By TheGreyOutcastX 3 Comments
Hello my fellow Viners. I'm TheGreyOutcastX, but just call me Grey for short. Simplifying is always good. I thought about setting up my own little blog which I have entitled "Exiled-In-Thought". It's partially an homage to Nate being called "The Exile" by people in the 616, and it was original and sounds awesome. So that's gonna be my thing.,,,,but back to the point.
As you can see with my name, I'm a big fan of Nate Grey aka "X-Man" (I still feel he needs a better code-name.), and since his return, I have been thinking of a wishlist of things I'd like Marvel to address. Now, I want to say that I of course know that most if not all of these will not happen so I while I'm looking for some opinions, please refrain from stating the obvious, that Marvel will never do any of these cause Marvel isn't interested in making characters good or something else cause I already know. I am breaking it down into two posts so 1-5 is first and 6-10 are the next set.
1. New Look
Let's face it, Nate's hardly a shaman anymore since that requires him to actually have his powers so he can protect mutantkind from afar. Given that he lacks powers and my growing dislike of his shaman look, I first want him to lose the shaman buzz cut. I thought his hair was ridiculous as a Shaman. Above are images of his former hairstyles, I think it's time to return to one of those hairstyles. He needs a more modern yet professional look cause he's hard taken seriously. While I'm on that subject, for the love of Stan Lee, GIVE THE BOY A SHIRT AND SOME DAMN SHOES! I get it, he's supposed to be a hot. But he was also supposed to be one of the strongest Psi users in the Marvel Universe, guess Marvel would rather showcase his abs instead of give him enough power to make him actually be a decent member of the New Mutants.
I get why Warren Ellis wanted Nate to look like he did during Counter X. He wanted Nate to reflect the true outsider, the James Dean type, no blue, no yellow, just black pants and a jacket. But that only really works when he has the power to stop bullets or near planet busting attacks via Telekinesis. Nate got nerfed to having to seriously focus on his TK to make it work. Now someone could just stab him or pop off a lucky shot and kill him. Kinda why my annoyance at why he lacks a shirt or rather, a uniform that actually could offer some protection given that Nate's low TK. I think there should be a new uniform:
I figure a cross of his older pre-shaman costumes. Like give him a leather jacket that has the X logo and colors of his Shaman Pimpcoat from Dark X-Men. Belt and pants like the X-Factor suit Scott gave him (modernized), and a Chest-piece armor/suit that has the X on the spot where his brand is (That way you acknowledge it's there without him being shirtless.) I took some inspiration from one of Scott's suits. Similar yet better than Scott's in the pic below.
There has been one problem since Nate's return that has bugged me. Ok, you de-powered a guy who was all about his power, but now what? What does he have to fall back on? The answer is: Nothing! He has no hand to hand skills, no weapon skills, no training of any form for that matter. He came into the 616 with near perfect control of his telekinesis and telepathy and the ability to do more anything without really ever being trained Psionically. Looking back at it, it makes no sense. It's a recipe for failure if the character is already given all the tools. He needs to learn, to adapt, to evolve. Nate hasn't really had to do any of that. I'm gonna break it down in the fields he needs to work on.
Sinister said it best when Nate told him he wasn't a weapon:
Psychic training (Telepathy/Telekinesis)
Even though Nate was already a Psi of the First Order as stated by Xavier, Nate was naturally talented and developed his gift through experience. He is still raw power, unrefined, not truly explored. In his notes on Nate Grey, Warren Ellis stated:
Xavier should have taken a lot more interest in Nate Grey than he has to date. Xavier is suppose to be a professor, for -bleak- sake, why does he not behave like a man with the normal degree of scientific, and medical curiosity? People are now aware that Grey is the sole survivor of a torched parallel Earth. And the genetically enhanced child of an alternate Jean/Scoot Summers couple. He is the single repository of knowledge of a parallel world culture, and the only known example of a “hothoused” mutant. This is someone Xavier would want to meet, and learn from.
Charles should have taken a greater role in Nate's life considering Charles repeated stated that Nate was the strongest psionic presence he had felt at the time. Given that Nate has somewhat moved beyond his total mistrusting nature, and the Xavier really hasn't done anything in a long time, I figure this is the perfect time to train him in his psionic powers much like he did with Rachel. (This would imply Nate gets more psionic power back) This would be a great start to begin Nate down the proper path to being a true X-Man and prehaps maybe even a future leader of mutantkind. (More on this subject in a minute)
I'm gonna post the picture from I believe Cable #31 which stated something that I wish Marvel addressed and worked on since Nate has litte TK:
As you clearly read in the scan, Cable more or less comments that because of the level of Nate's psionic power, he figures that Nate hasn't learned to compliment his power with physical prowess. Nate always relied on his mind to give him the win or found a end to combat. This is also a bane to writers as this requires them to force Nate to fight opponents who are closer to Nate's level of power. Given that Nate is now very weakened, now is the optimum time to rebuilt Nate from the ground up. Time to put all those muscles Nate never really uses to work. Breaking this down into two categories: Martial Arts and Weapons.
I like when Nate is very different from Cable. This is where Nate could be again be different. Where Cable is the tried and true soldier, I'd like to Nate become the Peaceful Warrior who embraces life and uses his gifts to heal, mend, and save (which already adds on to Nate trying to be his own man, and trying to not just be a mutant doomsday weapon). Not afraid to fight, but would try to keep the peace before it got to the point at he had to fight. This would also help reduce the burden of Nate having to always go all out with telekinetic force when he could use a combination martial art with his TK that allows him to do hand to hand fights instead of finding powerful opponents that can withstand his usual TK onslaught. I would love all of these people to train Nate in Martial Arts:
Iron Fist: Danny Rand is usually the first guy I think of for someone to train Nate. Why? Cause Nate needs a spiritual teacher as well as someone to teach him the proper principles of combat. Plus Danny knows various styles and I can see Nate's Telekinesis be used in conjugation with martial arts similar to how Iron Fist uses Chi. Perhaps Nate could learn to fight in a similar style to the Iron Fist, but with Telekinesis being the power behind it. Given that Chi is not just a spiritual energy, but a life force, Nate technically should be able to adapt his psionic power to it since Nate is now a psionic entity having turned his real body into psionic energy. That, and maybe Danny using his chi could heal Nate's damage nerves which have been the root of his de-powerment. Writers could say that Nate's power haven't fully returned, but a portion of them have or that his subconscious is holding them back so he could slowly adjust to getting all that power back as it could possibly cause damage to him or something. But above all, I just get the idea that Nate could learn more from Danny than he could most people.
Shang-Chi: Given that Spider-man learned Kung-fu from Shang-Chi, Peter could always recommend him to Nate. If you can teach Peter Parker, I'm sure Nate could learn just as easy. But I'd find it more interesting if Shang-Chi teamed up with Danny to get Nate the maximum martial arts training.
Psylocke: Betsy is another person I'd love to have Nate trained with. Probably the easiest of the three given, both Nate and Betsy are in San Francisco and both of them are telepathic/telekinetic psionics. I'm very partial to the Master-Student bond which I feel Wolverine shouldn't have the monopoly on. While I'd still want Iron Fist to train Nate, I'd love to see Nate still learn from Betsy both ninjutsu and tactial use of psionics. Plus I have some funny lines that could be used between them. I'd like to see a buddy/Master-student relationship between them. I like Psylocke and I'm not trying to ship anything beyond a teacher-student relationship. (But I'd be lying if my inner fanboy wouldn't love to see some awkward sexual tension moments :D)
Nate has used guns before. Nate learned some skill from Domino during the Onslaught saga so he know how to use one, but while I'd prefer him to move away from guns as they are usually Cable's things, Nate has three ways to learn or get guns: Domino, Hope, and Cable.
FOCUS ON MARTIAL ARTS!
Ok, you are now looking at me like I'm crazy. Nate Grey leading a team?! That's so not in character, and when he gets his powers back, why would he need a team? Well, they can easily keep Nate's powers down to Jean Grey (W/O Phoenix) levels so he is still strong enough to still do solo things yet still work in a team setting. But let's think about it: Summers men have all been natural leaders. Corsair lead the Starjammers, Cyclops has lead the X-Men and X-Factor, Havok led X-Factor, his version of the Brotherhood, and the Starjammers, Vulcan was the Emperor of the Sh'iar for a time, and Cable led the New Mutants and X-Force. Nate is the last Summers male to have yet to lead (and he IS a Summers). This is another role which Xavier should try to help Nate with like he did with Nate's father, Scott. Speaking of Scott, he definitely needs to be a driving force in instructing Nate on leadership considering it would probably be the most father-son bonding they will ever have. The beauty is that Nate is young enough to mold into a very strong leader if the time is taken. If Scott or Charles made the effort to instead not only the qualities of leadership, but also the dream, Nate very well could be a future leader of the X-Men (which is something I'd like to see. No one said though it had to be a main X-Men team.)
3. He needs to stand for a cause and become a leader
Part of the problem with Nate from a writing stand-point is that he is the outsider. He doesn't fit in any group nor cause. That makes it difficult to apply him to any story if he's the guy who stays out of the world's problems. So he needs to fight for something. This goes hand and hand with him being a leader. While I don't think he would fight for Xavier's exact dream, I think he would fight for his own take of that dream. There was a quote by Nate after he learned what a group of mutant telepaths had done to a group of alternate universe children in Counter X:
"Homo Superior means you have advantages. It doesn't mean you're beyond accountability." I believe Nate would use this concept while he would take some concepts of Scott's side: Make the X-Men a true team of heroes, but more in a protect and serve sort of manner. Nate would not just try to protect mutants, he would try to protect the people. But I think Nate would try to make his team of X-Men a family thing as sort of a chance to give him the family he really never had.
If Nate was to walk down the road to be a leader of an X-team, I would want him to first establish the bond with Scott so that Scott could be a teacher or mentor to him, a role that Scott rarely took considering that Rachel was more like Jean and Cable already had the skills. Nate does have the potential to be a leader. While Rachel is the guardian and Cable is the soldier, Nate, I have always felt, was the Champion. He was the type who could and would fight the battles that he has too while often choosing the path that would lead to peace. It definitely would be interesting to see him in the leadership role.
4. Family Matters
Nate and the rest of the Summers/Grey family need to come together at some point and need to be a family. Though I get that Marvel loves to make Scott look like he is incapable of being a father. I noticed parallels between Nate and Scott. Both really didn't have their fathers in their lives. (Though in Nate's defense, he didn't know Scott was his dad, nor did AoA Scott know.) Both were raised by Father figures who wanted to help them walk a righteous path. Hell, Nate is more like a Summers in regards that he is a psionic dynamo who stores a vast amount of energy while still being able to tap into another plane to access more energy. It kinda pains me that Scott hasn't at least tried to be more father like to Nate given what happened to Cable (before X-Sanction restored him to life). But in Scott's defense, they need him to be the calm, collect robot. Think of it this way. Schism was a battle of Logic/Reason versus Emotion. If Scott gave into emotion, it would weaken his ideologies, and hurt his status as leader. So to that end, I understand why he's gone down the road of robot. But even with that, you as the reader would think cause of all that Scott has lost that when he got Nate back, he would have made an effort to be there for his son rather than as the leader of mutants. I know that Nate was far closer to Jean than Scott (Hence why she forced them to be alone with each other so bonding could happen when he visited them in Alaska), but you clearly saw in Regenesis NM that Nate wanted to know Scott and have the Father-Son relationship. In all honesty, I would be ok with the usual bonding standard or even if Nate and Scott have a fight (Verbal and/or physical) that gets into the topics of Jean, favoritism of Cable and somewhat Rachel, and forces Scott to see that Nate is similar to him and the Summers potential in Nate which most writers tend to not go near.
As far as Jean Grey goes, I'd like to see a more mother-son relationship. Nate was far closer to Jean than Scott so naturally I'd like for them to give them some bonding time so they can try to pull the Summers/Grey children together.
One thing that also needs to be addressed is Nate and Cable. Now we all know both of them share similarities and also quite a lot of differences, but people all call Nate Cable for another world. Technically, that's not true. If that where the case, Nate wouldn't have various multiverse versions of himself cause he would just be another version of Cable. It always urked me that Nate hasn't gotten mad whenever someone said he was Cable from another world. So I liked it if the two had some moment (preferablly a fight between the two of them) that established them as two different people, that both of them stop looking at themselves like they are one and the same or connected at the hip, and that they redefine themselves at what they are: Two Summers Brothers. I'd hope this would make them closer than how Cyclops and Havok are. Now as for Rachel, well let's just let them actually have a moment to bond, period.
Now where of course does that put Hope Summers and Nate? Well, I think this is probably the one thing I'm gonna get hate from. I actually liked their interactions. I think it could be formed into a close friendship. I mean I think they could actually be good partners. I mean I think they could work how Dick Grayson and Damian Wayne worked. Cable had Rachel so I think it feels natural to partner Nate and Hope together. I think they could honestly learn from one another and evolve as better characters along the way.
5. Alternate Direction
If nothing is done with Nate in the 616, then I feel Nate needs to become a figure of the Multiverse again. Before he sacrificed himself for life on Earth, Nate was a mutant shaman. He protected Earth's mutants from outside threats. Now I'd want him to do something similar, but go explore not just the multiverse, but time and space as well. I'm sure you can assume what kinda thing I'd want Nate to do: If nothing else, make him a Doctor Who-esque figure and have him go on wondrous adventures while trying to protect time and space. If handled properly, it could give you reasons to do something more with ARMOR or even kick start another Exiles group a la Torchwood. I have some ideas for this concept including a custom ship like the TARDIS that was in a dimension all it's own. Like a Nexus in which all routes connects.
Well that takes care of 1-5 of my ten things for Nate. Thank you for listening. The rest will be worked on. I sadly procrastinated a lot with this. I may post a top 5 team ups (Mutant and Non-mutant) I want for Nate sometime soon. Then maybe I'll be moving on to my thoughts about wanting Danny Ketch (The Second (Supernatural) Ghost Rider). Thank you again, and Excelsior, true believers.