In this issue the exchanges between Jean Grey and Rachel Grey are not only cute, but mysterious as well, as if there weren't enough unsolved mysteries in this title to deal with already.
Also in this issue we get a welcome trip away from the school for young Scott Summers and Bobby Drake, as they venture into town and find some kids who actually don't hate and fear them, but think they're 'cool'. This is a nice nod to the differences in where they came from, and where they are now by Bendis, showing the more progressive era in which we now live, and how the attitudes of the younger generations would most likely have changed towards acceptance if mutants existed in the real world.
This issue also further showcases the rapid development of Jean's powers, not just telepathically, but telekenetically as well. And the big doosie, as is given away on the cover, is the revelation that Hank McCoy has/had harbored feelings for Jean Grey since adolescence.
This was a great development issue, with little action, and mirrors what Bendis has been doing in Uncanny for the last couple of issues. His pacing across the two titles is magnificent, allowing them to walk hand-in-hand, yet develop entirely different personalities and strengths.
The one tie we see arcing across both books this month is on the next-to-last page of the issue, where we see Dazzler watching Scott and Bobby at the fair from the shadow of some nearby trees, reminding us that Bendis has been doing big things with her over in Uncanny X-Men as a newly christened agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Wonderful fill-in art in this issue from David Lafuente, whose style lends very well to drawing the teenage characters in particular, giving this book the youthful feel it requires for our time-displaced X-Men.
All-New X-Men continues to roll along as one of the best books on the stands, and I don't see it slowing down anytime soon, unless the 'Battle of the Atom' crossover stunts the development of both this book and Uncanny simultaneously, which would be a shame. I really hope Bendis doesn't let that happen just for the sake of some quick crossover dollars, and right now, I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt, as he continues to churn out two of the best books in comics week after week right now.