Maybe it’s the television shows. Maybe it’s the movies. Maybe it’s the new titles in the comic shops.
Whatever the reason, there’s no question that, finally, the X-Men are regaining their old esteem with collectors. Out of the top 100 Hottest Comics over the past month, 27 of those are X-Men or directly related titles, such as New Mutants, X-Force, Deadpool, and Wolverine. I also included the first appearances of Sabretooth and Wolverine in that number despite being in non-X-Men books.
For this article, let’s focus on the biggest movers on the list. Of course “New Mutants” #98 and “New Mutants” #87 - the first appearances of Deadpool and Cable, respectively - are always in the top 10, with NM 98 a mainstay in the top three. “Incredible Hulk” #181 is another comic that stays in the top 100 no matter what the other X-Men books are doing in the market. Since these three are consistently popular, I won’t be including them any further in order to give attention to the X-titles that have made some of the most progress on the list.
DAYS OF FUTURE PAST
It’s been three years since the masterful “X-Men: Days of Future Past” premiered on the silver screen, and it remains, in my opinion, the best of the X-Men films. After three years, the popularity of that movie no longer rubs onto the comics when it comes to collectibility. And for a time, the two comics of the same name dropped along with most of the other X-Men comics. But now things are changing.
“Uncanny X-Men” #141 skyrocketed into the top 100 this month in huge fashion. Only weeks ago, part one of “Days of Future Past” was in danger of falling out of the top 200 hottest comics. This week, it has moved from #196 all the way to #45. The sister comic, “Uncanny X-Men” #142, made respectable moves as well. Part two is currently up 96 places and stands in 84th.
THE NEW TEAM
With the rising popularity of the X-titles and Wolverine key issues, it makes sense that the first two appearances of the “new” team are well established in the top 100.
First off is “Giant-Size X-Men” #1. This one is packed with keys all in one issue despite the fact that part of it contains a reprinted story. For one thing, after 93 issues of what many felt was a Fantastic Four knockoff, GSX #1 breathed new life into the X-Men by adding Wolverine, Storm, Colossus, Nightcrawler, and the ill-fated Thunderbird to the team. Speaking of Wolverine, this issue also contains his second full appearance, which was part of the driving force behind the new team’s immediate popularity as fans fell in love with the Canadian superhero as soon as “Incredible Hulk” #181 hit store shelves. GSX #1 has now risen 30 places and is 14th overall.
Following behind GSX #1 is “X-Men” #94, which is now 39th after gaining 17 spots.
When it comes to X-Men lore, this is one of the most important comics to the series. “X-Men” #94 was the first issue written by Chris Claremont in his historic 17-year tenure on the title. Claremont went on to co-create the most famous X-Men stories and many of the most popular characters, including Gambit, Phoenix (I realize Claremont didn’t create Jean Grey, but he did create the Phoenix force), Sabretooth, Legion, the New Mutants, Mystique, Psylocke, Emma Frost, the Hellfire Club, Captain Britain, Kitty Pryde, Magik, the Shi’ar, Forge, Alpha Flight, and many, many others.
And it all began with this comic. It is very much deserving of its place in the top 100 comics.
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