It would be an understatement to say that there's a lot going on in "Wolverine and the X-Men." Since the title relaunched under the hands of writer Jason Latour, a number of new concepts have been introduced -- including a new take on the Phoenix -- and many more elements revisited under a new lens, such as The World, Fantomex, the concept of the Jean Grey School having graduate students and much more. Even more intriguing, a title called "Wolverine and the X-Men" likely has a lot coming down the line as "Death of Wolverine" gets closer to release.
With his first arc winding down, Latour joined X-POSITION to answer reader questions about the effect Wolverine's current status in the Marvel U will have on the title and the school, Storm and Wolverine's relationship, the importance of Evan to the overall story, the resurrection of the Phoenix and much more. Plus, he compares "Wolverine and the X-Men's" cast to characters in John Hughes films!
CBR News: Jason, a common thread in this week's questions was how the current "Wolverine and the X-Men" run will start to be affected by the events in "Wolverine," as well as the announced "Death of Wolverine" storyline. When can readers expect some of the effects to show up in the book, and how will it influence the current students and faculty at the Jean Grey School?
Jason Latour: Well, with the first arc we were at the whim of comic book time in the sense that the story that unfolded over the first 6 issues really was only a couple of days worth of adventure. Obviously the whole Marvel U doesn't move at the same pace, in that sometimes people tell stories that jump forward days or weeks or months within the same issue, much less an arc. So currently, and for the first three issues of our second arc (#6-9) we'll continue to be behind the rest of the Marvel U, but rapidly building towards catching up with the events of "The Death of Wolverine." By issue #10 we'll be up to speed, and hopefully have added layers to the stories you've been reading over in "Wolverine" or the other X-Books by then.
As for the effect Logan's death will have? Well, on some level every step of the second arc will be an exploration of that question. Logan knows it's coming, sooner or later, and a big focus of this next arc is how he'll go about readying himself and the people around him for a world without Wolverine.
Storm and Wolverine's relationship was also cause for concern for a few readers -- namely because in "Wolverine," it's already ended. What has the experience been like for you to slowly chart that breakup in "Wolverine and the X-Men?"
Well it's bittersweet. I really hope my fondness for this relationship shines through, because I love writing them together. It seems very unfortunate that they seem to have finally truly fallen into each other's arms, now at a point when it just might be too late to see it bloom into what it could be. But even if Logan's death weren't around the corner, I think it would be pretty clear that the responsibilities they've taken on are more than a bit prohibitive of their own desires. So the real question we'll be dealing with is can they reconcile their romance with those responsibilities? Why not?
With that in mind, issue #8 will look to address those issues, as Logan and Ororo go on a long overdue date. One that, thanks to the strange properties of The World, will see them spend a lot of time together. We may know what's coming to some degree with these two, but trust me, there's a lot of texture to be added and lots of seeds to be planted yet.
Before jumping to more specific reader questions, readers also are curious about Evan and the mythology of Apocalypse. How integral a role does Evan play during your run?
Well, the future version of Evan we saw on page 1 of this volume wasn't chosen at random. That flashforward is something that was very purposeful. So as this first arc winds up, we'll begin to see just how important that mythos is. It's something I plan to deal with for quite some time.
Paddy kicks off this week with a question about the Hellfire Academy kids and the club as a whole.
In the previous volume, the Hellfire Academy (namely Mystique & Sabertooth) escaped with the young potential villains, claiming they'd show them the ropes...Will this be explored further?
No real plans for Hellfire kids at present. I'm pretty interested in seeing where Kade Kilgore ended up after the Siege Perilous, but I think it's a bit too soon to retread that ground. As for the state of the entity that is the Hellfire club itself? Pay attention to issue #9.
Next up is The Big G with a few questions about the current status of the younger generation of X-Men.
Hey Jason! First off let me say I loved your run (despite being way to brief) on Winter Soldier, so I was excited to see you writing the X-Men. Was a little skeptical after issue one but you've been slowly winning me over. So props! Now to the questions!
1) From the first issue we've seen that both Hellion and Rockslide seem kinda miffed that despite all the shenanigans and craziness they've been through in recent years that they've been kinda left behind. We saw that Rockslide might be kinda lonely that his BFF Anole became a Fortune 500 CEO and that Hellion might be a wee bit jealous of Quire's "future" as the Phoenix where as his own future is much less certain . And now with Faithful John Break-Sky on the scene with dark wings and dark words about the future the two have busted each others jaw and hands. What can we expect from Julian and Santo going forward? Is it going to limited to just this opening arc or will they have a recurring impact on stories down the road? And going back to Julian's "jealousy" of Quentin, how do differentiate the two when they both have incredibly similar mutant powers, personalities and attitudes?
Hellion and Rockslide have been classmates a long time, and while I think their bond is one that's genuine, I also think it's important to remember that they're still forming who they are as people. As with anyone, context has a big role to play in that. They've now seen what Hellion feels is firm evidence of a really horrible future that's coming straight at them. It's a threat that could push them apart, or possibly bring them closer together. Either way it's the tip of a potential iceberg and a very real reminder that being one of the X-Men is a lot more than just history books and games of snaps in the courtyard. So even if this little dust up seems resolved at the end of the arc, and I'm not saying it is, it should be interesting to see what effect the pressure of that knowledge has on them moving forward.
As for Julian and Quentin... those are interesting thoughts. I'd also keep in mind that they both now have very complicated relationships with Evan. Seems like there's a lot of potential for something a little bigger and more heated than a shoving match there.
2) Going back to issue #2 we saw that Idie was calling Hisako out on her new position of authority as a Grad Student. Are these two going to be butting heads down the line more?
That's possible. Hisako wants to be one of the X-Men. She feels she's been one since Logan first teamed up with her. But many of the students around her, who haven't seen her fighting alongside Wolverine, only see someone their own age giving orders. That's particularly true of Idie, who is beginning to wonder if there's any kind of order to this school at all. The question is can they resolve it? I like to think there's hope they can, but time will tell...
Devon has a query about Storm's role in the book moving forward as headmistress of the school.
I've really been warming up to the relationship between Storm and Logan over the past few issues. However due to future plans of Wolverine's death, it will be ending soon. Do you have any plans to incorporate the impact this will have on Storm as well as the students?
Storm's integral to where we're headed, but possibly in ways that might surprise you. When you're talking about running and protecting a school, she's clearly one of the few people who could command the respect one needs from both mutantkind and the world at large. Seems like a sure bet that she'll step in and take Logan's place, right? But this is now a world where Wolverine can actually die. So what can you really count on anymore?
The aptly-named Phoenix Egg has a question about the current status of the Phoenix and how it's come back.
Will you be addressing the manner in which the Phoenix has come back after Hope and Wanda wished it out of existence? Do you know already how it will be brought back?
Yep. I've got a plan. But what interests me more than someone wielding that power is the impact the threat of wielding it makes.
Windrider hopes to find out more when it comes to Fantomex's presence in the series and at the school.
1) Fantomex and Storm, considering their very different personalities, sounds like an interesting dynamic for this book (kind of gives me a Storm/Gambit kind of vibe). Being that Storm has had very little interaction with him in the past how do you envision their relationship and interactions once he joins the JGS faculty? What role do you think Storm could see him in at the school (i.e. - combat instructor)?
Fantomex's presence at the school, and in particular his actions at the end of the first arc, are something that Storm will take notice of. Will there be friction? That seems likely. But it's also possible that they may also be alike in ways that make them both very uncomfortable.
Finally, Matt D has somewhat of an odd request that involves some classic '80s films.
Can you match up the current cast of Wolverine and the X-Men with the Breakfast Club? Also, when do we get a detention issue?
Hmm, I dunno. I guess Idie is obviously Molly Ringwald? But now I'm thinking about John Hughes movies, and I keep seeing Kid Gladiator as Chet in "Weird Science." Logan as "Uncle Buck." Or even better, John Candy as Wolverine.
Special thanks to Jason Latour for taking on this week's questions!
Keeping on the Wolverine track, next week's X-Position guest is the prolific Paul Cornell, ready to discuss all things involving the "Wolverine" ongoing and the current "3 Months to Die" arc. Got a question for Paul abut Wolverine's current villainous status and his countdown to death? Go ahead and send 'em in an e-mail with the subject line "X-Position" or if 140 character questions are more your speed, try Twitter. Either way, make sure those questions are in by Friday! Do it to it!