SPOILER ALERT! We’ll be discussing Powers of X #1 and other past issues of X-Men comics. If you want to go in “fresh”, read that issues and come back here.
Powers of X#1 quickly deepens Hickman’s X-Men run with brand new lore. In this case, we see a few versions of the future (100 years and 1000 years forward from the first year of the X-Men).
There aren’t a lot of references to past moments in X-Men history, as we are focused on a lot of brand new characters. These new characters are based on multiple existing X-Men characters (the issue explains this in great detail in their awesome infographics).
Still, there are a few references you may want to familiarize yourself with either before or after reading Powers of X#1. Here are a few key issues.
Two villains are important to Powers of X#1: Nimord and Mister Sinister.
Nimrod is featured in this issues as a main villain in the 100 years forward future and is also featured as supporting character in the fare 1000 years forward future.
Nimrod was first introduced in Uncanny X-Men #191 as an ultimate version of the Sentinels. He hails from the Days of Future Past timeline (see more on that below). He is first fully featured in Uncanny X-Men #194 and plays the major villain role in Uncanny X-Men #208-209.
Nimrod already has history of evolving past mutant hunting, as seen in Uncanny X-Men #246 and #247.
Mister Sinister is also extremely important to Powers of X #1. Though we don’t see him, he is, according to the infographics, a driving force that led to the status quo of the 100 years forward version of the future.
Mister Sinister first appeared in full in Uncanny X-Men #221 during the Mutant Massacre. His origins are explored in the Further Adventures of Cyclops and Phoenix where the titular characters go through time once again (see below for more on that) and witness the birth of this supervillain. He was last heavily featured in Kieron Gillen’s Uncanny X-Men (2011-2012) run, though he was also slightly featured in Hickman’s Secret Wars event, as well in Extraordinary X-Men and Secret Warriors.
Alternate Futures and Realities
X-Men have a rich history of dystopian alternate futures and realities. Though Hickman has stated that his story is not an alternate reality or time travel story. We can assume the main story will still be set in the current continuity, Powers of X reveals that potential futures will play an important role. Here are some of the most important alternate X-Men futures.
Days of Future Past
Days of Future Past (Uncanny X-Men #141-142) is a classic Claremont/Byrne story that takes place in the near future, featuring a much older Kitty Pryde taking over her younger (current) self’s body to halt an assassination that is the tipping point that leads to their dystopian, mutant-hunting era.
This story also features Destiny and Mystique, who will be important in upcoming issues of House of X.
Bishop is an X-Man from about 80 years in the future in a similar setting to Days of Future Past, though at a point where Mutants have been emancipated, though policed by their own.
Adventures of Cyclops and Phoenix
In the Adventures of Cyclops and Phoenix, Cyclops and Jean Grey are brought 2000 years in the future to raise Nate Summers (later Cable) after he was sent into the future about year prior. Here we see a world that is run by Apocalypse. This is one of furthest flung futures seen in the pages of X-Men, and one that goes beyond the time presented in Powers of X.