Every saga has a begining, so I'm told. 'Course, at the same time, every
saga has a creator. And would ya believe I got to talk to one? Scott Lobdell,
the creator of Generation X, was willing to answer my many questions about
Generation X, such as things about how it was created, why some plots were
never finished, and what he thinks of the current run.
off, I've gotta ask you, does it surprise you at all that Gen X has survived
the past five years, even after you left?
On the contrary, I would have been surprised if they hadn't. Chris
and I put a lot of thought and love into the creation of these characters
-- each rich with potential, on their own and in their interaction with
each other (and that's not even counting their potentially forthcoming
roles as died in wool super heroes! One of my favorite storylines from
twenty-plus years ago was BEAST joining the AVENGERS . . . one of the ultimate
outsiders making the mainstream. I often thought about how much fun it
was going to be when one of the kids ultimately made it into the Avengers
-- or became the next leader of HYDRA?!). All in all, I think the characters
have barely had their surface scratch . . . yet.
What was the reason for your decision
to leave Gen X?
My workload was such that I felt I needed to concentrate on the two
CORE X-MEN titles. I was under the mistaken impression at the time that
MARVEL/BOB wanted the core titles to grow and strengthen. As is evident
since my departure, they were much more interested in the RETRO-70s nonsense
that has seized the rest of the industry by the throat and refuses to let
go. Having said this, I thought it was time to leave GEN X . . . I like
CREATING new things and handing them off to others . . . it's a way to
keep growing in life.
Do you and Bachalo still talk to each
Rarely . . . but ONLY because we're each involved in our own things.
We often talk about working together again. That is, he talks and I beg!
What do you think of Jay Faerber's run,
or have you even looked?
Jay clearly has a lot of passion for the book, and that is admirable!
I think in a few years time he will become a great writer. Do I agree with
everything he's doing? No, but I do think his heart is in the right place
and I look forward to seeing what he plans to do farther down the line.
What do you think about the current
happenings in the series, like Adrienne Frost the new headmistress, human
students, and the new costumes?
Mercifully I have finally broken myself of the X habit -- occasionally
picking up issues while on a subway ride --so I don't have a lot of insight
into the current book. My initial feeling is that there was no need to
intro another Frost sister as Emma is interesting enough on her own. Re:
The human students . . . this was actually one of the first ideas behind
GEN X, mainstream them at the academy . . . secret identities, etc . .
. etc . . . etc. Jay seems to have a great handle on things. Re: Costumes?
Ugh. Like they don't have enough of an identity problem as Jr. X-Men, now
they need to dress like them?
Do you recall how the design for the
original costumes came about?
Just that Chris and I wanted to make sure they looked NOTHING LIKE
the previous versions of X-costumes. I remember being bowled over the first
time I saw them! (Let's be honest, is there a more talented design guy
in the business than Chris Bachalo? With the possible exception of Joe
The next few questions are the annoying
ones fanboys have had their minds on since you left, so I'm going to ask
about what your original plans were and what would have happened if you
had gotten to tie up the plots. First off, what was the plan with Chevy?
Since we weren't allowed to bring in human students, the idea was to
give the kids a human handy guy from whom they would have to hide their
identity -- unaware that he himself had his own secret to hide as one of
the killers of Dennis Hogan of X-MEN PRIME. It would have been a story
of redemption and teen suicide.
And who was the guy talking with him
Without the issue in front of me, I have no immediate memory just now.
I do have a vauge recollection that it might might might have been M's
father...but I can't recall, I'm sorry.
Was the Mondo in #25 a clone? And did
we ever even MEET the real Mondo?
Not a clone as much as a sort of vegatron -- a creation of Black Tom
Cassidy. We met the original, but the kids never did. I was going to do
a scene at the end of OP Z, where SEAN was going to go to MONDO's island
and get the real MONDO. But he was going to see MONDO alive and happy in
that MONDO way of his, and make a decision not to involve poor MONDO is
the horror of life-off-the-island. It was going to be poignant.
Who created Blink and was there even
a chance in heck of her coming back when you were writing the series?
Joe Mad and I created Blink. How can you not love this girl? And while
NO, there was no plan to bring her back, there was certainly a way to when
you consider her essentially off panel death and weird powers! I say .
. . BRING BACK BLINK!
was YOUR plan for the revelation of M?
Well, it unfolded pretty much the way I wanted it too up until the
moment that M split. From BEFORE her first appearance, the plan was to
have her split after that wall fell on her . . . they would go through
the wreckage and find the TWINS! After that, EMMA and SEAN were going to
be forced to make a truly difficult decision: Do you allow the TWINS to
stay together as the supper powered M--thereby putting their lives in constant
danger--or do you force them to stay apart and live relatively normal lives
(except that would mean the autistic one would never know the freedom she
enjoyed as M! Ahhhh, the tragedy.) As you can see, they strayed as FAR
away from the original idea as possible.
Why is Emplate called 'Emplate'?
It was short for TEMPLATE--the idea was going to be, as we saw in his
first appearance, that he was going to be something of a tabula rasa .
. . so that as he feasted on the genetic marrow of mutants, he would eventually
take their powers from them as well. Imagine a vampire who could become
the person he bit, so to speak.
The hard part about EMPLATE too, is that he only looks cool when Chris
draws him. Like SUGAR MAN.
Who/what was Penny going to turn out
Penny was short for PENANCE -- the only word GATEWAY spoke when he
dropped her off after kidnaping her from EMPLATE. But it wasn't her name,
it was GATEWAY explaining this was his penance for his part in the murder
of the Hellions. It would ultimately have been revealed that her name was
YVETTE, and that she was a sixteen-year-old survivor of the warring in
Yugoslavia. She was deaf since birth, which explained her childlike naivete
as well as he inability to communicate with others. She was supposed to
be the first deaf mutant . . . I think it is kind of sad that she was never
allowed to be who she is.
What happened to "Mere," Monet's mom?
No memories of this, sorry.
I heard a rumor that Mr. Bachalo and
you intended M's dad to be obsessed with the number 2. Is that true?
Yes, it was going to be because of the TWINS who--as far as he knew,
had disappeared . . . unaware they were actually M. (We see this obsession
in his first appearance . . . the clues are there.)
Was Monet Bishop's mom in your stories?
No, that was just me being a big ole' tease!
Okay, back to "normal" questions. I
heard you created Buff and Refrax. How'd you come up with the ideas of
Untrue. Eric Blakeney came up with them . . . if ANYTHING, I might
have named them.
What did you think of the telefilm?
I recall it as being as good as they could, considering a telemovie
Have you been contacted at all by Fox
to help them out with the new tv series?
Why would those brilliant television people need a comic book writer
like me? Hee hee . . .
there any other choices for Gen X headmasters originally?
I was always looking to replace BANSHEE with BEAST after the first
two years . . . just temporarily. But other than that, no . . . SEAN was
always my FIRST CHOICE! What a cool character! And Emma?! Gotta love her!
How about members. Any ideas that got
Nothing springs to mind, sorry.
Who would have been the team's first
official couple had you stayed on?
On his twentieth birthday...Jono and Emma! (You have to figure, we've
already seen his fondness for blonds. And Bad Girl Emma wouldn't be able
to resist the tempation of dating someone way younger. In her defense,
though, she would feel that she is genuinely, for the first time in her
life, attracted to someone for his mind! Trust me -- it would have been
amazing, unexpected, yet totally believable at the time!)
Do you think you'll ever come back and
write a Gen X story, even just an annual or a special?
I don't see that on the horizon. I've always been a big fan of moving
forward. If I have any legacy at all, I'd like it to be that I'm Stan Lee
to Jay's Chris Claremont . . . that Jay can bring these characters through
seventeen years of really great stories!