Marvel Comics just made a big change to the way Rogue's mutant powers work.
SPOILERS for Mr. and Mrs. X #5 by Kelly Thompson, Oscar Bazaldua, and Frank D'Armata follow.
Since her first appearance in Avengers Annual #10 in 1981, Rogue's mutant gift has also been her curse. She can absorb the memories, strength, and powers of anyone she touches, but that ability doesn't come with an off switch. There have been relatively brief periods of Anna Marie's career when she managed to exhibit some control over her powers, but more recently her powers returned to their original form.
Rogue also recently got married to longtime love Gambit. Remy decided the best way to get away from their hectic lives as X-Men would be to borrow an Alpha Flight spacecraft and head into outer space for a honeymoon.
It was a good idea on paper. Unfortunately for them, Kitty Pryde still knew how to get into contact with them. That meant that when an interstellar incident arose, Rogue and Gambit were the closest to the scene and got the call.
The mission involved located and protecting a mysterious egg. That egg turned out to be the daughter of Professor X and the late, former Shi'ar Majestrix Lilandra. That lineage gives the child, who took the name Xandra, incredible psychic abilities, but also makes her a valuable pawn in the political intrigue of the Shi'ar Empire.
With some help from Cerise, the Starjammers, and an unexpected visit from Deadpool, Rogue and Gambit were able to stay one step ahead of the Shi'ar Imperial Guard and Deathbird's rebel forces...until they weren't. The Imperial Guard and Deathbird's forces all converged on Rogue, Gambit, Cerise, and Xandra at once.
At the end of the previous issue, it appeared that Rogue and Xandra has been killed. This sudden traumatic moment was enough to convince the Imperial Guard and Deathbird's group to move on. Once they were clear, Rogue and Xandra reappeared.
Rogue and Xandra explained that they combined their powers in order to fake to deaths and throw their pursuers off of their sent. Gambit is furious that Rogue didn't tell him about the plan, but their argument is cut short when Gambit starts to grow weak. Suddenly Rogue feels something too. Her face changes to resemble a combination of Gambit and the two Shi'ar nearby, Cerise and Xandra. Their memories and powers flow into her until Gambit hands Rogue the power-dampening color they had brought with them for the honeymoon and she clasps it to her neck.
It seems Rogue's powers no longer require her to touch another person. Rogue is traumatized by the experience, having taken in three people's minds and memories at once. Gambit comforts her and takes this moment to reassert his commitment to their marriage. He offers her the new wedding bands he had made, and they make up.
Before heading back to Earth, Rogue has one last conversation with Xandra. Xandra isn't sure what went wrong with Rogue's powers but offers Anna some hope. Xandra doesn't believe that Rogue's powers are broken, but that they evolved. Now all Rogue has to do is learn to control them.2comments
What do you think of this change to Rogue's powers? Let us know in the comments!
Mr. and Mrs. X #5 is on sale now.