X-Men (3rd series) #15

Issue Date: 
September 2011
Story Title: 
“First to Last” conclusion

Christopher Yost (writer), Paco Medina (penciler-now), Dalabor Talajic (penciler/inker-then), Juan Vlasco (inker-now), Marte Gracia (colorist-now), Wil Quintana (colorist-then), VC’s Joe Caramagna (letterer), Ed McGuinness, Dexter Vines & Val Staples (cover), Paco Medina, Juan Vlasco & Marte Gracia (variant cover), Jordan D. White (assistant editor), Daniel Ketchum (associate editor), Axel Alonso & Nick Lowe (editors), Axel Alonso (editor in chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)

Brief Description: 

In the not-so-distant past, the X-Men arrive at the Institute just in time to put a stop to Magneto’s plans for planet-wide human extinction. Prior to the battle, Beast created a device that could separate the Evolutionaries from their cosmic power, and he uses it in order to prevent the genocide. It has the unexpected effect of killing all of the Evolutionaries but one. Scott makes a deal with the survivor that he and the X-Men will always be around to protect mutantkind. The Evolutionary promises to return one day to check on how he does. However, he must make them all forget these past two days since what they do is forbidden and so everyone forgets the Evolutionaries. In the present, the weapon Jeffries recreated is complete and Scott has him use it. All of the Evolutionaries are killed again, except for their leader. He finally gives up and teleports away, but his thirst for vengeance against Cyclops still lives on.

Full Summary: 

Then: Xavier Institute

The window of the Cerebro room shatters inward courtesy of Cyclops’ optic blast. Both he and Angel dive right through the opening and begin the attack. First, Scott nails one of the Evolutionaries, knocking it to the floor. Then, Warren piledrives Mastermind into the ground, while simultaneously knocking Toad into the wall.
Magneto tenses up, and metallic objects begin to levitate nearby. He can’t believe Cyclops to be so deluded as to attack his own kind in the defense of humans. He claims humans would burn them all and offers Scott one last chance to side with him.
Scott tells Magneto he’s wrong, and supposes Xavier might be wrong as well, but argues there has to be another way to dealing with it. Magneto’s more than ready to continue the argument, but then he realizes the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver have turned on him. Wanda says they won’t stand idly by while he destroys an entire species.
Even more furious, Magneto rips metal from the walls and the floors and sends it at them. Scott manages to blast a few pieces, but Warren gets nailed in the head, and Wanda gets knocked out by some concrete.
The Evolutionaries bear witness to Magneto battling his own kind, fighting his own team members. Despite Erik’s protests, the Evolutionaries no longer believe he speaks for mutantkind.
Now: Utopia

Now that Magneto remembers everything from the past the Evolutionary offers him another chance to lead mutantkind. Magneto explains he now understands his past mistakes, which cost him his children, everything. He tosses a bunch of debris the Evolutionary’s way, a physical act to decline the Evolutionary’s request.
Then: Xavier Institute

Jean, Bobby and the Professor arrive on the scene, and with Erik not wearing his helmet Charles makes short work of him with a mental blast. Xavier next addresses the Evolutionaries and asks them to reconsider the extinction of the human race.
Now: Utopia

The Evolutionary struggles to his feet, still reeling from Magneto’s attack. Scott tells him there can be no future for mutantkind without humanity. He says exterminating the human race would kill them all. The Evolutionary reminds him he asked for this, that despite his brothers’ deaths he listened to Scott.
Seeing no end to the debate Emma cautions Scott the Evolutionary is never going to stop. Scott agrees, and tells her to patch him in with Jeffries. When he reaches him he asks for the device. Madison says it’s ready, but isn’t sure what will happen, reminding him of what McCoy’s machine did the first time. Scott sternly assures him he knows what it did.
Then: Xavier Institute

The Evolutionaries’ response to Xavier’s plea is an outward blast of energy that knocks everyone to the ground. Once again, they proclaim their path is set and that they only need a leader to emerge. Scott has heard enough and tells Hank to go through with it.
Henry approaches them with some sort of device in hand. He tells them he wishes they weren’t bent on genocide as he’d like to ask them 42 questions, but currently he’s only interested in the answer to one, “what happens when you’re forcibly separated from cosmic rays?”
Hank activates the device and a machine strums to life. A yellow energy beam appears and sucks out the cosmic forces from the Evolutionaries’ bodies. Three of them drop to the ground, empty husks. Hank recoils in horror, not thinking it would cause their deaths.
Only one Evolutionary stands, and he blasts Henry with what little energy he can muster. With his brethren murdered for only trying to save mutantkind he proclaims he’s had enough.
Now: Utopia

His patience wearing thin, the Evolutionary knocks everybody back with a powerful blast. He reminds them all that a lesser species wants them all dead because they fear them, and has hunted them down to near extinction. He asks them incredulously why they would want to protect humankind.
From his position lying on the ground Scott blasts the Evolutionary in the face plate, saying he’d die for them. The face plate cracks, revealing the Australopithecus underneath. He rushes Cyclops and grabs him by the throat. He tells Scott they both want the same thing, his death.
Then: Xavier Institute

Scott pleads with the remaining Evolutionary to let them be, to leave the innocent people of the world alone. The Evolutionary warns there will be a day where mutantkind will evolve and then they will come for the lesser mutants. He tells Scott mutants lack leadership.
Scott says he’ll lead them, he just wants more time. He doesn’t want things to go down like this. The Evolutionary warns him the humans will kill them all. Scott says he won’t let them, that the X-Men will stop whatever is thrown at them. He asks for the Evolutionary to let him show they’ve evolved beyond the need for their “help.”
Now: Utopia

The Evolutionary says he no longer cares if mutantkind has a leader, as long as it’s not Cyclops. He figures someone will rise to the occasion out of the mutants left, and with that he starts the process of killing all of humanity. People all across the world start to cry out in agony, including Kavita Rao who’s inside the X-Lab.
Then: Xavier Institute

The Evolutionary agrees to Scott’s terms, but says he will prepare in case Scott fails. A weird energy begins emanating from the Evolutionary so Scott asks what he’s doing. The Evolutionary explains that what they do is forbidden by the Eternals so they must hide their presence and make everyone forget they were ever there.
Scott asks what will happen to him. The Evolutionary says he will recover from the effects of the Beast’s weapon and his mind will never recreate it. “You will all forget, but one day, we will return.” This last sentence spoken by the Evolutionary scares Jean and she sends a telepathic urging for Scott to remember everything.
Now: Utopia

“Madison, now!!” Cyclops yells. Inside the X-Lab, Madison activates the machine. Instantly, Evolutionaries across the island die. The leader falls to the ground and his armor falls off. He starts making animal sounds, incapable of human speech. Then the suit comes back together. He says it’s impossible, that Beast is gone and he erased their minds.
Scott answers him with a lengthy optic blast. The Evolutionary can only ask why, for the gods sent them to save their species. Scott tells him once again they’re not needed as mutantkind has the X-Men. The Evolutionary recalls the Eternal telling him they would be loved, and seen as saviors. Frustrated to no end, he tells Cyclops he does not deserve saving, he deserves to burn. And with that said, he teleports away.
With the threat finally ended Emma asks what’s to keep the Evolutionary from trying that again. “Us,” Scott answers matter-of-factly. Logan worries he’s made one major enemy. Without hesitation, Cyclops says he’ll update their records then.
Nearby, Bobby and Warren discuss Scott’s drastic measures to stop the Evolutionaries. Warren says the alternative was worse, but Bobby asks what they’ve become. “This isn’t how it was supposed to be,” he argues.
Then: Essex Clinic

Emma Frost awoke in the clinic as if nothing had ever happened, but her mind was finally clear. She took issue with her prior mistreatment.
Then: Brotherhood HQ

The next thing Magneto and his crew knew they were back in their headquarters. Magneto was angry, but why, he didn’t know. They remembered nothing, but could feel the end of the Brotherhood was near.
Then: Xavier Institute

The X-Men were returned to the school with no memories of the past two days. They would soon be confronted by Sentinels for the “first” time.
Scott is brooding by a window with Jean. He asks if she ever thinks about the future, about the future of mutantkind. No, she admits, but she does worry about Scott. Why, he asks. She says he puts too much pressure on himself, but then adds she would never worry about the future of mutantkind because she knows he’d always be there to save them.
Now: Africa

In some cave the Evolutionary waits. Although he could probably still fulfill his mission and kill humanity in his weakened state, he no longer cares. He wants to go against everything he stands for, everything he would protect and kill a mutant named Cyclops.

Characters Involved: 


Angel, Colossus, Cyclops, Emma Frost, Iceman, Magneto, Namor, Prodigy, Storm, Wolverine (all X-Men)

Madison Jeffries, Dr. Rao (all X-Club)

Angel, Beast, Cyclops, Iceman, Marvel Girl, Professor X (all X-Men)

Emma Frost
Magneto, Mastermind, Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch, Toad (all Brotherhood of Evil Mutants)


Story Notes: 

Chronologically speaking, the X-Men fought their first Sentinel in Giant Size X-Men (3rd series) #1. However, since the Evolutionaries wiped their memories their first encounter as far as they (and we) knew took place in X-Men (1st series) #14.

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