A variant cover for X-Men ’92 gives each hero a graduating title, showing why fans have never gotten over the classic ’90s animated team.
The incredibly talented artist Amy Reeder has released an iconic ’90s Yearbook-style variant cover for the upcoming X-Men ’92: House of XCII #5, giving the core X-Men team hilarious and spot-on “superlatives.” Yearbook superlatives have been around for decades but gained prominence in the ’90s as a way to highlight graduating senior successes as well as lightly poke fun at their journeys through high school, and Reeder’s X-Men cover captures that energy perfectly.
The X-Men debuted in 1963 but had major resurgences in the 1970s with the start of Chris Claremont’s legendary 16-year run writing the comics, and again in the ’90s with the release of X-Men: The Animated Series and the general increase in comics interest at the time. Classic characters like Cyclops, Jean Gray, and Storm became beloved pop culture icons in the ’90s and Marvel Comics shifted the X-Men’s tone to a more bombastic ’90s aesthetic, highlighted in an emphasis on huge muscles and guns seen in the likes of Bishop and Cable.
X-Men ’92: House of XCII – by Steve Foxe with art by Salvador Espin and Israel Silva – is a new series from Marvel Comics that evokes the spirit of X-Men: The Animated Series. The five-issue limited series reimagines Jonathan Hickman’s acclaimed 2019 release of the X-Men – House of X/Powers of X – as if it happened back in the ’90s, with ’90s X-Men characters and attitudes, and will go all the way up through the recent Inferno event. Amy Readeran Eisner Award-nominated artist and writer known for her work on Madame Xanadu and Amethystrevealed her variant cover on Twitter, boldly proclaiming,”I love the 90s and the 90s love me.” Her brilliant and hilarious art features a yearbook-style page with classic ’90s neon color and eye-catching design, while awarding some of the most famous X-Men superlatives like “most school spirit.”
Rogue is given the honor of “Best Hair,” since her massive ’90s hairstyle was a beloved part of her character design at the time, while her longterm love interest Gambit gets the “Heartbreaker” title since he was certainly a ladies man before settling down with Rogue. Ironically Cyclops, who literally can never show his eyes without shooting out concussive force blasts, is given the superlative of “Best Eyes” (both Emma Frost and Jean Gray have commented on how pretty his eyes are when they have used their psychic abilities to control his power), while Jubilee is appropriately given the title “Most School Spirit,” since she was all about the Xavier Institute as the youngest member of the X-Men in the ’90s.
Brilliantly, Reeder gives Wolverine the title of “Life of the Party” and draws him in a blur, making it clear he had no interest in sitting for the photographer, while on the opposite side Beast is named “Teacher’s Pet” – a relatively dark award given he was Xavier’s secret understudy on the morally dubious Illuminati. Jean and Storm are honored with predictions of future success, though this may be ironic in Jean’s case, as while she’s currently mutantkind’s version of Supermanshe faced a lot of tragedy on the road to this position.
Overall, the cover highlights how the ’90s team combined many different personalities into the perfect stew of drama and heroism. The ’90s X-Men were such an integral part of so many people’s childhoods, and thanks to gorgeous art like Amy Reeder’s and the amazing X-Men ’92: House of XCII series, younger Marvel Comics fans can fall in love with them as well!
Source: Amy Reader
X-Men ’92: House of XCII #5 is coming from Marvel Comics September 14.
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