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-- Phoenix

Appearing in "Phoenix!"

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Synopsis for "Phoenix!"

The X-Men are chopping down a dying tree when suddenly a large firebird appears in the sky above them! And from out of the firebird falls a man - Cyclops! Rogue catches him, and Storm tells Nightcrawler to take him to the infirmary, but he belays that. It's too late for such action - Dark Phoenix has returned! Professor X summons them to the study.

Professor X is not convinced - he sensed Jean's death,[1] but not her rebirth. He puts on Cerebro to look for traces of Jean, but Cerebro overloads, knocking him out and putting him on the brink of death! Nightcrawler teleports him to the infirmary while Kitty inspects Cerebro - to find that all the safety interlocks were disengaged and the settings reversed! Someone made Professor Xavier do that to himself! In the confusion, Phoenix slips out from within Cyclops, who collapses. The X-Men attack, but do so singly, and Phoenix defeats them all - all that is except Wolverine, who sees no point in attacking. Phoenix leaves to do some 'errands', promising to return to finish what she started.

Kitty goes to raise the Starjammers on the comms, but when she finally gets through its to see Corsair telling them they are under attack by Phoenix -- and then the Starjammer explodes! They next try to contact the Avengers, but their conversation with Captain America is cut short as all of New York City ceases to exist!

In the infirmary Professor X is stable but in bad shape, while Cyclops is in 'perfect health' physically but otherwise deteriorating rapidly. Cyclops, however, is looking down on his body from above, and he sees it charred and blistered.[2] He drifts towards the light. Suddenly, he can sense Jean's presence through their psychic rapport, he knows she's here.[3] And then a woman appears, but as he gets closer, he realizes that woman isn't Jean. She tells him to go back, and sends him hurtling back towards his body - he wakes up realizing it was his mom!

Cyclops examines himself and finds no burns. He finally starts to piece it together - maybe he hasn't been burned either time and maybe Phoenix isn't real either! Cyclops reviews the evidence, and realizes only one foe could possibly be responsible. He rushes off to prepare, knowing that convincing the other X-Men will be difficult.

Ten minutes later he rushes into where Storm and Colossus are, but the X-Men don't see Cyclops - they see Phoenix! Storm uses wind to bring Cyclops close where Colossus can swing at him, and Cyclops gets hit hard, cracking some ribs. Cyclops manages to turn the tables enough to make his escape, but Kitty tackles him through the wall - Cyclops throws himself off the balcony and Kitty instinctively phases them through the floor and into ... the danger room!

Nightcrawler ports down to the control room, but Cyclops has it booby-trapped, and it knocks him out. He puts Kitty to sleep with a nerve pinch.[4] The other X-Men enter, but Cyke has control of the Danger Room! He ambushes them with a sudden chasm, forcing the fliers to rescue the others, and hides in a jungle environment.

Elsewhere, Madelyne Pryor is dressed as Dark Phoenix, and is utterly confused as to where she is. The villain, Mastermind, reveals himself to her, and proceeds to tell her his evil plan and why he seeks revenge. He then tortures her by making himself look like Scott, stealing a kiss, and laughing at her reaction as he turns back to his natural form.

Cyclops is being hunted by the X-Men, but better knowledge of the terrain allows him to outwit his pursuers. However, its an open stretch to the door of the danger room, and the fliers come after him. But Storm throws off her lightning bolt, and as Cyke nails her he wonders if she's figured it out. Rogue catches Storm and lands between Cyclops and the door - but he specifically prepared some poppies designed to knock her out - and he wide-angle blasts the field she's landed in, sending poppy dust into the air. Rogue collapses. Cyclops picks Rogue up and exits the danger room.

Cyclops shuts down all the mansion surveillance equipment so Mastermind won't know where he is, and then takes Rogue to the infirmary. There he wakes her with a vial[5] and quickly touches her hand to Professor X's forehead. Suddenly telepathic, Cyclops persuades her he's not Phoenix. The remainder of the X-Men appear, but before they can attack 'Phoenix', Cyke has Rogue patch him through to the X-Men, and convinces them of the truth. At that moment, Phoenix appears behind them!

Cyclops moves between the X-Men and Phoenix and announces he knows its an illusion, and therefore it can't hurt him. Suddenly, he clutches his chest and falls down. But Wolverine heard the shot - a gun with a silencer. He lets Storm know the enemy is here, and Storm summons up a monsoon which forces everyone to grab hold of whatever is available. When the Storm subsides, Mastermind has been blown back into a wall and is unconscious. Wolverine pops his claws and goes for the kill, but Storm stops him. Scott gets up and sees Madelyne, and rushes to her - thankfully she's alright.

Later. Scott Summers takes flowers to Jean's tombstone. He's wearing a tux, and he makes his peace with Jean's ghost. Later that afternoon, Scott and Madelyne get married.

Solicit Synopsis

"From the Ashes." Dark Phoenix Returns--? Double-sized. Of course.


  • This is a double-size (48-page) issue, although it does not announce itself as such.
  • This is the 20th-anniversary issue.


  • The credits appear on the last page.
  • This is the first-anniversary issue of X-Men - the 10th anniversary having been missed because in 1973 X-Men was a reprint title.
  • This is the 20th-anniversary issue (they actually missed by 2 months). The first page begins with: "Twenty years ago, more or less, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby created the Uncanny X-Men." The 20-year mark was actually September (Sept 1963-Sept 1983).
  • "Uncanny" does not appear on the cover - its place was taken by the 20th-anniversary announcement. This is because the title started as "X-Men", and thus it's X-Men's 20th anniversary, not "Uncanny X-Men's" 20th anniversary.

See Also

Recommended Reading


  1. Yes, this is still pre-retcon when it really was Jean who died in X-Men #137
  2. This is meant to be incongruous - this is our first hint things are not what they appear.
  3. Post-retcon, we just have to assume Cyclops is either lying to himself, or deluded somehow. Because Jean most definitely isn't there.
  4. Too much Star Trek on the brain. This is almost certainly inspired by Spock's similar attack mode.
  5. probably ammonia

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