Welcome back to X-ual Healing, the weekly recap column where we obsessively read every X-Men and X-Men-adjacent comic that Marvel publishes, tell you what happens, provide additional context where necessary, and examine whether the comic makes good use of the long and convoluted history of the X-Men by referencing it in a way that’s accessible to new readers — because we here at X-ual Healing love the X-Men, and we want everyone else to love them too.
The X-Men are returning to their rightful place of prominence after a decade of insults and neglect by a Marvel editorial that feared and hated the fact that Fox owned their movie rights, which means it’s finally time for X-fans to enjoy some…
If you need to know more on the premise of this column, check out the longer explanation here.
ROGUE & GAMBIT #5 (OF 5)
KELLY THOMPSON (W)
PERE PEREZ (A)
Cover by KRIS ANKA
• It’s ROGUE and GAMBIT vs. LAVISH for all the marbles (nobody cares about marbles anymore, but it’s still a great saying, just go with it)!
• The stakes in Paraíso couldn’t be higher — the fates of innocent mutants, Rogue and Gambit, AND the hottest relationship in the Marvel Universe — all hang in the balance!
• Does being together make Rogue & Gambit unstoppable? Or does it doom their mission and everyone they’re trying to save?
• When the dust settles WHO and WHAT will be left standing?
32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99
Rogue and Gambit has been a gift to hardcore fans of the relationship between Rogue and Gambit. Hey. Don’t judge us. It was the ’90s! If you love these two mutants, and especially love them together, then this is definitely the book for you.
The story so far: Rogue and Gambit went to an island wellness retreat to investigate mutant disappearances and also work on their relationship, a process which mainly consisted of wonderful flashback scenes to various important points in X-Men history. Unfortunately, the retreat is run by a villain named Lavish who has been using Rogue and Gambit’s memories to create clone-things of Rogue and Gambit which also contain a portion of their power. Rogue and Gambit have begun destroying the clones, returning their powers and memories… but they got a little mixed up because the person who destroys the clone gets the memories, not the person to whom the memories originally belonged. Got it? Good.
The issue kicks off with Rogue and Gambit killing clones, doing their best to put the memories in their proper place. Some of the memories they absorb are painful, but both agree they have no choice but to take them all back, just like X-Men readers must take the good with the bad when we obsessively read every X-book published, no matter the quality. Rogue takes a time-out from the fight to check on Dr. Grand, the psychologist who manages the retreat and Lavish’s flunky. Rogue rips off Grand’s neck scarf to reveal that Grand’s head is sewn onto her body. She too is just a clone-thing. Rogue claims to have finally figured things out. Rogue destroys her, absorbing her memories.
This queues a flashback to Grand’s past. She’s actually mutant who absorbs memories, but the memories and power become too much for her body to handle, so she creates duplicates that contain some of the power and memories. Grand is a clone-thing of Lavish?! Or the other way around?! Or something sort of like that?!
Rogue is now armed with some of Lavish’s power, which gives her what she needs to confront Lavish, absorbing her power as well and becoming… uh…
Okay then. Rogue says she’s going to save Lavish, but Lavish ends up exploding. Oops! Turns out she was a clone-thing too. Rogue and Gambit aren’t sure if she was always a clone-thing, or if there was a real Lavish who escaped at some point. Now, Rogue has all this unicorn demon fairy power and nothing to do with it, so she has to spend it by making out with Gambit in the best kissing scene ever.
Later, Rogue also returns all the power and memories she absorbed from the other patients on the island. Everyone agrees it’s best to keep your memories and baggage, even if it’s painful, because it’s the only way to move forward, or something deep and meaningful like that. As a result of all this introspection, Rogue and Gambit decide to pursue their relationship again and Gambit reveals he is a cat person. The end.
We here at X-ual Healing ****ing loved this comic, and we hope the creative team gets one of the 6 or 7 weekly X-books in the next reboot. Rogue and Gambit forever!
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