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The X-Force Love Triangle: Who's Right for Psylocke?

Will the passionate kiss shared by Psylocke and Fantomex lead Betsy to reconsider her relationship with Angel?

If there's one Marvel series that has been consistently entertaining it's got to be Rick Remender's current X-Force book. Not only does Remender provide his readers with suspense at every turn and a peek at the Age of Apocalypse universe that long time X-Men readers will appreciate, he also writes a killer love triangle. That's right, I said it, love triangle. With love. And romance.

In a recent editorial, staff writer Corey Schroeder touched on many of the love triangles that have appeared in Marvel books (and trust us, there have been a plethora of them), but we thought that that the Psylocke/Warren/Fantomex love triangle in X-Force is so interesting, that it was worth taking a closer look.

Since the beginning of the series, Psylocke has been romantically tied to Archangel (both of whom are X-Force teammates). Throughout the series, however, (and particularly recently) we have seen Fantomex (another member of the X-Force team) demonstrate some attraction to Betsy, which, had gone seemingly unnoticed by her -- until now. The cover to the most recent issue of Uncanny X-Force #12 portrayed Psylocke and Fantomex locked in a kiss, a scene which spills into the pages of the issue. But was this kiss inevitable or unwarranted?

== TEASER ==

Perhaps the scene in this issue was powerful due to the fact that it was not entirely unexpected. I think that even without the cover of that issue, that kiss had been something Fantomex could not wait to do. Remender had been building up to that moment since the beginning of the series. He had made it relatively clear that Fantomex had had some attraction toward Psylocke, but that this affection was for the most part kept secret from her. His advances became stronger around issue #10 when Fantomex went so far as to use the argument between Betsy and Warren to his advantage, thus approaching her and asking her to dinner. Needless to say, Betsy turned him down. Even if Betsy hadn't noticed or acknowledged Fantomex's advances before, the build up to the kiss had obviously been there.

It is pretty sneaky of him to spring it onto her that way, though, isn't it? Fantomex proves he's not only charming, but extremely manipulative. The only times we have seen him make overtly romantic advances at Betsy have been at her lowest point. In this scene, he intentionally psychologically breaks her down, telling her she is responsible for allowing Warren to succumb to Apocalypse.

But blaming her for Warren's decline into crazy town isn't all he does. Fantomex insists that Psylocke does not really love Warren, approaching her in her moment of weakness stating that the only reason she is with him is because she likes feeling "needed." After psychologically breaking her down, he uses that moment to strike.

True, Fantomex is manipulative and is choosing his time to strike when Betsy is at her most vulnerable, but is Psylocke's relationship with Warren all that much better? If you have been reading then you know that Psylocke and Warren (Archangel) have been in an exclusive relationship since the beginning of Remender's X-Force #1. While subtle at first, it was not long until it was reinforced that these two were most definitely an item. Obviously superheroes can't have a "normal" relationship, at least not in the way we think of "normal relationships." Yet even for "superhero standards," the romantic commitment that Psylocke and Warren have is still...weird. I don't know about you, but I have never needed my significant other to give me psychotherapy sessions. That can't be healthy for the relationship. And don't doctors have rules that prevent those types of circumstances? Aren't patient/doctor relationships generally frowned upon?

Even though the blame that Fantomex places on Betsy during that highly climactic scene is unwarranted and used to manipulate her, he does have a point. If Betsy and Warren were to have a romantic relationship, then she should not have been the one to psychologically aid Warren with those "sessions." Betsy should not have been acting as Warren's therapist and been solely responsible for ensuring that Warren's alter-ego was kept in check, and the fact that this was not checked by the rest of the team is a bit irresponsible, don't you think? No matter how you look at it, Warren became a liability when he was unable to control Archangel. If Warren falls to Apocalypse, there will be no one to blame but Betsy Braddock.

So who is better for Betsy, Warren the handsome guy with a bad case of multiple personality disorder, or Fantomex, that manipulative snake who oozes charm? As much as I love Betsy, and think she should (for the sake of her character's sanity) be single, I feel that the love triangle between these three characters is what makes them so alluring. The relationship between these three is one aspect of what makes Uncanny X-Force such an interesting read.

Why are love triangles even an important part of this story? Or of comic books in general? Superheroes are seemingly invincible creatures in peak physical condition who are modeled after the idealistic concept of "human perfection." All the men are strong, handsome and all the woman are beautiful, with never a hair out of place. So when they are not spending their time saving the world, or splitting their time between two or three teams, they are building relationships with their teammates. Who could blame these figures of perfection for developing emotional ties to one another? When you spend enough time running around in spandex on a team full of people who are more or as attractive as you are, chances are you'll fall prey to your own weakness. Sure, heroes fall in lust and in love, but when we get a love triangle, it makes things a little bit more interesting.

The questions remain, what's in store for Warren? Is Archangel completely lost to Apocalypse? Has Psylocke lost him for good? Should Psylocke stay with Warren, or should she get with Fantomex?

65 Comments
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Posted by misspresh

Never really liked the Pyslocke/Archangel coupling, so going to have to go with Fantomex on this one :)

Posted by CATPANEXE

Single and all males should be nothing more than dogs at her beck and and command, be the Warren, Phantomex or whoever.

Posted by The Velvet Rabbit
@Peregrine said:
How much love can the two share? Yeah at first they were a great couple like Scott and jean used to be, but then Archangel nearly wrecked her car when he caught Psylocke taking Neal Shaara for a joyride and accused her of having an affair, and then dumped her shortly after. Then he went the jailbait route with Husk as soon as she died and said he loved her. And now that she's back he's back with her (tho he never paid her the slightest attention for a while after her resurrection). Dont like the way Remender is writing Betsy..first he seems to have forgotten that Psylocke has some telekinetic powers that he never has her use (why the hell wouldn't she just wrap the bomb in a tk forcefield instead of trying to dismantle it by hand) and now he's forgotten that those two have been over for a while. And I hate fantomex..put Besty with Logan..i've always thought the mutant ninja should get with the mutant samurai (Wolverine's daughter in the MC2 universe has "Psi-claws" hint hint)
I agree with you in everything except the Logan part.   seriously, I can hardly count how many dozens of people have gotten some Wolverine action - for a loner, he sure gets around.... 
 
I'd take those two over her and Fantomex, though - it's a fun idea to mess with, but I can't possibly see it lasting, what with the whole dashing French rogue motif.   but yeah, Warren and Betsy have been out of the game for a long time.   then again, I think Rick Remender was just being adamant about getting it in there, so it was bound to happen. 
 
and I never got that either - I know Elektra has psychic powers - but seriously, her and Logan have a kid and her power is 'psi-claws'?   apparently even natural selection has a funny way of marketing characters. 
 
@CATPANEXE said:
Single and all males should be nothing more than dogs at her beck and and command, be the Warren, Phantomex or whoever.
now you're speakin' my language   :P
Posted by Lovingdamnation

It's pretty messed up that Fantomex is onlybetter for Betsy because her current is infected with a virus that makes him want to bring about an end to all things.

Posted by The Black Hood

I don't see her with Fantomex at all.  Writing her as hating him for his arrogance and lack of morals and then suddenly falling for him is simply pandering to teenage boys.  Psylocke is one my favorite comic characters and I was never happy with her and Angel, but I was certainly a ton happy with that arrangement than her being with that ass-hat Fantomex.

Posted by Jayso4201

Whether it has been said or not there is only one man in the world for Psylocke:  
 
 
 
 
 ME!
Posted by caladbolglight

I don't like love triangles, and I find that Marvel potentially uses them to far to often, though it is fun to have a bit of drama occasionally in a comic. I love the series, since it's been consistently amazing issue after issue, blend of plot, action, character development, and so on and so forth. However, Remender seems to be putting a bit TOO MUCH romance in the comic. Recently we had Wolverine hook up with the Jean Grey from Age of Apocalypse, which was neat, but then Fantomex and Psylocke locked lips a good 10 pgs after! Overusing something much. While I think that it's cool to have a bit of underlying romance, I hope that it doesn't become a major part of this series. It frankly doesn't need it. Having Fantomex casually flirting with Psylocke when she has her problems with Archangel is all good fun, but imagine how the quality of the comic would change if Fantomex and Psylocke actually got serious??

Posted by likalaruku

If a relationship doesn't have ribaldry in it, it doesn't interest me, that's how cliche romance is.

Posted by Iron Fist Angel

With my name and avatar you'd think my answer would be obvious but I don't really care. Honestly, this love triangle crap is boring to me. I know this kind of thing has been a staple in my beloved comics since the beginning but it still doesn't interest me.

Edited by RazielWraith

Love triangles... is this all that writers in Marvel and DC can do these days??? Too many women in the X-Men group are too easy to get into bed. And for dumb reasons.

Posted by thanobomb1124

profesor x will show her the way (mentaly that is) : )

Posted by Squares

Nobody, crazy cat lady Psylocke all the way!

Posted by GT-Man

I'm voting for TEAM ANGEL! 

Posted by CWB

@ZombiePie: @ZombiePie said:

This is bugging me but the third image has a typo in the comic (not the article). It is not that big of a deal as everyone mistakes "were" with "we're," but it is somewhat annoying.

"We're" is short for "we are." i.e. "We are due for a session." Contracted, that would be written, "We're due for a session." Were; verb, a 2nd person singular pt. indicative, plural past indicative, and past subjunctive of be. i.e. "Were you thinking yourself clever to point out the downfall of others on an online forum?"

There is not a typo in this comic.

Posted by daredevil21134

Hawkeye