Uncanny X-men 18
Oh how the mighty have fallen. In this issue, we witness the corrupting power of the Phoenix. I was especially touched by the scene with Colossus and Magik. After Piotr bares his soul to his sister, confessing the rage and bloodlust he experienced while possessed by the Phoenix, Illyana reveals her malicious (soul-less, is probably more apt) intentions of making her brother undergo the feeling of irreversible damnation so he could finally understand what she constantly goes through.
This scene, for me, was even better than the Scott-and- Emma-having-dinner-in-their-minds scene where it's apparent that the Phoenix has already pulled them so far away from their humanity, that they bat not an eyelash when dining on memories and "blood." And, of course, surprise surprise, my heart melted when Emma confessed her mental affair with Namor. I just hope to God that regardless of how much of a tramp she is, Scott stays with her forever.
I was really glad that this issue came out at the same time AvX#11 did because I after reading AvX, I was extremely sore about how Emma and Scott were depicted. In fact, I was really upset about how all the X-men were depicted in that issue. It just didn't feel genuine. What did feel genuine were the battle scenes in this issue (in the background of the Emma/Scott scene.) Garney shows beams and fire clashing, smashing and shooting, and lots of superheroes attacking the remainder of the Phoenix 5 at once. That, my friends, is how an epic battle should be.
THE BOTTOM LINE:: Solid, consistent work by Gillen. Does more than supplement AvX.