Friday, May 18, 2012

Adaptoids: The Curiously Strong Robots (Issue #29)

Let's judge this book by its cover:
Not just Adaptoid ... it's SUPER Adaptoid! Which means that it's better than any adaptoid you've seen, to date. And it's green. OK! Judging this issue on its cover turned out to not be such a great idea / source of laughs. Let's move on!

The X-Men are on a winter outing to go ice skating. A fun time is had by all...

The Ironic X-Men: Bobby is terrible on ICE skates!
...except for Cyclops, who slouches off into the woods to brood and pout and attempt to control his eye beams without his protective glasses. He manages the brooding and the pouting, but not the controlling-his-eyes part and destroys a mountain.  And then shouts his love for Jean Grey. And then has a mental breakdown of sorts.

That's Oprah's couch-jumping crazy, right there.

My mom said that my uncle had "uncontrollable eyes" too, but only after a few drinks. A few more and it was "hands". This is not true and all of my uncles are really nice people and I'm sorry I used them for a cheap joke.

Having then declared his teary-eyed love for Jean, a woman his eyes prevent him from having, he rejoins the group, repressing his feelings way, way, down.

Unfortunately, his eye-based destruction caused a robot known as the Adaptoid - the SUPER one that we heard about on the cover - to wake from its robo-slumber. I'd never heard of it, but it seems to think it killed Captain America, but it really didn't. [Only flagging sales can do that!]

This Adptoid used it's adaptoidness to adapt [adopt] the powers of "four of the Avengers". Which ones? Unsure! But you can get some clues from its dress-sense:

Watch The Throne, Adaptoid.
I see a bit of Captain America in there ... maybe a little Green Scales-Man, a bit of Dish-Back, and a smidgen of The Boot-Wearer. But now that its been awakened or awoken, what's its plan? Destroy all of humanity. [The factory-default robot setting in the Marvel universe.] How? By building more adaptoids to take over the planet, of course!

It will start with Bobby who, unlike all the other X-Men, did not go back to mansion, but opted to stay out to perfect his ice skating. Adaptoid attacks ... well, attacks is a strong word for what really happens. "Falls through the ice at" is a better way of putting it. To get away, Bobby covers the robot in ice and scampers back to the mansion.

"As X-Men, we are UNUSED to seeing bizarre things, Bobby. How
could we possibly believe you? Now, let's all go fight dinosaurs."

The team thinks Bobby just wants attention. [Everyone knows an Iceman will leave ice cubes in your shoes, if they want that.] Before The Case Of The Lying Iceman can be solved, Calvin "The Mimic" Rankin, blows his top about something or other and starts fighting the X-Men again. Seriously. They need to call in those guys from that TLC reality show, "It's Me Or The Mutant" to house-train The Mimic. They just can't have him lashing out like this! "I've been afraid to have people over, for fear of what The Mimic might do!"

Prof. X calls an end to the fighting, but then, having suffered through one too many "bald jokes" at the hand of Mr. Rankin, Xavier kicks him out of the group, out of the house, and unfriends him on Facebook.

With his hot-headed, screw-you-all attitude, I'd say that Mr. Rankin is even money for a redemptive scene in the near future ... perhaps (dare I morbidly dream) even a redemptive DEATH scene?! Probably not. these are books written for children [and 60's children, at that. Not today's blood-thirsty, Hunger Games versions].

To calm down, the group goes outside to play football. This issue brought to you by: Sports. Try Sports, a healthy alternative to most other activities!(TM)

The Adaptoid chooses now to make his appearance, catching a football with one hand! Take THAT Tebow (Does he catch footballs? Probably not! [C'mon. Like it's a surprise that someone spending their free time blogging 50 years of the X-Men doesn't watch football?!])

You should see how it grabs a pebble!

To his credit, Iceman does not go into a long-winded "I told you so" routine [like the one I would have, that would've gone on for so long that the giant robot would have had time to kill me and all my x-friends, too. And as I blacked out into the sweet arms of the reaper, I would have thought I was justified and that it was something they all really needed to hear. Justified.]

The Adaptoid announced that it sure would like to en-robot-ize each of the X-Men. The X-Men had other plans for the rest of the day (possibly playing a third sport in the out-of-doors?) so they decline. They decline with their FISTS! Of course, a group of teen-aged mutants are no match for a robot. (Of course? I still don't understand the power structure here. By these rules, this robot is stronger than Magneto. I am disbelieving.) But Adaptoid can't turn their unconscious bodies into more adaptoids because of a sub-clause in the Adaptoid's charter states that adaptoid-izing only works on willing subjects. [Like hypnotism and The South Beach Diet.] The Mimic hears this and thinks, "The robot life's for ME!" and volunteers.

I cannot improve this panel with a caption.

Cyclops wakes up from his beating just enough to be able to talk The Mimic out of the transformation by dropping the science that Adaptoid doesn't want a friend, it wants a slave and, despite what Nine Inch Nails would have him believe, there is no happiness in slavery. So, "No life of indentured robotry for ME!", says The Mimic and shoves aside the adapting hand of the Adaptoid. To break the awkwardness of the situation, Cal starts a fight with the giant robot. Proving that he can mimic the X-Men all too well, Calvin quickly loses the fight.

Once defeated, The Adaptoid tries to "scan" The Mimic's powers into its database, making them his own, but since The Mimic's powers are not natural (full of transfats and high fructose corn syrup) The Adaptoid's attempts to scan him result in a feedback loop which strips BOTH mimicker and adapter alike of their powers. Since this happens high in the air, both plummet to earth. One is caught by Angel and one crashes into the ocean.

So, The Mimic has become human once more, but did NOT die. What kind of lesson is that?!

Want to read along? This story is contained in:
Marvel Masterworks: The X-Men Volume 3