X-Men #20-23 (1993): The One Where Psylocke is Fake (Only She’s Also Not)

Remember when Johnny Storm married Alicia and there were all kinds of stories and then about fifty issues later Tom DeFalco decided he didn’t want Johnny to marry Alicia because she’s Ben Grimm’s girlfriend and nothing like that should ever change, so DeFalco decided that Alicia had been a skrull the whole time?  Well, these issues do the same thing, only with Psylocke.

Psylocke already changed from being white to Asian due to a body switch.  Then she went away for a bit. Now, she’s back.

Soon after she returns, Psylocke decides to come on strong to Scott.

To be clear: She licks him. Then he kisses her. Naturally, this makes Jean jealous and makes Scott get all lone-wolf broody again.  

Scott decides to go take time for himself, and Jean starts stalking Psylocke.

Note in the panels above, Cerebro identifies two Psylockes. Jean says, “Never mind.” She finds Psylocke and…

Only it’s not Jean.

What is actually going on here? Don’t bother trying to figure it out. Everyone will just fight instead.

I wish I liked this, but it all feels a bit like “don’t shoot me, shoot him, he’s the real bad guy!” A played-out sequence that requires a lot more emotional investment if you’re going to play it ultra serious–and Psylocke is just too new and vague a character for me to go there for this story.

Long story short, the real Psylocke is Revanche.  And Revanche is the white Psylocke.  She kills fake Psylocke (Asian Psylocke) after fake Psylocke wounds Jean Grey.  Scratch that.  She doesn’t just kill her…

She beheads her.

But fake Psylocke is not only not dead, but, being Asian, she’s got an ally in Silver Samurai.
And when she returns, real Psylocke is an ass kicker. Oh, and somehow they merge together.

One mind, two bodies.

I’m sure that there’s all kinds of continuity discrepancies if you go back and read the old X-Men books where writers had no idea this retcon would happen later.  But I just don’t care enough.  I also don’t really understand what the point of all this was.

Now, remember how Scott ran away?  Well, he meets up with Mister Sinister.  Sinister tells Scott about the mutant virus that’s running through all the X-books and making mutants sick because Sinister likes Scott and Alex.  But he doesn’t like Cable.  It turns out, Sinister knows about the connection between Scott and Cable as well.  And he’s got a prophecy for Scott.

I’m so tired of all these storylines.  Cable.  Cannonball.  Now Cyclops.  It’s just too much.  Chris Claremont sowed the seeds for this with Rachel Summers, but at least he didn’t overkill it.

As for why Sinister is warning Cyclops about the virus, it’s because he wants him to be safe.

Then the evil Dark Riders show up and Cyclops and Sinister team up and fight them.  None of this has any bearing on the Psylocke story, it just happens in the same set of issues.

This is really getting bad.

3 thoughts on “X-Men #20-23 (1993): The One Where Psylocke is Fake (Only She’s Also Not)”

  1. You’re right. All these issues contain WAY too much X-position. Nicieza is trying WAY too hard to be the next Claremont, with the ultra-sophisticated and convoluted storylines. If I want ultra-sophisticated and convoluted storylines, I’ll read Sydney Sheldon, Jackie Collins, and Truman Capote. In the Army, they taught us the “KISS” rule: “Keep It SIMPLE, Stupid!!” Works for me! Funnybooks needn’t be any deeper or more sophisticated than Gerry Conway, Roy Thomas, Marv Wolfman, early Claremont, or the Master himself, John Byrne. ( and Stan Lee, naturally ) A great story where Psylocke shamelessly throws herself at Cyclops gets needlessly bogged down in all this contrary-and uninteresting- exposition, which just goes on for DAYS. Sheesh! Honestly- the ONLY thing I remember about these issues- or would WANT to- is Psylocke throwing herself at Cyclops, and Marvel Girl’s reaction to it! Good stuff! Keep all the other crap! I’d hate to be Cyclops, here, because if Psylocke or Storm were to ever lick MY face- well…….Jeannie-Baby would just have to roll with it!! And that’s the Gospel! WORD!!!


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