X-Men: Red #3

Issue Date: 
June 2018
Story Title: 
The Hate Machine – part 3: Rising Storm
Staff: 

Tom Taylor (writer), Mahmud Asrar (artist), Ive Svorcina (colorist), Ryan Stegman & Ive Svorcina  (Where’s Wolverine page artists), VC’s Cory Petit (letterer), Travis Charest (main cover artist), Dan Mora & Marci Menyz (New Mutants variant cover), Travis Charest and Tamra Bonvillain (headshot variant artists),  Jay Bowen, Anthony Gambino & Carlos Lad (graphic designers), Chrstina Harrington & Annalise Bissa (assistant editors), Mark Paniccia & Jordan D. White (editors), C.b: Cebulski (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)
X-Men created by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby

Brief Description: 

In Delhi, Jean Grey’s team battles both a Sentinel and an anti-mutant mob, some of whom are strangely resistant to Jean’s telepathy. When Trinary witnesses Honey Badger being killed, she is angry enough to take over the Sentinel with her power. Luckily, thanks to her healing factor, the injury proves to be no big deal for Honey Badger. Trinary and Jean realize that the human attackers are running under a similar more complex version of the program the Sentinel has. In order to get out without hurting anyone, Trinary has the Sentinel fly them away, towards Wakanda. However, in the meantime, Cassandra Nova has snuck into the X-mansion, killed a sensitive boy named Kyle who noticed her and infected Storm with the programming. Storm then faces Jean’s team over Wakanda, ready to kill them. In a town in Louisiana, Gambit interferes when an anti-mutant rally tries to kill a winged mutant girl named Kara, who faces them. Unfortunately, Cara is shot and killed by one of the mob members.

Full Summary: 

The Xavier Institute, Central Park:
Nighttime:|
Cassandra Nova simply enters. She walks past an arguing Kitty Pryde and Colossus, making sure they do not notice her. Who does notice her, though, is a sensitive young boy named Kyle. The boy studies her and announces Cassandra is scared of her, isn’t she? She muses no one should have been able to detect her. Imagine what he could have become. She kills him with one gesture.

She enters a bedroom where an X-Man lies sleeping and takes a vial from her pocket. Go protect Wakanda! she orders.

Delhi, India, outside the HQ of the Mutant Defense Forces:
Jean Grey and her team are battling a Sentinel, as well as several humans who seem immune to Jean’s telepathy. Jean tells her team to keep moving and not let the Sentinel target them. She tells Honey Badger to get Trinary under cover and Nightcrawler to teleport Wolverine up into the air to her.

They comply and Laura slashes the Sentinel’s head. Gabby drags Trinary away, pointing out that letting her be squashed by a Sentinel would look bad for their rescue mission. She swears and pushes Trinary aside a moment before a blast that was meant for Trinary hits Gabby. Trinary is horrified and furious. She uses her power and orders the Sentinel to sit. It obeys.

Wow! Gabby comments. Trinary is shocked. Isn’t she dead? Aren’t those her intestines? Gabby apologizes and proceeds to push them back inside. Never mind her. What did she do?

Jean explains Trinary took control of the Sentinel. Laura wonders how that works. Isn’t the whole programming of a Sentinel to kill mutants? Trinary explains most of the program is dedicated to finding mutants. It can still do that but she has removed the killing. If she wanted to, she could reprogram it to find mutants and cook them a light meal. Gabby is up for it.

Nightcrawler asks about the protesters Jean has frozen. She explains she can’t reach a part of their minds. Trinary reveals that the program that is running in the Sentinel is also running inside of them.

Trinary nervously examines one of Jean’s prisoners and explains the operating system in the Sentinel isn’t as complex, but basically it is the same. Kurt asks if the protester is a robot. Human, Jean replies, but there is something else as well.

Jean asks Trinary if she can turn it off. It’s not that easy, is the reply. Gabby scoffs, she just took control of a giant robot. Running a simplified program from years ago, Trinary informs them. And not inside a living person’s head! She’d need time.

Kurt fears they don’t have time. Between the giant killing machine, the unconscious angry mob and the whole destruction, their covert action isn’t so covert anymore. Jean has an idea on how to get out of there. And soon the Sentinel under Trinary’s control flies them away.

Wolverine asks Trinary how she was found. She replies hesitatingly that they said her father turned her in. Kurt suggests they may have been lying. They weren’t, she replies, eyes down cast. Jean tells her she is sorry. Nobody should face persecution from the people who are supposed to love them unconditionally.

Trinary replies she saw Jean’s speech at the UN. Does she still believe this is possible, even after everything that happened? Jean does. They’ll start planning as soon as they are back in Wakanda. They’ll have a hurdle or two in their way, but they will get back there.

Trinary replies this is more than a hurdle and offers to show her. Does anyone have a phone? Gabby hands her her phone and wants to tell her her password. “Jonathan rules” with ‘z,’ Trinary replies.

Trinary explains she’s been monitoring the rise of anti-mutant propaganda in social media. Their feeds are being filled with this. Stories of mutant violence and accidents. Half-truths taken out of context or outright lies. It’s spiked over the last month. Algorithms targeting people with known biases and concerns. Stoking this into fear. Turning the fear into hatred. And a little hit of dopamine every time someone “likes” a post filled with intolerance. It’s all coordinated. She believes the human race is being programmed to hate mutants.

In a town in Louisiana, an anti-mutant mob with tiki torches marches through town. There are protesters one the others side as well, one of them a winged young mutant named Cara. Her friend tells her not to do anything. It’s not worth it. Cara flies off and lands in front of the protesters. One of them addresses her as mutie. Her name is Cara, she replies. No it isn’t, the man shoots back. Names are for important things like people and dogs. She doesn’t get a name. He is about to hit her with the tiki torch when someone holds it back.

It is Gambit who pretends to be shocked at the price. Two garden torches for $12.99? So this is how they afforded the crowd scenes in Frankenstein? He tells Cara she can fly away. She retorts these are her streets, too. He warns her not to get singed, charges up the torch and quickly touches the other torches carried by the protesters doing the same.

The people are shocked and run and Cara admits that was incredibly satisfying.

Gambit suggests to a racist in a truck that he leave like his friends. They can’t call themselves a mob if they don’t stick together. Instead, the man calmly gets out of the truck and trains a gun on them. “Mutant,” he states and fires his gun. Gambit fires a charged card at him.

When a young man shouts Cara’s name, Gambit is horrified to see that the bullet struck and killed the young woman.

En route to Wakanda, a bored Gabby asks if they are there yet. They are flying through the air on a giant robot, Kurt points out. Can’t she just enjoy the ride? Definitely, she replies. Are they there yet? They are almost there, he replies and begs her to stop asking. Trinary asks if anybody reached out to the Wakandans and warned them they are arriving in a giant killing machine.  Jean tries to telepathically contact the Black Panther.

Laura notices a storm gathering over Wakanda and quickly realizes that it is Storm. Protect Wakanda! Storm chants. “Abominations!” she hisses then fires lightning at the Sentinel.

Characters Involved: 

Jean Grey, Honey Badger, Nightcrawler, Trinary Wolverine II (Jean’s X-Men team)
Colossus, Gambit, Kitty Pryde, Storm (other X-Men)

Cara

Cassandra Nova
Anti-mutant mob

Story Notes: 

Jonathan is Honey Badger’s pet Wolverine.

Written By: