Comic Books You Should Collect: Giant-Size X-Men #1
This February, Dibbs, the real-time fractional marketplace for collectibles and NFT sports cards, is showcasing iconic comic book issues that you should be collecting, all in part to celebrate comic books making their way onto the platform! While not every book we feature will end up on the Dibbs app, our list is jam-packed with the greatest stories from old and new!
Be sure to join us, February 8th @ 10am PST / 1pm EST, when we drop our first graded comic book, The Incredible Hulk #181 (The first appearance of Wolverine)!
Reviving The X-Men
The X-Men have always struggled to win the hearts and minds of the public. In the comics, they were persecuted and villainized for being different; outside they were treated to sub-par sales. Being one of Marvel's worst selling series in the 60s, the company finally chose to cancel the book in 1970. The series would continue to see publication, but only as reprints of the original stories. The X-Men and their adventures would lay dormant for the next 5 years. While not popular with the masses, the outpour from fans proved that their story of social acceptance and perseverance resonated.
The President of Marvel at the time, Al Landeau, suggested the creation of an international super team to help appeal to a wider audience. Writer, Roy Thomas, suggested refitting The X-Men with this new, diverse cast. With this plan set, Marvel tapped writer Len Wein and artist David Cockrum to create what came to be Giant-Size X-Men #1, which was released in 1975.
This new team consisted of Cyclops, Storm, Wolverine, Colossus, Banshee, Sunfire, Nightcrawler, and Thunderbird. Along with the team's new adventure, this issue contained three reprinted stories from X-Men #43, #47, and #57.
Giant is putting it modestly. Compared to usual comics, Giant-Size X-Men #1 featured 4 chapters and 37 pages of original story. That's not including the other three reprinted stories from past issues.
The first chapter, Second Genesis, focuses on Professor Charles Xavier traveling the world and recruiting his new team. Each new character's reactions vary, but they all eventually agree to come with telepathy to his school in New York.
The second chapter, And When There Was One, reveals the reason Professor Xavier recruited them. Cyclops appears and explains his former teammates have all gone missing while on a mission on the remote Pacific island of Krakoa to rescue an unknown mutant. Cyclops and Professor Xavier plead to the new team to help recover the original X-Men.
Chapter three sees the new squad break into teams of two, in order to spread more ground. Storm and Colossus battle through an avalanche, Wolverine and Banshee are attacked by giant crabs, Nightcrawler and Sunfire have to fight giant birds, and Cyclops and Thunderbird are ambushed by creeper vines. Each team survives their obstacle and makes their way to a giant temple that randomly appeared in the center of the island. Once inside, they find their predecessors tied up and being fed on by odd tubes. The Angel comes too and quickly explains that this was all a trap to bring more mutants to the island. The unknown mutant they were looking for is the island itself!
The fourth and final chapter shows the X-Men battling the mutant island, Krakoa.
Read More X-Men
Astonishing X-Men by Joss Whedon and John Cassaday
X-Men by Jonathan Hickman and Leinil Francis Yu
New X-Men by Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely