While Synch’s promotion to the X-Men was widely acclaimed at the Hellfire Gala, a former Gen X member is clearly not happy about being snubbed.
WARNING: The following contains spoilers for X Men # 21 by VC’s Jonathan Hickman, Nick Dragotta, Russell Dauterman, Lucas Werneck, Sara Pichelli, Frank Martin, Matthew Wilson, Sunny Gho, Nolan Woodard and Clayton Cowles, on sale now.
The X-Men’s election finally took place at the Hellfire Gala, where the heroes, leaders, and dignitaries of the Marvel Universe were assembled. When the results were announced, a former member of the Generation X ’90s teenage mutant team was among the heroes who earned a spot on Cyclops and Jean Grey’s X-team.
On X Men # 21, Synch took his place on the team alongside X-Men veterans like Rogue and the winner of the Polaris fan vote. While two of his former Generation X teammates, Skin and Mondo, could be seen enthusiastically congratulating him on his promotion. Another Generation X alumnus, Monet, was less enthusiastic about his achievement.
Monet St. Croix, better known by her codenames M or Penance, clearly looks sideways at Synch after her X-Men membership is announced. As surprising as it may be to see a crack in the facade of Krakoan solidarity, it is entirely in the character of M.
M has many impressive qualities, with a power set that includes flight, invulnerability, and telepathy. Beyond that, he has a genius-level intellect, including an eidetic memory. Recently, she used that intelligence to save Storm’s life after she was infected with a techno-organic virus and is currently using her business acumen to lead X-Corp.
M might consider Synch joining the team instead of her as a slight, given her experience with X-teams. After Generation X disbanded following Synch’s death, M went on to serve in a number of mutant squads, including the original X-Corporation and the X-Force Weapon led by Sabretooth.
Outside of Gen X, M might best be remembered as an indispensable member of Jamie Madrox’s X Factor Investigations, where he came face-to-face with the Hulk and She-Hulk. He has also served on two different X-Men teams. A team of women, where she served as a muscle after Rogue left to join the Avengers, and the nervous team led by Magneto where she developed a doomed romance with Sabretooth.
In addition to his powers and experience, M comes from a privileged life. His grandfather was a French aristocrat and his father was Monaco’s ambassador to France. She was her father’s favorite daughter and had a privileged upbringing. Although he has suffered his share of adversity, mainly at the hands of his brother Emplate, he has retained his haughty exterior. She has admitted to Doc Samson that it was a coping mechanism after Emplate’s abuse, she rarely lets her teammates see her as anything other than a snobby socialite.
Monet’s reaction to Synch’s promotion could be due to his genuine sense of entitlement or simply to keep up appearances. It could also be due to the fact that Generation X is not as close-knit as their predecessors, the New Mutants. The fact that their last pre-Krakoa meeting involved active Gen X alumni battling an Emplate-possessed M probably didn’t help matters. After everything that’s been through, even his relationship with Synch during his Gen X days probably doesn’t provoke much nostalgia.
No matter how M feels about it, Synch has earned his place in the X-Men. He was part of a small group that infiltrated the Children of the Vault base, where he learned that his powers had expanded after his resurrection. Instead of just being able to mimic the powers of mutants, he could now copy the abilities of other superhumans like the Children. Synch escaped from the vault before the Children killed him, meaning that he is the only member of the group who retains his memories of the century they spent there. That gives him additional decades of experience and knowledge of one of the biggest threats against Krakoa.
While M was not selected to join the X-Men’s “fearless” new incarnation, she is not sitting on the sidelines in Krakoa. She will continue to lead X-Corp along with Angel and her handpicked board of directors. Given her vast skill set, it’s hard to believe the X-Men won’t call on her to contribute to a different kind of team building in the future.
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