It’s a walk on a tight rope. Even after House of M, there are too many mutants. New readers will drop the book the minute they hear about nearly 200 mutants living at the institute. But we can’t get permanently rid of them (through another Mutant Massacre) or the existing readers will jump ship.
So how to get them out of the picture? Time travel. There already is a mutant with the power of time travel, Trevor Fitzroy. He finds out that the X-Men will take away his powers in 2008. So at the day of Scott’s and Emma’s wedding, Fitzroy appears and teleports them all to another moment in time. A moment after 2008. Which moment? Readers will have to read the book to find out.
However, a few of the mutants present survive. Nightcrawler gets saved by Belasco (which creates a debt Belasco will be sure to cash in later), others were in the N’Garai dimension or otherwise out of the picture. Emma disappears. Scott doesn’t. Kitty disappears. Colossus doesn’t. The surviving mutants band together to fight Fitzroy. But Belasco is starting to pull Nightcrawler’s strings. Will he betray the team? Before the other members reappear?
With both time travel and demons in the X-Men’s future, Robert Weinberg seems to be the writer best suited for this run.
As an artist, I can’t believe that there still hasn’t been an announcement as to what Adrian Alphona’s next ongoing title will be. Before DC, Wildstorm or Image snatch him away, it’s time to put him on a big Marvel title. He’s the next big thing, so let him be that at Marvel. Let him be that on Uncanny X-Men. Just imagine what he could do with Belasco’s Limbo.
Marko Djurdjevic is my first choice for the cover art, since I think that it fits Robert Weinberg's writing style.
As for promotion, I wonder if Wizard would publish another X-Men special (side effect: This would cast the spotlight on Wolverine as well) that would exclusively reveal the new lineup. Ben? What do you think? Is this justified?