Callisto (comics)

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Callisto
Callistox.jpg
Callisto and the Morlocks.
Jim Cheung, artist
Publication information
Publisher Marvel Comics
First appearance Uncanny X-Men #169 (May 1983)
Created by Chris Claremont
Paul Smith
In-story information
Species Human Mutant
Team affiliations
Abilities
  • None, formerly:
  • Superhuman senses
  • Heightened strength, speed, agility, and reflexes
  • Accelerated healing factor

Callisto is a Marvel Comics fictional character, associated with the X-Men. She is the leader of New York City's subterranean mutant settlement the Morlocks until losing that post in a duel with Storm. Storm subsequently leaves the group in Callisto's care as her representative, and the two eventually form an uneasy alliance.

Callisto appears in the 2006 film, X-Men: The Last Stand, where she is played by actress Dania Ramirez.

Publication history[edit]

Created by writer Chris Claremont and artist Paul Smith, she first appeared in Uncanny X-Men #169 (May 1983).

Fictional character biography[edit]

Callisto's origins are unknown, although she claims that the scars she bears are proof of "how dumb a mistake" it was for her to try to live among normal humans; in one of her earlier appearances, her greatest psychological fear is the image of the beautiful woman that she once was.

Morlocks[edit]

Callisto takes up residence in an abandoned Cold War-era bomb shelter hidden within the sewers. Under untold circumstances, she meets Caliban, a mutant whose power is to sense the presence of other mutants. She decides to make the bomb shelter a sanctuary for mutants like herself, using Caliban's power to track down such mutants.[1] She calls this newly formed society the Morlocks, after the group of futuristic subterraneans in "the Time Machine" by H.G. Wells.[volume & issue needed] Callisto kidnaps Angel, intending to make him her mate. Kitty Pryde is struck with a deadly illness in an attempt to rescue him, and Callisto refuses to allow her companions to take her to the surface for medical treatment. To rescue Kitty, Storm challenges and beats Callisto in a duel for the leadership of the Morlocks.[2] As the new leader of the Morlocks, Storm decrees that they would no longer kidnap and terrorize surface-dwellers, and in return they would have peace. The confrontation between Callisto and Storm leaves both parties consumed with hatred for each other.[3]

Cover of Uncanny X-Men #170. Art by Paul Smith.

Callisto attempts to take revenge on Storm by manipulating Kitty Pryde into wedding Caliban, but is foiled when Caliban releases Kitty from their betrothal.[4] When the wizard Kulan Gath enslaves and ensorcells the city of New York and transforms it into a Hyborian Age city, Callisto becomes his warrior servant. She battles Storm again, but Storm saves her life. Callisto helps defeat Kulan Gath, and as a result Callisto and her allies find themselves on a new timeline where Kulan Gath never transformed New York.[5]

Thereafter, Callisto becomes more of an ally to the X-Men. She rescues Professor X after he was nearly killed by an anti-mutant mob.[6] She saves Power Pack from the Morlocks Annalee and Masque.[7] Callisto is wounded during the Marauders' massacre of the Morlocks, and takes refuge with the X-Men.[8] She convinces Storm not to give up leadership of the X-Men.[9]

After a while, Callisto moves to Muir Island to become the bodyguard for Moira MacTaggert. With Moira, she is transported to an alternate Earth where Britain is dominated by Nazis.[10] Meanwhile, the Nazi counterparts of Callisto and Moira appear on the mainstream Earth.[11] These counterparts capture Brigadier Alistaire Stuart at the Tower of London,[12] but fail in their attempt to escape the Tower of London.[13] Both Callisto and Moira and their counterparts then return to their native Earths.[14]

Being beautiful[edit]

Callisto later encounters an amnesiac Colossus, who has assumed the identity of artist Peter Nicholas. Peter remembers nothing of his former life after his journey through the Siege Perilous. The two become attracted to each other after Masque, who had taken control of the Morlocks in Callisto's absence, restores Callisto's beauty to greater than it was, only to take it away later as a means of tormenting her.[15] The process is repeated several times before Callisto and Colossus are rescued by Forge, Banshee, and Jean Grey.[16]

Callisto began a career as a fashion model and moved above ground, embarking on a new life with Peter Nicholas as her lover. They were attacked by Genoshan magistrates but defeated them.[17] The Morlocks later attacked Callisto, still under the influence of Masque. Masque had grossly transformed the Morlocks, leaving them with grotesque physical mutations. They nearly beat Callisto to death. The Morlocks' Healer treated her wounds, but accidentally restored Callisto's scars and her original physical deformities. The Healer's powers were overloaded by the severity of her injuries, killing him in the process.[volume & issue needed]

Callisto vowed revenge on her former followers for stealing away her looks, and then allied herself with Mikhail Rasputin, Colossus' older brother. Mikhail and Callisto appeared to have perished when he used his powers over matter to flood the Morlock tunnels. Rasputin had actually transported the Morlocks into an alternate reality, where time moved more quickly than on Earth. There she watched as the Morlock youths grew up with great bitterness towards their elders for all that had happened to them.[volume & issue needed]

When the young Morlocks, now calling themselves Gene Nation, returned to Earth with revenge planned, she went looking for help and located her former love Colossus, who had recently returned to Earth after the fall of Avalon. The two returned to the X-Mansion to warn the X-Men that Gene Nation was planning to kill innocents for every Morlock killed during the Mutant Massacre. Drawing Storm and Wolverine into the tunnels, she witnessed as Storm fought Marrow in a duel that saw the X-Man once more resort to lethal measures to win.[volume & issue needed]

Callisto remained in the tunnels looking over Marrow until she became injured during the events of Operation: Zero Tolerance. Recovering from her wounds, she told Marrow to find a place amongst the X-Men, figuring it to be the best place for her. Callisto also has a maternal relationship with Marrow, acting as a mother-figure towards the young mutant, though the two are not biologically related, making her the only person Marrow would follow nearly blindly.[volume & issue needed] After the six month gap and Marrow's departure from the X-Men, Callisto disappeared.[volume & issue needed]

Later, Callisto was once again transformed by Masque, having her arms reformed into tentacles. Callisto was also under Masque's control in "The Arena," an elite fight club in Japan. Callisto and Storm battled each other in the Arena, but later both escaped with help from Storm's friend, Yukio.[volume & issue needed]

Genoshan Excalibur[edit]

She was one of the main characters in the 2004 Excalibur title, where she was helping Professor Xavier and Magneto rebuild Genosha. Ironically, this alliance briefly (and perhaps uncomfortably) reunited her with Archangel.[18]

Son of M[edit]

In the aftermath of House of M, Callisto is among the many mutants to have lost her powers. Quicksilver offered to her the Terrigen Mists, stolen from the Inhumans, as a way to restore her powers. Callisto willingly accepted the offer and the Mist effectively restored all her previous abilities (minus her disfigurements and arm-tentacles), but without any control over them. Her new senses are so acute that even a drop of rain causes her tremendous pain; unable to handle it, she fell into a coma. The depowered Magneto found her body and showed it to Quicksilver saying that he poisoned her with the Terrigen Mist. He later took her body to a hospital, where the effects of the Mists wore off.[volume & issue needed]

X-Cell[edit]

Callisto was later reunited with Marrow as members of X-Cell, a group of mutants who hold the government responsible for their power loss. When Quicksilver offered to repower its members, she warned Marrow about what happens to non-Inhumans who gain power from the Terrigen Mist. She and Marrow later fled into the sewers to escape the government.[volume & issue needed]

Return to the sewers[edit]

At some point, Callisto returned to the sewers, this time alone. However, she is later discovered by various teen and young adult runaways, who she begins to care for, though with a firm but caring hand. Storm later stumbles upon this group while investigating one of the young girl's disappearance, and she and Callisto let old feelings surface and the two fight, but when Storm sees the girl helping Callisto, she realizes that the girl is there by choice, and the hostilities cease. Storm helps them clean up and before leaving offers Callisto to send regular help should they need it.[19]

Powers and abilities[edit]

A mutant, Callisto possesses enhanced senses of sight (including night vision), hearing, smell, taste, and touch, and possibly moderate degrees of enhanced strength and agility. It has also been suggested[20] that her mutant power grants her tactical brilliance that allows her to see the best way to engage in any given conflict. Callisto lost her mutant powers after the House of M;[volume & issue needed] her powers were restored temporarily through use of the Terrigen Mist, although her senses were enhanced to a point where normal sensations became painful.[volume & issue needed]

Callisto also has excellent hand-to-hand combat skills, and is an exceptional hunter and tracker. She is usually armed with knives.

Other versions[edit]

Age of Apocalypse[edit]

In the Age of Apocalypse, Callisto is neither a follower of Apocalypse nor an enemy of his regime. She's the leader of a band of pirates that attack the few vessels that venture through the Infernal Gallop to Avalon.[21] She captures the submarine Excalibur and kills all of its passengers, except for Nightcrawler, and ends up being killed by Mystique.[22]

Cross Time Capers[edit]

Another version of Callisto is seen when Excalibur confronts inadvertent visitors of a world dominated by Nazis. She is the bodyguard of Moira MacTaggert. These Nazis unintentionally send Excalibur on a long adventure known as the Cross-Time Caper.[volume & issue needed]

House of M[edit]

In the House of M, Callisto is the leader of the Marauders, a black ops team.[volume & issue needed]

Mutant X[edit]

In the Mutant X universe, she still leads the Morlocks, but is much more weak-willed and pacifist in nature. She is the lover of Mole Man.[23]

Ultimate Callisto[edit]

The Ultimate version of Callisto is introduced in Ultimate X-Men #82 as a member of the Morlocks.[24] Her look has remained virtually unchanged, and she has the mutant ability to sprout a mass of tentacles from her eye which is covered by an eye-patch. It is also apparent that she has no control over herself when the tentacles come out, as Caliban had to knock her out to keep her from killing Jean Grey during a fight with the X-Men.[25]

In other media[edit]

Television[edit]

  • Callisto appeared in X-Men: The Animated Series voiced by Susan Roman. She and the other Morlocks captured Cyclops and Jean Grey rather than Angel. In the Spanish-dubbed version of the show, Callisto is portrayed as a male character in the two-part episode Out of the Past. In the other episodes involving the Morlocks, Callisto is correctly voiced by a female Spanish actress.[citation needed]
  • Callisto also appears in X-Men: Evolution voiced by Saffron Henderson. She is depicted as a less-violent, more even-tempered leader of the Morlocks. She first appeared to sabotage a beverage company when its beverage Pow-R-8 (Power Eight) leaks into the sewers and is revealed to be poisonous to the mutants. She later returned when anti-mutant thugs were using laser technology to attack the X-Men, Spyke, and Leech. In contrast to her original personality, this Callisto is a voice of reason with Spyke being the more violent-minded vigilante.[citation needed]

Film[edit]

  • Dania Ramirez portrays Callisto in X-Men: The Last Stand. In the film version, Callisto possessed superhuman speed, strength, reflexes, agility, enhanced superhumanly acute senses, superb hunting and tracking abilities, and the ability to sense the powers and locations of other mutants, a power that, in the comics, belongs to her teammate Caliban. She was the leader of The Omegas and then joins forces with Magneto's Brotherhood of Mutants. In place of an eyepatch and scars, this version of Callisto is heavily tattooed and has many piercings, and she seems to harbor a dislike towards Storm. She was electrocuted by Storm after their climactic battle on Alcatraz.

Novelization[edit]

  • According to the book adaptation of X-Men: The Last Stand, she was the leader of the Marauders, an all-mutant gang before joining Magneto's Brotherhood of Mutants. According to a novelty card game, Callisto is said to have been born in the Dominican Republic and emigrated to Washington Heights New York as an infant where she honed her skills as a fighter and tracker. In the book she does not possess superhuman speed.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Uncanny X-Men #170
  2. ^ Uncanny X-Men #169-170
  3. ^ Uncanny X-Men #171
  4. ^ Uncanny X-Men #179
  5. ^ Uncanny X-Men #190-191
  6. ^ Uncanny X-Men #193
  7. ^ Uncanny X-Men #195
  8. ^ Uncanny X-Men #211
  9. ^ Uncanny X-Men #212
  10. ^ Excalibur #4
  11. ^ Excalibur #6
  12. ^ Excalibur #9
  13. ^ Excalibur #10
  14. ^ Excalibur #11
  15. ^ Uncanny X-Men #259-260
  16. ^ Uncanny X-Men #262
  17. ^ Uncanny X-Men #264
  18. ^ Excalibur #12–13
  19. ^ Storm #2
  20. ^ X-Treme X-Men #38
  21. ^ X-Calibre #2 (1995)
  22. ^ X-Calibre #2-3 (1995)
  23. ^ Mutant X #9 (June 1999)
  24. ^ Ultimate X-Men # 82
  25. ^ Ultimate X-Men # 83

External links[edit]