Review: The Uncanny X-Men #170

The Uncanny X-Men #170 cover
Cover by Paul Smith

The Uncanny X-Men #170
Published and © by Marvel, June 1983

Title: “Dancin’ in the Dark”
Synopsis: In an effort to save Angel and Kitty, Storm fights to the death to become the leader of the Morlocks.

Writer: Chris Claremont
Penciler: Paul Smith
Inker: Bob Wiacek

Review: Part two of the Morlocks’ introduction (see review of part one) begins fleshing out this underground mutant society. Callisto and her subterranean flock of outcasts adds a third way to a spectrum long defined at its poles by Professor X’s Utopian dream and Magneto’s vision of mutant domination; this expansion would open the door for a variety of important stories in the years to come. At the character level, the bigger development here is the shocking, cold-blooded turn by Storm; this, too, would shape the direction of many future stories. In hindsight, this proved to be an important issue.

Grade: A

Second opinion: “If one moves back up from the subtext to explore the actual text, this two-parter is a tremendous action story.” – Jason Powell, “The Best There Is at What He Does: Examining Chris Claremont’s X-Men,” 2016 … “More compelling are subplots involving Madelyne Pryor and the haunting of Mystique.” – John Jackson Miller, The Comics Buyer’s Guide to the X-Men (Comics Buyer’s Guide Presents), 2003

Cool factor: Damn, Storm! That was cold.
Not-so-cool factor: Yeah, Caliban. Your thing for Kitty? Still uncool.

Collector’s note: According to the Grand Comics Database, there is a 75¢ Canadian variant of this issue. … According to MyComicShop.com, there is also a Mark Jewelers variant.

Character quotable: “Callisto … I lead the X-Men. The challenge, the duel – your life – are mine!” – Storm, badass

Editor’s note: This review was written April 25, 2024.

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