In 2019, Uncanny X-Men hinted at the return of Scott Summers and Emma Frost’s romance. In the wake of the (mostly recent) House of X/Powers of X relaunch, the titles seem to be subtly hinting that the two have repaired their relationship, lighting up the panels with their singular chemistry every time they’re assembled together. (Who could forget “I live to serve” from X-Men/Fantastic Four?). With post-Valentine’s Day romance still in the air, here are our favorite Scott/Emma stories.
With their reuniting in the current era, hopefully this list can grow soon (and, doubly hopeful, the two share more scenes together in the coming months). But as of now, these series serve as a great reminder of what made this once-polarizing pairing work so well together in the end.
And be warned: For this piece, we’re avoiding the obvious entries, and instead going more for the tales that are less familiar or celebrated.
Phoenix: Endsong #1-5
In its own way, Phoenix: Endsong does a lot of what Astonishing X-Men tried to accomplish: doing the legwork to set up Scott and Emma in their early days. The entire story handles the Scott/Jean/Emma love triangle in the most respectable way, adding a layer of realism to their story through Jean and Scott’s acceptance that the two had simply fallen out of love in their final days together. Faults are acknowledged, peace is made between characters (and within themselves), and Jean Grey gets the beautiful send-off she deserved. Endsong does a great job of proving what makes Scott and Emma work so well together, from the ways they lift each other up to be better to the ways they challenge each other to accept happiness.
Uncanny X-Men #495
The 2000s were a great time for Scott fans — he was challenging himself by becoming the leader he was always meant to be, stepping into the role of the leader of mutantkind even if it was an awkward fit on him at times. As he stood up to the plate, the weight of that role often threatened to crush him, but having Emma as his support system was one of the most special ways his story unfolded. When stress hits an all-time high, Emma does the impossible — she actually convinces him to go on vacation with him. What unfolds isn’t just some of the best Scott/Emma content, but an acknowledgment of what makes them so special together. Scott gives full permission to read his mind to her out of trust, and Emma proves to Shana that she knows Scott Summers inside and out.
Uncanny X-Men #518-519
While the entirety of Matt Fraction’s X-Men run does incredible character work for both Scott and Emma as individuals, his run does a lot to prove what makes them work so well together as a couple and as a team. Uncanny X-Men #518-519 features one of the best Scott/Emma arcs in his run, showcasing the intense lengths they’ll go to for one another and all that they’re willing to risk for each other. If Utopia was one of the biggest challenges in Scott’s life, he was able to get through it only because he had Emma by his side.
Dark X-Men: The Confession
Don’t let the cover fool you, this is probably the quintessential Scott/Emma issue. If anyone was ever wondering what made this couple so beloved for so many 2000s X-Men fans, this issue is an extremely compelling case to prove said point. It’s a comic about forgiveness and working with someone you love to lift you up, knowing that they’ll love even the darkest parts of yourself that you hate. By the issue’s end, the two have sworn full, eternal trust — it’s quite a feat! It highlights the very crux of their relationship, how he encourages her to forgive herself and believe she’s worthy of love and she encourages him to be a better leader and forgive himself as well. It’s about two flawed people who heal together, the very definition of Scott and Emma’s relationship.
The entire Heralds mini is certainly cute, but it’s only #1 that’s certainly a must-read for any Scott/Emma fans. For a couple that often had the world on their shoulders, it’s nice to see them unwind — and even to get a hint of Scott’s playful side. The opening pages with the two of them in Paris, Vegas are among the best the couple ever has — and Scott teasing her by throwing her a birthday party leads to some unexpected humor involving Emma and several other superheroines across the Marvel Universe.
Cable (2008) #6
An unexpected issue, but an important one nonetheless, Cable #6 shows the immense pressure Scott had on his shoulders during the Utopia era and the ways he had to lean on Emma for support. A hallmark of the Scott/Emma relationship is how they know what each other needs and provide the support they need to move forward, becoming the best versions of themselves along the way. She teases him to add levity to a dark situation, offers him a shoulder to lean on, and gives him the space he needs to make peace with himself. It’s an issue that highlights what makes their relationship so mature and so special.
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