This is why nobody likes Jean Grey, although maybe they should.

Earlier this year, a time-displaced team of the original five X-Men (Cyclops, Jean, Beast, Angel, and Iceman) were transported into the future to confront what would become of their adult selves.

Scott was now a terrorist, Jean was dead a few times over, Beast was furry and blue, and Angel was a former Horseman of Death. For all of the odd things that came to pass for the team, though, the younger Iceman quickly found that not all that much had changed for him in his adulthood. Except for one thing.

The older Bobby Drake is living as a straight man. Young Bobby, we learn, is secretly gay. In a telepathically-charged heart to heart, the young Jean Grey admitted to the young Bobby that she knew that he was gay and that she was fine with it. Initially distraught at having been outed, Bobby asked what it meant that his older self had seemingly managed to switch teams.


Though the story might have rubbed some long-term Iceman fans the wrong way, making the younger Bobby own up to his sexuality was an interesting choice by Marvel to explore some of the ways in which queer identities have evolved over the years.

Young Bobby, suddenly plucked from the early '60s and dropped into the much more progressive present, found it easier to admit his feelings to Jean. The older Bobby, apparently never had that luxury. Though we often speak about queerness as an immutable part of our identities, for many people sexuality is more fluid and often influenced by their surroundings.

What could have possibly happened to Iceman between his teenage years and his early forties to make it easier for him to live as a straight man was unclear, but it's a conversation that the two mutants are finally having with one another in a frank way.


Up until now, the two Icemen had yet to discuss the slight difference in their supposed sexual identities, but in this week's Uncanny X-Men, they finally discuss what's been on Bobby's mind.