I was hoping, when I flipped through this, that the issues featuring Juggernaut (not to mention the indication of the cover of the collection) were his firs appearances. Turns out that was wrong. These issues were a return engagement, but also an expansion on the mythology of the character.
Still, they solve one of the mysteries in the volume, the big secret Professor X has kept in his lab and has been working on for several issues now. Juggernaut, Cain Marko, is Xavier’s step-brother, a fact anyone who watched the classics 1990s cartoon knew already (but a fact that didn’t factor in X-MEN 3: THE LAST STAND), and so his personal interest shouldn’t be surprising, but the fact that Juggernaut is otherwise just another villain that the team is defeated by and later defeats should count as a little disappointing, but indicative of the storytelling of the time.
Roy Thomas continues to have fun with pop culture, referencing several hip things even readers in the 21st Century will recognize, but whether or not writers in the Marvel Bullpen actually cared about any of it is a matter for debate, more like window-dressing is how it comes off, even in the story itself, trying to make the young characters seem relevant to young readers who would’ve needed such excuses. (Curiously, and pointedly, no movie based on a Marvel character so far has made any such efforts.)
Scott is still anguishing over telling Jean that he loves her, and keeps postponing it, even though they’re now spending a considerable amount of time together, and having jettisoned Warren successfully from the love-triangle (having now been replaced simply by Scott’s anguish and general angst). You’d think a romance so protracted would have longer ramifications to later stories, but Jean was killed off permanently years ago (unless she returns in AvX), and few writers seem interested in memorializing either the relationship or Jean (which again, is just baffling), leaving it to the past as if it’s no longer relevant.