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Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Shameless Pondering Over a Comic I Haven't Read...

Over on kali921's livejournal, on a post entitled Marvel & Interchangeable Female Characters, Summers Edition she discusses a recent event from X-Factor which kind of puzzles me. As I don't really want to go trolling the comment section of someone who's engaging in their perfectly justified right to vent, I thought I'd blog about it here.

I've quoted the pertinent point:

Suffice it to say that I'm extremely disenchanted with David, X-Factor, and this is the final straw.

Yes, that's right. Scott and Emma have a dystopianfuture!AU kid.

We already have three awesome dystopianfuture!AU Summers kids, that being Nate Grey, Nathan Grey, and Rachel Grey.

I'm going to quote the very awesome [info]aj's thoughts on this:

"WHY THE EVER LOVING FUCK did you kill off Jean if all you wanted to fucking do was replace her with a blonde. There is such a goddamn thing as hair dye, you unmitigated asswipes. You know what!? I would malign your ancestry, Marvel PTB, but that would just be completely inadequate and unfair to people who can't defend themselves.

God fucking damnit.

And the worst part is that you're doing everything you can to make Emma Jean. You are doing a violent disservice to both fucking characters and basically telling me that women don't matter because they're replaceable by some other set of boobs in hot pants who is 'owning' her sexuality by dressing like a goddamn lingerie model."

Okay, I'm going to admit I haven't read the issue. Peter David is not usually to my taste and there's no character there that I particularly adore enough to buy the book. But there's a hole in this logic somewhere for me.

First of all, isn't the whole point of Cable*, Nate Grey and Rachel Summers that they're from dystopian alternate futures?

And the whole thing about alternate futures is that occasionally you see the results of different match-ups for characters. Given how tied in Scott Summers is with dystopian off-spring, it seems only natural to me that at some point he'd have a dystopian alternate future child with Emma Frost.

Honestly, I'm surprised he doesn't have an alternate future child with WOLVERINE somewhere in the Marvel universe.**

*Isn't Cable Madelyne Pryor's kid anyway? That kind of puts a wrench in the Emma=Jean thing, I'd think.

**I would totally read this comic.

I do acknowledge that the plotline isn't terribly original, but I don't think it marks anyone "turning Emma into Jean". For one thing, if they really wanted to replace Jean with Emma, why bother creating a NEW alternate future kid. Just retcon her INTO the timeline as the character's mother. Maybe her genes somehow got included in the mix. Or she was secretly an Askani. Or she adopted Rachel when she was five. Something like that. Yeah, they're all stupid ways to do it. But honestly, it's comics. Much as I love Marvel and DC, we've all seen them do stupider things.

Creating a NEW child, seems to me, to be a fairly clear way of distinguishing her from Jean. Emma Frost is obviously not going to react in the same way Jean is. This new child is invariably going to end up interacting with and contrasting with the other kids. This is setting her apart from Jean and adding an interesting wrinkle with Jean's upcoming nine-millionth resurrection.

We all know it's coming.

I definitely sympathize with being frustrated that apparently David feels the need to recycle plot points for female characters who are involved Scott Summers. But I do feel like it's a far cry from acting like the two characters are interchangeable.

But given that I've not actually read the issue, I really don't know. Maybe David IS writing Emma exactly like Jean, for all I know. Anyone who's actually read the issue, how is it?


  • At September 02, 2008 6:32 AM, Blogger LurkerWithout said…

    David doesn't write anything with Emma in it. He just added the new Summers kid in with the dystopian possible future story hes doing in "X-Factor"...

    Wolverine has a future kid in the M2 universe. The one Spider-Girl and American Dream are in. Can't remember her name. In regular 616 Marvel he and Collosus both have illegitimate kids off brief flings in the Savage Land. Also he and Mariko had an adopted daughter. But after whatever writer it was killed Mariko the girl was supposed to have been taken in by Silver Samurai as the last member of Mariko's family. And then some writer decided to do something to make Samurai REALLY scummy (I forget what) so no idea what happened with that kid after that...

  • At September 02, 2008 11:26 AM, Blogger SallyP said…

    I would think that Wolverine would have to be right up there with Hal Jordan when it comes to having illegitmate children littering the countryside...or the cosmos. And Scott is no slouch at producing offspring either.

    Like you, I would totally read of their misadventures.


  • At September 02, 2008 12:49 PM, Blogger Menshevik said…

    Yeah, I was a bit surprised too, especially since Peter David was not even the first time readers got to see alternate-future kids of Emma and Scott (if that is what this lady turns out to be). In the not quite so dystopian future of X-Men: The End (which is also the reality in which GeNeXt is set), Chris Claremont introduced no less than four kids that sprang from their loins.

    BTW, there was a story in some X-annuals (and the FF Annual) during Chris Claremont's first run which hinted that Rachel might not actually be Scott's daughter. A lot of fans speculated that Logan might be Rachel's daddy, but what Claremont then actually intended was that Rachel was the child of Jean Grey and the Phoenix.

  • At September 02, 2008 1:07 PM, Blogger K. D. Bryan said…

    I agree completely with your ponderings, Kali. Finding just one hole in this logic is being generous. I haven't read the issue yet but I very much plan to, given how big a fan I am of Layla Miller, Emma Frost and Scott Summers.

    Claiming that anyone is "writing Emma as Jean" strikes me as more than a little spurious without panel based examples. Naturally, Emma's going to have perform the same basic functions as Jean story-wise - she's now the X-Men's only telepath. If anyone can point me to specific examples where she's actually 'acting like Jean' (Playing Den Mother? Eating Suns? Hitting on Logan? Really, I don't even know what that means.) as opposed to the caustic, kick-ass and overtly sexual White Queen, I might take the claim seriously.

    And as far as this one-shot goes - in which Emma doesn't even show up from what I gather - I just don't see how this single issue illustrates any Great "Replace Jean With Emma" Conspiracy. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that a kid is the natural progression of two characters who are seen constantly in bed together. Hell, I'm surprised they don't have four kids or more like in X-Men: The End. :)

  • At September 02, 2008 1:43 PM, Blogger Unknown said…

    Actually, I very much think that the general trend is that Emma is a Jean surrogate. In . . . oh, I'm terrible with numbers, the recent X-title written by Brubaker where Jean and Emma are in the Savage Land, there's this bit where Emma is girl talking with Shanna about how dreamy Cyclops is because, while watching dinosaurs fight he's imagining ways to beat the dinosaurs up.

    I mean, that's what the character does, nowadays. Girl talk about how dreamy her guy is.

    I very much feel it's the same sort of vapid romance that Scott and Jean had. Way more profoundly than alternate future children of Scott and Emma showing up, there is this fairly ongoing tendency to turn Emma into Scott's girl sidekick, which sorta appalls me. Y'know, beyond the fact she's in the X-Men at all. ;)

  • At September 02, 2008 9:32 PM, Blogger Ununnilium said…

    Yeah, this is really silly. A writer who doesn't even write her added a new character with a similar relationship as another character had to Jean... that's quite a few degrees of separation from Emma = Jean.

    And I haven't seen Emma acting especially "dreamy" or "girly" lately. Of course, I haven't read Shanna, but...


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