Roughly a zillion years ago, we asked you to send in your ideas for public service announcements–serious or satirical–starring the X-Men. At long last, we’ve sorted out our favorites and collected them here for your exclusive edutainment!
Ready to learn about graduate student funding, traffic safety, image attribution, and parenting with the X-Men? READ ON!
Speaking of the new stuff, if you’re reading this, it means that we are now at our fancy new URL, xplainthexmen.com! (We almost went with JayandMiles.com, but someone pointed out that we’d have to change it again in a dozen or so years when the Littlest X-Perts come of age and take over, so that just redirects here.) In theory, all of the old links will keep working, but here’s a quick-reference list of where to find what:
iTunes should be showing the correct title now or within the next few days; and your feeds should update automatically.
We’re still working on getting Patreon and Redbubble updated; we’ll let you know as soon as those are moved over (for now, they’re right where they’ve always been).
Obviously, this is a big shift, and it’s involved a lot of coordination, so please pardon any hiccoughs in the days ahead; and let us know if anything’s running wrong, or if you notice the wrong name anywhere!
Apparently we’re all about the High Evolutionary today, starting with this great piece of fan art–riffing on our Very Sound Theory on the actual implications of his name–from artist Kyle Latino:
We had so much fun writing the High Evolutionary Mad-Libs for the Episode 96 cold open that we decided to make a playable version! Try your hand at concocting a new secret origin for the only supervillain so bad at his job that Apocalypse had to stage an intervention–and share your horrifying new canons in the comments!
We’ve been raving for ages about director Arvin Bautista’s spectacular X-Men fan films: the Dazzler music video that first made the rounds back in 2014; and the follow-up, featuring Lila Cheney, which dropped last week. This weekend, we finally got sat down with Bautista himself to talk about adaptation anxiety, straddling the fan/pro divide, and what it took to bring Alison Blaire and Lila Cheney to life.
In Episode 63, we asked you to design the New Mutants some alternate graduation costumes, since the canonical ones… left a bit to be desired. And dang, did you deliver! We’ve collected the first batch here, but we’ll be putting up another late this or early next week (or both, depending on volume), so you’ve still got time to get yours in! (E-mail to xplainthexmen(at)gmail(dot)com, with the subject line GRADUATION.)
Magik, by Nelson Hernandez. (TRUE FACT: Superheroes in jackets are the best superheroes.)
Magma, by Kate Schwarz
Wolfsbane, by Scott Sheldon
Mirage, by Casey Cookson. Casey specifies: “Dani’s “X” is actually the flag for the Northern Cheyenne, I couldn’t find out if she is actually Northern or if she is Southern Cheyenne. If you or your viewers know I’d love to get feedback so I can fix it.”
Magik, by Casey Cookson.
Warlock and Cypher, by Casey Cookson.
The full team, by Mike Becker. I particularly love the many subtle nods to future teams and costumes!
In Episode 31, we dropped the idea of Wolverine running an advice column, and not one but two of you magical folk sent us your versions of what that would look like!
SPEAKING OF ART! When we were uploading David Wynne’s gorgeous Demon Bear for the print of the week, Redbubble suddenly confronted us with a possibility we had never previously considered but found absolutely hilarious: Demon Bear travel mugs. I mean, look at this:
After a hurried twitter conference with David, we decided those should probably be a thing, and now they are. (Both prints and mugs will be up at the shop until Sunday, November 30, at which point the prints and probably the mugs will disappear forever.)
As some of you no doubt remember from Episode 7 (waaaaaaay back when), my con sketchbook’stheme is Cyclops Has a Good Day. While the sketchbook itself is purely physical media, you splendid folks will once in a while e-mail me a digital entry, and they are universally delightful.
This week’s comes from Jenny Yule, who has worked out what I am pretty sure is the absolute best recreational use of Cyclops’s powers AND gave me a total nostalgia rush for the weird old Ambroisia game Harry the Handsome Executive, which I would now very much like to see given a superhero revamp. BEHOLD:
Last week, we challenged you to help us revive that awesome ’80s celebration of Kitty Pryde’s Spectacular Revolving Wardrobe, Kitty’s Kostume Korner! Much as we love the classic yellow-and-black she’s been sporting for the last decade-plus, we remember when Kitty reinvented her costume twice an issue–and you sent us some great revamps in that tradition. Click through for the full lineup!
Rick Jones (who assures us that, yes, it’s his real name, and he’s heard every possible joke already), designed this modern-minimal costume using Hero Factory.
Jenny Peeters harkens back to one of our favorite one-off Kitty costumes with a roller derby twist–and notes that phasing would make Kitty one hell of a jammer!
Mike Becker goes for a lower-key remix of some traditional X-elements. We dig, especially the short sleeves and the rockin’ yellow kicks.
Michael Kappeler writes, “I figured that with Storm rocking the punk look, Kitty would follow up by going through a goth … phase … (I had to).” SLOW CLAP.
Eric Patton imagines an 80s-era Kitty playing homage to some of her own favorite superheroes with this x-lady mashup costume.
An additional note regarding fan art, costume design, and sourcing: There’s one image we didn’t run, because it was done directly on unsourced art by another artist. We totally get that sometimes that’s the simplest way to do a design, and the person who submitted it was in no way attempting to claim the original art or plagiarize–but if you’re submitting a piece like that, the source needs to be noted and visible in the image–and, ideally, used with the permission of the original artist–for us to run it on this blog, i.e. “Recolored from [artist] design” or “drawn over art by [artist].”
If–like us–you’re someone whose costume design aspirations outpace your drawing skills, we also recommend resources like Hero Factory (again, we recommend citing ’em if you’re using ’em, as Rick did above).