> X-Men Masterworks Volume 2

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From the Mouths of the Marvels:

"As for the power of the Juggernaut, I simply quote the dictionary... 'A gigantic, inexorable force that moves onward irresistibly, crushing anything it finds in its path!'

-- Professor Xavier, to his X-Men, pg. 16

In a gradually heightening suspenseful and spooky fashion, the Juggernaut slowly makes his way to the X-Men!

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X-Men #12
July 1965 20 pages

Script: Stan Lee Letters: Sam Rosen
Layouts: Jack Kirby Pencils: Alex Toth
Inks: Vince Colletta

Ranked #44 in 100 Greatest Marvel Comics of All Time list

Title: "The Origin of Professor X!"

First Appearance: Cain Marko/Juggernaut; Kurt Marko, Sharon Xavier (both in flashback)

Villain: Juggernaut

Guest Appearance: Kurt Marko, Sharon Xavier (in flashback)

Origin: Cain Marko/Juggernaut, Charles Xavier

Innovations: Charles' father's name revealed as Brian

Letters Page: Page One Page Two

Synopsis: Professor Xavier grows frantic over the intense readings coming through CEREBRO. The unprecedented reaction the mutant-hunting machine is giving him makes him realize they face their greatest threat ever. He knows exactly what ominous tidings will come soon, and he directs his X-Men to safeguard the mansion with very precise directions. First, Iceman creates a super-thick wall of ice to surround the school grounds. Then, Cyclops uses his optic blasts to carve a trench into the ground that Marvel Girl and the Beast cover with branches to camouflage it as a booby trap. Finally, the Angel and Cyclops carve out logs and implant grenades inside them for the final trap. Once they are done, they return to the professor's side, and relates to them the dire story of why they are having to go to such lengths to defend themselves. He begins to tell the story he hoped he would never have to tell- the story of the threat from his own brother!

He tells them that his father- atomic scientist Brian Xavier- died in a mysterious atomic blast accident in New Mexico. As a young boy, his naive widowed mother took up with his father's supposed best friend, the man who Xavier was sure had something to do with his father's death. As the man, Kurt Marko, came to take advantage of his mother Sharon and her great fortune, the resentment only grew bigger. Kurt Marko's son from a previous marriage, Cain, came home from a school expulsion and immediately began taunting his new step-brother.

Xavier halts his story as they hear the mutant threat grow nearer, causing the walls of the mansion to vibrate. As he plows through Iceman's wall, Xavier continues his story: Cain attempts to extort his father for money by going public about how he had something to do with Brian Xavier's death. Cain throws a tantrum when his father denies the charge, and he topples over a collection of serums and chemicals, which when combined, explode in a fiery blast. Kurt Marko saves the lives of the two boys by pulling them from the fire, but he is gravely wounded, and in his dying words, tells Charles that he had nothing to do directly with his father's death. He also issues a warning to beware Cain Marko.

The professor must stop his story again, as his brother has now gotten to the booby trapped trench. As he takes time to work his way through the electrified trench, Xavier continues: Cain's jealousy towards his brother grew as Charles' mutant powers allowed him to excel in all pursuits, both academically and athletically. The constant fighting and bickering led to a grievous moment when Cain drove them off a cliff in his car, nearly killing Charles! At this point in the story, the team looks out the window and sees Marko's huge form skulking in the dark, triggering the grenade trap. They pop out of the logs and explode, causing a sleep gas mist to form. It causes him to stumble for a moment, allowing Xavier to tell the last portion of his story:

While serving together in the Korean War, Cain decided to desert the army and hide out in a cave. Charles followed to talk him out of it, and while inside the cave, they found Cain stumbled onto the lost temple of Cyttorak. He found a gem that imbued him with the mystical powers of the crimson bands, and he was henceforth the Juggernaut. A cave-in caused the rocky grotto to collapse, and Xavier ran out, knowing his brother was surely dead. But obviously, he had escaped with the powers of the Juggernaut.

Xavier directs his charges to put up the steel door to the mansion, as it appears that the Juggernaut had broken through all the other defenses. The door is lifted and they wait. Finally, the Juggernaut arrives, and begins pounding, pounding, pounding on the door. Finally, it buckles and breaks open. Iceman puts up a wall, but he bashes through it. Cyclops blasts him with his optic beams, but Juggernaut pushes his way towards him regardless. Finally, he knocks them all aside and stands alone in front of Xavier, prepared for total victory.

(continued in XMEN #13.)

--synopsis and panel images by Gormuu

-- scanned letters page provided by Karl Mattson

Issues Reprinted
X-Men #11-21

Click on cover image to learn more about each issue.

XMEN #11 XMEN #12 XMEN #13 XMEN #14 XMEN #15 XMEN #16
XMEN #17 XMEN #18 XMEN #19 XMEN #20 XMEN #21


All cover images are courtesy of the Silver Age Marvel Comics Cover Gallery.

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