her problem is she wants it both ways. She wants to be the messiah of mutantkind but doesn’t actually care about any of them.

Hope warns him to let her get back to the real world. It’s time for her to wake up anyway, he tells her. They are finally ready for her.

Hope wakes up, tied to a makeshift X crucifix, surrounded by several residents of Utopia, including Magneto, Emma, Laurie and Kenji, who tells her that, before she can be the messiah, she has to die for them…

Characters Involved: 

Hope, Pixie III, Primal, Transonic, Velocidad, Zero II (Lights / Hope’s rescue team)

Cyclops, Emma Frost, Magneto (all X-Men)

Stepford Cuckoos (X-Men students)

Sebastian Shaw

Bliss, Dragoness, Erg, Litterbug, Random (Utopia residents)

Story Notes: 

Hope used her powers that way in issue # 3.

Issue Information: 

This Issue has been reprinted in:

Written By: