View Poll Results: Jean Grey <3

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  • Yay Jean Grey

    12 27.27%
  • Hey Jean Grey

    7 15.91%
  • <3 Jean Grey <3

    25 56.82%
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  1. #211
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Irony Engine View Post
    I think the reason we are all arguing about Cyclops here is that he really doesn't screw up so deliberately in most other situations. Clyclops has really always been a 'type'-- he's played the good guy in most scenarios. So maybe Meehl and others have an emotional attachment to this idea of him as the good guy- and are invested in justifying his actions. I gotta say, I really disagree with the thinking behind those justifications. I don't think that having childhood trauma is a free ticket to treat others badly. If that were the case, we could all run around being jerks to each other and expect no backlash-- I mean, who in their life hasn't had some trauma, right? That's not a special thing.

    The reason (i think) we're hung up on this one situation with Cyclops and Maddie is just that he really did break character. He walked out on his wife and child and never even called to check back in. That's very unlike the responsible Cyclops who leads the Xmen or the consistent guy who's in love with Jean, or the hero guy who often saves the day. It's just not like him. And the repercussions were huge.
    Quote Originally Posted by Meehl View Post
    Except my POV, which I've written about on the boards over and over again, is that the "Cyclops as a boyscout" thing exists entirely in the minds of readers who weren't really paying much attention to his character. In the 05 days, he was a teacher's pet, but that Xavier manipulating him as the father figure. Essentially, Xavier imparted his own sense of morality on Scott because Scott couldn't think for himself. I don't think of Scott as a shiny and innocent "Captain America" type. How could I? He left his first wife and cheated on his second wife. That doesn't seem very hero-y to me. I see him as the very rigid, non-joking, up-tight boss type that no one likes in real life. So, no, I'm not creating an illusion by which I can maintain my false belief of Scott's boyscout image. I'm pointing out that you all have fabricated this boyscout image of him AND blamed everyone else for believing in it!
    I think the problem may well be that a lot of readers, either because they disliked Scott's "boy scout" image in the first place or because they came in later and are accustomed to view Scott's biography through the filter of all the retcons that were added to it since Jean's return, not to mention stuff he would go on to do years and years later. In the light of the way Scott's character was heavily altered since 1986 his act of abandoning his family may not seem as out of character as it would appeared to people who - like myself - knew and liked Scott as he was written in the 1960s, 1970s and early-to-mid 1980s. For me however early X-Factor was where Scott's character was broken, and the retcons added to his biography then served mostly to provide a Freudian excuse for what he did to Madelyne:

    Poor little Scotty,
    Fell off his potty
    When he was a two-year-old laddie,
    And that's why he ran out on Maddie.

    Later writers added more of the same, not just by having Scott become a repeat offender by cheating on Jean and retconning his love for Jean into a symptom of emotional immaturity, but also in their destruction (I refuse to use the pompous euphemism "deconstruction") of the character of his surrogate father Charles Xavier (Deadly Genesis etc.). But it is still to my mind simply idiotic to blame Madelyne for marrying Scott because she did not anticipate the way Scott's character would be altered beyond recognition four years readers' time later.

    When looking pre-1986 Scott, I think pre-OMD Spider-Man actually makes a better comparison than Captain America, as Scott Summers and Peter Parker are both traumatized by loss and weighed down by responsibility. And so from a pre-1986 perspective the Pryor-Summers matchup was no more doomed from the start because of Scott's feelings about losing Jean than the Watson-Parker one was by Peter's lingering feelings over losing Gwen Stacy.


    Quote Originally Posted by Meehl View Post
    The only times Scott could be described as sanctimonious was when he was chewing out Xavier for being a hypocrite. He was never preachy. He was never helping little old ladies across the street. He was working too hard and trying too hard to impress Chuck.

    Think about it. You're listing all the bad things he's ever done AND still claiming that it's out of character. You can't play it both ways. If he's done all these horrible things, then he's not a good guy.

    See, you've done it again. Scott has always shown difficulty imagining himself outside of the X-men leadership position. He had to fight Storm to prove himself a leader. He couldn't stay away the numerous times he tried to walk away. He has no true personality, no real identity. He can't function outside of the X-men. That's who he is. He's not Captain America and no one thinks he is, except that you keep insinuating that he's suppose to be like Captain America.
    The thing is that to me this simply does not accurately describe the pre-1986 Scott. Both with the old team and with the new one he functioned as a leader without recourse to Xavier (who was believed dead for a large part of the 1960s and spent a lot of time in space with the Shi'ar before the Dark Phoenix Saga), and he had emerged out of the shadow of his mentor and become his own man, as became evident e. g. in their confrontations during the Dark Phoenix Saga. I have little sympathy for later attempts to retcon him into the kind of immature personality Meehl describes because with that kind of character he could not have been the leader he was and be as well-liked as he was and is by so many of his associates.

    What's the problem with declaring Scott's abandonment as OOC, as a serious deviation from the established characterization of the preceding 23 years? It is certainly not inadmissible just because another two decades later Scott did something equally outrageous and at variance with his established characterization, sorry.

    Also, I would dispute that Scott had difficulty imagining himself outside the X-Men leadership position. Ever since UXM #138, living outside the X-Men was his default mode, and it was not his inner compulsion but exterior forces that kept bringing him back (stumbling upon Magneto's island lair in time for #150, getting involved with battles in the Shi'ar galaxy not least thanks to being Corsair's son, being kidnapped by the Beyonder for the first Secret War, being targeted by Loki for X-Men/Alpha Flight, being summoned by Moira MacTaggert to Westchester in UXM #199). He only started displaying his "the X-Men need me" attitude in UXM #201, which not so coincidentally appeared the same month that Jean Grey returned from the dead. But to claim that he could not function in anything other then the position of leader of the X-Men is projecting NuScott back to the past. Scott was shown to be quite happy working as a fisherman under Aleytis Forrester and by all in-story evidence was perfectly happy as Madelyne's husband and colleague at his grandparents' airline. (Let's not forget that after his wedding he was in that position with just two short interruptions (for MSHSW and XM/AF) for close on to a year, story-time (Madelyne's pregnancy only becoming known in XM/AF).

  2. #212

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    Honestly, Meehl, I haven't read every single issue of xmen ever put out. I just haven't had time for it in my life. I'm a really busy person most of the time. I read pretty consistently up until a point, but in the last few years, I've been borrowing my friend's graphic novels and catching up... so I may have missed a detail or two about Cyclops' changing character. If you want to throw some recommended reading at me, please go ahead.

    Menshevik wrote: "The thing is that to me this simply does not accurately describe the pre-1986 Scott. Both with the old team and with the new one he functioned as a leader without recourse to Xavier (who was believed dead for a large part of the 1960s and spent a lot of time in space with the Shi'ar before the Dark Phoenix Saga), and he had emerged out of the shadow of his mentor and become his own man, as became evident e. g. in their confrontations during the Dark Phoenix Saga. I have little sympathy for later attempts to retcon him into the kind of immature personality Meehl describes because with that kind of character he could not have been the leader he was and be as well-liked as he was and is by so many of his associates."
    I guess this is sort of my impression as well. I don't see how Scott could have functioned so competently for so long if he was suffering from PTSD from his childhood. I never had the impression he was an Prof X programmed automaton... he does seem to be able to think for himself. I think the writers, in having him go dark, were trying to break him out of the niche he occupied as a character and cause him to evolve into something more complex... But I think in doing so, they did have him break character. Maybe Scott isn't a 'boyscout'- but he was at least represented as responsible. Assuming responsibility used to be one of his defining characteristics.

    I think the problem may well be that a lot of readers, either because they disliked Scott's "boy scout" image in the first place or because they came in later and are accustomed to view Scott's biography through the filter of all the retcons that were added to it since Jean's return, not to mention stuff he would go on to do years and years later. In the light of the way Scott's character was heavily altered since 1986 his act of abandoning his family may not seem as out of character as it would appeared to people who - like myself - knew and liked Scott as he was written in the 1960s, 1970s and early-to-mid 1980s. For me however early X-Factor was where Scott's character was broken, and the retcons added to his biography then served mostly to provide a Freudian excuse for what he did to Madelyne
    I wonder though- could there be a way of explaining his change in character that could allow for better continuity? Would it make sense to say, maybe, that it's not his childhood that's to blame, but just his experiences as a leader of the Xmen? Maybe losing Jean?

    I think pre-OMD Spider-Man actually makes a better comparison than Captain America, as Scott Summers and Peter Parker are both traumatized by loss and weighed down by responsibility. And so from a pre-1986 perspective the Pryor-Summers matchup was no more doomed from the start because of Scott's feelings about losing Jean than the Watson-Parker one was by Peter's lingering feelings over losing Gwen Stacy.
    That makes a lot of sense.

  3. #213
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Sonic View Post
    homewrecking floozy indeed. Although, to be fair, it was Scott who left his wife. The lion's share f the blame should rest squarely with him.
    Yeah, How many issues of X-Factor did it take for Scott to even tell Jean he was married and once he did tell her, she told him to go find his wife and son and he was all "I can't they're gone! She left and I can't find her.".
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  4. #214
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    Thanks for your comments!

    Quote Originally Posted by The Irony Engine View Post
    I wonder though- could there be a way of explaining his change in character that could allow for better continuity? Would it make sense to say, maybe, that it's not his childhood that's to blame, but just his experiences as a leader of the Xmen? Maybe losing Jean?
    Well, my theory is masculine post-partum depression.

    Seriously, I think some of what readers were shown in UXM #200-201 and XF #1 may have played at least a large contributing part. It is noticeable that as Nathan's birth approached Scott became colder towards his wife (she complained in #201 that all the other X-Men called her from Paris, only Scott didn't) and he did not show much affection for his son once he laid eyes on him. Maybe he subconsciously resented no longer being the sole centre of attention of his wife because of the baby "intruder"? Added to that you had the trauma of once again losing his surrogate father Charles Xavier (not knowing what had happened to him), his paranoid distrust of Magneto, and quite probably resentment towards the active X-Men for rejecting him. None of them spoke up for making him team leader, the leadership conflict was decided by a trial by combat, but at least IMO if the question had been put to the vote, the team would have voted for Ororo, not Scott. So Scott was in a deep funk; I think he would have gotten over it given time, but unfortunately then his old flame Jean returned from the dead and the other members of the original team pressured him to lead them in their bone-headed new venture. And in his state of emotional weakness he ignored his better judgement, not just in the way he dealt with his family situation, but also in letting Warren and Cameron Hodge railroad him into agreeing to their X-Factor scheme.

  5. #215

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ebonyleopard View Post
    Yeah, How many issues of X-Factor did it take for Scott to even tell Jean he was married and once he did tell her, she told him to go find his wife and son and he was all "I can't they're gone! She left and I can't find her.".
    Jean wasn't telepathic then and nobody would tell her Scott was married, so she had no way of knowing.
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  6. #216
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    Quote Originally Posted by MartinRedmond View Post
    Jean wasn't telepathic then and nobody would tell her Scott was married, so she had no way of knowing.
    she was never good at body language anyway. i give her a pass for this too.

  7. #217
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    Quote Originally Posted by Havok83 View Post
    Anodyne, what are your thoughtson the Maddie clones in UXM? Do you like the concept? Would you accept one of them emerging to start her life as the new Madelyne Pryor removed from the sins and tarnish of the old one
    Without Madelyne's memories and experiences, she wouldn't be Madelyne, just someone with the same name. Unlike Mr. Sinister, I don't regard people as interchangeable just because they look alike. Until one of the new clones is allowed to develop a mind and personality of her own--as Maddie did--they're all just animated mannequins.

    Now if Maddie's soul/essence/life force were to enter one of the clones' bodies, that would be a different matter. Another possibility would be to have Maddie de-aged to infancy and given a second chance to grow up with the guidance of a loving adoptive family. Maybe she'll be sent into the past, and little Maddy Pryor in Avengers Annual #10 was our Madelyne living her new life.
    Quote Originally Posted by Meehl View Post
    She was better as a villain. At least the writers had the decency to allow it to occur naturally piece by piece over some period of time. At least you got to see her breaking. She got a lot more reader sympathy from that.
    Point taken. My problem is less with how the writers did it than with why they did it. Trying to redeem one person's character by vilifying another's is not something I want to see in real life or in fiction.
    Quote Originally Posted by Meehl View Post
    I'm flipping through X-Factor 038. Maddy was retconned to be part of Jean, right? The Phoenix transferred some of Jean's memories and feelings into Maddy's empty shell. It was originally blamed on Jean not taking on the responsibility of waking up from her sleep in the cocoon. Jean is getting trolled this issue. Maddy is the sympathetic bystander per the story. Jean and Scott both recognize that they were responsible for what happened to Maddy. Cyclops cries for Maddy, blames himself.
    Scott does a token guilt-wallow; Jean promptly assures him, "You mustn't blame yourself. It's not your fault." And at the end of X-Factor #39, Scott's teammates are blaming Mr. Sinister and congratulating Scott on his victory.
    Quote Originally Posted by The Irony Engine View Post
    That's good storytelling, and I totally agree. I actually agree with Anodyne too... that would have been a good ending for Maddie as well. Either fits..
    Thanks. Too bad that wouldn't have suited the PTB's agenda.
    Quote Originally Posted by The Irony Engine View Post
    I wonder though- could there be a way of explaining his change in character that could allow for better continuity? Would it make sense to say, maybe, that it's not his childhood that's to blame, but just his experiences as a leader of the Xmen? Maybe losing Jean?
    My pet theory is that the adventure in Asgard reminded Scott how much he'd missed the adrenaline rush of adventuring with the X-Men. How could chopping wood and changing diapers compare with playing hero?
    Quote Originally Posted by Menshevik View Post
    Seriously, I think some of what readers were shown in UXM #200-201 and XF #1 may have played at least a large contributing part. It is noticeable that as Nathan's birth approached Scott became colder towards his wife (she complained in #201 that all the other X-Men called her from Paris, only Scott didn't) and he did not show much affection for his son once he laid eyes on him. Maybe he subconsciously resented no longer being the sole centre of attention of his wife because of the baby "intruder"? Added to that you had the trauma of once again losing his surrogate father Charles Xavier (not knowing what had happened to him), his paranoid distrust of Magneto, and quite probably resentment towards the active X-Men for rejecting him. None of them spoke up for making him team leader, the leadership conflict was decided by a trial by combat, but at least IMO if the question had been put to the vote, the team would have voted for Ororo, not Scott. So Scott was in a deep funk; I think he would have gotten over it given time, but unfortunately then his old flame Jean returned from the dead and the other members of the original team pressured him to lead them in their bone-headed new venture. And in his state of emotional weakness he ignored his better judgement, not just in the way he dealt with his family situation, but also in letting Warren and Cameron Hodge railroad him into agreeing to their X-Factor scheme.
    Considering it takes several months to bring an issue from first draft to published product, I'm pretty sure Claremont wrote Uncanny #201 under orders to pave the way for X-Factor #1 by creating trouble in Scott and Maddie's marriage.
    Last edited by Anodyne; 11-19-2012 at 11:23 AM.
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  8. #218
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anodyne View Post
    My pet theory is that the adventure in Asgard reminded Scott how much he'd missed the adrenaline rush of adventuring with the X-Men. How could chopping wood and changing diapers compare with playing hero?
    That does sound a bit shallow for (pre-1986) Scott for my tastes. I would say that his worries over Charles Xavier's state of health and his opposition to Magneto even being with the X-Men and New Mutants (both seen in UXM #199, set before the trip to Asgard) were more important.

    Considering it takes several month to bring an issue from first draft to published product, I'm pretty sure Claremont wrote Uncanny #201 under orders to pave the way for X-Factor #1 by creating trouble in Scott and Maddie's marriage.
    That is what I suspected as well, although it seemed to me already at the time that the UXM team and the X-Factor team were working at cross-purposes (and here the fact that not only X-Factor's writer was new to the X-franchise, but the series was for whatever reason handed over to a completely different editorial team exacerbated the ill-feeling). Some of the things Claremont did seemed to me to be intended as spanners in the works of the X-Factor machine, such as presenting the marital problems as primarily Scott's fault. That may have also have included Rachel installing an image of herself in the Greys' memory crystal in UXM #201, the postcard from Madelyne inviting the X-Men to Anchorage in UXM #206 (which reminded people that Madelyne got on well with the X-Men and undercut the popular theory that she had been obsessed with separating him from his friends and teammates), the way how Scott's brother Havok ended up with the X-Men, not X-Factor, and maybe even that Madelyne unexpectedly turned up again in UXM after conveniently dissappearing in X-Factor.

    Is there any documentation on the struggles behind the scenes of that era?
    Last edited by Menshevik; 08-02-2012 at 08:10 AM.

  9. #219
    Senior Member Anodyne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Menshevik View Post

    Some of the things Claremont did seemed to me to be intended as spanners in the works of the X-Factor machine, such as presenting the marital problems as primarily Scott's fault. That may have also have included Rachel installing an image of herself in the Greys' memory crystal in UXM #201, the postcard from Madelyne inviting the X-Men to Anchorage in UXM #206 (which reminded people that Madelyne got on well with the X-Men and undercut the popular theory that she had been obsessed with separating him from his friends and teammates), the way how Scott's brother Havok ended up with the X-Men, not X-Factor, and maybe even that Madelyne unexpectedly turned up again in UXM after conveniently dissappearing in X-Factor.
    I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who remembers the postcard. Madelyne was also supportive of Scott's decision to go to Asgard to rescue the New Mutants. "I understand. Those kids are counting on you." It was right after the X-Men's departure that she had her first premonition that she and Scott would "never be happy together again."
    Quote Originally Posted by Menshevik View Post
    Is there any documentation on the struggles behind the scenes of that era?
    Have you followed this thread?
    http://forums.comicbookresources.com...Madelyne-Pryor
    or this, particularly around page 15?
    http://forums.comicbookresources.com...9#post15091799
    I've also read on CBR and elsewhere that Claremont suggested either Dazzler or Jean's sister Sara as a substitute for Jean on the X-Factor team, but I can't recall the exact details. If I can find the link I'll edit it in here.

    Then there's this: http://www.vision-on.net/sundries/claremont.txt
    Last edited by Anodyne; 08-02-2012 at 11:44 AM.
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  10. #220
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anodyne View Post
    I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who remembers the postcard.
    And I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one who thinks that clone characters have been getting a raw deal from Marvel. (Besides Madelyne I've liked Ben Reilly and Joseph, for instance. Hate Stryfe, but not as much as I hate Cable).

    Madelyne was also supportive of Scott's decision to go to Asgard to rescue the New Mutants. "I understand. Those kids are counting on you." It was right after the X-Men's departure that she had her first premonition that she and Scott would "never be happy together again."
    Yeah, that was an effective addition on Chris Claremont's part. He must have known what was going to happen at the time he finished that annual.

    Have you followed this thread?
    http://forums.comicbookresources.com...Madelyne-Pryor
    or this, particularly around page 15?
    http://forums.comicbookresources.com...9#post15091799
    I've also read on CBR and elsewhere that Claremont suggested either Dazzler or Jean's sister Sara as a substitute for Jean on the X-Factor team, but I can't recall the exact details. If I can find the link I'll edit it in here.

    Then there's this: http://www.vision-on.net/sundries/claremont.txt
    Thank you for the links, the most interesting part of the first thread were the posts about the difference between Chris Claremont's and Louise Simonson's takes on Madelyne. I'm a bit sorry that there does not seem to be anything about Layton's take - it always seemed to me that early X-Factor was an object lesson on the dangers of what can happen when ex-fans are put in charge and want to turn back to what they found so awesome when they were young. Not only do they learn that You Can't Go Home Again, they may even end up destroying or heavily damaging what they loved, in this case e. g. Scott's character.

  11. #221

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    Quote Originally Posted by AcesX1X View Post
    she was never good at body language anyway. i give her a pass for this too.
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  12. #222
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    Here's a link to an informative article about the return of Jean, the degradation of Scott's character and the fate of Madelyne Pryor from a Scandinavian, but English-language site that compiled a lot of information from various sources, including some interviews for a Danish magazine. It does rather confirm some of my suspicions:

    http://secretsbehindthexmen.blogspot...-x-factor.html

  13. #223
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    Was any thought ever given to the possibility of bringing Jean back but not trying to hook her up with Scott right away, thus avoiding this whole mess? Is any thought being given to this possibility now? What if AvX actually ends with Scott and Emma getting married, and Jean gets to play little miss homewrecker yet again?

  14. #224
    We'll Be Waiting For You godzilla2099's Avatar
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    Jean Grey
    Maddie
    Emma Frost

    Hot Telepathic Chics with tempers.

    Did any of them ever try to mind control Scott?

  15. #225
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    Quote Originally Posted by PwrdOff View Post
    Was any thought ever given to the possibility of bringing Jean back but not trying to hook her up with Scott right away, thus avoiding this whole mess? Is any thought being given to this possibility now? What if AvX actually ends with Scott and Emma getting married, and Jean gets to play little miss homewrecker yet again?
    I thought of this too. Heck, if they wanted them back together so much in X-Factor, couldn't they just have Maddy and him naturally grow apart? Divorce later, then he could have part custody and be with Jean. Why does one have to come out a jerk or horribly humliated?

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