At the Hellfire gala, Jean Gray wears a perfect look designed by Russell Dauterman that would be a perfect basis for a new X-Men costume.
WARNING: The following contains spoilers for VC’s X-Men # 21, Nick Dragotta, Russell Dauterman, Lucas Werneck, Sara Pichelli, Frank Martin, Matthew Wilson, Sunny Gho, Nolan Woodard and Clayton Cowles, on sale now .
Over the years, Jean Gray has undergone several different costume changes. While she has had a lot of iconic looks, her different looks weren’t always united by one common design choice. However, the Hellfire Gala gave Jean an outfit that mixes the best aspects of his high-profile costumes into a Russell Dauterman-designed costume that ranks among his best.
Since the years 2019 House of X # 1, by Jonathan Hickman and Pepe Larraz, Jean reverted to her Marvel Girl outfit from the ’60s and early’ 70s. There is some appeal to this costume, given the nostalgia for the early X-Men. Plus, Jean wore her Marvel Girl costume in the 1980s. Strange X-Men # 137, by Chris Claremont and John Byrne, when she was tried by the Shi’ar Empire for the crimes of the Black Phoenix. Jean donned his Marvel Girl costume in an effort to reject the destructive power of the Phoenix. In this way, the Marvel Girl costume is important to Jean’s independence from the Phoenix, and her return echoes her recent rejection of the Phoenix Force.
While Jean’s Hellfire Gala outfit recalls aspects of this Marvel Girl costume, it modernizes it and gives Jean a striking Krakoan update that matches his status as one of Marvel’s most important mutant leaders.
The Hellfire Gala outfit has the same yellow / green color scheme as Jean’s Marvel Girl costume, without the old-fashioned miniskirt or yellow boots. At the same time, this color scheme matches Jean’s traditional Phoenix costume. solidify green as the main color of his costume without the baggage associated with the Phoenix Force.
The predominantly green outfit complements Jean’s red hair perfectly, making the color really pop. The fingerless gloves add an extra touch of style, and the gold accents around the outfit contrast well with the green of the jumpsuit. Likewise, the yellow dress goes well with Jean’s green outfit, and it would be perfect while Jean uses his telekinesis to fly.
Between this golden trim and its cape, this costume also makes yellow its secondary costume color. From her very first X-Men uniform designed by Jack Kirby to the yellow Phoenix symbol of her cosmic costume designed by Dave Cockrum to her look from the Jim Lee era, this choice makes Jean’s look one-piece with many of her previous looks, and it pairs well with Wolverine, Cyclops, and the other X-Men who generally incorporate some degree of yellow into their appearance.
The floating helmet “x” also highlights the power of Jean and the emerging mutant culture of Krakoa. This helmet accentuates Jean’s ability for telekinesis, bringing his appearance into the Krakoan era. Jean’s tiara ties her nicely to the mutant culture, emphasizing her “royal” presence in Krakoan society. Jean’s telepathic facilitation of the X-Men election not only showcases the unique nature of Krakoan society, but also reinforces its importance within that culture. Overall, Jean’s Hellfire Gala look would be a great new costume. A large detail added to the center of Jean’s outfit is a gold “x”. It’s a nice touch, highlighting Jean’s loyalty not only to the Mutants, but to the X-Men.
As a leading mutant, Jean deserves an outfit unique to Krakoan like her Hellfire Gala look. Plus, this tiara fits Jean’s’ 90s helmet, which was much more confined.
Combining features from Jean’s Marvel Girl, Phoenix, and ’90s costumes, this Hellfire Gala outfit would be a perfect base for a new field outfit. The look should probably be made a bit more practical by adding material to the open back, turning heels into practical shoes, and shortening the dress to a standard length cape, just to make jeans more mobile. Still, those would be minor adjustments to an otherwise perfect look for Jean.
As a founding member of the team and leader of the new X-Men line, Jean Gray needs a look that matches his life after the Phoenix, not one that is simply reminiscent of his life before. With this chic look that recalls her past without imitating it, Jean’s Hellfire Gala outfit is too good to hang up in the closet after an event.
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