Jubilee, short for Jubilation Lee, is one of my favorite characters in the X-Men series. I love her attitude and spunk…I will also admit to wanting her yellow trench. An orphaned mallrat from LA, she is a mutant who can shoot pyrotechnic like blasts from her hands. Often depicted as Wolverine’s sidekick, her roles have changed many times throughout the different Marvel storyverses from her part in the animated series, deleted scenes in the movies, spinoff titles like Generation X, and in 2004 her very own comic book series.
Jubilee is a collection of the six issues of the short lived comic that Marvel published in 2004. The story begins with Jubilee arriving in her new home — or rather her old home — LA. She has been contacted by her aunt, Hope Lee, an aunt she never knew about. Very little is mentioned in regards to what happened back in NY or why she left Xavier’s School other than she just needed to get away. After settling in at her aunt’s, Jubilee sets forward on her newest mission: normalcy.
Jubilee has been enrolled in Payton-Noble High where she makes friends with the resident outcast, Meg, and forms a crush on the school hottie, Dale. In fact, the worst part of the graphic novel revolves mostly over Jubilee’s crush on Dale and the incident with Dale’s girlfriend, Missy, which causes Jubilee to reveal her mutant abilities. The principal, who is definitely no sage Professor X, wants to kick Jubilee out of school for being a dangerous mutant time-bomb. However, the guidance counselor prevents Jubilee being kicked out of school by suggesting Jubilee become a peer counselor instead.
There is very little action in the series. This is of course high school, not a battle with Apocalypse or Magneto, so it is rather tame compared to her usual adventures. It is obvious that Marvel was attempting to cater to the female readership by introducing Jubilee as the main character in her own series. It was shortly after this publication that they also produced Mary Jane loves Spiderman. While Mary Jane was a successful spinoff, Jubilee was not. It was cancelled after only six issues.
At times the art makes up for what the storyline lacks. Sadly, the yellow trench is ditched after the opening scenes with the comment that she only wore it cause it wouldn’t fit in her suitcase. Jubilee’s aunt has a secret as to why it has taken her so long to contact Jubilee and the visual clues allude to what this secret could be. There were different artists for the six issues. My favorite character depictions are from issue three with Michael O’Hare as the penciller and Mostafa Moussa as the inker and then again in issue six when Casey Jones took over took over as both the penciller and the inker. Jones also did the cover art which is great. I was not a big fan of the way Jubilee was drawn in the other issues, though Aunt Hope looked awesome.
While lacking from a fan’s standpoint, the story isn’t that bad. As a stand alone it works because the reader is not left feeling like the ending is incomplete. It also has enough romance to appeal to teenage female readers while still being tame enough for a young teen audience. I would still like to see it revived one day… maybe as an alternate universe Jubilee…with Marjorie Liu as the writer…and Wolverine…yes, definitely with Wolverine.
by Robert Kirkman
Art by Derec Donovan, Michael O’Hare, Casey Jones
Publisher Age Rating: All Ages