Appearing in "Deadly Genesis!"
- Professor X (Charles Xavier) (Main story and flashback)
- Cyclops (Scott Summers) (Main story and flashback)
- Marvel Girl (Jean Grey) (Main story and flashback)
- Angel (Warren Worthington III) (Main story and flashback)
- Iceman (Bobby Drake) (Main story and flashback)
- Havok (Alex Summers) (Main story and flashback)
- Lorna Dane (Main story and flashback)
- Wolverine (Logan) (Joins team)
- Storm (Ororo Munroe) (First appearance) (Joins team)
- Nightcrawler (Kurt Wagner) (First appearance) (Joins team)
- Colossus (Peter Rasputin) (First appearance) (Joins team)
- Thunderbird (John Proudstar) (First appearance) (Joins team)
- Banshee (Sean Cassidy) (Joins team)
- Sunfire (Shiro Yoshida) (Joins team)
- Mr. Rasputin (First appearance)
- Mrs. Rasputina (First appearance)
- Illyana Rasputin (First appearance)
- Major Chasen (First appearance)
- Krakoa (First appearance) (Main story and flashback) (Origin revealed)
- Unnamed Winzeldorf mob
- Various Grand Ole Opry attendees
- Unnamed Kenyans
- Unnamed Russian farmhands
- Reed Richard (Mentioned)
- Nightcrawler's Circus (Mentioned)
Races and Species:
- Earth (Main story and flashback)
- Secret government airbase
- United States of America
- X-Uniforms (Main story and flashback)
- Cyclops' Visor (Main story and flashback)
- Havok's Suit (Main story and flashback)
- Wolverine's Suit
Synopsis for "Deadly Genesis!"
Chapter 1: Second Genesis
In Winzeldorf, Germany, an angry mob rages through the streets in search of a monster: the mutant Kurt Wagner. Kurt pleads that he only wants to be left alone, but the hysterical mob attack and overwhelm him through sheer numbers. Suddenly, the whole mob literally freezes in their tracks, subdued by Professor Charles Xavier’s telepathy. Xavier offers Kurt refuge at his school, which is a haven for mutants. Kurt asks if the Professor can make him normal, but he responds by asking if, after that night, he truly wants to be normal (i.e., like his persecutors). Kurt accepts the Professor’s invitation.
Quebec, Canada: Professor X visits a government base and meets Major Chasen and the mutant referred to as Weapon X, but better known as Wolverine. Charles offers Wolverine a chance to join him and become a free agent, an offer Wolverine accepts on the spot. Chasen objects but Wolverine officially resigns from duty by slicing off his tie. As Wolverine leaves, Chasen warns him this isn’t over.
Nashville, Tennessee: Banshee is attending a show at the Grand Ole Opry when he receives a telepathic message from the Professor with an urgent plea for help. He quickly agrees to do what he can.
Kenya, Africa: A woman named Ororo is being worshipped by local tribesmen as a rain/fertility goddess. Xavier approaches her with an offer he hopes she will not refuse. After listening to his request, she accepts.
Osaka, Japan: Xavier pays a visit to Sunfire, pitching him a similar offer. Sunfire is disinterested in helping white westerners, but reasons that he owes it to himself to test his abilities.
On a commune in Siberia, Farmer Piotr Rasputin is harvesting crops when a fellow farmhand notices a neighbor's tractor has gone out of control and is heading straight for Piotr’s young sister Illyana. As Piotr runs towards her, he transforms into a giant metal being. The tractor collides with him but is destroyed by the impact with Piotr’s metallic body. Xavier invites him to come to America to his school. Upon asking his parents’ permission, he accepts Xavier's offer.
Arizona: An Apache Indian, John Proudstar, chases a bison on the plain, easily chasing it down and tackling it. Xavier offers him acceptance into his school. Proudstar refuses to help a white man at first, but Professor X counters that perhaps he is just a coward. Infuriated, Proudstar accepts Xavier's offer in order to prove him wrong.
Chapter 2: And When There Was OneThe seven disparate mutants meet at Xavier’s school in Westchester and are given new costumes composed of unstable molecules. A narrative caption relates that Professor X gave each of the international students instant fluency in English, via telepathy. Proudstar questions why Xavier has brought them together. Xavier introduces them to Cyclops, who makes a dramatic entrance sporting a new visor and slightly redesigned costume. He informs them that this new team of X-Men has been assembled to find and rescue the missing original team.
Cyclops shows them Cerebro, the mutant-detecting supercomputer which Xavier used to find them. A flashback depicts that just recently, Cerebro had alerted Professor X and the original team (Cyclops, Marvel Girl, Angel, Iceman, Havok, and Lorna Dane) to the existence of an extremely powerful mutant on the remote Pacific island of Krakoa. The team headed off to find this mutant (there is a passing mention to the Beast having departed from the team). Immediately upon their arrival, they were ambushed. Later, an amnesiac Cyclops awoke alone on the X-Men’s stratojet, which was already in flight on cruise control. His visor was missing but his eyes were inexplicably no longer emitting optic blasts. Upon returning to Xavier’s school, though, his optic blast began firing once again but with more power than ever; so much more power in fact that Professor X had to build a new new visor for Cyclops to control them.
Sunfire initially refuses to participate on the rescue mission and flies off in a huff. The rest of the new members agree, however, and depart in the stratojet. In midair, though, the group see Sunfire flying alongside their plane. He boards it and tells Cyclops he’s changed his mind and will participate in the mission.
Chapter 3: Assault Force
As the Stratojet approaches Krakoa Isle, Cyclops directs the team to split up into pairs: Storm (Ororo) and Colossus (Piotr), Banshee and Wolverine, Sunfire and Nightcrawler (Kurt), and lastly Thunderbird (Proudstar) and Cyclops. There are minor disagreements and bickering among the new members, who are still just a pack of strangers to each other.
Cyclops and Thunderbird land the Stratojet and begin their search. They have barely begun exploring the island before the Stratojet vanishes inexplicably. Upon seeing a temple in the distance, they head towards it. En route, they are attacked by creeper vines but take care of them quickly.Along the shore, Wolverine and Banshee are attacked by giant crabs. Elsewhere, Colossus and Storm trek toward the temple and are nearly struck by an avalanche. As they run for cover, the rocks follow them and Colossus uses a tree as a makeshift bat to swat them away. Finally, Nightcrawler and Sunfire battle a group of angry birds. Nightcrawler teleports around the attacking birds while Sunfire just blasts them. Each pair of heroes has spotted the temple and they all convene outside of it.
They enter the temple, busting through a pair of tightly-sealed doors. Inside, they find the missing X-Men. Weird tendrils bind the captives and appear to feed off them. The new team quickly gets their predecessors to (relative) safety outside. The Angel scolds Cyclops for returning. He explains that this was all just a trap. The ground shakes, the temple rises out of the ground, and the entire island moves. The X-Men had come to Krakoa to find a mutant, but that mutant is the island itself!
Chapter 4: Krakoa...the Island That Walks Like a Man
In a flashback, it is revealed that radiation from atomic tests near the island caused a host of mutations on the island’s indigenous life before the island itself eventually mutated into a single group-mind entity. Krakoa needs to feed off the life energies of other mutants and found the X-Men to be an excellent source of sustenance. It allowed Cyclops to escape in order to bring back more mutants, which he did.Krakoa launches an all-out assault on the combined teams. Despite the combined power of old X-Men and new, none of their attacks seem to affect the island. Professor X then intervenes via a telepathic message and tells Cyclops he thinks he knows of its sole weakness.
As Professor X attacks the island with his mind to distract its communal intellect, Storm flies into the sky and shoots electricity down into Lorna Dane, stimulating her magnetic powers. Fearing that the tactic may kill Lorna, Havok pleads with Cyclops to put a stop to it. But Cyclops tells his brother that he cannot risk the life of one woman, even the woman Alex loves, for the safety of the entire world. Suffering from fatigue, Professor X's assault falters and Krakoa regains its strength from the typhoon that Storm has created.
Scott and Alex combine their powers with Lorna's own and she direct it downward. Her magnetic power penetrates to the center of the Earth, causing Krakoa to cry out in terror. As everyone flees to safety, Iceman snatches up an unconscious Lorna, refusing to allow Havok to help her. This angers Havok, but Cyclops tells him to set aside their personal feud until later. As the island begins breaking up, everyone jumps onto Iceman's ice raft. Lorna has disrupted the magnetic energy in the vicinity of the island's location, effectively canceling out gravity. Krakoa is flung out into the vacuum of space. The ocean at its (now former) location churns into a swirling whirlpool.
Iceman covers his raft in an ice-bubble just before it is sucked into the whirlpool. Eventually, it breaks the (once again calm) ocean surface and the team emerges to find the Stratajet afloat nearby. After boarding the ship and flying off, slight disagreements that occurred between the new members are (almost) sorted out. Angel then ponders aloud to the assembled group what they will do with thirteen X-Men.
Appearing in "Call him...Cyclops"
- Vanisher (Cameo)
- Blob (Cameo)
- Tyrannus (Cameo)
- Hulk (Cameo)
- Iron Man (Mentioned)
- Magneto (Mentioned)
Synopsis for "Call him...Cyclops"
A back-up narrative explaining Cyclops' mutant powers. Cyclops is endowed with a powerful optic blast that he cannot control and must use his ruby quartz glasses to prevent them from firing. It explains that his powers derive it's energy from the sun.
It goes on to explain the application of Cyclops' visor, how it is controlled by a nob on the side of the visor or from a secret glove trigger that Cyclops can use when his hands are bound. It explains the force that his powers can strike with and it also explains how Cyclops is a trained fighter. The narrative ends by posing the question of if Cyclops' power is strong enough to face the Hulk.
Appearing in "I, the Iceman"
Synopsis for "I, the Iceman"
- Sure, it can be cold as a pawnbroker's heart! Frozen as a bill collector's smile! Hard as an algebra end-term! And yet, it has its good points, too! Like, for example, I can cream you with a snowball in July!
In this back-up feature, Iceman explains to the reader how his mutant powers work and how he uses them to create ice constructs like his ice slide. He also shows off different things he can create with his powers such as a bombardment of ice chunks, an ice boomerang, ice shields etc. He explains that he is able to do it by freezing the moisture in the air.
Explaining some of the social perks of his ice powers, he also explains how he learned how to turn his body into an ice form. Originally in a snow form, but later through the Professor's training, he was able to cover his body in ice. He explains that he is quite comfortable in cold climates, and can keep himself cool in hot ones.
Bobby finishes his explanation by wondering how he would fare against the Human Torch in battle, or if his powers would work in outer space since there is no moisture in space.
Appearing in "The Female of the Species!"
Synopsis for "The Female of the Species!"
In this backup feature, Marvel Girl explains to the reading audience how her telepathic and telekinetic powers work. Beginning with her telekinetic powers, Jean explains that she can use her mind to lift objects from something as small as an apple to something large like a sofa. She also shows how she can manipulate objects with her telekinetic powers by peeling an apple with a knife and deflecting an enemy weapon. She also explains how her powers can get her out of traps, such as allowing her to control a pair of scissors to cut off a blindfold and ropes that are bound to her hands, or use them to turn the bolt of a locked door from the opposite side or allow her to seemingly walk above a flaming pit without harm. Finally, she demonstrates that she can use her telekinesis to lift herself up and allow her to land safely on the ground.
Next to explaining her telepathic powers, she explains that she can use them to cause pain in someone's mind, downing even the most powerful villain with a mental bolt. She explains that her powers help her out in everyday life which she demonstrates by tripping up a would-be purse snatcher. At the end, when a bunch of male onlookers of the scene pay attention to her beauty, she confesses that being able to make a man turn his head requires no effort at all.
- Uncanny X-Men Annual #4 would eventually reveal there was more to the story of Nightcrawler’s introduction. Prior to the events shown here, Kurt had been sworn to a blood oath by his mentally ill adopted brother Stefan Szardos that should Stefan ever become violent, Kurt would kill him rather than allow him to harm anyone else. When Stefan did go insane, Kurt reluctantly performed a mercy killing on his brother. The mob pursuing him at the start of this story had believed Kurt murdered Stefan in cold blood. (On the other hand, they were quick to assume Kurt was a malicious demon based on his physical appearance.)
- The Canadian government's Department H eventually make good on Major Chasen's threats, first sending their agent Weapon Alpha/Vindicator to apprehend Wolverine in Uncanny X-Men #109, and then the entire Alpha Flight team after him in Uncanny X-Men #s 121 and 122.
- Neither Sunfire's refusal to aid in the rescue mission nor his equally abrupt change of heart have ever been given an explanation.
- Colossus's young sister, unnamed in this story, would later return to the series and become the popular character Magik.
- The original plan for the "All-New X-Men" were to have been significantly different. The series would have continued in the giant-sized format and be published quarterly rather than as a monthly (or bi-monthly as it was initially) standard-length book. Also, the series would have combined the six original members depicted here alongside the seven new members in one team. But when sales figures for this issue indicated that it was a hit, Marvel's editorial staff were prompted to expand the series to a bi-monthly (and later monthly) schedule. A bi-monthly/monthly standard-length series however necessitated jettisoning several characters and so all the original team members (save Cyclops) as well as Sunfire were written out.
- A subplot from the last few issues of the original X-Men series - a love triangle involving Iceman, Lorna Dane and Havok - is referenced in this issue. It's likely that had the original plan for the series gone through (involving all the original members), the storyline might have been developed further. As it was, the subplot was dropped and never mentioned again.
- Angel's last line in this book - "...what are we gonna do with thirteen X-Men?" - was homaged in The Avengers (Vol. 3) # 3 when the Beast asks "What are we gonna do with 33 Avengers?"
- The 2006 limited series X-Men: Deadly Genesis extensively retcons the plot of this issue, most notably the nature of Krakoa itself and the circumstances of Cyclops's escape from it.
- The cover art has been homaged in:
- Peter Iro inked several backgrounds in this story and is not mentioned in the credits.
- This cover has been the inspiration for many other Marvel comic covers.
- The Banshee would have been attending the Opry at the "new" Opryland facility which opened in 1974.
- The first story in this issue is reprinted in trade paperback.
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