Earth X: X

Background

Iron Man, with his giant suit of armor and his dozens of robots fought against the Celestials only to buy time for whatever Richards was planning to do. Black Bolt's cry had in fact worked and the cry went out to either Galactus or the Silver Surfers or both, because that is who showed up to fight the Celestials. Loki also went to his father and told him the truth that they are not gods but they are what they are because that is what humanity believes them to be, and if all of the world is destroyed then they too will cease to exist. Being Loki, of course, no one believes him, so he takes his knife and plunges it into his stomach, hoping with his death they will know he finally spoke the truth.

Story 'Issue X'

  Earth X: X
Summary: War Against Celestials, Peter Parker Cameo
Editor: Polly Watson
Co-Plot/Art: Alex Ross
Writer: Jim Krueger
Pencils: John Paul Leon
Inker: Bill Reinhold

X-51's monologue starts up but it is only a recording inside of X-51. It appears he recorded a final message should they all fail and the planet be destroyed. Galactus has made it to Earth but they mention the fact that Reed Richards turned Galactus into a star years ago, so the big question is, who is this being? And why is he helping Earth?

Back on the moon, with the Celestials now on Earth, John Jameson has transformed into the Man-Wolf leaving X-51, Reed Richards and John's wife to deal with him as Uatu listens in, calling them all nothing but beasts. Man-Wolf attacks Reed, but X-51 gets his attention away from Reed and focused on him. As Man-Wolf jumps, X-51 creates one of Uatu's portals between them sending Jameson back to Earth on the sunlit side of the planet so that he'll revert back to human. John's wife believes that they just sent Jameson to his death on a planet destined to be destroyed and says they are just like the Celestials they are fighting.

Meanwhile on Earth, X-51 explains that this is the first time that Galactus has ever gone up against the Celestials face to face. He has been traveling throughout the world in search of planets with a Celestial growing inside so that he can destroy the planet and kill it. X-51 believes that because Reed Richards saved Galactus' life years ago, this is why he has come when Black Bolt called.

As Galactus busies himself setting up his equipment to draw the energies from the Celestial inside the planet, Namor has shown up and he is pissed. It seems that some of his people remember when the Celestials came to Earth thousands of years ago and destroyed their cities and killed many people. Namor starts battling them motivated by what he knows best, vengence.

Uatu still makes X-51 and Reed question their decision to bring Galactus into this. What will happen if Galactus should fall? Then the planet will surely be destroyed during the birthing process. But if Galactus should prevail then the Earth is still in peril. Would Galactus just up and leave, or will he need to drain the Earth's energies because he needs to replenish the power he has exhausted during the fight?

While Galactus is getting ready, the Silver Surfers are trying to defend him from the Celestials. One blast finds it's mark and kills Shalla-Bal, the Silver Surfer's love. The blast knocks the Surfer from his board and he plumets into the sea.

As the battle is taking place, Reed Richards and X-51 are questioning what is really going on. How they developed their powers, what are the next steps of their mutation, who and what controls them and makes them believe in themselves? It is all a little too much to follow, but Reed mentions that the Asgardians are a race that are what they are because of what they are believed to be. It also appears that the being that looks like Galactus is who he is as long as no one tells him he isn't, putting him into the same position as the Asgardians.

It appears that Loki was right and on his recommendation the Asgardians come to Earth to fight the Celestials, but is of little consequence because the Celestials quickly take out all of them except for Loki by making them believe that they are nothing, that they are already dead. As their bodies fall to the sea, we witness Namor pulling the Silver Surfer from the waters, saying that he knows the Surfer's pain for he once lost the one he loved.

Reed travels back to Earth to Latveria where the Inhumans are staying. With Black Bolt gone Medusa feels there is no reason for them to stay, but Reed tells her he knows where her son is and he takes her to King Britain's court. There we learn that the Brian's Black Knight is actually the son of Medusa and Black Bolt and that Black Bolt took him to Brian to raise.

Galactus finally defeats the Celestials and they fly off, but there still raises the issue of the Celestial still inside the planet. With Galactus' equipment destroyed he cannot remove it and when it is born, the planet will be destroyed in the process. But then a voice comes from the top of the Statue of Liberty calling out to Galactus.

Reed asks Galactus to remove his helmet so that they can communicate easier. As the helmet is lifted Galactus is revealed to be Franklin Richards, Reed Richards and Susan Storm's son. Apparently Franklin believes he is Galactus like the Asgardians believe they were gods. Because of this Reed must address his son as Galactus and not give anything away or Franklin will know that he is not really Galactus and all will be lost. Richards pleads with him to remove the Celestial without destroying the Earth.

Reed manages to make Galactus believe that he is a compassionate being and gets him to destroy the Celestial without consuming the energies of the planet. He flies off into space saying that Richards will never see him again. X-51 and Uatu watch this and of course Uatu says that the people of Earth will just end up destroying themselves anyway without the Skull to control them, but X-51 reveals that Reed Richards knows of a way to remove the Terrigan Mists from the atmosphere, causing everyone's mutants gene to become dorminant again.

X-51 breaks through and confronts, face to face, Uatu. X-51 reveals that the reason why the Watchers are forced to watch over the planets containing the Celestials was because they watched over the birth of Galactus and did nothing. Because of this they are imprisoned on each planet's moon to look after the host planets. As punishment for all that Uatu has done to the Earth, X-51 pulls out his cables that connect him to his instruments, which allow him tohear what is going on on Earth, cutting him off completely.

X-51 and Reed Richards look on the construction of a giant torches made from the radio-dishes Reed used in his failed energy experiments that caused the trouble in the first place. Torches are being constructed throughout the world and once they are lit they will burn away the Terrigan Mists in the air. There are some countries that have choosen not to participate like Wakandan feeling that they cannot turn their backs on the powers they've been given.

Venom and Spider-Man have a touching moment where Peter says that May needs to give him some pointers before he can get back into the super hero action. And at the same time Peter manages to blow May's secret identity to Luke Cage, who is still trying to get Peter to join the N.Y.P.D.

As Reed Richard is getting a thank you from a donkey-headed Jonah Jameson for creating a solar suit that hinders John Jameson from transforming into the Man-Wolf, it appear that Reed kind of falls asleep to be met with Captain Marvel. It appears that Marvel was the one that knew Loki was the only one who could realize the truth about the Asgardians, but what Marvel really wanted to tell Reed is that he must get ready for his return (a seqway to the next mini-series).

Now that everything is over and the Watcher is cut off, X-51 has decided to go back to the moon so that he can look out for the planet. He will take up the role of Uatu once more, but he won't act like the Watcher when he is needed.

Luna's transformation has finally finished and she enmerges from her cocoon as a cross between a butterfly. The Black Knight looks on her and turns away. Nothing else is said about this except that Luna is confused and Medusa comforts her by telling her she understands.

The series closes with Captain America lighting the first torch and giving a speech about the qualities of being human that has been forgotten. To be human everyone needs to see the need they have for others and see the need in everyone else. Everyone must learn to become dependent on each other and in their dependence, they'll find what it means to be human again.

General Comments

It appears that Black Bolt's cry for help out to the cosmos worked and Galactus returns to Earth to confront the Celestials. After the fight the Celestials fly off knowing they are no match for him. This is when we learn that Galactus is really Franklin Richards, Reed's son. Getting Franklin to believe he is a compassionate being, Reed talks this new Galactus into destroying the young Celestial without damaging the planet. With the Earth safe, Galactus flies off, vowing to never to return to Earth again.

With the world safe from both Galactus and the Celestials, the threat of the Celestial growing inside the world taken away, and the Skull vanquished, the only thing left to do is to pick up the pieces. Reed comes up with a way to destroy all of the Terrigan Mist in the atmosphere that gave everyone their powers by lighting these giant torches made from the remains of the radiodishes Reed used in his failed experiment. Once all of the Terrigan Mist has been burned away, everyone should go back to normal again.

Close to the end Reed as a vision of Captain Marvel who reveals to him to he will return to the dead soon and that Reed must be ready when that day comes. This leads us after this series to the next, Universe X.

Overall Rating

With the end of the series I was more happy with the fact that the series has ended then anything else. In this issue, what bothered me the most is that Galactus is now Franklin Richards. Where did that come from and how did it happen? Why does he believe himself to be the world devourer? I just didn't buy this at all. The last we saw of Franklin was in a flashback telling of how Namor killed Johnny Storm and as a punishment for this, Franklin cursed him to burn whenever he leaves the oceans. In the Flashback Franklin was still pretty young. Nothing is said how the son of Reed Richards came to think of himself as Galactus and why Reed would allow this in the first place.

I also didn't like how Galactus (err, Franklin) could remove the Celestial without destroying the planet. If this could be done why then didn't Galactus just do this in the first place and why doesn't he do that with all the other planets he has destroyed with a Celestial growing inside? Uatu goes on and on about how it doesn't matter if Galactus wins or loses, the end result is the destruction of the world. But Galactus just removed the Celestial without explaining how. It seemed like a big build up with an unexplained conclusion.

I also didn't like what happened between the Black Knight, Black Bolt's son, and Luna, the daughter of Quicksilver and the Inhuman, Crystal. They were supposed to be married and bring about a new generation for the Inhumans. But in the story, Black Knight looks at Luna with her new powers and turns his back on her without any explaination. What is going on here and why doens't Medusa, Black Knight's mother, step in and do something, do anything? It felt like they were running out of pages and needed to wrap everything up quickly and instead of using an extra page or two to work out this story line, the very reason why the Inhumans came back to Earth in the first place, they just said close the door on this.

All in all with the exception of an odd issue here and there, I was incredibly disappointed with this series. Usually whatever Alex Ross touches is gold (Marvels, Kingdom Come) but I found this series very convoluted and confusing; telling us one thing one issue and something entirely different in another. I really do not recommend this series to anyone looking for a good story because it really just wasn't.