Escape From Eldraine!
I’ve had the premise for this for a while, and just finally drew it. I want to point out that I liked Gambit (Remy LeBeau) a whole lot when he was introduced in the X-Men, way back in the nineties. His visual design was cool and different, Chris Claremont wrote him as one of the fun cast members pretty excellently, and the art design of his powers was cool on the page. Drawn often by Jim Lee, he came together as a kind of sudden staple of the X-Men cast.
He was also quintessentially “of the nineties,” and had real trouble making it past that time frame while maintaining relevance. Comics changed, the visual aesthetic of comics changed, and Gambit didn’t really shift that well with those changing narratives and times. I’m fairly certain that he hasn’t been drawn in the Adequacy strip, and that seemed like an oversight to me, since again, I really liked the character.
That’s not nearly the whole thing that drove today’s content though.
Gambit and Cap are dressed up…heck, Cap is in a dress. That happens rarely. That’s because tonight is the Homecoming Game and Dance at the Edu-Mountain, even though in many literal ways the staff has failed to understand the meaning of “Homecoming.” Well, that’s part of the reason that Cap is in a dress.
This will be a weirdly rambly post, by the way.
The new Magic: The Gathering Pre-Release, “Throne of Eldraine” is also today, and for the weekend. There has been a lot of hype for it, and an excellent trailer video, and all sorts of other stuff. I’ve been meaning to draw stuff going into it, getting into the hype…but really haven’t felt it move the needle on my creativity. In part, the princesses yesterday were a bit of a nod to that, since “Throne of Eldraine” takes its own visual design cues from Arthurian Legends and Fairy Tales. Which you’d think I’d be super excited about…except…not as much as I thought.
In addition to that, I had a seriously @#$%ed up experience with a friend in my Adult Life, outside of school, over the Pre-Release event. Like, the kind of thing where I pretty much resolved on the spot, “hard pass on Pre-Release,” and just kept it to myself. That also successfully dragged down my enthusiasm for the set further, which wasn’t great. Right now, I have a different friend trying to convince me that I shouldn’t pass on the set, and the various Standard tournaments within it.
Hard to say how that will go. My endorsement of the Eldraine setting, that is. With Eldraine being a fairy tale setting though, I was definitely thinking about Cap wearing a dress. Or some sort of costume redesign that is more in line with her general “rough around the edges” demeanor.
At this point, that’s out the window. So much so that I wanted to do a sci-fi setting, and a more Dave Cockrum (he was a MAJOR X-Men artist) inspired sc-fi dress. Hence why Gambit and Cap are sneaking around some alien planet in the Shi’Ar Empire, with Shi’Ar Space Rambos looking for them. Who knows what the mission is, I didn’t think it out. I imagine it has to do with that tower in the background, but that’s just because I’ve been thinking about Urza’s Tower all week.
And now, from all of that rambling, we are back to Gambit. Gambit is cool. Sure. That’s without a doubt.
Those Shi’Ar Rambos are no joke, though. Each one can bench press one ton, and has far greater than human endurance and stamina. Every one of those Rambos is wearing an advanced alloy armor that makes them able to take some licks, and carrying laser rifles, laser guns, and laser swords. That’s a lot of lasers per Rambo, True Believers.
Gambit is going to throw two exploding cards at them. That’s his plan. He will probably do a backflip of some kind. His powers are listed as “Kinetic conversion and acceleration, Self-charging, Static generation, Skilled card-thrower, and Superhuman charm.” Is that really competitive here? When I drew it, I thought not. Clearly.
I did a bit of research.
Gambit is a mutant with the ability to convert the potential energy stored in an inanimate object into pure light kinetic energy, thus “charging” that item with highly explosive results. He prefers to charge smaller objects, such as his ever-present playing cards, as the time required to charge them is greatly reduced and they are much easier for him to throw. The only real limitation to this ability is the time required to charge the object: the larger it is the more time it takes to charge. Most charging takes place through direct skin contact. The power of his explosions is dependent on the mass of the object he is charging: for example, a charged playing card explodes with the force of a grenade.
So he’s going to throw two “grenades” at a crowd of Space Rambos. At least he has “skilled card thrower” on that list.
Beyond that, what the @#$% is “Self Charging?” I checked.
Gambit’s ability to tap into kinetic energy also grants him incredible superhuman physical attributes (strength, speed, reflexes and reactions, agility, flexibility, dexterity, coordination, balance, and endurance), as his body constantly generates bio-kinetic energy and so is perfectly constructed for constant motion. This gives him an added edge that he has used to his advantage by developing a unique acrobatic fighting style. So, in that case, he seems to be competitive again, because he can probably match their strength and endurance after he throws the two cards, so long as he keeps his powers “on.”
Huh. I didn’t know that.
Now, Cap can just ignore their lasers and their punches, being nigh invulnerable. So even if Remy is more competitive than I gave him credit for, she’s making the right call here. Even a flick of her finger, with her Silver Age Alien American Strength, will lay out one of those guys, as well. She’s just in a way higher class than Gambit.
That’s all of the stuff that was in my head as I drew this. It has been an odd week.
After the Homecoming Game/Dance (I might not stay for the dance) I have a long weekend, due to Rosh Hashanah. I cannot say that I am complaining about that in the least. Whether I due an Eldraine event or not, at least there is a day of rest in there. Sort of.