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Quote1 Hear me, X-Men! No longer am I the woman you knew! I am fire! And life incarnate! Now and forever -- I am PHOENIX! Quote2
Jean Grey

Appearing in "Like a Phoenix, from the Ashes"

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Synopsis for "Like a Phoenix, from the Ashes"

Jean Grey is at the helm of the space shuttle transporting the X-Men back to Earth in the midst of a solar flare with lethal amounts of radiation. She attempts to make an emergency landing at JFK Airport. But the out-of-control spacecraft skids off the runway and crashes into Jamaica Bay, practically disintegrating into pieces. The X-Men and Peter Corbeau all rise to the surface and Scott immediately begins looking for signs of Jean. Everyone is shocked, however, when Jean suddenly flies out of the water in a new costume, proclaiming herself to be power incarnate and calling herself “Phoenix.” But no sooner does she majestically rise into the air, she faints and plunges back into the water below her. Cyclops pulls Jean to shore. Everyone tries to make themselves as inconspicuous as possible before the authorities arrive on the scene. It’s unnecessary, however, as the Professor uses his mental powers to erase everyone’s minds so that no-one recalls the X-Men being there.

Sometime later, Wolverine admits to himself that he has feelings for Jean and purchases flowers to bring to her in the hospital. When he arrives, however, he surreptitiously discards them before the other X-Men (whom he's surprised to find in the waiting room) can see. As the group awaits news of Jean, Scott fears the worst, wondering what he will do if she doesn't pull through. His fears are allayed though when Jean's doctors enter the room and inform them that she will make a full recovery. The news elates the X-Men, none more so than Scott, who slips away to an unoccupied room and privately breaks down in tears.

Professor X decides that the X-Men have earned a much-needed vacation (despite Wolverine's protests to the contrary). Sean then pipes up with just a suggestion: He has received a letter from Ireland from his solicitor, Mr. Flaherty, who has informed Sean that he’s inherited the Cassidy ancestral home. Sean invites the team to visit it with him. The Professor thinks this a great idea, so Sean, Kurt, Peter, Ororo, and Wolverine travel to Sean's new castle, Cassidy Keep. (Cyclops remains behind to be near Jean.)

Arriving in Ireland, the X-Men are unaware that they are being watched by Sean's evil cousin, Black Tom, who is also a mutant. He tells the groundskeeper, Eamon O'Donnell, to prepare “cousin Sean” and his friends for the trap he has set for them. When Eamon refuses, Tom reminds him that he has hostages he won’t hesitate to kill if he dares defy him. Eamon has no choice but to comply.

Reluctantly, Eamon welcomes the X-Men are welcomed into the Keep and are escorts them to their rooms. Nobody is aware that small creatures watch them from the shadows. Sometime later, just as they are all heading down to the dining hall for dinner, a trap door opens beneath them. They fall into an enclosed chamber before Black Tom and his partner, the Juggernaut. Before anyone can react, Storm suddenly breaks down in a panic and screams, having succumbed to a crippling bout of claustrophobia.


  • This story continues into the next issue.
  • The "Jean" who arises out of the water is a Phoenix Force duplicate of her, while the real Jean Grey is contained in a recuperative cocoon at the bottom of Jamaica Bay. Therefore, this is is the real Jean's last appearance until Avengers #263, Fantastic Four #286, and X-Factor #1.
  • Storm first displays her trick of running an electrical current through the unstable molecules of her costume, reversing the polarity and enabling it to instantaneously transform into her street clothes (or vice versa).
  • Nightcrawler uses Tony Stark's Image Inducer to disguise himself as the actor Errol Flynn while at the airport crash site and in the hospital. Nightcrawler loves Flynn's swashbuckling films and persona, as seen in stories such as Bizarre Adventures #27 and Nightcrawler.
  • This is the first published story depicting Wolverine's attraction to Jean Grey, although he flirts with her in previous issues, such as cutting her dress very short in X-Men #98. Classic X-Men #1 establishes that the two are mutually attracted from immediately after Wolverine joining the team.
  • references: X-Men #100 and X-Men #97


  • With this issue, Marvel raised the cover price to 30 cents.

See Also

Recommended Reading

  • This is the conclusion of a four-part story-line involving the Sentinels and the X-Men's return from their Space Station base that began in X-Men #98-X-Men #100.
  • This is the start of a three-part storyline featuring Juggernaut and Black Tom that continues next issue and concludes in X-Men #103.

Links and References