Jean Grey (Marvel Girl/Phoenix)

Marvel Girl / PhoenixJean Grey

From Marvel Girl to Dark Phoenix, Jean Grey's telepathic and telekinetic abilities make her one of the most powerful X-Men in history.

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An extraordinary telepath and telekinetic, Jean Grey learns to better harness her psionic powers and joins the X-Men as a founding member.


Traumatic Manifestation

Jean Grey is the second daughter born to university professor John Grey and his wife, Elaine. While growing up, Grey and her older sister, Sara, become very close friends. Grey’s mutant telepathy manifests prematurely when she’s 10 years old when her best friend Annie Richardson is struck by a car while the two girls played outside. As the girl lay dying in her arms, Grey inadvertently links minds with Richardson and experiences her death firsthand, causing deep trauma for Grey, who emotionally and socially withdraws to cope with the tragedy and the constant barrage of other people’s thoughts she cannot shut out. Her parents seek help for Grey, but when a score of psychiatrists could not help her, they eventually take her to Professor Charles Xavier, AKA Professor X, a friend of John’s from Bard College, who secretly uses his mutant telepathic powers to erect mental blocks within Grey’s mind to allow her time to develop her telepathy naturally. As one of his first students, Xavier also begins training Grey in using her telekinetic abilities and quickly learns she has the potential to become an omega-level mutant. 

During one such training session, Grey feels another mind calling to her and, with Xavier’s help, determines it to be orphan mutant Scott Summers, AKA Cyclops, who eventually becomes Xavier’s student as well. Grey officially enrolls at Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters and joins the X-Men, a group of teenage mutants trained by Xavier to save and protect the world from mutants that would abuse their powers.


Omega-Level Mutant

Jean is a powerful telepath who can detect and read the thoughts of others, project her own thoughts into others’ minds, form psychic links with other beings, control others’ minds so as to manipulate their physical functions, mentally stun opponents with bolts of pure psionic force, cast near-flawless illusions, and project her mind and the minds of others onto the astral plane. At close range, Grey can manipulate almost any number of minds; however, she can only take full possession of another’s mind one at a time, and can only do so if she is within that being’s physical presence. In the past, Grey has, on occasion, used devices such as Cerebro and Cerebra to amplify her telepathic powers.

Jean can use her powerful telekinetic abilities on herself or others to fly, move or manipulate objects and other beings, stimulate molecules to increase friction, create protective force fields, or project as concussive force.

While empowered by the Phoenix Force, Grey has total telekinetic control of matter at the molecular level, allowing her to manipulate atomic structures on a universal scale. She can generate any form of energy in seemingly unlimited amounts, as well as absorb energy from sources as great as a supernova or even convert her physical form to pure energy and back again. She can also exist in virtually any environment without harm and create space/time warps to travel through hyperspace or traverse the timestream, and her telepathic abilities are also vastly enhanced. When using her power, the Phoenix Force will manifest itself around Grey in the form of a bird of cosmic flame, the size of the bird varying with the amount of energy she is using. The Phoenix Force can also resurrect the dead under some conditions, and absorb the life force from other sentient beings to bolster its own. 

Upon her physical death, Grey fully merges with the Phoenix Force and connects to the prime universal force of life, derived from the psyches of all living beings.

Grey is an accomplished pilot, a skilled teacher and an experienced fashion model, and has some training in psychology.


Deadly Foes

As part of the X-Men, Jean battles several terrorist mutants, including the Master of Magnetism, Max Eisenhardt, AKA Magneto, and his Brotherhood of Evil Mutants.

She has repeatedly faced her own clone, Madelyne Pryor, created by the immortal scientist Nathaniel Essex, AKA Mister Sinister, the despot Apocalypse, the demon Nightmare, and the omega-level telepath Amahl Farouk, AKA Shadow King. She perishes at the hands of Kuan-Yin Xorn, AKA Xorn as well as the anti-mutant organization Orchis. Though she is often resurrected by the cosmic entity known as the Phoenix Force or The Five.

Grey has a complicated relationship with the Phoenix Force, a cosmic entity that feeds on her rage and desire, and resurrects her multiple times from death. The Phoenix Force even copies Grey, posing as her for a time, and possesses her as well. While the Phoenix, Grey does terrible things, such as attempting to murder her friends and destroying a world. Eventually she refuses to be party to the Phoenix’s ends.


X-Allies and Relationships

As a teenager, Grey learns from Professor X, who guides her in mastering her psionic powers. When Grey joins his X-Men as a founding member, the team includes Summers as Cyclops, Bobby Drake, AKA Iceman, Warren Worthington III, AKA Angel, and Hank McCoy, AKA Beast. When the team adds Ororo Munroe, AKA Storm, to their ranks, Grey and Munroe become best of friends. Grey is also a founding member of X-Factor with Summers and several other X-Men.

Grey and Cyclops share a long term on- and off-again romance, and oftentimes it’s off when one of them is seemingly dead. But the pair ultimately overcome their missed connections and marry. During their marriage, they face ups and downs in part due to their roles as X-Men and the villains they face while protecting mutantkind. 

During a time when Grey is thought dead, Cyclops marries Madelyne Pryor (Grey’s clone) and has a child with her, Nathan, whom Cyclops and Grey (upon her return and Pryor’s devolution into madness) end up raising in the future for over a decade. When Cyclops recovers from being possessed by Apocalypse, former Hellfire Club member turned X-Man and telepath Emma Frost helps him, but it turns into a psychic affair that leads to Grey and Frost exchanging psychic blows. Though Grey eventually forms a working relationship with Frost. X-Man James Howlett/Logan, AKA Wolverine, also poses a threat to Cyclops as he cares deeply for Grey, and there are times when Grey shares intimate moments with him.

Often alongside the X-Men, Grey allies with Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, the Avengers, and Earth’s First Family, the Fantastic Four.




115 lbs.







Universe, Other Aliases, Education, Place of Origin, Identity, Known Relatives, Powers, Group Affiliation
  • Universe

  • Other Aliases

  • Education

  • Place of Origin

  • Identity

  • Known Relatives

  • Powers

  • Group Affiliation

A Telepath’s Tale

Soon after joining the X-Men, Grey made her public debut as Marvel Girl as the X-Men opposed Xavier’s nemesis, Max Eisenhardt, AKA Magneto, when he tried to take over the Cape Citadel missile base and gain its weaponry in his self-proclaimed war against humanity. At some point, the mad geneticist Mister Sinister, obsessed with gaining power through the genetics of Grey and Summers, somehow obtained a sample of Grey’s DNA and cloned her. However, this clone did not gain sentience, instead remaining comatose in Sinister’s laboratory. 

Despite romantic interest from Angel, Grey and Summers quickly became interested with one another but were reluctant to express their feelings due to his position as team leader. During her first year with the X-Men, Grey and her teammates faced such threats as Telford Porter, AKA Vanisher, the immovable, obese Fred Dukes, AKA Blob, Magneto’s Brotherhood of Evil Mutants and Namor McKenzie, AKA Namor the Sub-Mariner

When an older Beast traveled back in time to the days of the original X-Men, he asked Grey and the team to help stop Cyclops from committing mutant genocide. The teenaged X-Men agreed and, arriving to the present, are shocked to find Cyclops allied with Magneto. The future Grey was dead and Xavier’s school was named after her, while the future Cyclops was responsible for Xavier’s death and a mutant revolutionary, leading another school of students, and Beast was dying from a further mutation. Since Xavier was gone, Grey’s mental blocks were not present, allowing her powers to bloom early. She learned more about her future self through Beast, and decided that she and the time-displaced X-Men should stay and correct the future. They voted to stay with Angel voting to return to their time, and Kate Pryde took it upon herself to look after them.

The young Grey began using her powers in a way that the others didn’t approve of, including mentally controlling Angel’s decisions when he wanted to return to the past without them and joining Cyclops at his revolutionary school. She was stopped by fellow telepaths Frost and the Stepford Cuckoos. Grey soon went up against Mystique and Regan Wyngarde, AKA Lady Mastermind, and unlocked her ability to cast illusions. Grey kept running into Rachel Summers at school, her daughter with Scott from a future timeline, but avoided her. She also couldn’t reconcile who Cyclops would become and how their future relationship would turn out, and instead while working on honing her powers alongside future Beast, she accidentally overheard his thoughts about how he had fallen for her when they were younger. She confronted the younger Hank about being in love with her and though he was embarrassed and frustrated that she read his mind, she insisted they be honest with one another, and they shared a kiss. 

Grey was soon taken by the Shi’ar Empire who demanded she pay for her future self’s crimes as the Phoenix. Her X-Men teammates attempted to rescue her with the help of the Guardians of the Galaxy and the Starjammers, but she soon unlocked another level of her powers of telepathy and telekinesis; siphoning and projecting psychic energy as a concussive force. She asserted that her future crimes as the Phoenix were unstoppable by not just her but by everyone, and called out the hypocrisy that he was the only one on trial. She then defeated the Shi’ar Imperial Guard’s Praetor Kallark, AKA Gladiator, who was so intent on taking her out, with her immense power. Cyclops came to her aid, threatening the Shi’ar to stay clear of Earth, and Gladiator and the Shi’ar reluctantly accepted defeat. 

When Terrigen Mists covered present-day Earth and killed many mutants, Grey and the time-displaced X-Men separated, with Grey going to college. She eventually joined a team built by Storm to address the crisis mutants faced. After the Terrigen Cloud was destroyed, Beast asked Grey back to the team and she accepted though she found out that their ability to return to their time in the past was slim, leaving them to forge a new future.

Determined to change her future, Grey sets out to write her own destiny. While in Kyoto, she saved some innocent bystanders from the machinations of the Wrecking Crew, but was soon visited by a premonition of the Phoenix who was coming for her. To fight back, she sought a range of advice from its previous hosts, the Atlantean Namor, the Asgardian Thor Odinson, AKA Thor, and Betsy Braddock, AKA Psylocke. In the process, she created a powerful telekinetic construct, unlocking newfound abilities. Seeking out the source of her visions of the Phoenix Force returning, she contacted Sorcerer Supreme, Stephen Strange, AKA Doctor Strange, who helped her determine that her visions and the voices she was hearing were that of the spirit of the long-deceased Jean Grey from the present timeline. 

She then had help from Wanda Maximoff, AKA Scarlet Witch, in taking a much needed break, but she was soon zapped back in time to meet with the adult Jean Grey, while the Phoenix Force still possessed her. Alongside Phoenix, the young Grey faced Galactus and Terrax, defeating them. The young Grey chose to keep the adult Jean in the dark about the power she possessed, an important event observed by Uatu the Watcher. Brought back to reality, she found that spirit Jean possessed the body of Emma Frost and when young Grey delved into Frost’s mindscape at the behest of her adult ghost, she recovered a sliver of the Phoenix Force hidden there and took it into herself. Overwhelmed by its power, she soon had help from other telepaths and using a psi-mitar courtesy of mutant messiah and future adoptive step-granddaughter, Hope Summers, she wounded the Phoenix, but it took her down and burned her to a crisp. She arrived in the White Hot Room, the nexus between all phoenix hosts and its eternal flame, a place of rest, so that the Phoenix Force could resurrect the adult Jean Grey to be its host yet again. The young Grey realized she had control in the White Hot Room and ordered the Phoenix to restore her and her body. Once restored, Grey returned to school and met up with her fellow resurrected adult self. 

The young Grey and the X-Men soon faced off with Eddie Brock, AKA Venom, while Grey ended up bonding with a symbiote and assimilated by a Poison, creating Poison Marvel Girl. She soon broke free and killed the Poison Queen and reunited with her friends. She and the teenaged X-Men next went time-hopping and found divergent versions of themselves, who were actually the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants impersonating them. This encounter in the past helped them realize they’d have to return to the precise time they left to prevent the Brotherhood from taking their place. 

Her and her friends were soon targeted by the mutant-hunting time-traveler, Ahab, and they were joined by a young time-traveling Cable who insisted they return to their original timeline to prevent a horrific future should they stay in the present. He first took them back five years before Ahab collected two of his mutant Hounds, Maxine and Manon. Grey found the children and in speaking to them learned how to give people memories and control when they remembered things from Manon. In talking to them, she found that they were kind and uncorrupted. Though Ahab tracked them, so the young Cable sent Grey and the young X-Men back to their original past when they left. With everyone in agreement, Grey wiped her friends' memories of their time in the future, and at the precise moment that the time loop closed, their older selves would inherit their memories.

Back in Grey’s original timeline, she and her teammates ultimately graduated from Xavier’s, and her parents sent her to Metro College, though she remained an X-Man. Grey befriended fellow student Ted Roberts, brother of scientist Ralph Roberts, who adopted the armored Cobalt-Man identity and rampaged until stopped by the X-Men. Xavier, intending to have the mutant shapeshifter Kevin Sydney, AKA Changeling, impersonate him so he could sequester himself to psychically prepare against the alien Z’nox’s impending invasion of Earth, removed the psychic shields from Grey’s mind, allowing her full access to her telepathy, and sought Grey’s aid in helping Changeling fake Xavier’s telepathic powers. When Changeling was killed by the subterranean warrior Grotesk, Grey maintained the pretense by mourning Xavier’s loss. After the X-Men briefly disbanded (part of Xavier’s plan for preventing distractions in his Z’nox preparations), Grey finally began dating Scott, albeit as part of her cover for her work as a photographic model. Eventually reuniting, the X-Men met Cyclops’ brother and the cosmic energy-wielding Alex, AKA Havok, shortly before Xavier revealed his survival to his stunned students, in time to lead them in opposing the Z’nox invasion. 

Grey and her teammates subsequently battled Bruce Banner, AKA the Hulk, encountered Magneto in the Savage Land, joined the young African mutant Storm in opposing fellow mutant weather-manipulator Mzungu, AKA Deluge, and teamed with the Fantastic Four in battling the Z’nox threat once more. During their journey to the Z’nox world, Grey encountered the cosmic Phoenix Force, a nexus of all the psionic energy that has, does, and ever will be created. The Force, having been aware of Grey since her birth, was drawn to her untapped potential and briefly touched her mind. Soon after, Grey and her teammates were captured by the living island Krakoa and used as its sustenance. Xavier sent a new team of X-Men (including a third Summers brother, Gabriel, AKA Vulcan) to rescue his students, but this group was met with great resistance by Krakoa. During the battle, half of this team was believed killed; Xavier wiped all memory of this group from everyone’s minds to spare them the trauma. Xavier gathered another group of X-Men, who rescued Xavier’s first students; Grey found herself inexplicably attracted to new recruit Wolverine. Upon returning home, Grey left the X-Men to explore a life outside the team, moving into an apartment with private investigator Misty Knight. She continued her relationship with Scott and also befriended another new X-Man, Storm, with the two quickly becoming great friends. 

While on a Christmas date with Summers, Grey, alongside the X-Men Sean Cassidy, AKA Banshee, and Wolverine, was captured by mutanthunting robot Sentinels and imprisoned on the orbital space platform of their creator, Steven Lang. Rescued by her former teammates, the X-Men planned to escape in a space shuttle. However, the cockpit’s radiation shielding had been damaged greatly, making it impossible for the human pilot, Peter Corbeau, to survive re-entry. Banking on her telekinesis savingher, Grey absorbed the knowledge of shuttle piloting from Corbeau and flew the shuttle back to Earth. During the flight, Grey’s telekinesis failed to protect her, and she was bombarded with cosmic radiation that quickly began killing her. Her plight attracted the Phoenix Force, which offered to save her life by placing Grey in a healing cocoon while the Phoenix Force impersonated her; Grey accepted. The Force duplicated her body, infusing it with a portion of Grey’s consciousness. It then placed Grey in the cocoon at the bottom of Jamaica Bay off New York City’s Queens, where the shuttle crashed. Grey’s cocoon remained undisturbed in the waters while the Phoenix Force, intoxicated with experiencing humanity, came to believe it was the real Grey. Unaware of the switch, the X-Men welcomed “Grey” back into their ranks as the Phoenix, believing her greatly enhanced abilities were due to the radiation exposure.

With the influence of criminal mentalist Jason Wyngarde, AKA Mastermind, and the Hellfire Club, Phoenix was driven insane and became Dark Phoenix, as well as the club’s Black Queen. Though she freed herself from Mastermind’s hold over her and as the Dark Phoenix, she departed Earth and consumed a star, killing billions of inhabitants of the D’bari system. After battling the X-Men, the portion of Grey’s consciousness within Phoenix resurfaced and forced it to destroy its mortal shell rather than continue as a universal threat, making the X-Men believe that Grey herself had committed suicide to save all of creation. Seeking atonement, the Force tried to return the portion of Grey’s consciousness to Grey. However, when the still-healing Grey experienced the visions of death and destruction the Phoenix Force had committed in her name, she subconsciously rejected the life force. Still keyed to Grey’s DNA, the Phoenix Force instead found and granted the life force to Sinister’s comatose clone. The clone awoke, gaining sentience as Madelyne Pryor. However, the clone’s super-powers remained dormant. As part of Sinister’s plans to create a child of great power through Summers and Grey’s DNA, he positioned Pryor close to Summers’ family, the two eventually meeting, falling in love and marrying.

Grey’s cocoon was later accidentally discovered by the superhuman Avengers, who called in the Fantastic Four’s Reed Richards, AKA Mister Fantastic, to examine it. Richards used bio-radiants to stimulate Grey’s mind, which brought Grey out of her coma-like state and allowed her to break free of the cocoon, although unintentionally damaging her access to her telepathic powers. Returning to her parent’s home while they were away, Grey learned of all that had transpired during her absence via a Shi’ar holo-empathic matrix crystal that had been imbued with a portion of the Jean Grey/Phoenix impostor’s essence (given as a gift to Grey’s parents, who thought her dead). While initially shocked by what had occurred, Grey took great solace in knowing she had inadvertently saved creation by influencing the Phoenix Force to end its life as “Jean Grey.” Grey was then reunited with her former X-Men teammates, Angel, Beast, Iceman and Cyclops, the latter leaving Pryor and their new son, Nathan, to be with Grey, keeping his marriage a secret. Together they formed X-Factor, posing as mutant hunters, but secretly rescuing and training mutants in the use of their abilities. 

Grey soon learned of Scott’s marriage and son and felt betrayed by her teammates for keeping this from her. After Angel was hospitalized following injuries sustained during the Marauders’ massacre of the underground mutant community the Morlocks, Grey learned her sister, Sara, had become a mutant rights activist, and she became concerned for Sara’s safety. Grey and Summers went to Sara’s house and found all her personal effects missing moments before it was firebombed by mutant haters. Soon after, X-Factor bore witness to Angel’s apparent suicide and the anti-mutant sentiments that tainted his memorial service. Around this time, X-Factor abandoned their mutant hunting façade, and began overtly acting as mutant Super Heroes. 

Soon after, believing her usefulness was at an end, Sinister made Summers believe Pryor was dead, and then tried to kill Pryor. However, she survived multiple assassination attempts by Sinister’s Marauders, eventually reuniting with the X-Men, but not telling Summers she was alive. After learning of Pryor’s “death,” Summers accused Grey of being Phoenix, which she angrily denied. Their argument devolved into a super-battle that ended after the mutant-power-dampener Leech temporarily canceled out their powers. Eventually, Grey convinced Summers that she had never been Phoenix, and even asked him to show her the lunar site of Phoenix’s “death.” 

During a battle against eternal mutant En Sabah Nur, AKA Apocalypse’s Horsemen, Grey and her teammates discovered Angel was still alive but had been twisted by Apocalypse into becoming his metal-winged Horseman Death. Angel ultimately overcame Apocalypse’s reprogramming and rejoined X-Factor in opposing him. Following Apocalypse’s defeat, X-Factor became public celebrities, and Grey reconciled with Summers, the two renewing their relationship. Shortly thereafter, she and Summers watched the televised seeming death of the X-Men and their ally Madelyne Pryor, which confused matters between Grey and Summers, who believed Pryor had been dead.

Grey finally reunited with her parents, after which she and Summers set about locating Summers’ missing son, Nathan. Their search led them to the orphanage where Summers lived after his parents’ seeming death while Summers was a boy. The pair uncovered a secret laboratory beneath the orphanage and Summers’ son therein, but were attacked by the mutant cyborgs Nanny, Orphan-Maker, and the Lost Boys (and Girls), who counted amongst their number Grey’s nephew Joey and niece Gailyn as the super-powered ShatterBox. As Nanny’s children were all orphans, Grey feared the worst for her sister. Defeating Nanny and Orphan-Maker, Grey and Summers failed to prevent Nathan from being kidnapped by demons as part of an attempted invasion of Earth spearheaded by a very-much-alive Madelyne Pryor, whose powers had finally awakened and been corrupted by the limbo (Otherplace) demon S’ym. During the invasion, X-Factor battled, then teamed up with the X-Men. Grey was passionately kissed by Wolverine and joyfully reunited with Storm. Pryor ultimately confronted Grey, during which Grey learned Pryor’s true origins. Facing defeat, Pryor sought to sacrifice Nathan in a power blast that proved fatal to Pryor, too; however, Summers saved Nathan. As her last act, Pryor telepathically linked with Grey, seeking to pull Grey into death with her. To survive, Grey reclaimed the previously rejected portion of her consciousness within Pryor, absorbing aspects of both Pryor and Phoenix’s personalities and memories as well. Grey was then attacked by Mister Sinister, who sought to destroy the memories Grey had absorbed. She was saved when Summers seemingly slew Sinister. 

Soon after, Grey began bonding with baby Nathan and pondering motherhood. Following another encounter with Nanny and Orphan-Maker, Grey rescued her nephew and niece; however, due to Nanny’s brainwashing, they didn’t recognize her, but they did recognize their grandparents and so Grey left them with her parents. After Jean was briefly influenced by the Deviant Ghaur into becoming one of the seven Brides of Set in an attempt to bring the serpentine Elder God back to Earth, X-Factor was transported to a wartorn planet that was set to be judged by the cosmic Celestials. There, both the Phoenix and Pryor personalities fought to control Grey’s mind until Grey purged these personalities in a massive energy blast that also repelled the Celestial Arishem, leaving her with Phoenix and Pryor’s memories but not their personalities/egos. 

Back on Earth, Summers finally proposed to Grey, but despite loving him she refused, wishing to find her own identity again before committing to marriage. Grey soon met Rachel Summers, the daughter of her and Summers’ Earth-811 (“Days of Future Past”) counterparts. Feeling trapped by a future she had no say in, Grey initially rejected Rachel, but gradually came to accept and befriend her. Later, when X-Factor was attacked by Apocalypse’s Dark Riders, Grey was confronted by the telepathic Psynapse who forced her to relive the death of her childhood friend Annie; the traumatic experience reactivated Grey’s own lost telepathy. But after Nathan was infected with a techno-organic virus by Apocalypse, Summers was forced to send him to the 38th century of Earth-4935 with a member of the antiApocalypse Clan Askani to be healed; Grey lost the baby she had come to almost consider her own.

Back on Earth, Summers finally proposed to Grey, but despite loving him she refused, wishing to find her own identity again before committing to marriage. Grey soon met Rachel Summers, the daughter of her and Summers’ Earth-811 (“Days of Future Past”) counterparts. Feeling trapped by a future she had no say in, Grey initially rejected Rachel, but gradually came to accept and befriend her. 

Later, when X-Factor was attacked by Apocalypse’s Dark Riders, Grey was confronted by the telepathic Psynapse who forced her to relive the death of her childhood friend Annie; the traumatic experience reactivated Grey’s own lost telepathy. But after Nathan was infected with a techno-organic virus by Apocalypse, Summers was forced to send him to the 38th century of Earth-4935 with a member of the anti-Apocalypse Clan Askani to be healed; Grey lost the baby she had come to almost consider her own.

Eventually, despite their past troubles and recent unwarranted flirtations toward Cyclops from their mentally troubled teammate Elizabeth Braddock, AKA Psylocke, Grey and Summers committed to one another. Soon after, Grey proposed to Summers, and he accepted. The pair were married on the grounds of the Xavier Institute, then honeymooned in St. Barts. There they were located by Clan Askani, led by a time-displaced Rachel Summers (who had diverged into two beings during her time travels), who pulled both their psyches into Earth-4935’s 38th century and placed them in cloned bodies to help safeguard the infant Nathan from that reality’s Apocalypse’s sinister plans. As Redd and Slym, Grey and Summers got a second chance with Nathan, spending 12 years raising him, albeit while hiding their true identities from him. Their time in the future culminated in a climactic battle against Apocalypse and another parting of ways with Nathan. Before sending Grey and Summers home, Rachel Summers asked Grey to take the name “Phoenix,” a request that Grey honored. Upon their return, Grey finally learned the fate of her sister, Sara, when she and Summers became involved in the X-Men’s battle against the techno-organic alien Phalanx, which had absorbed Sara into their collective; Sara apparently died when the collective was destroyed to save Earth.

Following massive battles against the power mad Onslaught (an amalgamation of Xavier and Magneto’s dark egos), and a subsequent attack on the X-Men by the technological Bastion and his anti-mutant Operation: Zero Tolerance, Grey and Summers took an extended leave from the X-Men for Summers to recover from serious injuries he had sustained. While in Alaska, Grey explored the full extent of her powers and symbolically adopted the costume the Phoenix Force wore while impersonating Grey; however, her development was cut short by the backlash of a battle between Psylocke and Shadow King, which temporarily canceled out psionic abilities worldwide. After regaining her powers, Grey returned with Summers to the X-Men to find the team disbanded by Xavier, who was secretly trying to flush out infiltrators within the team. When approached for help by the childlike nano-technological Mannites, Grey, Summers and Wolverine (actually the Skrull imposter Xavier was seeking) formed an ad-hoc team to protect them from Apocalypse’s newest Horseman Death (secretly the true Wolverine, brainwashed by Apocalypse). Subsequently, Grey learned she was one of “the Twelve,” a group of mutants destined to usher in a golden age for mutantkind. This destiny was co-opted by Apocalypse, who sought to use the Twelve to gain more power. While opposing Apocalypse, Summers sacrificed himself to defeat the villain, and became possessed by him. 

Grey and Cable later freed Summers from his possession by Apocalypse, but the experience had drastically changed him, his marriage to Grey suffering as a result of Summers’ damaged psyche and harder-edged personality. However, the couple never dealt with their issues, as Grey assumed the position of Xavier Institute’s acting headmistress after Xavier temporarily left to spend time in the interstellar Shi’ar Empire; the X-Men were unaware Xavier’s mind had been taken over by his previously unknown malevolent psychic twin, Cassandra Nova

Grey resumed her earlier exploration of her powers, and during an attack by the mutant organ harvesting U-Men, she fully manifested the Phoenix powers in their iconic bird of fire display, causing alarm for her friends and teammates. Feeling empowered, Grey became less insecure about her relationship troubles with Summers. After learning of Nova and Xavier’s plight, Grey temporarily took Xavier’s entire psyche and consciousness within her own, then used the Cerebra computer to temporarily place a piece of Xavier’s consciousness into the mind of every living mutant on Earth to save him from Nova; Nova was subsequently defeated, and Xavier’s psyche returned to his body. Thereafter, Xavier and Grey began exploring Grey’s power increase, learning the Phoenix Force was manifesting within Grey’s mind. 

Trying to heal his psychic wounds, Summers asked telepath Emma Frost (now an X-Man) for therapy, their sessions soon turning into a psychic affair. When Grey learned of this, she angrily confronted Frost and telepathically forced Frost to relive the painful memories and failures of her life. Grey was placated after Summers had her read his memories to see he had remained physically faithful to her. After Frost’s diamond form was shattered in an assassination attempt orchestrated by Frost’s bitter former student Esme Cuckoo, Jean later tapped into the Phoenix Force to reassemble Frost’s body, reconstituting Emma’s consciousness. 

Following an attack on the X-Men by a Magneto imposter (Xorn), Grey and Wolverine were trapped by Xorn on a space station and sent hurtling into the sun, while he devastated and conquered New York City as “Magneto.” As Grey and Wolverine neared the sun, seeing no hope for survival and wanting to spare her further suffering, Wolverine killed Grey, an act that inadvertently released the Phoenix Force consciousness within her. It resurrected Grey, who returned the two to Earth. There, Grey helped the X-Men oppose the faux Magneto, but during the battle, Grey was killed by a lethal electromagnetic pulse that also shattered the Phoenix Force into billions of pieces. Grey’s body was buried in the Xavier Institute’s graveyard, while her consciousness was raised to a higher level of existence.

Sometime later, while incubating in the core of creation known as the White Hot Room, the Force was ripped back to reality by a device that forcibly reconstituted it, as part of a Shi’ar plan to destroy the Phoenix Force forever. Injured and driven insane by its forced resurrection, the Force fell to Earth and sought a way to heal itself. It searched for Summers, hoping he could help restore its shattered self by using his optic energies as sustenance; but the Force found Grey’s grave instead and resurrected her to house its power once more. Struggling for control while resisting the Force’s resurrection, Grey allowed Wolverine to kill her; however, the Force simply resurrected her again. Subsequent deaths caused by Wolverine eventually weakened the Force, allowing Grey’s consciousness to take control long enough to bury herself deep in the waters and ice below the Arctic North. Still seeking to heal itself, the Force left Grey’s frozen and trapped body and possessed the body of Emma Frost, but was quickly imprisoned by the X-Men in a specially designed containment chamber. Breaking free, the Force found itself confronted by Grey, who had been freed from the ice by the X-Men. The Force ultimately realized that Grey was its prime host and so left Emma to fully merge with her. After being shown the deep love that every X-Man felt for Grey, the Force saved the X-Men from a Shi’ar weapon of mass destruction fired with the intent of killing the Force. After a moment of closure with Summers, Grey convinced the Force to return both of them to the White Hot Room to heal. 

Sometime later, Madelyne Pryor returned as a psychic entity and sought Grey’s body as a host for her consciousness. However, the X-Men exhumed Grey’s body (having been returned to its grave), and replaced it with an unidentified corpse. When Pryor tried to possess this corpse, her consciousness was apparently destroyed, as the corpse’s DNA was not powerful enough to contain her energies. 

When strange psychic phenomena occurred all over the world, including a large bird flaring out of the sun and an explosion on the moon, the X-Men investigated and realized that the Phoenix Force had once again returned. Not only that but Jean Grey had also returned, resurrected and living a simple life in the suburbs. The X-Men found Grey at a diner where the Phoenix Force was present as well and sent Earth-29923’s Logan, AKA Wolverine, in to assess the situation and see if the Phoenix had already possessed her. When Logan revealed that she was living in a dream world created by the Phoenix, the Phoenix made itself known and through Grey lashed out, but Grey was able to break free of its control. She confronted the Phoenix entity which portrayed itself as a fiery bird, and decided she would no longer suffer the Phoenix’s illusions. The Phoenix presented her with past loved ones long since dead, including Summers who had died from exposure to Terrigen Mists. Knowing she couldn’t accept anything the Phoenix gave her, she killed Scott, choosing the pain of loss over playing god and encouraged the Phoenix to move on without her. The Phoenix resisted at first and then the flame of the Phoenix dissipated in Jean’s hands.

In a fight against the mutant time-traveling Ahab alongside the younger time-displaced X-Men, including Grey’s younger self, a young Cable appeared and sent the young X-Men back to their time. In fighting Manon, one of Ahab’s hounds, the adult Grey suddenly possessed her younger self’s memories from the time-displacement, which meant that the young X-Men closed the time loop that they created upon their arrival.

Grey was soon thrust into a world created with a Life Seed and Nate Grey, AKA X-Man, her future alternate reality son from Earth-295. There, she was part of the X-Men, and mutants lived in peace where relationships were outlawed. She engaged in a forbidden romance with Lucas Bishop, AKA Bishop, and they were soon discovered by this world’s police, Department X. Bishop was erased while Jeans’ memories were wiped of their relationship, though she sensed something wasn’t right afterward. She joined the X-Men against any revolutionaries spouting the need for connection and used her telepathic powers to control them, dispersing protestors, and helping Nate close rifts in their world, rifts that contained past memories by his account. Soon, she and the X-Men investigated the murder of Moneta and member Nature Girl conferred with bacterial witnesses, they learned that Nate and Apocalypse created this false reality. When Bishop’s belongings turned up, Jean interacted with them and they jogged her memory and it confirmed that their reality was indeed manufactured by Nate. This discovery led to a confrontation with Nate that culminated in his decision to undo the reality as it took a toll on him.

Returning to her home reality along with all the displaced mutants, Grey returned to her moniker of Marvel Girl. When Professor X, Magento and Moira MacTaggert established the sovereign mutant nation-state of Krakoa, Grey joined them with a host of other mutants. She helped the X-Men infiltrate Orchis, an anti-mutant organization, and destroy the Mother Mold, which would create Nimrod, a deadly mutant-killing Sentinel. They succeeded but most of the team died trying to escape Orchis. Grey and Summers, who had been resurrected, attempted to escape as well but Orchis’ member Dr. Alia Gregor killed Summers in revenge for slaying her husband. Despite Grey making it into an escape pod, it was, too, destroyed by Orchis. Grey and the entire team were resurrected on Krakoa into cloned bodies thanks to The Five, mutants with the combined power of resurrection, and thanks to Cerebro which housed copies of their memories. For saving mutants from Nimrod, Grey and the X-Men were celebrated as heroes.

Grey soon joined the Quiet Council of Krakoa, representing the empathetic members of the X-Men, and voted on important matters such as the nation’s tenets and sending irredeemable mutants into exile. It was at this time that Grey and Frost shared beverages at a celebration and seemed to bury the hatchet over the past psychic affair Frost had with Scott. When Xavier was slain by infiltrating mercenaries, Grey helped in his resurrection and he placed her on a secret X-Force team. 

When Grey and Summers’ son, Nathan, was trapped in Otherworld, she left the council and in rescuing him, formed a new team of X-Men with Summers. They decided the new members by way of an election, held at the first Hellfire Gala. She soon aided her fellow mutants against Nightmare and Cordyceps Jones. When Druig of the Eternals came to believe Mutants were Deviants and attacked mutants. A Celestial known as the Progenitor was brought in to end the conflict but instead placed judgment upon humanity, killing Earth’s heroes, and failed Grey for the times she was a violent bully and for destroying a world as the Phoenix. Though the Progenitor’s judgment of her was hypocritical considering the destruction the Celestial had already enacted. She confronted the Progenitor about its hypocrisy alongside Tony Stark, AKA Iron Man, who encouraged the Celestial to be better. The Progenitor questioned whether it was a worthy god and was judged to be unworthy by the Eternal Ajak and as such the Celestial revived everyone it had slain and gave its power to Ajak. Grey came to realize that she and the mutants, too, needed to share their power of resurrection with humanity, and as such established the Phoenix Foundation that would prioritize resurrecting formerly sick children. 

Grey soon faced Madelyn Pryor again, who had become the leader of Limbo and attacked New York. When she confronted Pryor, the latter revealed she desired Grey’s memories of her son Nathan. Grey gave her what she wanted and Pryor ceased her attack. Grey’s next opponent was a vengeful Nightmare, who created a conflict with the Brood. Grey desired a peaceful solution for the Brood where Cyclops demanded a more permanent end to the species, causing a rift between them. The result was to have their ally Broo oversee the Brood and she then departed the X-Men.

At the third Hellfire Gala, Orchis attacked with Nimrod leading the ambush, and though Grey used her telekinesis to shield everyone, Moira killed her. Before she died, she tricked one of Orchis’ members into thinking he had recruited Firestar to their cause, and said goodbye to Summers who was also mortally wounded.

Jean Grey
Essential Reading
Jean Grey
As one of Professor Xavier’s first students and one of the founding members of the X-Men, Jean Grey has been a central figure among mutant super heroes since the beginning. Already one of the world’s most gifted telepaths and telekinetics, Jean’s abilities multiplied tenfold after being possessed by the all-powerful Phoenix Force!