Jay & Miles X-Plain the X-Men

382 – Seven Swords

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

In which Brian Braddock has grown as a person; we remain unimpressed by the Crimson Dawn; Marvel discovers email; seven swords to two people is a pretty good ratio; everyone hates Spiral; and love may or may not save the world.


  • Where Brian Braddock is these days
  • Excalibur #107-110
  • Post-Onslaught fallout
  • Excalibur (more) (again)
  • The difference an inker makes
  • Nigel McWhirter
  • A trip to London
  • Spiral (again)
  • Engineering outfits? I guess?
  • A machine which would be Cerebro
  • Several flashbacks
  • The most meta bike shorts
  • Time-travel safety
  • Forgotten characters who turned out to be secretly evil
  • A character moment that may actually be an art error
  • Shamrock (Molly Fitzgerald)
  • Email
  • The Dragons of the Crimson Dawn
  • A ghost
  • X-folks who knit
  • Best X-guest star moments

NEXT WEEK: Hawk Talk

NEXT EPISODE: Yet more Crimson Dawn

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  1. I’ve been thanked! And honestly, massively underestimating humanity is so painfully accurate, Angry Claremontian Narrator.

    Thanks for all the great stuff!

  2. I don’t care for Salvador Larroca’s art, from extreme X-Men

    Crimson dawn suckkked.

    I’d like to give both of your luscious-lips a peck.

  3. I’ve never read these issues as I had lost all interest in it by the time these came out. Nor did Crimson Dawn excite me much which is too bad. On paper, they sound cool but in practice? *Yawn!* Though it is surprising to hear things actually happening. Both this title and X-Factor are free of any crossover obligations for the rest of their runs so it seems like they should be free to carve out their own paths. I’m looking forward to finding out.

  4. Scattered thoughts:-

    – I’m not quite sure that I’d agree with our hosts that Brian Braddock’s development has been gradual and well-handled. I think it was exactly that when Alan Davis was writing him — Davis seemed interested to me in toning down the buffoonish characterization from Claremont, while still maintaining continuity with it.

    After that? Lobdell — sudden, abrupt shift to the insane Britanic. Ellis — sudden, abrupt shift to not being that any more, and instead being a highly level-headed, sensible, and competent person who shows little sign of ever having been anything else.

    Raab seems rather to me to be working with what Ellis left him, but remembering (and probably preferring) Claremont’s Brian.

    – So, I’ve commented repeatedly on the weirdness of the Lobdell/Loeb idea of how to write Irish people talking.

    What makes “Lobdell Hiberno-English” weird is not primarily that it’s inaccurate. What makes it weird is that there was already a well-established inaccurate American stereotype of how Irish people talk and this isn’t it. It’s not so much Americans writing as if they’ve never heard an actual Irish person talk, as Americans writing as if they’ve never encountered another American media representation of Irish people talking.

    And I’ll ask again, because I’m genuinely curious about this as a historical question: where does this peculiar representation of a supposed Irish version of English come from?

    Is it a consequence of the insularity of superhero comics as a genre, what you get when people write by imitating other comics writers, and something that readers accept because they’re X-book readers and it’s like what they’ve read in other X-books? That’s my best guess, that we’re dealing with copies of copies of copies, as it were, the stereotyped-dialect heavy Claremont style of writing feeding on itself in an environment that is hermetically sealed from outside influences.

    But Raab appears to mark a break here. He makes Molly Fitzgerald talk in the conventional American stereotyped version of how Irish people talk. And under normal circumstances, that might be painfully Oirish. But after Lobdell and Loeb, it’s positively refreshing.

    -On the other hand, I don’t think anyone gave Salvador Larroca any visual references for drawing Dublin, and he apparently decided to go with “That’s the city with bookstalls along the river Seine, right? And then for the other panel, I’ll just make some #$%@ up.”

    It’s particularly funny because of how much he overdoes the “This is London, damn it! Look, Trafalgar Square!” stuff with Meggan and Brian.

    -The whole notion of Dublin having the best hairdresser in Europe, though — that’s interesting from my admittedly parochial perspective. I’d be willing to bet that no-one would have found that to be an idea that one could get away with in 1987. Ireland was a couple of years into the boom by 1997, and this is arguably a sign of how change in the real world was penetrating even into the self-contained consciousness of superhero comics.

  5. Immediately found myself dollar bin diving for these to see those fun Larroca casual outfits.
    This issue was a good reminder it made sense for Wolfsbane and Colossus to be on a Euro-team, wish they had fulfilled that new mission statement a bit more. Decent rescue premise-like Marauders now!

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