Marvel's X-Men line is heading toward its first 'Dawn of X' era line-wide crossover in 'X of Swords', and part of the lead up includes a series of Giant-Size X-Men one-shots - the latest of which features the mysterious thief Fantomex, who hasn't been seen since he gave up his physical body to rescue Charles Xavier from imprisonment on the Astral Plane.
Though X-Men group editor Jordan D. White is staying mum on just how that particular mystery will be solved, he opened up to Newsarama about other aspects of August 5's Giant-Size X-Men: Fantomex #1 from writer Jonathan Hickman and artist Rod Reis.
The fourth of the five planned Giant-Size X-Men one-shots - the last of which is September's Storm spotlight - Fantomex ties into the mystery around Storm who was revealed to have a techno-organic virus in a Giant-Size X-Men: Jean Grey and Emma Frost #1.
White spoke to Newsarama about Fantomex's role in the 'Dawn of X' era, what the master thief is planning, and how this might all connect to 'X of Swords.'
Newsarama: Jordan, the X-Men line is finally getting started up again after COVID-19. How does it feel getting back in the swing of things? How does it feel to get this Fantomex story out there?
Jordan D. White: Well, we never stopped working, we just weren't able to actually get the stories into folks' hands! We've been working real hard on 'X of Swords' all this time, growing it in size and scope, making massive amounts of new work and coordination for ourselves just to keep life interesting.
No, I kid, it's to make it the best story possible, I and I think we're doing great on that front. I cannot wait for people to read it, just as I am so excited to finally be getting books out in shops again!
Fantomex has been cooking for so long, it's good to let his faux-French self out to finally woo/annoy everyone out there as much as he has been us. [Laughs]
Nrama: Fantomex is a unique character and his status as a mutant isn't exactly clear cut. How does he fit into Krakoa and the new era of the X-Men?
White: There has been a lot of confusion about him, hasn't there? He's such an untrustworthy character, it's hard to know what is really true and what is misdirection. I think he is not a mutant, I think he is a synthetically created person. I suppose they could have synthetically created him with an X gene though… I guess the mystery continues!
Nrama: Fantomex is a master thief, and in this one-shot he's breaking into The World, that manufactured environment where he was born and raised. What’s Fantomex's goal here?
White: That would be telling.
Nrama: OK OK... I'll let you keep your secrets for now.
Tell me this though... Rod Reis is drawing this one-shot, written by Jonathan Hickman. What makes Rod the right choice to tell this story with Jonathan?
White: The goal with these issues was to work with amazing artists and give them the opportunity to do what they do best. Rod is so awesome! The gorgeous work he did with Jonathan on New Mutants impressed us all so much, Jonathan wanted to do a book where Rod could draw what he wanted to and really strut his stuff — and thus this story was born!
Nrama: 'X of Swords' is coming up quickly. Being an occasional swordsman himself, will Fantomex factor into that crossover?
White: There are a lot of characters in 'X of Swords,' some unexpected... but of all the fake accents characters will be putting on in that story, I don't believe French is one. But keep your eyes peeled — this won't be the last of him!
Nrama: Bottom line, what do readers need to know going into Giant-Size X-Men: Fantomex?
White: I would say you need to know that Fantomex is a super-thief genetically created person raised in the time-sped up virtual environment of the World… but I think we cover that in the issue. It helps to know that something happened to Storm as shown in our Giant-Size Jean Grey and Emma #1 issue… but if you just like rascally gentlemen thieves, you're good jumping in without that knowledge, too. I think you just need to know when you should go pick it up!