Jay & Miles X-Plain the X-Men

15 – The Ballad of Harvey and Janet

In which we announce exciting new developments, the ASPCA should probably have a word with Emma Frost, Kitty Pryde gets a new costume, Lee Forrester is still the best, Cyclops has an octopus on his chest, Magneto has a change of heart, and Wolverine embraces transhumanism.


  • The Thomas Hardy novel of superhero comics
  • Friendship
  • X-Men #148-152
  • Unstable Denim
  • Disco Dinner Clubs
  • Caliban (a little)
  • Kitty Pryde’s amazing fashion sense
  • Garokk the Unremarkable
  • Atlantean couture
  • Why Magneto is Interesting
  • The Massachusetts Academy
  • The Persona Exchange Gun
  • Harvey and Janet
  • How to win $2500 in 1980
  • Editorial Outsourcing

You can find a visual companion to the episode – and links to recommended reading – on our blog.

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  1. Rachel, one day, you need to write a book about being a comics editor. Or it could be an autobiography. Either way, the title needs to be:

    Rachel, Editin’

    Miles, AMAZING Cyclops-esque “Previously, on X-Men to start off the show.

    RAMXPTXM for the win!

  2. Listening to this podcast makes me want to pick up a Marvel Unlimited subscription just so I can marathon through all of these comics. In the meantime, I found something highly relevant to your interests, and this episode of the podcast in particular.

    The Nerdist Writer’s Podcast hosted a comics panel about Wolverine at Phoenix ComicCon featuring Len Wein and Chris Claremont. It’s interesting to hear them go over the creation and development of Wolverine, and a lot of the points they talked about reminded me about your guys point about what makes a good Wolverine story.

    Also, Claremont proposes the best idea: the All-Dead X-Men team, featuring Wolverine, Banshee, Jean, and Thunderbird sitting around for coffee talking about how being dead is treating them.


  3. I LOVED the Firestar intro. I was a huge Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends fan as a little kid, and it was definitely the first place I met the X-Men. In fact, before I started reading X-Factor I would see them in crossovers and on covers, and I assumed the redhead (who was then wearing a red and yellow costume) was an adult Firestar, because of course she would be on the same team with Iceman. I think it was only when New Warriors started that I learned that a version of Angelica who looked exactly like the cartoon also occupied the Marvel Universe.

    It’s interesting that she and Vance Astrovik dated for years, given that they both survived such abusive upbringings, but I don’t remember that ever coming up in their relationship.

    Also interesting: if you look at Firestar’s civilian design from the cartoon, she is 100% Mary Jane Watson with super powers.

  4. Just realized I put my comments in the wrong section. Anyway here it is:

    Listening this today and you guys blew my Mind! Never realized the Reavers were the guys from the hellfire club.

    I thought I knew my shit.

  5. Are you going to cover Dazzler’s solo series? It starts during the era you’re currently covering.

  6. 152 was actually the X-Men issue that got me hooked on X-Men and comics in general. Fun fact: the Greek reprints featured back up stories from other x-titles, from different years. So this reprint issue also featured teenage Illyana joining the New Mutants. Talk about confusion.

  7. I strongly disagree with Jay and Miles about a Janet and Harvey limited series.

    For they have set their sights far too low.

    Instead, I propose a relaunch of “Marvel Team Ups”. Every month a different hero should team up with Janet and Harvey. This would put them where they belong – at the heart of the Marvel Universe.

    Marvel – if you’re reading – you can have this one for free. (But please stop killing off Jean…)

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