Ultimate X-Men #65

Issue Date: 
January 2006
Story Title: 
Magnetic North: the End

Brian K. Vaughan (writer), Stuart Immonen (pencils), Wade von Grawbadger (inks), Justin Ponsor (colors), Chris Eliopoulos (letters), Jacob Chabot (production), Nicole Wiley & John Barber (assistant editors), Ralph Macchio (editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief), Dan Buckley (publisher)

Brief Description: 

Magneto has escaped from the Triskelion. Together with Forge and holding Polaris as their hostage, they soon part ways with Mystique to conclude another part of their master scheme. Below them, Dazzler has been struck through her chest by Deathstrike’s claws, and is knocked out. As Yuriko is about to finish off Warren as well, her neck gets snapped by Longshot. Warren immediately takes off with Alison to get her some help. Once they are gone, Longshot is approached by someone. Once outside, Magneto and his companions are confronted by Havok, Northstar and the X-Men. Magneto destroys the X-Wing and a battle results. As he rescues her, Kitty and Iceman become friends again. Magneto holds Havok hostage as well, hoping by doing this Cyclops will have to let them escape. But Cyclops ignores that, since he knows his powers can’t affect his brother, and shoots Magneto down. Fury arrives and Lorna’s innocence is proven. Still, he wants to arrest Havok for being responsible for a prison riot, as Fury lost a lot of his men because the Ultimates were too busy dealing with him instead of the riot as they should be. But Wolverine convinces Fury to let them go, though because of this the friendship between the X-Men and SHIELD ends. One week later, Alison is still in a coma. Xavier fakes that Warren gets expelled from the school and instead recruits him into his underground, wanting the boy to keep an eye on Emma and enrolls him at her school. Emma herself visits Magneto, who is back at his cell, and threatens him not to come near one of her students again or else she’ll kill him. Jean-Paul invites Peter to the Homecoming dance, which results into Peter declaring that he is gay. On that very moment, Rogue returns to the school. At the same time at the Savage Land, Longshot and the real Magneto return home! Magneto explains that he had Mystique impersonate him and that she is now a prisoner at the Triskelion, fooling everyone else. He is ready to make new plans, believing its time for something new.

Full Summary: 

The Triskelion…

Mystique, triumphantly holding a gun, mocks that she would give anything to see the look on Xavier’s face when Fury tells him Magneto released every last prisoner of this base. Magneto reminds Mystique that she appreciates everything she has done, but admits that, sometimes, he wonders if her undying loyalty stems from respect to him, or hatred towards Xavier. Mystique is surprised Magneto asks her that. She remembers that they all bought into Xavier’s “dream” until they got a look at the brain behind it. Xavier promised her he would never hurt her and then he stabbed her in the back. And now she wonders if he did it for Emma Frost.

Forge, holding an unconscious Polaris in his arms, doesn’t want to go over this again. Magneto admits that he despises Xavier as much as Mystique does, but feels this situation is more than about just one man. He wants to know if she is prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice for their cause. Hesitant, Mystique thinks she is. Magneto is sad to say it, but than this is the moment where they have to part ways. And to conclude it, he welcomes his friends to the endgame.

Below, at the cells of the Triskelion…

Warren panics for Alison, as Deathstrike just struck her claws through her chest! As Warren calls out for help to the guards, Alison doesn’t know why he’s so worried, as she thought Dazzler liked getting pierced. Yuriko tells Warren to save his breath, confident that Fury and the others are probably to busy dealing with Thor and the other heavy hitters in this dungeon. She’s certain that nobody will come to their rescue. But on that very moment, Deathstrike’s neck gets snapped!

It’s Longshot! He claims that mutants look out after their own. Knowing that Yuriko is supposed to be indestructible, Arthur thinks he must have had a lucky shot. Warren is startled and picks Alison up, recognizing Longshot from before. Longshot explains that he owed Warren one for saving his life back on Krakoa, but suggests that they go try to find an exit now. Warren shouts at Longshot to stay away from them and flies away at top speed.

Suddenly, a voice tells Longshot that mutants don’t have to die. It’s Sinister. He rambles that all mutants who pledge alliance to his Lord Apocalypse, death is just another stage of evolution. Longshot isn’t impressed by the speech and tells Essex to keep rambling and then he might kill him. Longshot is approached by someone, and is surprised to meet the man.

Outside the Triskelion…

Northstar and Havok run towards the Triskelion, as Havok wants to go faster. But Jean-Paul is already running against gravity, and it isn’t like Lorna is going anywhere outside her cell. They find an entrance, but there Magneto and the others were already waiting for them!

Magneto lifts up some metallic parts from the building and wraps Northstar in them. Havok activates his powers and threatens Magneto to release his friend or else he’ll hurt him. Magneto asks Alex to power down. He appreciates it that they dealt with the Ultimates for them, but he warns Alex not to make another move or else Forge will snap Lorna’s neck. Havok warns that, if Lorna dies, Magneto and his buddy will be scraping up what’s left of him. Magneto is impressed by Havok and wishes that he would leave his textbooks behind, as he would make a fine addition to his Brotherhood. Alex doesn’t think so, but then Magneto grabs the boy by his throat.

The X-Men arrive. From their jet, Cyclops tells Magneto to release his brother, because if someone is going to kill him, it will be him. Jean tries to enter Magneto’s mind but fails to, suspecting his allies must have gotten his helmet out of storage somehow. Forge panics. Magneto calms him down, warning Forge to keep his infernal machine close to him and he’ll do the rest. At the plane, Wolverine’s claws move closer to his face, and he has the hardest time preventing them from killing him! Kurt doesn’t understand, as he thought Hank had shielded the X-Wing from Magneto’s attacks before his passing. Storm defends that Hank did, guessing Magneto must be using another wave frequency.

Magneto rips the entire X-Wing apart! Jean uses her powers to safe herself and grabs Scott in her arms. Storm grabs Wolverine but he is very heavy. Logan tells Storm to just drop him as he can survive the water, but Kitty can’t. Kitty has almost reached the water, but Bobby orders her to go tangible. Kitty does, and Iceman catches her into his arms! Kitty is surprised that Bobby bothered to save her, but he jokes that he guesses Spider-Man was too busy. He apologizes for cutting it so close, but the last thing he remembers is knocked out by the some girl who looked like Tinkerbell. Kitty smiles that Bobby is so cool. Heading towards the Triskelion, Bobby wonders if that means they are friends again, but Kitty suggests they wait with that, at least if they make it out of this battle alive.

The X-Men confront Magneto. Scott tells Storm to take care of everyone who flies and orders Kurt to teleport the hostages to safety. Alex warns Scott not to do that because he’ll get Lorna killed. Jean, telepathically taking over Forge’s mind, warns Havok that Lorna will be in good hands now that she’s controlling the King of All Tools here. Magneto orders Cyclops not to say anything more or else he’ll kill his brother! Cyclops, powering up, believes otherwise and that things are already over but that he just doesn’t know it yet. Magneto thinks Scott is the least threatening body around here because he thinks Scott can’t hurt him without hurting his brother.

Alex smiles that, for a guy claiming to want a brotherhood, doesn’t know much about brothers. Scott fires his optic blast, of course without hurting Alex and instead nocks Magneto down! Alex thanks Scott for the help, but not without mocking him and Scott does the same. Kitty, while helping out Northstar from his bonds, is confused and wants an explanation how this could happen. Kurt explains to her that Scott and Alex’s powers don’t affect one another and that one’s family can only hurt another if they let them. Lorna wakes up, and is thrilled to see Alex again and jumps into his arms, always having known that he would come for her. Jean walks over to Scott, sarcastically wondering if that’s jealousy she’s sensing. Scott smirks that he isn’t feeling anything, besides maybe a little sad for losing his plane.

Nick Fury enters, and orders his Howling Commandos to sedate Magneto and to put him in neural locks. He wants the other mutants to get away from his other prisoner. Lorna panics. She apologizes for what happened but refuses to be locked up again with that monster. Scott asks Fury to wait, defending that Lorna is innocent. Surprised, Lorna wants to know if that’s true. Scott explains that Lorna was framed, as the Professor contacted them on their way to the Triskelion and has information that exonerates her.

Fury knows that, as Xavier contacted him as well. But, he thinks that Havok might be guilty. Alex wants to know from what then, as he was only trying to help out an innocent woman. Fury explains that he just lost an entire platoon putting down a prison riot that could have been contained a long time ago, if Fury’s big guns hadn’t been busy trying to defeat Havok. Fury informs the boy that he’s under arrest for superhuman sedition, a crime that comes with a lifetime stay in Camp X-Factor.

Wolverine, emerging from the water, tells Fury to give it a rest. It was Magneto who killed his boys, not some stupid kid like Alex. But, Logan adds, Fury has got blood on his hands as well. Logan explains that if Fury hadn’t handed Lorna over to the Devil himself before he had all the facts, this entire thing might have gone differently. He thinks that the kids have suffered enough and wants Fury to let them go. Fury wants to know what’s going to happen if he refuses. Logan, with a serious look on his face, threatens that or else he’ll call the White House and inform them about the cave. Maybe, Logan thinks, Fury’s commander-in-chief would like to know what Fury had him do to that boy last year, without the president’s order to do it.

Hesitant, Fury agrees. He warns all of the mutants to get out of there, but tells them that they can tell Xavier that the X-Men’s relationship with SHIELD is over. From now on, they are enemies! And the next time they’ll meet, they’ll pay for it. Warren shows up, holding an unconscious Alison in his arms begging for help. Fury immediately calls out for a medic. Northstar doesn’t know who Alison is, but Jean-Paul introduces her to him, and Storm mentions that she’s one of them.

Westchester General Hospital, one week later…

Warren guards Alison’s sick bed, as she lies in a coma. Xavier comes in, telling Warren not to mourn for her yet, as he believes Alison still has a chance of waking up. Her mind’s voice is distant, but far from gone. Warren apologizes, as this time, it really was his fault and understands completely if the Professor wants to expel him from the Institute and off the team.

Xavier is glad to hear that. But, he won’t do exactly that. He explains to Warren that his expulsion is merely a front, an excuse for him to become one of his secret operatives, which he occasionally utilizes for delicate missions. Warren wants to know where he’s supposed to go undercover. Xavier wants Warren to travel to Emma’s Academy of Tomorrow. He thinks it’s clear Emma cannot be trusted to keep an eye on her students, so he wants Warren to do it. Warren tells Xavier that, if he agrees to do it, he wants him to promise that he reenrolls Alison if she ever wakes up, because he thinks she needs him, more than anyone. Xavier gives his word.

The Xavier Institute For Gifted Children…

Nightcrawler listens Colossus talking over the phone to Northstar. Peter had a killer headache for a few days, but Jean-Paul can tell Alex he’s got a thick skin and that there are no hard feelings. Peter knows that they were just doing whatever it took to protect their friends and can respect that. Jean-Paul asks Peter something, making him surprised, and wants to know when the thing takes place. Peter agrees to join Jean-Paul to it and wants him to e-mail all the details. They stop talking, and Peter wants Jean-Paul to tell Warren that they all miss him and promises to talk to Jean-Paul soon. Kurt wants to know what that was all about.

Peter smiles, and informs Kurt that Jean-Paul just asked him to come to the Homecoming dance with him! Kurt realizes that Peter is gay, and freaks out a little. Peter admits that, and tells Kurt that if a man, looking like he does, no longer has to hide in shadows, he thinks that should count as well for him. Kurt doesn’t know what to say and teleports away, leaving Peter wondering.

Suddenly, someone approaches Peter. It’s Rogue! Peter is surprised to really see her again. But, with half black eyes and red pupils and a French accent, Rogue admits that she’s still trying to figure out if it’s really her Peter’s seeing herself.

The Triskelion, Magneto’s plastic cell…

Quicksilver informs Magneto that he’s got a visitor, but Magneto doesn’t want to talk to Xavier. But it’s not Xavier who’s visiting him: it’s Emma! Emma tells Magneto to shut up, claiming she’s just there to tell him that, if he or one of his underlings ever come near one of her students again, she will make sure Magneto suffers before he dies. Charles may be against death penalty, but she sure isn’t.

Demonstrating her diamond powers to Magneto, Emma reminds the master of magnetism that his “epic plan” failed completely. That he’s now back in a box where he belongs, and that only a single lowlife escaped, and that’s just because he got lucky enough because the guy managed to slip through the cracks. “Magneto,” with glowing yellow eyes, thinks the guy must have really been fortunate indeed.

The Savage Land…

While dwelling through a tunnel, Longshot asks Magneto for an explanation. He can understand that Mystique started to impersonate Magneto after the breakout, but wants to know how she faked his powers. Magneto explains she did it with the same electromagnetic field generator Forge used to frame Polaris. Longshot finds that unbelievable. It’s an escape where the captors don’t even realize their prisoner is gone! He thinks Magneto is a genius.

Magneto thinks that may be the case, but also that escaping unnoticed would have been highly improvable without Longshot weighting the odds in his favor. Which is why his agents tipped off Fury to his whereabouts when his old equipment informed them of his presence in the Savage Land. Longshot is startled to hear Magneto is the reason he ended up in jail. Magneto explains that every move of a grandmaster’s game is played in his mind long before he achieves victory at the board.

Longshot is impressed, wanting to know what’s going to happen next. Will Magneto re-form the Brotherhood? Attack the White House? Kill every last human on the planet? Magneto denies he’ll be doing any of those things, as they are yesterday’s ideas. Climbing out of the sewers and entering the beautiful Savage Land jungle, he believes it’s time for something new.

Characters Involved: 

Angel, Colossus, Cyclops, Dazzler, Iceman, Marvel Girl, Nightcrawler, Professor X, Rogue, Shadowcat, Storm, Wolverine (all X-Men)

Emma Frost, Havok, Northstar, Polaris

Forge, Longshot, Magneto, Mystique

Deathstrike, Sinister (SHIELD prisoners)

Nick Fury

Fury’s Howling Commandos (all unnamed)

Story Notes: 

With this issue, the series takes a break for a month. Instead of immediately going over to issue #66, two apparent independent limited series are released in between: Ultimate Wolverine vs. Ultimate Hulk #1-6 and Ultimate X-Men vs. Ultimate Fantastic Four #1-2.

Included in this issue is also the second part to the storyline of “Ultimate Vision,” which takes place after Ultimate Secret #1-4.

Angel and Dazzler were part of the team that rescued Longshot from Krakoa in Ultimate X-Men #57.

Again, Sinister mentions the existence of Apocalypse. He temporarily revealed himself at the end of Ultimate X-Men #49, but at this point it is still unclear if that was just an imagination of Sinister’s unstable mind or the real deal.

Deathstrike’s mocking of the Ultimates dealing with Thor refers to events in Ultimates 2 #1-5, where SHIELD believed Thor to be a traitor to the team and arrested him. At this point, it’s still unclear if Thor truly is a traitor with an unstable mind, or if his evil half-brother Loki is twisting with reality making people believe what he wants them to.

Iceman and Kitty began dating as of Ultimate X-Men #57, but broke up when Kitty discovered that Bobby had still feelings for his ex-girlfriend, Rogue, in Ultimate X-Men #61. They had been avoiding each other’s presence since. Kitty began her relationship with Spider-Man in Ultimate Spider-Man Annual #1.

Beast was killed by Sentinels in Ultimate X-Men #44.

Bobby was defeated by the Wasp last issue. He makes the “Tinkerbell” joke, who’s a fictional character from the Peter Pan stories, because she too looks like a very tiny woman with wings on her back.

First mentioning of Nick Fury having his own Howling Commandos squad. In the 616
Universe, Fury had a special team of people under his control with the same group name during WWII. Those people were Dum Dum Dugan, Izzy Cohen, Gabe Jones, Dino Manelli, Percy Pinkerton and Reb Ralston. Currently, that team has been re-formed and now includes members such as Clay Quatermain, Gorilla Man, Vampire By Night, Warwolf and others. It’s unclear at this point if any of Fury’s soldiers have super-powers, though probably not as they appear to be normal humans.

Fury secretly had Wolverine kill a mutant boy whose powers it were to kill everyone standing nearby him in Ultimate X-Men #41. The friendship between the X-Men and the Ultimates started in Ultimate X-Men #33 though has been pending ever since.

Once again, Xavier reveals that he has a secret underground movement going on, which has first been hinted upon in Ultimate X-Men #58. In that issue, he recruited Syndicate for his underground, and in this issue, Angel.

Besides Sinister, Deathstrike, Longshot and Magneto, other prisoners of SHIELD include several enemies of Spider-Man, such as Dr. Octopus, Norman Osborn, the Sandman, Electro, Kraven the Hunter, plus Thor. According to Magneto, though unclear, all of them have now escaped but have yet to be proven to have actually done that.

The reason why Magneto suddenly has yellow eyes when Emma visits him in his cell is, of course, because Mystique is currently impersonating him, as the real Magneto later on explains.

Rogue finally returns to the Xavier Institute. She took off to spend time with her new beau, Gambit, to explore the world and take revenge on sister corporations of Fenris who tried to manipulate them into doing their bidding. However, as revealed in Ultimate X-Men Annual #1, upon stumbling across a love-struck Juggernaut, he became furious as he to had feelings for Rogue and wanted her to join him again. When she refused, he and Gambit fought each other but died when a giant construction site fell upon them both. To grant Remy’s final wish, Rogue gave him a kiss goodbye, though Gambit’s powers and part of his life essence floated inside her body.

In this issue, Colossus finally openly declares that he's gay. This has been a mystery dwelling on the minds of fans since Ultimate X-Men #15, where Colossus and Wolverine become apparently a bit more than just friends. Wolverine has since proven not to be gay, but Peter's part wasn't that clear until now.

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