Jay & Miles X-Plain the X-Men

76 – Live at Rose City Comic Con, with Ann Nocenti, Jeff Parker, and Chris Yost

Art by David Wynne. Prints and cards available until 10/4/2015 at the shop, or contact David to purchase the original.
Art by David Wynne. Prints and cards available until 10/4/2015 at the shop, or contact David to purchase the original.


In which we record our first live episode; Rose City Comic Con is AMAZING; Ann tells us how to torture the X-Men; Jean Grey needs more friends; Chris survives an encounter with an angry vampire; Squirrel Girl sets the high bar for questions; everyone has opinions about Longshot’s hair; Jeff gets meta; Cyclops is the best at fighting Sentinels; and Rachel ALMOST gets through an entire panel without swearing.



  • Cable (Nathan Summers)
  • Stryfe (Also Nathan Summers)
  • Rose City Comic Con
  • Christopher Yost
  • Jeff Parker
  • Ann Nocenti
  • The X-Men
  • Superheroes vs. soap operas
  • Continuity vs. evolution
  • Updating the Silver Age
  • What defines an X-book
  • All of our iconic X-eras
  • Close encounters of the fan kind
  • The Continuiteens
  • Marvel Girl and Squirrel Girl team-ups
  • Narrative regrets
  • How we’d end the X-Men
  • X-Men best suited to professional wrestling
  • Our personal mutant metaphors
  • Which of the X-Men is best at fighting Sentinels

NEXT WEEK: Fallen Angels!

There’s no visual companion this week, but you can see photos from the panel, party, and more in our Rose City Comic Con roundup!

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Buy prints of this week’s illustration at our shop, or contact David Wynne for the original!



  1. My brother asked me who was Cable the other day, but he stopped me when I started talking about Mother Askani. I’m sorry, Jorge, but if I’m going to x-plain something I learned that I have to be precise!

  2. Wolverine would be a good wrestler, if you could convince him to lose. At least for some of the rougher stuff. Hit him in the head with chairs all day long, no concussion. Fire, scaffholds, nothing would put him in hospital.

    He wouldn’t do well in the WWE, because he’s too short for Vince’s liking. But in the indies he’d be fine.

  3. I have fond memories of Stryfe, if only because he’s the only X character I know who managed to weaponize his LiveJournal.

    . . .well, him and Destiny, I guess.

  4. Once again I know I am in good company when the moment I hear someone ask about the X-characters as wrestlers, my instant thought is “Frenzy!!!”, and who does Rachel mention mere moments later! 😀

    Nightcrawler came a close second for the showmanship aspect. Juggernaut and Blob probably should have occurred to me first, but it was early on a Monday morning!

    Would Colossus be disqualified for being obviously not made out of flesh and blood when fighting?

    1. Re: Nightcrawler: I just finished reading Guardians Team-Up 6, where he becomes a gladiator in a showy swordfighting competition. I buy him as a pro wrestler.

  5. One of the best thing about watching That 70s Show is that they have the most supportive studio audience that I know of, you can hear in their cheers and the laugh tracks that the audience is SO supportive and happy for the characters’ best moments.
    Hearing people respond to the cold opens, to cheer and laugh and clap for you guys was…kinda beautiful.

  6. Also, as regards the question about which X-Men is best at fighting Sentinels… I think the obvious way would be to see who has managed to personally destroy the highest number.

    Now Colossus, and Cyclops and heck, Magneto all have very respectable robotic headcounts, no doubt about it, but there is another X-Team member who actually trumps them all combined I think….

    Remember “Second Coming”? That story with countless Nimrod class Sentinels coming in wave after wave from the future to kill the X-Men in the present? Remember who was responsible for stopping every single one of those Nimrods, AT THE SAME TIME?

    Oh dear now who was it again? Blond chap, good at languages I think… now what IS his name again? 😉

    (Okay, he needed help to GET to the Master Mold, so the “Teamwork” card can be played, but even so, I think he deserves a place on the podium)

    And if you count Chris Roberson’s very enjoyable X-Men novel, “The Return” as canon (Which it probably would NOT be wise to do) then a certain omniliguist did it not once, but TWICE!

  7. Other than Kestrel’s question (which sets the bar of adorable X-Questions to unparalleled heights), I think my favorite part of the live episode was Ann Nocenti. You know when you were a kid and you met that one adult who didn’t sugar coat things for you and made you think? That’s how I felt listening to her. She was so charmingly frank and self-effacing. I wanted to put my head in my hands and stare up at her dreamily as she tells us all about what the industry was *really* like back in the day. She’s like if Slappy Squirrel were real… and also not a squirrel.

    1. She is SO AWESOME. I was worried that we’d have built her up as this mythic figure and it’d be weirdly anticlimactic to actually meet up; but, no. She is in fact that cool.

      1. As much as I enjoy the sense of community when you have multiple guests on the show, there is something to be said about single guest episodes. I would love for you to bring Ann back for some undivided attention. Also, Greg Rucka, but that should go without saying.

        1. Rachel and Miles have the best guests! And yeah, nothing wrong with multiple ones but I agree it makes one thirst for more of hearing them individually…

          I already commented below on my absolute love of Ann, but Greg Ruka I also hope you bring back as often as possible; as soon as I first heard his first spot on the show I got the Cyclops series first collection. The series is everything I love about X-Men in space,but going into it after hearing his connection with his inspiration via his son as an element from your show… wow… it made me tear up.

          “Rachel and Miles explain the human experience through X-Men specific examples” might be a more apt title for your work…

  8. For the cold open: I was trying to think of the answer absurd enough to fit that conclusion and the only thing that could possibly fit was Rachel Summers. Glad Marvel felt the same way. Regarding Cyclops defeating Sentinels, I agree that he comes up with the smart strategies, but there’s also that awesome scene from X-Factor where Cyclops destroys Mastermold in a fit of rage of eyebeams.

    Good episode, this was a blast.

  9. Hearing the applause from the crowd during the intro gave me goosebumps. So happy for your success Rachel and Miles. I’m totally going to be in attendance next year.

  10. In regards to the X-Men best suited to professional wrestling would be Colossus. He even has a wrestling name he can use. The Proletarian.

  11. Hi! I have a quick question. So, after Secret Wars,how will you feel about the characters? Even if most the X-Characters survive in some way, will it be the same? Will they be the same characters that have gone through everything you’re covering in the podcast? Or will they be totally reset? Or from a different universe? And how will you feel about that?

  12. Rockslide has mentioned a couple times in continuity that he’d like to be a wrestler. He gets into the ring for a match in the Hellions mini-series.

  13. I have been looking forward to this episode but you two… oh you two brilliant people… you just had to get Nocenti!!! And meet her!!! She is… okay, ladies aren’t my thing but I love her work and her all around awesome soooo much I would switch teams! But seriously…

    Okay, awkward BS aside, thanks to your awesome podcast I learned of the “Chris Claremont’s X-Men” doc and bought the ultimate footage version and yeah it rocks but I totally fell in love with her even more and wished she were the focus. She is my fucking hero! (LOVE her comment in the docu about how she thought she was interviewing for a porn company when she got to Marvel Studios! Even my cranky hubby laughed at that)

    Is there any chance she would agree to being a guest for a very special (hopefully long) episode? OR! are there any sources for any interviews or commentary by her that might be found online or in print?

    I had/have an old “trading card” for her I got as a kid through whatever the current Marvel fan mail-in scam of the time was where they included trading cards of their creators along with other fandom junk and got Nocenti trading cared and remember part of the back of her card saying she resented being offered a Barbi comic or something and she told them to politely fuck off and have always loved that!

    Just this past week a girl in my 11 yr old’s class said she was going as Batman for Halloween and one of the moms said “You mean BatGIRL honey” and she said “NO I MEAN batMAN!” I was so fucking proud and got funky looks from the other parents when I blurted out “HELL YES!” then told my son this is a person you need to be friends with.

    Nocenti is a true inspiration and WOW! I thank you both soooo fucking much for this installment with her and just the whole damn thing. I mean no disrespect to your other awesome (as always) guests, who I also loved hearing speak, but Nocenti’s presence just made my fucking week.

    Thank you thank you thank you!

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