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Why Fantomex Should Return To Comics

If Genesis is to be saved, "Uncle Cluster" needs to return -- but can he?

Normally I am all for character deaths being permanent. In general, I think that if a comic book character is killed off, their death should signify something. Death is death -- it's a big deal. There's no coming back from death; and if comic creators begin to view life and death in this way, then death will carry that much more significance in comics. I would argue this for practically every case in comics -- until I get to thinking about Fantomex.

Putting my feelings for the character to the side, I would argue that he should be present in comics right now, and that having him alive would be better than having him dead. If you've been keeping up with UNCANNY X-FORCE by Rick Remender then you know that the writer recently "killed" Fantomex off in a very poignant scene -- in an effort to save Betsy Braddock from the Skinless Man, Fantomex threw himself into harm's way, and as a result, was murdered as the Skinless Man thrust his fist through his chest and pulled out his heart. I guess if you have to go at the hand of your enemy, that's one way to do it. The thing is, the character is better off alive than he is dead.

== TEASER ==
UNCANNY X-FORCE #27

Recently we got a look at a preview for issue #30 of UNCANNY X-Force and Evan (Genesis) seems to be at the center of it all. To catch those of you who haven't been following up to speed, Evan is the clone of a young Apocalypse who is essentially created by Fantomex. We delved into Genesis' character back in May a little bit and begged the question of whether or not the character has any free will.

Whether he [Fantomex] simply wanted to test a theory, or whether he did it because he felt some remorse at murdering what was still an innocent child; he decided to clone Genesis. He began raising the cloned child in a controlled, virtual environment where he could influence everything that happened to him. By controlling his environment and giving him a very different kind of life, would the boy with these same genes still eventually grow up to become the evil Apocalypse? Would the healthy, loving environment provided by Fantomex affect his free will? Would it influence him to become a good person, disproving the idea that his genetics predetermined whether or not he would grow up to be evil?

Back when I wrote that article, things were very different. Genesis was still a part of the Jean Grey School For Higher Learning and was featured in a big way in Jason Aaron's WOLVERINE AND THE X-MEN. More recently, however, he has been kidnapped by Daken and he has undergone some massive changes. Thrust back into a virtual world, Evan will be manipulated by external forces in UNCANNY X-FORCE #30. Those who follow Apocalypse will manipulate Evan by using a vision of Fantomex, in an effort to turn the boy against his mentor, "Uncle Cluster." This is a pretty big deal.

UNCANNY X-FORCE #30

Imagine what it would be like to be told that everything you have ever known and learned was a complete lie? The repercussions are tremendous, and although the outcome does seem like it will be predictable (anyone else see Evan turning to the "dark side"?), I still can't help but hold out hope for the character, who would make a far more interesting hero than he would a villain. I mean, who doesn't love a great "overcoming the odds" story? I would much rather read about a character that is able to make his own decisions, rather than be bound by predetermination and his DNA -- but I'm not so sure he could do that without the help of the real Fantomex.

No one has been honest with Evan, not even Jean-Philippe. The character still does not know he is a clone of Apocalypse, and something tells me that once that fact is revealed to him, the only individual that could prevent his downward spiral is the only father figure he's ever had. Granted, I totally get that the situation is a little bit weird. Evan is, essentially, a lab rat. He's been conditioned to be what Fantomex wanted him to be, but at the same time, "Uncle Cluster" is a father figure to him. He might be the only one that could save him.

NEW X-MEN #130

So, is there a chance that Fantomex could return in a way that isn't weird and cliche? I would like to think so. E.V.A. was Fantomex's biggest asset -- she was an extension of Fantomex's nervous system; and although that connection was severed following Fantomex's death, I would still like to think that there are some remnants of him that could live on through her. There's also the fact that Fantomex previously "fixed" himself when he got into a sticky situation. Back in NEW X-MEN # 129, Fantomex placed himself in a state of "light auto-hypnosis" in order to heal his own body. Yet, even if he can't do it on his own, there is always E.V.A., an extension of himself. I mean, E.V.A. was birthed from Fantomex, (according to NEW X-MEN #30) so is it that far out there to think that E.V.A. could bring him back? After all, Fantomex wasn't born, he was created. He was Weapon XIII.

What do you think? Do you think Fantomex should return, if so, how? Do you think the character is better off dead? What do you think will happen to Evan? Do you think he will become Apocalypse, or do you believe there is still a chance he can be saved? And what will this mean for the X-Men?

78 Comments
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Posted by InnerVenom123

I'm almost certain that he'll return.

If not, I don't care. He had a good death. And EVA is neat so far.

Posted by Mercy_
Moderator
Posted by longbowhunter

He'll be back, no worries there. I'm excited to see whats in store for Evan. I love the idea of Apocalypse as a child.

Posted by Emperormeister734

He's gotta come back

Posted by Pacperson

i was just starting to really like him too ;-; hope he come back

Posted by Peevo

As a Fantomexual, I was really disappointed that Remender killed him but it does make sense for the story. It feels like a young promising athlete having to retire due to injury before their prime. That being said, he's an anomaly only existing in the 616 universe so that alone leaves a ton of ways for his return. He's Marvel's man of mirrors so he may never have actually been poisoned and died in the first place. Misdirection has some serious deus ex machina to it! Faking a noble death to get Betsy to realize she loves him seems pretty Fantomex-esqe to me.

Seeing the Brotherhood keeping his dead body could be a clue as well. He had 3 known brains and EVA, there's gotta be at least 10 more stashed in random places in the galaxy, right? haha

Posted by Bob_Loblaws_Law_Blog

Errrr.... bit spoilery guys.. I'm behind on X-Force so I haven't read the article but I'm guessing this means he dies :/

I'm normally not one to throw up a fuss on websites, but perhaps a title like 'Fantomex's future in Marvel comics [SPOILERS]' or something along those lines would be more appropriate....

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

Didn't really like him TBH

Posted by x_29

I knew Babs wrote this when i saw the title.

Posted by Aspect

I bet he didn't die and has been sneaking learning how to defeat the new Evil mutants and saves X-force at the last moment.

Posted by DeadpoolTattooGuy

As much as I liked the original Uncanny X-Force with Fantomex, I think his death is necessary to push Evan to decide weather to accept his destiny or rebel against it. As long as they don't kill Deadpool, I have no problem. Uncanny X-Force is a great series and I can't wait to see what happens.

Posted by Webjaker

@Bob_Loblaws_Law_Blog said:

Errrr.... bit spoilery guys.. I'm behind on X-Force so I haven't read the article but I'm guessing this means he dies :/

I'm normally not one to throw up a fuss on websites, but perhaps a title like 'Fantomex's future in Marvel comics [SPOILERS]' or something along those lines would be more appropriate....

100% agreed you forgot the spoilers tag

Posted by The_Diamond_Prince

I do hope Remender brings him back, though he does seem to love killing off characters and making it stick (i.e. AOX characters being completely obliterated). I'd bet that if he really had his way and wasn't swayed by editorial , Warren would have "truly" died.

But as long as Remender keeps writing these amazingly fleshed out stories, he can do what ever he pleases.

Posted by Eivion

I don't think Fantomex is need for Evan to be saved. If anything it would likely be harder due to the pain and anger Evan might feel for Fantomex's betrayal. Besides I liked the death Remender gave him.

Posted by Mutant X

Nice spoiler...

Posted by TheMultiverse

He most likely has already had EVA start his clone up. i like EVA though.

Posted by dewboy01

Why not? we need more GI joe masked mens.

Posted by judasnixon

 Le Pew'll be back in no time to beat Skinless Man to death with a cheap box of wine, 
after that him, and Northstar are going to get some waffle fries at Chic Fil A!

Posted by jl81790

Nope. He's dead and I'd love for him to stay that way.

Posted by JamDamage

I love Fantomex. He was a great and interesting character. It would be a shame to keep him dead. I think it work better if he was brought back sooner then later too. His popularity has grown a bunch and it's more solid right now. Bringing him back later I think would water him down a bit. I hope he returns.

Posted by JonesDeini

They killed my boy off? Heh, didn't see that coming. Nobody stays dead and ultimately superhero deaths are meaningless, ESPECIALLY in the Marvel U and even more so when it comes to X-Men characters. Some writer/editor who's a fan will eventually bring him back on the scene.

Edited by cc1738

I just bought the first trade and it is the most amazing series I've read in awhile. I always wondered why there was so much hype about Uncanny X-Force and now I know. It is so much better than practically any other title I'm getting.

Posted by spikevalentine

God knows Uncanny X-Force is my favorite current title, but it is time to read the real deal, GAMBIT!!! And hopefully you'll get to read what I have planned for the Ragin' Cajun in the future.

Anyway, the thing is that, for me, Fantomex is the poor man's Gambit; Grant Morrison obviously made his own version of this rascal archetype (in his own way) to take the spot Gambit left in the X-Men (yes, I am aware of the Fantômas/Diabolique relationship: the name, the suit, the mask... but where does the trenchcoat, the weird dark past, the social dynamics with the mutants really come from? Those are trades we already saw with Remy that none of the other elegant European cynical thieves have. I have concluded that Fantomex is really based on this three characters. The only thing that seems strange to me is that Gambit and Fantomex exist in the exact same quadrant of the Marvel Universe.

Posted by They Killed Cap!

I loved the Fantomex charecter, I would like to see him come back.

Edited by pspin

If he came back, that would be great because he is a great character but if he didn't he that is fine becasue his death had meaning and was pretty unique

Posted by TheFizz

He died in the most noble way a character of his makeup could possibly muster. Remender is going to bring this story thread with Evan and X-Force, full circle, to his first arc and what Fantomex did to that kid Apocalypse.

I know one thing for certain, you don't doubt Rick Remender. I can't wait to see what he has up his sleeve.

Posted by Grey56

It seems likely that he'll return given Marvel's historical MO for character placement. How it will be done and as to the fate of Evan - that seems less clear. Either way, the story of Evan as being a Luke or Anakin will prove interesting to watch as he continues to grow.

Posted by Necrotic_Lycanthrope

I say don't resurrect him, but rather have like a ghost or phantom version of him return, either as an electronic ghost by using Cerebro or some other X-device, or through a vision, kind of like how Uncle Ben talked to Peter in a vision in Spider-man 2.

Posted by The Black Hood

I'm glad he's dead and I hope he stays that way. I didn't mind him until they paired him with Psylocke, then I ceased tolerating him.

Edited by JoseDRiveraTCR7

Look, Sara, I know you like him, but you're like the only one. He'll probably come back though.

Posted by GBrutality

awesome article.

i hope you're right that EVA somehow brings fantomex back because i don't know, first danger and now this? i'm just not that interested in a character that's going to have that whole robot-trying-to-understand-humans thing. fantomex really surprised me in x-force by how captivating he could be.

i also completely agree in that evan should stay the course and become a hero.

the apocalypse story has been done to death at this point. that's why the whole archangel basically becoming apocalypse idea was so good and made a ton of sense. deep within him was a piece of apocalypse, or at least what apocalypse was, during archangel's inception. though he shares the same DNA as apocalypse, genesis doesn't have to follow the same path because why would he other than he has been lied to? was it manipulative, sure. but the overall reasoning was good. apocalypse never had an upbringing that was nurturing. granted, he was born during the time of pharaohs and ancient egypt, but still he grew up wanting to be a ruler and a savior with a messiah complex. genesis got shown someone could care. he's been having trouble at the school, but some are willing to play nice. the x-men have had some truly powerful mutants on their team, but the idea of genesis having the kind of power as the person he was cloned from is too interesting of a concept to pass up.

Posted by Metron144

I'm a little surprised that people don't like Fantomex. He looks so generic, but once you read a book with him in it, you realise that he's one of the most original characters created in nearly 15 years. He's a total breath of fresh air for mre. I really do hope they bring him back.

Posted by secondfallen616

Great article for reals, i've been so consumed with the DC chaos that i've been missing out on all this.....so ashamed of my self, but, thanks to this article, tomorrow i'm going to start looking for back issues and getting caught up. One question though, since EVA's an extension of F.'s nervous system, then wouldn't his, i guess, spirit/soul/chi be inside of EVA? The Skinless Man's a pretty terrifying character, glad he wasn't around when i was a kid lol. Screw tomorrow i'm starting now, thanks Babs.

Posted by PhoenixoftheTides

He should stay dead. I'm sure Evan will become Apocalypse for a storyline and then turn back.

Posted by JamDamage

@Bob_Loblaws_Law_Blog: he died 3 issues back. I understand about getting spoiled on something recent, but Marvel has been kicking these issues out pretty quickly. It was time to talk about Fantomex's death.

Posted by JamDamage

@Mutant X: he died 3 issues back.

Posted by Mutant X

@JamDamage: Eh, still feels a little soon.

Posted by broo1232

Don't comeback but I don't see how he can.

Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus

It would seem to me keeping Fantomex dead would guarantee that Apocalypse would return for sure. In all honesty I want death to mean something in comics, even if it runs the risk of Genesis becoming something terrible. I can only really see EVA as possibly being the way in which he can return, and if it does happen that's all well and fine, but if it doesn't that's alright as well. Big time Fantomex fan one way or another.

Edited by hyenascar

Holy hell, no more rebirths. No more coming back from the dead. Death holds absolutely no meaning any more. There is AB-SO-LUTELY NO ONE I would want to come back. They could kill anyone in the Marvel universe, or DC universe, and i would not want them brought back. There are several i love and i would not want them back. Least of all Fantomex. He grew on me as i read through. His death actually accomplishes something. Hell no, don't bring him back.

Know why they keep bringing the characters back from the dead? YOU. You who is whining about a character being dead and you want them back. (To further demonstrate my point take your index finger from either hand, or heck both of them, and point them at your face.) Yes, you. STOP IT!

Their are a wealth of stories we could make if people learned to accept the deaths and writers moved on to new characters. Heck, maybe they could just write legacy characters. (Ex: someone taking a dead superheros mantle for their own.) I'm sure you can think of a few recent examples that have worked.

Posted by MagmaGazer

Loved this article.

Posted by Novemberx2

i never really like him, i didn't really understand his mutation. like emma frost he was one of those mutants which made stop reading x-men

Posted by Wowlock

I can't help but worry about how Evan gonna be the next ''Marvel Event ! '' when he goes berserk and start killing things.

Posted by Green ankh

Fantomex is a stupid character

Posted by jcbart

I hope he doesn't return, honestly. His story wasn't finished or taken to it's most logical conclusion, but I like that. I like that he didn't do what he set out to do, but he did save Betsy, and there was still hope for Evan when he died. I like that there's still the question of nature dangling over his head. Was he programmed to do this all along? Was he meant to create Genesis so that Evan could then rise as a more powerful Apocalypse? Was Fantomex's sole purpose to subconsciously infiltrate X-Force and tear them apart from the inside-out?

All of these are fascinating and ambiguous questions that I like the idea of not being answered. We don't need everything spelt out to us, and the return of Fantomex will undermine it.

Also, I really like the idea of EVA becoming Fantomex's successor. A Fantomex.2, as it were.

Posted by LordRequiem

He shouldn't be.

Posted by Liara

I hope he does, even tough I agree with the dead characters should stay dead - part. I like him and I think his return could become really interesting and important for Evans development.

Posted by davelecave

I LOVE Fantomex and although I hate the constant resurrections, he needs to come back.

Posted by Fascism

He JUST died.

Posted by Solarflare32

He should stay dead and eva should be used to carry on his story

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