(Confused? Check out the inspiration for these posts at G. Kendall's awesome Not Blog X, and check out the previous NBE posts here.)
Credits: Alan Davis (plot); Scott Lobdell (script) (Script), Joe Madureira (Pencils), Joe Rubinstein (p. 1-19); Hector Collazo (p. 20-22) (Inks), Kevin Tinsley (Colors), Ken Lopez (Letters).
While Cerise and Feron try to reverse the transmutation of Captain Britain and Meggan, the other members of Excalibur and the X-Men aren't as dead as they looked last time, instead being held captive by the Troll Associates. Nightcrawler seemingly betrays his friends and sides with the rebelous Fairie Folk, who want to kill the human race and take control of the planet. It's a ruse, of course, and it pays off once Nightcrawler fetches Feron to break the magical chains holding the two teams, and battling the Trolls. With some help from Tom Jones , the mutant who caused this problem in the first place, the teams are able to take it to their captors. In the end, Tom and his mother are freed, the Trolls are defeated, and the remaining Fairie Folk are transported to the Crazy Gang's Wonderland to live in peace (revealing the narrator of the story to be the Jester).
I Love The 90s
Jubilee says she couldn't have more fun if she was watching "90210."
A nice conclusion to the previous issue, even if it does cheat a little bit with the explosive cliffhanger, with Jester simply explaining that superheroes -- mutants in particular -- are notorious difficult to kill. Nightcrawler's turn is pretty blatantly a ruse, to the point where Kitty and Cyclops discuss the fact that he has to up to something. The "betrayl" leads to some funny moments, including Nightcrawler teleporting Feron in front of some bewildered Trolls, who assume that the mystic "has slain the elf," and then Nightcrawler and Cerise's reconciliation, where the Shi'ar once more partakes of her favorite Earth custom, the "lip massage."
Madureira's pencils are slightly better this time out, although there is one panel of Gambit "raging" which is so bad, I'd almost think it was intentional. The action flows nicely and never gets too confusing. Still not my cup of tea, and a huge change of pace from the usual smooth Davis art, but acceptable enough, especially considering the use of the X-Men. In the end, a fun little two-parter, hampered most by the excessive use of continuity footnotes (I, for one, like footnotes, but this is a bit ridiculous) and the unusual-for-the-title-but-not-for-the-era artwork. A novice Excalibur fan could read these two and not be too lost, but might wonder what the heck all the footnotes are for.