Long-time enemy of the X-Men Selene once again plans to ascend to godhood. Recruiting several deadly mutants as her Inner Circle, Selene possesses a mystically-enhanced version of the Techno-Organic Virus which she uses to resurrect many former allies and enemies of the X-Men, as well as the millions of mutants slaughtered during the Sentinel attack on Genosha and Thunderbird’s Apache tribe. The X-Men not only have to protect Utopia from the invading dead mutants, but also deal with fighting some of the dearest friends. Adding to the troubles is the return of Proteus on Muir Island. Can the dwindling mutant population fight their deceased loved ones and stop Selene’s diabolical plan…?
- Colossus, Cyclops, Dazzler, Iceman, Nightcrawler, Psylocke, Rogue, Sub-Mariner, White Queen (all X-Men)
- Cannonball, Karma, Magik, Magma, Mirage II, Sunspot (all New Mutants)
- Archangel, Domino, Elixir, Vanisher, Warpath, Wolfsbane, Wolverine, X-23 (all X-Force)
- Blindfold, Dust, Hellion, Onyxx, Prodigy IV, Rockslide, Stepford Cuckoos, Surge IV, Trance (all X-Men Students)
- Danger, Diamond Lil, Husk, Magneto, Meld, Professor X (all residents of Utopia)
- Doctor Nemesis, Madison Jeffries (both X-Club)
- Empath, Donald Pierce, Sebastian Shaw (all imprisoned in the X-Brig on Utopia)
- Blink, Eli Bard, Mortis, Senyaka, Wither (all Selene’s Inner Circle)
- Banshee, Barnacle, Beef, Berserker II, Bevatron, Siena Blaze, Bolt II, Caliban, Catseye, Rusty Collins, Cypher, Darkstar, Deadbolt, Destiny, Feral, Hurricane, Jetstream, Katu, Harry Leland, Maggott, Leon Matheson, Mellancamp, Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Pyro, Rem Ram, Risque, Roulette, Scaleface, Shinobi Shaw, Skin, Spoor, Spyne, Static II, Stonewall, Super Sabre, Synch, Tarot, Thunderbird, Tower, Unus (all Selene’s Army of the Dead)
- Resurrected Apache Tribe
- Resurrected Mutants killed on Genosha
- Bastion, Graydon Creed, Cameron Hodge, Stephen Lang, William Stryker
- Doctor Doom, Doctor Strange, Doctor Voodoo
X-Force (3rd series) #21-25, X-Men Legacy #231-233, New Mutants (3rd series) #6-8, X-Necrosha one-shot, Necrosha: The Gathering one-shot.
Aside from the prequel & one-shot being first, each series involved in Necrosha can be read on its own. The below read order is simply suggested.
Selene & her Inner Circle:
- As a long-time member of the Hellfire Club’s Inner Circle and its Black Queen, Selene proved a constant enemy to the X-Men and New Mutants.
- Some thousands of years ago, Eli Bard failed to complete a ritual assigned to him by Selene that would have then ascended her to godhood. He was captured and burned at the stake and awoke 700 years later, with a form of vampirism. [X-Force (3rd series) #11] In an attempt to regain favor with Selene, Bard killed an Apache tribe in the New World, infiltrated the Purifiers and stole the Techno-Organic Virus. [X-Force (3rd series) #1-6] Bard then resurrected the slain Apache tribe and was forced to battle their Spirit Totems. During the battle, he lost the Spirit Blade needed to complete Selene’s ascension. [Necrosha: The Gathering, X-Force (3rd series) #22]
- Wither left the Xavier Institute following Wallflower’s death and, after encountering Selene, began a sexual relationship with her. [New X-Men (2nd series) #22, #32]
- After years of hating her sister, Dazzler, Mortis was approached by Selene, who helped her embrace her death-touch. [Necrosha: The Gathering]
- Blink was a candidate for the Generation X team but sacrificed herself to stop the Phalanx. [“Phalanx Covenant“] Selene plucked Blink back into reality from the interspatial rift where she was trapped and manipulated her by lying to her to gain her loyalty. [Necrosha: The Gathering]
- A long-time Acolyte, Senyaka somehow survived the destruction of Genosha in New X-Men (1st series) #115. He later survived the destruction of Providence Island in Cable & Deadpool #42 and was approached by Selene to join her group in Necrosha: The Gathering.
Selene’s Army of the Dead:
- Banshee was killed in a twin plane collision in X-Men: Deadly Genesis #2.
- Freedom Force members Destiny and Stonewall both died on Muir Island in Uncanny X-Men #255. Destiny was murdered by Legion while Stonewall was killed by Donald Pierce. Their teammate, Super Sabre, was decapitated in New Mutants Annual #7.
- Darkstar was infected by the Weapon X bacteria and subsequently executed by Fantomex in New X-Men (1st series) #130.
- Cypher was slain by the Ani-Mator, sacrificing himself to save Wolfsbane, in New Mutants (1st series) #60.
- Pyro succumbed to the Legacy Virus in Cable (1st series) #87.
- Thunderbird was killed on his second mission with the X-Men, attempting to stop Count Nefaria in X-Men (1st series) #95.
- Rusty Collins was murdered by a newly awakened Holocaust in X-Men (2nd series) #42.
- Beef, Bevatron, Catseye, Jetstream, Roulette and Tarot were murdered by the Sentinels in Uncanny X-Men #281-282. Tarot was later resurrected and appeared with the New Hellions in X-Force (1st series) #87-90. In New Avengers (1st series) #18, she was revealed to have been de-powered following M-Day. Her second death and its cause have not been explained on panel.
- Caliban was killed by a Reaver in New X-Men (2nd series) #45.
- Feral was slaughtered by Sabretooth in Wolverine (3rd series) #54.
- Synch died while attempting to defuse a bomb in Generation X #70, while his fellow Generation X teammate Skin was later captured and crucified by the Church of Humanity in Uncanny X-Men #423.
- Bolt II was killed in an explosion in Weapon X (2nd series) #21.
- Maggott and Siena Blaze were both gassed in Neverland, the mutant concentration camp, in Weapon X (2nd series) #5.
- Tower was assassinated by the X-Cutioner in Uncanny X-Men Annual (1st series) #17.
- Harry Leland had a heart attack while battling Nimrod in Uncanny X-Men #209.
- Risque’s death was not shown on panel, but it was revealed that she was killed in New X-Men Annual 2001 while on a mission for X-Corporation Hong Kong.
- Unus the Untouchable was overwhelmed by his own force field, resulting in his asphyxiation in Son of M #6.
- The Morlocks Berserker II and Scaleface were killed in X-Factor (1st series) #11 - Scaleface was shot by a member of the Crazy Wolf Gang while Berserker was struck by Cyclops’ power and knocked off a dock after he began to overload on power.
- Shinobi Shaw’s death has not been seen on panel. He was confirmed alive and powered following M-Day. His death by his father’s hand was mentioned in the X-Necrosha one-shot.
- Deadbolt, Hurricane and Spyne were all members of the Dark Riders, all of whom died in Wolverine (2nd series) #100. Deadbolt and Spyne were slaughtered by a feral Wolverine, while Hurricane was killed by a shard of flying adamantium.
- Negasonic Teenage Warhead died on Genosha during the mass Sentinel attack in New X-Men (1st series) #115.
- Barnacle, Katu, Mellancamp, Rem Ram, Static II and Spoor were all members of the Acolytes at one point or another. They were all killed on Genosha during the massive Sentinel attack in New X-Men (1st series) #115.
- Leon Matheson had not appeared prior to Necrosha.
- Cassandra Nova orchestrated a mass Sentinel attack on Genosha in New X-Men (1st series) #115, killing millions of mutants.
- The X-Men moved to Utopia following the debacle in San Francisco with the Humanity Now! organization and Norman Osborn and his Dark Avengers. Utopia was opened up to all of mutantkind.
- Diamond Lil arrived on Utopia in Nation-X #3. After a substantial separation, she and Madison Jeffries slept together.
- Proteus died in X-Men (1st series) #128 after a long battle with the X-Men. He was resurrected and died again, during the “Kings of Pain” crossover. He was later resurrected again as during the House of M. He joined up with the Exiles, which caused him to survive the end of the House of M and remain alive. He had not been seen since Exiles (2nd series) began.
- Warlock was believed dead after the “X-Tinction Agenda,” until he was reborn as Douglock and joined Excalibur [Excalibur (1st series) #77-80]. However, no one knew that Douglock and Warlock were one and the same for many years. He was last seen in his own short-lived series.
In the dead of night, Selene’s army of the dead arrive on Utopia and begin to position themselves strategically throughout the island, waiting for the moment that Cypher breaks through the security codes, granting them entry. Once accomplished, Harry Leland and Shinobi Shaw, deceased members of the Hellfire Club, invaded the X-brig, where Sebastian Shaw, Donald Pierce and Empath are all prisoners. Meanwhile, the Hellions attack their former mentor, the White Queen. Oblivious to this, Archangel, Warpath and Hrimhari arrive on Utopia and go to the infirmary to treat the wounded Wolfsbane, only to be attacked by Pyro and Berserker. Meanwhile, the young mutant Blindfold is mysteriously visited by Destiny, the prisoner of Selene, with a cryptic message of another impending danger, as well as potential information about Blindfold‘s mother.
With her Inner Circle at her side, as well as the resurrected Thunderbird and Caliban, Selene arrive at the decimated Hammer Bay, Genosha. There, she proclaims that this is where she will become a god and then welcomes her associates to what she now calls Necrosha.
By now, all-out war is taking place on Utopia, with its residents encountering Selene’s army at every turn. Some of the island’s defenders are not even familiar with the resurrected mutants they are fighting, such as Psylocke and Dazzler, who encounter the Dark Riders, or several of the X-Men students facing off against Rusty Collins. Other battles were more personal, like Iceman encountering his almost-girlfriend, Darkstar, and Cyclops and the White Queen who are confronted by Banshee. Some of Selene’s army, including Banshee, find that they are able to intermittently resist her thrall and apologize to their friends for their uncontrollable actions. Warpath’s former lover, Risque, is among those who are able resist Selene’s control and urges him to run from her. Archangel uses his razor-sharp wings to eviscerate Scaleface and Pyro, but discovers that, thanks to the TO virus, they can re-assemble themselves.
Though the invasion of Utopia’s sections is methodical, it is not simultaneous. Among the last infiltrated is the New Mutants’ quarters, in which the New Mutants are having a brief reunion with Professor Xavier, unaware that their long-time dead teammate, Cypher, is watching them. Cypher attacks Magma first, striking when she is alone. He then attacks the rest of his teammates, using his ability to read their moves before they make them. It is only when Karma possesses all of the New Mutants, preventing Cypher from “reading” them any further, that the team manages to adequately fight back. Cypher is knocked into the sea by Cannonball but is thereafter collected by the alien Warlock, who brings Cypher back to the New Mutants. Warlock attempts to download a copy of Cypher’s personality stored in Warlock’s databanks but Cypher recovers too quickly and decapitates Warlock.
Before the New Mutants have much of a chance to react, Cypher slowly regains his memory and the Hellions, once the constant foes of the New Mutants, arrive in an attempt to recapture Cypher. The New Mutants are forced to split up as Mirage and Sunspot need to get the badly injured Magma to the infirmary, while Cannonball, Magik and Karma go in pursuit of Cypher and the New Mutants. Mirage and Sunspot get Magma to Doctor Nemesis, fighting off their former associate Feral along the way. Nemesis manages to stabilize Magma by jumpstarting her power, as her wounds would not be present in her “Magma”-state. Meanwhile, Cannonball, Magik and Karma are aided by Warlock, who has repaired himself, and uses two missiles to blast the Hellions away. With the help of Magik’s Soulsword, Warlock purges the remnants of the TO Virus from Cypher, who is restored to life without Selene’s influence.
In the midst of battle, Blindfold locates Cypher and reveals to him that Destiny had come to her in a dream and warned of danger on the other island - Muir Island. Despite not wanting to deplete the ranks on Utopia, Cyclops sends a squad of X-Men and associates to Muir Island to investigate. Rogue, Psylocke, Colossus, Magneto, Husk, Trance and Blindfold soon arrive at the former the Genetic Research Center, once operated by the X-Men’s now dead ally, Dr. Moira MacTaggert. During one of the many battles of the X-Men on that location in the past, Destiny plotted her escape from Selene with the help of another once-dead mutant Leon Matheson. Destiny appears before Blindfold and, in doing so, Blindfold is then possessed by the danger Destiny warned her about: Proteus!
Rogue, Nightcrawler and the others are forced to battle the possessed Blindfold and, during the battle, Proteus manages to possess Nightcrawler as well. As the battle progresses, more of the mutants fall to Proteus’s possession until, eventually, Magneto rips up a chunk of Muir Island, taking himself and the possessed Blindfold into space. Trapped in Earth’s orbit, Proteus begins to weaken, enabling Rogue to free Nightcrawler and the other possessed mutants. Magneto brings himself and the possessed Blindfold back to Earth, where he manages to expel Proteus from her and subsequently destroy him.
In the aftermath, Rogue and Destiny have a brief reunion, during which Destiny reveals to Blindfold that, though she is not Blindfold’s mother, she is close-enough on her family tree, a great-grandmother perhaps. Destiny informs Blindfold that her mother is dead but that she has a brother. The X-Men soon return to Utopia, or whatever is left of it.
The plight of Utopia does not go unnoticed by Bastion and his associates, who are planning their own scheme against mutantkind. They are also among the first to learn that Selene has successfully resurrected the deceased mutants of Genosha. On Utopia, the Stepford Cuckoos soon alert Cyclops to this startling development. During the chaos on Utopia, Doctor Nemesis is finally able to examine the injured Wolfsbane and announces to her and her companion, Hrimhari, that she is pregnant. Hrimhari then proceeds to contact Hela, summoning her to Utopia.
Back in Necrosha, Eli Bard reveals in confidence to Blink that he has lost the blade Selene needs for the spell to cast her into godhood. Blink immediately betrays that confidence and tells Selene, who sends her Inner Circle to Utopia. They arrive just as a number of Selene’s undead have cornered several residents of the island’s residents, including Cyclops, Emma, Wolverine and X-Force. Also among them is Dazzler, who is shocked to see her sister, Mortis, who proves she means business when she murders Diamond Lil.
Hrimhari’s purpose for calling upon Hela is soon made clear as Hrimhari requests that Hela save Wolfsbane and his unborn cub. Hela refuses, offering only to save one. Hrimhari cannot cope with that, so offers his own soul in exchange for that of the unconscious Elixir’s. Hela wakes Elixir and teleports away with Hrimhari, leaving Elixir to save Wolfsbane and her unborn child/cub.
The X-Men and their allies continue to battle the Inner Circle. Wither kills Onyxx, while Eli Bard pursues Warpath, who has the blade that Selene desires. Seeing this, Blink teleports the rest of the Inner Circle to Warpath and Bard. After they capture Warpath and the blade, Blink teleport all of Selene’s minions away to Necrosha, leaving the X-Men to lick their wounds and mourn their dead. X-Force, however, has other plans and makes their move to go to Genosha.
Selene is pleased to have the blade back in her possession but executes Eli Bard for the way he disappointed her. Still captive of the Inner Circle, Warpath is shocked to see his long-dead brother, Thunderbird, and tries to communicate with him. Wolverine, Archangel, Domino, Wolfsbane, Elixir, X-23 and the Vanisher arrive on Genosha / Necrosha and are forced to massacre their way through the undead forces that stand between them and Selene. Meanwhile, Thunderbird manages to reveal to Warpath what will happen once Selene ascends to power and urges him to find a way to stop her, while giving his brother a clue on how to do so. Despite impending doom, the Vanisher teleports to Warpath’s location and rescues him, just as Selene begins her ascent to godhood, annihilating all of her army as she uses their power as part of her plan.
Warpath and the rest of X-Force launch their attack against Selene’s Inner Circle, quickly taking out Senyaka, Wither and Thunderbird. Seeing no way to win, Blink teleports herself and the wounded Mortis to safety, leaving Selene to battle X-Force alone. As X-Force then keeps Selene distracted, Warpath uses the blade he recovered from his brother to stab her with it. Her apotheosis spell disrupted, Selene discorporates, her reign of terror ending before it could become any worse.
- Cypher and Warlock soon rejoin their New Mutants teammates and actively join them on missions. [New Mutants (3rd series) #9-10]
- Following the dangerous missions X-Force had been undertaking, the roster is cut-down to consist of just Wolverine, Archangel, Domino and Vanisher.
- Wolfsbane returns to New York and links up with X-Factor. Months later, under mystically and deadly circumstances, she would give birth to a wolf-cub. [X-Factor (1st series) #207, #224]
- Diamond Lil’s body was placed in a glass coffin and dropped into the ocean beneath Utopia. [Nation-X #3]
- Meld died of his injuries. [X-Men: Second Coming one-shot]
Selene’s Army of the Dead:
- Banshee, Thunderbird and Destiny all find themselves temporarily alive once more during the “Chaos War.” [Chaos War: X-Men #1-2]
- Darkstar returns to life after her replacement is killed in combat with a Dire Wraith. The Darkforce energy, combined with Darkstar’ genetic material, are enough to restore Laynia to life after reconfiguring a Dire Wraith body. [Darkstar & the Winter Guard #3]
- Feral’s ghost would return to plague Wolfsbane in events leading up to the birth of her wolf-cub. [X-Factor (1st series) #220-224]
Selene’s Inner Circle:
- Mortis continues her hatred for Dazzler and enlists the help of Arcade to kill her. This attempt fails and Dazzler defeats Lois and brings her to Utopia, which does not go down well with some people. Eventually, Mortis is put into a telepathically-induced coma. [Necrosha X - The Aftermath: Dazzler one-shot]
- Emma Frost enlisted the aid of Dr. Strange to help locate Blink and liberate her from Selene's influence. Though she resisted these efforts, Frost was successful in freeing Clarice's mind. After some time on her own, Blink was located by the X-Men squad led by Dani Moonstar. She opted to join the newly-formed Jean Grey School in Westchester but also hangs out occasionally with the "New Mutants" team in San Francisco. [X-Men: To Serve & Protect #1]