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X-Treme Rogue

X-Men
by yo go re

Once upon a time, Chris Claremont was a great writer. He helped turn a failing team book into a merchandising juggernaut and an entire family of titles. He wrote some of the greatest stories of the '70s and '80s, which is probably why Marvel seems to be taking pity on him today. Claremont's prime years are way behind him, but he's still allowed to have way more influence over the X-Books than he should. He still exerts a modicum of editorial control over the books even when he's not writing. And considering that the books he does write read like bad fan fiction, him having influence over anything more important than his own grocery list is a bad thing. Take, for example, X-Treme X-Men.

X-Treme Rogue Rogue joined the X-Men to learn how to control her power - the ability to absorb others' memories and talents through touch. With this power, she has also acquired super-strength, invulnerability and flight, making her an invaluable member of the Astonishing X-Men.

Note: that's "astonishing" as in the modifier, not as in Astonishing X-Men.

X-Treme X-Men, aside from having the dumbest name of any book in recent memory, was created for no reason other than to appease Claremont's massive ego. The X-Books' sales were in the toilet, and Marvel was bringing in new creators, like Grant Morrison, to liven things up. To keep CC happy, they let him start his own book with whatever characters he wanted. Not surprisingly, he cherry-picked all his usual favorites, including Rogue.

X-Treme Jacket This was the era when the X-Men all had leather uniforms inspired by the movies, so there's a lot of detail for the sculpt to convey. Rogue's costume looks like it has a real weight, real physicality to it - you can tell that some pieces are above others, with a bodysuit beneath it all. There are tons of small details on the costume, from the soles of her boots to the zipper running up to her throat. The back of her jacket has a doubled-up X pattern, and her sleeves are rolled up realistically.

Actually, there are two versions of Rogue available: X-Treme Eyewear the standard has short hair and a jacket, while the variant has long hair and goes topless. Comparatively. She's still dressed. Both versions have removable glasses and that white streak in her hair. These days is seems to just be concentrated in the front. When she first debuted, it was two streaks of white that ran back along the sides of her head, but they apparently grew together at some point, because for ages it was a single skunk stripe. Now it's just in the front.

X-Treme Paint Problems Rogue is quite thin, but she's articulated well, definitely answering a lot of fans' complaints about the previous ML females. She moves at the head, shoulders, biceps, elbows, forearms, wrists, fingers, chest, torso, hips, thighs, knees, shins, ankles and toes - there's no waist, which is a bit odd, but the figure still works okay without it. You'll notice that she doesn't have the superfluous arm joints that most of the ladies have suffered from, thankfully. The hips are balljoints, but they don't ruin her feminine look; neither do the double elbows and knees.

The paint is applied well enough, X-Treme Possibilities with only a little bit of mess around the knees, but there are problems. First, the hips are molded in red, so the paint comes off as you move them. Secondly, if this is supposed to be X-Treme Rogue, she's the wrong color. In the book, the team wore red and black, not red and blue. Only the highlights on the leather were blue. And if you want to get really picky (as most fans do), her jacket should be solid blue (if that's what we're going with), without any red on it. There are rumors that we'll be seeing the long-haired version repainted in her traditional green and yellow, but so far they're just that: rumors. Check out our digital approximation of what it might look like.

Rogue has no accessories, but she has no action features, either. This is just a nice, vanilla, super-articulated Rogue. Wanna see us make out? Since the only other Rogue we got in ML was a repainted box set exclusive, there will be a lot of fans after this one. Not only is she cheaper and easier to find, somewhat, but she's much hotter. Even if she is taken from Chris Claremont's stupid vanity project.

When the reboot came, X-Treme X-Men picked up the characters and the threads that Claremont had been hammering away at in the books previously. And although he had the best artist out of any of the three main X-Books, the fact was that no one but Chris cared what he was doing - it was just fanfic. The book managed to limp along for two years based solely on Marvel's goodwill toward Claremont's name, but eventually it got the axe. Fortunately for fans of good books, its slot on the roster - as the third X-Book - was filled by Joss Whedon and John Cassaday's Astonishing X-Men, a book that is everything X-Treme X-Men wasn't. You know, "enjoyable."


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