Variant cover to X-23 #1. Art by Gabriele Dell'Otto.
|First appearance||X-Men: Evolution
|First comic appearance||NYX #3 (2004)|
|Created by||Craig Kyle
|Alter ego||Laura Kinney|
|Species||Human Mutant, Clone|
|Team affiliations||The Facility
|Notable aliases||Laura X, Talon, Captain Universe|
|Abilities||Expert assassin, martial artist, sniper and demolitioner
Trained in use of long range weapons and explosives
Superhuman strength, senses, speed, agility, reflexes/reactions, coordination, balance and endurance
Regenerative healing factor
Retractable adamantium-coated bone claws in hands and feet
X-23 (Laura Kinney) is a fictional character, a superheroine appearing in comic books published by Marvel Comics, most commonly in association with the X-Men. She was originally created by Craig Kyle for the X-Men: Evolution animated series before debuting in the NYX comic series in 2004. Since then she has notably had two six-issue miniseries written by Craig Kyle and Christopher Yost, regular runs in New X-Men, X-Force, Avengers Academy, and her own self-titled twenty-one issue comic series written by Marjorie Liu.
X-23 is a female clone of Wolverine. Like Wolverine, X-23 has a regenerative healing factor, superhuman strength, senses, speed, agility, and reflexes. She also has retractable adamantium-coated bone claws in her hands and feet.
Cloned from a damaged copy of Wolverine's genome, X-23 was created to be the perfect killing machine. For years, she proved herself a notable assassin working for the Facility. A series of tragedies eventually lead her to Wolverine and the X-Men. She attends the X-Mansion before serving a stint as part of the X-Force. Her most recent appearance was in the All-New X-Men.
- 1 Publication history
- 2 Fictional character biography
- 2.1 Innocence Lost
- 2.2 Target X
- 2.3 NYX
- 2.4 X-Men
- 2.5 Captain Universe
- 2.6 Decimation
- 2.7 Mercury Falling
- 2.8 Quest for Magik
- 2.9 World War Hulk
- 2.10 Children of X-Men
- 2.11 Messiah Complex
- 2.12 X-Force
- 2.13 Messiah War
- 2.14 Not forgotten
- 2.15 Second Coming
- 2.16 Solo Adventures (X-23 vol. 3)
- 2.17 X-Men: Regenesis
- 2.18 All-New X-Men
- 3 Powers and abilities
- 4 Personality
- 5 Relationships
- 6 Other versions
- 7 In other media
- 8 Collected editions
- 9 References
- 10 External links
X-23 first appears in episode #41 (season 3, episode 11), titled "X-23", of the X-Men: Evolution animated television series.
Her comic debut was in 2004 in the series NYX, where her history and past were never divulged but her abilities were showcased. In X-23, her first miniseries, her origin was fully explained. She became part of the X-Men supporting cast in Uncanny X-Men #450.
X-23 was created by Craig Kyle. He and Christopher Yost were the writers of the two episodes of X-Men: Evolution in which X-23 appears ("X-23" and "Target X.") Kyle and Yost also scripted X-23: Innocence Lost, a six issue miniseries that details the character's origin, as well as X-23: Target X, a six issue miniseries that covers the character's experiences between her origin story and her appearance in NYX. They continued to write X-23 into their runs on New X-Men and X-Force as a member of the teams.
X-23 appeared as a regular character in Avengers Academy from issue #23 (Feb 2012) through its final issue #39 (Jan 2013).
Fictional character biography
A top-secret program is tasked to replicate the original Weapon X experiment that bonded adamantium to the skeleton of Wolverine. The project is taken in a new direction: Doctor Martin Sutter recruits renowned mutant geneticist Doctor Sarah Kinney to develop a clone of Wolverine.
Since the only genetic sample from Weapon X is damaged, Kinney is unable to salvage the Y chromosome. Kinney proposes the creation of a female genetic twin; her request is denied. Sutter's protégé Doctor Zander Rice, whom he has raised after Rice's father was killed by the original Weapon X, is opposed to the idea. After 22 failed attempts at reconstituting the DNA using a duplicate X chromosome, the 23rd sample yields a viable sample to combine with an embryo. Although Kinney is allowed to proceed, Rice exacts revenge for her insubordination by forcing her to act as the surrogate mother of the specimen. For nine months, Kinney's every move is monitored; finally, she gives birth to "X-23".
After seven years, Rice subjects X-23 to radiation poisoning in order to activate her mutant gene. He extracts her claws, coats them with adamantium, and reinserts them back into her hands and feet – a procedure performed without affording the child any anesthetic. Rice creates a "trigger scent" that drives X-23 into a murderous rage when she detects it. X-23 is then trained to be a hired assassin, ordered to kill "anyone ... everyone ... for a price."
Kinney's niece Megan is abducted by a serial killer; she smuggles X-23 out of the facility to rescue her. X-23 tracks the abductor to his apartment, kills him, and frees Megan. Kinney is fired when she returns and is escorted off the base. Shortly thereafter, Rice assigns X-23 to eliminate Sutter and his family. He orders her to keep it secret. X-23 reveals to Sarah that Rice is responsible for the murders. Before Kinney leaves, Rice reveals a chamber containing the incubation pods for subjects X-24 through X-50.
Kinney drafts a letter to her daughter, assigning her a final mission: destroy the pods and kill Rice. X-23 succeeds and meets her mother, and they prepare to flee. However, prior to his death, Rice exposed Kinney to the trigger scent. X-23 goes into a murderous frenzy and kills her mother. As she lies dying, Kinney tells X-23 that her name is Laura and that she loves her, and hands her the letter and pictures of Charles Xavier, Wolverine, and the Xavier Institute.
After being arrested by S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, X-23 awakens bound and gagged in the company of Captain America and Matt Murdock, who proceed to interrogate her about her past. X-23 describes how she traveled to San Francisco and tracked down Megan and Debbie (her mother's sister). Introducing herself as Sarah's daughter, she moves in with them. Although Megan experiences vivid nightmares of her abduction, her family believes these to be utter fantasies. X-23 informs Megan that the man in her nightmares was indeed real and that she killed him.
Debbie's boyfriend turns out to be an agent for the Facility who has been instructed to manipulate X-23 into killing Megan and Debbie using the trigger scent. The agent fumbles the assignment and is killed by X-23. Facility agents storm the house, led by the woman who served as X-23's handler, Kimura. Kimura had treated X-23 harshly in the facility, punishing her even if the missions went according to plan.
X-23 manages to get Megan and Debbie to safety by handcuffing Kimura to a radiator and then triggering an explosion in the house, buying some time. After X-23 and Megan part, X-23 decides to confront the man who made her creation possible, Wolverine.
X-23 tracks Wolverine to Xavier's mansion and engages him in a battle, defeating him using tactics and maneuverability. She does not kill Wolverine, instead telling him why she came. Wolverine reveals that he is aware of X-23's ordeal, having received a detailed letter from her mother. The talk is interrupted when Captain America comes to arrest Laura.
Despite the mayhem in her past, Matt Murdock accepts X-23's innocence. Captain America wants X-23 to atone for the murders she has committed. He ultimately frees X-23 in order to avoid S.H.I.E.L.D. exploiting her as their own weapon.
X-23 surfaces in New York City and is taken in by a pimp named Zebra Daddy. She works as a prostitute who caters to sadomasochistic patrons. X-23 continues to cut herself with her own claws, is mostly mute, and proves unable to free herself from the grip of Zebra Daddy. Upon meeting Kiden Nixon, a young mutant with the ability to freeze time when in danger, and Tatiana Caban, a mutant who can take on the physical attributes of whoever and whatever she comes into contact with via their blood, X-23 starts to come to her senses. Although she runs away from Zebra Daddy, he tracks her down. With the aid of her new-found friends (and the mutant named Bobby Soul), Zebra Daddy and his thugs are defeated: X-23 kills him to save the lives of her friends.
X-23 takes a job as a waitress at the mutant-themed "Wannabee's" nightclub in the Mutant Town district of New York. She defends Jade Parisi, daughter of mob boss Don Parisi, against some thugs who berate her for having a mutant boyfriend. X-23 kills some of the thugs and helps Jade escape and go into hiding. The deaths inadvertently implicate Wolverine, prompting his teammates to investigate. X-23 attacks Wolverine on sight, but he eventually calms her down. She leads the X-Men to Parisi's daughter. After aiding the X-Men against Parisi's mutant enforcer Geech, X-23 flees the scene. This encounter is later revealed to be partially arranged between X-23 and Wolverine in order for her to encounter and ally with the X-Men without revealing her past.
She later returns to help the X-Men save victims of a car accident, after which she is enrolled at the Xavier Institute and assigned a room with Rachel Summers and Kitty Pryde. X-23 behaves protectively towards Wolverine, observing him on the mansion's security monitors and even attacking his teammate Bishop after he floors Wolverine during a training session.
During one of her sessions at the mansion's monitors, an anomalous energy spike prompts X-23 to investigate. She encounters Spider-Man at the source of the signal; mistaking him for an enemy, she attacks him. The pair ultimately team up to save the young mutant Paul Patterson from an alternate reality version of Iron Man known as Iron Maniac. The arrival of Captain America and the super-spy Black Widow help turn the tide, with Spider-Man and X-23 destroying Iron Maniac's equipment using their own version of the classic Fastball Special.
X-23 secretly follows Wolverine on his investigation of strange activity in the Canadian Rockies. Ambushed by the Hauk'ka, evolved Saurians from the Savage Land, X-23 manages to escape and alert the X-Men. Traveling to the Savage Land, X-23 and the X-Men team-up with the Savage Land's lord Ka-Zar and his allies, the Savage Land Mutates, to prevent the Hauk'ka from destroying human civilization by exerting control over the weather-manipulating X-Man, Storm.
X-23 is empowered by the cosmic Uni-Power to become Captain Universe. She quickly learns that A.I.M. is seeking the Uni-Power in hopes of using it against their enemies. She agrees to help the Uni-Power, and travels with a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent called the Scorpion to a secret A.I.M. hideout. There, they discover information on the Uni-Power that is being transferred to another facility. The Scorpion attempts to copy the information, but is stopped by X-23. The Scorpion is then ordered to take her into custody, but covers for her instead and allows X-23 to escape. At the close of the issue, the Uni-Power bids farewell to X-23, and parts ways with her.
After the events of House of M and Decimation, X-23 was one of the few mutants to retain her powers. X-23, having previously left the institute off-panel, returns to the X-Mansion at Wolverine's insistence. Laura is assigned a room with fellow mutant student Sooraya Qadir. She begins to develop an attraction towards Julian Keller, aka Hellion, protecting him while participating in holographic combat simulations created for members of the student body by David Alleyne, formerly a mutant codenamed Prodigy.
After Jay Guthrie appears bloodied and beaten on the doorstep of the institute, Emma Frost has the powered students compete in a free-for-all brawl, with those deemed to be the best performers assigned to a new team of trainee X-Men. Despite Frost's attempts to omit her, X-23 is among those students who excel during the exercise, and also receives unexpected aid from Hellion, whom Frost has instructed to take out X-23 from the battle first. She is placed on the team with Mercury, Dust, Hellion, Elixir, Rockslide, and team leader Surge by Cyclops, who thwarts Frost's attempts to keep her off the team by pulling rank.
As the depowered students and staff are leaving the school, their bus is bombed by anti-mutant religious zealot Reverend William Stryker. X-23 overhears Dust talking to Icarus, who had fled the Mansion. Dust intends to meet Jay, but Laura warns her that it's a trap, and takes Dust's place. Donning Dust's abayat and niqāb, X-23 is shot upon arriving at Stryker's compound. Laura returns to the Mansion and singlehandedly kills three Purifiers who have incapacitated Surge, Hellion, and Emma Frost.
When Surge receives a distress call from Forge, X-23 accompanies the New X-Men. Although the team disables the Nimrod unit, X-23 is grievously wounded and is unable to heal herself. In order to save X-23, Hellion convinces Emma Frost to unlock his telekinetic potential, increasing his powers (and thus, his speed) to a level thought impossible by an O.N.E. sentinel guard. This allows them to fly back to the mansion in time for Laura to be healed by Elixir.
While Laura is bonding over coffee with Cessily, the cafe is attacked by Kimura and her minions, who in turn capture Cessily. After Laura returns to the school, she and Hellion go off to locate the Facility's whereabouts. X-23 interrogates a man at gun point, and upon securing the information, shoots him in the head. Hellion informs her that killing will no longer be a part of their interrogation technique.
X-23 and Hellion infiltrate the Facility and after an encounter with Kimura, the two soon find Cessily in liquid form, barely able to compose herself. They are attacked by Predator X, who has absorbed Cessily's liquid mercury skin. X-23 and Hellion decide to fall back, but are pursued by the Predators. The group is once again ambushed, only to be rescued by the Astonishing X-Men and New X-Men. The two teams turn the tables on the attackers, and defeat the remaining facility troops. During the shuffle, the remaining Predator escapes.
Sometime later, Emma Frost finds Kimura trying to assassinate X-23, and confronts her, erasing the one happy moment in Kimura's life from her memory, and psychically suggesting that Kimura's assignment now is to hunt down the remaining members of the Facility and kill them.
Quest for Magik
Searching for Magik, the demon lord Belasco brings the students to Limbo. X-23 is one of the students trapped there. She is depicted trying to fight off her restraints. X-23's enhanced sight enables her to see the Institute and she tells Trance to use her astral projection powers to go to the Institute. She tells Elixir that Belasco plans to kill David, Dust, and Mercury. Afterwards, she urges Mercury and Dust to fight Belasco. The demon lord is not impressed by her attacks, and, as he declares her soul not worth taking, reduces X-23 to nothing but bones and adamantium claws with an energy blast. He later uses his magic to resurrect her, but then proceeds to torture X-23, claiming he will kill and resurrect as many of the students as he desires until Magik is brought to him. She is then revived by Elixir and at David's instructions, frees the Stepford Cuckoos before slowing Belasco's stride.
World War Hulk
X-23 goes up against the Hulk. With several other students, she pins him down, but is knocked away when he regains his strength. Attacking him a second time, she manages to blind him with the claw in her foot. Hulk recovers, grabs X-23, and hurls her into the mansion, stating grimly he hopes she heals like Wolverine.[volume & issue needed]
Children of X-Men
X-23 and Rockslide were trying to convince Anole to cut off his other arm so it would grow back stronger. After Anole refuses, she is later seen being interviewed by Surge about what happened to Prodigy in Limbo.
Later, the students of the Xavier Institute are trying to find out which one of them is the youngest mutant on the planet. During the meeting, Surge kisses Hellion, which upsets X-23 and she runs away. Mercury finds her in the girl’s restroom, having trashed it in a fit of rage. She wonders what is happening and does not understand what she is feeling. Mercury hugs her and tries to reassure her that anyone can feel jealous and that she is not alone anymore. In the end, she is seen lying on the floor laughing and relaxing with Mercury and Dust.
Some of the New X-Men decide to launch a preemptive strike against the Purifiers. While spying on the Purifiers, X-23 manages to impress Armor with her senses. They are ambushed by the Reavers, whose leader, Lady Deathstrike mortally wounds Hellion and after a brief fight. Pixie manages to teleport the team out, and they are spread between Washington and the Institute.
After Iceman picks up the New X-Men, the mansion is attacked by Sentinels. He and X-23 take them out. Cyclops, realizing he has to up the stakes and get the child no matter what, decides it is time to assemble the X-Force which features Laura, Wolverine, Wolfsbane, Caliban, Warpath, and Hepzibah.
While in pursuit of Cable and the mutant newborn, X-Force battles Lady Deathstrike and her new Reavers. Wolverine sets X-23 against Deathstrike, who wants revenge for her nearly killing Hellion, and seemingly kills her after crippling her cybernetic systems and her healing factor. Later, she traveled with X-Force to Eagle Plaza in Dallas and then to Muir Island, the Marauders' new base. During the heavy battle between the X-Men and the Marauders, X-23 saves Wolverine's life, killing Scrambler just before he scrambled Wolverine's healing factor.
After the events of Messiah Complex, Cyclops decides to form a black ops incarnation of X-Force that would be able to use any means necessary, including lethal force, to preemptively deal with the threats that would be too dangerous or unsavory for the X-Men to handle normally. X-23 is the first member to join the team as she is drafted by Cyclops due to her inherent tracking skills as well as assassination training. Wolverine is later approached to lead the team, and although he accepts, he becomes angry and disappointed to find out that Cyclops had drafted Laura without consulting him first. He is also disappointed that Laura had agreed to join an operation that would expose her to the same types of brutality and ruthlessness that he had been trying to remove her from in the first place.
Wolverine asks her to reconsider taking part in the operation, since he feels that she does not understand what she is giving up and stating that if she continues down this path she will not be Laura anymore, but X-23 once again. When Laura does not step down, Wolverine concedes "Fine. Your life."
The team's first mission has them investigating the theft of Bastion's cyborg head from a S.H.I.E.L.D. base. The mission is a failure and Matthew Risman, the leader of the Purifiers, escapes from what is left of the building ruthlessly blown up by X-23, holding Wolfsbane as his hostage.
When X-Force regroups later, Wolverine admonishes Laura for being so reckless with the lives of her teammates and for letting Rahne get kidnapped. Laura remorselessly replies to both accusations by coldly remarking "they survived" and "saving Wolfsbane was not my mission." When X-Force retrieves Elixir so that he can heal Wolfsbane, Laura is seen approaching Wolverine outside. Laura remarks that Rahne should have known better. Her comment made Wolverine angry and he admonishes her, telling her that Rahne is the person they should die for. This confuses Laura, and she is seen alone in the forest, mutilating herself with her claws. She then catches the scent of Elixir and Angel's blood respectively, and runs off to help them. She reaches the room just in time to see Wolfsbane standing above Warren with his wings in her jaws. Laura prepares to attack Wolfsbane, but remembers what Wolverine said to her earlier about Wolfsbane being the one they should die for. Therefor she allows Wolfsbane to slash her open instead.
X-23 stays by Elixir's side as they both watch Wolverine and Warpath attack Angel -who has turned into his archangel form- and witness Archangel wound Wolverine. Laura is then wounded by Archangel.
After the group manages to defeat (or rather delay) Bastion's evil plans, the X-Men attempt to understand what has happened to Wolfsbane and Angel, and also decide what to do with Elixir, who unfortunately knows too much about X-Force. X-23 believes the easiest solution would be to kill Elixir, but she does not want to do that. Instead, she goes behind everyone's back and contacts the Stepford Cuckoos, who are loyal to Cyclops and would keep X-Force's existence a secret. X-23 and Josh request that the Three-in-One erase Josh's memories of X-Force, thus allowing him to return home without being a risk to the team.
Around this time, a S.H.I.E.L.D. member known as Agent Morales begins looking into X-23's past when she comes across images of the Purifier massacre.
When the team is joined by Domino, X-23 also does not trust her, even going so far as to have her claws out when Domino is in the same room with her.
When Vanisher comes to Angel's mansion, demanding to know what they have done to him, X-23 confronts him with the rest of the team. When Archangel says that clones "are not real", X-23 does not appear to care. Elixir looks at her worriedly. She takes part in retrieving the Legacy Virus that Vanisher left behind. X-23 also attacks the Marauders' clones that attack them, killing them with very little hesitation. X-23 then tells Elixir not to "hold back" against the Marauders' clones. When X-23 tries to kill herself due to becoming infected with the Legacy Virus, Elixir stops her and gets rid of the Legacy Virus.
X-23 moves with the X-Men to San Francisco, where they are accepted as heroes by the mayor, having rejected the Fifty State Initiative. X-23 shares a room with Armor and Pixie. Laura leaves behind a towel covered with blood, which Pixie brings to Emma Frost. Frost states that it was not Laura's blood and brings the matter to the Cabal.
In Cable #15, X-23 is finally reunited with Kiden Nixon, who herself makes her first appearance outside the NYX series. Sadly this future version of Kiden is hooked up to several machines and is used as a generator in order to create a temporal anomaly that disrupts time travel technology, essentially trapping X-Force (which is lethal for them if they do not return within 33.5 hours), Cable and Hope in this era. While X-23 agonizes over killing Kiden or not (Kiden herself asks for death) the matter is taken out of her hands when Domino shoots and kills her.
X-23, Domino, and Proudstar are dispatched back in order to save Boom Boom, however both Domino and Proudstar fall ill due to the time travel. Feeling grateful for saving her friend and ending her suffering, X-23 disables the time travel devices on the other two and goes back in time in order to save Boom Boom herself.
She arrives just in time to stop the suicidal Leper Queen from killing Boom Boom. X-23 then collapses in exhaustion. H.A.M.M.E.R. agents then storm the building, giving medical care, while they take X-23 in for questioning. However they are not really H.A.M.M.E.R. agents, and they take her back to the Facility, much to the surprise of Agent Morales. There Laura is reunited with Kimura, who saws off her left arm. Agent Morales arrives and helps Laura to escape. Kimura is trapped under a blast door while Laura and Agent Morales find themselves in a room containing large tanks filled with the Trigger Scent. While inside the room, Laura cuts the claws out of her severed arm and gives them to Morales for safekeeping. She lights a Molotov cocktail of sorts which sets the sprinkler system off. The Facility soldiers finish cutting through to Laura just as Kimura realizes the sprinklers are spraying the Trigger Scent everywhere. X-23 goes feral and kills all the soldiers in her way. She gets to the Facility head's office just as the sprinklers start spraying water, washing away the scent. Kimura manages to club Laura from behind and then kills the Facility head, planning on framing Laura for it. Agent Morales arrives and sets Kimura on fire to distract her while she and Laura make their escape. Morales reveals she rigged the place to explode and they get out in time. The rest of X-Force arrives and takes Laura and her severed claws home, leading into the events of Necrosha.
In 2010 in a one-shot comic called X-23, Laura reunites with her friends from the NYX series.
X-23 is shown to be part of Cyclops' "Alpha Roster" in the course of Second Coming event arc. Laura, along with the most of X-Force, accompany Cable and Cypher to the future in an attempt to shut down the Nimrod invasion. Following Cypher successfully over-riding the programming, Laura attempts to return through the temporal portal, only to sustain horrific injuries. The portal prevents any organic matter travelling through it. This leads Cable to sacrifice himself, allowing his techno-organic virus to overwhelm him, forcing the portal open and making it possible for the team to return to Utopia.
In the fall-out of the Second Coming, Wolverine cuts X-23 from the team, citing she has been following orders all her life, from the Facility, Weapon Plus and the X-Men. He tells her its time she made her own choices and follow her own path.
Shortly after her dismissal from X-Force, X-23 tracks a former Weapon X scientist named Detlef Metzger to a restaurant. After tying up and gagging a waitress and stealing her uniform, X-23 infiltrates the diner with the intention of capturing the man before he can perform experiments using a vial of Wolverine's blood. Before she can make her move, a group of US soldiers arrive and escape with Metzger. As the soldiers drive off, X-23 notices that Daken had been in the same restaurant and had been watching her.
Solo Adventures (X-23 vol. 3)
The Killing Dream
X-23 begins having apocalyptic nightmares involving a demonic Wolverine asking her to be his "right hand in hell." Due to this, she sleeps outside as not to cause any alarm among her roommates. A rift has arisen between her and her former teammates, who are now wary of her due to her having been a part of X-Force. The only ones who side with her are Dust and Hellion. She pleasantly surprises Hellion when she tells him she has missed him, and the two share a brief moment. However, Surge's antagonizing of Laura forces Cyclops to intervene. He then tells her to visit a halfway house in San Francisco for former mutants who are trying to live normal lives. As she steps into the building, she suddenly experiences a vision similar to her dreams with the building on fire and her surrounded by dismembered corpses.
A flashback opening the second chapter of "The Killing Dream" shows Wolverine and X-23 at a theme park. While they are preparing for the roller coaster to launch, Wolverine states he is adopting her as his daughter. When brought back to the present, the fire was implied to be started by the devil possessing Wolverine. He meets X-23 in the hospital and seemingly "kills" Hellion before diving into her mind. He tries to convince her to join him as his queen in Hell. X-23 finds her inner "light" and banishes him from her mind. She awakes to find that there is blood everywhere but she and Hellion are fine. She also notices a symbol on her hand (Marjorie Liu promises that the symbol will be a long mystery). The X-Men are perplexed about her situation and want her to stay so that they can "fix" her, but Gambit convinces them otherwise. X-23 silently visits Hellion's room (unaware that he knows she was there) before she leaves Utopia.
Songs Of The Orphan Child
X-23 begins her journey towards self-discovery. X-23, flanked by Gambit, encountered a young girl named Alice and witness her being murdered. However, they encounter Alice the next day, very much alive and well. Encouraging them to follow her to a peculiar desert laboratory, Alice introduces them to her employer/owner/adoptive mother: Claudine (Miss Sinister). Revealing herself openly to X-23, Claudine explains that Alice is also a clone, fourth of a series of five created by Essex as another experiment alongside several other children that live in the complex. She then expands upon her own origins, stating that the process of becoming what she is left her with vague, but invasive memories of Essex's life and that as a malignant presence within her mind. He is slowly killing her as a means of self-resurrection. He even manages to manifest briefly before being re-absorbed back into her. Claudine then incapacitates Gambit and straps X-23 to a peculiar chair, stating her aim to switch their bodies - thus inheriting Laura's healing factor. She has wanted the healing factor since her stabbing, and hopes it will free her of Essex. The plan backfires when Essex in fact controls Laura's body and uses her to mortally wound Claudine again. Laura manages to overcome Essex's presence in her mind, expelling it through force of will. Laura, Alice and Gambit manage to escape the laboratory as it collapses and arrange for the children to be given new homes before setting off on their journey again. In the wreckage left behind, Claudine is still barely alive, and is being watched over by the fifth Alice Clone - the new host of Essex.
|This section requires expansion. (March 2015)|
X-23 and Gambit arrive in Madripoor in pursuit of Malcolm Concord, a man that wants to revive the Weapon X program that created Wolverine.
X-23 and Gambit travel to Paris after the events of Collision, in pursuit of the person that has bought the Trigger Scent that sends her into a berserk rage, and the genetic DNA of X-23 and Daken. Gambit has discovered that X-23 still causes bodily harm to herself. His paternal instincts cause him to call Wolverine to Paris to help console X-23.
Wolverine arrives at X-23 and Gambit's hotel room, with Jubilee as company, who X-23 nearly attacks because of the scent of a vampire on her. Wolverine and X-23 converse on top of the hotel roof about her mental state and Logan gives her advice about filling her heart with better memories. Gambit questions Wolverine about why he never treated X-23 with the same compassion as Jubilee. Wolverine admits that he did not make the right decisions with X-23 and is going to make attempts to rectify it for both X-23 and Jubilee.
X-23 and Jubilee are walking on the streets of Paris, and are harassed by a group of men. Jubilee manages to get the group to leave them alone. X-23 then slits her own neck, thereby arousing Jubilee's vampire instincts and attempts to gorge her fangs into her. Jubilee tastes X-23 blood with her tongue and witnesses the violent visions of X-23's memories. This causes Jubilee to fight her temptation and overcome the blood lust.
Jubilee questions X-23 if her offering her blood was a twisted joke and attempts to hit her in anger, but the punch is stopped due to X-23's reflexes. Jubilee explains that despite being a predator, she wants to keep the remaining shards of her humanity intact. She decided to leave Utopia because the people she once considered friends are now afraid of her, to the point of wanting to kill her. X-23 empathizes with her because she was born and raised to be a killer, and murder is the only way she knows she is alive. X-23 left because she could not just become someone new with the others watching and judging. Jubilee questions why X-23 offered her blood, and her reply was to see if Jubilee would give in to her predatory impulses. However it is suggested that there was a hidden agenda in her answer.
Gambit receives a call from a Paris criminal underworld contact about an arms auction in Paris that is selling a trigger scent. Later in the night, X-23, Gambit, Jubilee and Wolverine infiltrate the weapons auction. They are unable to find the woman in charge of the auction. X-23 picks up a scent and runs towards an elevator, and shuts it before Jubilee can get in. A mysterious voice that X-23 recognizes and is a person on her kill list is speaking to her via intercom. The voice says to her that the scent has been upgraded and now anyone can be affected by it, but X-23 rages are special. X-23 becomes affected by the scent as the elevator arrives at a subway. Before X-23 starts killing civilians, Jubilee tries to subdue her, but to no avail, as X-23 attempts to kill her. Jubilee pushes X-23 onto the train tracks just as a subway car is coming towards both of them at full speed.
At the last second, Jubilee leaps and tackles X-23 away from the speeding train. X-23's leg is run over, but she bends it back into position and attempts to continue her assault on Jubilee. Gambit and Wolverine intervene to calm X-23's rage. Wolverine takes the full impact of her blows stating that he is not going to give up on her. Gambit manages to get X-23 to remember who really cares about her. X-23's rage disappears and she apologizes to the group.
While having a dream of a mysterious symbol, Laura wakes up in a cab with Gambit in New York. The two later meet with Cecilia Reyes, as Gambit was bleeding from his groin, and X-23 left him in Cecilia's care while she went to search Alex Cimini for information. After finding him in a lab in the University Physics Department, she leaves. Unknown to her, a bright light appeares in the lab Alex was in. While walking on the street, Laura sees the same symbol from her dream in the sky and on a man. An earthquake follows and the building near her collapses. As Laura was helping an elderly woman come down from a building, Spider-Man appears and helps bring them down. Laura and Spider-Man later see the symbol appearing in the sky at the same time, and they both realize that they have been dreaming of the same symbol. After the two help save civilians from the collapsed building, Laura and Spider-Man are approached by Reed Richards, Susan Storm and Ben Grimm. The Future Foundation then bring Laura back to the Baxter Building to run some tests and discover that she is emitting the same energy signatures that were responsible for the earthquake. Later, a device shows Reed and Valeria that Laura, Spider-Man and Sue were all emitting the same energy signature. Spider-Man realises that the energy emitting from them is involved with the Uni-Power that changes beings into Captain Universe. While discussing this, Valeria activates the device and Laura, Spider-Man and Sue are transported to an alien world. There they are confronted by monstrous warriors. The creatures are revealed to be the Whirldemons, creatures imprisoned by Prince Wayfinder, who eventually became the Enigma Force. During her confrontation with the Whirldemon King, Laura learns that the emblem on her hand is a mark associated with the Enigma force. She bonds with the entity a second time to repair the seal preventing the demons from escaping into the world again.
Misadventures In Babysitting
X-23 babysits Reed and Susan's children Franklin and Valeria. She is trying to decide what direction to take in her life. Valeria and Franklin Richards play with a temporal window, that unleashes a dragon. Hellion appears as all of them are transported to a space junkyard. Hellion finally kisses X-23 only to be rejected by her saying that she no longer has feelings for him. Jubilee appears to tell her to come back to Utopia so that she can make a decision as to what side of the "schism" she wants to be on.
X-23 was asked by Wolverine to join him. She replies by asking if there is any other choice. While she thinks about what choice she will make, X-23 goes for a walk with Jubilee and asks her why she chose Cyclops' side. Jubilee tells her she chose to stay with Cyclops because, as a vampire, she can hear the heartbeat of everyone around her, and it makes her hungry and wants to eat them. X-23 tells her that she will not hurt them but Jubilee tells her that the urge is there and that she needs to fight as much she needs blood. She cannot be with Wolverine because she is afraid to violate his new philosophy: if you are a kid you do not fight, and he sees her as a kid. Jubilee tells X-23 that Logan sees her the same way, they both agree that it sucks. X-23's phone rings as the others need an answer, but they ignore it and Jubilee tells X-23 to go and have some fun and dance. X-23 explains that she cannot dance, but Jubilee tells her it does not matter because she is hot. X-23 tells her she is not hot. However, as they go, someone follows them. While Jubilee was dancing, X-23 become distracted by looking at someone and recognized him as the person who took over Zebra Daddy's operation. She and Jubilee attack him and his men and take the girl who was with him since she knew where the other girls were and how to free them. As they think about what to do with the girls, because they cannot just call the police, the Black Widow and some S.H.I.E.L.D. agents appear and take the girls to help them. Natasha offers X-23 to come to the Avengers Academy and she accepts. The next day she tells Logan what happened, and Wolverine tells her he is going to miss her and he is sorry he could not do better by her. She tells him she is going to miss him too, then she takes a motorcycle and drives to the Academy.
Following Fear Itself, X-23 appears as one of the students at the new Avengers Academy. The Academy sees she does not need any combat training after she fought Tigra. After she introduced herself to the other students, she explained to Mettle the difference between killing an innocent and killing to protect an innocent, telling him that he is not a psycho killer, and that they can talk more about it another time. This makes Hazmat feel jealous. Finesse became friends with X-23 due to their lack of emotion. Finesse also stood by X-23 when she opposed the X-Men locking their students on the Academy grounds during Avengers vs. X-Men. However, their friendship took a turn for the worse when Jeremy Briggs tried to release a superhuman cure. After Briggs took out X-23 and tried to acid burn her, Finesse grabs X-23's arms and fatally stabs Briggs in the radial and femoral arteries, making him bleed to death. X-23 first thought she killed him, but when she finds out it was Finesse, she was furious. X-23 agrees to keep Finesse's secret, but declares they are no longer friends, upsetting Finesse.
After Avengers vs. X-Men and the conclusion of Avengers Academy, X-23 was part of the students abducted by Arcade in Avengers Arena. Arcade turns them loose for 30 days in Murderworld to fight for survival. In a flash forward, it is shown that on the penultimate day, she attacks Hazmat and is badly burned, but the results are unknown as the flash forward then ends. The Academy students set up camp and face off against the Runaways when Chase is framed, but X-23 is soon separated from Reptil and Hazmat when Arcade covers the group in trigger scent and Reptil evacuates Hazmat. X-23 then finds Justin and helps him strip down his Sentinel. When Apex kills Justin and takes his Sentinel, X-23 goes to track them and get them back. After nearly being killed by Apex, Arcade unleashes trigger scent on all of Murderworld to send X-23 in a berserker rage, at which point she injures Hazmat, as seen in the flash forward. Cullen turns into a giant monster and fights X-23, defeating her and powering her down from her rage. After that, X-23 continues to injure Hazmat until Anachronism steps in, angry over Nara's death and holding X-23 responsible, attacking X-23 and inadvertently saving Hazmat. By this point, most of X-23's body is badly burned with radiation, and she is still in this state when the competition ends and Nico, Chase, Cammi, Deathlocket, and Anachronism call Hank Pym, Abigail Brand, Maria Hill, Captain Britain, and Wolverine to pick up the kids. X-23 is loaded onto a SHIELD helicopter and is taken away to parts unknown, ending her affiliation with the Avengers Academy.
Unlike the other Arena survivors, X-23 did not join the group in infiltrating the Masters of Evil. After the events of Avengers Arena, X-23 is found amnesiac and being hunted by the Purifiers by Kitty Pryde and the time-displaced original X-Men.
After being found by Kitty, Laura was taken to their base to recover. When Laura wakes up, with her memories now returning, at the former Weapon X facility she immediately tries to escape. Teen Cyclops goes to talk to her, while he's gone Teen Jean mentions to the team that Teen Cyclops "fancies" Laura. As Laura makes it outside she's met by Teen Cyclops who was waiting for her. Teen Cyclops tries to calm her down but Laura only ceases hostility after getting Teen Cyclops scent and figuring out that Teen Cyclops is who he says he is.
The two talk with X-23 telling him that she doesn't want to talk about her past or what happened to her. Suddenly Teen Cyclops awkwardly hugs her, when she was distracted and looking sad, because he thought she needed a hug. Laura tells him that she doesn't do hugs, especially not with an audience as Kitty, Teen Jean, and Teen Beast were watching them. Teen Jean expressed a very conflicted look upon her face due to the hug and having read part of Laura's mind thus she knows what happened in Avengers Arena. Laura thanks them for helping her and suggests they take the fight to the Purifiers, but in order for her to track them down, they'll have to return her to where they found her.
Upon finding the Purifier base they immediately set out to attack them. However the fight doesn't go well and the entire team is knocked unconscious by Stryker Jr. when Teen Jean learns too late that Stryker Jr. has powers of his own. X-23 is also with the All-New X-Men when Teen Jean is abducted by the Shi'ar and the X-Men team up with the Guardians of the Galaxy to save her. Later she is attacked by Raze, who disguises himself as her to infiltrate Cyclops's base.
Powers and abilities
X-23 is a female clone created from Wolverine's genetic material. Consequently, her mutant powers are similar to his. Like Wolverine, X-23's primary mutant ability is an accelerated healing factor that allows her to regenerate damaged or destroyed tissues with far greater speed, efficiency, and finality than an ordinary human. Injuries such as gunshot wounds, slashes, and puncture wounds completely heal within a matter of minutes. She has also been shown to be able to reattach limbs; for example, she reattached her hand in seconds after she severed it to escape the restraints placed on her by Kimura. The effects of her accelerated healing powers extend to her body's immune system, rendering her immune to disease and infection. She is also immune to most drugs and toxins, although she can be affected by certain drugs if given sufficient dosage. Given the regenerative nature of her cells, it's implied that—like Wolverine—her powers will heavily retard the aging process.
X-23's mutant healing factor heightened her physical senses, strength, speed, agility, reflexes/reactions, coordination, balance, endurance to superhuman levels. Like Wolverine, X-23 possesses retractable claws sheathed within her forearms. She releases the claws through the tissue of her knuckles, leaving small wounds which are healed by her healing factor. Unlike Wolverine, however, X-23 has only two claws per hand. She also possesses a single, retractable claw housed within each foot. These claws are actually made of bone and were forcefully extracted by Zander Rice, sharpened, coated with adamantium, and reinserted into her body. Also unlike Wolverine, X-23 escaped before the procedure to fuse her entire skeleton with adamantium could be performed. Since the claws are laced with adamantium, they are virtually unbreakable and are capable of cutting almost any substance. The known exceptions are adamantium itself, Kimura's skin, and the alloy of Captain America's shield.
In addition to her own innate powers and skills, X-23 has twice been the host of the Enigma Force, providing her with many special abilities particular to the entity. She is the first mutant to be chosen by the entity as its host, as well as being one of a handful of individuals to do so more than once. At the end of their second encounter, the Enigma Force named X-23 as the heir to its power. This permanent association was first indicated by a mark appearing on the palm of her right hand at the conclusion of the "Killing Dream" arc of her solo series.
Born and raised in captivity, X-23 has been trained to become a living weapon. She is highly trained in the use of long range weapons and explosives and is a formidable hand-to-hand combatant, with intensive training in numerous armed and unarmed martial arts techniques. She has also been subjected to conditioning in which a specific "trigger scent" has been used to send her into a berserker rage, killing anything in sight; Emma Frost is unsure if this will ever be fully suppressed. She is also highly educated and so far has displayed that she is fluent in French and Japanese, while Zander Rice once described her intellect as being "off the charts."
||This section is written like a personal reflection or opinion essay that states the Wikipedia editor's particular feelings about a topic, rather than the opinions of experts. (May 2015)|
Upon initially encountering her, X-23 might be mistaken for a typical young woman, calm and quiet. However, as her character evolved, she has become somewhat darker and more complex. X-23 is very taciturn, rarely uttering more than one sentence or two at a time. Because she grew up in a controlled environment, she speaks using perfect grammar, rarely using slang. She also engages in self-injury, cutting herself with her own claws; this is something she has done since a very young age. X-23 is a highly trained and skilled combatant; she is able to kill dozens of heavily armed opponents during a single encounter.
X-23's mother, Dr. Sarah Kinney, did her best to ensure the child retained some semblance of humanity, but her efforts appeared to be in vain. X-23 rarely spoke, or expressed much interest in her mother, who was forced to reject any emotional advance the girl might make, such as laying her head in her mother's lap, because of the Facility. Despite the upbringing X-23 received, she has always shown signs of humanity. In one particular mission when X-23 was assigned to assassinate Martin Sutter and his family, she killed Sutter and his wife without hesitation, but she spared their young son, Henry.
X-23 seemed to have taken up a better disposition since joining the New X-Men. She became a student at the Xavier Institute, found friends in Dust and Mercury, and developed apparent romantic feelings towards Hellion. Being a central part of a team helped her adjust to the world. However, she still retains the cold, no-nonsense attitude that was evident in the Mercury Falling arc which, along with the Children of X-Men arc, showed that Laura also has trouble comprehending and expressing the many new emotions she has been experiencing for the very first time.
When Blackheart forced her to face her fears embodied in a single, perfect "adversary", her fears took the form of "X-666", a stereotypical cheerleader with murderous intents. X-666 then explained how she was meant to be the thing lacking to Laura to be truly human: while every human is "nuanced", possessing a dark side and an inner self rarely shown to others, Laura's upbringing left her utterly bidimensional, driven and apparently lacking any other personality trait beyond the ones she's already showing, unable to grow further as person.
One thing that Laura has shown frequently is selflessness. Laura puts the safety and well being of her friends, family, and teammates above her own. However it is also accompanied by low self-esteem; and while Laura values the lives of those around her, she places little value on her own well-being and sometimes makes suicidal decisions. Since leaving Utopia Laura has come to value her life more and become happier, though her social skills and grasp of emotions remain somewhat dull but nowhere near as bad as when she first started.
Being cloned from Wolverine's DNA, Logan is the closest thing Laura has to a father. The pair talk and interact with each other in ways that are consistent with a father-daughter relationship (Even though in New X-Men, Logan introduced her to the students as his sister). Logan acts protective towards Laura and seems to have her well-being at heart, such as when he openly voiced his disapproval of Cyclops putting her on X-Force; he, however, did not force her to leave, though he told Gambit that he thinks he should have. When the pair first meet, Logan offers to help her start over at the Xavier Institute and says that he knows better than anyone what she is going through. In the X-23 solo series Logan makes plans to adopt Laura as his daughter. Despite some bumps here and there the two have a strong familial relationship with one another.
Sarah was the first one to show X-23 any sort of affection in spite of her orders from the Facility to not treat her like a child. Sarah would frequently read her Pinocchio as a child and showed concern when she noticed the cuts Laura inflicted on herself. It took Laura sparing the life of Henry Sutter for Sarah to realize that she was just as guilty of using Laura as the rest of the Facility was. Deciding to make things right, Sarah hatched a plan to escape with Laura, destroy the Facility's work, and start over with her. However, thanks to Zander Rice lacing the trigger scent on her, Sarah was killed by Laura. With her dying breaths, Sarah tells X-23 her name is Laura. Sarah's final thoughts were left in a letter to Laura detailing her guilt, that she was Laura's mother, and the realization that she had come to love her. Sarah's death remains to this day the life that Laura regrets taking the most.
Laura's cousin on her mother's side. After escaping from the Facility Laura moved in with Sarah's sister Debbie and her daughter Megan. For a time the two connected and Megan even admitted to Laura being her best friend. However when Facility agents came to take Laura back, Laura helped them escape and helped make new identities so that they could hide. Laura and Megan then went their separate ways and have not heard from each other since, though Megan remains one of the people closest to Laura's heart.
A homeless mutant from New York City. Laura and Kiden met each other when Laura was a prostitute under the pimp Zebra Daddy. Kiden helped Laura to escape from her life as a prostitute and quickly befriended her though at this point Laura had difficulty speaking. Laura recounts in the X-23 One Shot, that Kiden and her friends did not know or care that she was a weapon. To them, Laura was their friend and part of their gang. Laura parts ways with them at the end of the one shot, returning with Wolverine but they leave on good terms and Kiden says that Laura will always have a place with them.
The first boy that Laura formed a crush on. At first Hellion was hostile towards her, but during the Mercury Rising arc the two grew closer. Mercury managed to pick up on Laura's feelings towards him though did not get her to admit to it. Over time Julian began to feel the same way, though their relationship never managed to get much further. When Julian lost his hands during Second Coming Laura stayed by him, watching him recover. After the Misadventures in Babysitting arc Laura ended things between her and Julian saying that she no longer felt the same way towards him. Laura and Hellion's relationship can be seen as reminiscent to the relationship between Wolverine and Jean Grey.
Gambit traveled with Laura during the X-23 solo series. The two became friends and looked out for another as Gambit helped her to cope with the changes in her life as well as giving her helpful life advice. He affectionately referred to her as "Petite" and even managed to get her calm down from a trigger scent induced rage. Gambit scolded Logan for not protecting Laura the way he protected Jubilee, to which Logan admitted to his failings as Laura's father. Gambit also went on to remark that Laura while damaged, she was far from being broken, contrary to everyone's perceptions of her. If Laura was truly broken she would not be trying to change. Logan later on thanked Gambit for succeeding with Laura where he failed. When Laura left to join to the Avengers Academy, she and Gambit shared a goodbye hug and he told her wherever she went she was not alone.
During the Touching Darkness arc of the X-23 series, Gambit had Wolverine come by to help Laura. Logan had brought Jubilee with him and X attacked her on sight due to her being a vampire. Though after getting some space between the two girls things managed to calm down. Laura had some jealousy towards Jubilee from the X-23 one shot as Logan treated her more like a daughter than he did her. Laura tried to bait Jubilee into killing her by slicing her neck open and counting on her bloodlust, though Jubilee managed to stop herself after witnessing one of Laura's memories. After talking things out, the two realized how much alike they were and became friends.
Logan's son and the closest thing Laura has to a brother. Daken is to X, what Sabretooth is to Wolverine, her opposite. Even though Laura admits that she and Daken are related by blood, the two are not family. Laura had fought with Daken when the Dark Avengers under Norman Osborn invaded Utopia. They did not truly meet until Laura and Gambit came to Madripoor looking to track down Malcolm Colcord. At first Daken does not believe that she is a clone of his father, until Laura reveals her claws. Daken berates her for coming to Madripoor and remarks that they are nothing alike. The two square off until Daken decides to offer his assistance, to which Laura rejects. When Daken confronts Colcord about his plans to restart Weapon X, he reveals his subterfuge to leading X-23 and Gambit to Colcord though this turns out be a ruse as well, as he incapacitates Gambit and helps Colcord capture Laura. Daken learns about Laura's past from Colcord and assists in her escaping from her cell. He remarks about Laura is a construct to which Laura retorts that he is just like her. Just like the Facility made Laura into a weapon, so did Romulus to Daken, to which responds that he owns his own fate. The two then enter a brief mutual alliance to destroy Colcord's new project. Before they part ways Daken asks Laura why she does not seek power when she could easily have it. Laura remarks that what she has to prove has nothing to do with power and then asks Daken why he seeks more power when he already has it. Daken remarks that power is all he has. Laura's encounter with Daken makes her realize that she owns her fate and can do with it what she wants. Daken does not seem to have the same hate towards Laura that he does with Logan, and seems more indifferent to her existence.
X-Men: The End
In the future presented in the X-Men: The End series of books, X-23 is an adult, and a prominent member of the X-Men and the X-Treme Sanctions Executive (XSE) X-23, M, and Iceman are sent to Hong Kong to locate and capture the renegade XSE member, Sage. However, Sage uses her considerable espionage skills to ambush X-23, attaching a mysterious collar to her neck that temporarily overwhelms X-23. Sage removes the collar and attempts to flee just as Iceman arrives and freezes her in ice, allowing the group to safely take her into custody.
X-23, Marvel Girl, M, and Wolverine are sent by Cyclops to locate the whereabouts of Mister Sinister, Gambit, and the missing Summers and LeBeau children. The group finds Sinister's hidden base but are immediately immobilized by an attack from the Ladies Mastermind. The team members live out fantasy existences until Wolverine breaks them free of the mind control. Charging deeper into the base, the group fights against Sinister's Marauders to save the children. Later, X-23 and the X-Men travel to Shi'ar space, and a massive battle ensues. She is one of the very few X-Men who survive and is seen attending to Kitty Pryde's speech at the end of the story (see X-Men: The End). Strangely, she not only appears to have an adamantium skeleton, but her muscle tissue appear robotic or techno-organic.
In this reality, it is shown that she is in love with Fantomex, and it is revealed during an illusion caused by the Ladies Mastermind that her dream is for them to be married as a normal suburban couple with a daughter.
Age of Apocalypse
In the 2005 miniseries X-Men: Age of Apocalypse, a version of X-23 was revealed to exist in the Age of Apocalypse, going by the name Kirika. She was found in one of Mister Sinister's labs after it was liberated by Magneto. At the end of the miniseries, it was revealed that she was the daughter of Weapon X (Wolverine) and Mariko Yashida. Unlike her Earth-616 counterpart, she has three claws on her hands; the metal was grafted on by Magneto, and he did so upon her request.
Marvel Team-Up: League of Losers
X-23 features in an arc of Robert Kirkman's Marvel Team-Up (vol. 3), featuring a group of C-list heroes dubbed "The League of Losers". A group of heroes including X-23, Darkhawk, Dagger, Araña, Gravity, Sleepwalker, Speedball, and Terror (although Araña dies along the way) go to the future to prevent the villain Chronok from stealing Reed Richards' time machine; Chronok came to the present after already having killed all of Marvel's major heroes.
It is revealed Chronok is from the same time period as Kirkman's Mutant 2099; the group stays with him and his mentor Reed Richards to wait for Chronok, and during this time X-23 sparks a relationship with Gravity. They defeat Chronok, but at the end of the story, Richards reveals they cannot go back to their present, due to time travel and alternate timelines. The group decides to stay in the future, satisfied with the impact they made, however unnoticed. Mutant 2099 suggests reforming the Avengers or the "Fantastic Nine".
In other media
- X-23 first appeared in X-Men: Evolution episode number 41 (titled "X-23"), where she was voiced by Andrea Libman in Episode "X23" and by Britt Irvin in Episode "Target X". Wolverine discovered through S.H.I.E.L.D. that Dr. Deborah Risman, working for HYDRA, had created a female clone of him. The clone possessed two retractable claws in each hand (instead of three like Wolverine) and one similarly retractable claw in each foot (something Wolverine lacks). The clone was identified only by the codename X-23 — the first success after 22 failures. Denied the life of a normal child, X-23 was lonely and violent. She had almost no companions and had been under observation her entire life. She had to spend most of her time training to hone her skills. When she was 12, her entire skeleton was infused with adamantium.
Upon learning about her genetic origins and raiding a S.H.I.E.L.D. facility to get information about his whereabouts, X-23 angrily decided to get revenge on Wolverine, whom she held responsible for her creation. She invaded the X-Mansion and handily defeated the other X-Men and New Mutants inside. When Wolverine confronted her, he calmed her by pointing out that he knew what she was going through and that he is the closest thing to family she has, and instead of turning her over to S.H.I.E.L.D. like Nick Fury wanted, he let her go.
Later, Wolverine would encounter X-23 again, on the run from Hydra's agents as well as S.H.I.E.L.D. She allowed herself and Wolverine to be captured, with the intention of using this as a way into Hydra's mobile HQ. She succeeded in destroying the craft, apparently perishing in the act, but Wolverine catches a scent, a hint to him that she was still alive and he is right when X-23 is seen on a rock peak and jumps down. In the final episode of X-Men: Evolution, X-23 was briefly shown as a future member of the X-Men in a vision of Professor Xavier.
- X-23 appears in the Season 1 episode "Stolen Lives" of Wolverine and the X-Men. She wanted to fight Wolverine, but Professor Thornton tells her that she will fight Wolverine another time as they escape. She also appears in Episodes 25-26 in the future as four cloned girls, fighting alongside Wolverine to help Professor X against the Sentinels. Wolverine apparently found them frozen in a Weapon X facility. X-23 has no dialogue in "Stolen Lives", but in the later episodes she is voiced by Tara Strong.
- X-23 was briefly mentioned in The Super Hero Squad Show episode "Double Negation at the World's End!". She later made a non-speaking appearance in the episode "Too Many Wolverines!".
- In Hulk vs. Wolverine, X-23 appears as an infant in cameo among hundreds of clones in the Weapon X research facility. This film is later linked to the television series Wolverine and the X-Men, through both a second battle between Wolverine and the Hulk which references this film, as well as the eventual appearance of X-23.
- X-23 appears in the Game Boy Advance version of X-Men: The Official Game as a boss. She appears in the Alkali Lake facility and runs into the X-Men in the same room in which Wolverine and Lady Deathstrike dueled in the feature film X2. This version of X-23 has no memory of her past and is there trying to remember who she is. She mistakes the X-Men's intentions of trying to help as trying to kidnap her. After she is defeated, Wolverine declares that X-23 will be fine on her own, and they part ways friendly. It is unknown if this version of X-23 has just her claws imbued with adamantium, or changed to have her entire skeleton laced, similar to Lady Deathstrike.
- X-23 appears in the crossover fighting games Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds and Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 as a playable character. Tara Strong reprises her role as the voiceover for her character in these games.
- X-23 appears as an unlockable character in Marvel: Avengers Alliance.
- Several X-23 cards are featured in Marvel: War of Heroes, a trading card RPG for mobile devices. The "X-23" and "[Cloned Eliminator] X-23" cards incorrectly place her in the villain faction, but the newer "[Weapon] X-23" correctly classifies her as a super hero.
- X-23 makes a minor appearance in the artwork of Wolverine's table in Marvel Pinball in Pinball FX 2.
- X-23: Innocence Lost (X-23 vol. 1 #1-6)
- X-23: Target X (X-23: Target X #1-6)
- NYX: Wannabe (NYX vol. 1 #1-7)
- Mighty Marvel: Women of Marvel (X-23 and the unrelated Firestar, Lady Deadpool, Namora, Valkyrie, Rescue, Sif, Spitfire, Galacta, Women of Marvel #1-2)
- X-23 Vol. 1: The Killing Dream (X-23 vol. 2 #1-6 and material from All-New Wolverine Saga)
- Daken/X-23: Collision (X-23 vol. 2 #7-9, Daken: Dark Wolverine #5-9 and material from Wolverine: Road To Hell)
- X-23 Vol. 2: Chaos Theory (X-23 vol. 2 #10-16)
- X-23 Vol. 3: Don't Look Back (X-23 vol. 2 #17-21)
- "Marvel Cancels X-23". Comic Vine. 2011-11-15. Retrieved 2012-05-18.
- Sunu, Steve (13 September 2012). "Hopeless and Walker Populate "Avengers Arena" For Marvel NOW!". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved 13 September 2012.
- All-New X-Men #19 (released November, 2013)
- X-23: Innocence Lost
- Uncanny X-Men #450
- Uncanny X-Men #451
- New X-Men vol.2 #20
- X-Men (vol. 2) #165
- Marvel Team-Up (vol. 3) #5
- Marvel Team-Up (vol. 3) #6
- X-Force v3 01 (2008)
- Cable #15 (2009)
- X-Force #16 (2009)
- X-Force (vol. 3) #17
- X-Force (vol. 3) #18
- X-Force (vol. 3) #19
- X-Force (vol. 3) #20
- "FIRST LOOK: X-23 One Shot". Replay.waybackmachine.org. 2010-01-04. Retrieved 2012-05-18.
- Wolverine: The Road To Hell #1
- X-23 #1
- X-23 #2
- X-23 #3
- X-23 #4-6
- X-23 (vol. 3) #10
- X-23 (vol. 3) #11
- X-23 (vol. 3) #12
- X-23 #13
- X-23 #14
- X-23 #16
- X-23 #17
- X-23 #18
- X-23 #19
- X-Men: Regenesis #1
- X-23 #20
- "X-23 Steps Away From the X-MEN and Towards AVENGERS ACADEMY | Marjorie Liu | Wolverine | Marvel Comics". Newsarama.com. Retrieved 2012-05-18.
- Avengers Academy #23
- Avengers Academy Vol.1 #29
- Avengers Academy Vol.1 #31
- Avengers Academy Vol.1 #37
- Avengers Academy Vol.1 #39
- Avengers Arena #1
- Avengers Arena #4
- Avengers Arena #8
- Avengers Arena #10
- Avengers Arena #14
- Avengers Arena #15
- Avengers Arena #17
- Avengers Arena #18
- All-New X-Men #19
- All-New X-Men #20
- All-New X-Men #22
- All-New X-Men #26
- All-New X-Men #27
- X-23: Target X
- NYX #3
- New X-Men Vol.2 #43
- New X-Men #20
- Venom #13.1 (2012)
- X-Men: The End #3
- X-Men: Age of Apocalypse #1
- X-Men: Age of Apocalypse #2-5
- X-Men: Age of Apocalypse #6
- Uncanny X-Force #12-13
- Marvel Team-Up #16-18
- Marvel Team-Up #125
- Jgonzo. "TGS 2010: Marvel Vs. Capcom 3: X-23 and Tron Bonne Enter the Battle", Jgonzo's Capcom-Unity Blog, 16 September 2010.
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