In superheroics, taxes are apparently optional, because the only two things that are truly certain are death and rebirth. To that end specifically, X-Men founder Charles Xavier has assembled a team of five mutants, imaginatively christened The Five, to put the resurrectional studies of Moira MacTaggert into action following the establishment of the sovereign island nation of Krakoa.
The team of Fabio “Goldballs” Medina, Kevin “Proteus” MacTaggert, Joshua “Elixir” Foley, Eva “Tempus” Bell, and the first new mutant born after M-Day, Hope Summers, have perfected a process by which they were able to reproduce the bodies, powers, minds, and memories of their fallen brethren, thereby taking the insignificance of “comic book death” to an entirely new level.
One of the few mutants who has, for reasons yet unknown, been unable to cross through the Gateways to Krakoa, however, is Kitty Pryde, who first appeared in X-Men #129 in January of 1980. Instead, she has taken up command of a seafaring ship, dropped the feline nickname in favor of Kate Pryde, and assumed the title of the Red Queen of the Hellfire Trading Company in an effort to rescue mutants from inhospitable nations and deliver them to the safety of Krakoa.
Spinning out of the events of Powers of X #6, Gerry Duggan’s Marauders series has followed Captain Kate Pryde and her crew’s globetrotting adventures for ten issues, most recently culminating in a confrontation with the Black King, Sebastian Shaw, that ended with her being cast to the bottom of the ocean where she appears to have perished. And while that would seem a temporary inconvenience in Jonathan Hickman’s new Dawn of X status quo, the promo for Marauders #11 indicates that might not be the case.
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“The X-Men thought they conquered death,” the teaser says, next to an image of Kate Pryde laid out on a bed of flowers in a small boat. A stoic Emma Frost and a distraught Ororo Munroe are positioned by her sides as they lead the vessel out onto the water, a crowd of silhouetted onlookers watching from the background. “Looks like they were wrong.”
Of course, one wonders how seriously readers will take this death, given the infamous impermanence of mortality throughout comics. Kate’s fellow mutant, the practically indestructible Wolverine recently perished during a summer-long event literally titled “Death of Wolverine,” only to return four years later in the aptly titled Return of Wolverine miniseries.
Whether Kate’s death is meant to last, and how her potential inability to be resurrected might relate to why she can’t pass through Krakoa’s Gateways, remains to be seen, and Marauders #11 may begin to answer some of those questions when it hits shelves this May.