Up until this time I had assumed that Marvel simply decided that the Savage Land would be unknown to most of Earth in spite of nearly countless superhero incursions into its prehistoric environs. It seems that the world does know and there's a fight against commercializing it. Too much reality for me.
In the Savage Land are Magneto and company.
The villain Zaladane is building some strange towers over there and the world sends S.H.I.E.L.D. to investigate much to their (S.H.I.E.L.D.'s) dismay. In the panel above the burning mire surrounding Magneto, Rogue and Ka-Zar is what's left of the heretofore, initial S.H.I.E.L.D. investigation.
Oh, Zabu's here too, of course. The four are promptly attacked by the Savage Land's mutants.
Magneto shows his ability to literally leech the metals from the soil to form a metal shield.
It just occurs to me that Magneto cannot be anything but rich - he's a one man mining company.
My favorite mutant has got to be the four-armed Barbarus
It's a bit of a struggle, with Ka-Zar temporarily blinded, Rogue apparently powerless and a weaker Magneto. Nonetheless, even a weak Magneto is a formidable foe.
Magneto wants to kill their foes, Rogue does not.
Is Rogue a fool? Magneto practical? Or is Rogue correct and Magneto a killer? I think the answer lies with the person. When you kill, you cross a path inside your soul that you can never go back to again. Magneto has killed before - starting with the crew of that sub in X-Men 1 - for him to do so again won't affect him like it will Rogue who is not a killer. The decision point is whether Magneto wants to keep Rogue's good opinion of him. and he does.
The strange Antarctic towers were erected by somebody named Zaladane and she and Magneto are not on friendly terms.
Here's an interesting bit of trivia: Magneto wears red as a tribute to those who lost their lives in the Holocaust.
Here is Zaladane with her minions.
At this point in the tale the Master of Magnetism is weakened with weakened allies but a fight with a very confident foe is nearing. The once proud Magneto is the underdog. I love underdogs.
Here's another Magneto trick.
He's able to summon his costume. The only other person able to do this is Tony Stark.
Among Zaladane's forces is someone known as Worm.
A thoroughly disgusting fellow.
Before long, the battle is joined
It seems both combatants have powers grounded on magnetism.
Magneto is overwhelmed and Ka-Zar and Rogue are besieged.
It's one of those 'before the end' moments.
Just before the end, the battle is joined.
Remember that submarine I was talking about from X-Men 1?
Magneto's old ghosts come to haunt him.
Magneto and Rogue have developed a relationship.
It is revealed that Zaladane draws her power from the magnetic field itself and is on a collision course to become one with the Earth. Her emotions will directly reflect on the behavior of our planet. You know what that means, when Zaladane gets a monthly period it will be the end of the world.
Beautiful shot of U.N. gunships.
Back at the site of the X-Mansion (the Mansion is currently ruined) Lila Cheney has teleported most of the X-Men to - someplace.
Someplace that starts to attack them.
We all know them but I still appreciate the roll call.
Before the issue ends their host introduces herself.
Deathbird is currently the Empress of the Shi'ar.
The 275th issue is a Giant-Sized one.
We open with a Starjammer attack.
Here is a beautiful shot of an Apocalypse-class Shi'ar battleship. Underneath is the much smaller ship of the Starjammers.
The Starjammer's motto.
'The greater the odds the better the fight' - something for us to remember during those life moments when we feel like we're going to throw up.
Uh oh, here come the Imperial Guard.
The odds just flew out the window.
Beautiful panel of the X-Men trapped by Deathbird.
Uh oh, somebody gets loose.
Deathbird counters effectively though.
More than that she manages to "kill" Wolverine.
Of course, it's technically not possible to kill Wolverine.
As Deathbird makes her retreat, Lillandra, the Starjammers, and the X-Men meet up.
The X-Men are still baffled about where Lila Cheney teleported them. It is all explained and a decision is made.
It's the Imperial Guard vs the X-Men and the Starjammers.
I've always considered the Imperial Guard to be the equivalent of DC's Legion of Super-Heroes.
While the battle is going on we have the imminent Round 2 of a previous fight.
And the winner is.
How the heck did they take out Gladiator? That's like taking out Mon-El.
And the Deathbird-Wolverine fight?
To cap things off Professor X reveals himself.
Now back to the Savage Land.
The reason why Rogue is fidgetting is that she's wearing armor. The invincible Rogue is not used to being made to wear armor; but she has lost her powers. Here's a better view of that armor.
They're off to another fight with the uber-powerful Mistress of Magnetism, Zaladane. They're bringing their own magnetic powerhouse though.
Colonel Semyanov has been seething at being in such close proximity to the murderer of his son, Magneto. Suddenly, he is unable to contain himself and fires at Magneto.
Magneto goes down but so does one of the other gunships. It's a bonehead move because very shortly the U.N. forces are attacked by. . .
Back in the crash site a T-Rex(?) looks at Rogue the way you and I would look at a crab.
That armor she's complaining about saves her life plus it seems that Rogue still has some of her old strength.
Conveniently, the only four crash survivors are Zabu, Ka-Zar, Fury and Rogue. Waitaminute, it makes sense, Zabu is a giant cat, Ka-Zar is at peak form. Fury is a recipient of the super-soldier serum and Rogue's powers are slowly returning.
In Zaladane's headquarters Magneto is alive but captured.
And look, even Shanna has been made subservient by the fetid Worm. What we are witnessing is the impending transfer of all of Magneto's power to Zaladane. Two sessions are needed and one is complete. During the course of this session Magneto's past is displayed for all to see.
The horrors Magneto has been through the trauma he has received are all but intolerable. I understand his anger. Those who would call this one evil should see the path he walked if only to understand how Magneto came to be.
Fury and the rest manage to infiltrate Zaladane's headquarters.
As they go to rescue Magneto something wonderful happens.
She's able to do a lot of damage but in the end she falls victim to Zaladane.
Amidst the fighting Magneto is able to use the equipment to restore his powers.
But was he fast enough to save Rogue? Yes he is.
Magneto kills Semyanov.
Was this the right thing to do? Yes, and no. He had to kill the Colonel because the Colonel would stop at nothing to avenge his son. And who can blame Semyanov? He is a father in the right, avenging his son. Magneto is also in the right to destroy somebody who would destroy him. And Magneto is guilty of murdering those submariners including the young Semyanov. He is not absolved of that and he did what he had to. What a complicated character Magneto has become.
Next, Magneto contemplates the destruction of Zaladane.
Magneto makes his decision against massive opposition from his allies.
Not only that. Magneto makes his stand.
I admire him. I will always respect his strength and his willingness to do what must be done. It is, sadly, also the end of the burgeoning Magneto-Rogue romance.
The issue ends with a mouth-dropping cliffhanger. With the X-Men/Starjammer victory Lillandra should have regained the title of Majestrix Shi'ar - and she has. In the celebration that follows members of the X-Men and the Imperial Guard are attacked and the villain is revealed!