Jean Grey #8

Issue Date: 
November 2017
Story Title: 

Dennis Hopeless (writer), Victor Ibanez (artist), Chris Sotomayor (colorist), VC’s Travis Lanham (letterer), David Yardin (cover artist, Mike Mayhew (lenticular variant cover artist), Mike McKone and Andy Troy (headshot variant cover artists), Jay Bowen & Anthony Gambino (graphic designers), Chris Robinson (assistant editor), Daniel Ketchum (editor), Mark Paniccia (X-Men group editor), Axel Alonso (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)
Jean Grey created by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby

Brief Description: 

While the ghost of adult Jean keeps Emma Frost unconscious, teenage Jean Grey has entered Emma’s mindscape to look for a shard of the Phoenix Force. The mindscape is basically Xavier’s school at the time adult Jean was still alive and Emma and Cyclops were conducting their psychic affair. The teachers and students react to Jean as though she is adult Jean, but soon become suspicious of her presence. Jean interacts with several of them, always searching for Emma and Cyclops. In between, she is attacked by more and more of them, as they all turn against her, with the exception of Beak and Angel Salvadore, who lead Jean to the garden shed where Emma and Scott were last seen. Angel and Beak are killed by a sentinel but Ghost Jean urges Jean on and she finds Scott and Emma. She makes it clear she isn’t interested in their shenanigans. Emma turns Scott against her and Jean realizes the shard is hidden in his chest. She takes it out and the next moment, both on the astral plane and in real life, she bursts into flames, much to Emma’s horror.

Full Summary: 

Emma Frost’s mindscape:
The grounds of the Xavier Institute:
They don’t understand, the five Stepford Cuckoos snootily inform teenage Jean Grey. She isn’t supposed to be here. Something isn’t right.

Say something! the ghost adult Jean mentally orders teenage Jean, who replies she couldn’t explain herself if her life depended on her.

The Cuckoos glare while Jean is talking to herself. Adult Jean said this was Emma Frost’s dream or whatever. How come the Cuckoos are “meangirling” her right now? It’s more of a living memory, adult Jean explains. They’ve penetrated the deepest darkest corners of the White Queen’s mind. The place she least wants them to see.

Cool. Sounds reeal safe, Jean mocks.

Ghost Jean continues that Emma is out and she’ll keep her that way but her subconscious controls her players. They will notice and attack any inconsistencies. Jean has to play along. Fit in long enough to find what they are looking for.

Fit in how? Jean complains. There was no teenage Jean at the time - there was the adult version!

She walks toward the school entrance where Xorn and the special class greet her. Xorn remarks he takes it her trip to Asia was cut short? A little, she replies evasively.

Beak looks up and announces he’s sure this surprises no one - more death and destruction hurtling their way. He refers to a burning engine or something similar hurtling their way with Wolverine on it.

Beast pushes the youngsters aside and catches it.

Logan looks up, surprised that Jean is back. Beast asks if everything is all right. He was under the impression Hong Kong was to be a longer affair.

Why does everyone keep talking about Hong Kong? Jean asks her older self, who explains she was in Hong Kong for this. She orders her to get out before they ask more questions she cannot answer. She doesn’t want this place to turn on her.

Beast and Wolverine comment that Jean is acting screwy and the special class stares at her.

Jean looks at a window. Her reflection is her older self, who explains that, the more they upset the balance of the place, the more the memory will fracture. It will tear itself apart trying to root her out. They are at a disadvantage because of Hong Kong. Even as adult Jean she doesn’t really fit.

Jean wonders if she will really grow up to look like her. If she grows, comes the reply. That’s a fair bet.

The next moment, she is in for a shock as Quentin Quire smashes the window with a club, shouting riot!

Adult Jean orders her to quit messing around. Angrily, Jean shoots back he attacked her with a bat. Of course, is the reply. Conscious or not, Emma will fight them at every turn. The woman is a force of nature. She can only control her so long. Cool, Jean sighs. She’ll just tell the homicidal figments of Emma’s imagination that they are on a tight schedule.

Unfortunately, she finds herself attacked by the rest of the Omega Gang, one of whom shouts she doesn’t belong. So she’s told, Jean shouts back and takes them out.

Moments later, Logan and Beast arrive, wanting to know what’s going on and taking on the Omegas. Ghost Jean urges Jean to get out. Jean replies she thinks it’s okay now that Wolverine showed up. That’s not Wolverine! ghost Jean reminds her.

Wolverine sniffs then shouts the kids are right. She isn’t Jeanie. Jean begins to babble trying to explain. Just run, Ghost Jean orders her. Wolverine threatens her with his claws. Jean telekinetically levitates the burning Glob Herman back and throws him at Logan, then takes the chance to run as Ghost Jean repeats it isn’t r al. She’s not the one who has to smell his skin burn off, Jean complains. Has done, many times, comes the unimpressed reply.

Angrily, Jean complains none of this was her idea. Emma Frost brain meat smash and grab? That’s all ghost Jean. Now she has to look for a hidden Phoenix puzzle piece and ghost Jean is too busy judging to give her any direction.

Subdued, the ghost tells her to just lie low and try to blend. She again runs into the special class and Xorn asks to what do they owe the pleasure. Just trying to outrun a pack of murderous rioters, she states then assures them it’s a joke. Ghost Jean calls her a terrible liar with blurting tendencies. Shut up and give her something to say! Jean retorts. The ghost suggests she ask about Emma. The Special class study her suspiciously.

Jean asks about Emma. The Cuckoos passing by inform her they last saw Emma sneaking off to the garden residence with Jean’s husband.

Good talk, she babbles to the special class and intends to go look for Emma. That moment, metal tentacles explode from the ground and attack her. All thanks to Magneto, who was hiding under Xorn’s mask. Sternly, he informs her she is not welcome here. The chalk writing on the blackboard does the same.

That Xorn guy is Magneto? Jean marvels. It was a weird time, her ghost replies and orders her to move her butt. Jean is still wondering about that as the Special Class tries to get her and she jumps out the window, only to be held back by one of Xorneto’s tentacles and dragged inside again.

She is a pretender, Magneto informs her. Unwelcome and uninvited. She does not belong! However, surprisingly two of the special class aren’t in on the act. Angel Salvadore attacks Magneto and smashes his head against the ground, while her boyfriend Beak helps Jean free herself. He promises they will take her to Emma. Jean follows them and they run, chased by all the others constructs from the scenario.

Jean asks why the two are helping her. Hello, their teacher turned out to be a super-villain! Angel reminds her. Jean insists that this isn’t real and they are part of Emma’s subconscious. Shouldn’t they also be trying to kill her? They shrug it off. They are not big on conformity.

They have almost reached the garden house when they are distracted by another sight: a huge Sentinel with three heads. Ghost Jean urges her to ignore it. Sometimes she says the craziest things to her, Jean deadpans. What is that thing? One of the big Sentinels like the ones that destroyed Genosha, Angel and Beak inform her.

The Sentinel kills Angel and Beak. Ghost Jean tells her to ignore it. They aren’t real. Jean calls her a monster. Ghost Jean tells her to grow up. Great, then she’ll be a monster, Jean deadpans as she opens the doors. Ghost Jean tells her to hate her all she wants. Just keep her eyes on the prize.

Jean bursts into the room to find Scott half-naked and Emma dressed in the Dark Phoenix outfit on the bed. He can explain, Scott announces automatically. Emma tells him that’s not Jean. But then she realizes it is Jean, in a way.

Throwing up her hands in disgust, Jean announces she isn’t his stupid wife and doesn’t care about their gross sex party. That’s not why she’s here.

Get out! Cyclops suddenly shouts and fires his optic blast at her. Jean barely dodges as ghost Jean urges she is almost on top of the puzzle piece. Can she sense it? However, Jean is too busy shielding serself from the optic blasts and snarks “Cheater Bro Dream” Scott is little bit distracting. Finally, she grab him with her TK and pins him against the wall.

Emma begins to warn her. Shut up! Jean cuts her off. She isn’t even a little intimidating right now. She spent half the day being hunted by leather daddy era X-Men. And a forty story spider-Sentinel. It’s all just a dumb memory! Right, Emma agrees as she turns to diamond. Her memory. Which means she controls it all. To prove it she turns everything around her to diamond.

Ghost Jean asks Jean if she can hear it… like a pulse… a heartbeat. Jean shushes Emma mid-rant and listens. She finally sees a tiny Phoenix-shaped flicker in Cyclops’ chest. Emma begs her not to. Jean ignores her, breaks Cyclops open and reaches for it.

Emma drops and awakes. “You little idiot!” she shouts as Jean floats surrounded by fire.

Characters Involved: 

Marvel Girl
Ghost of adult Jean Grey
Emma Frost

In Emma’s mindscape:
Beast, Cyclops, Emma Frost, Wolverine (all X-Men)
Angel, Basilisk, Beak, Dummy, Ernst, No-Girl (Special Class)
Glob Herman, Kid Omega, Radian, Redneck, Tattoo (Omega Gang)
Stepford Cuckoos

Kuan-Yin Xorn / “Magneto”
Wild Sentinel

Story Notes: 

The cover gives the title Psych Wars part 1.

The Cuckoos reference to “meangirling” is a reference to the 2004 film “Mean Girls.”

The mindscape emulates the Grant Morrison run on New X-Men

Jean’s confusion regarding the Xorn / Magneto is understandable, as it was retconned several times. Originally, Morrison meant for Shen Xorn just to have been a disguise for Magneto. Later, writers and editors retconned it that a brother of Shen Xorn had disguised himself as Magneto disguising himself as Shen Xorn. As Ghost Jean says, it was a weird time.

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