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Episode DescriptionEdit

In which the Bronze Age begins; Dave Cockrum is your god now; the band gets together; Sunfire joins the team; cultural sensitivity is not Marvel’s strong suit; Sunfire quits the team; it sucks to be Cyclops; Professor X crosses a moral event horizon; Sunfire joins the team; Ed Brubaker channels Thomas Hardy; you are probably a Summers brother; and Sunfire quits the team.

Cold Open Edit

Nightcrawler's return to life.

X-PlainedEdit

  • Bamf-Voltron Nightcrawler
  • Giant-Size X-Men #1
  • The worst hat of the Marvel Universe
  • The Mostly-New, Mostly-Different X-Men
  • A business-casual angry mob
  • The limits of creative good intentions
  • Tractor punching on the Ust-Ordynski Collective
  • The correct spelling of “fine”
  • Canada
  • Sunfire’s utter disdain for everything, including you
  • Krakoa: The Island That Walks Like a Man!
  • Characteristics of good X-fights
  • Yet another miracle of magnetism
  • X-Men: Deadly Genesis
  • Summers Family Continuity (Introductory)
  • More hats
  • The Muir-MacTaggert Research Facility
  • Summers Family Continuity (Intermediate)
  • The Charles Xavier Scale of Supervillainy
  • Relative immunity
  • Wolverine’s ubiquity

Audience ParticipationEdit

  • What would you do with thirteen X-Men?
  • Help us find all-ages-friendly Marvel Girl stories!

Listener Questions Edit

  • Why have some members of the new Giant-Size team stayed popular throughout the years, while others were more or less forgotten? Specifically, why is Wolverine so popular?
  • Hi Rachel and Miles! I'm relatively new to the X-Men. Started reading around the Second Coming event and also watched the 90s cartoon on Fox. I'm looking forward to you x-plaining all of the crazy stuff that I've missed. My question is: When did the "Powers don't affect family members" thing start? Is that a modern trope, or is that been present from the start? Thanks!

Transcript Edit

[Editor’s Note: Rachel now goes by the name of Jay and uses male or neutral pronouns. This episode was recorded before Jay’s transition. At Jay’s request, we are using the name and pronouns they used at the time when this episode was recorded to keep the integrity of the transcript.]

Transcribed by: Michi; Edited by: Bex

(00:00)

Miles: Hey Rachel, wasn't Nightcrawler dead?

Rachel: Yeah Miles, he got telefraged in Second Coming, why?

Miles: He's got a new series.

Rachel: Well he got better.

Miles: How?

Rachel: Okay, so you know how his dad is part of a group of demon mutants who've basically been around since the beginning of time?

Miles: Azazel, right?

Rachel: Right. The same guy who was shooting for world domination by fathering and then neglecting an army of teleporting blue dudes.

Miles: I thought we didn't talk about that storyline.

Rachel: Yeah but it got relevant again. Anyway, Nightcrawler's demon dad went on this awesome campaign to become the pirate king of the afterlife and Nightcrawler had to stop him so he used the BAMFs -

Miles: [crosstalk] Wait, the little blue guys from Kitty's fairytale?

Rachel: No, different BAMFs.

Miles: The ones from Excalibur?

Rachel: Those are actually kind of the same ones but no, these are BAMFs from Hell. Anyway, Beast accidentally opened a dimensional portal in the basement of the new Jean Grey school, so now they hang out on campus and they mostly just teleport around and steal Wolverine's whiskey.

Miles: Oh, those BAMFs!

Rachel: There are 2 sets - there are red ones who hang out with Azazel and there are the blue ones who are Nightcrawler's bros and those guys ended up merging sort of Voltron-style to build him a new body so he's back now.

Miles: Huh.

Rachel: But he might not have a soul, though.

Miles: WHAT?!

(00:57)

[Intro: Excerpt of X-Men: The Animated Series theme song]

(01:07)

Rachel: I'm Rachel Edidin.

Miles: I'm Miles Stokes.

Rachel: And we are here to X-Plain the X-Men

Miles: Because it's about time someone did.

Rachel: Welcome to 5th episode of “Rachel and Miles X-Plain the X-Men” where we walk you through the ins, outs and retcons of our favorite superhero soap opera.

(01:18)

Miles: Okay so today we're going to be talking about Giant-Size X-Men #1 for the most part and this is basically the beginning of the Bronze or Modern, depending on who you ask, era of the X-Men.

Rachel: Giant-Size X-Men #1 came out in 1975 and at this point it's been about 5 years since there's been a new issue of X-Men. The last issue of the Silver Age, #66 came out in, um, I think 1970 and they've just been doing reprints.

Miles: Right so they've just been you know, essentially - they went to syndication. They've just been re-running comics and re-selling them which I guess was a thing you could do back then.

Rachel: Now they're going to continue the Silver Age numbering so from Giant-Size we're gonna go into #94 but this is a standalone, this is #1.

Miles: And, uh, that could be kind of confusing to the casual reader but uh at this point, X-Men sales were not so hot. Now by today's standards, X-Men was selling ridiculously well, even at its lowest but today's standards were not the standards of back then when a lot more people were buying comics.

Rachel: So X-Men at a couple hundred thousand was one of the lower sellers of Marvel's superhero line and it effectively got cancelled. But, in the mid-70s they started doing these Giant-Size specials, including 1974's Giant-Size Man-Thing which remains the best titled comic ever.

Miles: Also the best trivia team name and the best name for, you know.

Rachel: [pause] So, Giant-Size X-Men #1 is taking this failed comic and is doing something really audacious which is basically re-inventing it from scratch. For practical purposes there are only 2 carry-over characters, Cyclops and Professor X and other than that, they're making an entirely new team.

(02:41)

Miles: So we should uh talk about some of the set up of uh how they - how they did this transition. So at the time...

Rachel: The team at this point is 4 of the original 5 X-Men. We've got Cyclops, Marvel Girl, Iceman and Angel. And Beast is off with the Avengers.

Miles: And we also have Havok and Polaris. Uh we mentioned them in a previous episode - Havok is Cyclops' kid brother.

Rachel: He sh - first showed up in X-Men #54 and joined the team a little bit after. Uh, like Cyclops, he shoots energy blasts. His sort of come out of his whole body, as a result which he has the worst hat of the Marvel Universe.

Miles: But some of the best special effects for his powers. And then we also have Polaris, Lorna Dane, who's the on again, off again daughter of Magneto. I think in current continuity she is in fact his daughter but they might -

Rachel: [crosstalk] She is right now, yeah. Um, she first showed up in X-Men #48 , she was briefly a villain again being manipulated by Magneto and jumped in and joined the team. So these 6 have gone off in search of a powerful new mutant on the island of Krakoa. They are ambushed, their powers start screwing up, and psychic contact with the Professor just cuts off completely.

Miles: Right and so Cyclops shows up uh back at the uh X-mansion saying holy crap, a. I don't have eye beams anymore - he might not have said the word 'eye beams' but I would have. And b. my team mates are all captured, this isn't cool.

Rachel: [crosstalk] Well he doesn't just show up, he actually wakes up on the strato-jet - this is pre-properly named Blackbird - completely beaten up with his powers more broken than usual, with the jet already on autopilot back to the X-mansion, and that's going to be important later.

Miles: Yeah so, very mysterious and suspicious. Where the issue actually opens is with what Professor X does next, which is to recruit a bunch of all-new, all different X-Men.

Rachel: Now again these are characters who are really closely associated with Chris Claremont who's the writer who's gonna be taking over the series with the next issue. Right now, they're all Len Wein and Dave Cockrum creations with one exception. So, first of all, the new kids. These are guys who are created whole cloth mostly for this series.

(04:27)

Miles: So first of all we have Nightcrawler. Now Nightcrawler -

Rachel: [crosstalk] Kurt Wagner.

Miles: That's right, VAUGH-ner - if you call him WAG-ner, you are straight-up wrong.

Rachel: Damn straight.

Miles: Soo Nightcrawler uh, he's one of the more well known X-Men um who's been -

Rachel: [crosstalk] cause he's awesome

Miles: He's been - he's been with the team almost from this point - he was dead briefly as w - I think we touched upon at the beginning. But uh

Miles/Rachel: [crosstalk] he's fine now/he's back now.

Miles: Yeah. So he's this blue guy from uhh from Germany and he was in the circus as the Night Crawler which was sort of his circus name that he kept when he joined the X-Men. He's a teleporter which means he can disappear from one place and go to another. Now when Nightcrawler does this there's this big BAMF sound effect that was there from the very very beginning which is one thing we'll keep coming back to. These characters, despite the fact that they just showed up, most of them, or just became prominent in this issue, a lot of the stuff about them is set from the start - there's none of that sort of like struggling to find what makes them who they are like there was at the beginning of the Silver Age.

Rachel: Yeah. In this, each of them has a roughly 2 to 3 page origin, ending with Professor X finding them and inviting them to come join the team. Those are all pretty much the characters' origins and they're all really good intros to what they're gonna be like, how they're going to fit into the team dynamics. This the intro to a sort of new - not only a new team but a newly character-driven era of the series.

Miles: Now Nightcrawler's intro I really really love because I cannot get enough of uh like sort of Silver Age angry European mobs. And once again we get another of them chasing Nightcrawler with pitchforks and torches.

Rachel: My favorite thing about this mob though is that unlike the generally anachronistic Eastern European peasantry who are going after Scarlet Witch and um Quicksilver in the Silver Age, these guys - this is a business casual mob.

Miles: Right so it's like they have these sharp green suits that are like nicely accessorized by pitchforks and torches.

Rachel: Um it's impressive, you know? They've, they've really put in some effort to put themselves together for this lynching.

Miles: So Xavier rescues Nightcrawler using his telepathy uh to stop the mob from mobbing at him and Nightcrawler says sure, I'll join up.

Rachel: The next original character who we meet is Storm. When Xavier finds her in Kenya, uh, she's a weather goddess and Storm is awesome. Her origins are really iffy and they're iffy for reasons that relate to Marvel's really dubious relationship with Africa and Africa's cultures and the fact that, for example, there are plural cultures in Africa. Um which is not really a thing they worked out until maybe the mid to late 80s.

Miles: It's like that teacher that just says Africa is my favorite country.

Rachel: And for further reading on that, um, culturally in her portrayals, she is the first Black X-Man, um Cheryl Lynn Eaton who blogs as DigitalFemme has written some really amazing articles on Storm and Storm's port- portrayal relative to race and comics. We're going to link to those. You should read them because they're terrific.

Miles: Yeah so Storm is actually an amalgam of a couple of characters um that Dave Cockrum had created. There was Black Cat, who pretty much looked like Storm but had this very feline face but did not have the cape.

Rachel: [crosstalk] Yeah she had that - she had a cat hat.

Miles: Yeah I'm not sure where they would have gone with that, I'm kind of glad that they didn't. And then there was uh th-this sort of cape came from this uh Jean Grey costume proposal which was like disco Jean Grey - it was actually kind of awesome and kind of terrible simultaneously.

Rachel: [crosstalk] It's amazing. It's a really good thing they didn't use that whole costume but it's a great cape and it's a good thing Storm kept it. And her powers were from a different character whom Cockrum pitched who got rejected for the series whose name was going to be either Tempest or Typhoon and going back to Nightcrawler a bit - Nightcrawler was - was actually not created for the X-Men originally, he was part of a pitch for a series called The Outsiders, um which was going to be a Legion of Superheroes spin-off.

(07:32)

Miles: Right, for DC, and you can see some of the original art and Nightcrawler is exactly the same character - the appearance is the same, the costume is the same, like, he is visibly identical to the way he ended up in X-Men.

Rachel: Yeah we have the fancy hardcover Uncanny X-Men omnibus which is what we've been - we're reading out of for this one and um it's got a bunch of the character designs and Cockrum's design notes in the back and we cannot recommend that highly enough - it is so cool.

Miles: Also it's really heavy so if there's like a spider, that spider is dead under that thing.

Rachel: Fuck you, Peter Parker.

Miles: Aw man, now I feel sad.

Rachel: You should.

Miles: Aww, I feel sad a lot. Next we have Colossus - Piotr Rasputin, although he goes by Peter sometimes.

Rachel: He's still Peter at this point. They don't actually figure out - they, they don't actually change his name for a while.

Miles: So sort of a Slim versus Scott Summers situation, then?

Rachel: Pretty much.

Miles: So we see Colossus first uh at home, on the Ust-Ordynski Collective farm in Russia, which I want to say over and over and over with my presumably terrible pronunciation.

Rachel: Is that your Russian voice?

Miles: No it's just my enthusiastic voice.

Rachel: Okay.

Miles: If I was in Russia I'd use the same voice so I guess, kind of.

Rachel: Huh.

Miles: So we have Colossus - uh, his origin is a little bit less involved, no angry mobs unfortunately. He's on a farm, doing farm things - then he sees a runaway tractor - Does , does that actually happen Rachel? Do tractors just run away like that?

Rachel: Don't tractors move really slowly?

Miles: I guess this one's faster. Well anyway may they do things differently in Russia.

Rachel: [crosstalk] Super Tractor.

Miles: In Soviet Russia, something something. So this this this tractor is like uh barreling towards his sister, Illyana Rasputin, who's -

Rachel: [crosstalk] She's going to become a major player later but for now we're just gonna ignore her.

Miles: For now she's just uh almost tractor-bait. Um,

Rachel: Yeah she doesn't even have a name yet.

Miles: No. Uh so uh yeah, she's just sort of playing with a doll like in the middle of a big, i-idyllic Russian farm field.

Rachel: Being a - being an adorable generic blonde girl in peril.

Miles: And um Colossus is like there's there's a a a tractor heading toward my sister. Should I lift her up and take her out of the way? Naw, I'm gonna turn into metal and punch the shit out of that tractor.

Rachel: We respect Colossus. He's a good dude.

Miles: I like that logic. His mutant powers -

Rachel: [crosstalk] He's also like sev-17, like, he's he's like the ultimate like sweet teenager who just wants to b - who - who just wants to, like, help people and do good things.

Miles: And I don't know if that always comes across in the art cau - because he-he's like this huge muscle-y dude and he-he's drawn to look a little bit older in my opinion.

Rachel: Yeah he definitely is.

Miles: [crosstalk] than he actually is.

Rachel: He's he's pretty young though, he's like, he's in his late teens. For me -

Miles: [crosstalk] He's kind of, uh, he's like the less goofy Iceman of the new X-Men team.

Rachel: He's not really goofy so much as kind of innocent and just really nice.

Miles: Exactly.

Rachel: Like he's he's sort of large, friendly metal puppy who can punch tractors.

Miles: I've never been a dog person but you're convincing me. Uh so yeah, his-his power is that he can basically uh turn his skin into metal. Now what's kinda weird is it's not just like now I'm sort of silvery-looking and really hard, like he has these sort of metal bands over him which I don't know how the hell that works but you know what it's X-Men so we're just going to let that one slide. So he joins Xavier also.

(10:05)

Rachel: The final member of the team and man, I got stuck with all of the really problematic characters this time, um, is Thunderbird.

Miles: The final new member of the team, anyway.

Rachel: The final - right, the final original, newly created member of the team is um John Proudstar, Thunderbird.

Miles: Oh man.

Rachel: Speaking of racially and culturally problematic characters, oh my god, I don't, I don't even know where to start with Thunderbird. Thunderbird is Apache, and he is um- again, the-the book we're going at has - has a version of the original design of his costume which is kind of generic and cool-looking and when they decided that he was going to be Native American, they threw on every single generically appropriative First Nations detail they could think of.

Miles: So you know who he reminds me of is um, T. Hawk from Street Fighter.

Rachel: Yeah I think they've even got the same haircut.

Miles: They kinda do.

Rachel: And his-his powers - he's super strong, he's um super fast. He's effect- he's super angry. And in a lot of ways -

Miles: Is that a power too?

Rachel: Noo not, not in this?

Miles: Okay.

Rachel: It's uh - it's uh Hulk's power. So Thunderbird being super strong and super durable and super cranky is kind of redundant to another character who we're going to come to later, to Thunderbird's immense detriment which may be why he only survives 3 issues.

Miles: He's uh, he is the first big death in the uh the sort of Modern Age of X-Men. But we'll get to that in a little bit though.

(11:18)

Rachel: So those are the new kids but we've got 3 more characters who we've actually seen before, um who've shown up previously either in X-Men or Marvel universe in general. The first one of those is Banshee. Banshee um Sean Cassidy - is a affable Silver Age antagonist turned erstwhile ally. He first showed up in X-Men #28 and reappears a few times during the Silver Age and he's basically just a really good dude.

Miles: Yeah he's one of those weird Silver Age characters where there's really nothing all that exciting about them but they just sort of happen to show up and end up kinda working out better later than they do when they first show up. Like when he - when he first shows up he's mind controlled into working for this utterly forgettable villain called the Ogre and ends up like stealing some paintings then the X-Men stop him and break his hat that controls his mind.

Rachel: He's got - he's got sonic powers, he can - he can scream, he can break stuff with it, he can - he can fly.

Miles: By screaming!

Rachel: Which is bad science but also really awesome.

Miles: Bad but awesome sums up so much of X-Men in general.

Rachel: Ah god it - it sums up so much of superheroes in general.

Miles: [chuckles]

Rachel: Um and Banshee's - is a little bit older than the rest of the team or at least than the rest of the team comes off - that's sort of something that comes up a- a few times. He's kind of the grown-up of the group in a lot of ways.

Miles: Now I feel like we should talk a bit about Banshee because of the new X-Men he's the one everyone always forgets about.

Rachel: He's not super exciting, he doesn't have a huge chip on his shoulder about the world, he's not confused and tortured. He does have a really horrible phonetically written out Irish accent , which is, as defining characteristics go, a little bit, well actually, not that special among these X-Men because we're about to jump into the age of - of Claremont accents.

Miles: When he says 'fine' it's spelled F-O-I-N-E which delights me.

Rachel: [crosstalk] Why would you do that?

Miles: You know, it's the 70s, people weren't really sure what they were doing.

Rachel: [crosstalk] Why would you make that choice, Len Wein?

Miles: [laughs]

Rachel: B - We like Banshee, Banshee's underrated - unfortunately, he's also dead.

Miles: Yeah, uh -

Rachel: [crosstalk] But not yet.

Miles: That's true, right now he's doing just fine, so.

Rachel: So you know who is, who is even better? Who is absolutely delightful in this?

(12:56)

Miles: Shiro Yoshida, Sunfire.

Rachel: [crosstalk] Oh man.

Miles: Sunfire. Sunfire is delightful. I love him.

Rachel: [crosstalk] Sunfire is amazing!

Miles: Now, Sunfire, like - we were kind of surprised as we were talking about this uh this storyline to find that even though Sunfire was only there like really briefly and does pretty much nothing, we love him because he's just awful!

Rachel: He is an absolute, unrepentant asshole.

Miles: Right so he shows up uh in Silver Age X-Men and is just like a dick and then a - a couple times later just in random parts of the Marvel Mniverse um so his opening line - this is from X-Men #64 -

Miles: [as Sunfire] Ants! This is a land of ants! Of smug and smirking insects! But soon they shall know the ominous tread of ...SUNFIRE!

Rachel: And that's basically how he talks all the time including when he's a main character. He's amazing, he's complet - bombastic, he's ridiculous. He hates everybody.

Miles: Yeah so like I think the original idea was he was supposed to be sort of the Japanese equivalent of the X-Men, like his, um, his father was uh killed in one of the nuclear blasts in, um, in World War 2, I believe, and the idea is that originally all mutants uh essentially their parents were somehow involved in radiation - they sorta stopped talking about that after a while. But yeah so he shows up, Professor X recruits him um and there's no like angry mob or anything it's just like "Hey Sunfire, can you give me a hand?" and Sunfire's like "Fuck you but okay."

Rachel: Yeah Sunfire kinda goes back and forth. I think he changes teams like 4 times in Giant-Size X-Men #1.

Miles: Well yeah there's there's this one part when they leave for the mission - the the new X-Men after they've all been assembled and given costumes.

Rachel: And Sunfire has grudgingly agreed to come along.

Miles: And then like they're on the way and he's like "You know what, screw you guys, I'm leaving!" and then like later on in the same page he's like "Hey guys, I'm back." And they're like -

Rachel: [crosstalk] Except he does that - he comes back when they're already flying there and makes them open the jet mid-flight to let him back on. [laughs]

Miles: He's both aggressive and passive aggressive.

Rachel: [laughs] Sunfire is delightful.

Miles: Yeah um so at one point he's in one - as a single conversation with Nightcrawler, he refers to him as 'misfit' 3 times in like 10 sentences.

Rachel: On one page.

Miles:  That's dedication is what that is.

Rachel: [crosstalk] and then he quits the team again.

Miles: [chuckles] I love this guy.

(14:33)

Rachel: So the last one of the - the characters that they're pulling from the - the universes is this minor Hulk villain who um shows up for 2 issues mid - Incredible Hulk - um the last time - he's a - a Len Wein creation - the last time we'd - we'd seen him, you know, in the Marvel Universe was Hulk #181, where he gets tossed across Canada.

Miles: I think he gets punched across Canada.

Rachel: He gets punched across Canada. Annnd he is a scrappy little fucker, best known for having big metal claws - this is Wolverine.

Miles: Now we - we kind of wanted see how long we could go without mentioning Wolverine but at this point it was inevitable.

Rachel: [crosstalk] Not counting the cartoon episode , but yeah. So this is, so  Wolverine is now officially here. He's on the X-Men and we will never ever, ever be rid of him. Um Wolverine is at this point, yeah he's got, he's got adamantium claws, he's pissed off, he is working when Professor X finds him. He is working for the Canadian government and Professor X gets him to come away and be a free agent. This is going to come back and bite him in the ass repeatedly over like the next dozen issues um because the Canadian government is really unhappy about it and in the Marvel Universe, the Camad - the Canadian government is super militaristic and hostile!

Miles: Yeah like, yeah, who knew, I mean, Canada. They're just sort of our chill neighbors to the north - not in the Marvel Universe, they've got like robots and supervillains aplenty.

Rachel: Canada has a real .. Canada has agendas, man.

Miles: It's true. So Wolverine, we mentioned that a lot of the the characters are pretty much fully formed at this point and that's kind of the case for Wolverine. He's a dick, but you know he tends to do the right thing when he when he feels like it. He's aggressive all the time, he hates authority, he's you know the same character that we will have for the next mul -many many decades.

Rachel: And if this description sounds familiar, that's because he's a lot like Thunderbird. They are functionally redundant at this point and again, that's gonna end poorly for one of them.

Miles: Right well the one of them without badass looking claws, specifically.

Rachel: Mm yeah so anyway back to the plot - the all new, all different X-Men train up, they argue a lot and then they go to Krakoa, the island that walks like a man.

(16:28)

Miles: [as Krakoa] The island that walks like a man!

Miles: Krakoa's awesome, it's basically like a - a big Jack Kirby monster and there's very little explanation. They're just like 'hey look it's an island but it's really this entity'  and they - that - they go into a little bit as to why but the important part is it's a big island that they have to punch and shoot lasers at a lot.

Rachel: Ah yeah, you described it as like a Jack Kirby monster and honestly if I hadn't known, I would swear that it was a Kirby design from the name to the drawing. Krakoa is awesome.

Miles:  So, yeah, what's going on, uh we find out, is that um so the original X-Men went there - you know, the - the slightly modified original X-Men with Havok and Polaris and no Beast.

Rachel: And they went looking for a specific mutant. They didn't know who, just that there was a strong signal.

Miles: And it turns out that signal was in fact, Krakoa.

Rachel: So Krakoa first s-  first sets up a bunch of traps and pitfalls. it separates the eh- separates the X-Men, forces them to fight you know, 1 or 2 at a time, shows up all of their powers and how they interact.

Miles: So let's think about this for a moment right.. So Krakoa is an island but it's also like a mutant so essentially the X-Men are fighting on the body of Krakoa to get to Krakoa and so he's setting up all these traps like how does that work? Is that like tying little Gatling guns to your finger hair or something?

Rachel: I assume it's more like a immune system. I'm thinking of an episode of Batman the Brave and the Bold where Aquaman has to go punch Batman's innards.

Miles: That's a good thing to think about.

Rachel: That's a great thing to think about! [crosstalk] It's my happy place.

Miles: So they - they get to Krakoa and they fight it,  and they do find in fact that the original X-Men are all are like, well not tied up they're sort of like uh they have these weird sucker tentacle things attached to them.

Rachel: They're attached to vines and what it turns out is that Krakoa feeds.. Krakoa, like Sauron the uh hypno-pterodactyl,  feeds on mutant energy. It turns out to have freed Cyclops specifically so that he could go lure more mutants back which is exactly what he did so they're super screwed.

Miles: So the new X-Men are here and are like whoa wait did we sign up for this? I don't know let's punch some stuff and shoot some lasers at stuff.

Rachel: And boy , do they. The fight scenes - we mention Dave Cockrum is the artist on this issue and Dave Cockrum is the definitive Bronze Age X-Men artist and he is fantastic and his fight scenes are just stellar and there's one in particular when they're - they're all fighting Krakoa um -

Miles: Oh the - the big one?

Rachel: The big one, yeah. This is - this is about half a page and it's got - it's got my favorite captions in the issue.

Miles: [as Narrator] Mere words could never begin to describe the sheer unbridled savagery of the battle that follows. So we won't even attempt it here - it's like.. wait.

Rachel: So it's a really good thing that comics are a visual medium.

Miles: But the panel that goes with this is this super bad ass battle thing that like I want a poster of it or like I want to buy  a van just so I can put it on the side of just that van.

Rachel: Oh man yeah there's there's not a lot in this issue that isn't designed to be airbrushed on the side of a van.

Miles: One of the things that took the Silver Age a little bit of time to find - they know from the start here which is - what is awesome about fight scenes? Okay so awesome thing number 1 is you take characters with really weird powers you wouldn't expect to go toge - to go together and you have them sort of like team up and thing 2 is you have a really really big thing that everybody can fight at the same time so you have these like giant panoramic panels of just carnage and chaos and violence and amazingness.

Rachel: Yeah the X-Men at their best are all about really cool teamwork. Most of their signature moves are team-up moves, you have.. things like the Fastball Special which is going to show up much later. This issue really gets that. It pretty much always has them at least paired and then the big climactic fight scene is really an everyone has to use their powers in interesting and interactive ways to fight them. And the way that they finally take down Krakoa, speaking of interesting and interactive ways -

Miles: [crosstalk] Oh this is amazing.

Rachel: They've gotten back the original X-Men who are trapped, Polaris and Storm team up, uh Professor X gets into Krakoa's head and sort of buys them a little bit of time. Storm supercharges Polaris...

Miles: And Polaris uses her powers to send this like magnetic pulse down to like the freaking Earth's core.

Rachel: Literally, there's a diagram.

Miles: And and somehow what this does is this this basically severs gravity from the entire island of Krakoa because X-Men physics?

Rachel: And launches it into space! Which is the best solution to any problem ever.

Miles: Right it's like oh your - your bank account was overdrawn? Just launch your bank into space. They - they actually describe it like when you have a bar of soap in your hand and it slips out. Like that's the way - that's the mental image that they have in the narration.

Rachel: [crosstalk] Seriously?

Miles: Oh they totally do.

Rachel: Oh god that's awesome! This is something I brought up in context of the Silver Age and it took them a few issues there to get the hang of it but Havok's powers are the coolest. Visually.

Miles: [crosstalk] Yeah.

Rachel: I mean they're not the best powers power-wise but just on the comics page, in terms of interacting with the medium, in terms of looking really rad, and in terms of looking really innovative, there's nothing that comes close.

Miles: So actually uh to briefly describe - so Havok's powers look awesome. You know what doesn't look awesome? Havok's hat. I'd say it's the worst style hat in the Marvel Universe, what do you think?

Rachel: I'm with that. What would you say is the best hat in the Marvel Universe?

Miles: That is totally Galactus.

Rachel: So they all fight Krakoa, they launch it into space. Um, they survive the resultant whirlpool which is the kind of thing thing that happens when you rip an island out and launch it into space and they head back to the institute with one lingering question.

Miles: What do you do with 13 X-Men?

Rachel: This is our audience participation of the week - you tell us, listeners! What do you do with 13 X-Men?

Miles: Hey I feel like half of these entries are not going to be fit for print.

Rachel: What don't you do with 13 X-Men?

Miles: [laughs]

Miles: Okay so this is Giant-Size X-Men #1. So this is -

Rachel: [crosstalk] And this is solid canon right? This is what introduced a new team, obviously they're not gonna go back and change this. This is one of the set in stone, fixed points in continuity.

Miles: Well it sure is, for about 30 years. And then ...

Rachel: Then, about 10 years ago -

Miles: [crosstalk] Uh, we get -

Rachel: You see a comic called Deadly Genesis. Deadly Genesis was written by Ed Brubaker, and we weren't gonna talk about it for a really long time, except that it is a straight up retcon of Giant-Size X-Men #1.

(21:32)

Miles: Right so we find out that it's not just a simple "let's get the team together" story. In fact there's all this dark-idy and terror-y doom doom doom.

Rachel: Fair warning before we launch into this - Deadly Genesis is going to open a lot of doors that we're gonna leave ajar then not revisit for a while. This is where we start talking about the Summers family.

Miles: Oh boy. We'll be coming back to that for years, probably.

Rachel: What changed? What actually happened?

Miles: Okay so it turns out you know, yes, Xavier did gather this team of international X-Men to go fight Krakoa and rescue the originals but we find out in Deadly Genesis that unbeknownst to everybody except him, there was actually a team that he sent to Krakoa before that.

Rachel: So let's go back and just look at this sequence of events. What stays the same is that he's got the original X-Men, they go to Krakoa, psychic contact breaks off, they get stuck there. But instead of going and recruiting an all new different team, he goes to a woman names Moira McTaggart.

Miles: So Moira McTaggart uh who if you've seen the X-Men: First Class  movie, you've seen a version of -

Rachel: Yeah we're gonna ignore that version. She is irrelevant to our purposes and she sucks. This is proper Moira.

Miles: She's been doing uh research on mutants in Scotland. She is an associate of Professor Xavier's, they've worked together and shared research and that sort of thing and she's been not exactly training her own team of mutant superheroes - but she's been basically taking, taking care of some mutants, doing research on them sort, of helping them get rehabilitated cause most of them have shitty pasts.

Rachel:  Uh she's - her base of operations is - is in Scotland but she's actually got a second facility in New York a couple hours from the Xavier Institute and that's the base of operations for her ragtag group of new students. She's also Professor Xavier's ex which is only tangentially relevant to this except that it makes what he does even shittier.

Miles: So uh yeah she at this point, she has 4 students slash patients slash whatever um there's uh this kid named Vulcan who's got these sorta energy manipulation powers.

Rachel: That's his codename, his actual name is Gabriel and no one knows what his last name is at the beginning of the story.

Miles: Ominous, ominous.

Rachel: womp womp.

Miles: Um there's a woman who goes by Sway who has like time powers, another woman thta goes by Petra who has sort of earth manipulation powers.

Rachel: And there's a 4th character who again you might recognize if you've seen the First Class movie because he's pulled from this story - his name is Darwin and he dynamically adapts to any threat.

Miles: Which is actually a really cool power, 'cause like -.

Rachel: [crosstalk] It's an awesome power, it, it's literally the best power.

Miles: Pretty much, he's essentially indestructible. And so yeah, she's taking care of them and Xavier's like "Holy crap, Moira, my X-Men disappeared and I lost psychic contact with Jean which like never happens so it's freaking me out, I need to borrow your, your students.

Rachel: And Moira goes '"Um what? No! That's a terrible idea, they're not superheroes they're a bunch of fucked up kids and also you're kind of terrible" and Xavier says "Well, why don't we let them choose?"

Miles: And of course, like h - when a telepath says that you should probably be a little worried.

Rachel: Well he doesn't actually manipulated.. them at this point, he basically goes up to them and is like "You guys know the one positive example of mutants you've been seeing on TV? Do you want to go save them and be superheroes?"

Miles: "Do you want to wear a X on your belt?" and they're like "shit yeah we do!"

Rachel: Cause they're teenagers!

Miles:  Yeah and so Moira's like "Well okay it's their choice, I don't like this" and it's well that she shouldn't like it because Xavier, so he does this sort of like super fast training thing where he goes into their minds and trains them psychically so it - for them they've been trained for months but only a few hours in the real world have passed.

Rachel: [crosstalk] A few days.

Miles: Um, something like that, yeah.

Rachel: One of the things that he does after that, is take Vulcan aside and tell him something that the rest of the team doesn't know. It turns out at this point, that X has actually met Vulcan before - he's met the whole team before, he's visited them a few times, but once.. he took Cyclops to visit, specifically to introduce him to Vulcan and to have the 2  of them you know, spar and hang out. Generally to be sketchy about that.

Miles: So...

Rachel: [crosstalk] Right, and and he's generally kind of sketchy about why but it's played as really significant.

Miles: So what we find and what he tells Vulcan is "Oh by the way, you're Cyclops' brother" and Vulcan's like "Wait, what? I don't know anything about my past except that it involves a lot of crazy experimentation that I've never told anyone not including you."

Rachel: [crosstalk] and maybe space. This is where we're going to get into the Summers brothers thing. So at this point, Marvel has been teasing a third Summers brother since I think, 1993. For a long long time, like any character that was a orphan or had a mysterious backstory basically had a "Probably also Summers Brother" written at the bottom of their bio.

Miles: Right like at one point they was saying it was maybe Gambit, at one point there was a character who I can't wait to get to - Adam X, the X-treme.

Rachel: He has a skateboard and he makes people's blood explode.

Miles: He's covered in knives, he's amazing. But uh yeah so -

Rachel: He's X-treme.

Miles: This was the sort of official uh declaration that this guy yes, he is the actual third Summers' brother. So let's talk about how exactly that happened.

Rachel: So Scott and Alex are orphans. When they were little kids they were out camping with their family and their um their father was a a pilot, an air force pilot and and a a hobbyist pilot and had, had this plane whi- which for some reason I know is a de Havilla -- a de-commissioned World War 2 de Havilland mosquito because that's the kind of information that I keep in my brain instead of useful stuff.

Miles: I did not know that.

Rachel: Yeah and now you do!

Miles: [chuckles]

Rachel: X-plained. And the controls go out, the plane starts to crash, one of the parachutes is damaged, so they strap the kids into one, tell Scott to hold on to Alex, throw them out of the plane, they crash.

Miles:  Exce-ept it turns out that what really happened because Marvel Universe - is that they were attacked and abducted by aliens!

Rachel: They being the parents, Scott and Alex just plummet to the ground.

Miles: Right and so they're captured by this alien race called the Shi'ar who's going to become very very important as time goes on in the X-Men universe and uh basically they're enslaved by the mad emperor D'ken, who throws Cyclops' dad into prison and takes Cyclops' mom as - they don't say it but effectively, a concubine.

Rachel:  What no one knew until it was retconned in X-Men: Deadly Genesis is that Cyclops' mom was pregnant when they got abducted.

Miles:  Right and so basically that's uh kid Vulcan - Gabriel.

Rachel: It gets even worse because then she gets killed, as does apparently her nearly to term fetus - except he doesn't.

Miles: Right. Did I mention that Deadly Genesis is really dark? 'Cause it really is.

Rachel:  It's super dark , it's so - it's so dark. God and it's right after uh it's right after all the mutants get depowered too so it's basically - it's like the Jude the Obscure of X-Men stories. Like how can we make this - how can we make these characters' lives soo much worse.

Miles: So we used to play this uh fantasy board game called HeroQuest uh that - that you may have heard of and uh there - y-you draw these random traps and sometimes you can draw multiple of them. So like um occasionally you would find that you'd fall into a pit trap and then also a shallow hole. It's like insult to to injury it's like "whaaaaa!" [flatly] "wha."

Rachel: So believing that his - his wife and kid are dead, Christopher Summers uh Cyclops and Havoc's dad gets really pissed off. He decides that he is going to escape and become a space pirate and we're gonna come back to him in a couple episodes but for now we're going to follow to what happened to that fetus who turned out to be viable.

(28:00)

Miles:  Yeah so he gets sort of kept as a servant by the Shi'ar and eventually -

Rachel:  [crosstalk] Well he gets artificially aged which is how he's only about a year younger than Alex despite you know, having been barely conceived when Alex was like 5 or 6.

Miles: Mhm and uh yeah he he sort of spends the first uh bit of his life after this artificial aging as a-a slave to the Shi'ar and uh the only person who ever is nice to him - when his mutant powers manifest, he accidentally burns her to death.

Rachel: Gabriel's had a really shitty life. And so then he -he crashes or he he he ends up on earth. He escapes because he's sent to serve the Shi'ar liaison-er on earth. He escapes, he's living in the sewers, he gets picked up by the cops, Moira comes and gets him out of prison and he he idolizes, idolizes the main X-Men.

Miles: Especially Cyclops.

Rachel:  And so after this you know this super fast psychic training, Xavier's like oh and by the way, if you fuck up, y'know that - that's your brother. That-that guy who's totally your hero who you're exc-excited to meet once is your brother and if you fuck up he's gonna die.

Miles:  Man, Professor X.

Rachel:  Professor Xavier is a dick.

Miles: So, yeah, th - these sort of new secret X-Men go to Krakoa and they all - th-th-they do find Cyclops and they rescue him, and then as they're helping him get away, they -

Rachel: [crosstalk] They-re going - no, they help, they get him into the jet and they go back for the others.

Miles: And they all get killed.

Rachel: Really graphically!

Miles: Right! Like one of them gets just like cut in half by Krakoa.

Rachel: Yes she does. It's really unfortunate.

Miles:  And so Cyclops, he's like super distraught, obviously and he um heads back to get help uh from Professor Xavier.

Rachel: Oh and note, Gabriel mentions to him that they're brothers before going back to get the others, so he knows this too now.

Miles: Just a little bit of salt in the wound there.

Rachel: It's like Oh!....Sucks to be you.

Miles: Yeah. And so Professor X, he's like "okay, uh this isn't good. Cyclops is like the most fucked up he's ever been because he just saw his newly revealed brother die right in front of him and he thinks his team is all gonna die.

Rachel: Including his other brother.

Miles: Yeah. Uh, what's the most logical thing a person could do under these circumstances?

Rachel: [crosstalk] I'm totally just gonna rewrite his memory.

(29:49)

Miles:  and we're not talking just rewrite his memory of um you know, of the mission and of what's going on, of this other team dying - so he - he erases the knowledge of the other team existing, he uh erases the fact that Krakoa was in f - did did not in fact let him go, like that was something Xavier made up as sort of an excuse to why he was back there.

Rachel: He not only makes that up, but he puts it in all of the X-Men's head during the events of - of Giant-Size #1 the idea that Krakoa is sentient and talks to them briefly.

Miles: Yeah so there's like this elaborate manipulation which he then never mentions again so as far as the reader knows in the 70s and as far as all of the X-Men know up until Deadly Genesis, you know the simple version of this is what happened. New international team, send them to rescue the original X-Men from Krakoa, done.

Rachel: Not so much. So I'm gonna go back - um, and this is, this is, this is one of those story lines that has become one of the definitive moral event horizons for Charles Xavier. And this is - I've argued before that you can make a pretty good case for him being a villain. And this is definitely part of why. Um I feel like his motifs are pretty sound - he's distraught, he's fucked up, the kids he's been raising have all apparently - you know, 2 sets of them has have have just apparently been massacred and he's frantic and grabbing at straws. But the thing about being as powerful a telepath as Professor X - and he brings this up a lot - is that he has to be basically on constant guard to not you know, just accidentally manipulate everyone he meets. And this is what happens when he lets that slip.

Miles: See for me like I totally buy that but I kind of feel that this goes too far with the character. Like this is - this is trying so hard to be grimdark that I think it compromises something kind of key to Charles Xavier which is that above pretty much everything else except maybe, maybe, his dream of mutants and humans living in harmony, is how much he cares about the welfare of his students.

Rachel: I absolutely disagree. He cares about them a lot, yeah, but he is - and especially at this point in time - he is intractably paternalistic - he is, there - there's a story later on where he - he's trying to do stuff like reinstated a demerit system t-to get Wolverine in line and he just, he has a lot of trouble with the idea that the kids he's basically raised are now adults. Him deciding in a moment of stress and pressure to take the steps he does in this makes a lot of sense to me. Like that's- for me that's totally, totally consistent with the way the character's been written.

Miles: What I kind of feel like, I mean, okay yeah, maybe - maybe Silver Age Xavier would do something like this you know he's coming fresh out of the Silver Age but uh he had developed such a close relationship with his students and with Cyclops between you know, the 70s and early 2000s. I kind of feel he would have - I mean yes it's a very awkward discussion to bring up "Oh by the way I kind of erased your mind and you don't know about your dead brother" - but it just doesn't seem like Xavier could you know keep a clean conscience and keep that secret forever and that's the part that I really don't buy.

Rachel: mm I disagree - Xavier is - y-you mentioned the dream - and Xavier is ultimately all about the greater good. He cares about his team but I mean, he's taken a group of kids and basically raised them in a quasi-paramilitary organization. And I mean, I think I think Cyclops is the definitive example of of the kid who he just completely fucked up becau-

Miles: [crosstalk] Oh yeah

Rachel:  -in in service to that dream. And this is - you know, I see this as kind of an extension of that - this is, what happens if he comes clean on this? He loses the person who he's been grooming as his successor for a decade. He loses the trust of the team whose trust in him is pretty much essential to their ability to continue to go out and fight this fight that he's dedicated his life, and by extension their lives to. I mean, I bet it probably rips him up, but to me, this is totally, totally consistent with what we've, we've seen of the character up to this point, and what we continue to see of him through the Bronze Age.

Miles: Mm-hmm. One of those little lies become big lies except now it's big lies become enormous lies.

Rachel:  Big lies become things we don't talk about.

Miles: [crosstalk] So -

Rachel: There's a lot of that with Professor Xavier.

(33:47)

Miles:  [chuckles] So yeah, there you have it - there's the origin of the all new, all different X-Men and then the sort of other secret that you didn't hear about until years later origin of the all new all different X-Men.

Rachel:  and the way that this is resolved, we should add - is that um turns out, that Darwin has survived and has has basically allowed Gabriel to survive by temporarily merging with him. They get separated, Gabriel finds out about his origin, which he didn't entirely know before - gets really pissed off, and rockets off into space to fight the largest space empire in existence.

Miles: Now that's one good thing that comes out of Deadly Genesis which is that we see more insane X-Men space opera which I never get sick of.

Rachel:  Now we've come back to this a couple times and one of the reasons for that is that later this month - not next week but the week after- We're going to be talking to Greg Rucka, who is writing the new Cyclops ongoing series.

Miles: And in the new Cyclops ongoing series, it's, for complicated reasons , a young Cyclops from the 60s era who's been brought forward to the present, meets his dad who's a space pirate and unlike when modern Cyclops met him it's like holy shit you're a space pirate?! that's awesome, you know what? My life is crazy, can I be a space pirate with you? And Corsair's like "Yeah that - that sounds pretty great." And so they do! And it's great!

(34:50)

Rachel:  Um so again that's gonna be later this month - first though, your questions! Our first question is from thenoirguy on Tumblr and he asks "Why have some members of the new Giant-Size teams stayed popular throughout the years while others were more or less forgotten? Specifically, why is Wolverine so popular?

Miles: Oh man. Um okay, so I think for some characters a lot of that can be attributed to the incredible Dave Cockrum designs. So like, you know.. characters like Nightcrawler and Storm and Colossus are just - they just look incredibly cool like you j - you want to know what's going on with characters that look like that. But more importantly, they came to be - they came to fill a niche in comics that I don't think was really as filled. Like we have - we have this character Storm who's this interesting mix of like an outsider and somewhat naive in the ways of the western world but also immensely regal and competent and impressive.

Rachel: She's really not that naive.

Miles:  Ah th-they - you get that impression sometimes. That she doesn't know about you know, little generic pop culture-y things at least.

Rachel: Hm but she doesn't need to.

Miles: Well anyway -

Rachel: [crosstalk] She's too cool.

Miles: And then you get, you know, Nightcrawler who's - and he he looks like a monster but really he's a swashbuckler, and he's also kind of pious, like it's just - eh it's this combination of traits you don't see a lot.

Rachel: They're interesting and they're complex in ways that you don't see a ton of.

Miles: But I think as far as the ones that - that don't work so like Banshee, I mean the fact is, he's not a flashy character. He's a -

Rachel: [crosstalk] and he's not all that interesting - he is a dude who basically has his shit together, he's in his y'know 30s or 40s when he - when he joins the team - he's a lot more s - he's he's he's chill, he's adult -

Miles: Right so he d-

Rachel: for his stage.

Miles: he doesn't have a lot of melodrama, I mean he does have a haunted castle in Scotland which we'll get to or Ireland rather which we'll get to later, uh full of elves. Um but uh yeah -

Rachel: [crosstalk] X-Men

Miles: [chuckles] you know, h-he doesn't have that um that sort of twisty twisty plot that a lot of the characters do, and Sunfire well I mean he's -

Rachel: [crosstalk] Well and he doesn't have a lot that defines him either - he's, he's not - you -he's a lot harder to sum up in in 3 or 4 lines.

Miles:  Right and Sunfire - I think part of that is that he just doesn't stick around for long enough - uh, same with - same with Thunderbird.

Rachel: [crosstalk] Yeah he's gone at the - he's gone at the end of Giant-Size.

Miles: Um now as for Wolverine, that is, uh, that's a really good and a really hard question. Um I mean I think part of it is okay there's a scrappy, angry dude with claws like, that's just kind of awesome immediately. He's this the sort of anti-authority kinda badass, you know always has a comeback for everybody character and that's fun, he's like -

Rachel: [crosstalk] He's fun, he's the guy who doesn't care what anyone thinks and will totally punch them if they say otherwise.

Miles: Right, I mean it's - it's kind a -

Rachel:  [crosstalk] with his claws.

Miles: -a power fantasy character. Now I don't think that would have lasted nearly as long were it not for the other side of Wolverine which you know, you don't really see much here at the beginning, but he's got a really good heart, specifically, um, anybody who he sees as sort innocent but, you know, themselves with with potential, like usually adolescent girls uh Shadowcat, Jubilee -

Rachel: In, in, we should add, a fairly non-creepy way. Like that's something that's been pretty consistent and that I really appreciate is that - that Wolverine sets himself up pretty regularly as a mentor to teenage girls and it never, ever, ever goes to sex places.

Miles:  Right so like Wolverine I mean, essentially, as a reader to the comic, Wolverine is your angry murder uncle. Like

Rachel: [crosstalk] Aw

Miles: - there's nothing bad about that. Now the character has certainly suffered a lot from overuse. I mean. y'know, how many comics is he in a month?

Rachel:  [crosstalk] Mhm.

Miles: I think Deadpool may have him beat at this point but for years he was the more egregious example of that.

Rachel: And I know for example like, I really like Wolverine as a character, I think he's a lot of fun, I enjoy him in a lot of comics. I have gotten to the point where I just sort of resent and dread him because he's so oversaturated.

Miles: [crosstalk] Mhm

Rachel: But when you actually get down to the character himself he's a lot of fun, he's interesting, he's pretty 3-dimensional and he's got a combination of characteristics that makes for consistently fun and engaging stories.

Miles: Part of that is that all of this, this certainly hasn't come up at this point - um, because he's really really old, his healing factor keeps him young looking and because he's had his memories erased, you can go back and do all sorts of crazy stuff and basically insert him into any historical era. It's like oh you know, there was World War 2 - and there was a angry guy with claws in it. Or you know, there was this other event - angry guy with claws.

Rachel:  In the cartoon - and Chris and I touched a little bit on it when we explained this - he's he's set up - he's a really good um counter balance to authority figures or he gets set up as them - and so people tend to latch onto him as the fun guy as, as compared to the boring guy, who's usually but not always, Cyclops.

Miles:  Right, totally. So our second question is from elquesodelamuerte and uh it is: "Hi Rachel and Miles, I'm relatively new to the X-Men, started reading around the Second Coming event and also watched the 90s cartoon on Fox. I'm looking forward to you explaining all the crazy stuff that I missed. My question is: when did the "powers don't affect family members" thing start? Is that a modern trope or has that been present from the start? Thanks."

Rachel:  Well first of all, props for jumping in with Second Coming because that is, that is going into the deep end um and if you're still swimming - rock on, more power to you. Um what you're talking about, powers not affecting family members, is something that's specific to Cyclops and Havok - um, they're brothers and they can um -they're they're mostly resistant to each other's powers, they can also absorb them. As far as I know, and I looked back through a bunch of Silver Age stuff this morning um, because  I was pretty sure it had had come up in the Silver Age but I couldn't find it so as I think this concept is actually introduced in Giant-Size X-Men #1 - both of them have energy based powers, both of them at various points have energy based powers that to work require them to absorb ambient energy and basically what it comes down to is that they can - they can metabolize each other's powers. Now what's interesting about that and what Deadly Genesis brings up is that that doesn't extend to their - their other brother - it doesn't ex - doesn't extend to Gabriel. Uh Gabriel's powers work on both of them. Their powers don't really work on Gabriel but that's because Gabriel's power is is energy re - energy absorption/redirection in general and the general - the impression that I get at least, is that he's gonna be pretty much immune to or able to - to redirect powers that - y'know, ener - any energy-based powers whether or not those are folks related to him. As far as I know there aren't any other characters who've - who've had familial-based immunity.

Rachel: Um finally, uh we have a third question that I'm actually gonna crowdsource to you guys. Um. We have a listener who has a 6 year old daughter who loves Marvel Girl. Um she read the First Class stories about her, she totally impressed - like, loved the character, and her dad was wondering if we could help her find some more um all-ages appropriate stories - X-Men stories in general, X-Men stories about Marvel Girl in particular. We recommended a few titles - um, the Power Pack X-Men series, a couple other things. But we're hoping that some of you might know about books that we don't or you know think of things that that didn't come up so if you, if you know of one of those, if you've got any recommendations or or even just specific arcs for really good, all ages appropriate for a 6 year old Marvel Girl stories, um please tweet them to us, uh tweet them to me at @RaeBeta or stick them in the ask box on tumblr or in the comments on our blog. We would love to corrupt this child. Into the vault.

Miles: [crosstalk] Ah, yes please. Uh so I think that's all that we have time for this week. So next time, uh you guys may have heard of a movie coming out called X-Men: Days of Future Past which is somewhat but not entirely based on a comic story by the same name. Now we're gonna be jumping ahead about 40 issues because this movie is coming out when it is but we're gonna talk about Days of Future Past and that'll also be our introduction to alternate timelines and the multiverse.

Rachel: "Rachel and Miles X-Plain the X-Men" is recorded in Portland at the Rose Way by Bobby Roberts. You can find his actual proper podcast at WelcomeToThatWholeThing.com.

Rachel: We'll see you next week in the darkest timeline.

[Outro: Excerpt of X-Men: The Animated Series theme song]