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Top 50 Comic Book One-Shots: #25-21

22. "Demon" Uncanny X-Men #143 (1980)

The last issue of X-Men that John Byrne, Chris Claremont and Terry Austin ever did together, this one-off where Kitty Pryde is alone at the X-Mansion on Christmas Eve when a demon attacks might be the greatest final issue from an acclaimed creative team EVER, as Kitty remarkably does whatever she can to stop the demon solo.

It is a tremendous issue and really solidified Kitty as a bad ass.

21. "The Pact" New Gods #7 (1971)

“The Pact,” written and penciled by Jack Kirby and inked by Mike Royer, comes seven issues into the New Gods series, and works as a brilliant little look back at the origins of the then-current war between the New Gods of New Genesis and those of Apokolips.

In this story, Kirby cleverly shows how Darkseid came to be in power, but at the same time, he also shows how Highfather came to be the way that HE is.

The book opens with a striking set scene where two lovers are interrupted by violence...

The wife is murdered and the surviving spouse, Izaya, is intent on killing as many enemy soldiers as possible.

Later, we see Darkseid establish Boom Tube technology through the help of Metron…

This allows forces from Apokolips to just show up at New Genesis. However, Steppenwolf (the then-head of Apokolips, and the uncle of Darkseid) was shocked to learn that even catching Izaya by surprise was not enough and Izaya essentially went into berserker mode, killing every enemy in front of him, including Steppenwolf.

However, Izaya was so messed up about the slaughter that he ultimately consulted with The Source and decided to embrace pacifism and become Highfather. He sues for peace with Darkseid, who agrees, but we soon see that Darkseid was planning them a long time ago – also note how Mister Miracle’s “too on point” name is explained nicely)…

The book ends with a counterpoint to the violence it began with…

What a great comic book.

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