The X-Men's 'New' Retro Costumes Dive Deep Into Marvel's Legacy


Instead of wearing one of his more famous looks, Havok returns to the costume he wore when he briefly led the X-Men starting in 2005's X-Men #166. Salvador Larroca, who also drew this issue, designed this costume, a black bodysuit that has concentric blue circles and directional lines across its upper half. It also includes large silver gauntlets and boots, along with a head-sleeve that leaves Havok's hair exposed.

Havok wore this costume for a little over a year before he switched to a simpler, sleeker take on the same outfit. When Havok initially had this look, he was fairly unsure of himself, largely because of his ailing romantic relationship with Polaris. While he's not leading anyone in this issue, this issue still suggests some friction between Havok and his closest friend on the team, his brother Cyclops.


Uncanny X-Men Magik costume

Until a few years ago, Magik wore revealing costumes that reflected her status as the demonic ruler of the hellish dimension Limbo. However, she's been wearing a version of the standard X-Men uniform since she officially rejoined the team last year. In this issue, Magik returns to a slightly updated version of her original New Mutants outfit that features Limbo-inspired armor covering her entire left arm.

While the standard X-Men uniform she wears clearly signifies her a as a member of the team, her armor serves as a steady reminder of the dark potential that lies within her. But even though she doesn't hesitate to attack the villainous Dark Beast in this issue, the story doesn't really point towards a future dark turn, even if her armor serves as a visual reminder of the hero's tragic, troubling past.


Like Magik, Karma, Moonstar and Wolfsbane also appear to be wearing updated versions of their classic New Mutants costumes. While this issue doesn't offer a particularly good look at their uniforms, the heroes' looks combine their yellow-and-black 1980s outfits with the sleeker design and slimmer fit of the X-Men team uniforms Forge and several other X-Men briefly wore in the early 1990s.

While it's worth noting that Karma, like Forge, keeps part of her bionic leg exposed, these costumes visually tie Karma, Moonstar, Wolfsbane and Magik together, acknowledging their shared history. Since these are essentially the uniforms they wore as X-Men-in-training, the costumes suggest that they are soldiers, not generals, in Cyclops' new mission.

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By the end of this issue, Jamie Madrox, the Multiple Man, apparently joins the X-Men as well, and upcoming covers have indicated that Banshee and Hope Summers will join the team soon, too. Despite their dwindling numbers, these X-Men remain dedicated to protecting a world that hates and fears them more than ever before.

The X-Men's adventures will continue in Uncanny X-Men #14 by Matthew Rosenberg and Salvador Larroca, on sale March 20.

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