When Grant Morrison left the X-Men with the storyline ‘Here Comes Tomorrow’, most of his ongoing plots and themes were wrapped up. But did you know that he left in a subplot which connects EVERYTHING together, and nobody picked up on it whatsoever? Read on and I’ll tell you all about it!
The central villain of New X-Men is Sublime, a sentient bacteria which possesses and controls various characters along the course of the series. Most notably, halfway through the series we’re shown that he can be inhaled as part of an illegal mutant drug called ‘Kick’. Taking a hit of Kick will give you feeling of grandeur… and allow Sublime to slowly start taking over your body. The final storyline features the aftereffects of this, as Beast – having become addicted to Kick – becomes violently insane and sets about destroying the world.
He’s stopped, of course, but only because this timeline gets shut down by Jean Grey. She goes back in time and removes Sublime from ever having infected Beast, meaning this future dystopia never happens. However, Jean did not realise one thing – Sublime did more than possess Beast. Years before she was even born, he possessed somebody far more important – Charles Xavier.
I’ll rewind. Kick is used at various points by various characters, but is always characterised the same way – the person’s eyes glow with blue power, which signifies that Sublime is possessing them and amplifying their powers. Sophie Cuckoo is a character who dies because Sublime overloads her and she suffers massive brain damage – her eyes glow blue. And when Charles Xavier manifests his psychic powers, his eyes also glow blue.
Xavier’s first act as a mutant is performed in the womb, weirdly enough. He kills a creature pretending to be his twin sister, in the process knocking his pregnant mother down a set of stairs. It’s this sequence, here —
This is revealed in a silent issue, and is known only to the core members of the X-Men after this point – Beast, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Wolverine and Emma Frost. Xavier killed his twin, although we don’t know how he did it exactly. The most important thing here is that nobody else knew about this apart from the X-Men.
Except… one character does. There’s a character in issue #153, the final storyline set during the dystopia caused by Sublime-possessed Beast, who references this story. Her name is ‘Koo Koo’. Or, as you can guess, Cuckoo. She’s a sister to Sophie, who died all these years ago during the main body of Morrison’s run. The Cuckoos sisters all share an empathic link, and were revealed to have been created by Sublime as part of the ‘Weapon X’ project which also created Wolverine, Fantomex, and Deadpool. They know about Sublime.
When Koo Koo is attacked by Sublime controlled villains, she says “its eyes… something came through its eyes… I remember”.
She goes on further to say “he fell… he fell like that time… on his knees… that day they all fell on the stairs…”
Which is a direct reference to Xavier getting his powers, killing his sister, and knocking his mother down the stairs of her house. What Koo Koo is realising here is that she knows about everything Sublime has ever done – and one of those things was activating Charles Xavier’s mutant gene. Sublime created Charles Xavier!
Morrison’s run is full of bits and pieces, but this piece of complicated story can only be seen by jumping backwards and forwards through his run, creating a narrative thread which moves through time at random. Sublime is not just the main villain of the New X-Men run – he’s also the entire reason the X-Men exist to begin with. Without him possessing Xavier, Xavier could have died in the womb. And without Xavier, there are no X-Men!
Flipping ‘eck, Grant Morrison!