X - CEPTABLE IN THE ’ 80S
The X- Men’s greatest writer Chris Claremont on the merry mutants’ definitive decade…
Could the X- Men stories you wrote in the ’ 80s have been made in a different decade? The creation of characters grew organically out of the evolution of the X- Men as an ongoing story. People are always asking what is my favourite X- Men story, and my answer is always issues 94 to 279 inclusive. To me it’s all one story in the same sense that a life is one life. What do you feel distinguished the X- Men in the ’ 80s? The seminal difference between the X- Men then and the X- Men now was freedom. The editorial ethos of Marvel was different in the ’ 70s and early middle ’ 80s than it is today. You were expected to do superb stories on time and not be a pain in the ass. It was a much more freewheeling environment. Few images of the X- Men in that decade are as iconic as Storm’s mohawk. It looks like it’ll feature in X- Men: Apocalypse… It will [ laughs]? The irony was that [ artist] Paul Smith did a selection of looks. We wanted something to shake everybody up about Ororo, and he drew that one as a giggle. I showed it to [ editor] Louise [ Simonson] and she said, “Oh this is cool.” For me the beginning of it was in the wedding scene — Storm shows up in leathers with the mohawk and Kitty bursts into tears. What did you think of X- Men: Days Of
Future Past? The only thing I regret about Days Of Future Past is that it would have been nice to see John Byrne and I get a credit, since it was our story. I assume it has everything to do with contracts and talks and what have you. Days Of Future Past was, of all the nine X- Men films to date, the closest to a straight adaptation of the original work. Being in the film [ in a cameo role] was a hoot.