The “Dark Phoenix Saga” in 1980 led to a change in the line-up of the team, with the death of Phoenix (Jean Grey), and Cyclops leaving the team to mourn for her. Comics writers and historians Roy Thomas and Peter Sanderson observed that “‘The Dark Phoenix Saga’ is to Claremont and Byrne what ‘the Galactus Trilogy‘ is to Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. It is a landmark in Marvel history, showcasing its creators’ work at the height of their abilities.” The storyline also saw the introduction of recurring antagonists the Hellfire Club, and its Inner Circle consisting of Sebastian Shaw, Emma Frost, Harry Leland, Donald Pierce, along with Mastermind, previously a member of Magneto’s Brotherhood. The new teenage mutant Kitty Pryde was introduced in #129 (Jan. 1980) and joined the X-Men in #139. The Dazzler, a disco-singing, roller-skating mutant, was introduced in #130 (Feb. 1980), but did not join the team, instead headlining her own solo title.
A new Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, led by Mystique, was introduced in the “Days of Future Past” storyline (#141-#142, Jan–Feb 1981) in which a time-travelling Kitty Pryde tried to avert a dystopian future caused by the Brotherhood assassinating Presidential candidate Senator Robert Kelly. Byrne plotted the story wanting to depict the Sentinels as a genuine threat to the existence of the mutant race. He then left the series after #143, being replaced by a returning Cockrum, who in turn was succeeded by Paul Smith and John Romita Jr.
This title allowed new and lesser-known writers and artists to write and draw X-Men comics. The comics were also usually self-contained stories; with the exception of a tie-in to the Onslaught crossover. This was particularly unique during the late 1990s when most X-Men titles frequently had story arcs that were several issues long. It ran as a quarterly feature releasing four issues per year until late 2002 when it converted into a monthly title.
New X-Men: Academy X was launched during the X-Men ReLoad event. The Academy X subtitle was dropped from the title when the new creative team of Craig Kyle and Christopher Yost took over the series with issue #20.
Whereas the other X-Men comics mostly deal with established adult mutants, this series concentrates on the lives of young students residing at the Xavier Institute for Higher Learning as they learn to control their powers.
After the 2007 crossover X-Men: Messiah Complex, the New X-Men title was canceled and briefly relaunched as Young X-Men for 12 issues. The series was written by Marc Guggenheim. After the first arc of Young X-Men, the characters began appearing in the pages of Uncanny X-Men. With the cancellation of Young X-Men the characters were folded onto the main X-Men books, appearing most prominently in the pages of X-Men: Legacy, Wolverine and the X-Men, and most recently, in X-Men.
Sales of The New Mutants had slumped for several years in the late 80’s, but took a sharp upturn after Rob Liefeld took over the penciling and co-plotting chores at the end of 1989. A new mentor for the group, the mysterious mercenary Cable, was introduced, further helping sales. Over the next year, several longtime team members were written out or killed off. However, the relationship between Liefeld and Simonson was fraught with tension, and Simonson claims that Harras dealt with the situation by rewriting her plots and dialogue so that the characterizations did not make sense: “Although I wasn’t being fired, I think I was being shoved out the door with both hands by Bob Harras. Bob was only doing what he had to do, I expect, which was make Rob Liefeld happy.” Simonson eventually gave in, leaving after issue #97. When Liefeld and Fabian Nicieza, who wrote dialogue based on Liefeld’s plots, took over as writers of the final three issues of the series, they included several harder-edged characters.
The New Mutants was cancelled in 1991 with issue #100, but the new platoon-like team formed by Cable continued in X-Force, a successful series (whose first issue sold approximately one million copies) that would continue until 2002, and feature a variety of the former New Mutants cast.
Chris Claremont made a brief return from #381 (June 2000) to #389, at which point he transferred to the new X-Treme X-Men title, as Grant Morrison took over the X-Men vol. 2 and that became the flagship X-Men title. From 2001 Lobdell made a short return, and then Joe Casey and Chuck Austen wrote runs into 2004. The title became bimonthly from 2003 to 2004.
The X-Men: Reload reshuffle of titles in 2004 led to Claremont returning to Uncanny with issue #444. The stories addressed the new status quo established by Morrison, with Jean Grey having died again, and Cyclops in a relationship with Emma Frost. Claremont remained until #473. His final story was the “Death of the Greys” in 2006, as part of the “Decimation” storyline, where the vast majority of mutants had lost their powers. He was replaced by Ed Brubaker, who wrote a 12-part epic space opera story “The Rise and Fall of the Shi’ar Empire”, as a follow-up to his miniseries X-Men: Deadly Genesis. After this the title led into the “Messiah Complex” crossover event, dealing with the first mutant birth since the Decimation.
Marvel Toys (formerly Toy Biz and Charan Toys) was a merged toy division of Marvel Entertainment. ToyBiz originated in Montreal, Quebec as Charan Industries’s American brand. Reincorporated in 1988, ToyBiz became an American firm. Toy Biz became a major producer of Marvel character toys and partially owned by Ronald O. Perelman‘s Marvel Entertainment Group in 1993. The toy division of Marvel was shut down during Marvel’s bankruptcy in 2008. The division was shut because Marvel Entertainment could not afford to have any in-house manufacturers any longer. Both Hasbro and Jakks Pacific purchased the trademarks to some of the characters and brands when the company folded.
Marvel Comics announced Uncanny Avengers by the creative team of Rick Remender and John Cassaday in August 2012. Uncanny Avengers is a new team of Avengers that features a line-up of both classic Avengers and X-Men including Captain America (Steve Rogers), Havok, Rogue, the Scarlet Witch, Thor and Wolverine. The team is formed in response to the events of Avengers vs. X-Men.
Remender said, “There’s something that Cyclops said to (Captain America) on Utopia that’s ringing in his head. He didn’t do enough to help. And Steve (Captain America) is taking that to heart. Coming out of AvX with the landscape shifted and changed as much as it is, there are events that lead Steve to recognizing that he needs to do more”.