Jay & Miles X-Plain the X-Men

341 – Rainbow Connection

Art by David Wynne. Wanna buy the original? Drop him a line!

In which Chris Bachalo returns to Generation X; we briefly forget that Mondo exists; Synch is an extraordinarily good kid; not everybody gets a jetpack; Jubilee takes a turn as team strategist; Chamber has Onslaught problems; the X-Cutioner has no discernible dignity; the M does not stand for “metaphorical.”


  • Jubilee’s aunt Hope
  • Generation X #15-17
  • Generation X (more) (again)
  • Emplates (more) (again)
  • An instance of possession
  • The Thomas family
  • Intersectional bias
  • Passing privilege
  • Narratively-determined technology
  • Giovanni the janitor
  • Synch vs. Mimic
  • An exceptionally slow-burn reveal
  • Possession as a vehicle for character development
  • The X-Cutioner (Carl Denti) (more) (again)
  • Metaphorical DNA
  • Fun times at the fair
  • Ruby quartz adaptive technology
  • Mutant names

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  1. Synch’s powers were so interesting yet, as with so many Gen X characters, so frustratingly ill defined. I like your descriptions of it though. Did they ever cover whether he can synch properly with purely non-physical/psionic powers like telepathy? I know he could fly when he synched with chamber, but that was a physical manifestation of the power.

    I’m a little surprised you both mention Mimic, but not Rogue, in terms of powers mimics on X-Teams, though she’s a thief more than a mimic I suppose.

    Not sure that Banshee’s argument was the best chosen one there “Would he have been any safer if he wasn’t being trained at the school?” Well, as he was only attacked BECAUSE he was at the same school as M, the answer would most likely be “Yes, because Emplate would never even have heard of him”

    As for M’s secret, 16 months is far too long for a repeated tease about something that major. I don’t know about anyone else, but in real time, I’d long since given up caring and was more irritated by the “This is important, trust us”, because it clearly wasn’t or it would be addressed. If it was important and it wasn’t being addressed for 16 months that’s just bad plotting.

    As for Carl not being a villainous name, I think you need to make a clear difference in principle, if not pronunciation, between Carl and Karl.

    Because if you exclude Karl too, you’re cutting out the likes of Karl “jort wearing pterodactyl” Lykos, Baron Karl Mordo (over in Doctor Strange, and played by Chiwetel Ejiofor, so bonus negative marks for excluding him 🙂 ), Dr Karl Hellfern (A Golden Age (and briefly 1980’s) Batman villain under the aliias “Doctor Death”), Karl “original Flag-Smasher” Morgenthau, and Doctor Karl Malus (mad scientist type who helped create the Armadillo, the Hornet and the Joaquin Torres version of the Falcon)

    (I confess I was only remembering Sauron and Mordo myself, but a google helped boost the ranks! 🙂 )

    Oh, and there did seem to be at least one other Morlock who used a human name, and that was Leech’s surrogate mum, Annalee. Unless, of course, Annalee has some apt meaning as regards a projecting empath I just never picked up on.

    1. Oh, and there’s also Carl “Crusher” Creel, the Absorbing Man, but since everyone, including his wife, calls him “Crusher”, maybe he shares your opinion of the name! 🙂

    2. I was okay with the way they stretched out the mystery of M. While it can be argued that they carried it a little too long, I felt it was handled better than the X-Traitor, the Legacy Virus and the assassination of Graydon Creed. There was a lot of excitement and theories when the storylines began but then they kind of just stopped being relevant until someone remembered that they were dangling plot threads.

  2. I believe the Stan Lee framing sequence is what actually directly inspired Flashback Month that following year.

    It’s been a long time in coverage but I believe X-Cutioner was used less than a year before in X-Man #11. He was a useful punching bag up till around 2000.

  3. This podcast contains unfair slander against marmots and I must speak out. Marmots are delightful, playful creatures with big, beautiful butts. In no way should racist horrible cops be compared to these majestic beings.

    ANYWAY, I feel like the Onslaught Chamber retcon could also work in terms of:
    1. Chamber seeing that Onslaught looked like Magneto and piecing something together (as that will be a thread other characters follow later).
    2. Chamber fighting back against Onslaught and Xavier having to reveal himself as a tactic against him to throw him off temporarily (which happens in the FF part of the crossover).

    Granted, these are tenuous at best…but I almost feel like there’s enough shit thrown at the wall during Onslaught to logic some fo the stuff.

    Also, full disclosure, I’ve started reading Onslaught in prep of your coverage so it’s fresh in my mind and…I actually like it still. And that may be a drum I keep hitting. It’s main flaw seems to come down to Onslaught having WhateverPowers (and a lot of the early part of the arc being Misunderstanding Based Fights). But one thing that’s sticking out to me is how much it does justify having a crossover that merges the three major Marvel teams together in a way that actually feels organic and not too forced. And, again, Feelings. So Many Feelings. (Yes, including gross X-Men 3 feelings, but its’ clear that Mark Waid just REALLY wanted to talk A LOT about the Silver Age and at least he didn’t use Prof. X’s ACTUAL ableist logic that he couldn’t be with Jean because he was in a wheelchair…not because he was her teacher or anything like that).

  4. Agreed on the above post making a distinction between Carl and Karl. The hard K really makes the difference.

    But if not, I supposed when I become a super-villain I could switch to my middle name. I’m curious, though, how menacing do you find the name Jay…?

  5. Through most of Bachalo’s career I’d agree with you, very beautiful and readable. There was a bit around the 2000’s where he lost me. The comic SteamPunk I found hard to read. He was obviously pouring a lot into the pages, but the art was ornate to a degree that left me confused on the page. Given how clear I’ve found his storytelling before and after, perhaps it was me.

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