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House of M #8: Review

Sep 2005
Brian Michael Bendis, Olivier Coipel

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

4.5 stars

House of M #8 Review by (August 5, 2013)
The tie-ins this time all concern the aftermath of HoM. Giant Size Ms. Marvel #1 sees Carol Danvers remembering the last (and only real) days in HoM. Captain Marvel fought her HoM nemesis Traveller. Then Layla Miller enlightened her. Carol now decides to change from Warbird back to Ms Marvel, and try to become the popular successful heroine that she was in HoM. (Traveller will show up in the main reality in Ms Marvel #4-5.) In Incredible Hulk #87 Bruce Banner wakes up in Australia in bed with Monica Rappaccini, not knowing how he got there. It seems some people found themselves where HoM left them. But most people didn't, and I think this is the only comic that references this. In Mutopia X #5 we see the mixed results of mutant depowering. The District X/Mutopia X character Mr M/Absolom goes on to be a mutant leader in the X-Men: The 198 limited series. Decimation: House of M: The Day After 1-shot also covers the mutant depowering, but also sets up some specific plotlines for the succeeding X-title issues. (Note that Cyclops and some others remember HoM, but Nightcrawler doesn't seem to. And Polaris doesn't seem to know she's depowered yet.) We are introduced to Sentinel Squad O*N*E which will feature in several series, and have an origin in their own LS. The new Sapien League will be villains in X-Men. Some of the depowered mutants will briefly form Generation M. And Multiple Man will reform X-Factor, including Layla Miller.

William Stryker was a religious fundamentalist who led his Purifiers group against mutants in the God Loves, Man Kills graphic novel. He returned in a story arc in X-Treme X-Men. And now he and his Purifiers will be back in full force. They will feature in New X-Men. But the mutant energy that Hank Pym is worried about will resurface in New Avengers, as the Collective in an arc starting in #16. The red glow at the end of this issue heralds the awakening of Vulcan in the mini-series X-Men: Deadly Genesis, which will also reveal Prof X is alive but depowered. As is strongly suggested here, Hawkeye is now alive again in the main Marvel reality. But he won't actually make a live appearance until NAv#26, where he will be the 1st to find Scarlet Witch (except this version may be a Doombot). The 1st bona fide sighting of Scarlet Witch won't be until the Avengers: Children's Crusade limited series. Magneto is here, powerless. X-Men #177 will show Polaris has lost her powers too. Quicksilver tries to regain *his* power in the Son of M mini-series. Wolverine's regained memories will lead to the Wolverine: Origins series. Lots of entities will claim to have been released or reborn due to Scarlet Witch's actions, such as Onslaught in the appropriately-named Onslaught Reborn limited series.

If Dr Strange's theory is right, then some others like Daredevil, Mystique and Toad should remember. And maybe Dr Doom, Storm and Sub-Mariner, if the Frost/Strange protection extended to the opposition. I don't recall if any of them have claimed to do so. An alternate theory might be that all those who were 'enlightened' by Layla Miller remember, which would add members of Luke Cage's gang. Wolverine appears to get his missing memories back here. But in #4 he said he got them all when he woke up in the HoM reality in #2. Carol Danvers has switched from her Warbird costume in #1 to Ms Marvel, as she was in the HoM reality and as she will decide to be in her series which shortly follows this. Tag and Wind Dancer (Sofia) are identified as 2 of the mutant students who have lost their powers. I believe Wallflower is also recognisable, who is actually still powered.

Peter Parker, Mary Jane and Aunt May moved into Avengers Tower in Amazing Spider-Man #519, which the Official Index places between Young Avengers #12 and House of M (considering only issues I'm documenting). Dr Strange's theory that those who were at Magneto's palace in Genosha remember the HoM reality doesn't *completely* make sense. It explains why all the Astonishing X-Men bar Colossus remember. Similarly for the Avengers. Captain America doesn't remember because Steve Rogers was too old for them to recruit in that reality. Falcon and Sentry were also never 'awoken'. But I don't know why Iron Man has forgotten. Comic Book Database agrees with me that he's in the final group (sans armour). Late arrival Wonder Man doesn't get to say anything here, but he shouldn't remember either. One problem is Spider-Woman who seems to be among the forgetful here. She shouldn't be. And when we learn she is a Skrull imposter, we will be told that she, as well as *all* Skrulls on Earth, *does* remember. Maybe, because she knew that all Skrulls remembered, she was pretending *not* to remember in case she shouldn't as Spider-Woman. The Jarvis here is also a Skrull.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

House of M #8 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
The world wakes up in the morning after Scarlet Witch changed reality again, returning us from the House of M timeline to a modified original. Young Layla Miller wakes to face school again. Peter Parker wakes up in Avengers Tower next to his wife Mary Jane, but can remember being married in the other reality to his 1st love Gwen Stacy.

Spider-Man joins the gradually assembling Avengers. Some also remember what happened, but some don't. Falcon, Luke Cage, Ms Marvel and She-Hulk remember. Captain America, Iron Man and Sentry don't, and Spider-Woman doesn't seem to. Spidey is angry, and only Luke Cage seems to realise what he's going through. (In the HoM reality Luke wasn't with Jessica Jones, and so they didn't have a baby.)

At the X-Men school we start to see the result of Wanda's words "No more mutants". Shadowcat and Emma Frost find many of their students in a panic as they discover their mutant powers have gone.

When Beast, Colossus, Cyclops and Nightcrawler join them it seems like the X-Men proper are still mutants. And they remember the HoM reality, except Colossus.

But Nightcrawler is still worried in case Wolverine has lost his mutant healing ability, because his adamantium skeleton would kill him. He searches the grounds and finds Logan, collapsed but alive. Wolvie is OK, but staggered by the shock of being able to remember his whole life, missing memories and all.

Beast and Cyclops follow Emma into the Cerebra chamber, where she uses the machine to detect that most of the mutants in the world have been depowered. But she can't find Scarlet Witch who caused all this. And she can't find Prof X either.

Kitty has established that the students don't remember HoM, nor staff like Danielle Moonstar who weren't involved. And Bobby Drake adds confusion to the mix by revealing that he's lost his Iceman power too. Emma declares they've got to find Charles Xavier. He'll be able to figure out exactly what's happening, and what they can do about it.

Meanwhile Dr Strange has arrived at Avengers Tower in a shattered state. Wonder Man has joined them too, as they hear news reports about the depowered mutants, and speculation about who or what caused it. William Stryker says it's God's punishment.

Strange theorises that only those who were there at the finale on Genosha last issue can remember what happened, their minds protected by himself and Emma Frost. He too can't locate Wanda Maximoff. And he can't remove Spider-Man's memory, no matter how much the agonised Peter wants him to.

Jarvis alerts them to a screen that indicates someone's at the ruins of Avengers Mansion. When they go to investigate, they find Hawkeye's costume pinned to a wall with arrows, along with a newspaper cutting about his death in Avengers Disassembled.

Meanwhile the Astonishing X-Men team have gone to ruined Genosha to see if they can find any clues there. What they do find is a powerless Magneto, who doesn't know where Wanda, Pietro or Xavier are. The rest of the team stop Logan from killing him.

In an epilogue we see a woman who looks like Wanda in a village that seems to be where she grew up in Transia, beneath Mount Wundagore. Overlaid with an interview with Henry Pym, who speculates on what effect the mutant power loss might have on the world. In particular he wonders where all the mutant energy went. And we see a red glow growing somewhere on the globe.

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


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)

(Sam Wilson)

(Clint Barton)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Luke Cage
Luke Cage

(Power Man)
Ms. Marvel
Ms. Marvel

(Carol Danvers)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)

(Jennifer Walters)

(Peter Parker)


(James Howlett)

Plus: Colossus (Piotr Rasputin), Dani Moonstar, Emma Frost, Jarvis (Skrull), Layla Miller, Mary Jane Watson, Tag, Wallflower, William Stryker, Wind Dancer.