In which Alan Davis performs his pièce de résistance; the personification of Death is surprisingly supportive; Rachel Summers is the One True Phoenix; Kitty Pryde goes full ’90s; syntax saves the world; and the first Excalibur series should really have ended with #67.
Origins of Phoenix mythology
The Phoenix Force (more) (again)
Rachel Summers (more) (again)
Earth-811 (more) (again)
Phoenix vs. Galactus
A pep talk from Death
The One True Phoenix
The dark, distant future of 2013
The dark, even more distant future of 2015
The extremely complicated future of Kate Pryde
Rory Campbell / Ahab
What may or may not be Ahab’s theme song
Moby Dick, kind of
That one time Widget was a car
Resistance Coordination Executive
An Excalibur #54 callback
Excalibur (the gun)
Kitty’s new image
How to hack the robot apocalypse
Saved by the Bell: The College Years
Where Excalibur should have ended
Tactical use of Magneto’s hat
Anti-assimilation stories in X-Men
NEXT EPISODE: The Passion of Butter Rum (feat. Austin Gorton)
Check out the visual companion to this episode on our blog!
In which you should all come see us at FlameCon; all lizards are good lizards; we recap a recap; the Phoenix force is really complicated; Earth-99476 may or may not be the secret history of Earth-616; Alan Davis takes on continuity; the X-Men fail to save the day; the Phoenix says its piece; Rachel takes a vacation in space; Captain Britain doesn’t like to be psychoanalyzed; and the Crazy Gang gets a happy ending.
Jay & Miles at FlameCon
Excalibur #51, 52, and 54
A brief history of Excalibur
The Phoenix Force
A recap of a recap
What this episode isn’t covering
The most meta t-shirt in the multiverse
Several long-ago Halloween costumes
Dinosaurs of Earths-616 and -99476
National Lampoon Vacation apocrypha
Earth-99476 and its Savage Land
The Fantastic Five
A vow of vengeance
Feron as an antecedent to Kubark
Alan Davis’s modern authorial counterpart
A telepathic journey
The full history of the Phoenix Force (as established circa 1991)
Inherited vs. inherent mutant powers (and a No-Prize explanation thereof)
The rehabilitation of Rachel Summers
Several retcons yet to come
Jean Grey’s inconsistent relationship to the Phoenix Force
A mysterious disappearance
What the Crazy Gang has been up to
The nicest kind of twist
A very easy way to make Kitty Pryde textually queer
The X-Plain Discord
Strong Guy’s new hobby
NEXT EPISODE: Cable: Blood & Metal
UPDATE: Not only can birds see color, but they can see a wider spectrum than humans. THE MORE YOU KNOW!
Check out the visual companion to this episode on our blog!
In which Franklin Richards makes everything more complicated; Reed Richards is a terrible parent; Days of Future Present is a surprisingly good ghost story; Valeria Richards is awesome (but does not appear in this crossover); everyone’s got hounds these days; Banshee is your sad cyborg dad; Phoenix has a lot of feelings; and X-Factor once again manages to up the ante for child endangerment.
Nightcrawler’s brief clerical career
Days of Future Present
Annuals, in general
Some extraordinarily specific Namor headcanon
Fantastic Four Annual #23
New Mutants Annual #6
X-Factor Annual #5
Uncanny X-Men Annual #14
Several statuses quo
The reproductive potential of Doombots
Ms. Marvel (Sharon Ventura)
A Code Red Time Emergency
One of Jay’s dream pitches
Your sad cyborg dad
The worst tea party
One hell of a kiss
Robocop vs. Terminator
NEXT EPISODE: Excalibur gets eclectic!
The visual companion to this episode will be up later this week.
In which the X-Men cinematic universe is a really mixed bag; Kang the Conqueror ruins everything; everyone wants a Sphinx hovercraft; Elle was right; and we bring you up to speed on all things En Sabah Nur–just in time for X-Men: Apocalypse!
How Chamber got his torso back (and then lost it again)(twice)
Several ways to count X-Men movies
X2: X-Men United
X-Men: The Last Stand
X-Men: First Class
X-Men: Days of Future Past
Distillation vs. dilution
Apocalypse (En Sabah Nur)
Rise of Apocalypse #1-4
Dubious survival tips
Fantastic Four #19
Doctor Strange #53
Various horsemen of Apocalypse
Age of Apocalypse (Earth-295)
NEXT WEEK: Excalibur joins Inferno!
CORRECTION: In this episode, Jay states that Kieran Shiach explained Kang in the Secret Convergence on Infinite Podcasts. It was, in fact, the amazing Paul O’Brien. Mea culpa.
You can find a visual companion to this episode on our blog!
While the Super Doctor Astronaut Peter Corbeau Awards for Excellence in X-Cellence* officially made their debut in last week’s Giant-Size Special, we wanted to take a moment to revisit them: the X-books, creators, and concepts that rocked our year.
If your name–or a project to which you contributed–appears on the list below,** and you would like an actual, physical Corbeau Award to hang on your wall, please drop us a line, and we will make and mail you one. It will be beautiful and classy as hell, it will definitely involve some glitter glue.
And so, without further ado, it is out great pleasure to present:
THE 2014 SUPER DOCTOR ASTRONAUT PETER CORBEAU AWARDS FOR EXCELLENCE IN X-CELLENCE!
Best X-Writer – Brian Michael Bendis, for Uncanny X-Men, All-New X-Men, and general line architecture
Best X-Artist – Kris Anka, for Uncanny X-Men and general visual and costuming impact
Best X-Colorist – Chris Sotomayor, for Cyclops
Best X-Letterer (Now and Forever) – Tom Orzechowski, for everything ever forever
Jean Grey Award for Creative Resurrection – Nightcrawler (Amazing X-Men)
Best New Character – Forget-Me-Not (X-Men Legacy #300)
Best Complete Arc – Cyclops #1-5, by Greg Rucka, Russell Dauterman, Chris Sotomayor, Carmen Carnero, et. al.
Best Soap Opera – All-New X-Men, by Brian Michael Bendis et. al.
Silver Lining Award – Death of Wolverine: The Logan Legacy #4, by Marguerite Bennett, Juan Doe, et. al.
Golden Retcon – X-Men: Days of Future Past
Irene Adler Award for Most Anticipated Future Run – G. Willow Wilson onX-Men
About Damn Time – Storm, by Greg Pak et. al.
Cyclops Has a Good Day Award – Wolverine and the X-Men #40, by Jason Aaron, Pepe Larraz, et. al.
Best Listeners of Any Podcast Ever – YOU**
CLASSIC CORBEAUS (for older X-material covered in the podcast during 2014)
Harvey and Janet Award for Best Walk-On – The staff and guests of the Heartbreak Hotel
Lost Treasure – Beauty and the Beast, by Ann Nocenti, Don Perlin, et. al.
Sure, Why Not? – The Leprechauns of Cassidy Keep
Still the Best Issue After All These Years – Uncanny X-Men vol. 1 #137
*Did you know you can just straight-up make up your own awards and give them to whomever you want? The Internet is awesome, y’all.
**LOOK! IT’S A COLORING CONTEST!
Listeners, while we love you dearly, we do not love you quite enough to make and mail all roughly ten-thousand of you your own Corbeaus. If you want a Corbeau of your very own, you’ve got two options:
1) Make your own, using the art below. We officially certify that it will be official and the Real Deal, and if anyone challenges you on that, we will glare meaningfully in their direction.
2) Show us your coloring skills. That’s right. It’s a CORBEAU COLORING CONTEST. Color the following image using in any medium you want: digital art, crayons, spray-painted macaroni–the sky is the limit. E-mail us a picture of your work at xplainthexmen(at)gmail(dot)com, with the subject line CORBEAU COLORING CONTEST, by January 14 January 21. The listener whose Corbeau comes closest to the transcendent perfection of its namesake will receive a physical Corbeau–glitter glue and all–to hoard privately or share with their remaining nine-thousand-odd peers at their discretion.
Alternately, Rachel made this in Blingee. Use it as you see fit:
You can get prints of David Wynne’s “Back to the Future Past” art here, or contact David for the original!
We searched for the source for this for like an hour, with no luck. Wherever it comes from, we would very much like to send it back. (Update: It’s from X-Factor #69, with art by Whilce Portacio. Thank you, Breadcrumb!)
Rogue, no! He’s not worth it! He’s not even a Super Doctor Astronaut! (Uncanny X-Men #182)
Rogue’s schtick was–very briefly–throwing silver dollars. It did not last. (Uncanny X-Men #182)
Ooh, moral awakening! (Uncanny X-Men #182)
Aw, Kitty. Also, ace tandem use of speech and thought balloons. (Uncanny X-Men #183)
Remember when artists used to draw Wolverine at the proper height? (Uncanny X-Men #183)
SUNDAY PUNCH. Juggernaut, you delightful scamp. (Uncanny X-Men #183)
Wolverine is full of valuable life lessons, a remarkable number of which involve massive real-estate damage. (Uncanny X-Men #183)
Forge’s sweet, sweet pad. (Uncanny X-Men #184)
LOOK AT THIS DELIGHTFUL GENTLEMAN AND HIS DELIGHTFUL SHORTS (Uncanny X-Men #184)
Fun fact: Wolverine and the X-Men Forge is an unsettlingly accurate Miles doppelgänger.
He’s a nice dude. Too bad he’s SUPER DOOMED. (Uncanny X-Men #184)
Pro tip: the better Storm’s haircut, the better the general state of the timeline. (Uncanny X-Men #184)
Rachel Summers: THE SADDEST TIME TRAVELER. (Uncanny X-Men #185)
In which there is a whole, whole lot going on; we continue to have no use for Michael Rossi; Wolverine should be an advice columnist; Forge makes bold fashion choices; the health of a timeline is directly tied to the awesomeness of Storm’s hair; and the X-Men get their first dark-future refugee.
Uncanny X-Men #182-188
Just how much story can be shoehorned into seven issues
A dubious Silent Hill metaphor
The people in Rogue’s head
Several profoundly uncomfortable conversations
Parallel narrative in comics
Being friends with Wolverine
Rachel Summers (again)
“Lifedeath: A Love Story”
Storm, powers, and identity
X-Men: The End
Next Week: THE DEMON BEAR SAGA!
You can find a visual companion to the episode – as well as links to recommended reading and the winners of the stealth / plainclothes cosplay contest – on our blog.