Cullen Bunn digs up his favorite stories starring the killer robots!

Ever since they first debuted back in the mid-1960s, the Sentinels have become an indelible part of X-Men mythology. Created by the dynamite duo of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby—and by Bolivar Trask in the comics—they’ve taken different forms and served several masters over the years, but one thing remains constant about the purpose of their existence when it comes to the X-Men: Detecting and destroying mutants.

“Sentinels are so iconic,” says Cullen Bunn, author of the currently running X-MEN: BLUE, which will host the return of the malevolent mechanical menaces this May. “I can barely imagine the X-Men without them. They’re terrific adversaries, because—in most cases—they simply have no human personalities. They exist for one purpose—to destroy mutants—and they follow that directive with cold mercilessness.”

Since “[X-MEN: BLUE] issues #2 and #3 are loaded with Sentinels,” according to Cullen, we asked him to recount his favorite Sentinel stories from over the years.

Read on for some rock em’ sock em’ robot mayhem!

Uncanny X-Men (1963) #98

Uncanny X-Men (1963) #98

What is Marvel Unlimited?
“Merry Christmas, X-Men–The Sentinels Have Returned!,” “Deathstar Rising,” and “Greater Love Hath No X-Man” in UNCANNY X-MEN #98, #99, and #100:

“Sentinels know no holidays. They attack the X-Men…on Christmas! That’s just eeeeeeevil! And then, we get some crazy Sentinel versus mutant action…in space!”

Uncanny X-Men (1963) #142

Uncanny X-Men (1963) #142

What is Marvel Unlimited?
“Days of Future Past” in UNCANNY X-MEN #141 and #142:

“I remember picking up [UNCANNY X-MEN] #142—I read them out of order back in the day—and thinking that the image on the cover could not possibly be reflective of the contents. But it was. I can barely think of a scarier representation of the lethal capabilities of the Sentinels.”

Uncanny X-Men (1963) #194

Uncanny X-Men (1963) #194

What is Marvel Unlimited?
The Nimrod stories in UNCANNY X-MEN #194, #209, and #210:

“Nimrod—and later Bastion—has always been a favorite character of mine. He had all the cold mercilessness of the Sentinels, but he also had a bit of personality, too. And I loved that he had these automatic countermeasures for anything his mutant prey [threw] at him.”

New X-Men (2001) #114

New X-Men (2001) #114

What is Marvel Unlimited?
“E Is for Extinction” in NEW X-MEN #114-#116:

“Not only did this story give us Casandra Nova, but it provided one of the most chilling examples of Sentinel power. 16 million mutants killed in the blink of an eye. It was terrifying and grim and awful. After so many years as X-Villains, the Sentinels get a big shot of nastiness in the arm.”

See the Sentinels back in action with X-MEN: BLUE issues #2 and #3, available April 26 and May 10 respectively from Cullen Bunn and Jorge Molina!

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X-Men Senior Editor Nick Lowe previews upcoming art from Alan Davis and Adam Kubert

By Ben Morse

We’re still two weeks away from X-MEN: SCHISM #1 by writer Jason Aaron and artist Carlos Pacheco hitting the stands on July 13. But as pages continue to flow fast and furious into the X-Office here at Marvel HQ, it’s tough not to already be looking ahead, particularly when each installment of the mutant mega event features art by a different A-list superstar, including the legendary Alan Davis on issue #4, coming September 21.

X-MEN: SCHISM #4 preview pencils by Alan Davis

“Alan drew some of my favorite X-Men moments of all time,” shares Senior Editor Nick Lowe. “From UNCANNY X-MEN #213 and UNCANNY X-MEN ANNUAL #11 to NEW MUTANTS ANNUAL #2 and—wait, I want to just list every X-Men comic he’s done and we’d be here all day. The guy is one of the X-Men artists. So when it seemed possible to get Alan here? I jumped at it and begged and pleaded and bribed to get him on board.”

While X-MEN: SCHISM tells one cohesive story over five issues, Lowe and Aaron certainly took each artist’s particular strengths into account to make sure each had a chance to fully show off their talent, Davis being no exception.

“Once we sent him the script I wanted to get out of the way,” says Lowe of his approach to working with Davis. “The guy is one of the best storytellers to ever draw comics. He brings scope, awesome characterization and brutal fighting. He’s amazing.”

Speaking of that “brutal fighting,” much of the conflict in SCHISM will come from the explosive falling out between Cyclops and Wolverine, but also menacing our heroes will be the return of their terrifying mechanical foes, the Sentinels. As you can see in the preview pages throughout this article, Davis—no stranger to Sentinels—has a new approach to the killer robots.

“SCHISM #1 takes the next step for Sentinels in the greater X-Men story,” reveals Lowe. “But the Sentinel pictured here is a very different Sentinel than any we’ve seen. I don’t want to spoil anything, but it’s the creation of an incredible new villain who debuts in SCHISM.”

X-MEN: SCHISM #5 preview pencils by Adam Kubert

You’ll want to be sure to be the first of your friends to grab SCHISM #1 on July 13, then snap up the subsequent issues all the way through #4 on September 21, but it’s still not over there, as this thrill ride keeps coming strong all the way through to the finish.

“People are going to lose their [expletive],” exclaims Lowe. “The X-Men are fighting amongst themselves when they really need to band together. They’re screwed. And one of the best things about the fact that we’ve already told people about the split in the X-Men is that I can actually tell people that the X-Men don’t come out of this winners.

“And I know people love these pencil previews so much, I wanted to add one page of #5 by Adam Kubert that is amazing. Can’t show too much, but it’s awesome.”

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Can Cyclops and Wolverine work together against the Sentinels?

Marvel is pleased to present your first look at X-MEN: SCHISM #2, from Marvel Architect Jason Aaron and artist Frank Cho. The blockbuster X-Event of the summer continues as Sentinels threaten to wipe out all of Mutantkind! It’s up to Wolverine and Cyclops to band the X-Men together and tackle the threat head-on, and with tensions boiling one of them will go too far. Find out this July why the fate of mutantkind remains unclear in X-MEN: SCHISM #2!

X-MEN: SCHISM #2 (MAY110679)
Written by JASON AARON
Art and Cover by FRANK CHO
Variant Cover by FRANK CHO
Rated T+ …$3.99
FOC – 07/04/11, ON SALE – 07/27/11

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