Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Anthems to lost icons

This gem made it's debut in 1994. Dark Horse decided they needed a superhero universe, and came up with, among other things, this:

Infected with alien blood, he had enhanced physical abilities, fast healing, as well as a degree of invulnerablility (he could take several rounds to the chest, and still keep on fighting, but they would penetrate him, no Superman stuff here). X roamed a city similar in makeup to Gotham, in terms of corruption and criminal elements, the city itself was more modern (though it had huge sewers). X's goal in life was to clean things up, appointing himself the one-man police force. He had one simple rule:

Break the law, you get marked once. Get marked twice, and you're dead. Much time was spent in the comic coming up with creative ways for the bad guys to get marked. They might recieve a photo of themselves with a slash across it, or look in to a mirror to see a red line on it. Others were less fortunate, and would be physically scarred, usually across the face in a fight with X. He took this rule seriously:

Three panels after saving the above guy from being murdered, he kills him himself because he was marked twice. Daaaaamn.

The message for bad guys was simple:

I think a large part of why I loved this character so much, was his combination of various elements. There's the Judge Dredd kind of mentality, "obey the law or you're screwed". Also a bit of DC's Vigilante, with his interest in cleaning up corruption and flat out killing the bad guys. Probably some parts of Batman too. I was a fan of those 3 characters growing up during the 80's, so it was almost a given that I'd like X.

The title ran for 25 issues, until the entire Dark Horse line imploded, never to be heard of again. I mourn his loss.

One other reason X was so cool. The last 12 or so issues were drawn by







The above sequence is from a single page. I love that man.

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