> X-Men Masterworks Volume 2

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From the Mouths of the Marvels:

"All right, men - - into the car! No matter what happens, we're going to catch us some mutants!

-- NYPD cop, pg. 3

Charles Xavier leads the mujahadeen against Lucifer!

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X-Men #20
May 1966 20 pages

Editor: Stan Lee Script: Roy Thomas
Letters: Artie Simek
Pencils: Werner Roth (credited as Jay Gavin)
Inks: Dick Ayers

Title: "I, Lucifer..."

First Appearance: Mr. Philbert, the Supreme One

Villain: Unus, the Blob, Lucifer, the Supreme One

Guest Appearance: Mr. Philbert

Origin: Professor X

Cameo: The Supreme One

Innovations: CEREBRO gets an upgrade, first mention of Dominus

Gadgets & Technology: Ultra-Scanner, Mento-Wave Receiver, Mental-Wave Amplifier, Beam Distorter Helmet

Synopsis: Mr. Philbert, manager of the local bank, is rudely treated by ruffians the Blob and Unus, the Untouchable. They are clad in X-Men uniforms, and as they break into the giant safe, constantly refer to themselves as X-Men. The police try to stop them, but they make a clean getaway, loudly proclaiming that they are on their way to join "the rest of the X-Men." With firm resolve, the police captain proclaims it's time to do some serious "mutie hunting!"

Back at the school, Cyclops has made a grave decision to leave the X-Men, fearing his love for Jean Grey can never become reality while his eyes are a danger to all around him. With him gone, the X-Men hear the news reports about the X-Men allegedly breaking in to the city bank. Xavier uses CEREBRO to hone in on the two culprits- Blob and Unus- but he also senses another person behind the scheme! Just then, Bobby comes in with Scott Summers' goodbye note. But with no time to worry about their former leader's worries, they set out to solve this case. Xavier tries to no avail to determine the third unknown party, and the Beast goes and gets the ray gun they promised to use against Unus should he ever use his powers again (see X-MEN #8.)

Meanwhile, the third party is none other than Lucifer, and as he monitors his machines, he reflects back on how he discovered the Blob and Unus, who had recently teamed up, through the use of his Ultra-Scanner, and then mentally implanted the idea to impersonate X-Men in a life of crime to draw them out and expose them to defeat. Ironically, at that very moment, the Blob and Unus are pulling off a bank heist and Scott Summers walks by. He steps in to stop them solo, but the duo act like he's with them. No matter what Cyclops tries, the crowd thinks he's part of the heist, and they chase after him to stop him.

Lucifer is outraged that the whole team isn't attacking him all together, as was his plan, but soon, the Beast, Iceman and the Angel show up and take it to the reckless duo dressed as X-Men. The Beast aims the ray gun at Unus, but it's of no effect- Unus is now immune to it, thanks to Lucifer's interference! As the real X-Men try to take down Unus and the Blob, they are interfered with by locals who call them mutant menaces. Suddenly, Cyclops shows up to help them, blasting a hole underneath Blob and Unus' feet, sending them down into a subway tunnel where they land on top of a speeding train, sending them swiftly away. The X-Men make a quick trip back to the school to rejoin the Professor and Jean.

Xavier tries to locate the unknown mastermind behind all this, and Lucifer's Mento-Wave Receiver tips the villain off that Xavier has finally succeeded in finding him! But Lucifer is pleased, since now he can use his ultimate weapon, a giant cannon which fires a blast of energy that traces its way back across Xavier's mindwaves. Just as Xavier is about to communicate Lucifer's identity to Jean, the energy blast hits and he becomes paralyzed. He telepathically tells Jean that this is all the work of Lucifer, and tells her it is important that she listen and understand his tale of when he first met the evildoer:

While journeying in Tibet as a young man, when he still had the use of his legs, Xavier happened upon a city surrounded by tall and forbidding walls. Inside, he sensed many of the townspeople were under the mental coercion of a powerful force, and the ones that weren't lived in fear for their lives. Xavier spoke to a few who convened in an underground meeting, and the Westerner encouraged them to fight back the authority which dictated over them every day of their lives. They sensed in Xavier great leadership and decided to follow him in rebellion. They immediately set out to assail the leader, and they storm his castle, with Xavier helping the rebel team get past all kinds of booby traps and deadly machines.

The unknown leader sees all this action unfold, and he is contacted by his overlord- the Supreme One- who lives on another planet from the man he calls "Agent One." The Supreme One demands to know what is happening, and Agent One confesses that his castle is being overrun by rebels. The Supreme One dictates that Agent One abandon "Section A" and go to the Earth sanctuary established at "Section B." Xavier senses that his foe is an alien from another world, and when he finally confronts him, "Agent One" declares his true name- Lucifer- and tells Xavier he will never know his true purpose on Earth. Then, before leaving the castle, Lucifer drops a giant slab of granite on top of Xavier, crippling him for life.

Xavier finishes his story to Jean by telling her this was one of the great reasons he founded the X-Men, to one day meet the further threat of Lucifer. Back at Lucifer's command post, the Supreme One checks in with his Agent, Lucifer, and says that the time is ready for his true purpose- to deploy Dominus! Later, the X-Men make it back to the school and get the message from Xavier. It is time to head out west, to where Lucifer is, and stop him from taking over the world!

(continued in XMEN #21)

--synopsis and panel images by Gormuu

Issues Reprinted
X-Men #11-21

Click on cover image to learn more about each issue.

XMEN #11 XMEN #12 XMEN #13 XMEN #14 XMEN #15 XMEN #16
XMEN #17 XMEN #18 XMEN #19 XMEN #20 XMEN #21


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