A Comic Book Entry – A vs X: A Meta Perspective

Introduction and Re-cap Pages:
Deadpool: Hello readers!  As your official meta Marvel representative…
Tippy-Toe: Ahem.
Deadpool: Yeah, yeah, besides Squirrel Girl and her pets who totally did not defeat that jerk Thanos.  Anyway, I’m here to add some much needed honesty and perspective to this whole A vs X storyline, which, as the blogger who is hosting us assured you, will be lame.  Also, let me introduce Ambush Bug…
Bug: Hello!
Deadpool: Who is, I’m told, the official meta DC representative, whatever that means, and that he’s probably crazier than I am.
Bug: I am not.  I just have a higher rank in my hyper-reality awareness power than you do.
Deadpool: Yep, crazier than me.  Anyway, we’re here to present to you a ‘what really should have happened’ scenario of this whole A vs X storyline in a way that mimics but doesn’t violate any copyright of Cracked.com’s “10 times shorter and 100 times more honest” series or the website “How It Should Have Ended.”  Have I covered all the legal mumbo-jumbo?
Bug: Well, using us may be a copyright violation as well, but for now, let’s say yes.
Deadpool: Rock on.  So I’m going to assume you readers out there know what’s going on with this storyline…
Bug: What if there are new readers?
Deadpool: I guess, but do we have time for this?
Bug: Hmmm, that’s a good point.  Let’s refer readers to the blog on “Fridge Logic vs Chomper Logic” and “Re-boot.”  For those who don’t want to go back and read those blogs, which they should, the whole fight between the Avengers and the X-men is because Phoenix is coming back to Earth.
Deadpool: Also because Cyclops has turned into a complete sociopathic jack-ass.
Bug: Shouldn’t that make you like him more?
Deadpool:  Nah.  He lacks that certain je ne sais quoi to be a likeable sociopathic jack-ass.
Bug:  That’s fair.  Anyway, here we’re going to present to you our take on how this really should be happening.
Deadpool: And totally isn’t.  Really, we should stop reading, because it’s lame, but it’s also like picking a scab.  We know we shouldn’t do it, but we do anyway, especially when it heals over so fast…
Bug: Eww, stop that.
Deadpool: Oh, right.  So here’s what should have happened from the beginning.  Avengers, assemble!
Bug: So how long have you wanted to say that?
Deadpool: You have no idea.

Avengers Mansion:
Captain America – I’ve called this all hands meeting of everyone who’s ever been an Avenger with any power to tell you about the greatest threat we’ve ever faced – the Phoenix force.
Storm & Wolverine – Uh-oh.
Cap – It’s some sort of cosmic parasite that latches on to a human host and destroys everything in its wake.
Storm & Wolverine – Er, not exactly.
Cap – Nova is currently in medical bay because he pushed himself too hard to warn us about this thing.  But don’t worry, we’re going to stop it.
Storm & Wolverine – -start snickering in a deranged fashion-
Cap – Ok, and so Tony here has come up with some ideas…
Storm & Wolverine – -laugh harder-
Iron Fist – And also I just found out about this prophecy in Kun-lun about the return of the Phoenix.
Storm & Wolverine – -crack up-
Cap – Would you two care to explain to the rest of the class what’s so funny?
Storm – First, please explain about this prophecy about the return of the Phoenix?
Iron Fist – Yes, the wise masters say that the Phoenix will one day return…please stop giggling… and only the dragon and Phoenix can save the world…what is so funny?

Off-panel Side-bar:
Bug: I’d like to interject here a moment.
Deadpool: Dude, it’s like your thing.
Bug: I have no problem with tweaking a mythos.  The exact nature of the Green Lantern power source and origin has been tweaked many times over the years to add depth and interest…
Deadpool: And explain that lame weakness to yellow thing.
Bug: …and that.  Not everything has been entirely successful, but now the current explanation of several Corps on an emotional spectrum of the universe adds to the overall folklore and mythology.
Deadpool: And it adds six more colors to their costume options!  Ooo, look, there’s a cute little kitty in a cute little red costume.  Here, kitty kitty!
Bug: Wade, don’t!
Dex-starr: Rrrawwrrr!!!!
Deadpool: Owwww, oh my god what is wrong with this cat!?!?!  Owwwww the pain….
Bug: It’s a good thing you can’t die.
Deadpool: You say that because you don’t know how much this hurts.  So this is better how?
Bug: It sure made my day.  So yes, now there are seven Lantern Corps of varying abilities and complexity.  The end result is a more interesting Green Lantern mythos.
Deadpool: And those Star Sapphires are totally hot!
Bug: …and that.  The point is, the tweaking has been written such that it doesn’t feel completely like a shoehorned effort to stuff something new into the continuity…
Deadpool: Boom!
Bug: …that really doesn’t belong.  Now, the original Phoenix borrowed heavily from Middle Eastern mythology, as it should, but in this case, mixing Middle Eastern and quasi-Eastern mythology just feels like shoehorning.  Now, I’ll admit sometimes there are two things that are perfectly fine individually that don’t seem like they would go together, but do.  Like oil and vinegar, or chocolate and peanut butter…
Deadpool: Or Cable and Deadpool!
Bug: Sure, if you say so.  But this feels heavy-handed.  It’s like trying to combine smoked salmon and grape jelly.  Sure, both go great on a bagel, but would you put them together on a bagel?
Deadpool: I might.
Bug: Would a sane person?
Deadpool: Probably not.  So what Ambush Bug is saying is that this feels like a cheap excuse to get two teams that generally have nothing to do with each other into a big all out brawl.
Bug:  In short, yes.  Anyway, back to the assembled Avengers.

Avengers Mansion:
Iron Fist – Seriously, what is so funny about an ancient mystical city’s prophecy about the return of the Phoenix and end of the world?
Wolverine –  Yer mystics are a little late.
Iron Fist – What?
Wolverine – Yeah, Phoenix has returned mebbe ten times.
Storm – It hasn’t been that many.
Wolverine – You sure?
Storm – Well, Jean was originally possessed soon after our team was assembled.  She continued on the team in that state for a few years before the events that triggered her transformation into Dark Phoenix.  At that time she technically left Earth and destroyed a sun.  By the way, Mr. Stark, I hope you took that into your calculations on how to stop the Phoenix force.
Iron Man – Er…
Wolverine – Ok, so yer sayin’ when Jean came back from destroying the sun and the alien battle fleets…
Iron Man – Er…
Wolverine – See that, was one return.
Storm – I suppose it could be construed as such.  Now, we both know Jean killed herself on the moon.  Soon after that, the bird was cited back on Earth.
Wolverine – Right, so two returns right there.
Storm – Yes, but that was just the Phoenix trying to return Jean’s memories to it and instead it got Madelyne.
Wolverine – That’s fair.  But it could be what made Madelyne so powerful was the part of the Phoenix force.  We know when Jean absorbed Madelyne’s memories, she also absorbed memories of the Phoenix.
Storm – I’m not sure that was a return so much as multiple-personality disorder.
Spider-man – Um, if I ask who this Madelyne person is, will I regret it?
Storm & Wolverine – Yes!
Spider-man – Right, shutting up again.
Storm – I will grant you after that Rachel Summers entered this world, which was definitely a return.
Wolverine – See, can’t argue with that.
Cap – Who?
Wolverine – That is a long, long story.
Deadpool: If I walk, the movie will be over.
Bug: Really, a Mel Brooks reference now?
Deadpool: Dude, he’s a comic genius.
Storm – Suffice to say that Rachel Summers was a bearer of the Phoenix force.  She claimed to have inherited the power from her mother, who was Jean Grey in another universe.
Cap – *blink blink* I have no response to that.
Spider-man – There is no response to that kind of crazy.
Wolverine – So Rachel’s entry into this universe was a return of the Phoenix force.  I know.  I kept the girl from blowin’ up New York.  Twice.
Iron Fist – Well, that’s bad, but that’s not destroy the universe bad.  Maybe that’s the return the prophecy talked about…
Wolverine – Rachel bitch-slapped Galactus and had to be talked down from destroyin’ him.  Does that count as universe destroying bad?
Iron Fist – Er…
Spider-man – Hey, I’m concerned about the blowing up New York bad.  I mean, isn’t that bad enough?
Wolverine – Hey, Tony, how does something that can bitch-slap Galactus figure into your plan?
Iron Man – Er…
Storm – So Rachel’s original entry could be considered a return of the Phoenix force.  After Rachel’s adventures in space, she returned to Earth much more powerful, which could also be considered a return.  I’ll say we’re at six returns.
Wolverine – Sure it’s not seven?
Storm – Well, Rachel eventually left again for some sort of time-traveling adventure I don’t understand where she died.  However, Rachel Grey entered our world, without the Phoenix force as such, but claiming to have once been the bearer and also the daughter of Scott Summers and Jean Grey from another universe.
Spider-man – I was going to ask, and then decided it’s probably better if the rest of us aren’t subjected to an explanation.
Wolverine – That’s the first smart thing you’ve said all day.
Iron Fist – If she didn’t have the Phoenix force, it doesn’t count.  Clearly the prophecy means the return of the Phoenix as Jean Grey…
Wolverine – Yeah, that happened like a few years ago.
Iron Fist – What?
Wolverine – Yeah.  Some crazy Shi’ar were followin’ the remnants of the Phoenix back to Earth where it woke up this kid Quintin and was lookin’ for a new body.  We tried to stop it but it didn’t work.
Iron Man – I’m going to put it in a box!
Spider-man – Wait, that’s your plan?
Iron Man – Believe me, nothing could get out of this containment field.  We consulted all the experts.  It even has psi-dampeners.
Storm – Professor Xavier, the most powerful telepath in the world, put in psi-blocks in Jean’s mind, personally.  Every hour.  That worked for about three days.
Iron Man – Er…
Wolverine – And we consulted experts on our box too, because you know, we’ve dealt with this before.  We were going to get the Phoenix to possess Emma Frost and put in a container so it could never escape.  You see how well that worked out.
Iron Man – Um, my box is better?
Wolverine – Riiiiight.
Iron Fist – What does this have to do with Jean Grey?
Wolverine – So we realized we couldn’t contain the Phoenix about the time these crazy Shi’ar showed up and decided to turn the Earth into a black hole using some kind of bomb thing.
Cap – What?!?!
Wolverine – Jean Grey resurrected herself, yanked the Phoenix force out of Emma, slapped it around, told it what was what, undid the black hole bomb, and sent it back wherever the Phoenix is supposed to be, and then went back to dead.
Spider-man – The circle of life, X-man style.
Storm – That’s clearly a return, and as Jean Grey.
Iron Fist – That is hard to argue with…
Wolverine – Then somethin’ weird happened with it and the Cuckoos, so it came back even after that.
Bug: Wade, stop staring at Storm’s chest!  She’s a married woman.
Deadpool: Not in my dreams.
Bug: Why do I even bother?
Storm – I still don’t think that’s ten returns.
Wolverine – I’m sure we’ve forgotten somethin’.  But anyway.  You need to talk to yer mystical muckity-mucks about this prophecy thing and you better figure out what yer goin’ to do against Phoenix.
Cap – I’m sure we can figure something out.
Wolverine – Yeah, why don’t you ask Nova about that, when he wakes up.  If you won’t listen to us, at least listen to him.
Cap – Surely there is a way to stop this.
Storm – You can’t do it.  Phoenix will stop herself and there is precious little you can do otherwise.
Cap – But we’re the Avengers!
Wolverine – Have you heard of the Shi’ar Imperial Guard?  She beat all of them.
Cap – We have Thor!
Thor – Verily.
Storm – *sigh* Perhaps an analogy.  Thor, could you kill Captain America?
Thor – I would never…
Storm – Thunder god, I’m not asking if you would, I’m asking if you could and if there was anything Captain America could do to stop you.
Thor – No mortal can stop Thor!
Storm – Thank you.  Captain, this Quintin child Wolverine mentioned.  If you represent the power level of the Avengers, this child is Thor.  Now, Quintin was dead.  When Logan said Phoenix woke Quintin up, he meant that Phoenix resurrected him.  Think about that.  This Phoenix is powerful enough to resurrect someone as powerful as Thor.  Quintin did not suit her needs, so she killed him again.  This Phoenix could resurrect and kill a being like Thor at her whim.  What do you think you and the Avengers are going to do?
Cap – Stay out of this and hope for the best.
Storm – Exactly.
Iron Fist – And I’m going to have some words with the old masters about their prophecies.  This is ridiculous.

Wrap-Up Panels:
Bug: And there you go.  All conflict avoided because the two people who actually had first-hand knowledge of the situation spoke up at the appropriate time and made their point effectively.
Deadpool: Yeah, but who doesn’t want to see the X-men and Avengers fight it out?
Bug: That’s the only reason this storyline exists!  It doesn’t make logical sense.
Deadpool: You are talking to the wrong guy about logical sense.
Bug: You’re right.  This is all about sales, no matter how ridiculous the premise is, or who tortured the mythology becomes.  I still don’t think this will change the ending.
Deadpool: You mean martyr equals more mutants again?
Bug: Yep.  My powers allow me to see when writers have painted themselves into corners.
Deadpool: I guess readers aren’t supposed to notice that.
Bug: I guess not, but many do.  That’s why we’re talking about this now.  And the only way out of that corner is to bust down the walls and let the structure collapse.
Deadpool: I like breaking walls.  Especially fourth walls.
Bug: That’s a great segue-way.
Deadpool: What about a scooter?
Bug: Anyway, that’s what we think should have happened if anyone was going to respect continuity.
Deadpool: Boom!
Bug: And that’s all folks!


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S. J. Drew is an aspiring writer who finally entered the blogosphere to shamelessly promote that writing (as evidenced by the title of the blog). Whether or not this works remains to be seen, but S. J. hopes you are at least entertained. And if you're actually reading this, that's probably a good sign.

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