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Comic Book: House of M
Most of us are wondering what we're doing here...

No more mutants.

A Marvel Comics Miniseries with several tie-in books following the events of Avengers Disassembled.

Wanda Maximoff, better known as the Scarlet Witch, suffers a reality-warping mental breakdown and is taken to Genosha by her father Magneto. When Wanda shows little sign of recovery, the X-Men and the Avengers meet to discuss what action should be taken next; they decide that Wanda must be killed. The combined teams arrive at Genosha when suddenly the world is swallowed by a bright white light...

The scene cuts to Wolverine as he wakes up in a world that has completely changed: A world where mutants are the dominant species, humans are now a persecuted minority, and the United States is led by the House of Magneto. The now-scattered and mind-altered Avengers and X-Men must try to reunite and find out how to reverse what happened on the day they arrived on Genosha. They later come across Layla Miller, a young girl who is aware that reality has been changed and who helps expose the truth about their "current" reality.

Turns out Wanda's twin brother Pietro (Quicksilver) convinced her to rewrite reality into one where all the heroes got to have their greatest desires — including Magneto's and Professor Xavier's — which meant that Magneto's family ruled the mutants and the mutants ruled the world, and that Professor Xavier had died a meaningful death and mutants and humans live side-by-side (sort of). The Avengers and the X-Men confront Wanda after regaining their memories of the reality that existed before Wanda's Cosmic Ret Con. Wanda suffers another nervous breakdown and eventually restores the original reality, but depowers 99.99% of the world's mutants as well. Afterwards, she disappears without a trace and the reader is given a clue that the depowering might not be as permanent as it seems.

The House of M storyline is continued in X-Men: Decimation.

The next Marvel Comics Crisis Crossover is Civil War, followed by World War Hulk.

Tropes found in the comic:

  • Alternate Continuity: The entire "House Of M" reality is a short-lived one.
  • Back from the Dead: Hawkeye. TWICE!
  • Based on a Great Big Lie: Spider-Man is adored by the public, and even known to be Peter Parker. This, however, is because he's told the world at large that he's a mutant, instead of the truth regarding the radioactive spider bite.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: The Aesop of some of the tie-in miniseries. For instance, Doctor Doom managed to get almost everything he claimed to want: his mother alive, his face unscarred, Richards dead — and he manages to lose it all, mostly at his own hands, by the end of the Fantastic Four: House of M miniseries.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Wanda to Magneto.
  • Continuity Porn: When Layla unlocks Peter's memories, we get a two-page spread of the notable villains and events of Spidey's life.
  • Cosmic Retcon
  • Crisis Crossover
  • "End of the World" Special: Wanda. Twice.
  • Fleeting Demographic Rule: The Avengers went through a much more drastic reality warp caused by Morgan Le Fay only a few years earlier, and they reacted to that one almost as if it were routine, because they've been through so many similar incidents before. This time around, everyone acts as if they've never seen anything remotely like this, and they're all on the verge of stark panic.
  • Foreshadowing: In the House of M reality, Hulk is the leader of Australia and does a surprisingly good job at it. Then he goes and rules a desert world in World War Hulk.
  • A Glitch in the Matrix: Wolverine realized that things were not right right away.
  • Godwin's Law Of Reality Warping
  • Hero of Another Story: Captain America. In this reality, he was never frozen in ice and got to continue his life post-war. He only cameos in the main mini-series as an old man (prompting the other heroes to just leave him be), but a tie-in issue of his own comic summarizes the different things he experienced during the intervening decades.
    • Per her own desires, Ms. Marvel had managed to achieve widespread fame and acceptance as a hero in the House of M reality, even though she was explicitly a non-mutant.
  • Heroic BSOD: What kicks off the event (arguably, the entire event takes place within Wanda's blue screen).
  • Hulk Speak: Lampshaded.
    Hulk: Hulk... hates... personal pronouns.
  • Improvised Weapon: Ms. Marvel, the greatest hero of the world (at least in this reality) fights against Sir Warren Traveler, an evil sorcerer. Her powers are useless against magic, so how can she defeat him? Well, how about throwing a random alley cat to his face?
  • Indulgent Fantasy Segue: A tragic one at the beginning when Wanda gives birth to her twin sons while surrounded by her friends and family... only to be forcefully pulled out of her fantasy by Professor X
  • La Résistance: The Human Resistance Movement, led by Luke Cage
  • Lotus-Eater Machine: Wanda's altered reality is this for the entire Marvel Universe. All the heroes who could oppose her are given new lives doing what makes them happy, partly because it's what Wanda wants, partly to keep them from rebelling and trying to change reality back.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: Wanda used her power to alter reality and give everyone their deepest desires. Even the guy whose deepest desire is that his Laser-Guided Amnesia be undone, so he'll remember his entire life again... Even the fact that he's living in an altered reality which she created. Oops.
  • Not Quite Human: The mutants, obviously.
  • Oracular Urchin: Layla Miller. Also a MacGuffin Girl.
  • Reality Warper: The Scarlet Witch
  • Ret Gone: In-story example with Charles Xavier and the Fantastic Four
    • In the latter's case, actually, only Reed and Sue die. Ben becomes an irrational version of the Thing (which Dr. Doom refers to as "It") and Johnny goes on to become an underground mecha fighter, like Tony Stark and his dad.
  • Ripple-Effect-Proof Memory: Ironically, Wanda's Lotus-Eater Machine effect gives Wolverine this as a side-effect of his wish to remember everything.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Initially averted. After finding out that the reality shift has (resurrected Gwen Stacy and Uncle Ben), Spider-Man tells Wolverine he's going to kill the Scarlet Witch. Wolverine says that he won't give Spidey the chance.
    • Played straight when Magneto finds out that Quicksilver had the Scarlet Witch alter reality.
  • Shipper on Deck: Wanda herself, oddly. The new world she creates has several characters romantically involved (e.g. Wolverine and Mystique) who were never shown 'together' before.
  • Status Quo Is God: Played straight & averted.
    • "No More Mutants" - Averted, in that a large number of mutants are depowered & the X-Men underwent a massive shift in their position in the Marvel universe because of this. Played straight, with most of the 98% of mutants who lost their powers being unknown to the reader, and the majority of the named characters being C-List characters or lower with the big name mutants retaining their powers - Really, the only major mutant characters who lose their powers are Magneto & his children, and even then, it's only temporary.
    • Character Development - Averted, Wolverine remembering everything he'd previously forgotten. Played straight, in that despite the Trauma Conga Line he goes through during the story, there are no lasting effects for Peter Parker & his memories of the "House of M" timeline are only mentioned once in the follow-up mini Son of M, and has no bearing on any of the on-going Spider-Man series.
  • Superior Species Pietro convinces Wanda to rewrite reality using this as one of the excuses. She's thoroughly disillusioned about it by the end, though.
  • Trauma Conga Line: Spider-Man goes through one, and he's not even the focus of the story.
  • Villain World: The premise, though it's presented as a (semi-)benevolent dictatorship. Magneto is now the ultimate authority, with smaller territories being delegated to less-scrupulous villains like Apocalypse and Doctor Doom). Mutants have it much better than nonmutants, who are distinctly second-class citizens.
  • Wham Line:
    Wanda: No more mutants.
  • Wistful Amnesia: Former superheroes reverted to ordinary humans have a lingering sensation of loss. It doesn't help that mutants rule the world, leaving the powerless to languish in a state of depression called "Dead End Syndrome."
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Oh, Wanda...

Age of ApocalypseFranchise/X-MenThe Children's Crusade
Avengers DisassembledFranchise/The AvengersCivil War
Heroic AgeMarvel Comics SeriesHoward the Duck
Secret SixTurnOfTheMillennium/Comic BooksWildsiderz

alternative title(s): House Of M
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