Jay & Miles X-Plain the X-Men

334 – Genetic Nonsense

In which William Stryker is exceptionally difficult to kill; the terminology around Emplate’s powers is absolute nonsense even by comic-book standards; inkers deserve more credit; we would totally read comics about Murmur the Softpoken Mummy; Bishop comes to the rescue; and nothing really resolves.


  • What happened to William Stryker
  • Gratuitous use of the adjective “genetic”
  • Emplate (again)
  • Generation X #12-14
  • Inks
  • Penance’s original backstory
  • Pining
  • A really unpleasant reunion
  • Accent problems
  • Gayle Edgerton
  • Vincente
  • Bulwark
  • D.O.A.
  • A somewhat chaotic victory
  • Mutant teams from non-anglophone countries
  • X-characters Miles would like to write


NEXT EPISODE: ClanDestine!

Check out the visual companion to this episode on our blog.

Find us on iTunes or Stitcher!

Jay and Miles X-Plain the X-Men is 100% ad-free and listener supported. If you want to help support the podcast–and unlock more cool stuff–you can do that right here!

Buy rad swag at our TeePublic shop!


  1. It struck me that three different characters in Generation X have some kind of skin power. It’s rare for multiple team members to have similar powers, unless there’s something deliberately made about it. Was that deliberate from the writer, or coincidence?

    As for genetic vampires, isn’t Morbius one?

  2. I must not have been paying attention to one of the past GenX episodes (and, of course, had not read the series before) because I did not know Penance was going to turn out to be Monet!

  3. Cyber Force is actually Top Cow Studios at Image, though it did start out under the Homage Studio with Jim Lee. I actually prefer Cyber Force over Jim Lee’s WildC.A.T.S but probably because it feels closer to X-Men than WildC.A.T.s did.

    Tom Grummet is okay. Though, after Chris Bachalo it’s hard to imagine that anyone is going to compare favorably. It was like following Alan Davis on Excalibur. That said, Grummet is a better artist than 80% of the people working at Marvel at the the time. There was ton of horrible art in this era. Especially in the Avenger adjacent books.

    I considered this arc to be somewhat lackluster because of Emplate. He just wasn’t as creepy or “out there” as he felt in the first arc of the series. Still, this was still one of the best titles at the time and that counts for something!

    1. I’m missing something, although perhaps our hosts addressed this, and I’ve forgotten — whatever his power, is there a reason why Murmur is called Murmur? Is he really good at saying things in a low voice?

      (These issues are not on MU, so I have not read them, if this is something that is explained in them.)

      1. His mouth is wrapped in bandages and his larynx was presumably mummified along with the rest of him, so a murmur is probably fairly impressive, all things considered.

  4. Yes, Emplates “team” (“gang”? “People he’d met”?) was such a bizarrely random bunch. With something like the Brotherhood, or even moreso the Hellions, you could see the logic to the team’s construction, or the character match-ups, power/ideology wise, but this grab-bag of oddballs are just… weird.

    Which is fine, but they’re just not very engaging either: Gayle Edgerton has that feel of “Best friend/First love” trope that shows up in long form dram’s and try to make us care about it because we’re told to (See how many “Best friends she’s never mentioned before” Jessica Flertcher ran into) and Vincente only has impact because of Generation Next, rather than on his own merits. Bulwark is…. there, throw in a random mummy and… yeah…. weird.

    I’d have thought Husk would have been the better member to mind-control and send looking for family as potential food sources, given that she has a brother who is an active mutant and enough siblings to pretty much guarantee a few positive ones (This being before Icarus, Melody, Aero and… whoever else the Guthrie clan have produced, had debuted.) but if they’re giving Everett some focus, fair enough.

    Bulwark reminds me a little of Bloodstrike from the Folding Circle (foes of the New Warriors) who had odd bands materialise around his arms, legs and waist when his powers first activated (a bit like Juggernaut) but not quite so bondage-y.

    I have to say I don’t think Artie and Leech are miscoloured, mostly because both are on model: As well as being green, Leech doesn’t have a nose (Artie does), has normal sized eyes (Artie has much larger than human norm eyes) and wears a woollen hat (Artie does not). I DO think the letterer kept giving Leech’s speech bubbles to Artie though.

    1. See how many “Best friends she’s never mentioned before” Jessica Flertcher ran into

      It had not occurred to me before how much that character has in common with Logan.

      1. For one night every year, Logan visits Cabot Cove, where he and Jessica, having bought out every table in the Joshua Peabody Inn so they can be alone, share their bodycount throughout the year.

        By long standing tradition, winner pays for the clam chowder.

        They then share a toast to Frank Fletcher, the best damn handler either of them ever had.

  5. Did the discord server shut down? I’ve only just started using Discord, and after hearing them mention it on the episodes so much, I wanted to finally join, but it says invites expired when I click on old links…?

    1. Discord is still up! Email xplainthexmen [at] gmail [dot] com or tweet @xplainthexmen and Jay should be able to create an invite link.

  6. Honestly, “genetic vampire” makes just as much sense as “blood vampire.” One is getting life force from blood, the other is getting life force from genes. What does either of those things mean? No idea.

  7. Hi! Long time listener, first time poster. This episode was great. I’m going to have to give GenX a re read when I’m finished reading New Mutants and the current Xbooks. Speaking of NM, I’m at the point in the run where Fallen Angels takes place and I was curious if that book has been covered on the podcast yet? I don’t remember it being a topic, but my memory isn’t always the best so I figured I’d ask.
    I’m also curious about the discord. I can’t find any info on it outside of podcast mentions, but I’d love to join it if possible.
    Thanks a bunch in advance for any answers and help

    1. We talked about Fallen Angels way back in Episode 77 – that was a fun one! Some of my favorite of David Wynne’s art, too.

      For the discord, email xplainthexmen [at] gmail [dot] com or tweet @xplainthexmen and Jay should be able to hook you up!

      1. Thanks you so much for the quick reply and answers! I’ll be sending an email and queueing that episode shortly.

        Gotta say I really love the podcast and count the days between episodes. Thanks for putting something genuinely wonderful and positive out into the world.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *