21st – 29th July 2014
I bought “Days of Future Past” because of the title. It just sounded so interesting. Besides, it still counts as one of the classic X-Men comics.
It was published in 1980 and 1981. You immediately see that in the art style of that time, and especially in the colouration. Back then, there was only a limited number of colours available and therefore there is a great similarity of the pages. Although the artist and colourist found ways around that, the pages are still very two dimensional. I guess there is no real choice if the background can really be in just one colour and if there are no shadows.
Days of Future past is on the one hand the story of what happens after Jean Grey has died. The X-Men are awestruck, Cyclops takes a sabbatical and Strom the leadership. It is very difficult for them to carry on. On the other hand, it is the story of Kitty Pride joining the X-Men. She is a thirteen year old girl who can walk through matter. Unrelated to the past, she brings new, fresh spirit.
The main story ark is a time shift to the future. Several terrorist attacks of the evil mutants let to all mutants being first interned and then killed. Kitty is among the last survivors. She sends her mind back to her thirteen year-old body and tries to prevent the attacks. The story is then told on two different timelines. In the future the last survivors barely escape the prisons, in the present the X-Men fight off the evil mutants. However, the story never really goes back to the future. It is not clear, if Kitty succeeded. But then time travel creates parallel universes and you can’t really change anything.
To be honest, I was a bit disappointed with the comic. The writing was too descriptive, too detailed for me. Too much what characters do and why is explained, rather then just showing the art and let it work for itself. To some extend that is due to the limited art production of the time, but I think all the description is just not necessary. Then, the story of Kitty Pride missed its potential I felt. It is a good story, a very good idea, but told very roughly. It seems as if there was not sufficient time for a second proofread. It cuts off here and there where you wanted to know more, or looses itself in unnecessary detail.
I had expected something more. Well, I had not read up on Days of Future Past before though. But I think, even if I had, it would not have prepared me better. This is a comic you should have read to be able to talk about it, but I would not necessarily recommend it for any other purpose.