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rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks FAQ: 1/8

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Top Document: rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks FAQ: 1/8
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Abbreviations for discussing the various titles are hardly standardized, 
but if you need some the following are all serviceable and properly 
behaved, well-suited to be inserted into any needful post:

              AF  = Alpha Flight
           Excal  = Excalibur
            GenX  = Generation X
              NM  = New Mutants
Ultimate / UltXM  = Ultimate X-Men
   Uncanny / UXM  = Uncanny X-Men
            XFac  = X-Factor
            XFor  = X-Force
     Unlim / XMU  = X-Men Unlimited 
  X-Men / New XM  = (New) X-Men
   X-Treme / XXM  = X-Treme X-Men

In general, the main confusion comes between Uncanny X-Men and X-Men.  
Uncanny was originally called X-Men, then changed its title.  Up until a 
few years ago, Uncanny was just called "X-Men," there being no actual 
title called "X-Men" to confuse it with. To make things even more fun, 
X-Men was renamed New X-Men when X-Treme X-Men debuted. If you're 
talking about Uncanny, use "Uncanny" or "UXM" consistently and clearly 
in your post. Similarly, call New X-Men just "NXM," and call X-Treme 
X-Men "X-Treme." You'll get used to it as you go along.

Another thing to remember is that xbooks is a newsgroup, while the X-
books are the comics. To help prevent confusion, this FAQ recommends 
calling the comics X-titles, and calling the newsgroup racmx (pronounced 

The Net is a place of lazy typists. Here, then, is a glossary of some 
terms commonly used around the 'Net, as well as some more specific to 

   * FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions. You're reading one. We hope you're
     enjoying it.

   * 616: This is an identifier from Alan Davis' stint on Excalibur. 
     Roma, in her role as the omniversal guardian, and the people 
     working under her adopted a numbering system for the multiple 
     parallel Earths that exist throughout crosstime. The mainstream 
     Marvel Universe and its associated continuity are numbered "616": 
     Earth 616, Captain Britain 616, and so forth. Often used when 
     comparing the mainstream Marvel continuity to that of alternate 

   * AOA: Age of Apocalypse, Marvel's 1996 alternate-reality crossover 
     for the X-titles. You will sometimes see references to the AOA 
     versions of characters as AOA-Rogue or AOA-Jean.

   * canon: A term taken from the humanities, meaning the approved 
     sources (or of them). The newsgroup considers only the comics and 
     the OHOTMUDE canon; other things like letters pages and Wizard 
     articles are considered enlightening but not Truth. Collectible 
     card games are considered extremely unreliable. Your milage may 
     vary, but that is racmx custom.

   * Counter-X: A radical retooling of the titles X-Man, Generation X, 
     and X-Force that only lasted one year. Only X-Force survived, and
     it was radically retooled a year later.

   * dino: First used, puportedly, by the irascible Mike Ellis, "dino" 
     is a term that he supposedly borrowed from the mudding environment 
     of the Internet. It is now used as an identifier for X-readers who 
     feel more at home with X-titles the less grim, gritty, and pocket-
     stuffed the costumes are.

   * fanboy: One who must insanely consume all possible crossovers and
     tie-ins to their dedicated icon, and who cannot accept that any 
     other comic company could be putting out characters as totally 
     cosmic as the ones they collect.

   * DOFP or DOF*: Days of Future Past, and its related storylines Days 
     of Future Present, Days of Future Yet to Come, Days of Future 
     Tense, and Wolverine: Days of Future Past. The first DOFP was the 
     original (UXM #141-142), and it set up the others. DOFPresent was 
     an Annuals crossover, the next two were Excalibur stories, and the 
     last was a Wolverine limited series. All of them deal with a 
     dystopian future where Sentinels rule, and DOFP is where Rachel 
     Summers and the Hounds came from.

   * IMHO: In My Humble (or Honest) Opinion

   * IIRC: If I Recall Correctly

   * LS: limited series, sometimes known as a mini-series.

   * Lurker: An individual who reads the newsgroup, but for some reason 
     chooses not to post.

   * nimbo: A person who is both a ninja and a bimbo. An invaluable term 
     in discussing any book drawn by Jim Lee.

   * OHOTMU: Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe. Once upon a time, 
     the OHOTMU was the penultimate source of Marvel trivia, history,
     characters, and backgrounds. Unfortunately, its recent incarnation
     skipped out on all the background stuff and just gave us fighting
     stats, which sorely annoyed the old OHOTMU fans. The OHOTMU was the
     Official Marvel guidebook on what characters could do what and why, 
     and is usually invoked as a reference to settle various arguments. 
     Very few long-time Marvel readers will accept the newest version of 
     the OHOTMU as more definitive than the older two, however. The 
     older one is also known as the OHOTMUDE (for Deluxe Edition).

   * PAD: Peter A. David, writer of stuff, who was once the writer on
     X-Factor (#70-#89). An infrequent poster on rac.misc, he no longer
     hangs out on racmx.

   * rac: rec.arts.comics, now broken into many smaller groups, 
     including rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks. Sometimes done as r.a.c. 
     "rac" is sometime used as an abbreviation of the term "rec.arts. 
     comics" in any instance; like "rac.marvel.xbooks". Often used the 
     same way as "rac.*", below. Newsgroups abbreviations are often 
     capitalized or not depending on the whim of the typist; "RAC" = 
     "rac" = "R.A.C.", for instance.

   * rac.*: Used as a general abbreviation meaning "all of the 
     rec.arts.comics.* newsgroups".

   * racmu: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe, where Spiderman, FF, New
     Warriors etc. belong.

   * racmx: rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks.

   * racx: Abbreviation of rec.arts.comics.xbooks, the original 
     incarnation of racmx.

   * rac'ers: Netters who frequent any of the rac. groups.

   * retcon: Short for "retroactive continuity." For the full story on
     retcon, see the full rac.* FAQ, posted montly on A retcon 
     is the act of a writer "squeezing" something into past storylines 
     when no evidence of it at all existed when those storylines were 

     The best example of this in the X-titles is Cable. When Liefeld and
     Simonson created Cable, he had never been seen, mentioned, or
     listed in any Marvel comic before. Suddenly, he appeared, and every 
     mutant character who had been around forever was saying, "Ah, 
     Cable, haven't seen you around for a while." Well, duh, he hadn't 
     been invented yet. This mass infusion of history which had never 
     existed before is a classic retcon. racmx'ers also sometimes call 
     Jean Grey's "resurrection" in place of being Phoenix a retcon.

     While "retcon" is usually used in a derisive, insulting sense, this 
     is more due to the fact that most retcons are the tools of 
     modestly-skilled writers working under deadline with an improper 
     grounding in continuity and thus end up being badly handled, as 
     opposed to any inherent fault in the idea of the retcon.

   * troll: A newsgroup poster who posts trivial or inflammatory 
     material in order to irritate other posters and, hopefully, trick 
     them into making foolish spectacles of themselves. Avoid responding 
     to obvious trolls at all costs, no matter how tempting a target 
     they make themselves.

   * xbooks: A common abbreviation of rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks. To 
     keep from being confused with the actual comics themselves, 
     racmxers are encouraged to refer to the newsgroup as racmx, and 
     the comics as the X-titles.

   * X:TAS: A quick abbreviation for X-Men: the Animated Series. Can 
     also be used to set apart XTAS characters from their "normal" comic
     counterparts: Rogue-TAS versus Rogue, for instance.

   * YMMV: Your Mileage May Vary.

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Top Document: rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks FAQ: 1/8

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