Tuesday’s Tragedy – Scott Summers must give up his son


Tuesday’s Tragic Moment in Comics is the sacrifice of his son, by Scott Summers; Cyclops of the X-men in X-Factor #68.

Shortly after the Phoenix Saga that resulted in the death of Jean Grey, Scott Summers falls into a deep depression and quits the X-Men. He travels and eventually meets a woman who looks exactly like Jean, Madelyne Pryor. They fall in love with one another even though everyone else could see that Madelyne was nothing more than a substitute for Jean. They start a family together and Madelyne gives birth to a son who they name Nathan.

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It is shortly after Nathan’s birth that it is revealed that Jean Grey was never the Phoenix and that the real Jean Grey lay submerged in a cocoon beneath Jamaica Bay. When he learns of Jean’s resurrection, Scott rushes to her side, leaving his wife and child behind. Along with Jean, he joins the group known as the X-Factor which comprises many of the original X-Men. He becomes, for lack of a better term, a deadbeat dad. Scott abandons his wife and son to go and live with another woman. Madelyne falls into despair and the demons S’ym and N’astirh take advantage of her state and turn her into the Goblin Queen. She also learns that she is in fact a clone of Jean Grey created by Mr. Sinister for the sole purpose of breeding with Scott. Madelyne falls into a deeper despair and kills herself. Scott, feeling sorrow for what he has done to his wife, reclaims his son.

But the dream of a family with Jean is short-lived as they next encounter the Mutant; Apocalypse. During the battle, Apocalypse infects the child Nathan with a techno-organic virus. Though they defeat Apocalypse, they cannot save Nathan from the fatal disease. Askani opens a time portal and gives Scott the only solution to saving his son. She must transport the child into the future where he can survive.

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To save his son Nathan, Scott must give him up forever. This was one of the more devastating moments in the life of Scott Summers and a moment it could be argued, no matter what came in the future, he never truly recovers from.

But comics being what they are, Scott and Nathan are reunited once again. Nathan comes back to Scott’s life as the time traveling warrior known as Cable. It is not always a happy reunion. One of the reasons is that when Nathan returns to the past he is much older and Scott must deal with the fact that his son is old enough to be his father.


Jean and Scott finally do get married and during their honeymoon, they are transported to the future at the request of Rachel Summers the Askani of the future. Their bodies are left behind and only their minds travel to the future where they take over two different bodies. Apocalypse is threatening the baby Nathan and Rachel has pulled Scott and Jean into the future to protect him. They spend twelve years in this future and raise Nathan, the child never knowing who they truly were.


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