Review by Karl Verhoven
Grant Morrison varied the tone and mood of his X-Men material, switching with every new story arc, and the greatest jump was for his finale. Planet X ended with a shock, and a coda over the final pages is set 150 years in the future as astronauts locate on the moon what they refer to as The Phoenix Egg. Here Comes Tomorrow continues in that era.
For almost all his run on X-Men Morrison veered away from the cryptic, the surreal and the inexplicable, but this requires some thought. It builds on the theme of revolution woven into almost every story arc Morrison wrote for the X-Men, be it against genetics, the status quo, humanity or a weapons programme. Here it’s an apocalyptic version of the future in which the Beast appears determined to wipe out all mutants.
There’s an irony about the few remaining X-Men, among whom there’s only the single familiar face, relying on Tom Skylark as their saviour. “I’m a human being, one of the last few thousand of us left, and I’m about to get intimate with extinction.” There are variations, or hints, of other X-Men, including some Morrison’s not used to this point, and of others he has used, such as the U-Men.
Everyone’s purpose hangs on the revival of the Phoenix, based on believing the essence of Jean Grey remains, and with her ultimate power at their disposal their will will be done.
There’s the feeling of closing the circle, as transformed characters from Morrison’s first X-Men story recur here, but anyone wading through the portentous scientific and mystical pyschobabble, and there’s an awful lot of it, is likely to be underwhelmed. It all comes down to a single element of the past requiring a tweak. Yes, there are big ideas and an innovative approach, but not all experiments work.
Artist Marc Silvestri’s reputation was largely founded on drawing the X-Men in the early 1990s. He’s very good at providing the dark, devastation of the future in which the story’s set, and widescreen science-fiction action and dynamic layouts, but less so at delivering credible people. He’s still stuck in his 1990s mode of adorning everything he draws with an excess of shading lines to no good purpose, and his bulbous Emma Frost is straight from that era of style over substance.
Morrison’s entire run on X-Men is available in multiple formats. There’s the oversize hardback Omnibus gathering all of it, and Here Comes Tomorrow can also be found in the third volume of the New X-Men by Grant Morrison Ultimate Collection. As well as this paperback it’s the eighth in a series of smaller digest size volumes.