With the release of Logan just days away, Wolverine Week comes to an end with a look at X-23. The character will be making her screen debut, played by Dafne Keen. Before the movie comes out I feel it’s important for people to understand who she is and what makes her different to Wolverine.
X-23 is the clone of Wolverine, and was created by the Weapon X Project in an attempt to make a controllable weapon. The child was raised in captivity and underwent brutal training to turn her into an assassin. She was conditioned with a trigger scent to become an unstoppable killer. When her claws manifested, they were bonded with adamantium and two of them was transferred to her feet.
X-23 was brought into the world by Dr Sarah Kinney. When she saw what was done to the child she smuggled X-23 out of the facility. However, Kinney was killed by her ‘daughter’ when X-23 succumbed to the trigger scent. With her dying breath, Sara named her Laura.
Laura ended up on the streets as a mute teenage prostitute. When she killed her pimp for harming one of her friends, she left claw marks that incriminated Wolverine. He investigated and the two of them fought each other. Eventually, Laura joined the X-Men, though she found it difficult to connect with anyone. She had to learn to speak properly and move beyond her conditioning.
She became a part of X-Force, where she could channel her killer insticts into stopping threats against mutants. Laura grew tired of all the death and joined The Avengers Academy, where she and her new friends were kidnapped and forced to fight to the death.
When Wolverine died in the comics, Laura took up his mantle. She now appears in All New Wolverine and has recieved a lot of character development. She guest stars regularly in other comics and has been able to move forward from her past.
What makes X-23 different from Wolverine is that she is more precise and calculating. Her fighting style is emphasied by strikes from her foot claws, while Logan is more of a brawler. Their relationship can be described as father and daughter, with him wanting her to be better than what she was made to be.
My favourite X-23 comic series is Marjorie Liu’s take on her. This is the period of time when Laura learns how to connect with the people around her. She goes on a solo journey of discovery and Gambit joins her as a moral guide.
X-23 is an interesting character that has been able to develop beyond her connection with Wolverine. Daphne Keen has already recieved rave reviews for her portrayal, so I can’t wait to see the film.
Look out for my review of Logan in the coming days.