Rick Remender Reveals Abandoned X-Men Plans

While self-quarantining in response to the new coronavirus pandemic, comics writer Rick Remender has been digging through some old files and sharing what he discovers via social media. He uncovered some early designs for Sam Wilson as Captain America and now he's come upon the pitch for a 2-year run on Marvel's X-Men books he was working on in 2014 before he left the publisher to pursue creator-owned projects. He revealed a photoshopped together image of the book's cast of characters that includes Storm, Xorn, Banshee, Omega Red, Fantomex, Jean Grey, Nightcrawler, Colossus, Cyclops, Psylocke, Deadpool, and Beast. He also revealed and the first script page for his The Extraordinary X-Men #1.

"Just found my entire 2 year X-bible plans from when I was going to take over the X books. Haven't opened it since I quit in 2014," he tweeted. "Was very Fantomex, Jean, and Professor X-orn centric. Big bad was Mastermind. Just couldn't make myself do the mandated Inhumans story. c'est la vie."

To put this into context, 2014 was right before Marvel launched its Secret Wars event, which reshaped the Marvel Universe and shuffled a lot of creators around to other projects. Brian Michael Bendis was writing the X-Men at the time, but he departed the books after Secret Wars.

Ultimately, Marvel did launch Extraordinary X-Men, but with Jeff Lemire writing instead of Remender, who had left the company by the time Secret Wars wrapped up, leaving the Sam Wilson as Captain America storyline in Nick Spencer's hands.

As for the X-Men, Lemire's run didn't focus on Professor X, Fantomex, or Jean, though Jean was part of the book's roster (Fantomex went to Cullen Bunn's Uncanny X-Men). It did focus on the tensions between the X-Men and the Inhumans, with the X-Men moving their school to Limbo to escape the toxic effects of the Terrigen Mists that had been released into Earth's atmosphere.

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The Inhumans were a major presence across the X-Men line at the time, with the X-Men's tie-in to the Civil War II event almost sending the two groups to war. Given that the Inhumans were getting a big push across other media at the time and the X-Men film rights were still with 20th Century Fox, conspiracy theories abounded among fans suggesting that Marvel was trying to replace the X-Men with the Inhumans.

The tensions between the two groups came to a head in the Inhumans vs. X-Men event, where the two sides finally did go to war. After the event, the Inhumans' presence in Marvel's line was greatly reduced and eventually removed entirely after years of expansion. The X-Men line began to grow again under the ResurrXion banner. Now it is in a new boom period with the Dawn of X initiative under Jonathan Hickman being the most talked-about story in superhero comics at this time.

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