Jay & Miles X-Plain the X-Men

16 – The Official Unofficial Not-at-SDCC (Rachel and Miles X-Plain the) X-Men Panel

In which we correct a startling omission, explore the current state of the X-Universe, and speculate wildly; Quentin Quire has excellent fashion sense; Rachel gets a new accessory; Miles goes off-brand; the X-Men are somewhat complicated; Iron Man has poor decision-making skills; Charles Xavier dies for real; Beast might be a supervillain; we briefly forget Marc Guggenheim’s first name; and the future remains a relative mystery.

For purposes of continuity, it’s probably worth noting that this episode was recorded before the SDCC Marvel panel.


  • Quentin Quire
  • Patreon
  • A startling omission from the official SDCC lineup
  • The current state of the X-Men
  • Decimation
  • Dark Reign
  • Utopia
  • Schism
  • Avengers vs. X-Men
  • Mutant politics
  • Hope Summers
  • The Phoenix/P.E.N.I.S. five (again)
  • The (real) (this time) (we think) death of Charles Xavier
  • Teenager hijinks
  • Crossover events
  • Battle of the Atom
  • Semantics of supervillainy
  • How Wolverine is 100% definitely going to die
  • Jumping-on points
  • Current X-books
  • Jubilee

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

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  1. Great podcast guys! I have to admit that just listening to you name all the current X-books makes tired and that there can’t possibly be enough good storytelling to support them all (that and Wolverine must exhausted from appearing in so many. Thats what he’s gonna die from–exhaustion, and complications from overexposure).

    A question that came to mind after seeing your post about Greg Rucka: What is the length of the average run of a writer on Marvel books these days? I understand Claremont was a huge anomaly, but as someone who last paid serious attention to comics 20+ years ago I’m just curious how often writers stay with books/characters they didn’t create.

    Much less serious question (and only kinda x-related): Given what I’ve heard from you guys about this AvX stuff, and what I’ve gleaned about the equally silly Civil War, when was the last time Tony Stark had a GOOD idea?

  2. Been enjoying the podcast since episode one. This episode in particular suffered the most from post-production. The chopped up audio segments are becoming distracting and the 1.5x speed is too much to digest the amount of information you guys are trying to x-plain. Having a podcast that goes an hour and half sometimes won’t be a bad thing!

    Related to the content, are you guys going to give context to what else is going on in the Marvel U during the same time as the issues you cover? Chronologically, Dazzler’s been going for a few months and New Mutants and X-Factor are starting before too long – and that’s just the X-Books. Didn’t know if you’d briefly give context to Avengers, FF, et. al as they became relevant to the topics.

    1. Hola, Keymaster.

      I wanted to address the post-production comment real quick, since that’s the part of this show where any thumbprints you see are going to be mine 🙂

      Apologies if I left some of the seams between pauses, re-sets, and accidental verbal fumbles visible – I try to keep them as low-key as possible, but if you spotted ’em then 1) You got good ears for a minion of Gozer, and 2) apologies if it makes you think the show is organized in audio segments that are somehow broken and then glued back together.

      If that’s how its coming off, that’s a misrepresentation of what they’re doing, and that’s my bad. It’s not really a matter of distinct segments that I take a razor to. They really are just running like a freight train through the arcs they’re covering, and often doing it off the top of their head, assisted by their trusty 3-5 page outlines.

      But I don’t timestretch or pitch-shift their discussion. There is no “1.5x” speed adjustment being applied. The show is not altered to fit within a certain time-limit. If anything, I would find it distracting if they were forced to adapt a completely different set of speech patterns from the ones they normally use in their daily lives. I feel like part of the charm and enjoyment in the show comes from hearing these two talk to each other like they actually talk to each other when they talk about the X-Men.

      If I’ve somehow interrupted that enjoyment with my fumble-thumbs in post, I want to apologize. I’ll try to keep it cleaner for future episodes.

      Thanks for sticking around. It’s very much appreciated.

      1. A note and a correction:

        1) You’re a minion of Zuul, not Gozer. Vinz Clortho is what happens when Louis Tully is possessed by Gozer. That’s a silly mistake on my part. Apologies.

        2) I don’t even think they talk that fast, personally. But then again – would you expect anyone who has read as much Chris Claremont as these two have to speak SLOWLY? 🙂

        1. Thanks for a quick response, Bobby.

          You were correct the first time. Originally, Vinz was a minion and Keymaster of Gozer the Gozerian.

          Thanks for helping me clear some of this up and realizing it’s not really a post thing. It was my assumption from early on that Rachel and Miles were trying to at least fit each podcast under an hour time limit to try to fit listener’s lunch hours, breaks, etc. I enjoy the natural banter back and forth, but (and I may be in the minority) slowing the pace of it down would only increase the enjoyment for me.


  3. Thanks for the info on the current status of the X-Books. Having been inspired since the first episode of the podcast to dip my toe back in and trying some of the new-ish releases out, I have tried out several of the main arcs you discussed in this episode. I was somewhat relieved to hear some mixed feelings from you both about Schism especially, as I felt after reading it that it seemed very contrived.

    I understand that it’s mostly business driven reasoning that leads to re-launching all new titles with all new names and all new creative teams (seemingly every year) re-starting at issue #1 – but holy hell, does that ever make it daunting as a returning reader. I can’t even imagine a new reader taking the plunge at all! But I guess it works. I hope you can update the road map again if your prediction comes true in the post Death of Wolverine books – I’ll need all the help I can get to keep track of The All , All X-!

    Thanks again for the great work, and for a tremendously enjoyable podcast I look forward to listening to each and every week.

  4. Love the podcast! It has really helped me fill in some holes in my X-Men knowledge, since I jumped onboard in the 90s.

    Question: with Guardians of the Galaxy just around the corner, how much better would Colossus/Illyana be if they talked like Cosmo, the telepathic russian space dog? I love them both already but if they had poor grammar and had all their g’s replaced with k’s I’m pretty sure they’d be my favorites.

  5. Why didn’t Jean get ostracized for murdering the planet of the Broccoli People the way that Cyclops is being ostracized for the murder of Charles Xavier? I think there’s a couple reasons. One reason is that Jean died basically the day after she went Dark Phoenix and stayed dead for a few years. Then when she came back and the X-Men were told that the Dark Phoenix wasn’t really Jean, they were so happy and relieved that she was alive, they just put the whole thing behind them. With Cyclops, it was unquestionably Cyclops that killed Xavier, not a Phoenix construct or anything, and he really has not shown a whole lot of remorse about it, based on what I’ve read. It’s taking time for everyone to heal and deal with what he did, and I think that’s totally believable.

  6. Listened today and loved the x-men update.

    I started reading x-men in May of 1983 with issue 166. Never missed an issue up until I stopped buying it around the time they moved into utopia and the virus/plague broke out. The Grant Morison run was the begining of the nails in the coffin for me(rachel, you’re killing me with the love for Quentin Quire!) I loved what You said in the episode about the mega crossovers. I got so damn sick of them in the 80’s an 90’s and didnt miss them at all. Then some shithead at Marvel brought them back. So having you two bring me up to date is nice. I did stop into a comic store last year and did pick up several back issues and I did read the battle of the atom crossover. And LOVED that you shared a Letter concerning jubilee(yeah, “WHAT!!?” is right.)

    Thanks again for another episode.

    -Paul, Old school X-fan.

  7. Listening to this episode again and I find myself searching for the article Rachel mentioned about the intersection between Mutant Theory and Disability Politics but I can’t find it.

  8. FYI – binging this year’s later, but to any interested: Pichelli is pronounced [Pee-KAYL-lee] or just [Pikelli, more or less]. In Italian, when “c” is followed by an “e” or “i” it sounds like “ch” [tʃ] in English (eg cello, cinque, cielo) and so it takes an “h” to signal it has a hard “K” pronunciation (che, pichelli, chi, etc). The same applies to “g” and “gh” (spaghetti, Giuseppe, Ghiradelli, etc). No deviations from spelling rules in Italian, unlike English. 😉

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