Jay & Miles X-Plain the X-Men

358 – Giant-Size Special #10

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

In which Hub & Lisa X-Plain Howard the Duck; Jay & Miles X-Plain Daydreamers; and Jonathan Hickman X-Plains his tenure on the X-line!

X-PLAINED:

  • The many lives of Moira MacTaggert
  • Feral moppets
  • Man-Thing and several characters who closely resemble Man-Thing
  • Howard the Duck
  • At least one Nexus of All Reality
  • Duck sex
  • Daydreamers #1-3
  • Never-Never Narnozbia
  • Tana Nile
  • A shadowy hunter and his ship of empty souls
  • A reasonably good Dr. Seuss riff
  • Duckworld, or an appealing facsimile thereof
  • H.E.R.B.I.E.
  • Jonathan Hickman on X-Men
  • The 7th Annual Super Doctor Astronaut Peter Corbeau Awards for Excellence at X-Cellence

(Note: Our interview with Jonathan Hickman contains spoilers for September 2021’s Inferno #1!)

NEXT EPISODE: Excalibur!


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14 comments

  1. I will always have a complicated respect Hickman for gleefully feeding X-men fandom the eugenics and supremacism they wanted deep down.

    Other writers would try to water it down-the Krakoan East India Company is written to make it clear that their drug smuggling is, like, the good kind of drug smuggling, X-Corp is ethically superior due to being run by the “most benevolent race” (Tini Howard’s actual words!), there were no natives living on all that fertile land in the Savage Land, Apocalypse is just sad about his wife and all the eugenics and genocide was really for the sake of the survival of the race, everyone goes out of their way to reiterate how it’s totally not a cult, to humanize the mutants, to add a few nonwhite characters here or there…

    But Hickman understood that, deep down, the X-men fandom just wants to read about the master race being awesome and better than the filthy flatscans. They want the inferior races to pose a threat, but one that can be easily overcome by the awesome power of the superior people working together. They want the volk to be purified of disability through bloodshed. They want a pure race, undiluted by the presence of the lesser races. They want champions united by their race to cheer for as they stand triumphant over India, China, Brazil, Russia, and various African nations. They want a few token nonwhite characters but only if they’re very old ones. And he gave them that, and so he sold.

    1. You brought your sledgehammer to the wrong party, bub. The mutant metaphor has never mapped onto actual eugenics. And while I’ll grant you that many fans have oddly fallen wholeheartedly in love with the likes of Big A and Mystique, not to mention Moira, what Hickman gave us was complex interiority and moral ambiguity; your takedown is lacking any such subtlety much less accuracy.

  2. IT’S JEFF IT’S JEFF how in the hell did IT’S JEFF Captain America/Iron Man Devil’s Reign
    The Amazing Spider-Man by Zeb Wells Death of Doctor Strange Power Rangers UniverseThe Human Target Superman ’78 exists way youre heads ara

  3. I just found out Daydreamers existed a couple of months ago. I was able to track it down and liked it well enough. It’s never going to be one of my favorites but it was pretty fun. It wasn’t at all what I had expected and that was great.

    My own personal favorite non-X title this year was King in Black: Iron Man & Dr. Doom. That one shot was an absolute delight. I kind of wish it had been a mini-series but better to have a great one off than a padded series.

    I’m a little sad Hickman didn’t get to do the stuff he wanted as some of it sounded really cool.

    And on that point, when they announced Hickman was leaving it did change the way I read the X-Titles. When I thought they were still going with his original plan I would read each issue a couple of times, trying to see what seeds he was planting, what hints were being dropped and try to figure out the twists. I’m still loving the line and the X-Men books are still at the top of my reading pile each week but now I only read them once and not quite as intensely.

    Having said that, it was pretty cool you were able to get him on the show this week and part of me is secretly hoping that his next project will still lead to the conclusion he planned. Kind of like the way Secret Wars was really a wrap up to his Fantastic Four story.

    And, finally, thank you both for another great year of X-Men coverage. I look forward to this podcast every week. Well, 3 times a month. Through a difficult and uncertain years it’s been nice to have the consistency.

  4. I could not have told you anything about Daydreamers… my loss, it would seem.

    As for Man-Thing being part of Phase 4 of the MCU, I’m going to “Umm actually…” here (At least this time I warned you so you could avoid it if you wanted to). Man-Thing got a movie in 2003, thought it never got a theatrical release and ended up on the Sci-Fi Channel in 2005, so he’d have been part of Phase… -1.5?

    Admittedly, it says in the credits soemthing like it being “influenced” by the Steve Gerber comics, rather than based on them, and the Man-Thing is much more of a “monster of nature’s vengeance” movie with no clear origin.

    To be fair, I only know this because I found a DVD of it in a charity shop a few months back and spent a fairly soporific hour and a half in it’s company. It does have characters named Mike Ploog, Steve Gerber, and Val Mayerik, so they did at least homage the creators a bit.

    The interview was most enjoyable. I’ve certainly noticed in discussions on various sites that what was clearly intended to be “alienating and contentious” has become, for some fans, “this is a great idea”, which leaves me somewhat uncomfortable. (Like addressing teams named “Marauders” after the Morlock mass murdereres, or the “Hellfire Trading Company” which, with it’s hark back to “The East India Company” is unsettling.

    Plus I really don’t feel enough has been done to address what I suspect your average mutants would see as quite reasonable problems with the numerous “deals with the devil” Krakoa has required. Sinister being the obvious ones, but Mystique (Who has never met a cause she didn’t betray except her wife)? Fenris (Basically Eurtrash who hunted people for sport IIRC)? Members of the Morlock-murdering Marauders? These seem to have been rather… glossed over IMHO.

    The Quiet Council seems also irritatingly X-centric even if some aren’t actually American. I might have hoped to see some members who we had not met before but who, say, had been important in supporting mutant rights in Africa, Australia, China, Russia, or Japan and so would have supporters from those countries who presumably also form a large percentage of the Krakoan population. And Exodus is a fairly interesting character, but why him on the Council?

    Still, I have to admit that this is definitely the most interesting the titles have been in a very long time, so…. let’s see what happens next.

    Oh, and a Happy New Year to you and yours!

    1. Of course, as near as I can tell, the majority of the mutant population is American. There are a large number of international characters but very few of them come from the same places. I know part of that is that the majority of Marvel titles are U.S. centric and that stems from mostly appealing to an America audience, but it would be really cool to see actual teams from abroad that have either similar goals or, more interestingly, completely incompatible goals without actually making them villains.

      1. We have seen underground mutant movements in other countries, like the Light’s organisation in Singapore, or Siberforce in the pre-collapse USSR. It’d be nice to see them again.

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