X-MEN #49
Marvel | Back To X-Men | October 1968 | Volume 1 | USA | 246 Owned
First Appearance of Polaris, 1st Jim Steranko X-Men Cover

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Basic Information
October 1968
Comic Age
Cover Price
  • * 1st Appearance of "POLARIS" (Lorna Dane) * 1st Appearance of "MESMERO"
  • CLASSIC "Jim Steranko" COVER
Interior Artist
Cover Artist
Stories may contain spoilers
Although the X-Men have been forced to disband by orders from the FBI, Angel still can't help himself but return to the X-Mansion. While lost in thought, Warren becomes aware of a ticking sound and finds that Cerebro is still active and running. To his shock, it's reporting a high concentration of mutants, prompting him to try and get in touch with the other X-Men. Straining to send out his thoughts, he manages to make a connection with Jean via her telepathic powers and creates a psi-link between them and Scott, Bobby and Hank. However, Jean couldn't pick a worse time to contact Bobby and Hank who are out trying skydiving. The momentary distraction makes it too late for Hank to pull his ripcord and deploy his parachute; however he is saved from a fatal fall when Bobby uses his ice powers to slow the fall.

While far in San Francisco, we learn that this gathering of mutants are led by a man named Mesmero, who is amassing a mutant army to rise up and take over humanity, and apparently is under orders by Magneto himself. Needing to recruit more mutants for this army, Mesmero uses a psyche-generator of Magneto's own design to send out a call to latent mutants to awaken and heed his call. Among their numbers is one Lorna Dane, who in a trance like state almost walks out into traffic and is saved at the last minute by Bobby Drake, who has come to San Francisco with the rest of the X-Men. When Lorna realizes that she has unknowingly traveled 1200 miles from home, she agrees to let Bobby take her back to the apartment he's rented out with Hank.

Hank is less than happy that Bobby has brought the girl home, with the pending arrival of Warren, Scott and Jean to investigate the influx of mutants in the area. However, when the other X-Men arrive, it appears that Lorna has fallen asleep, so the X-Men leave Hank behind to work on a portable Cerebro machine while they go and seek out the location of the mutant gathering. When they arrive at the mansion that Mesmero is operating out of, the X-Men are attacked by members of his Demi-Men army, who pledge an allegiance to Magneto during the fight. After a brief battle, the X-Men manage to defeat the Demi-Men, however Warren is injured in the fight and the X-Men decide to return to Hank's apartment to see if he has finished building the Mini-Cerebro.

Hank has indeed finished the miniature Cerebro machine, and it instantly starts picking up a mutant nearby. To Hank's surprise, it's Lorna who has just come out of the shower. She reveals her green hair, having used dye to cover it up. Hank covers up for his secret identity by telling her that he's a friend of Bobby and that he is on his way to a costume party. When the other X-Men arrive, they reveal to Lorna that she might be a mutant and then decide to investigate if somehow Magneto is still alive with the mini-Cerebro unit. Lorna does not recognize Bobby in his Iceman form and Beast once more covers for their secret identities by telling her Bobby is on a secret mission for them. When the X-Men leave, Iceman is left behind to keep an eye on Lorna.

Right after the X-Men leave, Iceman and Lorna are ambushed by Mesmero and some of his Demi-Men. When Iceman uses his powers to try and defend Lorna, he is easily overcome by Mesmero's mutant hypnotism. When the evil mutants approach Lorna, she panics until they stop and begin bowing down to her in worship.

Telling the origins of the Beast, our story begins with Norton and Edna McCoy. Recently married, the couple have relocated to a new home provided by Norton's employers an atomic energy plant. One day some of the carbon rods be lowered due to the fact that there is a short in the electrical systems.

Ordered to get the chief electrical engineer, Norton disobeys orders to manually lower the rods. Although in a protective suit, the radiation is intense and although Norton manages to save the day he passes out due to his exposure to the rods radioactivity. Norton survives and after a brief stay at the hospital he is released.

Sometime later in a new home and new job Norton and Edna conceive a child, however the doctors are worried about the state of the child given Norton's previous exposure to radiation. However months later, when their boy -- named Henry -- is born, the only odd thing about the boy is his large hands and feet. When Hank's Uncle Bob comes to visit, he responds to his uncles cooing by punching him in the chin. Marvelling at the boys strength, Bob tells them that the boy could be the next heavyweight champ and field kicker.

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Comic Cover for X-Men (#49)
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