Welcome to With Great Chutzpah Comes Great Responsibility, your every other week dose of Jews and comics.
The X-Men are the Jewiest superheroes in the history of comics. A race of misunderstood and scapegoated people scattered throughout the world who attain their powers around thirteen years old, AKA Bar Mitzvah age. Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Chris Claremont and many of the other uncanny writers who shaped the X-universe are all members of the tribe. There is no doubt the X-Men have been circumcised many times over.
Today, I present to you:
The Top 5 Jewy X-Men Moments
Kitty Pryde, Vampire Slayer –Uncanny X-Men 159
Did you know the Jewish Star charm around your neck is not only stylish but it can repel vampires? In this issue, Dracula has a crush on the beautiful Storm, and he wants to make her his vampire bride. Luckily, Kitty is there to stop him, not with garlic, but with her shiny Magen David necklace charm! Yup, it’s true. Next time a vampire attacks ya just break out your Star of David and he or she will burn right up.
Magneto comes out as a Holocaust survivor- Uncanny X-Men #150.
X-Men scribe Chris Claremont established Magneto as a Holocaust survivor, effectively turning him into one of the most complex and tragic villains in all of comics. No longer a one-sided villain bent on world domination, he is now a man whose trauma causes him to go to any lengths to ensure that his mutant brothers and sisters will NEVER AGAIN endure the horrors he faced.
Magneto and Professor X chill in Israel- Uncanny X-Men #161
Magneto is Professor X’s archenemy, but it turns out, they used to be the best of friends… and they met in Israel. Both journeyed to the holy land to help Holocaust survivors. They immediately connected with each other, starting one of the greatest bro-mances in the history of the universe.
God Loves, Man Kills
Much of Claremont’s long run is essentially a mix of Jewish and civil rights history retold with fictional characters. This story is about a religious televangelist using his warped fundamentalist view of Christianity to justify the murder of those he does not consider human. It is a disturbing story that sadly has occurred too many times throughout our history, and continues to be retold against different persecuted groups throughout the world.
The birth of Utopia- Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Utopia crossover
During Norman Osborn’s “dark reign” of the US government, the mutant population deals with government-mandated persecution. This is the last straw for Cyclops, a lifelong follower of co-existence. He creates a mutant homeland out of the ashes of Asteroid M, Magneto’s former base, and names it Utopia. Utopia provides refuge to any mutant throughout the world, regardless of their record or politics. A clear analogy for Israel, Utopia concentrates the mutant population into a small territory, opening them up to attack by their enemies. Sadly, Utopia doesn’t survive the most recent coming of the Phoenix, but for a brief moment I considered it my homeland.
I recently published a top five most Jewy Marvel moments article. I listed two other Jewy X-Men moments on the list that did not make this one. Why? ‘Cause I didn’t feel like repeating myself. So go check out my other list by clicking here you lazy bums.
I also did not include Days of Future Past. Why? I already referenced the Holocaust on this list, and our history encompasses much more than that horrible time period. So while it is a classic analogy to what the Ashkenazi people went through, I decided not to list it.
What moments do you guys and gals most connect to? What moments should have made the list?