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House of M #1: Review

Jun 2005
Brian Michael Bendis, Olivier Coipel

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

Rating:
4.5 stars

House of M #1 Review by (July 2, 2013)
As far as our Libraries are concerned:- Iron Man won't be in the following issues until #5. Instead he will star in his own series IM:HoM. Captain America will also be absent until #5, except for a small bit next issue showing him as an old man who survived WWII. She-Hulk will also drop out until #5. Thor is of course currently 'dead'. Hulk will contribute #83-86 of his own series. Luckily Cap, Hulk and Iron Man also show up in flashbacks in #3. So #4 is the only one that wouldn't be documented somewhere in this collection of websites. But since I'm the one writing these synopses and comments, I'm including all issues in the Iron Man Library. I'll also be briefly describing the tie-ins in my comments, spread through the issues in what I judge to be relevant places rather than when they came out. The only tie-ins I'll mention this time is an official prelude in Excalibur (2004) #13-14. Here Prof X has been trying in vain to cure Scarlet Witch in Genosha. He calls in Dr Strange to help. But Strange mainly psychoanalyses Xavier. And I don't actually think this really prefigures the current series.

Genosha is the island mutant haven that was destroyed by Cassandra Nova's Sentinels in (New) X-Men #115. Prof X quit the X-Men in Uncanny XM #443, staying in Genosha with Magneto in the Excalibur (2004) series, where Magneto took his daughter after Disassembled. Magneto was ruler of Genosha and presumed dead when it was destroyed. A mutant called Xorn pretended to be him in the Planet X arc in (N)XM#146-150. But the real Magneto turned up alive in Genosha, as above. Quicksilver was with Magneto when he ruled Genosha, until he became concerned about his father's ideas, and lead the Avengers against him in the Magento: Dark Seduction mini-series. Since then he has associated with the Avengers and X-Men, but wasn't present during Disassembled. Peter Parker has woken up next to his 1st love Gwen Stacy. This is the 1st indication that Wanda has created a world that grants certain people's hearts' desires. This will be a world in which mutants (homo superior) rule (and there are a lot more of them), and homo sapiens is on the way out. Specifically, Magneto and his family rule the world.

This is the start of the 1st of the Events that will dominate the Marvel Universe for years to come. I don't count Avengers Disassembled because its various story arcs were mostly not connected, even in theme. Scarlet Witch magically created children for herself and Vision in their 2nd limited series. But she lost them in Avengers West Coast #52 when they turned out to be fragments of Mephisto. Agatha Harkness made her forget them, but when she remembered about them later Wanda went mad, resulting in Avengers Disassembled and some dead Avengers. (Avengers: Children's Crusade #7 will provide more reason for her 'madness'.) Sentry has been a member of New Avengers since their #10. But his Watchtower is not shown above Avengers Tower here, where it appeared in that issue. This may be an editorial mistake. Or possibly Sentry was asked to hide it, as part of the attempt to keep Avengers HQ a secret as mentioned here. The old Avengers invited to the meeting are the survivors of Avengers Disassembled. Noticeably the only New Avenger missing is Spider-Woman. This could be because Brian Bendis knows that SW is a Skrull imposter. However Yellowjacket is also a Skrull here, and New Avengers #45 will reveal that both he and SW in the following issues of the House of M reality are still the Skrull versions. Furthermore it will indicate that the Skrulls know what has happened, unlike most humans.



 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

House of M #1 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
It's 6 months after Avengers Disassembled, and in the ruins of Genosha Charles Xavier is trying to stop Wanda Maximoff from repeatedly changing reality to get her dead children back. But each time he brings her back to reality she has to face the fact that she caused Ant-Man, Hawkeye and her ex-husband Vision to be killed.

Prof X tells Wanda's father Magneto that she's getting worse, and he has to keep mentally sending her to sleep. Erik blames himself for putting his war against anti-mutant humanity before his duty to his children.

Skip to Avengers Tower, where ex-Avengers Falcon, Wonder Man and Carol Danvers have been invited to a meeting. Carol is thinking of ditching her Warbird identity and reverting to Ms Marvel, though she wears the Warbird outfit this time.

Most of the current New Avengers (Captain America, Iron Man, Luke Cage, Spider-Man and Sentry) are already there, along with other old Avengers She-Hulk, Wasp and Yellowjacket (already replaced by a Skrull). Prof X has called this meeting to discuss what to do about Scarlet Witch, and Dr Strange is here for his expertise. Now they are joined by team-member Wolverine and the rest of the (Astonishing) X-Men (Beast, Colossus, Cyclops, Emma Frost and Shadowcat).

Meanwhile Wanda's brother Quicksilver has heard about the meeting and has come to Genosha. He believes the Avengers and X-Men will decide Scarlet Witch must die to protect reality. But father Magneto can't offer him any alternative.

The meeting has some strongly polarised views. Hard-headed Emma Frost and Wolverine say she must die. Cap says there's always another way. Spider-Man, Shadowcat and Cyclops also object on principle. Wonder Man won't hear of it because he loved her, Wasp and Carol because she was their friend.

But Emma gets Xavier and Strange to admit they can't find a way to neutralise Wanda's power. She fears that if the public find out that the Witch killed fellow Avengers then it will destroy human/mutant relations.

They all agree to go see the problem at first-hand. But when they get to Genosha Wanda isn't in her bed. Emma psychically locates 'them', but Dr Strange can't sense any of Wanda's magic. As they track her down there's a sudden white light ..........

Peter Parker wakes up in bed, hearing his baby crying. His blonde wife tells him it's his turn to deal with it.


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> House of M: Book info and issue index

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Olivier Coipel
Tim Townsend
Frank D'Armata
Esad Ribic (Cover Penciler)
Esad Ribic (Cover Inker)
Letterer: Chris Eliopoulos.
Editor: Tom Brevoort.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Beast
Beast

(Hank McCoy)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)
Falcon
Falcon

(Sam Wilson)
Hawkeye
Hawkeye

(Clint Barton)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Luke Cage
Luke Cage

(Power Man)
Ms. Marvel
Ms. Marvel

(Carol Danvers)
Professor X
Professor X

(Charles Xavier)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)
She-Hulk
She-Hulk

(Jennifer Walters)
Spider-Man
Spider-Man

(Peter Parker)
Wasp
Wasp

(Janet Van Dyne)
Wolverine
Wolverine

(James Howlett)

Plus: Colossus (Piotr Rasputin), Emma Frost, Hank Pym (Skrull), Jarvis, Shadow-Cat, Warbird.