Real Name: Mike Russo

Identity/Class: Human alien-technology user

Occupation: Assassin; (formerly) NASA employee

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: (formerly) Dr. Doom

Enemies: Dr. Doom; Excalibur (Captain Britain, Cerise, Kylun, Meggan, Nightcrawler, Shadowcat); X-Men (Angel, Beast, Cyclops, Iceman, Marvel Girl, Professor X) (see comments)

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: The Chronological Assassin

Base of Operations: Unknown

First Appearance: Excalibur: XX Crossing#1 (July, 1992)

Powers/Abilities: Sidestep wears a vest of Kree origin that can shunt objects and beings into "stasis" until he decides to bring them back at any point in time.  He can cause an item to go into this "stasis" and leave it there for months, bringing it back in his own time only moments later, or he can shunt them to different time periods all-together.  This vest also allows him to temporally rearrange the thought patterns of those he shunts.

History: (Excalibur: XX Crossing#1 (fb)) - Mike Russo worked as an employee of NASA, cataloguing moon rocks.  During his routine work, he came across a vest found on the moon sometime before that was hidden there by the Kree.  Discovering the vest's powers, Russo took on the name Sidestep and decided to become a hired assassin.

(Excalibur: XX Crossing#1) - A few weeks later, Sidestep arrived at the castle of Dr. Doom, who was looking for a new assassin.  To prove his worth, Sidestep decided to take down Excalibur, who had recently embarassed Doom.  He displaced each of the members of the super-team across various time-periods, and then did the same with a version of the X-Men from near the infancy of that team.  He also used the vest's powers to brainwash the X-Men.  However, in each time period, the Excalibur members proved superior to the rookie X-Men, and with each victory, Sidestep placed the heroes back in stasis.  However, during the final battle involving Nightcrawler and Professor X, the Professor was severely wounded.  Sidestep panicked, knowing that if Xavier died, it would alter the timestream in unknown ways.  He brought both teams back to the current time period, letting them revive their battle, but Xavier and Nightcrawler realized who their true enemy was.  Nightcrawler then tore the vest from Sidestep, rendering him powerless.  Both teams were returned to their respective time periods/locations before Sidestep transported them, with the X-Men losing their memories of the event, as it "hadn't happened yet."  Having not only failed, but having caused Excalibur to once again realize they were on Doom's radar, Sidestep was incinerated by the Latverian monarch before Doom called forth the next would-be assassin.

Comments: Created by Scott Lobdell, Steve Lightle and Jimmy Palmiotti.

Is this the real X-Men or an alternate/divergent Earth version? Who cares. The story doesn't make a whole lot of sense either way. This certainly wasn't Lobdell's finest moment.

And no, Sidestep's powers don't make a lick a' sense.

There were about 153 artists who worked on this 48-page book, but Lightle and Palmiotti were the ones doing the wraparound, which is where Sidestep is prominently featured.

By the way, the reason the vest was on the moon was apparently because the Kree felt it was so powerful, they had to hide it from everyone, including themselves.

Profile by Madison Carter


Sidestep has no known connections to

Excalibur: XX Crossing#1, page 1, panel 1 (main image)
                                               page 48, panel 1 (vest)

First Posted: 08/25/2005
Last updated: 08/25/2005

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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