Review of Uncanny X-Men Issue #39

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Uncanny X-Men Issue #39 (December 10, 1967)

Story By: Roy Thomas

Art By: Werner Roth and George Tuska

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

Brief Description: The Factor Three Saga ends in this issue! How will the X-Men defeat this mysterious organization?

Characters Introduced in This Issue: None

Recurring Characters in This Issue: Mutant Master, Changeling, Blob, Unus, Vanisher, Mastermind, Banshee, Fred Duncan, Professor X, Angel, Iceman, Cyclops, Beast, Jean Grey

Synopsis:

This issue begins with Cyclops and Iceman finishing up their mission at the American missile base. They are able to disable all of the missiles so that Factor Three cannot use them and then they flee the base to find Factor Three’s new headquarters.

Meanwhile Jean, Angel, and Beast are trying desperately to stop a bomb from blowing up Soviet leaders, but the Blob stands in their way. After battling the X-Men, Blob leaves in fear of the explosion and Angel is able to get the bomb high enough in the air that it does not harm anyone.

Both factions of the X-Men then meet up at Factor Three’s new headquarters and they brace themselves for a final battle against Mutant Master and his evil mutants.

However before the fight begins, Professor X intervenes and reveals that Mutant Master was planning on turning on his evil mutant servants after World War III. Angrily, the four evil mutants team up with the X-Men.

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With the help of Banshee, they are able to destroy all of Mutant Master’s equipment. It is then revealed that Mutant Master is actually an alien and not a mutant. In defeat, Mutant Master kills himself.

Screen shot 2014-06-25 at 2.00.55 PMphoto 3The issue then switches gears and goes back to the origin story of Cyclops. After causing a scene in New York with his powers, Cyclops runs away from the orphanage he lives in. Professor X is seeking out Cyclops, but cannot reach him mentally for some reason.

The issue ends with Cyclops encountering a man who claims that he can help Cyclops, but the caption states that this man is the first ever evil mutant.

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Review:

This issue is definitely much better than the last issue, but it still has some flaws. My biggest problem with this issue is Mutant Master’s suicide. Even though he was thoroughly defeated, it seems silly that he kills himself in despair. At least this hopefully means that Mutant Master won’t be returning any time soon.

My other main problem with this issue is that the Cyclops origin story continues to bore me. Nothing interesting has happened in this origin story yet. Hopefully this first evil mutant ever will make things more interesting.

Thankfully, there were some things I did like about this issue. I really liked the end battle scene where all the mutants banded together to defeat Mutant Master. With all of their combined power, it was extremely easy to defeat the evildoer.

With the exception of Angel’s costume, I really like the new costumes (shown on the cover above). I’m happy that Cyclops is finally in his signature blue outfit. These costumes are a lot sleeker and cooler than their last costumes and I like that their costumes are all different than each other’s costume for once.

Overall, this issue would have been rated a bit higher if it did not include Cyclops’ origin story. Thank God the Factor Three saga is now over. I can’t wait for the story to move on.

A few final notes:

1. Why is Factor Three called Factor Three? Is it solely because they are trying to cause World War III?

2. X-Men uses the word “uncanny” way too often.

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3. Mastermind isn’t very smart.

photo 54. The issue hints about Beast’s future transformation!

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5. I really enjoyed this Blob action panel.

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4 thoughts on “Review of Uncanny X-Men Issue #39

  1. Alex Wei says:

    The suicide of Mutant Master might make sense if he was afraid of being interrogated about his home planet and their plans. Our own servicemen are sometimes given suicide kits for the same reason; for almost no one can indefinitely resist torture. It seems to have worked, since I don’t think anyone ever figured out what planet he was from. On the other hand, I don’t think they ever continued their plans, as far as we know.

    On the other hand, he’s an alien. Maybe he can naturally recover from suicide!

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