By Darkmount1 15 Comments
We all are on the edge of our seats to see if Avengers Vs X-Men will do what hasn't been done in recent years...something that may not happen, but still...the return of Jean Grey, after all this time. But if that does occur, the question is, what will happen with her afterwards? Personally, were I the one deciding her fate, I'd have her do something other than the usual actions (joining one of the Avengers, rejoining the X-Men, etc.). I propose that, instead, she do something none of them expected--form her own hero team. Or in this case, RE-form a team, because I'd have her revive the long-forgotten LA guardians known as the Champions! LA may already have Moon Knight and the Runaways, but I think it's time they got the Champs back, and I'd think Jean should be the one to bring it. Here's what I have in mind:
If Jean is revived, she takes off for a while to think about what's happened, and what she wants to do now. As of now, she's no longer connected to the Phoenix Force, her ties finally cut after so long. Effectively, it was death that did part her marriage to Cyclops, and both have moved on. Logan offered her the option of teaching at the school (it is named after her) and it still stands even if she decides not to take it. Things have greatly changed in the world she left behind for some time, and she ultimately decides to go with those changes. (One thing she does to further distance herself from all things Phoenix is adopting a new codename--Mindseye.) Inspiration strikes after talking with Iceman one day. With his, Black Widow's, Herc's, and Johnny Blaze's blessings, she decides to bring back that unsung team of heroes known as the Champions. Backed financially by Namor's Oracle Inc., and based in an LA estate unused by Charles Xavier for some time, Jean sets out to recruit the members to her team, finding them in what some would consider unlikely (my ideas, trust me):
One of Jean's oldest friends, she offers a spot for Wanda both as a chance to redeem herself and give her a break from the more 'chaotic' side that is the East Coast. (I thought Wanda could also use a break from being either the X-Men or Avengers' "punching bag" in terms of misfortune. And I know there are some who like the ways Jean and Wanda have been featured together in a lot of official and fan-written material...)
After recovering at Project Pegasus (following the events of The Thanos Imperative), Chris Powell finds that he still needs help finding a decent balance between his personal life and his role as Darkhawk, especially after the revelations of the armor's origin. When he learns of Jean's recruiting drive, he joins up to see if the experience could help. (I'd put him in a situation similar to the Jaime Reyes Blue Beetle.)
We haven't seen much of Lupe since Civil War and her trouble with the Puppet Master, so I thought she'd be a good addition to the team. Let's say that after completing her studies at ESU and graduating, she decides to do some graduate work in LA, where she receives a call from Jean. Lupe finds herself joining the group after seeing the opportunity to be part of something special (outside efforts to help her home) again, like her time with the Avengers.
Let's face it, Rick hasn't seen any action since the waning issues of the first volume of The Incredible Hulk. I'd put that he and Marlo moved to West LA in the time between Incredible Hulks #636 and Incredible Hulk (vol. 2) #1, and when he learns of Jean's recruiting drive, Marlo gives him the okay, stating how there's almost been a Hulk in some form or another on almost every team. Marlo joins up as a member of the team's support staff.
Darkstar (Laynia Petrova)
One way to connect the new team to the old team would be bringing in one of its original members. Since cultural tastes and international relations have changed greatly (and the fact that she's no longer dead), I figured bringing her back on would be good. She gets recruited by Jean as a suggestion from Iceman, to make up for her treatment back in the days of the original Champions. Laynia decides to give this a chance, seeing as now this would be the Champs 'done right'.
Goliath (Tom Foster)
This would be another means of making the old/new team connection. Tom is recruited by Jean as a means to make up for his time with the Revengers, and as a way to honor his uncle Bill's memory by serving in the team he used to be part of.
Overall, I think Jean would be great leading a team like this, and it wouldn't make the same mistakes the original incarnation did. Were this an ongoing, I'd have the writer be Louise Simonson and the artist be Chris Bachalo.