The magazine was sour like a tomb

Ryhmä-X 3/1984 Cover
Ryhmä-X 3/1984 Cover

Ryhmä-X 3/1984 didn’t impress me as much as the previous issues.

The Plot

The stories in the magazine had small bits and pieces of the previous story and hints of things to come, but the new adventure didn’t quite pick up yet. First the X-Men were forced to make a stop at Canada where they had to fight off Alpha Flight, who were trying to get Wolverine back (he was slated to become a member of the Alpha Flight). It seems this was the first time X-Men and the Alpha Flight met. From Mail Man (editor for the Finnish magazine, also answers reader mail questions) I gathered this was probably the first assigment ever for the Alpha Flight – or the complete Alpha Flight, since the leader of the group called James Hudson/”Vartija” (Guardian) had apparently fought X-Men or at least Wolverine before. In the end Wolverine decides to surrender to the Alpha Flight to avoid his friends getting hurt, but escapes off-screen, joining the rest of the X-Men on their flight back home.

In the last story we find out both Lilandra and Xavier preparing for her coronation. Jean Grey meets a mysterious rather fine looking man called Jason Wyngarde and is instantly drawn to him. This is, of course, the beginning of the story which leads to the birth of Dark Phoenix. Meanwhile Scott/Cyclops is getting all the more friendly and beyond with Colleen Wing, whom he met in Ryhmä-X 2/1984. So not only could have he not cared about Jean’s presumed death, he already has picked himself a new dame to go out with. Men… >:( I hope there will be an explanation for all this even though I must say I never liked him.

The last image or Ryhmä-X 3/1984: Arcade
No, not this! Please, not a Murderworld story!

And the last thing, the magazine ends with a horrible image: “Armoton” (Arcade, the Finnish name means literally “merciless”). That can only mean one thing: Murderworld. I hate it. I think the Murderorld stories are crap (Trust me, I’m so going to dwell on this subject on my next post.) and so it was also in that one level in Marvel Ultimate Alliance. Ungh! <:(

(edit: originally published in X-Men 120-122)

Marvel teaches a thing or two about Egyptology, too!

I study Egyptology at the University of Helsinki. Since I was a child I have always been very interested in ancient Egypt and that means that wherever I see a reference to ancient Egypt, I always take notice and make that the most important aspect of whatever the reference was.

Well, I would have never thought running into ancient Egypt reading Marvel magazines. Wait, that’s not true. I think Mister Sinister had something to do with ancient Egypt or at least the pyramids. Well, whatever. Let’s say I wasn’t expecting it when it happened. Scott and Colleen are sitting at some cafe or maybe a railwaystation, sharing a table, drinking coffee. Scott asks: “Colleen, olenko minä hapan?” / “Colleen, am I sour?” (I have no idea of the original text, this is a literal translation from Finnish) and Colleen answers: “Kuin kuningas Tutin hauta.” / “Like king Tut’s tomb.”

Sour like king Tut's tomb?
1) "Colleen, am I sour?" 2) "Like Kind Tut's tomb."

Sour?

Well, I have never had a taste of Tutankhamon‘s tomb, but I doubt it’s sour. Having eaten Egyptian bread with some sand in it, I’d say the tomb tastes most likely of sand, i.e. ground, and as I remember it from my childhood trying to eat those sandcakes sand doesn’t taste sour.

What might have been the original word they had used instead of sour? When I think of Tutankhamon’s tomb I think it’s dry. Could Scott have asked, if he’s a dry person to hang around and Colleen did her best to comply and insult him in the progress? Not very likely. And anyway, they could have just used the Finnish word “kuiva” for dry.

I also thought of another explanation. Maybe they were not talking about Tutankhamon at all but “tutti” (pacifier in Finnish -> genetive case: “tutin”). Maybe a sour king of pacifiers could be thrown away and buried in a tomb or grave (both good translations for “hauta”). But who would ever think of such a scenario when their man is asking them if he is sour? What a weird metaphor. Explanations, anyone? :-/

5 thoughts on “The magazine was sour like a tomb”

    1. The possible definitions for “stuffy”
      -Lacking sufficient ventilation; close.
      -Dull and boring: a stuffy lecture.
      -Rigidly adhering to standards of conduct; strait-laced
      -ill-natured, ill-humored
      -lacking in vitality or interest : stodgy, dull
      -oppressive to the breathing : close -stuffed up
      -narrowly inflexible in standards of conduct : self-righteous
      -stiffly conventional : priggish

      I think the best translation would be “jäykkä” (= stiff), but that wouldn’t go with the tomb methaphor. Maybe “sulkeutunut” (= withdrawn, literally: closed) could work, because the tomb used to be sealed and now it isn’t making Colleen’s answer somewhat playfull.

      And, Mikki, thanks. :)

  1. From a localization point of view, the important thing here really isn’t how you translate “stuffy,” but what you replace “King Tut’s tomb” with.

    1. No, but you can’t replace King Tut’s tomb. That’s the single most important thing in the whole magazine! :O

      ;) Egyptologists…

  2. When I have time, I’ll check from the original issue how those “Am I sour?” and “Like king Tut’s tomb” phrases go. They started to interest me. :) Thanks for this entertaining article besides all others.

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