Mutant X Annual 2001

Issue Date: 
May 2014
Story Title: 
The Key

Howard Mackie (writer), James Fry (pencils), Tom Raney (cover), Andrew Pepoy (inks), Sandy Florea (additional inks), Gina Going (colors), Chris Eliopoulos (letters), Lysa Hawkins (editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief)

Brief Description: 

The Beyonder drains the life force out of the deceased Captain America, learning his memories and finding out about Havok. The Beyonder believes Alex to be the key that holds the information he has been seeking all those thousand of lifetimes. The Beyonder returns to Earth, causing mass destructions in the hope that Alex shows himself. His plan doesn’t work out as hoped, so the Beyonder stops the distructions and goes to search for Alex himself. Meanwhile, Havok struggles with life and death after being bitten by Dracula. Dracula disappears after he and the Six become aware of the Beyonder’s prescence. The Six bring Alex to the medi-lab and receive a good-bye from Wolverine, who feels sorry for not helping out, as he has to bring his family into safety. The X-Men have also survived the attack and make it back to Earth, traveling to the Six to help them. They get the help from Dr. Strange, who spreads the word to every super-powered being to help them fight the Beyonder. Gambit leaves unnoticed, stealing a plane and wanting to bring his daughter into safety. While almost every hero gets killed, Scotty reaches into his dad’s mind and brings Alex back. Havok blasts Dracula down, but he survives. Dracula informs the mutants that this is only the beginning, as the Beyonder walks among them and plans to destroy the entire multiverse!

Full Summary: 

The Beyonder has returned to the Earth’s core and lifts the body of the deceased Captain America high up. He then drains the life energy from Cap and wants to know everything Cap knows about Alex Summers.

The Beyonder witnesses how Havok came into this universe after the battle with the Sentinels. The Beyonder is surprised to learn that Havok is a dimensional walker, coming from a core reality. The Beyonder can’t understand how Havok could destroy the Goblin Queen, a force of universal nature. But the Beyonder soon learns how things happened, thanks to Captain America’s memories. The Beyonder sees how Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, the Avengers, challenged Cap and his enhanced super-powers, and how it became their ultimate death. And how Captain America eventually died at the hands of Havok.

The Beyonder is certain that it is Havok he wants. Havok is the key. A nagging, distant memory that needs to be explored. But now, the word must go forth. The Beyonder reaches to the Earth and lets every hero and villain who ever fought him remember him, and let them know that he has returned!

The X-Men have survived the combined blast from Havok and Captain America, which destroyed the moon and their entire base. Magneto surrounds his friends and teammates with a magnetic force-field and plans to transport them back to Earth. As Magneto sees the Beyonder in his mind, he believes that they are doomed. The Beyonder makes it to Earth, showing the heroes that they have failed to imprison him. The Beyonder remembers how the heroes barely survived during the most secret of wars, and now all of their vaunted strengths won’t be enough to stop him. The Beyonder disrupts the course of nature, causing disaster and destructions all over the entire world! The Beyonder soon gets enough of it, stopping the damages, and wants to find Alex Summers, his key to his victory.

As the Beyonder walks, a shiny bright light comes out of the sky and the frightened people of New York believe him to be their saviour. The Beyonder walks above the humans and knows that Alex Summers holds what he has surched for all those thousands of lifetimes. The Beyonder has to find him. But the Beyonder also knows that there is something he can’t remember about Havok and tries to figure out what that is.

At that moment, Havok is bitten in his neck by the Vampire Lord Dracula. Havok begs for help, as the world around him vades away into darkness. Havok remembers his teammates and apologizes to them for failing. All Alex wants to do now is sleep. Suddenly, both the Six and Dracula feel a horrible pain run through their bodies and minds and wonder what’s going on. Dracula realizes that the Beyonder has returned! Scared, he teleports away and takes good-bye from his… friends.

Meanwhile, the Beyonder still walks above New York City and the astonished people all believe him to be their savior. An old priest, holding a cross, believes the Beyonder to be a false god, a devil - like so many before him. The priest says he knows, because he too was tempted once. He believed himself to be Thor, the Norse God of Thunder. But that believe made him loose his medical practice, the love of his life and even cost him his soul!

The Beyonder becomes angry, wondering what he ever saw in this world. He makes the humans attack Father Blake, but the priest is rescued just in time by Spider-Man. The Beyonder is glad to see the first of the super-heroes and realizes that it begins again. Spider-Man gets Blake to safety and jumps on a rooftop. Suddenly, the Beyonder gets a billy club smashed to his head and looks up to find out who threw it. It has been thrown by Daredevil! Daredevil had hoped to poke an eye out or something, but that obviously didn’t work.

Daredevil tells the Beyonder that he wasn’t around the last time the heroes fought him, due to the financial problems he had, he even had to kill an old enemy, but now he has been sent to distract the Beyonder from the Lethal Legion! The Legion attacks, but so does the Beyonder. The Beyonder had hoped that the heroes had learned that he cannot be stopped by any force. Spider-Man tells Blake he’ll come back for him after the Beyonder has been defeated, but now he wants to go help his friends.

The fight bores the Beyonder, so he powers up and unleahes a huge explosion. Spider-Man and Blake can jump into safety but that unfortuatly doesn’t count for the Lethal Legion and half of the people of New York City. At that moment, Havok remembers dying. Happens a lot to him. But this time, Alex doesn’t want to fight back and he just wants to sleep. Havok hears voices calling for him, but he ignores them.

Bloodstorm panics, noticing how much blood Havok is loosing. Wolverine asks what they plan to do about Dracula. Ice-Man says he saw Dracula disappearing into mist, but he knows that Dracula must be around here somewhere. Wolverine says that he wants to help out, but he’s got his family to worry about. Bloodstorm says that she understand and tells Logan to do whatever it takes to bring them into safety.

The Six want to bring Alex to the medi-lab, but the lights aren’t working. Bloodstorm says that they’ll have to go find it themselves, but warns that Dracula is still present and will probably plan to take them out one at the time. As the heroes go, they don’t notice that they are being watched by Dracula, who sits up against the ceiling. Dracula quietly tells his Blood Child that she can’t hide from him forever. Dracula says that he has now tasted the powerful blood of Havok, something he never tasted before. Dracula wants him. And he shall be his. Bloodstorm hurries, while Alex mumbles, “go away. I just want to sleep.”

At that moment, the Beyonder sits in the sky, wondering how Havok can evade his probe. The Beyonder lifts up every human and vehicle of New York up in the sky, thinking he needs to go everyone of them to find Alex’ hidden location. The Beyonder shouts “Where are you Alex Summers!” He drops all the humans, killing them all, leaving a huge explosion behind. The Beyonder relaxes, promising that he shall find Alex.

Meanwhile, Havok, still dying, hears in his mind millions of voices calling for him, but he wants to ignore them all and just have some sleep. The Six have made it to the medi-lab and have put Alex on a surgery table, establishing him on a healing machine. Ice-Man finds it ridiculous that they all have to wait and wants to find Dracula and kill him. Suddenly, there’s a loud scream and the team looks surprised up to see… the X-Men!

Raven runs to her dad, Gambit, and Scotty runs to Alex. Magneto informs Bloodstorm about the Beyonder and that he is searching for Havok. They can’t allow that to happen. Doctor Strange shows up, telling Magneto that truer words have never been spoken. Strange explains that he has informed every super-powered human the message, and they will come. Strange knows that many of them shall die, but they have to try it. The fate of this dimension and countless of others are at stake. Scotty hangs over his dad, begging him to wake up.

At that moment, the Beyonder looks at all the different kinds of heroes that have gathered and are running towards him. Mutants, irradiated freaks, genetic mishaps, scientifically altered beings… not even the Gods of this dimension can impress him. The Beyonder powers up and kills them all!

Meanwhile, Scotty has reached into Alex’ mind, giving Alex a bright light to turn to, so that he can come back. Alex recognizes Scotty’s voice and almost wakes up. Ice-Man, Brute, Jean and Quicksilver have started the search for Dracula. Ice-Man, holding an ice-made stake, jokingly says that all they need now is the return of the Goblin Queen. Jean tells Bob not to make jokes now.

Jean asks Quicksilver if he can scout ahead, so he goes. But he’s so fast that Jean warns him not to move too far away. But she’s too late with her warning and Quicksilver gets killed by Dracula. Dracula slashes Jean through her sheek and jumps at her! Scotty tries to get Alex awake, but he says he’s sorry; he just wants to sleep. Scotty shows Alex images of their fallen teammates, they need his help!

Bloodstorm tells Elektra to get Scotty away, they have to leave now. As Elektra wants to do that, Brute and Ice-Man come, dropping in through the wall, holding Dracula in their arms. Ice-Man makes pins on his icebody and is determined to kill Dracula with at least one of them. Elektra pushes Scotty behind her, protecting him, and tells Bloodstorm to do something, she’s the only one who’s powerful enough. Bloodstorm hesitates, and Dracula mocks at her, telling his love to help her master.

Outside the castle, Gambit has stolen a plane and leaves the Six. Crying, he apologizes for deserting, but he has to get his daughter into safety. Scotty again tries to get his dad to wake up, showing him the battle of the combined forces of Rogue, Magneto and the Defenders fighting the Beyonder. Dracula slashes the Brute, wounding him badly.

Bloodstorm gets angry at Dracula for hurting her family and slashes Dracula with her sharpened claws. Elektra tries to throw her sai to Dracula, but he turns into mist, avoiding the sai and grabs Elektra by the throat, wanting to kill her. As a last resort, Elektra tells Scotty to run. Elektra takes out a bomb, takes the pinn off of it and it explodes! Elektra is dead, but Dracula survives! Dracula points his attention towards Bloodstorm and Scotty, but gets blasted away by a plasma-blast from… Havok! He orders Dracula to stay away from his son. Scotty hugs Alex, saying that Elektra is gone. Alex promises that it will be allright, it’s over now.

Dracula laughs, correcting that this is only the beginning. For the Beyonder walks among them! The Beyonder powers up and has killed Rogue and the Defenders. Dracula explains to the heroes that, while he would be content into feeding off humanity, the Beyonder shall destroy the entire multiverse!

Characters Involved: 

Bloodstorm, Brute, Gambit, Havok, Ice-Man (all the Six)

Jean Grey

Scotty Summers

Raven LeBeau


Magneto, Nightcrawler, Polaris, Quicksilver, Rogue (the X-Men)

Dr. Leonard Samson, Dr. Strange, Stingray, Yellowjacket (the Defenders)


Mariko Yashida (Wolverine’s wife)

Marie and Brian (Wolverine’s daughter and son)


The Beyonder



Brother Voodoo, Devil Dinosaur, Fing Fang Foom, Gargoyle, Moon Knight, Slapstick (the Lethal Legion)

Abomination, Beta Ray Bill, Black Knight, Black Panther, Dr. Doom, Drax, Iron Fist, Living Comet, Namorita, Nova, Odin, Photon, Power Man, Strong Guy, Sub-Mariner, Thor, Thunderbird, Valkyrie (heroes attacking the Beyonder)

Father Donald Blake

May Parker

Foggy Nelson

unnamed people living in New York

deceased body of Captain America

(in the Beyonder’s word-spreading)

Absorbo, Dr. Doom, Dr. Octopus, Dr. Strange, the Lizard, Loki, Nick Fury, Reed Richards, Spider-Man, Sub-Mariner, Titania

(in Captain America’s memories)

Bloodstorm, Brute, Captain America, Gambit, Havok, Ice-Man (the Six)

Black Widow, Deathlok, Hawkeye, Iron Giant Man, Typhoid Mary (the Avengers)

The Fallen

Marvel Woman/the Goblin Queen


Story Notes: 

This story has continued from Mutant X #31 and concludes, alongside with the series, in Mutant X #32.

There are a lot of characters first seen in this issue, with most liking the Norse Gods. The Gods have always been fandom’s most disire to see in this title, and now the fans finally briefly had the chance to see them.

It is unclear if the seen Thunderbird is John or James Proudstar.

Issue Information: 
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