From the Mouths of Babes
And there it is folks! It took a 3 issues (plus a 4 part prequel series that gave us next to nothing), but there it is. The Schism that is going to cause the X-men to split in half created over: Sending a child into battle and her becoming a murderer.
Scott Summers has always been the calm, collected (if a bit cold and withdrawn) leader of the X-men. He has been forced to make unbelievable choices for the sake of his entire species and he’s had to make them while looking at the big picture rather than each individual life. He’s lost family, friends and the love of his life all for a dream that was not his to begin with, but one which he has taken up and taken to new heights while the man who raised him as a son fell to his lowest point. So as Cyclops, the leader of the free mutant world, he was put into a position where all of his soldiers were down and his last warrior, albeit his youngest and arguably least experienced one, and had to make a call. Now, the question remains, was it the right one? When he gave Idie leave to do as she saw fit, leading her to kill a dozen Hellfire Club soldiers, was that the right choice? Or should it have even been a choice at all?
Now Wolverine on the other hand, despite being heart and soul to the X-men, has never really been much for the leader role. He’s always been the leader’s right hand (whether it be Professor X, Cyclops or Storm) and challenging the X-rulers at every turn, but he has also always had a soft spot for children who are pulled into the chaotic life of an X-man too early. Starting back with Kitty Pryde, and then later Jubilee and more recently Hope, Logan has a history of taking the X-kiddies under his wing and protecting them fiercely. In a recent issue of Uncanny X-men, he even explained to Hope that he does not want to get close to her just in case he someday has to be the one to put her down. With his sweet spot for kids in mind, its completely understandable that he felt so strongly against putting Idie in the middle of battle especially since he felt that he was close enough to stop the bomb himself. But was that really his call? Should he have followed orders and Cyclops’ lead and supported his decision regardless of whether he agreed or not? Or did he do the right thing by trying to stop Idie’s life changing actions?
Well let’s think about it… In the middle of a major firefight, with many of his heavy hitters downed, Cyclops unfortunately did not have the luxury of looking at a 14 year old girl, he saw the only weapon he had left. That’s a sad drawback of the lifestyle they choose to lead, they lose their chance at a real childhood. Now maybe, Idie did not have to kill all of them, but that does not make her a murderer (as the subsequent Generation Hope issue postulates), it makes her and her innocence an unfortunate casualty in this current war. As for Wolverine, well to be honest, he seems wrong in this situation. First and foremost, he WASN’T close enough to help and stop the bomb. By the time he showed up on the scene al the damage would have been done, so actually, if Idie hadn’t sprang into action there would have been even more deaths including possibly her own. And truthfully, in my honest opinion, Wolverine was way out of line. The team, for better or for worse, has trusted Scott Summers to make the tough calls for the group for years now, and have had to trust that he knows what he is doing. He is considered a tactical master by many prominent fighters in the Marvel Universe, so whether he agrees or not, Wolverine should have trusted that Scott had considered all the options before sending a mere child into battle.
I am so glad that we finally know what the cause of the Schism is, and I am devastated that we now have to wait an ENTIRE MONTH for the next issues of Schism (both the main book and Generation Hope). It seems to me that the story took entirely took long to get off the ground but its finally picking up speed. I especially like the use of old X-men villains like the Hellfire Club and the Sentinels in new ways and in new forms. The all human, all child Inner Circle is enthralling and I really hope they aren’t killed or completely defeated by the end of this storyline as I think they would make great regular enemies for at least one of the new teams of X-men.