What's going on with the X-Men in the post-Krakoa era?

X-Men #25 variant cover
(Image credit: Marvel Comics)

It's been nearly a month since the anti-mutant terrorist group Orchis brought the mutant nation of Krakoa to its knees in X-Men: The Hellfire Gala 2023, and seemingly sent 250,000 mutants to their deaths. So what's happened since? What actually happened to those mutants? Who is still dead, and who is very much alive?

We'll start with the biggest question. What happened to the bulk of the population of Krakoa - nearly 250,000 mutants according to the text - who were sent through the Krakoa gates by Xavier in the Hellfire Gala one-shot?

Despite Xavier's fears, the apparent mutant genocide turns out to be false. Instead of being dead, all 250,000 mutants are stranded far out in a vast desert, somehow cut off from Xavier's telepathic reach, as shown in Immortal X-Men #14.

(Image credit: Marvel Comics)

In some, let's say, heavy handed symbolism, the mutant fanatic Exodus vows to lead them all from the desert to an unseen "promised land."

If you're not getting the connection, the book of Exodus in both the Torah and the Old Testament of the Bible tells the story of Moses leading the Jewish people through the desert out of Egypt to their own Promised Land, Canaan.

At the same time, the rest of the core X-Men are dead or scattered, with a ragtag team of mutant survivors led by Emma Frost and Tony Stark - who are about to get married - living in the Morlock tunnels under Manhattan to escape the watchful eye of Orchis' StarkTech Sentinels, built with ill-gotten Iron Man technology. 

The resistance has also found an unlikely ally in Wilson Fisk, the Kingpin, who has returned from retirement because his wife, the mutant villain Typhoid Mary, was targeted by Orchis.

Cyclops and Jean Grey are both presumed dead, with Madelyne Pryor confirming in Dark X-Men #1 that she felt Jean's psyche die when she was killed in the Hellfire Gala one-shot. We'll see if that sticks, as Jean is about to get her own limited series in which she reunites with the Phoenix Force, the entity of cosmic rebirth.

(Image credit: Marvel Comics)

As for Cyclops, it's been heavily hinted in the new Uncanny X-Men #1 that he's been revived as Orchis' new super soldier Captain Krakoa, who has been attacking humans to instill anti-mutant fears. But that remains unconfirmed, with it looking more and more like it's not Cyclops after all.

Meanwhile, in Astonishing Iceman #1, it's shown that Bobby Drake didn't actually die when he was melted by super-hot nanites in the Hellfire Gala one-shot. Instead, he was turned into mist - but his consciousness was still strong enough for mutant empath Romeo to pull him back together. 

Bobby's resurrection has come with a price, however. He can't return to his human form, and he can't leave his secret Antarctic base for more than an hour without losing his physical body again. But this evolution has also come with an advantage, since he's now able to apparate nearly anywhere on Earth without Orchis noticing him, allowing him to strike out at Stark Sentinels and escape again without being caught.

(Image credit: Marvel Comics)

At the same time, Kamala Khan has joined the mutant resistance, with her upcoming Ms. Marvel: The New Mutant limited series set to dig into her adventures in the post-Krakoa era. 

And while the X-Men have found a new ingénue in Kamala Khan, Kate Pryde, herself once a teen mutant hero, has gone full Wolverine. She's now going by Shadowkat, a play on her '90s "Shadowcat" codename, and using her ability to pass through Krakoa gates, which are now cut off from other mutants, to attack and slaughter Orchis forces using her ninja fighting skills, as seen in X-Men #25.

Elsewhere, on the mutant planet Arakko, Storm and the rest of the council in X-Men: Red #14 are dealing with their own war with the exiled mutants of Amenth, who were sent away at the end of 2020's X of Swords crossover event.

So there you have it - the broad strokes of where the X-Men are at since their nation of Krakoa fell, with much more to come as the current 'Fall of X' era rolls on.

Stay up to date on all the new X-Men comics coming up from Marvel.

George Marston

I've been Newsarama's resident Marvel Comics expert and general comic book historian since 2011. I've also been the on-site reporter at most major comic conventions such as Comic-Con International: San Diego, New York Comic Con, and C2E2. Outside of comic journalism, I am the artist of many weird pictures, and the guitarist of many heavy riffs. (They/Them)