And, speaking of comic books...here's an unusual comic cover mural:
(Click picture to X-cess-size)
This is X-Men Forever...not the Chris Claremont ret-fest currently going through its second run in the back alleys of continuity over at Marvel, but the original 2001 miniseries intended to capitalize on the success of Avengers Forever, which was a limited series based on pretty straightforward events through the history of Avengers, making them as complicated and twisted as possible. X-Men Forever is based upon X-Men, which naturally has one of the most confusing backstories since Star Wars Episode 3.5: Why is Lord Vader Sitting in His Quarters and Sobbing Uncontrollably?. Really, you explain Widget to me, huh? It was Kitty Pryde all along? I call shenanigans.
X-Men Forever is probably best remembered as the limited series where some of the supporting characters in the X-Families were visually tweaked to look more like their counterparts in the X-Men movie. Because that gives the later X-artists a chance to tweak up the blue filter over glamour photos of salad heiress Rebecca Romjin. For example: as seen in this expertly retouched photograph of Ms. Romjin with some comic book geek or another:
And then there's this curious cover mural. You can't argue that the cover artist is a powerhouse: Kevin Maguire, one of the great visual artists of today's comics world (and those digs at comics tracers were not pointed at you, Mr. M.) did the interiors and covers of the series, but I'm baffled at the covers. It's clearly supposed to be a mural of the main characters standing against a giant "X" (rented from X-World, your local headquarters for giant Xs, just behind the Long John SIlver's off of Route 22 in Berwyn). Forgive the doesn't-quite-fit-together matching of the covers (it's likely explained by tighter trimming of the cover images than Maguire expected), but where the Sam Scratch is the cover to issue #1?
I've looked up and down, through internet and outer, through longbox and short, and I've been unable to find a matching corner of that mural for ish #1. Here's what all the databases tell us is the sole direct edition cover of X-Men Forever #1:
And here's an alternate Dynamic Forces cover by J. H. Williams, also unrelated to the mural:
...annnnnnnd...that's about it. Theoretically there should be an upper left alternate cover that completes the mural, but if there is, I've never seen it. So it must be lost to time and consciousness,
It kind of makes sense that there isn't a first issue mural puzzle piece: there's five main characters in the series, each of whom's represented on the subsequent five issue covers. So unless the first issue would be Wolverine saying "Hey, bub! I do not appear in this series!", there really isn't another character to put on a theoretical first issue cover to match the others. It probably doesn't exist.
But: if it does exist you've got it, why not take a photo or scan of it and send it in? And in the meantime, may I humbly offer my proposal for a mural-completing cover to X-Men Forever #1?: