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Jean Grey

X-Men Legends
by yo go re

What's in a name?

Jean Grey can read and project thoughts and stun opponents with pure psionic force.

You know, it really says something that, in creating an entirely new world where the old divisions between good and bad have been shuffled around and literally anything you can imagine is possible, Marvel still couldn't come up with a codename for Jean Grey. Now, obviously "Marvel Girl" doesn't turn into "Marvel Woman" as pleasingly as "Invisible Girl" turns into "Invisible Woman," but there had to be something. How about just calling her "Marvel"? Consider this a thought experiment: pretend Marvel offers you a gig writing X-Men and you can do whatever you want, the only caveat being that Jean has to be on the team and you have to give her a supranym that'll stick (and nothing "Phoenix"-related). What do you call her?

AoA Jean Greay looks a lot like Black Widow did at the time, thanks to the short and somewhat spiky red hair. Of course, Black Widow never had a huge blue tattoo on the side of her face, so there are some differences. What was it about Apocalypse taking over the world that made face tattoos all the rage? Just the general sense of "we're all going to die"?

Surprisingly, Jean's got an entirely new sculpt. That makes sense for the upper body, with its bustier and a weird "jacket" that seems to consist of nothing more than a collar, shoulderpads, and sleeves, but surely they could have used existing parts for the rest of the body, right? Coulda but didn'a. Her costume is sculpted with more small wrinkles than the existing bodies have ever had, and there are seams on her pants. Considering the dark colors of her costume, it's easy to overlook these details, but hey, good on Hasbro for going beyond expectations.

Actually, let's talk about those colors for a minute. "Age of Apocalypse" was produced so quickly, it seemed like no two artists drew Jean's costume the same way - in particular, the red panel in the center sometimes constinued down onto her thighs, sometimes was narrow, sometimes was wide, etc. The weird thing here is that the red doesn't continue onto her back, meaning it goes under her pelvis and then just stops. What, does Wolverine need a map? Is he like a bumblebee, and needs bright colors to act as directional arrows? No wonder even in the AoA reality, she still ended up falling for Cyclops. The reds don't match up very well on opposite sides of the chest joints, because of what color they're painted above - light pink skin vs. dark blue and black costume.

Weapon Y may have a new body, but she's got the usual articulation: head, neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, chest, hips, thighs, knees, and ankles. The shoulders and ankles are slightly stiff, so be careful moving those. She doesn't have any accessories, because mental powers don't translate to physical objects unless you're Psylocke. They could have given her the yellow belts and straps she was sometimes wearing in the art, but those were even less consistent than the red shape.

This series' Build-A-Figure is Sugar Man, and jean's got the torso, face, and suspenders. He's a weird character.

There was an "Age of Apocalypse" Jean Grey released by ToyBiz, but that was in 1997, way before Marvel Legends was a thing. It was just a repainted Mystique, and was... not great. It's nice that we've finally got a good one.

-- 08/17/20


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