- Who Am I...
Dark Phoenix is an extremely powerful superhuman entity closely affiliated with Jean Grey.
- Romantic Interests
- My Story Is...
Dark Phoenix was a human named Jean Grey. The Phoenix Force’s fall from grace – a state wherein it became corrupted by power. The Phoenix entity became too strong to control, for the merely human aspects it had acquired from Jean, but the other X-Men had no way to know what was happening and little chance of preventing a tragedy. Professor X helped Jean establish “psychic circuit breakers” in her mind, but they became less and less effective.
She was thus an easy target for the illusionist Mastermind, who needed a trophy to join the Inner Circle of the prestigious (and infamous) Hellfire Club. With the help of a psionic device created by the club’s White Queen, Emma Frost, Mastermind made Jean believe that she was his 18th-century lover, Lady Grey. Jean joined the club as their Black Queen, which would allow her to relish the extremes of human emotion and sensuality. When the X-Men came to her rescue, Jean’s true love, Cyclops, faced Mastermind in a psychic duel and was defeated. His “death” broke Mastermind’s hold over Jean’s psyche–as well as any control that Jean had over the Phoenix. It brushed aside the X-Men and departed for the heavens.
To sate its hunger, the (now Dark) Phoenix flew to a distant galaxy and devoured the star of the D’Bari system. The resulting supernova killed billions of innocent people. A Shi’ar vessel attacked it and managed to alert the Shi’ar Empress Lilandra before they were destroyed. The empress called a council of her intergalactic counterparts, including the Kree and Skrull empires. They concluded that, for the rest of the universe to live, Dark Phoenix must die.
Meanwhile, the Beast had found a way to neutralize Phoenix’s power temporarily. When it returned to Earth, the X-Men held it at bay while Professor X rebuilt the circuit breakers in Jean’s mind. At that moment the Shi’ar arrived and teleported everyone aboard their flagship. Lilandra announced that Phoenix, and thus Jean Grey-Summers, would have to die. Jean received a Kree weapon so that she could “do the right thing.” Professor X, unwilling to give up on one of his pupils, but romantically involved with Lilandra, challenged her to Arin’n Haelar, a Shi’ar duel of honor that cannot be refused. Professor X named the X-Men as his champions in the duel, Lilandra her Imperial Guard.
The X-Men Face the Dark Phoenix
The duel took place the next day in the Blue Area of the Moon. The Imperial Guard made short work of the X-Men, leaving Cyclops and Phoenix to make a final stand. A stray bolt hit Cyclops. Jean’s control broke, and she became the Dark Phoenix again. Lilandra ordered Plan Omega, which would destroy the whole solar system in hopes of eliminating Dark Phoenix as well. Professor X ordered the X-Men to subdue Jean so that Plan Omega would not be necessary, and they managed to subdue the Phoenix for a brief time. In this moment of lucidity, Jean took Cyclops to a back alley, where she bade him an emotional farewell and turned the Kree weapon on herself.
The story ends with Uatu the Watcher’s comment: “Jean Grey could have lived to become a god, but it was more important to her that she died as a human.”
Known Powers: Like Jean Grey-Summers, the Dark Phoenix used telepathy and telekinesis, but at a much higher level. She was able to rearrange the molecular structure of matter and fly at supersonic speeds. Using the Phoenix Force, she could travel through hyperspace and destroy Shi’ar battlecruisers with little effort.
Known Abilities: Because Phoenix was linked to Jean’s psyche, she maintained a psychic link with Cyclops.
Strength Level: As Jean Grey-Summers, the Phoenix possessed the normal human strength of a woman of her age, height, and build who engaged in moderate regular exercise. Using her cosmic powers and telekinesis, Phoenix could lift an unknown amount, probably in the range of thousands of tons.