An Emma Frost Salon
by Ken Kneisel
Welcome to White Queen Wednesday, gentle reader. This week I would like to discuss Emma Frost’s tempestuous relationship with her dear departed fiery fellow telepath and teammate Jean Grey, sometimes known as Phoenix. Theirs was an intense rivalry stretching back to Emma’s earliest appearances, deeply intertwined with notions of life and death and resurrection just like Phoenix herself.
When they first tangled way back during the Dark Phoenix Saga, their psychic battle left Emma seemingly dead. Although obviously this apparent demise would prove to be less permanent than it initially appeared.
The next time they interacted was when Emma invited the X-Men to her Hellfire Club to propose a truce and alliance against the Upstarts whose deadly game threatened both organizations. However, this proposed arrangement was strangled in the crib when the Upstart Trevor Fitzroy and his Sentinels invaded the Hellfire Club, massacred Emma’s beloved Hellions and seemingly killed both Emma and Jean. Keeping both of their bodies in stasis, Professor X would later discover that Jean saved herself by swapping minds with Emma, who remained in a coma for a good long while after Jean’s psyche was restored to her rightful body.
But perhaps the most significant interactions between Jean and Emma occurred during Grant Morrison’s New X-Men era. These stories redefined Emma and the X-Men and their effects can still be felt today. When they first became teammates, Emma and Jean were far from friends. As should be expected based on their adversarial history, Jean harbored a healthy suspicion of Emma’s motives and attitude.