After a manic 2018, where we launched our very own Avengers-related site, we settled into an equally busy 2019 that saw us not only do two theme months but also TWO event months. I'm not entirely sure how we managed to pull all that off. In case any of you missed out on any of the content we threw at you, here is a handy article summarising it all.
The very first release of the year was on a character hyped up in the 90's but was pretty much forgotten the moment we hit the 00's, Siena Blaze. The next release though was a character with a much richer history and whose inclusion on the site marked the final release of the "big name" Alpha Flight characters, Heather Hudson aka Vindicator II. After that we switched things up with a team entry on a lesser-known group, Supreme Soviets / People's Protectorate. Our final two entries for the month were updates based on the a storyline from the recent Cable series. First up was Gideon, the mysterious member of the Externals who proved to be the main antagonist of the storyline. Whilst we were at it we also updated the main Externals team entry to accommodate their new status-quo.
Much like Cloak and Dagger, the next character we spotlighted had skirted on the edges of the mutant-world but never really joined the ranks. That changed after M-Day when Typhoid Mary, was revealed to be a mutant, even though she still kept her distance from the X-Men. Her (brief) turn as a member of the Sisterhood during X-Men (4th series) was all we needed to get a spotlight made on her. Our next entry was also a female-powerhouse, who had cemented herself as the breakout star from the Generation X team. Monet Yvette Clarisse Maria Therese St. Croix, aka M II, had not only been a mainstay of X-Factor, but also went on to join various squads on the main X-Men team. We turned to another lesser-known team for our next entry, Exiles / Siberforce, which comprised up of the Winter Guard, as well as the People's Procterate. February's last release was on the X-Statix member, El Guapo, who like main of his fellow team-members before him met an untimely death.
It had almost been a year since we launched MightyAvengers.net, and with the release of the first Captain Marvel film we siezed the opportunity to do an informal tie-in to celebrate both occasions. Taking inspiration from both the film and the comics, we gave you a month of all-things Captain Marvel related. First up was a spotlight on one of the antagonists from the film, Ronan the Accusor, who'd also had numerous run-ins with the various Captain Marvels in the comics over the years. Next up was one of the few crossovers featuring Carol Danvers that hadn't already been summarised on UncannyXMen.net, the Black Vortex. The relatively recent crossover saw Carol's version of Captain Marvel cross paths (and swords) with both the X-Men and Guardians of the Galaxy.
We couldn't do a Captain Marvel event month without spotlighting one of the many characters to take up the mantle. As we had only recently updated Carol's version, we looked to the man who started off the legacy, Mar-Vell. As part of the package we also released an article that detailed the Legacy he left since his death. As mentioned above, UncannyXMen.net already had many detailed summaries of Captain Marvel related crossovers, but for this event we decided to dust a few off, refresh the images and add them to our new site. So with that in mind, the Maximum Security and Live Kree or Die events once again got the attention they deserved.
It was time for another Captain Marvel to get a spotlight, and this time it was on Noh-Varr aka Marvel Boy VII. Another relatively new character, he had recently found a new audience with the Young Avengers. After that it was time to focus on one of the main alien races that linked all the Captain Marvels together, the Kree. Not only were they a force to be reckoned with in the comcis, they were one of the primary races in the Captain Marvel film. Not wanting our X-Men site to be left out in the cold for the month, we spotlighted Corsair next, who was an ally to Carol Danvers during her Binary days. The final release was on the Alpha Flight Space Program, a new branding for Canada's superhero team, which Carol was now the head of. With the first event of the year done with the staff breathed a sigh of relief....and then began working diligently on the next one.
As we were coming straight from an event month we did a more subtle April Fool's joke this year by switching the logos on both sites around to see if anyone would notice. We eventually reverted them back to the way they should be and prepared for the month's first release, an update to Strong Guy. As a long-time member of X-Factor, Guido had stacked up a fair amount of storylines since his spotlight was originally written, but when he was killed off a few months before we knew it was the perfect time to get him up to date. Next up was another of the X-Men's allies from the 80's and 90's who had seemingly vanished off the face of the Earth. After briefly showing up in X-Men Gold we jumped on the chance to spotlight Stevie Hunter and remind the fans why she was so awesome. We are always trying to find excuses to update some of our older non-spotlight articles, and a recent appearance by the Nasty Boys gave us a reason to focus on their team entry. Lastly, for this month's Avengers release we looked towards another fan favourite, Arachne. As a member of the West Coast Avengers and an ally to the X-Men, Julia Carpenter earned a place on both sites.
May was a somewhat munumental month for our X-Men site in that it was the time Monolith finally buckled and did a spotlight on a character from the Ultimate Universe. Up till now the alternate reality had been relegated to the "Alternate Versions" section on a spotlight, but with the introduction of Jimmy Hudson Jr to the main Marvel universe the Ultimate universe finally had it's first character to qualify for a spotlight. Next up was one of Jimmy's fellow alternate-reality teammates from the X-Men Blue team, only this one had a much more fascinating history. Originally conceived as a vampiric version of Storm from the Mutant X timeline, Bloodstorm would go on to become a firm fan favourite. A slightly different version briefly joined the main X-Men team before being tragically killed off a few months later. Staying on the theme of recent stories, we also released a team entry on one of the more modern versions of the Brotherhood, the future version as seen in the Battle of the Atom crossover. The last entry for the month was a notable one in that it spotlighted another villainous team whose entire re-emergence answered a 20-year dangling mystery. Having first appeared during the Inferno crossover in the late 1980's, a group of infants were saved from the clutches of evil and seemingly to the government so that they could be cared for. The real outcome was much more tragic and the re-formed New Mutants ended up fighting the now-adult Inferno Babies, who had become twisted versions of who they should have been.
As we made our through the Spring, the X-titles were going through a shake-up and it was becoming notable how many characters were being killed off. We thought we would get in on the action by spotlighting and updating many of the dearly departed in our first theme month for the year. The first character to be released was Onyxx, a student who died during the Necrosha event a few years before. Next was a character who had only just died in the comics and whose final issue would turn out to be a rather heartbreaking one. With the power of precognition, Blindfold would see no way out for her other than a gruesome death and so she chose to end her life before someone else did it for her. After that it was another rapid-fire update on Gateway, who had remained a steadfast ally to the X-Men, even in his final moments. Mimic was next on our list, having only just been killed on during the Extermination crossover a few months before. We cheated a little bit with the next character, Box, who technically had been since his spotlight was originally written. However, a minor revelation about him having a son was all we needed to refresh his spotlight and remind you all about him. The final release in our Death month was a much bigger spotlight on a long-time X-ally who met her end during a bloody war. Lilandra, had been the Empress of the Shi'ar Empire for many years, but a coup by her sister Deathbird and the newly emerged Vulcan saw de-throned. After leading a rebellion to try and put an end to Vulcan's rule she met her end, throwing the whole of the Empire into chaos.
We realised early on in June that there were A LOT of dead characters who needed some attention, so we rolled our theme out for a second month and Diamond Lil was the first character to be updated. Like Onyxx, she was also a victim of Selene's attack on Utopia during the Necrosha crossover and her update was sadly too brief. Following that was another update to a character who had only just died in the comics, Joseph. We had updated him only a few years before when he was resurrected, but his death at the hands of Kwannon in the recent Uncanny series warrented a further update. After that we turned out attention to some new content and released a spotlight on Avalanche. Despite being around for 35 years he was still a relative blank slate, with his death in Uncanny Avengers being one of the more memorable moments. Since Alpha Flight members seem to exist to get killed off, it was only natural wet spotlight yet another of their fallen members with Nemesis III. The final release of the month was perhaps the most tragic, Tier Sinclair. His birth signalled the start of an otherworldly competition between the various Lords of Hell and it was only with his detah that a winner would be declared. In the end his fate was sealed by a supposed ally, who cut him down and took the mantle of Lord of Hell.
After two months of death-related articles we switched it up for August with an update on someone who has been missing for many years, but had recently shown up alive and well. Threnody, an ally to Nate Grey in the 90's, hadn't been heard of since mysteriously disappearing into the night with a newborn child. She would eventually turn up many years later in the pages of Deadpool, answering many of the dangling plot threads surrounding the baby. After that we focused on a relatively new team that had gained many fans but who haven't been seen much since their inception. The Children of the Vault quickly became fan-favourites but they quickly vanished into obscurity again. That could all change soon though with the appearance of one of them in the latest X-Men title.
It was UncannyXMen.net's birthday again and this year we turned 19. To celebrate we chose to update the five spotlights on the original X-Men, whose time-travelling teenage versions had finally gone back home, closing the loop and allowing us to draw a line under the saga. First up was Iceman, a character who had gone through many personal revelations since he was last updated in 2011. The remaining spotlights were to be spread out over the rest of the year, with one release each month. The next article was on a character many of you hadn't heard of before she had surfaced in the recent Hunt for Wolverine mini-series. Sapphire Styx had a history that went back years, but her latest story would see her monumentally transform Psylocke and earn the psychic's wrath. Lastly, we released a summary of the recent Captain Marvel event in case any of you missed it the first time around.
The Upstarts had recently appeared in the pages of Uncanny X-Men again after two decades of absence. To mark this occasion we dedicated an entire event month to the team and the confusing competition they all participated in. First up was an update to Shinobi Shaw, who had only made a scattering of appearances since his profile was originally written. The first major spotlight of the event was on Fabian Cortez, a character so ingrained in the 90's he had barely appeared outside of it. The Child's Play crossover had been written years ago, but the images were refreshed so that you could all enjoy the storyline that spelled the end to the Upstarts and their antics.
Next was a spotlight on Graydon Creed, the only human member of the team, a status that often put him at odds with the rest of his team and his own twisted beliefs. Our next update was on a spotlight we had only just released earlier in the year, Siena Blaze. Despite that, we siezed the opportunity to keep it up to date whlst we could. Trevor Fitzroy was next, another character who enjoyed a high profile in the 90's but didn't make it to the end of the decade. As we neared the end of the event we updated the main Upstarts team entry adding in numerous images to break up the text, a format we would start to do on all our team entries going forward. The final release of the event was on the mysterious man who orchestrated the whole competition, The Gamesmaster.
As we still had a few days of September left, we squeezed in an update to one of the original X-Men, this time it was Archangel.
Our first release in October was a spotlight on one of the X-Men's newer human allies, Dr. Kavita Rao. When she first crossed the X-Men's paths it was exactly under the best of circumstances, but since then she did her best to help the mutants, even going on to join the team as their doctor. Next up was another scientist and our third installne tin the original five updates, Beast. His spotlight had only recently been updated, but with the addition of all is time-travellign counterpart's adventures there was more than enough content to keep us busy. Halloween was nearly upon us and we couldn't decide if we should give you an X-Men release or an Avengers one. In the end we decided on both, and gave you the Alpha Flight villain Dreamqueen for our UncannyXMen.net release and a team entry on the supernatural Night Shift for MightyAvengers.net.
November started off with a bang as we released a spotlight on one of the newer X-students, Kid Omega. His profile had skyrocketed in recent years, so much so he was one of the few students to branch out from the X-Men and join the West Coast Avengers. Cyclops was the next update on our list, having died and been reborn in the brief period since his spotlight was last updated. The next character article was on someone not many of you might know about, the Latin American superhero La Bandera. Teaming up briefly with Wolverine many years ago, she was unceremoniously killed off-panel by a serial killer of superheroes. The last entry for the month was on the Schism crossover, the event that saw Wolverine and Cyclops walk their separate ways a few years ago.
The first release of the month was on one of the few mutant characters not associated with the X-Men. Nekra had done the rounds in Marvel, fighting the West Coast Avengers, Daredevil and Spider-Man, however she never really faced off against the X-Men despite her X-gene. Next up was a villain who was definitely an x-villain, although she wasn't opposed to helping the team out now and again. Unuscione, a long-time member of the Acolytes, has been around a fiarly long time but there are still so many questions about her, most notably how she is releated to Unus the Untouchable. The last release of the year was our final update to the original five X-Men, Jean Grey. Having recently come back to life, she finally shunned the Phoenix Force and set out forging a new path for herself.
2017 in numbers
26 new character articles
16 character article updates
11 new articles
6 article updates
Jan - 20
Feb - 19
Mar - 18
Apr - 22
May - 16
Jun - 12
Jul - 10
Aug - 12
Sep - 10
Oct - 14
Nov - 14
Dec - 4
Total for 2019 - 171 - That's an average of 0.47 per day
In March we kicked off out Captain Marvel event month to tie-in to the newly released film, and so we altered the logos on both sites.
For September we changed the logo once again to reflect our Upstarts event month that we had going on at UXN.
2019 ended up being a bigger year than we thought as we successfully managed to juggle content for both sites as well as do an event month for each one. Plus, we also ticked off updates on the original five X-Men, a subject that had been giving a number of us behinds the scenes a headache over the last few years.
Looking ahead to 2020, we have already hit the ground running, and with our 20th anniversary this year we are sure to pull out all the stops.
From all of us here at UXN and MAN we hope you had a great 2019 and enjoyed all the content we put out.