Welcome to the fourth installment of A Very Merry X-Mas, where I count down my 24 favorite X-Men (or X-Men related) Christmas stories!
Today, we look at #21, "Logan's Lost Lesson" from Marvel Holiday Special 2012 by Kurtis J. Wiebe, Patrick Scherberger and Cory Hamscher
In 2011, the X-Men titles underwent a schism in a storyline that was titled, appropriately enough, "Schism," in which Wolverine and Cyclops essentially broke up the X-Men over a difference in opinion over how the younger members of the X-Men should be treated. It had been a number of years since the X-Men last operated a school and things were going poorly enough for mutants that Cyclops was treating the younger students more and more like they were little soldiers. Wolverine, on the other hand, believed that they should go back to the way things were in the past when the X-Men actually taught young mutants. So there was a big ol' thing where the various members of the team decided whether they wanted to remain with Cyclops and be part of a sort of expansive mutant strikeforce or go back to Westchester with Wolverine and re-established the school for mutants, with the older X-Men working as teachers.
Two of the major X-Men to go to Westchester with Wolverine were Iceman and Kitty Pryde, who became Wolverine's co-headmaster. Naturally, Wolverine also got the vast majority of the younger X-Men to go back with him as "school" typically seems a lot more appealing to a young person than "paramilitary strike force."
With Wolverine as the headmaster, though, he teaches them some life lessons by teaching them hockey in this story from Marvel's 2012 Holiday Special.
The game, of course, ends up teaching each of the kids certain life lessons (including the resident mutant member of the Brood)....
In the end, Wolverine's tough lesson about life turned out to be one that involved the students all bonding with each other and Wolverine "accidentally" found himself creating the sort of warm and tender moments that one would typically associate with a Christmas story...
It's a pretty adorable story and it used the Wolverine/Kitty dynamic to great effect, with there being few other people in the world who could get away with treating Wolverine as much of a softy as Kitty Pryde treats him. Kitty, by the way, was briefly dating Iceman during this period. This was soon before Iceman came out.
The artowrk by Patrick Scherberger beautifully evoked the Nick Bradhshaw artwork that was appearing frequently in the main Wolverine and the X-Men ongoing series at the time (when the X-Men split up, Cyclops' team appeared in Uncanny X-Men while Wolverine's team appeared in Wolverine and the X-Men).