Uncanny X-Men #328 (January, 1996)

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What’s Inside:                 

Victor Creed has been in the custody of the X-Men for some time. After suffering brain damage, he pretended to be reduced to an innocent animal with no memories of his life in order to fool the X-Men into letting their guard down. All the while, however, his brain was on the mend and his murderous desires have returned.

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During his time playing docile, Sabretooth befriended Boomer, who, along with the rest of X-Force, have temporarily taken shelter with the X-Men. Boomer, furious at having been deceived by Creed, confronts him, with Psylocke close by on guard duty. Creed goads Boomer into blasting him, which is just what he wants; the blast breaks his restraints while his healing factor mends the damage to his body. Sabretooth is free.

Psylocke leaps into action, and a ferocious slugfest ensues.

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When she finally has a chance to use her psychic blade, she stabs Creed right in the temple. Unfortunately, she learns that due to the aforementioned brain damage, Sabretooth is now immune to psychic attacks. In a cinematic and gruesome scene, Sabretooth, with Psylocke in his grasp, raises his fearsome claws and swipes. The next panel is the blood splattering on Boomer’s face, who is across the room. Sabretooth escapes, leaving Boomer to cradle the eviscerated Psylocke in her arms, just as the rest of the X-Men arrive too late at the scene.

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Writer: Scott Lobdell

Artist: Joe Madureira

Colorist: Steve Buccellato

Publisher: Marvel

Why I Kept This Issue:

Joe Madureira will probably always be my favorite X-Men artist. His anime, intentionally cartoony style is so fitting for an X-Men book, even though it took Marvel a while to realize it. As far as I know, he was a trendsetter, for it seemed that after his X-Men run many other comic artists adopting a more stylized and less realistic approach began to pop up.

This issue leads directly into a Sabretooth one-shot, and together they are two of my favorite reading experiences. Being a middle-schooler and reading comics with such melodrama of trust and betrayal and violence…I felt so very sophisticated, though no one else seemed to agree.

Attached Memory:

Well, the middle school choir, which I was regrettably a part of, made fun of me for this issue, just as they had the Sabretooth one-shot. The mean girls, and a few of the boys, saw the cover of this issue and laughed. They were laughing, specifically, at the portrayal of Psylocke. Her very bulbous yet perky boobs and her thong…the class said that they could see her “vagina lips”. They called me a pervert. Said I was sick in the head and must be really sad if I have to look at comic book ladies to get off. They said it was no wonder I didn’t have a girlfriend.

Now, in retrospect, they did have a point; Psylocke’s costume during the ‘90s was pretty inexcusable. That’s Jim Lee and the ‘90s for ya, I guess. In fact, I have never, ever been a fan of Psylocke until very recently, with the new all-female X-Men book. Now that she’s actually wearing some damn clothes, I think she’s pretty badass.

But these kids had no right to make fun of me like they did. I was not a pervert when it came to comics; I did not ogle the female characters’ breasts any more than I did the male characters’ pectorals. They were friggin’ drawings, for chrissakes, and the fact that I couldn’t convince my classmates of that made me so horrendously frustrated. I realize now, though, that it wouldn’t have mattered what I said. When someone wants to be cruel to someone else, they will not allow you to defend yourself.

God, I really hated that choir class…

Condition of My Copy: A few scrapes, but bagged, boarded, and not eviscerated. 

See Also: My Comic Memory of Sabretooth: In the Red Zone.

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