Is the way mutant power manifest reactionary?

Posted by Gold Dust Boi (516 posts) - - Show Bio

Ever notice that some powers manifest in just the exact right way to save or fix a situation?  Even though mutant powers are something that they are born with, they always seem to have just the right manifestation to save the day.   
 
Take Cannonball for example.  What if he never got trapped in that mine shaft?  In that exact moment he need a cannonball or a wrecking ball or something destructive with forward momentum to save his own life so he became a human cannonball.  However we've now seen in later year that that's not the extent of his power...what if he was in a collapsing building and had tons of debris falling on top of him? Would his power have activated then in the effect of a forcefield (which we now know he can do)?  Or what if Sam Guthrie wasn't the good upstanding person he is and instead got into a drunken fight with someone much larger then him?  Could his power have first manifested in blast field powered punch to save himself in the fight?  These are all powers that he is now shown to have so I would think his powers could easily have activated in those ways first under the right conditions.  Maybe he could only cannonball at first because that's the form his power first catalyzed in so he got stuck (much like mental blocks self-imposed by Rogue's powers and maybe Cyclops' but I don't know that we are sure about that yet).
 
Another good example may be Karma and her twin brother.  We never saw much of Tran but Shan has often been noted for having such a very specific telepathic ability.  Well when it first manifested it was in a situation where she needed to control somebody to save her brother...so that's how her power manifested.  And since we are talking about psionic twins, its not such a stretch to think they had some link that caused his powers to react the same as her at that moment.  Even with Jean Grey, her abilities first manifested to connect to her dying friend's mind and from then on her telepathic powers always seemed to have a very empathic feel to them, unlike Psylocke's colder more clinical seeming TP powers.  Other psychics who maybe had no traumatic or specific event happen, such as Professor X, seem to have more general and well rounded powers with less specific features to them.
 
Even Dazzler to some extent shows evidence of this reactionary power pattern.  One could argue that BECAUSE her powers need sound to create light, shes automatically a good singer (much like Banshee's exceptional hearing), but what if its the other way around?   She grew up always being a good singer and wanting to perform so her powers kicked in while singing onstage at a high school dance the lights on her so she started glowing and then she needed to blind the audience to protect herself.  What if she was just born to convert energy from one form to another but based on the situation when it kicked it, her body adapted to the sound = light combo.  
 
This of course don't necessarily work in all cases.  Some mutants have powers that they are just born with no matter what (for example claws, wings, or blue skin), but I think some mutants aren't born with a specific powers, just the potential for a type of ability.  With this in mind, who knows if Illyana's life might have gone differently if her teleportation potential had activated somewhere where the link to Limbo was less potent?  Maybe she wouldn't have been connected to stepping disc and she would have opened a different type of portal like Ariel or Blink.  

#1 Posted by utotheg38 (18883 posts) - - Show Bio

Dat was a dope article dawg.

#2 Posted by Gold Dust Boi (516 posts) - - Show Bio

Thank you very much! :)

#3 Posted by cattlebattle (13188 posts) - - Show Bio
@Gold Dust Boi said:
Thank you very much! :)
I don't know how long you have been reading X-Related titles, and no disrespect intended, but I thought this was a well known fact, there used to be a website called Mutanthigh.com that had an article on it (I wouldn't expect anyone to know that )..as well I think it's been adressed in the books
 
Nightcrawler teleporting out of danger from a mob
Colossus stopping a tractor
Cyclops blasting to slow descent
#4 Posted by Gold Dust Boi (516 posts) - - Show Bio
@cattlebattle: I am sure its been discussed at length but I don't know that its ever been really said or discussed in the comics (many with a small handful of exceptions).  If you can find a link to that article I'd love to read it (I just tried to find it but not sure what to look for).  

I don't think Nightcrawler is a good example because multiple members of his family have teleporting and Darkforce related abilities so he seemed to me like his powers were pretty predetermined.  
 
And Colossus I actually considered for that exact reason but I looked it up and that day with the tractor was not the first time his powers manifested, I think it was just the first time other people saw it happen.
 
You could definitely make a case for Cyclops, I also considered putting him in more of the article, since his hands weren't free while him and Alex fell from the sky so his eyes were all he had. 
#5 Posted by cattlebattle (13188 posts) - - Show Bio
@Gold Dust Boi said:
@cattlebattle: I am sure its been discussed at length but I don't know that its ever been really said or discussed in the comics (many with a small handful of exceptions).  If you can find a link to that article I'd love to read it (I just tried to find it but not sure what to look for).   I don't think Nightcrawler is a good example because multiple members of his family have teleporting and Darkforce related abilities so he seemed to me like his powers were pretty predetermined.    And Colossus I actually considered for that exact reason but I looked it up and that day with the tractor was not the first time his powers manifested, I think it was just the first time other people saw it happen.  You could definitely make a case for Cyclops, I also considered putting him in more of the article, since his hands weren't free while him and Alex fell from the sky so his eyes were all he had. 
That site is down for some reason....too bad, it was very informative
 
Yes,but that stuff was retconned into Nightcrawlers past, originally he manifested teleporting while escaping an angry mob, Colossus was also retconned originally that's the first time he manifested....the tractor incident
 
Storm also originally manifested by stopping a hurricane from wiping out her village or something like that
 
There are plenty of mutants that just manifested for no reason, but there is a lot that had it happen as a reaction to save them from a life threatening situation
#6 Posted by desperado_ (314 posts) - - Show Bio
@utotheg38 said:
Dat was a dope article dawg.
WORD.
#7 Posted by Gold Dust Boi (516 posts) - - Show Bio
@cattlebattle:  Yes true but what I am really driving at isn't just the situation causing manifestation but also determining to an extent HOW the powers manifest.  Yes Peter and Kurt originally manifested in those scenarios but the situation didn't determine or influence the nature of their powers like I feel the situation did for Cannonball or Karma
#8 Posted by cattlebattle (13188 posts) - - Show Bio
@Gold Dust Boi: I didn't write this
 
 
A Theory On Mutant Powers, Mutants, Super-Powered Humans, and the X-Factor  While Marvel has never explicitly said so, the things they *have* said, plus real-world genetics, make it fairly clear in my mind how mutant powers, and all other "altered human" powers work.  All human beings have the genetic potential for superpowers. I assume that there are varied power complexes within each person, and that the number of genes which code for aspects of power and the ways in which they can recombine is truly staggering. While certain combinations do re-occur (telepathy, telepathy with TK), most powers are unique. Probably you are as likely to have the same potential for power as someone else as you are likely to look just like them.  It is possible, in fact, that most people carry latent complexes for many powers.  When we look at several mutants who manifested under extreme life-threatening stress, we can see that each got a power well-suited to the specific stress:  - Magneto manifested magnetokinesis (the ability to manipulate magnetic   fields as if telekinetically) while being shot at with ferrous bullets.   (NM #49, UXM #274) The fact that the power then went dormant under the   stresses of life in a concentration camp indicates that this is a   high-maintenance power, well-suited to bailing yourself out of   immediate danger but no so good with starvation.  - Amara Aquilla (nee Allison Crestmere?) manifested earth-affinity, to   the degree of being immune to the extreme heat of lava, upon being   flung into a pit of lava.  - Samuel Guthrie manifested his "blasting"-- an ability to fly coupled   with great kinetic output and invulnerability-- in the midst of a cave-in.  Had Sam manifested telepathy under the stress of a cave-in, we wouldn't be seeing him today. On the other hand, if we turn this argument around perhaps these fortuitous manifestations *are* coincidences, as we can't very well see or count the number of mutants who manifest the *wrong* power under life-threatening stress.  In any case. Powers are governed by a lot more than one gene. A mutation as extensive as Magneto's, for instance, involves numerous physiological subsystems. Someone like Marrow must have a radically different skeletal structure than human. Even simple telepathy probably requires massive alterations to the brain.  However, the genes for the *powers* are found in almost every homo sapiens (this includes the subspecies Inhumans, Atlanteans, Eternals, and others.) What is lacking in 99% of homo sapiens sapiens is an *activator*. The genes for the powers do not achieve expression without an activator.  Let me give two examples. We have 99% of our genome in common with chimps. What differs between us and chimps is almost all regulatory genes, determining when specific genes turn on or turn off.  But can just one gene produce a radical difference? Certainly it can. Current science believes that the Y chromosome differentiates between men and women largely through the action of one gene or a very small number of genes. Both men aand women have the ability to produce testosterone, and testosterone production in embryoes causes the development of male genitalia. The gene on the Y chromosome activates the production of testosterone.  So the subspecies homo sapiens superior (as it's classified in MU terms) differs from human in terms of *one* gene-- X-factor. It must be one gene, because it arises from spontaneous mutation too often. In fact, very likely it's one base pair removed from the human version. One single molecule changes in the genetic structure of the parent, and the child's latent superpowers are activated.  X-factor must be a dominant allele. The moment it appears, it codes for a mutant. If X-factor was recessive (the way most mutations are), mutants would be much, much rarer (as both parents would have to have spontaneously given rise to X-factor) and most children of mutants would be non-mutants, unless they were from a mutant/mutant pairing, where they would *always* be mutants. This is not how mutant inheritance behaves. We see that two mutants can produce:  - an ordinary human (Graydon Creed) - a mutant of extraordinary power, who first manifests in infancy (Nathan Summers) - a mutant who does not manifest in infancy, who is presumably of power levels expected from parental contributions (Charles Xavier Lehnsherr)  (There have to be other examples of that last, but I can't think of any...)  This implies to me that two copies of X-factor produces an early-manifesting child; one copy simply produces a mutant.  Now, how do we explain:  POLARIS: A "latent mutant" activated to her power by Mesmero and a Magneto robot, it was stated in Polaris' origin story that she would never have become a mutant if not specifically activated. Yet she is a *mutant*, not just a person with superpowers. How do we explain?  Three possibilities:  1. The process Polaris underwent actually mutated her ordinary human allele (we'll call it H-factor, for human) into X-factor. This is really, really dangerous and unlikely. Spot mutations in sex cells cause the children that grow from those cells to be mutants. Spot mutations in somatic (body) cells in non-embryoes cause cancer. The likelihood of *every* cell in Lorna's body being successfully mutated is low.  2. Magnetism is a really high-maintenance power, and requires extreme stress or some other external force to cause it to manifest. If this is true, Lorna was always a mutant, but simply had no powers. This implies that Magneto's late adult manifestation wasn't solely due to retardation of powers caused by deprivation in the camps, but actually the power might have manifested late anyway-- or, without the stressor of that early abortive manifestation, not at all.  3. Lorna doesn't have X-factor, exactly. She has something else, which behaves like A-factor (see below) in its ability to make people manifest powers (that is, it mediates power manifestation in the presence of a chemical or radioactive stressor, but not otherwise) but like X-factor in its alteration of the brain (producing the "mutant brain waves" Cerebro uses.)  ALTERED HUMANS? The Fantastic Four, the Hulk, Spiderman-- all of them got their powers from stressors that should have killed them or done nothing more than made them sick. (There's so little venom in a spider, radioactive or not, that it could not possibly have caused a whole-body mutation in Peter Parker.)  All of them possess A-factor. A-factor is another allele of X-factor's, which mediates the development of power in the presence of a chemical or radioactive stressor. A person with A-factor who is exposed to gamma radiation turns green and gets supwerpowers; those without, die. A stressor such as being about to be shot cannot activate A-factor; only X-factor can activate under the stress of adrenaline. A-factor requires chemical stress or radiation, or both, to activate.  The other difference between A-factor and X-factor is that X-factor has some effect on brain chemistry; an active mutant generates a recognizably different telepathic pattern than an altered human. (Otherwise Cerebro would pick up Spiderman.)  A-factor may mutate into X-factor more easily than H-factor. Certainly Franklin Richards shows all the signs of being a double mutant, despite being the child of two humans. Perhaps A-factor spontaneously mutated into X-factor in the sex cells of *both* Reed and Sue Richards, an occurrence that would be awfully rare for H-factor to do.  So, to reiterate:  - All homo sapiens have genetic complexes which code for superpowers. - Only homo sapiens which possess an activating gene manifest such powers. - X-factor, the activating gene found in all or almost all homo sapiens superior, is a dominant allele. Thus mutants have a somewhat less than 50% chance of producing non-mutant children (somewhat less than 50% because many humans possess spontaneous occurences of X-factor in their sex cells) - X-factor is likely to be a very simple mutation from H-factor, the human version of the allele (which does nothing.) - X-factor causes an alteration to brainwave patterns (detectable via telepathy) and activates power at puberty, or under stress, or both. - Most mutants have one X-factor and one H-factor in their genome. - When mutants have two X-factors (usually coming from two mutant parents), it may cause early manifestation. This may explain pre-pubescent powers such as those exhibited by Franklin Richards, Nathan Summers, Leech and Artie Maddicks, and may also explain gross somatic mutations seen in childhood (Kurt Wagner, Leech, Artie Maddicks.) - A-factor is closely related to X-factor, and may give rise to it more easily than H-factor does. - A-factor does not cause brain chemistry changes. - A-factor requires some sort of chemical or radioactive stressor to activate power.  The distinction between possessors of X-factor and A-factor:  1. X-factor individuals *will* develop a power, almost certainly. A-factor individuals probably won't.  2. X-factor individuals can be singled out by telepathy and technological means. A-factor individuals cannot be so determined.  3. X-factor usually causes manifestation in puberty, resulting in fear and consternation from parents. A-factor manifests in adulthood, and usually in scientists, military people or others who are more likely to be exposed to chemicals or radiation. Thus, A-factor indivudals usually don't develop power until they have social status.  4. For the above reasons, A-factor individuals are classified as human, while X-factor indivudals are not. In fact, genetically they are both as far, or as close, to human as each other.  5. We would expect to see a sex imbalance in manifested A-factor individuals, since the stressors that trigger A-factor manifestations usually involve danger to H-factor individuals (who all humans are assumed to be unless tested otherwise), and men occupy more dangerous jobs than women. We would expect to see no sex imbalance in manifested X-factor individuals. This seems to be borne out by the patterns we see in the MU.  So, there we have my theory. Does any of this mean mutants really are a different species than human? I still don't think so. They're just much more easily distinguishable from humans than "altered humans" who haven't been altered yet are.  
#9 Posted by Gold Dust Boi (516 posts) - - Show Bio
@cattlebattle: Well ok then... :) way to give my blog an inferiority complex... LOL
 
That was actually really interesting, where did you find that? I want to put a link to it on my own blog site.
#10 Posted by cattlebattle (13188 posts) - - Show Bio
@Gold Dust Boi said:
@cattlebattle: Well ok then... :) way to give my blog an inferiority complex... LOL  That was actually really interesting, where did you find that? I want to put a link to it on my own blog site.
I just googled "Mutant Power Manifesting" and it came up, yeah this guy was probably a genetics major and a huge X-Men fan, good read
#11 Posted by PowerHerc (85153 posts) - - Show Bio

It seems to be at times, doesn't it?

#12 Posted by shadow death (605 posts) - - Show Bio

cool article 
 
but mutant powers manifest at times of like great devistation or needs 
somes work as soon as they are born 
some get they're powers to late so they need something to activate them 
 
i really like ur article though

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