The recreation room at Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters: ‘Hello, Angelo’ Monet St Croix greets him as she approaches Angelo “Skin” Espinosa who is sitting in front of the television, playing a video game. ‘Sup‘ Angelo replies without looking up. Monet asks him what he is doing down here, to which he explains that he is trying to beat his all-time high score on this stupid game. ‘You’re down here playing a game?’ Monet asks. Skin grins and replies that it is Space Invaders. Monet picks up a joystick ad comments that it looks rather primitive. Skin informs her that it is an Atari 2600, the “phattest system” ever made. ‘It’s a classic, man. You never had one of these things when you were a kid?’ Skin asks. ‘No’ Monet replies. ‘Too busy playing with your dolls, huh?’ Skin jokes, before Monet explains that, actually, she studied a lot. ‘Why does that not surprise me?’ Skin mutters.
Monet sits down some feet away from Skin, and asks him why he wastes his time with a relic like this when they have the most advanced computers in the world right here in the mansion? Skin tells Monet that she doesn’t get it, that he is not into those new high-tech systems. ‘They’re too flashy, ya know?’ he points out, asking who needs super realistic graphics and 32 bits - whatever the hell that is, when you have one of these bad boys. ‘Well…’ Monet replies, before Skin tells her to check out these controllers. ‘Just a joystick and a button. Simple’ he points out. ‘Fascinating’ Monet replies. ‘It is!’ Skin smiles, adding that there is not all these different buttons, levers, switches and other pointless options on it - it all boils down to pure, raw skill. ‘And you don’t think you’re cheating at all?’ Monet inquires. ‘Of course not. Damn! Just one life left…’ Skin mutters, using the same hand, with an extended finger, to rapidly push the button on the control.
Monet asks Skin how long he has been playing this game, to which he tells her that he doesn’t know, but maybe a couple of hours or so. ‘Why, you wanna play?’ he asks. ‘No thanks’ Monet replies quickly . Skin asks her ‘What’s the matter? Don’t think you can beat my all-time high score?’ ‘I couldn’t care less, really…’ Monet tells him, before Skin smiles at her, and remarks that a little healthy competition never hurt anyone. ‘I think you’re just… dammit! That was my last guy! Lemme put it on two-player and we’ll duke it our for a while…’ Skin tells Monet who replies ‘I don’t think so’. Skin raises his voice and tells Monet not to be such a “sissy girl wussy”. ‘Name calling? What are we, in fourth grade?’ Monet replies. ‘C’MON!’ Skin shouts. ‘Fine, Angelo. If it’ll keep you from getting upset, I’ll play your juvenile little game’ Monet concedes. ‘Alright let’s do it! I’ll even let you go first!’ Skin replies, handing Monet the joystick as he resets the game. ‘What a gentleman’ Monet replies.
Hours later, Skin’s head is slumped into his hand, ‘I have’ta admit, M, you’re pretty good at this…’ Skin mutters, while Monet smiles and asks him if he expected anything less. Moving the joystick, Monet announces that she has one more alien ship to destroy on this level, when, suddenly Skin shouts, ‘You died!’, pointing at the television, while suggesting Money prepare to witness the fatal fury of Angelo Espinosa.
4:30 in the morning now, Skin’s eyes are drooping, while Monet, now wearing her “official Gen X pyjamas” is as perky as ever, and asks him ‘What’s the matter, Skin, getting tired, hmmm?’ Skin opens his eyes ‘NO! No, of course not!’ he lies. ‘Sure’ Monet smirks.
Morning turns into afternoon as the competition continues on. Angelo has taken a short break to get more coffee. ‘Eh?’ he mutters as he sees Paige “Husk” Guthrie walk past the kitchen, listening to music on her portably music player. ‘Paige! Man, am I glad Ifound you…!’ Skin exclaims. Paige tells him that he looks horrible. Skin tells her that he knows, and asks her to do him a favor - to sit in the rec room with Monet and make sure she is not cheating at Space Invaders, as he has got to get some sleep. ‘But it’s 2:15 in the afternoon!’ Paige points out. ‘I know’ Skin replies, putting his hands to his head.
‘Um… Monet, Angelo sent me to make sure you’re not cheating. What’s that all about?’ Paige asks as she enters the rec room. Monet is now lying on the floor, near a box labeled “Jubilee’s comics! Touch them and I will murder you slowly”. Monet puts the joystick down and asks ‘He thinks I’m cheating?’ Paige replies that she doesn’t know, and adds that he seemed to be having problems of some sort.
The next day: ‘What’s going on?’ Everett Thomas a.k.a. Synch asks Paige, who informs him that Skin and Mont are in a heated competition of Space Invaders, that they are trying to see who can get the all-time highest score.
‘DIE! Die all you damned aliens die!’ Skin shouts, his fingers extended and tangled together to hold the joystick in place.
‘So, who’s winning?’ Synch asks while holding up a James Brown LP. ‘Monet, of course’ Paige smiles. Monet reclines back and asks Skin if he is ready to give up, ‘BAH!’ he retorts.
Twenty-four hours of heated play later: ‘They’re still at it?’ a surprised Synch asks, as he, Paige, Jono “Chamber” Starsmore and Artie and Leech all observe. ‘Yeah, and they’re both down to their last life’ Paige announces. Suddenly, the words “GAME OVER” flash across the screen. ‘Whoops, look like my game is over’ Monet remarks, casually. ‘HAH! You just bit the big one, Monet!’ Skin grins, pointing a finger at Monet. ‘You’re dead! Finished, game over for you, sister!’ he gloats. ‘Yes, but notice my score!’ Monet replies, pointing at the screen, Skin goes wide-eyed, as he sees the score staring back at him: 585,000,000. ‘Impressed?’ Monet asks. ‘Beginner’s luck! Don’t start celebrating yet, honey! I still got one life left!’ Skin replies, clenching his fists.
‘He’s really losing it’ Synch remarks. ‘Yeah’ Paige agrees. Skin continues to play the game, the joystick moves furiously as he exclaims that he must keep playing, that he has to beat M and gotta get the all-time high score, even if it kills him. ‘Damn!’ he calls out. ‘Good. You’re finally finished’ Monet smiles. Skin starts to laugh, and his mouth opens wide, ‘Yeah, but…yes! Check out my final score! Ha! 585,000,001! I beat you, M, I’m the Space Invaders champion of the universe!’ he laughs loudly. Monet calmly tells Skin that he only won by one point,. ‘Yeah, but I still won! Ha!’ Skin replies. ‘Did you?’ Monet asks. ‘Eh?’ Skin asks. Monet asks Skin if she just let him win. ‘Maybe I grew tired of that silly game, realizing how futile it was, and let myself die when I did’. Monet points out that they could have played for weeks. ‘I don’t know about you, but I’ve got more productive things to do with me time’ she adds.
‘HUH?’ Skin gasps. ‘see you later’ Monet smiles as she gets to her feet and triumphantly walks out of the room. Synch, Chamber, Husk, Artie and Leech watch in awe, before Synch calls out to her and asks her what happened, if she really let Angelo win. Monet turns back and smiles, ‘Silly Everett, I’ll never tell…’.
‘It’s fun!’ exclaims Jubilee as she looks at her scrapbook. One page has a ticket stub for a concert with Cibo Marro, a photo of Jubilee with Everett, Jono and Angelo at Christmas. Another photo of Jubilee and Wolverine, and another of Jubilee, Paige and M at the beach, and a sketch of Banshee, shaking his finger with the phrase “You kids need to blah blah blah blah” beside his image. ‘Hey, kids! Ever wonder what it would be like for the Gen X kids to star in their own wacky 70’s TV show? Of course you have! Well, read on and see what happens!’ Jubilee smiles.
Gangster Ave, in the bad part of town:Two men approach a house and one of them rings the doorbell. A panel in the front door opens and eyes peer out at the arrivals. ‘What’s the secret catchphrase, sucka?’ the person inside asks. ‘Nipsey Russell and your momma - last night’ one of the men in the porch responds. The door opens, and the man inside asks ‘You got my merchandise, my man?’ to the men who walk in. ‘You know it, Mr Gator’ one of the men replies. Mr Gator smiles, and tells the men that all they have to do now is wait. He leans down and exclaims ‘Don’t worry, kids, Uncle Gator’s gonna take real good care of you, dig?’ as Leech an Artie Maddicks, tied up and with gags over their mouths, look up, wide-eyed.
Meanwhile, inside Cassidy Investigations. ‘His name’s Johnnie Gator… one of the roughest pimps in town. He’s one extremely dangerous character, Ms Frost’ Mr Cassidy explains to Ms Frost, holding up a wanted photo of Gator, who is drawn as a alligator. ‘Please, Mr Cassidy, call me Emma’ Ms Frost replies, as Cassidy asks her to call him Sean, before reminding her that on the phone she said something about a note. Emma hands Sean the note. Ir is from Gator, informing her that he has her young friends and that he wants twenty million within three days, or the little ones will go “bye-bye”. ‘What a sick mind’ Sean remarks, reading the note. Emma tells Sean that she can’t get that kind of money right now, which is why she cam here. ‘I need you to get them back for me’ she adds.
‘Don’t worry, Emma, we’re on the case!’ Sean exclaims, before pressing a button on his intercom he asks Roxy to send in the Angels. ‘Trouble, Sir?’ Monet asks as she enters the room. ‘Yeah, what’s the problem?’ Husk asks. ‘Nice logo, Jim!’ Jubilee smiles, looking up at the “Banshee’s Angels” logo. ‘Thanks, I spent like five or six hours on it…’ Jim Mahfood replies. “Liar” says a small panel next to him. After a quick debriefing, Sean tells the Angels that this Gator is extremely unpredictable so they need to use their best judgment and be careful. ‘Not to worry, bossman. We’ll bust him by sundown’ Jubilee replies. ‘We’ll do our best Sir, you can count on that!’ Husk grins, suddenly appearing in a girl scout costume, while Jubilee asks ‘What’s with these tripped-out backgrounds?’ as stars surround them. ‘Good luck, Angels’ Sean tells the girls.
Later, on the streets, Jubilee asks them where they go to first. Monet announces that she has a contact that she wants to talk to, to which Husk asks if this, by chance, wouldn’t be a certain ex-cop who got kicked off the force a year ago for destroying five city blocks during the infamous Donut Day Riots. ‘That’s the one’ Monet replies. And so, ‘Well, well, well, whadda we got here? Damn, it’s three of the foxist fliest ladies in town!’ Bishop, with a large afro, and lots of jewellery exclaims. Monet tells him to spare the compliments, as they need some information. ‘Yeah, what you wanna know, mama?’ Bishop asks. ‘Johnny Gator. Where can we find him?’ Monet inquires. Bishop tells her that Gator is one brotha that is hard to find. ‘Maybe this’ll help refresh your memory, my man!’ Jubilee exclaims, holding up a large sack of money.
‘Damn girl, you one bad mama jama, ya know that?’ Bishop replies, adding that, seriously, he doesn’t know where that fool is. Bishop adds that he does know that Gator’s goons hang down at the Lizard’s Lounge, and they can lead them straight to him. ‘Good enough. Thanks, Bishop’ Money replies. ‘Yeah, be cool’ Bishop replies, giving her the peace sign with his fingers.
Later still, at the Lizard’s Lounge, Paige grabs a man by his shirt and tells him that they don’t have too many panels to waste in this comic, so they want to know where Gator’s henchmen are. ‘Girl, you straight tripping!’ the man replies. ‘Ya looking for us?’ a voice calls out, as the two henchmen step forward. One of them attempts to punch Jubilee, who dodges and tells him ‘Ha, you missed! Now it’s my turn!’ as she punches him hard, knocking the henchman backwards. Monet easily dodges the other henchman, and tells him that he is too slow. ‘Try this on for size’ she suggests as she kicks him in the fact with her platform shoes. ‘Damn, that had to hurt’ an onlooker mutters. The two men are bruised and battered, and one of them mutters that they cannot believe they got beat up by a bunch of girls. ‘Why don’t we just shoot ‘em, I mean, they ain’t got no guns’ the second points out, before the girls aim several guns at them. ‘Take us to Gator’ Monet demands. ‘NOW!’ Jubilee adds.
After a quick change of clothes, the girls are out of their funky threads and into their matching Angels’ costumes. They stand a short distance from the house ‘That’s the place’ Monet tells the others, and shortly, they kick their way through the front door. ‘Alright, stop right there, Gator!’ Monet orders. ‘Eh?’ Gator asks, confused. ‘Love those outfits, ladies’ one of Gator’s associates remarks. ‘Ah, the Angels! Good, you freaks are just in time!’ Gator laughs. Jubilee asks what the hell is going on here, while a shocked Husk points at a large contraption, and shouts ‘There’s Artie and Leech!’ Gator stands in front of the machine that Artie and Leech are strapped to and tells the ladies that he will try to keep this brief: ‘Forget Emma Frost and her money. Kidnapping Artie and Leech was just a clever ploy to bring you all here! After all, the more mutants, the merrier, dig?’ he explains.
‘Say what?’ Husk asks, shocked. ‘We’re mutants?’ a confused Jubilee asks. ‘Ya see, I need the power of all you mutants to bring to life my army of bad-ass robotic super pimps!’ Gator reveals, motioning to the robot-pimps. ‘Scary, ain’t it?’ one of Gator’s associates remarks. Gator continues, boasting that with these dynamite super beings fully activated, he will be able to take over the freaking world. ‘This is getting cornier by the minute’ Money remarks, while Jubilee declares that she is seriously freaking out. ‘Here, allow me to show you…’ Gator begins as he presses the activate button on the machine. It kicks in, zapping the mutant powers out of Artie and Leech, transferring them over the sinister robot pimps. ‘It’s a good thing we brought the heavy artillery’ Monet calmly states as she holds up a very large weapon.
Husk turns to Jubilee and asks her what she is doing. ‘Puttin’ on our theme music, of course’ Jubilee replies, as she plugs in the large stereo. ‘Get those funky broads!’ Gator orders, and the robot-pimps move forward towards them. ‘Showtime, girls…split up and take ‘em out!’ Monet tells the others as she files the missile-weapon towards the robot-pimps. ‘Right on, M!’ Husk agrees as she starts shooting the robot-pimps with her guns, and Jubilee does the same. The robot-pimps are blown to pieces, ‘Eat this, vile pimps!’ Husk shouts as she continues to shoot them. ‘Hee, hee, good one, Paige!’ Jubilee laughs, when suddenly, Monet’s missile launcher is jammed. ‘Ah well, it still makes a good club!’ she decides as she uses to it smash off one of the robot-pimps’ head.
One of the other robot-pimps swats Husk backwards, which angers Jubilee. ‘That’s my friend, you jerk!’ she shouts, shooting it point-blank in the head. Husk gets to her feet and tells the others that these things are getting harder to take out, as there are too many of them. Monet wraps one arm around one of the robot-pimps while kicking another to pieces, and exclaims ‘Hey, that gives me an idea!’ before telling Jubilee to crank that funk up all the way. ‘You got it!’ Jubilee grins as she turns the volume up to “way too loud”. Instantly, the robot-pimps are blown to pieces, and as spare parts rain down on him, Gator shouts ‘Nooo! My super pimps! The raw funk is destroying them!’ Holding up the LP, Husk quotes “Funk not only moves, it can remove, dig?” While Monet leaps forward, ‘Yo Gator, dig this!’ she shouts as she punches him hard in the face.
Later, back at Cassidy Investigations, Artie and Leech are safe, and smile as they stand near Sean, who congratulates the Angels on their good work, as Gator’s plans for world domination have been thwarted. ‘Yes, thank you, girls’ Emma smiles at them. ‘Hey no problem’ Jubilee replies, and Monet tells her that it is all in a day’s work, adding that she thinks a little celebrating is in order tonight. Jubilee suggests they get down at the local disco tonight. ‘ALRIGHT!’ everyone agrees.
Synch presents the Unofficial Generation X Bootleg Trading Cards! He states that are fun, collectable and extremely illegal, while giving the instructions to assemble the cards:
Firstly, cut out this page or photocopy it at your local copy shop, where you can also enlarge or reduce the size of your cards using the photocopy machines. Then, using an x-acto knife (be careful) cut out each individual card and mount it on poster board or a comic book cacking board. Synch recommends using spray glue, or a glue stick. Then, forge Jim Mahfood’s signature on the cards and sell them for fifty bucks each - pure profit! Most importantly, remember to have fun with your cards, exchange them with friends, or simply use them as a coaster for your beverage.
The cards in the collection are:
#9 White Queen
Every three hours, a bus carrying passengers from Snow Valley, Massachusetts, arrives in New York City. Unlike most of these travellers, one lone soul isn’t quite sure why he has come here. His name is Jonothan Evan Starsmore, a.k.a. the mutant called Chamber. He couldn’t take another training session, Banshee was working them too hard today. He is glad he could slip out and get into the city for a while. He tells himself that the other kids are okay, but he has to get away from them every now and then. He gets off the bus and cross the road, deciding that none of them understand what it is like to be him - to have half a face. Jono reminds himself that he can’t even speak without using his mutant powers. It is a cruel twist of fate - he is an incomplete person. Most of the time, he feels truly alone, isolated and detached from the outside world.
‘What’s wrong with me? Am I just feeling sorry for myself?’ Jono asks himself as he walks along the street, wondering why he can’t just accept his fate like the others have. Leaves and litter blow past him in the wind, knowing that he is not like the others, they can go out into the real world and pretty much be accepted. They can walk and talk amongst these “normal” people and pretend to be one of them. He looks up at a large billboard with a scantily clad woman advertising a perfume called “Risk”, accompanied by the words “It will make you beautiful”. But, the more Jono thinks about it, he is not sure why they would want to. ‘Look at the way these people treat each other’ he thinks to himself, looking at two men arguing on the street.
Jono decides that no matter where you go, it seems like most people are only out for their own selfish interests. He sees more people being rude to each other, and decides that they don’t care who they have to step on, just as long as they et theirs in the end. ‘Heh, and they call us freaks’ he thinks to himself. He carries on down the street, and decides that New York is okay, the city can be fast paced, but at the same time, he finds a strange comfort here. ‘At least I can walk the streets here without being noticed’ he acknowledges. He walks past a young couple, ‘Hmm, young lovers’ he thinks to himself, while realizing that he is not even sure what is going on between he and Paige. He recalls telling her that he thought they could never be together. Not he is not even sure. He walks past a cinema which is advertising the films “Faster Pussy Cat Kill Kill”, “Hard Boiled” and “Taxi Driver”, and wonders how you can be optimistic when there is nothing certain in your life?
Chamber starts to walk back towards the bus terminal, he reminds himself that he has always thought about leaving, about going somewhere else. Someone in the ticket booth rattles off the names of places that buses are boarding to - St Louis, Michigan, Chicago, Seattle, Kansas, Detroit, Los Angeles… when suddenly, a homeless person calls out to Jono, ‘Could you help me out, please?’ he asks. Jono puts some money into the man’s cup. ‘Bless you’ the homeless man tells him. ‘Now boarding!’ a voice calls out. Jono turns and gets onto the bus that is going back to Snow Valley. ‘My name’s Jonothan Evan Starsmore, a.k.a. the mutant Chamber’ he tells himself.
Two pages contain sketches of the Generation X members by Jim Mahfood, and his notes on the characters. He attempted to draw Monet as a little more light-hearted, and originally drew Jubilee smoking, until his editor corrected him on that. He noted that Chambers was fun to draw, but originally drew him with a visible neck, and that Synch seemed to be quite subdued.
‘Yeah, check it out, pimps and players!’ Bishop, with a comb in his afro exclaims. That in the fine tradition of their deluxe bootleg merchandise they present the unofficial Gen X bootleg t-shirt design feature Banshee’s Angels. ‘So shake your groove thing down to the local mall and have this baby screen printed on your favourite t-shirt or jacket! You’re sure to be hustler of the year and the envy of your friends and enemies! Word!’ Leech and Arte are standing nearby. ‘Fresh!’ Leech grins, before cutting out the t-shirt design on the page of the Generation X special. He goes to the local mall and gives it to the shop clerk and the screen printing store. A high-tech turbo-charged screen printer then prints the design onto the t-shirt. ‘Yo, simply cut along the dotted line, dig?’ Bishop remarks, looking at the design with Monet, Jubilee and Husk posed, carrying an assortment of weapons. Leech then puts his new t-shirt on.
The following comic is a parody - our lawyers made us put this up here.
Unhappy with the way the world turned out, beat writers Jack Kerovac, Allen Ginsberg and William S Burroughs travel to the future in order to destroy it.
The present, New York City: one of the writers exclaims ‘These squares totally screwed everything up, man. Nothing but a bunch of uptight, materialistic hypocrites!’ Another agrees, before asking if the giant espresso cannon is ready yet. ‘Yes’ the third replies, standing next to the cannon, boxes of espresso stacked beside it. ‘Activate it!’ one of them shouts. Suddenly, ‘Holt it right there, Beatniks!’ a voice calls out, and the writers turn to see Monet, Husk and Chamber standing nearby. ‘You guys can’t destroy the world!’ Husk tells them. She adds that sure, things might not have turned out the way they expected, but they need to look at the bright side - ‘At least now we got the internet and digital THX sound at the movies’.
‘And one thing certainly hasn’t changed’ Monet smiles. ‘What’s that?’ one of the writers asks her. ‘The delicious taste of Hostess Twinkie Cakes!’ Monet replies, holding up the sweet. One of the writers takes one and bites into it: ‘You’re right, pussycat!’ he exclaims, adding that he could never resist the righteous golden sponge cake covering on these babies. ‘And the scrumptious cream filling - I could write hundreds of obscure poems about it alone!’ another admits. The third tells the others that maybe they shouldn’t blow up the world after all. ‘Yeah’ one of them agrees. ‘Cool!’ Monet smiles.
You get a big delight in every bite of Hostess Twinkie Cakes.