A new preview image for an upcoming X-Force issue shows a rather ominous message. One of the portrayed X-Men will die in the upcoming issue, a part of Second Coming. Here are some of my thoughts about the potentially doomed mutants.

Working from left to right, I’ll start with Colossus. It seems like a strange choice for me if the writers decide to kill off Colossus. It hasn’t been too long since he was resurrected. It seems cruel to take him away after being back for such a short time. One of the most heartbreaking parts of Whedon’s run was knowing that Piotr and Kitty had just found each other again only for Kitty to get lost in space. Now that Kitty has come back, I’d be awfully frustrated to see Colossus die yet again. After having absolute zero mention of Kitty’s return in the first Second Coming issue, I’m looking forward to some actual emotional payoff between Kitty and Colossus. Chance of death: 10%

Next up is Illyana Rasputin, aka Magik. I really don’t know too much about Magik other than she’s Colossus’s younger sister. From what little I have read with her in it, she seems to be pretty tough. She seems to have numerous powers, although the ones I’ve seen most are teleportation and the soulsword. Teleportation is a useful ability for writers since it gives them a device to get the mutants from one place to another quickly. That usefulness is to Illyana’s benefit, but her whole array of other abilities seems to be almost excessive. That’s why I think she may be one of the better choices leading to her death. She doesn’t seem to be the most well known or popular either, making it easier for her to be written out without a huge amount of fan backlash. Chance of death: 80%

Iceman’s a tough one to imagine dying. He’s been such an integral part of the X-Men since the very beginning. He’s also one of the few Omega level mutants and immensely useful in keeping Utopia going by providing fresh water. Of course, it’s quite possible that Utopia won’t be around after this event. However, if Utopia should still be around minus Iceman, it could raise some interesting stories in seeing how the X-Men get by without the fresh water source. I think it would be difficult for the writers to justify such a hugely popular character. However, this could be just the shock value they want for this event. Chance of death: 30%

I find it difficult to decide whether or not Angel is a plausible choice or not. On the one hand, he’s one of the original X-Men. However, he’s gone through a hell of a lot over the years, even becoming Death itself. It seems like the next logical step in horrible stuff that can happen to Angel would be to actually die. On the other hand, I feel like he’s been having trouble dealing with his Angel/Archangel transformations during his time in X-Force. Killing him off wouldn’t allow the writers to explore this story further. I think there are some interesting developments for Angel to explore. This leaves me on the fence on his probability of death. Chance of death 50%

Emma Frost is another mutant I don’t want to see bite the dust. The X-Men have pretty consistently had a telepath on their front lines allowing them to keep in touch with one another at all times. While the Cuckoo sisters are also telepaths, they’re nowhere near as developed characters as Emma is. I also feel like she’s had a huge impact on making Scott a legitimately intriguing character again. Despite my initial misgivings with her, she’s quickly become one of my favorite X-Men ever. I also thought she was still dealing with the sliver of the Void in her head, however in the first issue of Second Coming, she wasn’t in her diamond form. Maybe I missed an issue somewhere, but I feel like there’s much more to explore here. I really think there’s too much potential here to have her be killed. Chance of death: 10%

The more I think about it, the more I feel like there’s a solid chance Nightcrawler won’t make it through this event. He’s a man of faith that provides the “conscience” for the X-Men. He was furious when he confronted Wolverine and X-23 during the first issue of Second Coming about what Scott has had them doing. While he doesn’t know the extent to which X-Force has gone, he suspects that they didn’t keep to the no-killing rule that the X-Men have had for ages. Losing him could have a huge effect on the team as a whole. Writers could take the X-Men down a dark path upon losing such a beloved member, or the death of Nightcrawler could be the catalyst that puts the X-Men back on the path that they’ve walked since their inception. Chance of death: 80%

Finally, Cable is another tough one to call. He’s been such a mainstay the past few years while raising Hope. Making sure she lived has been his one and only goal since Scott sent him time jumping with the so called “Messiah.” Since that’s essentially been his entire reason for existing, it would be easy for the writers to kill him off without leaving any recent stories unfinished. While I’d rather not see Cable die, it has potential to be a great way to have Hope become more of her own character. Since her birth, she and Cable have been joined at the hip, on the run from Bishop and various other dangers in the future. If she’s going to be a main stay in the X-books, she’s got to come into her own and be a distinct character. The best way to do this would be to take Cable away from her, plus, depending on how Cable is killed, it could lead to her straddling the line between good and evil. I feel like this has the most potential for interesting character arcs for Hope and the X-Men as a whole. Chance of death: 95%

Regardless of who should fall, this event is the culmination of the story that got me into reading comics in the first place. For that reason, I’ll eagerly lap up every bit of each and every issue in this event. I simply hope that this death has a lasting and profound effect on both the X-Men and the readers.