The X-Men's new status quo in the Marvel Universe finds them living and working side-by-side with their greatest enemies. Villains such as Apocalypse, Mystique, and Sebastian Shaw now find themselves on the mutant island of Krakoa, working together with the X-Men to usher in a new era for mutantkind. However, at the moment no villain stands out of the pack quite like the eccentric Mister Sinister. Nathaniel Essex has cemented himself as a member of the X-Men's Quiet Council, the ruling body of Krakoa, but that hasn't stopped him from scheming in the background. Mister Sinister's latest escapades are documented in the releases of Immortal X-Men #3 and X-Men #12.
WARNING: Spoilers for Immortal X-Men #3 and X-Men #12 follow. Continue at your own risk!
Immortal X-Men #3 by Kieron Gillen, Lucas Werneck, Dijjo Lima, VC's Clayton Cowles, Tom Muller, and Jay Bowen puts the spotlight on Destiny, who has the power to see possible futures. One particular future gets the codename "The Expanse" and finds a Phoenix-powered Exodus chasing Mister Sinister, aka Gene-Corsair, through space. Mister Sinister is apparently responsible for the fall of Krakoa, and Exodus punishes Sinister by literally devouring him. Before he's eaten, Sinister gloats about doing away with the timeline. Destiny's vision goes black after Sinister's death, which she realizes means his death triggered the end of the timeline. The only mutant with that power was Moira MacTaggert, a former friend and now an enemy of the X-Men. Destiny discovers Mister Sinister cloned Moira – revealed in Immortal X-Men #1 – and stole her powers. Moira had the mutant ability of reincarnation, with the added bonus that she retained her memories when her life was rebooted. So now Mister Sinister can sacrifice his clone bodies to see how a particular timeline plays out and download that information into his prime body when the clone dies.
This makes Mister Sinister a dangerous player in the lives of the X-Men, but this isn't the only plan he has in motion. X-Men #12 by Gerry Duggan, Pepe Larraz, Marte Gracia, VC's Clayton Cowles, Tom Muller, and Jay Bowen has an entirely different Sinister subplot for our heroes to deal with. Cyclops and his X-Men have been investigating a new villain named Dr. Stasis, who is working with the anti-mutant organization Orchis. The last issue finally unmasked Dr. Statis, revealing him to be Mister Sinister all along – at least, a possible clone of Mister Sinister. It's becoming harder and harder to know what the truth is when dealing with the character.
To his credit, Dr. Stasis claims he is the one true Nathaniel Essex. He tells Cyclops, "That strutting monstrosity is just a failed experiment that polluted themselves with your vile genes!" Readers learned back during the House of X/Powers of X era that Sinister has Thunderbird's DNA, which the recently revived mutant will probably have a problem with at some point in the future. Essex's hatred for mutants may have something to do with a young boy who's shown in a picture. When Dr. Stasis self-destructs his home, he picks up a photo of a young mutant with what appears to be an unusually large head. He tells the boy in the photo, "I'll fix what's broken in you...," so there must be a major connection between the two.
Mister Sinister is involved in several plot threads when you consider readers still haven't gotten the payoff to the Chimeras he helped create in Powers of X. The X-Men titles have only teased mutants using their powers together through the terraforming of Mars to Arakko and The Five's resurrection protocols. If Mister Sinister stays on this villainous track, he'll soon surpass Moira MacTaggert on their Most Wanted List. Of course, until Moira (disguised as Mary Jane Watson) and Orchis crash the 2022 Hellfire Gala.
Which of Mister Sinister's schemes is your favorite at this moment? Let us know your thoughts on Immortal X-Men #3 and X-Men #12 in the comments!