Chris Claremont: Mind Control Central is your one-stop shop for the endless weird, kinky, and just generally fucked-up variations on hypnosis, possession, perversion, and otherwise weirdly fetishistic transmogrification in the pages of his myriad X-titles, mostly from the late '80s. Read enough of it, and you'll marvel that your mind is still your own.

That Chris Claremont Sure Does Love His Mind Control...

Going through this this blog is oddly poignant, because I really did love the X-Men back in the early-to-mid '80s. (That's The Uncanny X-Men, and maybe just a little bit of the New Mutants.) The team members felt real and believable in a way that most comic book characters didn't, and for a long time I didn't even think of X-Men as a "superhero" book precisely because of the writing. Claremont's rule about never letting the heroines be "the girl" is the one thing that really stuck with me, and on the whole I see him, much like old-school Doctor Who, as a mostly positive influence on my developing preadolescent worldview. The parallel is kind of fitting, since, like the good Doctor, Claremont originally hailed from England... and, also like that venerable institution, his writing went seriously off the rails circa 1985 or so. As on Doctor Who, beloved characters became unrecognizable, stories focused on bizarre, violent plot developments, recondite continuity, and nothing was ever the same as it was again... though maybe that was the whole point...

But, as a certain XXXL-wearing, Dreamsicle-colored test pilot might say, enough of my yappin.' Take a gander at some of the craziness that animated the franchise back in the Reagan Era and beyond... and be glad you didn't have four or five writing deadlines breathing down your neck every month. And do also check out the great X-Men fan podcast, Rachel and Miles X-Plain The X-Men, which is a terrific, fun-filled look at the insane storytelling architecture Claremont's feverish mind created back in the '70s, and continues to shape in these days of future past...