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Thursday, April 23, 2015

Psylocke Key Comics Part 2


Alright, Part 2 and the last part to this Psylocke key comics series. Many of these will be bargain bin buys when we near the end of Part 2. You'll see, but you'll also see why some of them are on here.

If you missed Part 1, click the link to go back. Otherwise, here's the last few Psylocke key issues to ogle.




UNCANNY X-MEN #213
Psylocke joins X-Men
Officially adopts the codename Psylocke
 
Ah, as if this one wasn't popular enough already since it is one of the first Wolverine and Sabretooth scraps in comics, Uncanny X-Men #213 also has another key issue notation. Yes, this issue has Psylocke officially join the X-Men and officially adopt the codename of Psylocke that was referenced to her in New Mutants Annual #2.

Well-known comic for other reasons, but is starting to get well-known in terms of a Psylocke key issue. For those who have this comic and didn't know, maybe want to spread the word or snag up some more copies before it catches on.

If movie hype does reach this comic, I doubt it will last very long. If you're just an X-Men or Psylocke fan and looking for the character's keys, this is definitely one. Psylocke's first appearance in the Uncanny X-Men title is Uncanny X-Men #211 if you didn't know.

Uncanny X-Men #213 was published January, 1987.

eBay - Definitely no problem finding this one on eBay at the moment. Plenty of raw copies and quite a few 9.8 slabbed copies and other high grade options.

mycomicshop - Quite a few copies of this one here as well. Four CGC copies and three are 9.8 Signature Series. CGC 9.6 NM+ is the only Universal Label so far. Plenty of raw copies in actual stock and the highest is a VF.

NewKadia - Two copies here and they are NM minus and a VF+.

ComicConnect - One CGC 9.8 copy located here for now.

ComicLink - Quite a few copies here and all are CGCs. Three 9.8s and three 9.2 NM minuses.




UNCANNY X-MEN #256
1st appearance as Lady Mandarin
1st appearance new Psylocke &  costume
 
With Olivia Munn cast as Psylocke in X-Men Apocalypse, it seems that the FOX franchise will be going with the more popular and fan-favorite Asian-looking version of this character. Uncanny X-Men #256 is the first appearance of Psylocke as Lady Mandarin, but after flipping through my copy, it does show the character in what would become the favorite and iconic Psylocke costume that came out the late 80s.

Of course, this one has seen heat due to speculation and rumors, but who knows how much more this comic will go up in value due to confirmation and casting of the character. We shall have to see about that. Still, if you're a fan of this version of the Jim Lee Psylocke, this X-Men comic is a great key issue to own.

Uncanny X-Men #256 was published December, 1989.

eBay - Due to the speculation hype, this issue a lot more scarce on eBay than it use to be. Less than a two months ago, there were plenty of copies concerning this issue. Only 4 CGC copies left and all the high grade 9.6 NM+s and 9.8s were pretty much snagged up prior. Highest now is a 9.2 NM minus or low NM for Universal Labels. There is a Signature Series 9.6 NM+ signed by Chris Claremont. A few raw copies also available.

mycomicshop - Only five copies here and the only CGC copy is a 9.2 NM minus. Highest raw copy is an 8.5 VF+ on consignment. Other raw copies are in actual stock.




X-MEN #17 VOLUME #2
1st appearance of Revanche

In Uncanny X-Men #256, it was never really explained how or why Betsy Braddock went from a British woman to a Japanese woman. Although this issue does not explain the origin, it does hold the first appearance of Revanche other wise known as Kwannon.

Kwannon was the prime assassin of the Japanese crime lord Lord Nyoirin, and she makes her first appearance in this issue. As X-Men fans know, she is an important character in the Psylocke origin mythos though she doesn't last very long in the series, and all that will be explained in the next issues to come. At least, I'll try my best.

February, 1993 is the publishing date for X-Men #17 from the volume 2 series.

eBay - Pretty much over-looked and no CGC. Not a great selection for this one currently on eBay. Spotted a few raw copies.

mycomicshop - Five raw copies in actual stock. Highest are a NM and two VFs. Last two are FNs.

NewKadia - Five copies here at the moment starting with a NM and NM minus. Last options are a VF+, a VF, and a FN+. 




X-MEN #20 - 23 VOLUME 2
1st Kwannon & Psylocke origin
Revanche (Kwannon) joins X-Men
 
As mentioned in the prior listing of this key issues list, it was never revealed how Betsy Braddock went from British to Japanese. X-Men #20 through 23 doesn't explain how, but it does reveal quite a few things that are important when it comes to the characters of Revanche and Betsy Braddock.

First X-Men issue #20 reveals that Revanche looks a lot like British Betsy Braddock, whom accuses the new Psylocke as an imposter. Let the drama to this 1st origin story begin.

Issue #21 sees Revanche join the X-Men team and continues this strange body snatcher phenomenon in the pages of the X-Men. Revanche believes herself to be the real Betsy Braddock while Psylocke rebukes that notion of course.

Things would get even hairier as this story arc progresses further. I remember reading the entire story arc back in the day, and even this 1st attempt at explaining how or why Psylocke becomes Asian was even confusing then.

X-Men #22 reveals that Kwannon and Betsy Braddock had somehow merged minds. Just when Psylocke angers and accuses this fact as lies, Lord Nyoirin arrives and explains to the two that both of them are Kwannon and both of them are Betsy Braddock. Yeah, I know, pretty crazy.

Also revealed in X-Men #22 was the fact that British-looking Betsy (Revanche) could read a Japanese scroll while Asian-looking Betsy could not. Although X-Men #20 through #23 reveals that Revanche and Psylocke are connected, X-Men #22 seems to be the one that reveals a freeze-dried origin of how Kwannon and Betsy Braddock merged minds.

The issue would show a flashback scene of Kwannon finding Betsy Braddock washed up on a dock in Osaka. Kwannon tries to save Betsy whose mind is fractured, but when she touches Betsy, their minds merge.

Unstable with no sense of herself, Kwannon runs off blindy after this incident. This origin or story would be later revamped a few issues later concerning how Betsy and Kwannon somehow swap bodies and merge minds as well as genetics. 

It seems that the scroll from which they learned of this event was not accurate. I'll cover those issues after this listing.

X-Men #23 from the 2nd series continues to reveal that Kwannon and Psylocke share the same "soul" as it's called by Lord Lord Nyoirin. He further tries to explain this, but just confuses.

When Revanche and Psylocke hunt down Matsu'o after Lord Nyoirin drops his name, Matsu'o also reveals a little bit of what happened but not much. We learn that Matsu'o is responsible for what happened to Psylocke and Lord Nyoirin is responsible for molding Kwannon or British looking Betsy Braddock into an assassin for his own purposes.

The whole story arc and even the issues that further it are a jumbled mess of confusion, probably one of the most confusing story arcs ever. Still, when it comes to Psylocke key issues and how the whole Asian/British Betsy Braddock Freaky Friday riff happens, these issues are keys.

The publishing dates for these comics range from May, 1993 - August, 1993.

eBay - Over-looked as well. Did spot a few raw copies for these issues. Not surprising but no CGC for these comics yet.

mycomicshop - Raw copies available for these issues at mycomicshop.

NewKadia - All these issues are in stock at NewKadia and most have NM copies to snag.




X-MEN #31 -#32 VOLUME 2
Death of Revanche
2nd origin Revanche & Psylocke
Death of Lord Nyoirin
 
While X-Men #20 through #23 revealed that Psylocke and Kwannon had switched bodies and some of the players involved, it was not all that detailed on what truly conspired. X-Men #31 and #32 revisits that story arc to conclude it.

Issue #31 sees the death of Revanche or Kwannon due to the Legacy Virus, but before she does, she takes out her bionic eyes (the ones given to Betsy Braddock's body by Mojo) and gives it Psylocke. This story arc reveals that Matsu'o, the Mandarin, Lord Nyoirin, Mojo and Spiral all had a hand in the strange switching of bodies concerning Revanche and Psylocke.


X-Men #32 from the 2nd series sees the data taken from Betsy Braddock's bionic eyes and reveals what happened and why. It is revealed that Spiral was the one who had switched their bodies and merged the two minds together.

Issue #32 also sees the death of Lord Nyoirin, the master of Kwannon. Matsuo is the one who killed him, and he was the love of Kwannon. So the entire strange origin story goes somewhat like this:

Because of a conflict of interest between the Hand and Lord Nyoirin (master and also lover of Kwannon), Matsu'o (high ranking Hand official) and Kwannon were honor-bound to face each other in combat. Falling from an ocean cliff during the conflict, Kwannon suffered injuries that left her brain-damaged and comatose with no hope for recovery.

Shortly after, Betsy Braddock's body was found washed a shore at the Hand's island base in the South China sea. Matsu'o sought the help of Spiral to return to him his love, and Spiral transferred the two women's minds into each other's bodies, also intermingling their DNA.

Matsu'o tried to have Psylocke become the Mandarin's 2nd in command, as seen in Uncanny X-Men #256 through #258. Kwannon was recovered by her master Lord Nyoirin. The bionic eyes that was implanted in New Mutants Annual #2 is revealed to be implanted by Spiral and Mojo to be used as an interdimensional camera of sorts to spy on the X-Men.

Funky origin story arc all around, but it is what it is. Blame it on writer Fabian Nicieza, whom is also the creator of Revanche. Matsu'o Tsurayaba's first appearance was in Uncanny X-Men #255.



April, 1994 - May, 1994 is the publishing dates for these comics.

eBay - I only spotted 3 raw copies for X-Men #31 and only one raw copy for #32 currently on the mighty eBay.

mycomicshop - One raw VF copy for issue #31 in stock. A VF and two FNs for issue #32 and all are raw. There is another version for issue #32 in stock and it's a VF. This other version does not have the Marvel Masterworks trading card insert.

NewKadia - Both issues are in stock at NewKadia. High grade NMs are available also.




EXCALIBUR ANNUAL #2
  • Origin of Jamie Braddock
  • Another origin of Betsy Braddock
Although this issue really details the origin and life of Jamie Braddock, it also reveals a bit about Brian and Betsy's past as well. In a catatonic state, Jamie's mind is probed by Psylocke, hoping to find a way to help her brother escape the current state he is in.

While probing his mind, his entire life is revealed in a flashback. This origin telling reveals how he had to take care of his younger siblings while his parents were away to the events that shaped and molded his current predicament.

Some sources are noting this issue as Psylocke's origin as well, but that's pretty flimsy. It definitely is the origin of Jamie Braddock though.

Excalibur Annual #2 was published May, 1994.

eBay - Only a few raw copies of this one on eBay at the moment. Over-looked and probably deemed not worth listing by most. I'm pretty sure this one isn't rare despite not having much of a selection on eBay currently.

mycomicshop - Only one VF raw copy in stock at the moment.

NewKadia - All copies in the NM range. There's a NM+, a NM, and a NM minus in stock.



Some of these key issues that pertain to the character of Psylocke either aren't that well-known in the current market or just aren't that cared for. What's certain is that Captain Britain #8, New Mutants Annual #2 and Uncanny X-Men #256 are currently hot in the market.

These Psylocke key issues are some important and minor sticking points for the character. Maybe some of the ones featured here are a bit overzealous, but I tend to do that. Maybe some are ones you never knew about.

If you're a fan of the character, some of the not so well-known ones maybe great additions to your collection. If you're speculating in the 3 important Psylocke comics now, that maybe a bit risky since we have no idea if the character will just be a one-shot for the X-Men Apocalypse movie or if she will be set up to return for additional X-Men movies.

Anyways, I hope this helps you to locate some Psylocke key issues or to decide whether or not you want to dump them if you have them already. This concludes this key issues request.

You can click the PREVIOUS link if you missed Part 1 to this Psylocke key comics series. More key issue comics are surely on their way, so stay tuned and thanks for reading, commenting and sharing!



7 comments:

  1. Hey Mayhem,

    Uncanny X-Men 213 has another thing going for it: its the first time we see Wolvie an Sabretooth together on a cover. Their first encounter was in Wolverine 10. Also not to shabby.

    Triple A

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    Replies
    1. Nice! That's a good bit of information to know Triple A. Yep, Wolverine #10 is still considered their first encounter...until some writer retcons it or writes a story that sees Wolvie and Sabretooth meet prior to Wolverine #10. Could happen. lol

      Delete
  2. Hello Mayhem,

    just wanted to bring your attention to another sleeper for your 2nd appearances list: Batman 183: 2nd appearance of Poison Ivy - hope you like.

    Ace

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    Replies
    1. Heya Ace, I'll be sure to add that to the 2nd appearances list when I get the chance. I think I listed it in one of the price range key issues lists or over-looked/undervalued keys list. It's in one of those.], but you is right. Definitely belongs on the 2nd appearance list. Thanks for bringing that to attention.

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  3. Captain Britain vol. 1 No 34 is the first time Betsy shows her metal powers when she wakes up from a precognitive dream.

    The Daredevils No. 3 is the first appearance of Betsy with her iconic purple hair.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. *mental powers. Not "metal powers." Oops.

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  4. Super Spider-Man and Captain Britain 243: 1st appearance of Betsy as a professional model and 1st appearance of Slaymaster (who is later responsible for blinding Betsy in Captain Britain vol. 2 No. 13).

    ReplyDelete