Excalibur #58

“Troll Call”

Writers: Alan Davis and Scott Lobdell

Pencils: Joe Madureira

Inks: Josef Rubenstein & Hector Collazo

Colours: Kevin Tinsely

Letters: Ken Lopez

Editor: Terry Kavanagh

Original publication date: December 1992

We are most definitely not calling all trolls to this week’s nuanced discussion of the different but equally complex personal and professional successes and failures of Kurt Wagner and Scott Summers in and around Excalibur #58, “Troll Call,” in the gracious company of X-Twitter fixture, social justice researcher, and all-around expert in the inner lives of mutants, Conor Mulvaney (@ConorReadsXMen)! Will Kurt prove to Jubilee and Gambit he’s not a troll? (And why should he have to, anyway?) Did Tom Jones learn enough auditing a single university biology class to be able to turn gold back into not-gold? Will Anna admit she might be more like Cyclops than Nightcrawler??? Tune in to find out!

On the unstoppable march of time:

“This was the first issue where I really felt like—Excalibur has arrived in the 90s.” -Conor

On Scott vs Kurt:

“Scott thinks it’s his God-given right to lead the X-Men, dammit. That’s what his conflict with Storm was, and that’s the conflict here with Kurt, who has to tell him—you’re in my country now. We’re going to do things my way.” -Mav

On the complexity of Cyclops:

“I don’t think there’s a character who screws up as often, as publicly, and gets punished for it as often as Scott. And I think it’s so fascinating to have this character who’s so central to this franchise be a screwup. I love that.” -Conor

On Kurt's evolving leadership:

“I don’t understand why Kurt would need atonement from Scott. In their third appearance together, Kurt basically says ‘Fuck off, Scott, I’m going to do it my way.’ It’s supposed to be a step forward for Kurt, but for me it feels like a step back.” -Andrew

On mascots:

“I wonder if the mascot thing would have come up again if Kurt hadn’t been re-traumatized by Gambit and Jubilee, whose reaction to him conjures Kitty’s terror of him all those years ago.” -Conor

On resurfaced trauma:

“I like the callback to the ‘mascot’ thing because it’s a meaningful backstory for this character. He has a history of having to work hard to be accepted by his own people. Which says a lot about him—how he approaches heroism and relationships.” -Anna   

More kisses:

“I weirdly have more issues with this kiss than the one in #55. Kurt just hit Cerise, hard enough to draw blood, and she rewards him with a kiss. It also feels a bit icky in a professional context. Do all of Kurt’s subordinates have to kiss him after the mission?” -Anna

Want more Conor Mulvaney?

Want more Conor Mulvaney?

You can find him on Twitter (@ConorReadsXMen), where he tweets outstanding threads analyzing the X-Men franchise in chronological order, focusing on trauma, justice, and queer themes.

And! Check out his corresponding website, readthecun.com, for archived threads and other X-Men goodness!

Plus! Check him out talking Inferno and trauma (and Magik!) on the Mutant Watch podcast

And as usual: 

You can find Anna on Twitter (@peppard_anna) and on her podcast with Andrew and Michael Hancock, Three Panel Contrast (@3PanelContrast). 

You can find Andrew on Twitter (@ClaremontRun).

You can find Mav on Twitter (@chrismaverick) and on his podcast, VoxPopcast (@VoxPopcast). 

Enjoy!

-GGW Team