X-Men: ReGenesis

Uncanny X-Force: Fall and Rise

Rick Remender discusses the end of the Dark Angel Saga and the future ahead for his team in Regenesis!

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By Justin F. Gabrie

“Anytime anyone murders or kills, they have no idea what the consequences could turn out to be, especially if the target’s considered evil since whoever takes their place could potentially be worse.”

Writer Rick Remender offers these ominous words as UNCANNY X-FORCE circles to the close of its first year and the conclusion of the Dark Angel Saga, the next chapter upcoming in issue #16 on October 5.

UNCANNY X-FORCE #16 preview art by Jerome Opena

As one of the founding members of the X-Men, Angel lost his wings during the infamous “Mutant Massacre” storyline. Tempted by the villain Apocalypse to have them replaced, Warren Worthington joined his Four Horsemen as the Archangel of Death. Eventually, the X-Man seemingly had his Archangel persona expunged and returned to being Angel, but all things involving Apocalypse can be deceiving.

Remender points out that the entire story has been a direct result from the bullet Fantomex shot through the head of Apocalypse’s latest incarnation in UNCANNY X-FORCE #4.  Like a domino effect, those events have been unraveling over the course of the first three arcs with Archangel rising to the forefront, consuming Warren once more. The situation becomes dire after a new revelation states that as Celestial servants of evolution, once an Apocalypse dies his or her Death ascends into the role.

“Archangel has been dormant in Warren for a long time,” says Remender. “Then in the last incarnation of X Force, his alternate persona re-emerged. It's interesting because prior to that, he rejoined the X-Men and went to do his own things. The simple brilliance of Apocalypse choosing Warren as his Archangel of Death [is that] Angel's a member of the family; everybody loves him. No one notices this murderous second personality percolating in the background until it’s too late and no one would take any preemptive strikes against him. They would first try to find another way to stop him. Even after they realize that he’s beyond control, killing indiscriminately, they’re still not ready to kill him.

UNCANNY X-FORCE #16 preview art by Jerome Opena

“The end of the saga will hit people on the side of the head. We’re not going to talk about it. We’re not even going to announce anything. We’re just going to do it. I think when people get there they will have enjoyed what we have done. We've had the stuff plotted out since issue one. It's a nice sort of end-cap to X-Force’s first year.”

Remender teases that the second year of UNCANNY X-FORCE will tie closely with another book he’ll be working on that has yet to be announced, which will in turn have major Marvel Universe-wide consequences.

“Not that it should be hallmark of a good story but I do think that a good story has lasting ramifications,” he states. “We all want to read stories that matter, stories that change the landscape of the characters that we care about, focusing on their relationships. Same way we dusted off and reinvented the Apocalypse mythology, we plan to do the same for two other mythologies. The first one we have already announced: Other World. It will be a great place to define Psylocke for our readers and to deal with her background given that Betsy is the sister of Brian Braddock [the hero Captain Britain] and Jamie Braddock [the reality-warping villain]. The second, I can’t talk about yet.”

At his disposal, the writer will continue to have a wealth of amazing artists, joining the ranks of those stalwarts who have already contributed to UNCANNY X-FORCE.

“Other World is a wonderful four-issue story arc with Greg Tocchini, whose artwork on it has been astounding,” promises Remender. “Definitely on the same level as the great Jerome Opena. With Jerome and Greg working on alternating arcs, joining them will be the brilliant Robbi Rodriguez coming in to do the art chores for another Point One issue.”

UNCANNY X-FORCE #16 preview art by Jerome Opena

As X-Force charges toward the Regenesis era, it’s no secret that Wolverine will be undertaking significant change as he establishes a new X-Men team. Regardless of this, Remender feels it alters very little for X-Force, just adding another job to the team’s list.

“The membership will go through a shake up,” he notes. “Kieron Gillen, Jason Aaron [writers on UNCANNY X-MEN and WOLVERINE AND THE X-MEN, respectively] and I have been working very closely to make sure that it all interconnects. Expect an entire arc in each of those books to be built around things that have come from the Dark Angel Saga. Then we plan to circle back around in a year and reconvene so these books continue to tie into one another since X-Force’s continued existence rocks the X world in a big way for years to come.

“I think if you're an X-Men fan like I am, it’s a hell of a time to be reading the books. There will be some incredibly exciting things coming up. Working very closely with [editor] Jody [LeHeup] and [Senior Editor] Nick [Lowe], I find they have a real enthusiasm for the material and really care. I believe soon we’ll experience a new Golden age to the X-line; it's just such a solid family of books across the line.”

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