Review: The Uncanny X-Men #142

The Uncanny X-Men #142 cover
Cover by Terry Austin

The Uncanny X-Men #142
Published and © by Marvel, February 1981

Title: “Mind Out of Time!”
Synopsis: The X-Men battle the new Brotherhood of Evil Mutants in an effort to save Senator Kelly – and the future!

Writers (plot): Chris Claremont and John Byrne
Writer (script): Claremont
Penciler/co-plotter: Byrne
Inker: Terry Austin

Review: The “Days of Future Past” two-parter (see review of X-Men #141) is the last great story from the legendary Chris Claremont/John Byrne/Terry Austin team. More importantly, in retrospect, is how it teases and sets the template for so many things to come during Claremont’s 17-year run. From character growth and relationships to hopefulness against a backdrop of dystopian dread, this two-issue story really sets the tone. This particular issue is expertly crafted, juggling between two timelines with excellent character work and strong fight choreography. And the art is among the nicest to ever grace this series’ pages. Bravo!

Grade: A+

Second opinion: “Downright seminal in its impact on the X-Men series.” – Jason Powell, “The Best There Is at What He Does: Examining Chris Claremont’s X-Men,” 2016 … “Unfortunately, most of the action takes place in dull 1981 as heroes and villains mix it up with readers actually seen very little of the more interesting future.” – Pierre Comtois, “Marvel Comics in the 1980s: An Issue By Issue Field Guide to a Pop Culture Phenomenon,” 2014 … “(This story) played into the essence of the X-Men: ‘Feared and hated by the world they are sworn to protect,’ and still ranks as one of the greatest X-Men stories ever told.” – Melanie Scott and Stephen “Win” Wiacek, “Marvel Greatest Comics: 100 Comics That Built a Universe” … Recommended by The Slings & Arrows Comic Guide (second edition), 2003.

Cool factor: This two-parter set up so many stories.
Not-so-cool factor: Only one more issue of Byrne and Austin. 🙁

Notable: The “Uncanny”adjective is officially added to series’ title as of this issue. … According to Terry Austin, John Byrne’s original cover for this issue was delayed in the mail, causing the inker to fill in as cover penciler.
Collector’s note: According to MyComicShop.com, there is a Mark Jewelers variant of this issue.

Character quotable: “Mutants, like people, are both good and bad. You would do well to remember that, Senator. Before you seek to condemn us all.” – Storm, leader of the uncanny X-Men

Editor’s note: This review was written Dec. 2, 2022.

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