Published and © by Marvel, October 1977
Title: “Where No X-Man Has Gone Before!”
Synopsis: Far from Earth, the X-Men face off against the mighty (familiar) Imperial Guard – and require some help from the Starjammers!
Writer: Chris Claremont
Artist: Dave Cockrum
Review: After months of build up – and an unfortunate fill-in story last issue (see review) – the new X-Men’s first great creative team finally delivers the payoff. Dave Cockrum’s art for this issue, in what would would prove to be his initial swan song of the title, is spectacular; the opening splash page is iconic and the follow-up double truck isn’t far behind. Chris Claremont’s story is chockablock with action and new characters. In fact, there’s so much going on there is hardly time to take in all of the fast-moving developments. A clear high point of Claremont and Cockrum’s initial run.
Second opinion: “An issue that explodes their Burroughs-esque adventure into an all-out sci-fi extravaganza.” – Jason Powell, “The Best There Is at What He Does: Examining Chris Claremont’s X-Men,” 2016 … “Cockrum gets to go out with a bang.” – Jim Johnson, The Comics Buyer’s Guide to the X-Men (Comics Buyer’s Guide Presents), 2003 … “One of the nicest productions of the year so far.” – Martin Lock, Comics Unlimited #47, September 1977
Cool factor: The Imperial Guard! The Starjammers! So many great new characters!
Not-so-cool factor: Goodbye for now, Dave Cockrum. (Mitigating cool factor: Get ready to say “hello” to John Byrne next issue.)
Notable: First appearance of the Imperial Guard. … First full appearance of the Starjammers. … The Starjammers are an homage of the Legion of Super-Heroes, Dave Cockrum’s previous superteam assignment at Marvel rival DC.
Collector’s note: According to the Grand Comics Database, there is a 35¢ variant of this issue.… According to MyComicShop.com, there is also a Mark Jewelers variant.
Character quotable: “Sharra and K’ythri – the STARJAMMERS!!” – Lilandra, apparently impressed
Editor’s note: This review was written June 23, 2021.