Jay & Miles X-Plain the X-Men

233 – Electromagnetism Unlimited

X-Men Unlimited.

In which X-Men Unlimited begins; Cyclops’s powers remain wildly inconsistent; electromagnetic fields are the gamma rays of the early ‘90s; Siena Blaze should probably take some science courses; Magneto is a complex dude; and the Marvel Universe could really use adequate mental healthcare.


  • Tradeoffs
  • X-Men Unlimited
  • Several other Unlimited series
  • The Gregorian calendar
  • Chris Bachalo
  • Storm’s-eye view
  • Electromagnetic fields
  • Diverse approaches to problem-solving
  • One of Cyclops’s many issues
  • An unfortunate encounter with Magneto
  • A memorial
  • Magneto, his origins, and his many pseudonyms
  • The Victor Von Doom paradox
  • A terrible plan
  • Physical mannerisms in comics
  • An unfortunate encounter with Magneto, revisited
  • Mental healthcare in the Marvel Universe
  • What happened to the Soul Sword


Special thanks to consulting X-Pert @beccastareyes!

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  1. I too love Star Wars Legacy, though I wouldn’t recommend it to new SW fans. It’s heavily rooted in the old EU especially Ostrander and Duursema’s previous SW comic, Republic.

  2. I really like Siena Blaze, but mostly for a combination of reasons Miles has identified in episodes past – cool trading card and cool costume look. She’s not showing a tonne of skin, which is nice, and I thought not having a codename was kinda cool too. I genuinely like the Upstarts idea – though mostly not the execution – and I kinda wish Blaze had managed to have some better comics to be in.

    1. Okay, until now, I thought I was the only person who thought Sienna Blaze had possibility due to her cool looks & pithy name. I firmly believe any character can be reworked to be interesting, even ones I loathe in their current incarnations, and a woman who’s a destructive nihilist cuz she saw a glimpse of her awful future she can’t think of any way to change definitely has possibility.

  3. I remember enjoying reading X-Men Unlimited when it came out. Will always remember it as the issue where Scott Lobdell re-contextualized the notion that Storm was “immune to the weather.” I liked his explanation of this. 🙂

    Fun early art by Bachalo!

  4. Some scattered thoughts:

    – Both stories were good, but I don’t know that either of them needed to be that long. E.g. all the stuff about exactly how Adrian Eiskalt (“Eiskalt” – really) was going to wear this suit, and use this gun. That felt like unnecessary padding.

    – I think the main tell in the comic that the Romani origin for Magneto is intended to exclude Jewishness is that Haller pretty clearly attributes his being sent to Auschwitz to the fact that he was Romani and if he also had Jewish ancestry, you’d expect her to mention it as a factor. Plus the way in which Haller emphasizes that it wasn’t only Jews who died in the Holocaust.

    – It’s worse than Ute being a woman’s name. It doesn’t have an umlaut on the e. Because it’s German, and you don’t put umlauts on e’s. In other news, Baron Zemo’s name is pronounced “Tsaymo.”

    – “I thought that dark lonely ocean of loss was mine to dive into.” OK, Mr. Nicieza, before this you were imitating Claremont’s dialogue. Now you’re just taking the [expletive deleted].

  5. I always took it as, The beam is 100% of the time always shooting out of his eyes when his eyelids are open, regardless of what is being presently worn over his eyes

    1. The comics on Marvel Unlimited have poorer image quality, then the ones you guy as a single digital issue. if you compare the same issue, ull see what i mean. the text is a little fuzzy.
      example: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1lYiUFJlEdyzuJPMA_Ge-j81DV_pNcc2F?usp=sharing
      I emailed Marvel and they said:
      Dear Pat,

      Thank you for contacting Marvel’s Online Support services.

      We’ve upgraded the authoring process and the reader, so you should be seeing improvements in both visual clarity and quality of the guided view in the coming months. It will take time for us to go back through all of the comics in the library, but that’s our goal.

      Please let us know if you have any further questions.

      Best regards,
      -Marvel Customer Care

  6. I gives me genuine pain to bring the news that Bova is deceased in the MU (Well, for now).

    Ms Bova Ayrshire was killed by the High Evolutionary (that unmitigated ass) at the start of New Warriors Volume 5, when he was on a “Oh crap! Zuras of the Eternals has told me that the Celestial Host is coming and we need to get rid of everyone/thing which is not 100% plain ordinary homo sapiens” (Spoiler: They weren’t and Zuras was just being even more of an ass than Hi Evo. The New Men of Wundagore were the first to be disposed of.

    I also love her entry on the Marvel fandom page under “Powers”;

    “Bova’s bovine physiology gives her a very slight degree of enhanced strength, as well as a dense frame, a pair of solid horns on her head, and a ruminant digestive system.”

  7. Oh yeah, the discussion about how dangerous Magneto could be reminds me that there’s another mutant who does this a little later on, when Warren Ellis writes Excalibur, he uses Meggan’s active elemental powers a lot more than previous writers did. in one story she tells a pilot who’s attacking the team, as she flies after them that she COULD, if she wanted to, remove the electricity from their brains, but prefers to take the rather less (probably) lethal approach of removing the electricity from the planes systems.

  8. Concerning names…I work in a local government benefits office and the names in comics aren’t that outlandish. I’d be comfortable with a ‘I know you think you’re funny, but…’ law being passed in the UK. You should be able to call yourself what you please as an adult, but parents should have some limits.

  9. I hope you guys know that Duursema was the actual artist of the 90s AD&D comic. I loved her artwork, even though she would be so much better by the time of Legacy.
    That said, the AD&D comic was some of the best stuff ever. Vajra Valmeyjar is still my inspiration for most awesome warrior.

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