Marvel's upcoming Generation X aren't the next generation of X-Men, but rather misfits even inside the walls of the new Xavier's Institute.
The creative team, team line-up, and plot details of the new Generation X title coming out in early 2017 as part of the Inhumans/X-Men "ResurrXion" line have been revealed over at CBR. Colorist-turned-writer Christina Strain and artist Amilcar Pinna will be reviving this 1990s-era team as a group of "lovable losers" who are outsiders in a new Xavier's Institute set in Central Park. Led by one-time Generation X member Jubilee, the team has been classified as neither potential X-Men or potential ambassadors for mutantkind, but rather "lovable losers" as Strain calls them.
"For years, the Xavier Institute has been a sort of safe haven for young mutants. Society rejects them, they go to the Institute, and then they’re taught how to control their powers, usually in hopes of eventually becoming X-Men. But it’s dangerous. People die - sometimes by the busload. So when we take a second to be honest about it, maybe not all mutants are cut out to be X-Men? They’re not all going to be Cyclops, or Storm, or Jean Grey," said Strain. "And some young mutants have powers that just don’t make sense in a battle situation (I’m lookin’ at you, Cypher). So, in the interest of keeping more of their young alive, the Institute’s thinking it’s time for a restructure."
Jubilee counts herself as a student-turned-X-Men who didn't quite make the cut, and sees this as a chance to find the proper place for those like her.
"Now in Central Park, the rechristened Xavier Institute has taken this move as an opportunity to re-evaluate their students, internally dividing the student body into three classes: The Next Generation of X-Men, the Next Generation of Ambassadors, and the Next Generation of… well, lovable losers. These are our Gen Xers. And they include mutants with benign powers, mutants who are considered liabilities during missions and/or battles, and mutants with personalities ill-fitting of an ambassador. They’re basically all mutants who just don’t seem to fit in anywhere - including the very school where they were promised they would fit in."
Jubilee's group of students are Quentin Quire, Eye-Boy, Benjamin Deeds, Nature Girl, Bling!, and a new psychometric mutant named Nathaniel Carver.
"[After Jubilee, everyone] else was a pain to pick though. I literally spent weeks reading up on a ton of the younger mutants. Weeks," the writer explained. "I think [editor] Daniel [Ketchum] wanted to murder me. But in my defense, I was looking for some very specific things, and you’d be surprised at how hard it is to find young mutants with weird/”weaker” powers or personality flaws that made them more of a liability than an advantage during a fight."
Although Jubilee is the lone character previously affiliated with the "Generation X" name, Strain said that founding team-member Chamber will be the first among many to show up in the book eventually.
"Chamber. Chamber, Chamber, Chamber, Chamber. Did I mention Chamber? After all, Jubilee’s gotta have someone to confide in, and who doesn’t love a sad boy?" said Strain. "And there are a few other members of the original Gen X crew that I’m definitely interested in checking in on, including Husk - but don’t expect a Chamber/Husk romantic reunion. As for other ex-students, I do have an affinity for Dani Moonstar and Magik, so I imagine you’ll see them popping up at some point. And I don’t know that Andre Mexer counts as an ex-student, but hear me now: he’ll be around."
Although based on a 1990s X-Men title of the same name, the big influence of 2017's Generation X is another Marvel teen team book - once Strain once worked on as a colorist.
"Like, each arc’s going to be different, but Runaways is probably my touchstone comic in terms of balance," said Strain. "It was so good about mixing the character stories with super heroics, so that’s the sort of balance I’m looking to achieve."
That being said, Strain and Ketchum chose Amilcar Pinna in part because his work is "alternative and stylish" like Generation X co-creator/original artist Chris Bachalo.
"Amilcar’s art is distinctive and it has so much personality. A big part of the reason Daniel and I wanted him for Generation X is because, like Chris in the ’90s, Amilcar’s style is alternative and stylish," the writer said. "One of the things I loved about the original Generation X was that it showcased what was interesting and complex about the younger generation at the time - and that’s exactly what I want for this iteration of Generation X. Just with a millennial twist."