Comics
Published October 23, 2019

How 'Marauders' #1 Charts a New Course for Kate Pryde

Spoiler alert! Get a full breakdown of all the seafaring excitement in today's new issue!

HOUSE OF X and POWERS OF X paved the way for a new era of X-Men stories, but MARAUDERS #1 begins to show us how the Dawn of X will handle mutantkind's new status quo.

Marauders

Writer Gerry Duggan and artist Matteo Lolli have a distinct storytelling flavor of their own, but MARAUDERS #1 also places ancillary matter throughout the issue that offers additional insight about the series. For example, an early page reveals that the Office of Naval Intelligence found the bottle with a message that Kitty Pryde left while sailing to Krakoa with her pet dragon, Lockheed. According to a dispatch sent to “Krakoan Desks At All Points,” the X-Men’s enemies now know that Kitty can’t use the Krakoan portals to teleport onto the island, and they think they can use that against her...

This issue also marked a turning point for the young Ms. Pryde, as she finally told her best friends to stop calling her “Kitty.” Now, she’s simply Kate Pryde, and she’s already made a name for herself by leading a team to rescue mutants from a hostile regime in Russia.

Storm and Iceman were natural choices for Kate’s new team. Ororo Munroe has been Kate’s mentor since the very beginning of her X-Men stint, while Bobby Drake was once Kate’s boyfriend and one of her closest confidants. The odd man out is Pyro, who was unintentionally drafted into the mission when he accidentally stowed away on Kate’s starter boat.

It’s also important to note that Pyro is the original model, St. John Allerdyce, who died a long time ago in the "Dream's End" storyline while heroically opposing his Brotherhood of Evil Mutants teammates. John had an uncomfortable resurrection in X-NECROSHA and popped up a few times afterwards.

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Bishop will presumably be the final member of Kate’s crew. But for the moment, he’s in Taipei, Taiwan on an unofficial investigation to find Lim Zhao, a mutant who “disappeared” through a Krakoan portal and never returned. Mrs. Zhao is whipping up the population with anti-mutant sentiment, which may have been the point all along.

Kate may be in charge of the boat and her crew, but Emma Frost is running the show. Emma doesn’t come right out and declare that Kate will be the new Red Queen of the Hellfire Club, but she does tell Kate that “you will ravish in red.” Emma was also very candid about offering the position to Storm first before being immediately rebuffed. However, Mister Sinister’s gossip column suggests that Emma asked at least one other person before settling for Kate... Now who could that be?

If you know your X-Men lore, then you know that the Marauders were a group of killers who were under the leadership of Mister Sinister during the MUTANT MASSACRE. Kate was badly injured during their first battle and spent years trapped in her ghost form. Yet somehow, the Marauders’ name was the first thing that came to mind when Kate publicly announced her team. Storm offered some reservations about taking the name, but she ultimately went along with it.

Speaking of Sinister, one of the issue’s supplementary articles is "The Red Diamond" gossip column from Bar Sinister. Think about that for a second. Sinister and his clones are the only inhabitants of Bar Sinister. So, essentially, Sinister is writing this gossip column for his other selves to read...assuming they haven’t been killed already.

Sinister’s hints may be a sign of things to come. He noted that "not everyone got their invite" to Krakoa from within the Hellfire Club. How many disgruntled Kings and Queens will be looking for payback? There was also an overt assertion that Kate’s big ship is only the public face of the Hellfire Club’s international actions. Sinister claims that “the slow boat is built to catch all the eyes, but it's the one under the radar that's really turning heads.” If there’s a second boat, it begs a few obvious questions: who’s manning that boat, and why?

Those are among the many secrets that may come to light as the Dawn of X unfolds.

Read MARAUDERS #1 at your local comic shop today!

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