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Character Spotlight: Jean Grey

by Ryan.L on May 03, 2017

 

Jean Grey has been a very popular and cherished character since her debut in X-Men #1 all the way back in 1963. She started off as more of a B level team member until a cosmic event would transform her into the Omega level mutant we know today. Over the decades she has died and been reborn which is fitting for a character named Phoenix. Her last death was back in 2004’s New X-Men run by all-star writer Grant Morrison.
 
Many thought we would never see her again, but then a schism struck the X-Men. Cyclops took those that would follow him and Wolverine took those that would follow him and they separated. Cyclops’s actions thrust the X-Men into a war with the Avengers and things were not looking good. The Phoenix force had returned but Jean was not around to be the host and it found itself split and Cyclops, Emma Frost, Magik, Colossus and Namor all became hosts for the Phoenix Force. Ultimate power ultimately corrupts and Cyclops took down his fellow Phoenix Five members to have the force all to himself. The power all consumed him and it caused a corrupted Cyclops to murder his mentor Professor Charles Xavier.
 
Many were beside themselves from the events, Beast being one of them. Beast decided drastic measures were in need and he went to the past and brought young Cyclops, Jean, Iceman, Beast and Angel to the future to confront Cyclops for what he has done. Beast’s plans didn’t go as he wished and the original five were stuck in the present. We finally had Jean back but this Jean was different. She is younger, and without a mentor to help her control her drastically growing power, or the obligation to Cyclops this Jean has and is becoming a very different character. Now she is the leader of the original five and has finally received her very own series.

There has been so many great moments through the years with Jean. We take a look back of some of the most memorable moments in her history.

                         
 
X-Men (1963) #1: the Beginning
Jean Grey arrives at the Xavier School for the Gifted. Not long after arriving the team is assembled to take on their first threat, the mysterious mutant known as Magneto.
RECOMMENDED
 
Uncanny X-Men (1963) #100-108: the Phoenix Rises
Things for Jean are about to change forever. After a battle on a space station orbiting Earth, the team boards a crippled Starcore space shuttle and heads back to Earth. It doesn’t look like they will be able to enter Earth’s atmosphere safely due to the auto pilot being damaged. So Jean uses her psi-shield and pilots the shuttle back to Earth. The shuttle is hit with cosmic rays and Jean is changed forever into the Phoenix. Jean uses her new powers to assist the X-Men, the Starjammers and Princess Lilandra in stopping her brother leader of the Shi-Ar Empire from unleashing the power of the M’Kraan crystal and from subsequently destroying the entire galaxy.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

 
Uncanny X-Men (1963) #129-137: the Dark Phoenix Saga
You know what they say, ultimate power ultimately corrupts and that is exactly what happens here. With all these new emotions the Phoenix Force has never felt before Jean loses control while also being manipulated by a member of the Hellfire Club, Jean becomes the Dark Phoenix. The X-Men are in a battle with the Shi-Ar as they state that Jean is too dangerous to let live. The X-Men must decide if the life of one of their own is worth the lives of the entire galaxy.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
 
X-Factor Epic Collection: Genesis & Apocalypse
Collecting Avengers (1963) #263; Fantastic Four (1961) #286; X-Factor (1986) #1-9, Annual #1; Iron Man Annual #8; Amazing Spider-Man (1963) #282 and material from Classic X-Men #8, 43.
Jean Grey is alive! With the help of the Avengers and the Fantastic Four Jean is reunited with her fellow original X-Men and together they form X-Factor. Things get crazy immediately as the team goes up against a new enemy who will become one of the greatest villains the X-Men will ever battle, Apocalypse!
RECOMMENDED
 
X-Men: Inferno
Collecting Uncanny X-Men #239-243, X-Factor #33-40, X-Terminators #1-4, New Mutants #71-73 and X-Factor Annual 4.
Mr. Sinister's Marauders attack the X-Men while a horde of N'astirh's demons prey upon the helpless, horrified populace of New York City. Jean encounters Madelyne Pryor, aka the Goblyn Queen, who turns out to be her clone and also Cyclops’s wife.
RECOMMENDED
 
Uncanny X-Men (1963) #281-283: Gold Team
Jean rejoins the X-Men and is placed on Storms Gold team along with Bishop, Colossus, Archangel and Forge. The Gold team goes up against Emma Frost the White Queen but Sentinels attack and Jean is seemingly killed but before she dies she transfers her mind into the comatose body of Emma Frost.
RECOMMENDED
 
X-Men: Wedding of Cyclops & Phoenix
Collecting X-Men (1991) #27-30 and Annual #2, X-Men Unlimited (1993) #3, Uncanny X-Men (1963) #308-310 and Annual #18, X-Men: The Wedding Album, and What If? (1989) #60.
Things have been on again, off again for this star-crossed couple, but finally Jean and Scott get married. Even amongst the legacy virus killing mutants, Sabretooth locked in the mansion, Jean and Scott won’t let that stop them from tying the knot.
RECOMMENDED
 
X-Men: The Adventures of Cyclops & Phoenix
Collecting Adventures of Cyclops & Phoenix #1-4, Askani'son #1-4, X-Men: Phoenix #1-3, X-Men: Books of Askani & material from Marvel Valentine Special.
Scott & Jean have only just been married and before they can enjoy it they are transported 2,000 years into the future where Apocalypse rules all. We also get to see how Nathan Summers became the man known as Cable. The Askani’s secret origin is revealed and their connection to Rachael Grey, Scott and Jean’s daughter from an alternate future reality.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
 

X-Men Vs. Apocalypse Vol. 1: The Twelve
Collecting Uncanny X-Men #376-377, Cable (1993) #73-76, X-Men (1991) #96-97, Wolverine (1988) #145-147.
Setting his grand plan for godhood into motion, Apocalypse dispatches his agents to capture the world's most powerful mutants, the fabled Twelve: Professor X, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Storm, Iceman, Sunfire, Polaris, Cable, Bishop, Mikhail Rasputin, the Living Monolith and Magneto. The team must make a temporary truce with Magneto and one longtime member of the X-Men ends up sacrificing themselves to end the threat of Apocalypse once and for all.
RECOMMENDED
 
X-Men: The Search For Cyclops #1-4
A lost Cyclops roams the Earth while the X-Men mourn the loss of their leader, Jean Sets out in search for clues to what happened to Cyclops.
RECOMMENDED


X-Men: Eve of Destruction
Collecting X-Men (1991) #111-113, Uncanny X-Men (1963) #392, 393
The island nation of Genosha lead by Magneto has been become a mutant haven. Magneto builds an army to take to war against the humans but a team of X-Men lead by Jean Grey infiltrates the small island nation to take down Magneto before his war can even begin.
RECOMMENDED
 
New X-Men Vol.1: E is For Extinction
Collecting New X-Men (2001) #114-117
Jean’s powers start to return but she is nowhere near as powerful as she was. With Scott back he sets up a new team consisting of himself, Professor Xavier, Beast, Wolverine, Jean Grey and Emma Frost. The team focuses on building the school while a new threat appears and decimates the worlds mutant population.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
 
New X-Men Vol. 2: Imperial
Collecting New X-Men (2001) #118-126.
The U-Men launch an all-out attack on the X-Men while a villain thought long gone makes their reappearance.  Jean is put to the test as she tries to protect the students at the school causing her power levels to increase dramatically causing her to burst into flames.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
 
New X-Men Vol. 6: Planet X
Collects New X-Men 146-150.
Jean dies in a battle to stop Magneto and his planned genocide of the entire human race.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
 
X-Men: Phoenix Endsong
Collecting X-Men: Phoenix Endsong (2005) #1-5.
What will happen when the Phoenix returns to Earth in search of the one mortal who could ever contain its power... only to find her dead? 
RECOMMENDED
 
X-Men Origins: Jean Grey (2008) #1
Take a look back at when Jean Grey first came to Xavier’s School for the Gifted.
RECOMMENDED
 
All-New X-Men Vol. 1: Yesterday's X-Men
Collecting All-New X-Men #1-5.
Beast brings the original five X-Men from the past to the present. They find that what they thought Xavier’s dream would look like is far from what they encounter it to be.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
 

All-New X-Men (2012) #15
Jean Grey meets Rachael Grey, her and Cyclops’s daughter from an alternate future.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
 
X-Men: Battle of the Atom
Collecting X-Men: Battle Of The Atom #1-2, All-New X-Men #16-17, X-Men (2013) #5-6, Uncanny X-Men (2013) #12-13 And Wolverine & The X-Men #36-37.
Something horrible happens to the past versions of the X-Men that shakes spacetime to its core, and more X-Men arrive from the future with a message: The original five must return home! But not everyone wants to go back.
RECOMMENDED
 
Guardians Of The Galaxy / All-New X-Men: The Trial Of Jean Grey
Collecting Guardians of the Galaxy (2013) #11.NOW-13 and All-New X-Men (2012) #22.NOW-24.
Jean alive is not just sending shockwaves on earth, its sending shockwaves through the galaxy as well. Once an alien race finds out the host of the destructive Phoenix Force is alive they set out to hold her accountable for the destruction the Dark Phoenix caused. But can you condemn someone for what they have not done yet?
RECOMMENDED
 
Extraordinary X-Men Vol. 1: X-Haven
Collecting Extraordinary X-Men #1-5.
Jean joins Storm’s team to help fight for mutant survival. The terrigen mist is killing mutants and the X-Men will stop at nothing to ensure their survival. Also Jean meets Old Man Logan for the first time.
RECOMMENDED
 
X-Men: Blue (2017) #1
The original five are back together but with a slight difference, Jean is now the leader of the team and their mentor is none other than the man who tried to kill them, Magneto.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
 
Jean Grey (2017) #1
Jean has had a premonition that the Phoenix Force is coming for her. She has already learned the terrible fate that befell her predecessor, and so she will stop at nothing to not let history repeat itself.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

Check out our review of the new series Jean Grey #1

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