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John Byrne
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Posted: 05 February 2019 at 3:24pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

I'm looking forward to the new six-issue limited series of X-Men vs Men-X, in which Cyclops and co encounter a mirror universe version of the team. including Tualmu, who can correctly pronounce and translate any spoken phrase, but only backwards.

•••

Crap! Now I have to scrap half of my ELSEWHEN issues!!

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Bill Dowling
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Posted: 05 February 2019 at 4:54pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

Re: Warlock. I liked him. I had no idea why he was on an Earth mutant team. See also: Longshot.”

Claremont just wanted to tell stories he wanted to tell and the X-books were the place he was allowed to tell stories. 

There was a claim made in The New Mutants that Warlock’s mutant ability was the ability to not want to kill his father. Which apparently is something no one else in his species is capable of. 
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Thomas Woods
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Posted: 05 February 2019 at 5:30pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply

My new mutant should be a male character that has the force field
powers of Invisible Woman, without the invisibility.

His powers would instead have a shadow like effect, where he tends to
blend into shadow, more fore cool effect than being hard to see.

Maybe called Darkmatter
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Rick Whiting
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Posted: 05 February 2019 at 11:14pm | IP Logged | 4 post reply

Claremont just wanted to tell stories he wanted to tell and the X-books were the place he was allowed to tell stories.

_________________________________


I'm a huge fan of Claremont's X-Men work, but in hindsight I think that Claremont should have been given a book like The Defenders to write so that he could take all of his ideas and characters that did not fit the X-Men and put them in the Defenders.

Edited by Rick Whiting on 05 February 2019 at 11:16pm
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Thomas Woods
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 1:50am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

Claremont turned into a George Lucas thing to me. I
loved everything up to a certain point and then it
seemed he really got hung up on certain characters at
the detriment of others. Suddenly they were the new hot
shit and could do anything. So I started wishing
someone else would take over.

But as soon as others took over I almost immediately
wanted CC back.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 9:11am | IP Logged | 6 post reply

Claremont just wanted to tell stories he wanted to tell and the X-books were the place he was allowed to tell stories.

••

In a nutshell!

Before I got there, he and Dave had already wandered off into the realms of space opera and demons. In fact, I took as one of my (self-appointed) tasks to keep the book from running off onto those odd, non-mutant related sidings. Not that I was completely successful. Chris used the Annuals, over which I had no influence, to visit extra-dimensional barbarians, vampires and demons.

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Michael Penn
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 2:50pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

I'm not being facetious, but based on both sales and where the X-Men went in the comicbooks and later in the movies, Mr. Claremont told the stories that tons of people also wanted him to tell!
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John Byrne
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 2:57pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

Yup. I’ve been saying for decades that I was obviously holding him back. Also not being facetious.
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Wallace Sellars
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 3:01pm | IP Logged | 9 post reply


 QUOTE:
I'm not being facetious, but based on both sales and where the X-Men
went in the comicbooks and later in the movies, Mr. Claremont told the stories
that tons of people also wanted him to tell!


That is something those of us with 100 or more posts have seen JB state again
and again.
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Wallace Sellars
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 3:02pm | IP Logged | 10 post reply

D'oh! Late again.
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Thomas Woods
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 3:04pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

Yup. I’ve been saying for decades that I was obviously
holding him back. Also not being facetious.

--

I don't know, a lot of people had not jumped on the
bandwagon yet, but I am sure the issues you were
involved in got people talking. And they are still
considered some of the most classic story lines Marvel
ever put out.
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Michael Penn
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 4:00pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

As far as I've ever seen, JB has never withheld an iota credit for the X-Men's success from Mr. Claremont -- and, at least during his tenure on the comicbook, he's consistently included Terry Austin as being just as responsible.
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Bill Dowling
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 5:46pm | IP Logged | 13 post reply

“I'm not being facetious, but based on both sales and where the X-Men went in the comicbooks and later in the movies, Mr. Claremont told the stories that tons of people also wanted him to tell!”

That’s certainly true. My only point was that Warlock was a symptom of Claremont just doing whatever story he wanted to tell in the X-books, regardless of fit. I loved Warlock (when Bill Sienkiewicz was drawing him...he doesn’t really work for me otherwise), but he doesn’t really make sense as a New Mutant. 

I once met Bill Sienkiewicz at a little convention in Pittsburgh. He was doing sketches and no one else was around. I think he had just done a Nick Fury book or something, so he was a bit surprised when I asked for a sketch of Warlock. It was fascinating watching him draw Warlock. It really gave me a new appreciation for what he was doing when he drew Warlock and Magus. Best $10 I ever spent. 
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Brian Miller
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 5:49pm | IP Logged | 14 post reply

Art Adams did a pretty good Warlock. 
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Bill Dowling
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 5:50pm | IP Logged | 15 post reply

I'm a huge fan of Claremont's X-Men work, but in hindsight I think that Claremont should have been given a book like The Defenders to write so that he could take all of his ideas and characters that did not fit the X-Men and put them in the Defenders.”

That would have been a great idea. I wonder two things:
1) would Defenders have been the breakout hit instead of X-Men then?
2) for JB: do you think you’d have had a better working relationship with Mr. Claremont if you removed the “this isn’t an X-Men story”-style tension from the relationship?
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Bill Dowling
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Posted: 06 February 2019 at 5:55pm | IP Logged | 16 post reply

Art Adams did a pretty good Warlock.“

I felt like Art Adams did a pretty good character that they called Warlock, but he wasn’t doing any of the things that Sienkiewicz was doing when he drew Warlock, so it didn’t feel like Warlock to me. 

It’s kind of like when someone else does Hellboy. I’m sure JB could do an awesome drawing of a demon with shaved horns and a fist of doom, but it wouldn’t be Hellboy to me because so much of Hellboy is tied to Mignola’s style for me. (I think maybe—maybe—P. Craig Russel might be able to do a Hellboy that felt like Hellboy to me,... but it would be weird)

I’m perfectly happy to admit that this is a very idiosyncratic thing for me, though, and I’m more than happy that other people don’t have such a weird hang up about stuff like that. 
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Andrew Bitner
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Posted: 07 February 2019 at 8:35am | IP Logged | 17 post reply

If "holding him back" means co-plotting the stories that EVERY adaptation of X-Men has gone to (i.e., Dark Phoenix, Days of Future Past, etc.), then that simply can't be true.
It took time for fans to realize what was going on and start getting into the books. Heaven knows, I became an X-fan after JB's run because I just wasn't plugged into comics at that point but a friend was--and I didn't have a place to buy comics until well after JB's last issue of X-MEN. (That said, I was there for JB's run on FF from very, very early on.)
Is there a storyline from any of the artists' runs after JB that's been nearly as memorable AND adapted as the ones he co-created? Sure, there have been characters, but stories? I can't think of a single one.

Edited by Andrew Bitner on 07 February 2019 at 8:37am
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Eric Sofer
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Posted: 07 February 2019 at 10:43am | IP Logged | 18 post reply

I believe Mr. Byrne's comment about his holding Claremont back is purely practical. Take out any possible aesthetic; after Mr. Byrne left X-Men, the sales increased considerably and more X-books began to get published.

There is no way to factually determine what the numbers would have done had Mr. Byrne STAYED on X-Men - but after he left, buyers seemed to want more.

Myself, I like to ponder what happens if X-Factor starts its run soon after X-Men #138, as written and drawn by Mr. Byrne. Bobby, Hank, and Warren decide to get with Scott to keep him from spiraling into a self-destructive period. 
"He's my best friend... best friend to ALL of us. We have to try to help him stay active. I can afford a headquarters... maybe we can even reactivate the Champions."
"Incisively insightful, Warren. I would be willing to forestall my Avengers career to assist our ocular companion."
"Yeah, he's pretty down. I bet this would help."
Get Alex and Lorna - maybe as X-Factor, maybe as the Champions - and check that interaction. I feel it could have been a best seller (possibly FAR outselling X-Men) and been awfully entertaining.
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David Schmidt
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Posted: 07 February 2019 at 11:20am | IP Logged | 19 post reply

I kept on reading X-Men after JB left even if I was disappointed. But I quite enjoyed it as I loved Dave Cockrum, Paul Smith and John Romita Jr art...

But I began to think characters was drifting from what they were supposed to be. Mohawk Storm? Good Magneto? Invulnerable Wolverine?
And it got more and more and more confusing.

For me the turning point for me was Madelyne Pryor and then Cyclops marrying her, Rachel Summers coming from the future, then Jean Grey coming back from the dead, etc... And it got worse.
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Rebecca Jansen
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Posted: 07 February 2019 at 11:37am | IP Logged | 20 post reply

From where I was I date the direct sales wholesaler's advertising 100 case lots to general fans, for the purpose of investment, to the comics dated March 1981... that would be X-Men #143 and Daredevil #169. From that point it got up to cases of 1000 advertised. The no-brainer 'investment' issues were any #1 (duh), Daredevil, X-Men, Spider-Man and Teen Titans, and of course various mini-series like Wolverine (I remember seeing a case of 1000 of #1 of that, all direct editions, someone local had ordered from Styx, a Canadian distributor). New characters introduced, special number, a title change, or a cross-over might get a reaction from such investors, but a regular creator/team telling a good story would go unnoticed. I would have to think this is where any increase in circulation at this time came from. Before it would've been tied directly to actual readers preferences but from this point on it becomes untethered from that. A couple specific distributors/wholesalers I remember offering these case lot investments were Westfield's and Capital via ads in Comic Buyer's Guide weekly paper and their own order catalogs. I'm sure there were a couple of other big ones doing it as well.

As a collector I would think visions of cases of thousands of never read comics in storage circa late 1980 onward would keep me from ever paying much for a lot of these, but possibly the regular newsstand editions would be rarer. It's too bad it happened at a time that gave Claremont enough power to sort of befoul his own nest in my opinion. I value many comics he wrote into the earliest '80s, not just the ones with JB, and then it just goes self-indulgently darker with an excessively cutesy topping at times to the point of parody. Some good ideas still at times but the execution isn't as focused. Didn't matter with the caselot investors, X-Men, mutants, the number 1 or first appearance, that had the odds to pay off with them.
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Jeffrey Rice
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Posted: 07 February 2019 at 6:48pm | IP Logged | 21 post reply

There was a Fantastic Four-X-Men Miniseries written by Claremont. X-Men was pretty far gone at that point, but it was clear Claremont could tell some good FF stories. Too bad he different trade books then.
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Adam Schulman
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Posted: 07 February 2019 at 7:01pm | IP Logged | 22 post reply

"Rachel Summers coming from the future"

That was when I started wanting to get off the X-train. 
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 07 February 2019 at 7:05pm | IP Logged | 23 post reply

I thought Claremont/Romita Jr still resembled the classic team and there were some enjoyable tales in that run (though the reader had to wade through really non-X-Men fare  -- such as the sorceror Kulan Gath altering all reality with a spell -- to get to those tales). Where I felt disconnected was pretty much when Jr Jr jumped ship, with the mutant massacre when there were wholesale changes to the team. Suddenly Nightcrawler, Colossus and Kitty were gone, we'd already lost Cyclops, and the team comprised a jarring collection of odds and ends, including Longshot, Dazzler, Havok and Psylocke. It just felt like a new team and a team that was not the X-Men. I stopped reading.
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Brian Miller
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Posted: 07 February 2019 at 8:30pm | IP Logged | 24 post reply

That’s where I quit too, Peter. I did come back when Jim Lee started penciling, tho. 
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Steven Myers
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Posted: 07 February 2019 at 9:42pm | IP Logged | 25 post reply

I was thinking of a mutant code-named Chop, who can take an amazingly large stack of paper and cut it in half with a paper-cutter.

Well, that's my real-life mutant power, anyway. Honest!

As for Claremont, his X-Men has highs and lows, but I've never been able to read anyone else's for very long.
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