Warning: The following contains major spoilers for House of X #5, by Jonathan Hickman, Pepe Larraz, Marte Gracia, VC's Clayton Cowles and Tom Muller, on sale now.
One thing we've learned from Jonathan Hickman's short time on the X-Men franchise is to expect the unexpected. No longer content to be hunted down until all mutants become extinct, Charles Xavier has launched an aggressive initiative to provide mutants their own sovereign nation on Krakoa, along with producing pharmaceutical drugs and offering them to human nations that publicly support their cause.
Behind the scenes (and secretly in the X-Men's past), Xavier has allied himself with Moira MacTaggert and Magneto to secure a future for mutantkind, going so far as to make a deal with the villainous Mister Sinister. Obviously, desperate times call for desperate measures, and after digesting all of Moira's past lives, Xavier realizes the only way for mutants to survive is to band together -- heroes and villains alike.
Moira's ninth life showed her aligned with Apocalypse, with the future X-Men and Horsemen fighting to steal valuable information from Nimrod. Now, with the information uploaded to Moira X and the United Nations recognizing Krakoa as a mutant nation, the X-Men have officially opened Krakoa's doors/gateways to every mutant in the Marvel Universe.
The final pages of House of X #5 features a Who's Who of X-Men villains entering Krakoa. While some of the characters will be familiar, there are some that may leave the reader asking, "Who is that?" Thankfully, we're here to provide a rundown of which villains have accepted the X-Men's offer to join them on Krakoa.
According to Sage, the first wave of mutants entering Krakoa is 20. Mister Sinister leads the first group, as he's joined by Wild Side of the Mutant Liberation Front, Random, Lady Mastermind, Mesmero, Mentallo and a woman riding a dragon. This obscure mutant is possibly Animax, who has the power to animate creatures from her DNA. Animax's first appearance came in Battle of the Atom #1, and she also fought Ironheart in Invincible Iron Man #1.
Random was a supporting character in X-Factor, fighting on the government-sanctioned team's side as well as against them. Lady Mastermind is the daughter of the original Mastermind, and they share the ability to cast telepathic illusions. Mesmero has the power to control a person's mind, and Mentallo is another old school villain with psionic powers.
The second group to appear features Exodus, Sebastian Shaw, Selene, Emplate, Gorgon and Callisto. Exodus is a former Magneto Acolyte who is also confirmed to be an Omega-level mutant. Sebastian Shaw is the Black King of the Hellfire Club, with the psychic vampire Selene the group's Black Queen. Emplate is the brother of Monet St. Croix, who was miraculously brought back to life in this issue via the mutant resurrection protocol, after her team of X-Men sacrificed themselves to destroy a Sentinel space station.
Named after the Gorgon of Greek mythology, The Gorgon is a Wolverine villain who has associated himself with The Hand and Hydra in the past. And just like the Gorgon of Greek mythology, this villain can turn his enemies into stone by looking at them. Finally, the eyepatch-wearing woman is Callisto, leader of the sewer-dwelling Morlocks.
Of course, our next mutant entry is Apocalypse, who has played an important role in House of X and Powers of X. After Apocalypse walks through the gateway, he almost seems pleased to be reunited with Krakoa. House of X revealed the two mutants have a centuries-long history together, as Apocalypse and his original Four Horsemen defended the world from evil forces caused by the splitting of Krakoa and Arakko.
Wolverine and Magneto want to make it clear to Apocalypse that known of his previous treachery will be allowed on Krakoa. However, Apocalypse surprises everyone by stating mutants have finally asserted themselves as the dominant species, just as he has always intended for them to be. Speaking for all the assembled villains, Apocalypse willingly submits to Krakoan law. "One people. From this day forward," he says.
As Apocalypse submits, he is displayed standing next to former X-Man and Morlock, Marrow, Frenzy, Lady Mastermind, Black Tom Cassidy, another Morlock named Masque and Azazel, Nightcrawler's demonic father.
An earlier panel of all the characters listening to Apocalypse's speech has many villains that are indistinguishable, but a few stand out from the crowd: Aside from the aforementioned villains we already listed, we can see Fore-Arm of the Mutant Liberation Front and Wolverine's son, Daken.
While everyone has called a truce for the time being, the real question is how long will these new alliances last? Some of Marvel's Dawn of X titles include villains on the rosters, with Apocalypse (Excalibur) and Black Tom (X-Force) the two standouts. Everyone appears to be on their best behavior for now, but once tensions rise and outside forces like Orchis begin poking and prodding at the X-Men, we will see if the peaceful times continue on Krakoa.