By G. P. Avants
Growth is a necessary part of life though it more often than not painful. Ask the X-Men and women. They have struggles to be recognized not just as odd, different, and scary, but intelligent, caring, and heroic individuals. The world has moved from fearing them and trying to extinguish their kind to asking for their help and revering their name. What a journey it has been to get to this point in the life of this team of heroes.
In the movie, Dark Phoenix, The X-Men are leaving the confines of Earth to save a shuttle team in space. Just leaving the planet they have gone where no hero has gone before. But after a successful mission they encounter an alien presence and Jean took it on to save the team. She knew what ever hero realizes that when you start using your abilities the challenges get bigger and bigger. That forces you to grow as well. There is always the chance of failure and being one bad day, one royal screw up to be hated by those who trusted you.
Jean Grey changes. Her entry into adulting is more like a fiery roller coaster. Her past is opened up and her past defining trama comes to the forefront. In this version of Jean’s story her anger killed her mother and caused her father to cast her away like a monster. Jean’s new powers is giving her a heightened emotional thunderstorm of soul searching.
Even the kind act of Dr. Xavier hiding her past memories becomes a perception of betrayal and mistrust. It also spills over into fellow X-men. Caring young adult friends want to help her cause and it results in a change in the whole team dynamics.
In a desperate cry Jean asks how to control her immature self and move into her new role as the Dark Phoenix. She embraced her new role instead of pushing the power of change away. Her new role inspired the other X-Men to move forward in their lives as well. There is even a scene where Dr. Xavier moves into a sort of early retirement. In a role-reversal Magneto comes to visit his friend bringing the familiar games of chess. The game has changed and the story of the X-Men won’t ever be…predictable.
Jean Grey’s story is the growing pains we all experienced when we left the familiar confines of our home life on Earth. We might have been going off to college, starting a new job, getting married. A new super power called personal responsibility has invaded our lives and it might feel like a fire burning down deep on our bones. Adulting is a necessary and painful part of our lives. Yes, it’s easier to hide in our teen lives and run from the changes life throws at us. But, the world needs brash, brave, and adventurous your heroes to become something more: tempered, mature, and wise leaders.
What is special? Amazing people, how do you use your gifts. You have free choice. If you choose the right path we are here to help. I break things. We are not her to fix me? You are not broken.