Jay & Miles X-Plain the X-Men

As Mentioned in Episode 37 – Giant-Size Special #1

Listen to the episode here!



  • Best X-Writer – Brian Michael Bendis, for Uncanny X-MenAll-New X-Men, and general line architecture
  • Best X-Artist – Kris Anka, for Uncanny X-Men and general visual and costuming impact
  • Best X-Colorist – Chris Sotomayor, for Cyclops
  • Best X-Letterer (Now and Forever) – Tom Orzechowski, for everything ever forever
  • Jean Grey Award for Creative Resurrection – Nightcrawler (Amazing X-Men)
  • Best New Character – Forget-Me-Not (X-Men Legacy #300)
  • Best Complete ArcCyclops #1-5, by Greg Rucka, Russell Dauterman, Chris Sotomayor, Carmen Carnero, et. al.
  • Best Soap OperaAll-New X-Men, by Brian Michael Bendis et. al.
  • Silver Lining Award – Death of Wolverine: The Logan Legacy #4, by Marguerite Bennett, Juan Doe, et. al.
  • Golden Retcon – X-Men: Days of Future Past
  • Irene Adler Award for Most Anticipated Future Run – G. Willow Wilson on X-Men
  • About Damn Time – Storm, by Greg Pak et. al.
  • Cyclops Has a Good Day AwardWolverine and the X-Men #40, by Jason Aaron, Pepe Larraz, et. al.
  • Best Listeners of Any Podcast Ever – YOU*

*Details of the Corbeau Coloring Contest will go up on Monday, because Rachel’s parents are visiting this weekend. We appreciate your patience.


CLASSIC CORBEAUS (for older X-material covered in the podcast during 2014)

  • Harvey and Janet Award for Best Walk-On – The staff and guests of the Heartbreak Hotel
  • Lost Treasure – Beauty and the Beast, by Ann Nocenti, Don Perlin, et. al.
  • Sure, Why Not? – The Leprechauns of Cassidy Keep
  • Still the Best Issue After All These YearsUncanny X-Men vol. 1 #137



  1. Great Episode. I simply adore your in depth analysis of all things X. Quick comment about your 2014 SUPER DOCTOR ASTRONAUT PETER CORBEAU AWARDS FOR EXCELLENCE IN X-CELLENCE. I agree Kris Anka is amazing but he wasn’t the first to put Psylocke in pants. That was done by Rick Remender and Jerome Opeña in Uncanny X-Force. She lost the thongkini in that series. That said, Anka’s costume is brilliant.

  2. I think it should be noted that Galactus has a pretty awful hat. Don’t forget about him. Also Wolverine’s cowboy hat is pretty bad at times.

  3. So Miles pondered how readers at the time reacted to ‘God Loves, Man Kills’ and whether his and Rachel’s reactions might be radically different. I can’t speak for everyone, but I can speak for me. I have very, VERY specific feelz and memories of the X-Men, which was the first comic I followed with serious intent. I hope you can let me diverge for a minute to give some context.

    In 1978, I discovered the X-Men. I was 10 years-old at the time. In this far off age, we had no Internet, no comic shops, no huge conventions. Comics was considered a kids medium. I found an older kid in the neighborhood who was a collector, who let me read his back-issues. I was totally absorbed. One of my most concrete memories of childhood is getting money to buy comics for a summer family car trip and buying X-Men #110. I read the HELL out of that issue. To this day, that is the X-Men I think of as ‘my’ X-Men…well, with the addition of Kitty. It’s no accident that she and Rahne were my comics crushes; I was their age when I was reading them.

    SO. I say all this to say that I was very, VERY into the X-Men at the time ‘God Loves, Man Kills’ came out. And I can say that the view from the racks at that time was fairly the same to what you have, without quite the historical perspective. At that time, comics was one of those hobbies you HID after you turned a certain age. By that time, I’d hit that stage. My nerd friends and I were avid collectors (and the Teen Titans versus X-Men arguments were legendary), but it wasn’t the sort of thing you admitted in public, any more than my anime addiction, which felt like a secret shame until college. Comic shops had just started to appear around that time: it may be hard to absorb how hard it was to get comics at that time. ‘GLMK’ was not something you could just go an get anywhere. You had to seek it out. I remember being shocked, SHOCKED I SAY, at the content. We knew then it was a Big Damn Deal, but it was like reading a rated ‘R’ comic instead of the ‘PG’ one you normally got. [Side note: Walt Simonson’s adaption of Alien was one of the first such comics that bypassed parent/store radar…it was a touchstone for kids my age to bypass ‘the man’]. However, it didn’t feel like it was a radical departure, just that it was a major upgrade from a normal story.

    I harp on the ‘few comic shops’ aspect because so much of comics back then assumed readers might not get every issue. Those constant foot-notes, editor interruptions and summaries were there for a reason. I got X-Men 110, but not 111. I couldn’t find it. Eventually I got (and this is totally true) a mail subscription to the X-Men, back when Marvel offered magazine-like mailings. I remember being pissed when the arrived damaged or creased. It’s also worth noting that ‘Gl,KM’ was SUPER-EXPENSIVE. At $5.95, it was the cost of 10 issues of the comic. That sounds like not much now, but back then it seemed like a king’s ransom (and comics have become much more expensive, but are on much nicer paper stock now and use much better color processing).

    Even back then, we knew that ‘GL,KM’ was something special. It was the kind of thing we pointed people to when we wanted to say how intelligent or grown-up comics could be, how they could face real issues. I don’t think the Reagan-Carter debate really played into our consciousness, any more than realizing that Stryker was an analog for Billy Graham (as he clearly is, in hind-sight). It didn’t hurt that X-Men was, by that point, becoming the comic everyone read (or made a point of NOT reading, as some die-hard fans made a show of). It went from being the underground comic to THE comic you read or at least acknowledged. It was no wonder it became Marvel’s core until Bendis decided the Avengers needed to move back to the center stage.

    Second Side-Note: I have never felt older than seeing that two-page spread and seeing that now-ancient looking TV camera next to the cop who shoots Stryker.

    I think in many ways that it reads on two levels; there are aspects to it NOW that didn’t register THEN. It plays to broad strokes at points, but keep in mind that at the time, NOBODY dared do this sort of thing. At the time Kitty’s phrasing didn’t feel insensitive or teenagery…but then, I WAS a teenager at that point. So, it played to its readership.

    Hope you don’t mind the lengthy ramblings. Thanks for another great podcast.

  4. Interesting that you guys found Stryker to be a sympathetic villain. I had NO sympathy for him the first time I read the book, and somehow found even LESS for him with my recent re-read. If i could punch an x-baddie, it’d be him. After killing his wife, he decides that the evil was her fault and he was absolved? Ugh. Plus, when he dogged out Kurt like that, I almost chucked my tablet out the window. I don’t want to get too political or in depth here, but there’s a reason that Stryker is a more terrifying villian than a 9 foot shapeshifting, blue-lipped rage pharaoh. Guys like Stryker exist.

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