Jonathan Hickman and Pepe Larraz’s House of X opened with a singularly bizarre image: Professor Xavier watching the X-Men hatch naked out of big orange eggs, welcoming them to apparent life with his traditional cry of “To me, my X-Men.”
It was freakin’ weird. And now, with House of X #5, we know what’s actually happening there. And it’s even weirder.
And if you’re wondering whether this has anything to do with what happened to the X-Men in House of X #4, well ... read on.
[Ed. note: This post contains spoilers for House of X #4 and #5.]
We’ve known since the beginning of House of X/Powers of X that Professor Xavier’s plan for the future of mutantkind involves establishing a mutant state and offering citizenship in that nation to any, and all, mutants. But there have been attempts to form mutant nations before, and they have all failed — some of them in the form of mass genocide.
To prevent that from happening this time, Xavier’s plan has a number of other elements, like convincing human nations to recognize mutant sovereignty by offering three life-saving drugs that can only be created by the mutant nation of Krakoa. And also mounting a suicide mission to destroy a sentinel factory on the sun.
And that might seem ambitious enough, to you, but you’re not Charles Xavier. He didn’t come to Krakoa just to prevent mutant genocide. He wants to reverse mutant genocide.
Professor X wants to resurrect 16.5 million mutants
House of X #5 reveals that Krakoa is home to a group of five mutants who, by merging their powers, and with some help from Cerebro, can resurrect any mutant. Composed of some characters quite prominent in X-Men canon — like Hope Summers — and others less so — like Goldballs — the group is known as the Five, and are revered for their role in this mutant future.
Hickman and Larraz use the resurrection of the X-Men strike team that died destroying the sentinel sun base to show the readers how the Five prepare a viable egg, imbue it with a fallen mutant’s DNA — as collected by Mister Sinister’s mutant genetic database — and accelerate the growth of the new mutant body to the age the person was when they died.
Then Professor X steps in and uses Cerebro to imbue this mutant husk with a “backup” mind. Apparently he’s been creating a backup copy of every mutant mind on the planet every week.
Hell, I only back up my laptop every 15 days.
If there’s any doubt as to whether it’s only the best and brightest of Xavier’s mutants who get a big egg-driven second chance, Charles and Magneto have address the issue head on. The plan is to resurrect the 16.5 million mutants who died when Cassandra Nova destroyed the mutant state of Genosha. And according to the issue’s textual dossiers, Professor X and the Five could get it done in as little as 10 years.
House of X #5 opens with Magneto philosophizing to his daughter Polaris about the nature of society. He says the he and Charles Xavier always wondered what mutants might do if they were able to stop running, hiding, and otherwise responding to humanity’s hatred and fear.
“What would happen,” Magneto muses, “when — like with man — the greatest necessary traits in mutantdom weren’t strength and aggressiveness, but intelligence, ingenuity and creativity?”
Hickman and Larraz’s answer to that question is certainly big.