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Comic Book / X-Force (2019)

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"There is us, and there is them."
— The Man with the Peacock Tattoo, X-Force #1

X-Force is a 2019 comic book series, and the sixth volume of the title focused on the titular team. It is part of the Dawn of X relaunch, written by Benjamin Percy (Wolverine: The Long Night) and drawn by Joshua Cassara (The Falcon).

After the foundation of the nation of Krakoa, it's quickly deemed necessary that the X-Men are going to need their own intelligence agency to keep up with any and all threats to their people. Enter X-Force, the group that will ensure that the mutant nation will continue to exist, free from foreign influence... And by any means necessary. Featuring Jean Grey, Wolverine, Domino, Black Tom, Beast, Colossus, Sage, and Quentin Quire.

The first issue was released November 6, 2019.


X-Force provides the following tropes:

  • Animal Motif: A peacock.
  • Anti-Hero Team: As usual for the X-Force, although this iteration of the team is different in that a number of traditionally-heroic X-Men (such as Marvel Girl, Beast, and Colossus) are on the team as well.
  • Artificial Human: Issue two has the team of invading assassins dissected and it's discovered they're entirely constructed. According to Sage they're not superhumans yet but they have built in mechanisms such as blades made of bone in their forearms, explosive putty filling their teeth, and garroting wire instead of cartilage in their ears. Wolverine and Quentin discover they're being constructed in factory facilities, with pieces grown and grafted together.
  • Badass Boast:
    • Quentin is no stranger to boasting.
    Quentin Quire: I'm back! Which means this walking petri dish… is dead meat! [fires psychic bazooka into twenty-foot skinless giant]
    • Domino has one for the guy who stole her luck.
      Domino: I'm your snake eyes. I'm the bad luck you wish you could shake off.
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  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Double Subverted. Domino still looks pretty though the right half of her body is covered in scar tissue.
  • Body Horror: The artificial humans grown in XENO labs have extensive features built in like garroting wire spooled in their ears and bone daggers sheathed in the forearms. We get a full view of them actually using this in Issue #7 when Domino's evil clone rips off her own ear and the dagger out of her arm.
  • The Bus Came Back: After not being seen in the present for several years, Mikhail Rasputin, older brother of Colossus and Magik, reappears at the end of issue #11.
  • CIA Evil, FBI Good: Discussed at a Quiet Council meeting. Initially downplayed by equating such agencies with the strong and brave Hercules and the cold and calculated Athena. X-force would be their Delta Force.
  • Cloning Blues: Inverted with Domino, who discusses whether the person who wished to keep her painful memories if resurrected was really her.
  • Conlang: Krakoan is perhaps used the most in this installment of Dawn of X. Though there seems to be a separate language, in many cases, it seems to be used primarily as code, as anything written in the Krakoan alphabet is implied to be gibberish to non-mutants.
    Sage's screen: (in Krakoan script) Classified do not share with humans
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Logan mentions Quentin having ten million thoughts a second, a fact which probably hasn't been mentioned since Grant Morrison's New Xmen.
    • Laura is missing from the Wolverine family gathering in issue #9, as she was sent to the Vault in X-men #5 and hasn't returned.
  • Crossover: The first issue contains the first crossover of the Dawn of X books, as Kitty Pryde's team of Marauders arrives with mutant refugees from Russia.
  • Darker and Edgier: Than probably all of the other Dawn of X books. The first issue has a team of assassins killing a number of mutants on Krakoa including Professor X.
  • Dying as Yourself: Inverted, as Domino will only come back if she gets to be herself, with unedited memories. Except... she comes back without them, assuming that must have been what she wanted when she died. Something's not right here...
  • Enemies Equals Greatness: A reversed example, but still prominent. When X-Force has to deal with a team of mercenaries, the one that they capture points out the fact that mutants are now a top-tier nation or as he puts it, the 1%. This means that they will end up attracting enemies and opposition regardless of anti-mutant bigotry.
  • Evil Twin: Issue #7 has heavy foreshadowing leading up to a reveal of a clone of Domino, with inverted colors, who is assassinating high profile human advocates for mutant rights.
  • Exact Words: When Quire begs him not to harm his Italian wool-and-silk jacket to stop him complaining about the tropical heat, Wolverine obliges, and merely cuts Quire's shirt and (tailored) trousers to relieve him of said heat.
  • Four-Leaf Clover: Domino notes at one point that naturally she finds them all the time, and infact they have a greater chance of occurring in her presence. This leads to a Eureka Moment to find the mobile lab creating her clones by searching for a train whose tracks have four leaf clovers growing alongside it.
  • Gratuitous Spanish: Residents of Terra Verde pepper their dialogue with Spanish. It is uncertain if it's meant to imply that they speak English to each other when their English is not in brackets.
  • Human Resources: XENO used the samples they flayed off of Domino to enhance the artificial assassins they grow in their flesh factories. At first they used skin grafts to bypass Krakoan security, then they advance to a color inverted clone.
  • Human Sacrifice: Issue 9 details the cultural history of Terra Verde. They have many legends of ritualistic human sacrifice in part or in whole to what is described as a rather horrifying looking deity in exchange for fertility of the Earth. Hank compares this directly to Krakoa's need to consume the equivalent of at least two mutants a year to maintain its health by taking a little from each inhabitant (something mitigated by the sheer abundance of mutants on the island).
  • Ironic Echo: A journalist unwittingly asks Storm's question to the newly resurrected of Xavier.
  • Irony: Colossus tells Domino he's seen enough blood, right before they break into a railroad car filled with blood.
  • It's Raining Men: The first issue has four assassins (called "the Reavers" in the script) parachuting into Krakoa from a hijacked plane.
  • Kick the Dog: Poor Rufus. Though Domino re-rescued him after capturing his original rescuer, he is implied to have been eaten by a seamonster.
  • Lensman Arms Race: The subtext of the series is fringe human groups directly warring with Krakoa in technological advancement. The first five issues introduced a clandestine group engineering living weapons to assassinate Xavier and later stealing the technologies Krakoa is developing. Issue six has terrorist action in a small country to prevent a treaty signing because they were on the verge of developing organic technology for themselves and don't want the economic opportunity lost to Krakoa.
  • Literal-Minded: Apocalypse has a tendency to answer sarcasms like they were real requests for information.
  • Living Forever Is Awesome: Jean feels that not having to worry about her own continued survival frees her to concentrate on others.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • The country that is covered in rainforest and focuses its scientific efforts on programming plants is named Terra Verde, "green earth".
    • Cocom was the name of a Maya dynasty.
  • Me's a Crowd:
    • In the moving genetics lab, Domino runs into a small army of clones of herself.
    • Discussed by Quentin, who thinks Krakoa would be a better place if more resurrectees had his brain plugged into them.
  • Mind Rape: Domino came back without her traumatic memories, nor remembering her dying request to Peter.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: The Beast tried to secure Krakoa's future by hacking Terra Verde's telefloronics to kill their prince, but he also ended up making them dominant and in control of people's bodies, which at the least nearly resulted in a genocide of the whole country.
  • Not So Different: As far as Wolverine is concerned, humans and mutants aren't "better" or "worse" than each other, they're both equally capable of the very best and the very worst. He believes Xavier knows this which is why he believes in coexistence.
  • Obfuscating Disability: Downplayed with Quentin's reveal that he does not in fact need glasses, he just thinks he looks good in them.
  • Oh, No... Not Again!: This is Quentin's reaction after being impaled with the Cerebro sword by one of the Russian bio-soldiers.
  • Organic Technology: Forge is able to run wild with Krakoa's biological functions and create gear and weaponry from it, which he shows to the nascent field team in issue 4. The cover of issue five displays some of the arsenal he developed.
    • Issue six shows a small country developing its own based on botany called Telefloronics. It goes out of their control and possesses the scientists developing it, turning them into plant monsters.
  • Pet the Dog: The merc they capture claims to have a rescue dog waiting for him to come home.
  • Portal Cut: Issue #4 ends with thieves blowing up a Krakoan gate just as Logan and Quentin are using it. This beheads Quentin and bisects Logan at the waist.
  • Poor Communication Kills: Gradually becoming a recurring problem with Beast, who keeps making decisions unilaterally without consulting anyone else, leaving them to confront him when they find out after it blows up in their faces.
  • Power Incontinence: Black Tom Cassidy uses his powers to meld with Krakoa's environment for surveillance but finds himself transported to different places in his sleep. He once woke up in the bay.
  • Prestige Peril: The series opens with a successful assassination attempt on Xavier in retaliation for establishing the mutant nation. Magneto reforms the shattered remains of the Cerebro helmet into a sword that he gives to Xavier upon resurrection, who keeps it in understanding of having his own Sword of Damocles now.
    • As the mercenary explains to them in issue #5, Krakoa isn't being targeted now just because they're mutants but because they also have something valuable worth stealing.
  • Pun-Based Title: Issue seven is titled "Domino is falling".
  • Realpolitik: What the series is functionally about. You can't just have a new global superpower appear overnight without having to get your hands dirty to ensure that it can continue existing as a state.
    • Also subverted, as mutants now belong to the "1%" and as the mercenaries puts it, would make them targeted by thieves. Double subverted as it turns out Xeno was behind that, too.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: After being dissected and treated like a piece of meat (again), Domino is pissed after being rescued and jumps at the first mission that comes up. She slaughters the mercenaries in retribution for her treatment, and has to be talked down by Beast from finishing them all off because they still need someone alive to interrogate for information.
  • Slasher Smile: Wolverine. Standing on his fallen enemy. His legs cut off above the hip.
  • Third-Person Person: Black Tom affects this.
  • Self-Sacrifice Scheme: Xavier had one.
  • Shout-Out: Beast quotes Napoleon.
  • Spin the Bottle: A drinking game even Gabrielle can participate in. Whoever it stops on has to stab him/herself in the head.
  • They Killed Kenny Again: Taking full advantage of the revival capabilities of the mutants in Krakoa, they have all been killed at least once during the run. Quentin Quire has been killed the most, and it really annoys him.
  • War Refugees: The first issue has Krakoa taking on a bunch of mutant refugees from Russia, as seen in Marauders. A lot of them are suffering, especially because it appears Russia was using chemical weapons on them.
  • Wham Episode: Prior to release, the first issue was said to have an event that will reverberate across the other Dawn of X titles. This turned out to be the assassination of Professor X, and the destruction of Cerebro.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: At the conclusion of the Terra Verde arc Jean calls out Hank on keeping secrets within X-Force, as they nearly ruined a whole country and made a threat to Krakoa.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: Black Tom gets a massive boost to his powers when he discovers his ability to symbiotically manipulate Krakoa. He can monitor and manipulate every part of it down to grains of pollen and is thus employed as Krakoa's chief of security. However that amount of awareness and information streaming through his brain has a detrimental effect on his sanity, making him paranoid of his connection to the island under the belief his identity is being consumed by it.
  • You Did the Right Thing: Jean finds it condescending when Beast tells her this.


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