Marvel Explains Why Jean Grey is the Most Powerful X—Men Psychic

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Warning! There are spoilers ahead for Immortal X-Men #4!

Marvel once again hints that Jean Grey is the most powerful psychic of the X—Men. In an intimate moment at the beginning of Kieron Gillen and Michael Bandini’s Immortal X-Men #4, Emma Frost confesses why she thinks Gene is superior to her, while raising questions about what makes a great telepath.

Emma talks in full about the Immortal X-Men #4 from her bedroom, where she assumed her indestructible diamond form, in which she is known to be unable to attack or undergo a telepathic attack because “a psychic is most vulnerable in a dream.” This new habit also makes her think about how she uses her mental abilities to begin with and whether she will ever be able to reach her full potential.

Much of Emma’s training and application involves mental manipulation. This is how she went about her business before she joined the X-Men; it was a trademark of her long-standing position in the Hellfire Club and a skill for which Kingpin once hired her. Being the perfect extension of her own superiority complex, Emma has learned to use the deepest fears and insecurities in her victims to direct them to the desired result. But while Emma’s methods require her to look at people only as puppets, she believes that Jean’s greater source of empathy ultimately makes her a stronger psychic. Although Emma prides herself on her untouchability, she suspects that it is this quality that prevents her from achieving unity with another mind.

Later, Emma refers to Xavier as well, wondering how he can cope with the cacophonous influx of emotions from every mind on Earth. But she and Jean have a much more complicated story, given the romance between Emma and Cyclops. Although they seem to have buried the hatchet, at least for now, Emma is known to hold a grudge. To see her admit that she’s not quite on Jean’s level—even to herself—is a sign of her greatly increased respect.

Overall, Marvel is still figuring out how strong Jean Grey is. Recently, she had been restraining Cyclops’ optical explosions with her telekinesis, a feat she had previously only been able to accomplish with the Phoenix Force. When Jean was young and still had the name “Miracle Girl”, it was not uncommon to see her faint from too much mental strain or contribution. But with Emma’s reframing, perhaps it’s an indicator of how great Gray’s psionic abilities are. The Marvel universe is full of incredible psychics, but over time it becomes clear that no one can compare with Jean Grey from the X-Men.

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