One of Marvel’s merry mutants just got a new costume to match her newly-rediscovered powers.
SPOILERS for X-Men Gold #21 follow.
Rachel Summers has been going through some changes since the very first issue of X-Men Gold. After years of carrying one of her mother’s old codenames, either Marvel Girl or Phoenix, Rachel finally came up with a persona of her own, Prestige. She introduced a new costume to match. and also finally entered into a relationship with Nightcrawler after years of flirtation between the two of them dating back to their days on the original Excalibur team.
But more changes followed. Rachel has been called to on to dig deep and tap into the full depth of her psychic powers in a way she had nearly forgotten she could. The first was when she used her powers to defeat a new breed of Sentinel. The second was in defending the Xavier School against an attack by forces from the Negative Zone.
The attack from the Negative Zone left Rachel in a coma. While unconscious, Rachel’s Hound marks returned. These are the face tattoos that were used to brand her as a mutant hunter working for the oppressive government in the "Days of Future Past" future timeline, Earth-811, she originally came from. Their return is a manifestation of Rachel’s fears that if she uses too much of her psychic powers she will lose control and become a Hound again.
Rachel worked through some of her fears within her own psyche while in the coma. She came to the realization that the power she wields is hers and no one else’s and so decided to lean into those powers and reclaim her history as a Hound. She’s still Prestige, but she’s now awake, more powerful than ever, with Hound marks intact, and a brand new costume to match:
Rachel kept the color scheme from the first Prestige costume but dropped the cape. Instead, she added some arm and shoulder spikes, another callback to her Hound days meant to match the facial markings and again exhibit her control over her abilities.
After Prestige shows the new costume to Nightcrawler and Kitty Pryde, Kitty leaves Kurt and Rachel to deal with their “couples stuff.” Nightcrawler tells Prestige that he’s worried about her, but Rachel assures him that things are better than ever and that she’s “never felt so alive.
That may change soon. By the end of the issue, the X-Men have lost a battle to the new Brotherhood of Mutants and are at the mercy of Mesmero. The story continues in X-Men Gold #22.
X-Men Gold #21 is on sale now. You can read our thoughts on the issue in this week's comic book review roundup.