“Polaris/Lorna Dane is a hard sell”

This was going to be about Polaris tweets, but the first tweet I had to highlight generated so much text from me that I’m making it its own post.

image

I need to talk about this because Gail thinking Lorna would be a hard sell underscores heavy bias against Lorna at @marvelentertainment​.

To repeat: I said bias from Marvel, not bias from Gail Simone. What she said here says nothing about her views on Lorna. Do not “go after” or complain about her for providing insight into what she has to take into account when working with a company as biased as Marvel.

Now to the meat of my post.

Lorna is a character who has never received even one solo, miniseries, one-shot or dedicated origins book. This is while so many other characters – including ones only the most hardcore of hardcore readers have ever heard of – have received solos.

Blink got her own solo series. Firestar got not one, but two solo volumes. Strong Guy. Layla Miller. Shatterstar. Longshot long before Deadpool 2. Chamber, a character I literally never heard of until I put together one of these lists, had his own 4-issue miniseries in 2002.

Marvel’s able to make solos and one-shots for all of these characters, but not for Polaris? Somehow, giving Lorna a single series is a hard sell at Marvel?

It’s even worse when you consider the full context. The live-action version of Lorna is the most popular character on Gifted. This year is the 50th anniversary of her creation. She’s the second female X-Men member. If you check social media, you see tons and tons more people requesting or demanding that Lorna get to lead a team, or get to have a solo book, or so many other things.

Polaris is not only at the height of her popularity, she’s not only jumped over every hurdle these other characters that got series had to jump, she’s exceeded the qualifications.

If Lorna isn’t able to get a solo under these conditions, conditions that no other character that got a solo had to have to get theirs, then what the hell is it going to take? Does the idea of her have to end world hunger first? Does the U.S. government have to declare the day of her creation National Polaris Day? Would that be enough for Marvel to give her a solo book?

Or is no amount of popularity or demand in need of supply ever going to be good enough for this company?

It’s tweetin time.

Damnit Lorna, let her know you’re free!

These were both part of favorite character lists.

What I love about the second tweet is the the EM fields portion. That’s Genosha. She’s aware of what Lorna went through in Genosha’s genocide and she’s talking about it. That kind of talking about it is important to that aspect of her history eventually getting acknowledged and used in the future.

Also, the plane. This tweet is showing how much the plane is becoming a facet of her character people recognize and associate with her.

Two tweets demonstrating even further how Brand was drawn and presented in a way that is entirely what you would expect for Lorna and not Brand at all.

People mistaking her for Lorna isn’t just some Lorna fans imagining things. When you have this much misunderstanding, it’s the source that’s the cause. The way she was drawn and what was drawn around her.

This continues the trend of people associating green hair with Lorna, and wanting to dye their hair to hers.

PolarisVanSamus remains cool as ever and we continue to follow each other and tweet to each other.

In this case, I’m using her tweet to highlight how meaningful Lorna is to her fans. When fans get tattoos of Lorna and choose her codename as their name for things like bowling, it’s cause those fans love the character and everything she has to offer.

I found this one interesting as she’s included alongside lots of well-known female characters, but also cause Lorna’s talked about as having a huge role in Marvel storylines.

I’d have to argue Marvel hasn’t treated her as such since about 2006/2007. But that’s a different matter from the perception of her. And here, I could say she’s perceived as having more worth than Marvel actually permits.

It’s kinda like when you go back and watch old TV shows on DVD/Blu-Ray/streaming, when your original experience of them was one new episode per week. You find story arcs that you felt lasted forever, in reality only lasted for about two or three episodes.

I show these cause they show how much people love good moments for Lorna when Marvel really gives her a chance, however fleeting and abbreviated those chances may be.

It also demonstrates in its own way that people notice when characters aren’t getting enough focus. Stuff like this only gets said when people have been lacking it and then see they’re now suddenly getting it. 

This was a series of tweets, and my screencap cuts off the whole string. So here’s a link to it.

I love three things specifically of his tweets above all else.

I love that he notes Lorna is the second female X-Men member and how long it took before the next one came along. That’s an extremely important aspect of her character history, and seeing other people who I’ve never talked to tweet about it shows knowledge of that fact is spreading. It’s a very important first step toward Lorna having that history acknowledged.

I love the Lorna is to Magneto what Jean is to Xavier comparison. It’s an excellent point I never realized until reading these tweets, and it gives more of a reason for Lorna and Jean to interact more than they have been (which is just about none since the early days). 

And lastly, I love a new term he used for Lorna – The Original Sixth.

Most people familiar with comics refer to the original X-Men as the O5 or Original Five. Referring to Lorna as the Original Sixth is a great reminder that she came right after. It also evokes some awesome imagery of the Power Rangers and its Green Ranger, complete with gold.

Polaris has a giant metal dragon that will eat you, is what I’m saying. This is canon. You can’t tell me it’s not, because Marvel doesn’t write her enough to refute it. Lorna has a dragon, deal with it nerds.

Tweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeets.

You’re getting more this time if you read this post.

By the way, here’s what I use as search terms when I look for these tweets.

  • polaris x-men
  • polaris marvel
  • lorna x-men
  • lorna marvel
  • lorna dane

On rare occasions, I’ll go outside them, but these are my regular search terms.

image

Just another case of Lorna included among characters as a fave.

image

Damn right she does!

image

This is the ever-cool @dipolarismoment on Twitter again! And I agree, it’d be cool for Lorna to get her PhD.

At the same time, it reminds me of a discussion I had on Twitter (you’ll notice I usually don’t include my own tweets/replies on these lists). Someone was complaining about Carol Danvers’ power grid card putting her intelligence too low. I pointed out the power grids seem to be bullshit more often than not.

If you look at the Marvel wikia for example. Polaris and Havok both have the exact same Master’s degree, yet somehow, Lorna is just “Normal” (2) intelligence while Havok gets to be “Learned” (3). Then if you look at Jean Grey, she’s ALSO “Learned” (3) even though she’s only college-level education.

In other words, power grids are just yet another place where whoever makes them and oversees them can pretend their bias toward characters (for or against) is more objective than it actually is. “Look at this concrete number, you have to write her as being only that smart, no smarter.”

image

I happen to like the idea of Lorna being bi.

Aside from me just simply liking it, the only partner she’s ever been allowed to have in 50 years is Havok, and her interactions with men have been tainted by that history (too much of ANXF #4-6 was pretty clearly treating Gambit like another Havok in her life). Same as how I think Lorna would be best off with a female writer, I think being in relationship with another woman might result in writers writing her better in relationship. They might stop thinking of how “masculine” (read: dominant) her partner has to look around her and try to write her as an actual character in her own right.

image

Awwwww yeah.

image

I never thought about this before, but I’ve decided that it explains why I have this song on my smartphone. I mostly listen to songs with female singers (nothing against male ones, I just like them more; may have been a result of coming of age in the time of Lilith Fair), so songs with male singers is rare for me to have on my phone.

image
image

Two more tweets about how Lorna should get a solo, and seriously, it really is time. Moreso than literally any other time in her entire character history, and moreso than a lot of other characters that have been given solo books just because someone at Marvel likes the character regardless of interest anyone has in reading them.

Not only is she more popular than ever and prominent on TV, again, it’s her 50th anniversary in October. Literally everything has aligned for this to be the time Marvel should give her a solo.

Considering they gave Scarlet Witch a solo and heavily promoted it despite low sales, and they both let Havok hijack her big return on X-Men Blue and are giving HIM team book he leads, I’m going to see the lack of a solo and nothing major for Lorna for her anniversary by October as Marvel continuing to show bias against her. She’s gone most of her existence undervalued and ignored. She deserves something for her 50th.

image
image
image

I continue to see this sort of request. It’s interesting how much people want Lorna and Wanda to interact – moreso Lorna coming to MCU than the other direction. I think the perception is “Lorna is a great character, she should be alongside these other great characters in a cinematic universe compared to others I could mention.”

image

This makes me think of how some fans go with Lorna Maximoff, which is a pretty neat name change. I don’t know how I’d feel about if that became canon somehow, but it’s interesting as fanon.

image

Now here’s something worth talking a bit about.

Their relationships are all complicated because Lorna only finally got Magneto being her father restored in the past decade, but she was the first actual intended child before her forced retcon and before Wanda and Pietro were revealed as Magneto’s kids (and not forced retcon to not be).

As such, it’s only in the past decade that Lorna and Pietro both using green has been an issue.

Also interesting, one version of coloring for Wanda’s first appearance gave her a green costume as well. So basically Wanda and Pietro really really wanted to be Lorna even before she existed. 😛

There’s also one panel out there from the time she was on Genosha (I think an AU; been a while since I saw it) where she was wearing Wanda’s old costume in green. They loev stealing each others’ clothes and colors.

Seriously though, one final possible reason behind giving Pietro a green costume is to try to make it harder to undo their forced retcon and for fans and readers to see them all visually as siblings. It’s the same reason Enchantress was made to look like Polaris for an Axis cover, and why they tried to introduce a new “sister” called “Luminous” with blue color scheme post-Axis. They know the color coordination matters and they’re trying to undermine it cause they don’t like all of them together as a family and don’t want fans to see them that way.

image

I like that Lorna is specifically cited as a possible skin. And frankly, if she was, I’d actually be interested in trying out Fortnite. Right now I don’t really care. I’m in the middle of Far Cry 5 and I have a long backlog of other games to play, on top of others I still need to buy.

image

Last one. I see tweets fairly often of people responding to green hair by saying the person looks like Lorna. To me, that says a lot about how iconic Lorna’s become and becoming, especially with the green hair. They could’ve said she looks like Rydia (FF4), or Aphrodite IX, or Agent Brand, etc, but they went with Lorna.

Thanks for joining me for another list of tweets! See you next time, same Polaris Time, same Polaris Channel!

Time for more tweets.

More demand for Polaris in Future Fight, alongside other “more popular” characters. At some point I’ll probably stop posting these tweets cause they’re becoming so common. For now I’m including them.

Pretty cool idea of Lorna having a kid with Iron Man. I also think it shows that perception of her as being “on the same level” as characters like him is rising.

Just including for the Marvel Queens remark.

I find this “lowkey Lorna Dane” part very interesting. RWBY was created in 2013 and became pretty popular in a couple years, yet we see Lorna used as a descriptor in the same way as someone might say things like “this character is sort of like this world’s Superman.”

The person could’ve said “lowkey female magneto” but they didn’t. They said Lorna.

I’ve always been a strong proponent of giving this Polaris codename more value and purpose.

I think there wasn’t any real reason for giving it to her when Claremont did it, same as his reasons for having her possessed by Malice, by ripping her powers away to give her a terrible secondary mutation, etc. BUT, like many things, I think it can be salvaged. Something more can be made of it.

Polaris is a pole star and the guiding north star. It’s among the brightest in the sky. A simple way to make something more of the name is to say it represents Lorna as someone who can guide mutants into a brighter future.

Lorna and Wanda together continues to be highly valued. Tweets technically acknowledge Marvel’s forced retcon (”were sisters”), but the word choice basically says that what Marvel did was wrong. He could’ve said “because they thought they were sisters,” but he didn’t.

Last I’ve got.

There’s quite a few tweets and posts out there that have said similar things, but I like this set above the others because they emphasize that Lorna as a team leader in general is great and should keep going. I feel the others I saw put more focus on the book or writer than Lorna herself.

It’s that time again! Polaris tweet time.

Marvel apparently has a 10 year sweepstakes going on for the MCU. I don’t know the details, but I know Elena used it to say how she’d love to play the role of Lorna in the MCU.

Elena and I ended up following each other after I liked and retweeted this tweet, but the screencap is from a tab I had open before that.

These tweets are about the X-Men Blue roster, if it’s not obvious.

I’m personally indifferent to the roster itself, but Brett’s comments do lead to a pretty damn good point: why does Lorna’s Blue team have exclusively “lower tier” characters while X-Men Red has Nightcrawler, Gambit and X-23, and Havok’s team gets characters like Dazzler and Colossus?

Whenever I’ve talked about ideal team composition, it’s always been mix of “popular” characters and “obscure” characters. The value being such a mix is that “popular” characters get wild cards for new relationships, while “obscure” characters get more use and get to connect with the “popular” ones. Marvel made Lorna’s Blue team entirely “obscure” characters. Lorna’s the closest to being a “popular” character only because she has a popular live action version on Gifted.

So the question remains. Why give Polaris a pack of unknowns and AU versions of “popular” characters while giving Gold, Red and Havok’s team full-fledged popular characters in their mix?

I’m going with bias as the reason.

On the flipside of what I just said, Hilton points out with Lorna leading Blue how she’s always been underrated by Marvel and deserves more and better than she’s been getting from them.

I needed to put these together, really.

People still hold the whole Magnus family as being the Magnus family despite Marvel’s forced retcon on the twins.

First set of tweets acknowledge what Marvel tries to get people to accept, yet if you pay close attention, you’ll see that they shows how wrong Marvel is. Even in acknowledging what Marvel claims, the family is too great to deny that they should be together.

Second set of tweets simply shows that people still want to see Lorna and Wanda do stuff together on the screen.

Last tweet I have to share for now. Contrary to what Marvel thinks of Lorna, people see X-Men #49 and #50 as a big deal for having introduced her. People don’t see them as “just random issues” from the early years. They see #49 and #50 as something to hold up with pride and announce that they got, specifically because it’s when Lorna got her start.

It’s especially poignant to remember this as we get closer to her 50th in October.

I’ve been lazy about the next set of Polaris tweets. Here they are.

A lot of people out there operate under the presumption that interest in Lorna is just a subset of interest in male characters “above” her in their eyes, like Havok or Magneto.

This tweet is a good example that not only does Lorna generate interest independent of Magneto, but beyond him in some cases. It shows that perceiving Lorna as existing exclusively within the shadow of “better men” is a mistake.

This is a pretty stilted poll, in all fairness. Lorna doesn’t really have much in the way of competition.

… And yet it says a hell of a lot about Lorna’s viability and interest in her compared to how little value @marvelentertainment thinks she has.

Votes for her are more than double Daken. Despite the fact Marvel gave Daken his own dedicated 23-issue series called Daken: Dark Wolverine back in 2011, and has never done anything even remotely close to that for Lorna.

Marvel needs to give Polaris a solo book. That is what I’m saying between the lines.

Another tweet about how Lorna should be in Future Fight.

I don’t know what video this person’s referring to, but it stuck out for me because it matches the idea I had of infinity stones matching mutant women. Scarlet Witch is obviously the reality stone, Jean Grey would obviously be mind.

Power seemed like the closest match for Polaris given it allows the user to access and manipulate all forms of energy, but Marvel seems to prefer giving that stone to physical bruiser type characters. But then again, as I write this, it would fit with the bullshit “secondary powers” Claremont tried to force on Lorna at one point.

This was part of a list of fictional characters who are Jewish. To me, says a lot to see Lorna appear on these lists so often. Shows the value of her representation in that sense even with Marvel not making any real use of her.

I got two things to say about this.

First, a Minimates of Polaris actually does exist…

… bundled with Havok. So fuck that.

Second, this is yet another of many cases of people seeing Enchantress and thinking she’s Polaris. At this point, I’d argue having Lorna and Enchantress interact some time would be a good idea, but Marvel would probably just screw it up. Having the two interact would require finesse Marvel hasn’t shown any desire to attempt with Lorna.

I see lists of teams for Lorna to be on every so often. This one just stood out to me.

Lastly, Lorna included on a list of favorite women for women’s history month last month. I think it speaks highly of her to not only be thought of during the month, but to be listed alongside other “big name” characters.

So wraps up all I’ve got.

Before I get started, I’ll admit I’ve left out (and will continue leaving out) tweets I personally don’t want to highlight. There’s some Gifted ones, and a few highlighting or talking up X-Men Blue #23, but I don’t really wanna post them. I figure someone else can if they really want.

So, tweets time. Relatively few this time.

A bunch of people asking about Lorna included in Future Fight. It’s highly reminiscent of the Marvel Legends figures, how Marvel disregarded her constantly being on the list of top 10 most wanted figures. One of many things where Lorna’s exclusions serves as a window into their low perception of her.

I know, we’re used to this fun fan imagining here on Tumblr, but it’s nice to see it on Twitter too. ❤

I absolutely agree with this person. Lorna’s generally not been allowed to be a leader, but when she’s been able to be – and in the hands of a writer that cares about her – she pulls it off well.

Although I also feel like I should say a couple things. I believe her mental issues form an important strength to her leadership. She’s had struggles, it’s given her perspective, that leads to empathy and better understanding of where members of her team stand. And, when I say mental issues, I don’t mean only mental breakdowns.

Of course, it would be wrong for that to be the only thing ever focused on. Lorna is a multifaceted character, that Marvel seems to keep holding back with a one-dimensional idea of who she is and what she can do.

That’s all I’ve got this time.

More tweets time. My PC wants me to reboot so I have to do it early.

Pretty cool idea of Lorna wearing that dress, and also says something positive that people are seeing pics like this and thinking of them applying to Lorna.

This was part of a string of tweets where people were basically saying Marvel has no idea at all how to use their own characters, so the fans should just take over. I’m pretty much in agreement given Marvel’s history of poor treatment toward Lorna, and how they’re still not giving her anywhere near the use or respect she should have even with her being on a show.

Also great to see Lorna not only considered during Women’s History Month, but considered alongside “bigger name” characters.

Time for more tweets. I may need to make a second post if this has a limit.

As you see, multiple people pointed out that they were/should be siblings but then Marvel screwed him over. They all say Polaris is their favorite, but keep in mind that I found these searching for Lorna or Polaris in keyword. There may be a lot more responses out there for the other two that don’t mention her.

Two tweets by people wanting or expecting Lorna to star in a book with a green theme. It would be a real, real good idea for Marvel to do it. Which, of course, is why they won’t. Marvel’s spent since 2009 hating on and avoiding good ideas for Lorna.

By the way, I haven’t talked to her very often, but Lori Hyrup’s cool.

I think this is the first time I’ve seen Marvel Champions acknowledge someone asking about Lorna in the game. I think it may be a good sign that they’re urging people to suggest her on the wishlist thread.

I love seeing people suggest dynamics that are rarely or never seen. Somewhat linked to…

The OTP finder is a neat account that randomly suggests pairings. I’ve seen a fair number of them for Lorna with various characters. Bucky’s an interesting one after seeing Lorna with Steve Rogers suggested before too.

This is probably the only time I’ll note the OTP finder in one of these posts.

Genderbend is a pretty cool take I’ve seen for many characters, though I typically only see it in genderbending male characters to female characters, not the other way around. Even seen cases of genderbending Magneto to female rather than using Lorna in things.

This does well in highlighting how bad it was that Marvel put Lorna into forced limbo for two years after Secret Wars.

Various people do these, and they’re cool.

Personal thing: I think a lot of people are being too dismissive of Malice-involved stuff too soon. Last time Malice was actually addressed in any real way was the 90s. Over 20 years ago. My view, people being cautious is fine but saying “oh god stay away” at this stage is just destroying potential great storylines. It’s not like the situation with Havok where bad stuff’s happened constantly for several decades and occurred within the past few years.

Finally…

Obviously there’s no mention of Lorna at all in this tweet. I just really, really liked it and thought of Lorna for it. I thought it was cool and sorta coincidental that as they talk about magnetic landscapes and their affecting space weather, they use the color green to represent it.

Time for me to do that thing where I post Polaris-related tweets again. I’ve now even made a folder dedicated to this.

I see this demand every so often. People really want a Funko of Lorna, which isn’t very unlike all the demand for a Legends figure of her in that Marvel something like a decade and dismissed heavy request for her before finally letting one happen.

Seeing people do the Lorna hair is great, and seeing how they recognize her as part of the broader family is great too.

Fully agree on this, obviously. But not Gifted version Lorna. That version is designed and optimized for a TV show setting, she wouldn’t work in film. Solo film for Lorna would need to be more in line with the comics, absolutely essential that it include Genosha.

I’ve seen more and more fandom view Lorna as gay or bi. Frankly, I can see both. In her entire 50 year existence, she’s only ever been allowed to have any kind of “romantic” relationship with Havok, while Havok’s had multiple women. If romance is gonna be done with her, I don’t think “she dated Havok” really counts considering her being his girlfriend was never about her. It was always about promoting him.

This guy’s a mutual follow, and he’s a cool guy. We talk fairly often about comics. Was happy to see him refer to Lorna as a princess. So many people forget about her Genosha status because Marvel chooses to act like it never happened to her.

Last tweet for now. Says a lot about how far Lorna’s come in public perception as far as Magneto’s daughter that people wonder why she was excluded from X-Men movies given her importance in connection with him. Casual fans don’t know the whole story about the forced retcon that made her not Magneto’s daughter, and how it was sort of fixed in the early/mid 00s and only properly fixed around 2011.