A widely known but little-understood bit of X-Men lore is that Scott “Cyclops” Summers has at least four adult superhero children, from multiple alternate futures. Equally maddening is the fact that future hero Ayla Ranzz of the Legion Of Super-Heroes has at least six heroic aliases, (if you count the one that was her own teenage clone/duplicate.) Even Disney cartoons aren’t immune, as Negaduck (the Tronsplitter-split self of Darkwing Duck) exists separately of Negaduck (the evil Darkwing from a mirror universe), but are nearly identical, leading to today’s convoluted query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) is still leery of Season 2 of Flash using Zoom after Reverse-Flash, asking: What constitutes the most utterly confusing, unnecessary plot development of them all?


About Author

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. Apart from Johnny Storm’s sexual appeal to non-human females, you mean? (You would think the man was James T. Kirk!)

    In all my many varied and much loved pop culture worlds, the “most utterly confusing, unnecessary plot development of them all” was the fact that someone actually believed that Jim Phelps would betray his country and his team!!!!!


  2. Gotta agree with Malone Hasco on Midi-Chlorians. There was a ton of stuff in the prequels that felt unnecessary, but Midi-Chlorians really felt like they were trying too hard. I’m of the school of thought that sometimes less is more, and keeping an air of mystery works better than explaining every last detail. The Force is one of those things that we don’t need an in-depth pseudoscience analysis for. Trying too hard to explain it is right up there with making Greedo shoot first.

    I also want to add just about everything Sci-Fi did with “Sliders” when they took over from FOX. Part of the appeal of the series to me was the whole “visitors in a world not quite like our own” and Quinn inventing the sliding technology on his own. Adding a new origin for Quinn and the sliding technology and the whole cross timeline war broke the series for me.

  3. One More Day is the be all and end all of baffling, unnecessary plot “developments”. Personally, I’m a fan of the marriage, but I could have accepted it if the powers that be wanted to end it. There were plenty of ways that a good writer could have accomplished that, and still made it stay true to the character…But to have Spider-Man, whose entire life has been built on the idea of RESPONSIBILITY, make a deal with Mephisto???? That is the epitome of editorial blunders. Not only did it show a complete and total misunderstanding of the character, but it also mucked with the entire history and continuity of the Spider-Man universe.

    I steadfastly REFUSE to buy any more Spider-Man comics since. I still love the character, but hate what they’ve done to him.

    • I would agree with “One More Day.” Marriages end all the time, choosing to have MJ and Peter break up was fine, but the idea that he would make a deal with Mephisto is terrible. That said, don’t discount everything that came afterwards, because it has been some of the best Spider-man in a long time. It’s actually a really good example of how with the correct writers, you can take something terrible and spin good stories out of it.

      • No…I’m sorry, but NO.

        I’m sure that there have been some decent Spider-Man stories since then, but to me, they’ve all just been “What If ” stories.

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