X-Men: The Hidden Years #1: Once More the Savage Land

“Before Onslaught, before Apocalypse, before Phoenix and the tragedy of Dark Phoenix...before a man called Beast came to more closely resemble his name...or a high-flying Angel became a razor-winged tool of the enemy. Before a wary world came to know the X-Men as an international band of exotic adventurers...There were a handful of troubled teenagers and one man with a dream.”

As Professor Xavier lies in a coma, he still manages to contact his X-Men weakly to seek the help of Bruce Banner aka the Hulk. The X-Men try to hold him off as Angel searches for the item that they need. With the item in hand, they they race back to save Xavier’s life. The device works, and everything returns to normal.

But the joy is not for long as Bobby reveals that he intends to leave the team. After Xavier faked his own death because he “didn’t trust [them] enough to tell [them] what he was planning”, Bobby isn’t sure he can trust Xavier anymore. He walks out on the team as Xavier calls out to them telepathically on an urgent matter. He sternly reprimands the team not to be distracted by Bobby’s departure.

Asking the X-Men to open their minds fully to him, Xavier absorbs the knowledge of what has transpired during his “death”. Among other things, Xavier learns that his arch foe Magneto has hidden away in the Savage Land. Despite the X-Men’s efforts to stop him, Xavier isn’t convinced that the X-Men had killed him. He orders the X-Men to return to the Savage Land to confirm it.

The X-Men are unnerved by Xavier’s behaviour. Having being ordered to the Savage Land with “twenty demerits for this failing”, Angel feels that Xavier is still treating them like his students even though they’d graduated. Marvel Girl is worried that Bruce Banner’s device isn’t as effective as they had hoped as she senses something has changed. Approaching the Savage Land, they encounter a great turbulence that sends their jet crashing.

Back at the mansion, Bobby spies on Lorna and Alex taking a walk, upset that Lorna had left him for Alex. Both men engage in a fight and Iceman ends up flinging an ice shard into Lorna’s face. Lorna screams at Iceman that she was not his girlfriend and that he didn’t own her. Xavier interferes to stop the fight, and to seek their help for the other X-Men are in danger. Iceman merely departs.

In the Savage Land, Angel makes the decision of jumping out of the plane to guide Beast to pilot the others out of the mess. Unfortunately, the turbulence had damaged the jet and they’re headed straight for the mountains. Cyclops clears a landing strip for Beast with his optic blast. The jet doesn’t land as smoothly and Marvel Girl sustains a concussion while projecting a “telekinetic force-field bubble” to cushion their landing.

Upon landing, they encounter the natives of the Savage Land. The natives tranquilise them with darts. When they wake up, the three men are shocked to discover that Marvel Girl had “passed over to the land of the dead”.

Elsewhere in the Savage Land, the ghost of Magneto calls out to one of his followers, Amphibius, to seek revenge on the X-Men on his behalf.

Next: X-Men: The Hidden Years #2