Favorite Female Characters in Literature # 21: Jean Grey

Favorite Female Characters in Literature # 21: Jean Grey... the girl that's had more clones and / or dopplegangers from another dimension than any other girl in comics.

Jean Grey has always been kind of special to me. I grew up reading the Claremont / Byrne issues of Uncanny X-Men, and there was real character development going on. And there was a love triangle, of course, and that led to a sort of ongoing tension. On one side there was Cyclops, who was truthfully in love with her, but also as boring as a haybale made of douche. And the other side of it was Wolverine, who was a scruffy bastard in those days, and not the psychopath he tends to be in the hands of most writers these days. I remember feeling like any decision Jean made was the wrong one, and hell… it didn’t matter anyway, because the big countdown to issue # 137 was on its way.

The issue where the Jean Grey saga came to an end. Spoiler... she dies. Spoiler, then she comes back as someone else. Spoiler... she's from another dimension. Spoiler... an alternate reality. Spoiler... a clone. Spoiler... it's the Phoenix entity reborn. Spoiler... she's a block of cheese. Spoiler... she's a background vocalist for Tom Waits. Spoiler... she's your father, Luke.

Marvel Girl... LOOK OUT! They're going to pretend to revive you so many times that it will lose any story-telling value!Â

Jean's first appearance. Simpler times. Where the good guys just wanted to be good guys, and the bad guys actually labeled themselves as evil. Jean is seen here playing a pivotal role, riding her inviso-skateboard into battle.

It's amazing how many times Bruce Timm is the artist for my favorite pieces of any given female character. I mean, the man is a total pervert (I mean that as a high compliment) but he doesn't shove aside his respect for the characters and their personalities.

A pivotal moment in Jean's life, and the story of the X-Men. This is where everything started to really come together as a story... where there was on ongoing saga rather than a series of events. I wish comics of today would take a hint. Make a story... not an event.

These two images came up when I did an image search for Marvel Girl. I really don’t have any idea why, but, what the hell… these are pretty girls so I’ll load them up.

Other than that thing where she destroys galaxies and sets everything on fire, I think Jean would be really nice to hang out with. We could play videogames together (yay, Skyrim!) and then just talk about, you know, stuff.

Some of my all-time favorite comics were done by the team of Jeff Parker, one of my best friends, and then Colleen Coover, my wife. They're just simple stories of the Scarlet Witch hanging out with Marvel Girl, and They Are Awesome. Plus, Mole Man!

Artist Mike Maihack illustrates one side of the Jean Grey / Scruffy Rebel Guy / Douche love triangle.

Carry on, Red. Carry on.


#25: Scarlet Witch

#24: Chance Falconer

#23: Vampirella

#22: Tigra

#21: Jean Grey


I’ve been thinking about women, lately. Women characters in comics. Women creators in comics. Female characters in literature. And pretty girls riding around on bicycles or walking along the sidewalk, etc, etc. Because of this, I’ve decided to make An Entirely Useless List. Why is it entirely useless? Because it’s my top 25 female characters from comics and literature, and such lists change at whim and at a breakneck pace. It’s IMPOSSIBLE to quantify favorites… the term favorite is far too malleable. A list of my best friends from high school, for instance, would not include anyone with whom I’m currently in contact. Times change. Still… I’m making the list. Why? I suppose I just like thinking about women.

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