X-Men: The Hidden Years; Worlds Within Worlds by John Byrne and Tom Palmer (The Hidden Years)

In a world where mutants try to co-exist with normal humans, there are always those who can rise to become better men and women and Charles Xavier takes them into his school for the gifted mutant and helps them realise their true potential. He thinks that together they can become an excellent fighting team, but there are others who do not share his vision.

This is the last volume of the classic X-Men Tales; previous volumes are; X-Men: The Hidden Years: The Ghost and the Darkness, and X-Men: The Hidden Years: Destroy All Mutants. Here John Byrne and Tom Palmer bring us more tales of the X-Men and their foes; Dazzler, Yeti, Kraven the Hunter and Magneto. Without Xavier’s united front helping them they would be vulnerable, yet they have more enemies than they could think of.

In Death Be Not Proud, Angel is reminded of the fact he's a mutant and his mother takes ill. Angel thinks she might die unless he can find someone who can help him out, but there is someone who has not been as friendly as he should be. Hank is going up against Kraven the Hunter in Hunter and Hunted. Hank could be beaten by Kraven who has heard all about his having the strength of several men. He thinks he is vastly superior in skills and puts Hank to the test. Magneto makes his return in Let Loose The Dogs of War. Here the X-Men could be defeated, and Professor X has to help them out once again. Magneto plans an assault on the Fantastic Four where he makes them do his bidding, though he is unaware of their team’s strength as well. Magneto thinks he has the upper hand by kidnapping Invisible Girl, but all he will succeed in doing is encourage Reed Richards to come and rescue her.

The stories are a mixed bag and some of them are in several parts. X-Men: The Hidden Years: Worlds Within Worlds has the X-Men put to the test at the one time where they are the most vulnerable. The stories are inventive and at times emotional, but the team have each other to keep them strong in the face of adversity. It is interesting to see one of the best comic series to come out of Marvel come so far.

8/10 The stories are inventive and at times emotional.

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