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Generation X #4

Writer: Scott Lobdell

Penciller: Chris Bachalo

Inker: Mark Buckingham

Colours: Steve Buccellato & Electric Crayon.

Rating: *****

Title: Between the cracks.

Description: Banshee with four of the GenXer's, Jubilee, M, Skin and Synch, are on a field trip when they come to a road block. A police officer tells them that they'll have to make a detour as the bridge to one of the towns, Faybrook, is closed. M tells the team that she studied a map before they left and that there's no bridge. Meanwhile, in Faybrook, police attempt to coax a boy called Eliot out of the school house. It appears that he has taken some children and a teacher hostage, everyone assumes that he's a mutant as he is malformed. Back at the Academy Chamber offers Penance a plate of apples while Paige looks on. In Faybrook the police wait for Eliot's parents to arrive and the shadowy assassin, who appeared in the last two issues, talks to 'Nanny'. He is confused because Eliot is not showing as a mutant on his monitors but gets 'ready to do his part' anyway. Oblivious of the assassin, Generation X use their powers to take out the SWAT team surrounding the school and Synch attempts to synch with Eliot. Jubilee finds out what is happening, Eliot transferred to Faybrook's school but was immediately kicked out. He just wanted to go to school. Synch locks onto an unidentified mutant but it isn't Eliot, it's the assassin inside the ice-cream truck. The teacher, Mr. Lorenanzo, collapses. His heart can't take the strain. Meanwhile Jubilee climbs through the sewers and into the basement of the school. Outside the assassin, Orphan Maker, emerges from the ice-cream truck. He makes orphans out of mutants whose parents 'aren't brave enought to love them'. He attacks Eliot's parents but is stopped by Banshee. In the school house Jubilee makes her way to where Eliot is. The kids run past her. She goes into the classroom and finds Eliot holding the teacher in his arms, Mr Lorenanzo has died. Outside the other GenXer's defeat Orphan Maker who promptly escapes. They all reconvene outside and discuss what just happened. According to Synch's power Eliot isn't a mutant at all, just born ugly and hated because he was different.

Comments: Loved this issue, even if the way Generation X became involved seemed a little too contrived; just happened to be out on that particular day in that particular area. But there were some nice moments such as when Chamber reaches out to Penance or just when Jubilee reaches Eliot in the school house and consoles him on the death of his teacher. It was good that Eliot wasn't a mutant with glamorous powers, but just someone who would never fit in because he wasn't 'normal'.

Note - The Age of Apocalypse crossover occurred after this and Generation X became Generation next. There were four issues of Gen next but I, unfortunately, do not have them. They should be coming soon though.