X-Treme X-Men (1st series) #31

Issue Date: 
November 2003
Story Title: 
Intifada - part 1: This is the way the world ends

Chris Claremont (writer), Igor Kordey (artist), Scott Hanna (inked), Liquid! (colors), Randy Gentile (letterer), Annie Thornton (assistant editor), Mike Raicht (editor), Mike Marts (supervising editor), Joe Quesada (editor in chief), Bill Jemas (president)

Brief Description: 

A family drives down a highway in Los Angeles when they are distracted by a group of rebel mutants passing by them. Taking his eyes off the road, the father is too late to save his family as they crash off the side of the cliff, leaving only the daughter alive. Hours later, Marie, the daughter, is rushed to the hospital, where she overhears the disturbing news that the gang of mutants will most likely go unpunished. Elsewhere, a group of Guerrilla fighters, in Africa, gun down two relief workers, only to be killed themselves by a mutant claiming to be a survivor from Genosha. While these events transpire, in Texas, dignitaries from across the globe meet to discuss the ever-growing threat of the mutant population. It just so happens that Storm and Gambit are at this same meeting, in disguise, and they are troubled by what they hear coming from people they considered allies and confidants. Back in Los Angeles, Bishop intercedes in a police fight, where a young mutant boy dies because of an overdose of the drug called Rave. Behind the scene and unknown to Bishop, the only reason the local police did not arrest him was due to the interceding of Roberto Dacosta and his power over the X-Corp Branch in Los Angeles. Bishop and Sage, who joins him towards the end of the battle, leave the crime scene and happen upon Rogue, who is now calling herself Anna and working in a local garage. The three of them later go to a concert, where they meet Sam Guthrie, who is there to hear Lila Cheney’s concert. During the concert, Rogue and Sage notice a suspicious looking individual and the two of them find that the person is carrying a bomb, intent on murdering mutants.

Full Summary: 

On Molholland Drive in Los Angeles, California, the D’Ancanto family is discussing their oldest daughter’s interest in cheerleading, while driving towards home. Marie tells her parents that her friend, Buffy, is a cheerleader, so she wants to be one as well. Shockingly, a gang of mutants blasts by their van, vandalizing it and causing George, the father, to lose control of the vehicle. Marie screams out for her father to watch the road as the van goes sailing through a nearby guardrail and plummets down the cliff. In tears and pain, Marie crawls from the wreckage, grasping her brother in her lap screaming, because her family is no more.

Elsewhere, half way around the world, men from the Doctors Without Frontiers Relief Aid beg to a group of rebels that has taken over the Gorold Airfield in East Africa to allow them the ability to deliver medicine to a nearby refugee camp. The Guerrilla fighters ask the doctor why they should care? With that said, the men kill the aid workers and the fighter’s leader tells the others to grab the medical supplies. Questioning the others, one soldier speaks up and asks if anyone knows how to fly a plane? As the soldiers ponder what to do next, a young woman walks up to them and tells the Guerrilla fighters that she has come from the refugee camp. One of the men speaks up and tells her that they were there first, but if she is willing to “play” with them he might consider letting her have some of the supplies. The smiling woman’s eyes begin to glow and, suddenly, her face is awash in the same glow. She tells the others, as they writhe in pain, that she is a mutant from Genosha and, just as her nation died, it is now their turn.

Back in Los Angeles the young orphan named Marie D’Ancanto lies in a gurney located in the County Hospital. She overhears a detective and her Uncle discuss the mutant’s that caused the accident. She is painfully aware that the detective is backed into a corner, because he doesn’t think he can convict anyone due to the mass mutant population in their area and the fear of an uproar. The detective gives her uncle a word of advice and that is to contact the X-Corp branch in the area and request assistance from them. As a tear runs down Marie’s face, she hears her uncle tell the detective that X-Corp only helps mutants, not the people they terrorize.

Neal Conan, a reporter with NPR and a friend to the X-Men is at President Bush’s Ranch in Texas for a barbeque that seems to have attendees of the powerful sort. These attendants are the Prime Minister of Great Britain, the President of Russia, the Premier of China (among other world leaders) and high-ranking officers from those countries.

Inside the ranch home, Inspector Baltimore is entering a doorway that a disguised Gambit is trying to exit. The two bump into one another and Gambit apologizes for his clumsiness. Baltimore introduces herself and questions the gentleman; why he is in a classified part of the house? Gambit, hastily making his way from the inspector, tells her that he realizes that and his boss is waiting on him. Inspector Baltimore glares at the departing stranger with a look of almost curiosity, as to whether she has seen the strange man before.

Hours later, Dr. Valerie Cooper introduces herself as the National Security Advisor for Parahuman Affairs to a large group of dignitaries. Behind Valerie plays a projection of the original five X-Men and their mentor, Professor Xavier. She talks about a time in the past when the world only believed their to be a handful of mutants on its shores. She goes on to say that in those times the world coped by thinking that the good guys out numbered the bad and would always be there to save them. After those words, another picture projects behind Dr. Cooper. This time, the picture is of the X-Men as they are today, coupled with the hundreds of students at the Xavier Institute. She tells the assembly that mutants have grown in numbers since a decade ago when there was only a handful.

Valerie places another picture on the projector and goes on to say that mutants today are more assertive and they strive to build their own communities, resulting in violence and conflict. A member of the assembly speaks up and asks Valerie if it is still true that Xavier’s commitment to helping mutants still gives them the ability to only think of the letter “X” when they are in danger and trained X-Corp members will be there to save the day. Valerie answers the British Prime Minister’s question by telling him that it was their first presumption to believe this but, after the recent outburst of violence at Xavier’s on school grounds, they can’t be certain Xavier can live up to his word. She explains that, before, most villainous mutants were adults and they could be defeated, because of their traditional attacks and other actions. She goes on to say, as a picture of Kid Omega and his friends that rallied with him flashes behind her, that the new generation of mutant villains are teenagers and more imaginative with their actions and extremely unpredictable. She finishes her speech by telling the assembly that, after the attack on Genosha, the mutants were proved right in thinking that they had the right to fear base-line humans. She tells them, “like it or not…the battle lines have already been drawn.”

While the speech continues, Gambit is in a nearby room and watches a projection of the proceedings on a highly technologically advanced laptop. Gambit hears the president speak up and ask if she is talking about making mutants criminals just because their mutants? Remy isn’t able to hear the rest of the speech, as he feels the gold metal of a pistol atop his skull. Smiling, Remy tells Inspector Baltimore that it is not nice to sneak up on folks. Baltimore tells Remy that she knows who he is and it is not nice for him to listen in on private conversations. She begins to inform Remy that he is under arrest, but she is not able to finish, as Ororo strikes her from behind with electricity, knocking the Inspector unconscious. Ororo is also in disguise and she chides Remy for getting caught. The two allies drag the inspector’s body to a nearby corner and then split off to another room in the Ranch with the laptop Remy was using earlier. He tells Ororo that the speech he heard was very disturbing. As the two of them walk, President Bush happens to pass by them and he congratulates Ororo, who he assumes to be Halle Berry, on her recent appearance in a James Bond flick. He also tells Ororo that he hopes he sees more of her and his cook out. Ororo removes her black wig, as the president leaves, and Remy smirks about the event that just transpired.

Once again in Los Angeles, Bishop is thrown into a fight, as he happens on a scene where a mutant is going out of control. Vans are exploding right and left and the local police do not know what to make of it. Suddenly, their Sergeant yells for them to evacuate the area. That’s when Bishop comes in and dives onto the Sarge, as he is inches away from being killed by a stray plasma blast. Lucas talks as he carries the officer to safety and tells him that, today, he is lucky, because he still gets to go home and see his wife and kids. Bishop is continuing to get blasted by the plasma from his unknown assailant and he talks to himself that the force is a level four and that’s on the Havok scale. Suddenly, a tremendous plasma blast sends him crashing into a police cruiser and, shockingly, the nearby officers hold their guns aimed towards him. A nearby high-ranking officer commands the Sarge to cuff Bishop and the officer tries to question his commander. Commander Kneisel is only stopped when he receives a phone call from the Mayor, telling him to let Bishop go. Kneisel hangs up the phone and, with gritted teeth, tells Bishop that he is free to act in whatever manner might be necessary to stop their perp.

At the X-Corp building in Los Angeles, Roberto Dacosta hands his cellphone to Empath, who stands behind Roberto. Roberto had just got off the phone with the mayor of L.A. and he just convinced him to let Bishop take care of the mutant threat. Empath questions Roberto’s enthusiasm, because Bishop may lose and that would be bad for the image of X-Corp. Roberto tells him to relax, because Bishop is an X-Men. He tells Empath that his job is to make the media believe that X-Corp was the mutants that saved the day.

Back at the crime scene, Bishop is requesting aid from Sage, who is nearby monitoring the situation. She informs him of the perp’s location and Bishop sets out to engage the mutant threat. He continues to get blasted, but he feels something strange. He tells sage that it seems the attacker’s plasma energy is getting weaker. Coming up to the attacker Bishop screams for a medic.

Minutes later, a young boy is loaded into a body bag, as Bishop investigates the scene. He informs a nearby officer that the child was high on Rave and the drug made his powers burn out of control. Without getting to finish his briefing, Commander Kneisel bursts on to the scene, demanding Bishop leave before he throws him in jail. Bishop does as he is asked and goes to find his destroyed Motorcycle. Walking up to it, Sage meets him and tells him that she has heard about a wiz mechanic nearby and the person may be able to fix his bike.

In Valle Soleada (or Freakville, as graffiti on the welcome sign says), Lucas and Sage pull up to a garage where the owner introduces them to his mechanic, a girl named Anna. Anna is in fact Rogue and she comes walking from the garage in a mechanic’s shirt with extremely short cut-off jeans on. She also appears to be wearing the same tattoos that a young mutant named Paint adorned her with months ago. Rogue jumps into Bishop’s arms and kisses him square on the lips. He holds her off the ground, as she explains to them that her powers seem to be completely gone. She then asks Sage if she would enjoy a hug, but Sage declines Anna’s offer. Rogue tells Sage that she can continue to scan her all she wants, but it won’t prove anything that she hasn’t already learned the hard way.

Later that night, Rogue has taken her friends back to her and Gambit’s house, where they inquire Rogue about Remy’s whereabouts. She tells them that Remy left on “Family” business and hasn’t returned yet. Bishop, seemingly teasing manner wonders who it is that is being robbed? Rogue is in her shower and she continues to talk to them and agrees with Bishop’s assumption. Bishop walks out onto the deck, where Sage is sitting. She tells Lucas that her scans prove that Rogue’s genome is still scrambled, as well as her memories, but she knows for a fact that Rogue’s powers did not harm Bishop earlier.

After Rogue’s shower, the three friends stroll down the boardwalk, as Rogue takes Bishop and Sage to a Lila Cheney concert. Bishop questions Rogue on her happiness and she tells him that her and Remy are trying to be happy, but she couldn’t think of a better place to be than California. Once at the bar, the three friends meet up with Sam Guthrie. As he peers into Sage’s eyes, Bishop begins to wander if their coincidence of meeting Rogue wasn’t such a coincidence at all. The friends sit at a nearby table as they prepare to listen to Lila’s concert. Years of battles have made them all better alert and lucky for the audience attending the concert Rogue and Sage recognize a heavy coated woman, rigged with explosives. As Rogue pulls back the attacker’s coat, she reveals a female with a trigger in her hand yelling “DEATH TO MUTANTS!”

Characters Involved: 

Bishop, Cannonball, Sage, Storm, (all X-Treme X-Men)

Empath & Sunspot (X-Corp L.A. Divisions)

Gambit (X-Treme X-Men ally)

Lila Cheney (X-Treme X-Men ally)

Rogue (X-Treme X-Men ally)

Brother, George, Marie, Uncle, Wife D’Ancanto

Detective-Inspector Baltimore

Doctor Valerie Cooper

Doctors Without Frontiers Relief Workers

Jack and Paint (Mutant civilians in Valle Soleada, California)

Leaders From Around the Globe

Los Angeles County Hospital Doctor

Los Angeles Police Detective and Police Officers

Mermaid Bar and Grill Customers and Employees

Neal Conan


Secret Service Agents

East African Guerrilla Soldiers

Mutant Woman from Genosha

Video Screen

President George W. Bush


Rebel Mutants


Professor X

Angel, Beast, Cyclops, Iceman, Marvel Girl (original five X-Men)

The X-Men and the Students at the Xavier Institute

Valerie Cooper

Story Notes: 

The James Bond “flick” the president refers to is Tomorrow Never Dies and he mistakes Ororo for being the actress Halley Berry. This joke doubles as a reference to the X-Men movies, where the character of Storm was also played by Halley Berry.

Rogue and Remy first learned of Valle Soleada in X-Treme X-Pose #1. In that same issue Paint gave Rogue her tattoo

Bishop’s comment about Gambit robbing someone is due to the fact that his stepfamily is the Thieves Guild in New Orleans.

Rogue has a poster of the movie "The Piano" in the
house. Anna Paquin, who plays Rogue in the movies,
won an acadamy award for best supporting actress for
playing the daughter in the movie.

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