Roberto da Costa (Sunspot)

SunspotToday, another new entry seen in X-Men: Days of Future Past trailer: Brazilian mutant Sunspot, portrayed by Adan Canto. Despite his name appeared on William Stryker‘s list of mutants in X2: X-Men United, this marks the first live action appearance of the character. In the movie, he’ll appear in the future setting as one of the young survivors of the mutant massacre brought on by the Sentinels, entering in the rogue team gathered around Professor X and Magneto in a last, desperate attempt for survival. It’s unknown if his powers will have the same nature and extent of his comicbook counterpart, but it’s at least certain that his social status will be somewhat different from the one of a respected CEO… Anyway, let’s see together who Sunspot is in the comics.

Sunspot’s real name is Roberto da Costa, he was born in Rio de Janeiro from wealthy Afro-Brazilian businessman Emmanuel da Costa and his wife, the archaeologist Nina. He lived the normal life of a rich, spoiled kid in Rio, growing up with quite a short temper and an impulsive attitude, mainly caused by the authoritative education of Emmanuel. Spurred on by his tyrannical father, he started playing soccer, proving to be quite good at it. When he was fourteen years old, his mutant powers manifested for the first time, in quite a traumatic way for the boy: Roberto was playing soccer with his school team, the Thunderbolts, when he was purposely tackled by Keller, a racist guy from the rival team, the Dynamos. Roberto, who surely wasn’t the turn-the-other-cheek guy, went after him and tackled him down in return. A brawl started, and, while Keller was beating him badly, Roberto first manifested his superhumansunspotcomics1 strength: his clothes and skin turned black for a moment, and he threw the attacker far away without even realizing it. Shocked and afraid, da Costa asked for help, but everyone, players and spectators, ran away in terror. Only Juliana Sandoval, Roberto’s girlfriend, stayed at his side, refusing to abandon him. A few days later, however, the news of his “show” in the stadium had reached Donald Pierce, the former White Bishop from the Hellfire Club. Pearce was leading a personal crusade, trying to kill any mutant he could find in retaliation for his banning, and sent his Reavers to kill the boy. Failing to even hurt him, the Reavers ended up kidnapping Juliana instead, and flew, leaving an ultimatum to Roberto. In the meanwhile, telepath Charles Xavier had learnt of Pierce’s plan, and had sent his friend Moira McTaggart and the young mutants Karma and Psyche to help the Brazilian boy. The four of them went after Pearce, but, when Roberto tried to give himself up in exchange of Juliana, the Reavers revealed they intended to kill them both. During the following battle, the girl intercepted a bullet aimed to her Bobby, and she died in his place. Overwhelmed with grief and guilt, da Costa accepted to join Xavier, Karma, Psyche and another young mutant named Wolfsbane to hunt down Pearce.

The four teens tracked down Pearce, and battled against Cannonball, another young mutant he had manipulated into serving him. Cannonball was defeated, and he was shown the true nature of his master. Xavier then offered Karma, Psyche, Wolfsbane, Cannonball and Bobby, now calling himself Sunspot, to enter a new junior tem of the X-Men, the New Mutants, and to be trained in the use of their newfound powers. After a first hesitation, the five teenagers accepted the offer, and moved to the X-Mansion. In here, they trained into the Danger Room, becoming sunspotcomics2more and more skillful with the respective powers. Despite being at first considered just as students, they started to act also on the field, becoming superheroes just like the older X-Men. Sunspot’s discovered that his powers weren’t limited to super strength only: he was able to absorb solar energy and to convert it in a vast array of abilities, that made him one of the most powerful young mutants in the school. He soon befriended Cannonball, and the two of them became best buddies in no time. In the meanwhile, Emmanuel had become the new White Rook in the Hellfire Club, and when he was killed by Gideon (one of the Externals), Bobby inherited his fortune, and became the new CEO of Da Costa International. With the New Mutants, he lived quite a number of adventures: he turned into a monster after being drugged and battled the X-Man Colossus to an even, until he was ultimately cured by Magik; he helped in saving Professor X when it was revealed that he had founded the New Mutants just to grant the Brood Queen who had planted an egg into his brain new embryos; he travelled to Asgard, where he befriended the Warriors Three by succeeding in the “impossible” task of lifting Volstagg the Voluminous over his head. He left the New Mutants for a while and joined X-Force, and later he was tricked by Selene into joining her version of the Hellfire Club. Back to the New Mutants, he ended up being a member of the Avengers, in a last attempt thought by Tony Stark to have the mutants not feared by normal people anymore.

Roberto da Costa is a short-tempered and impulsive young man, but also an idealistic hero who fights for what he believes to be right, despite the many difficulties in doing so. As Sunspot, his powers consisted at first in absorption and storage of solar energy, then converted into super strength and durability (but not invulnerability). After the experimentations run by Gideon, Bobby was able to absorb other forms of energy (such as light and heat), and to convert them into quite a variety of powers: flight, superhuman physical attributes (this time, also invulnerability), regeneration, energy manipulation and generation (mainly through energy blasts), fire immunity and manipulation, thermokinesis, photokinesis, radiation immunity and manipulation, and probably many others, since his ability is still evolving due to the External’s intervention. Powerful but good-hearted, waspish but loyal to his values and friends, Sunspot is a mutant who firmly believes in Xavier’s dream, and keeps fighting for it despite the adversities.

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3 Comments

  1. […] Under Mojo’s orders, Psylocke kidnapped also Rahne “Wolfsbane” Sinclair and Bob “Sunspot” D’Acosta, two teenagers members of the New Mutants. The other New Mutants went to the rescue, and during […]

  2. […] lab: Wayne forced Cindy to help him, and the “two” of them battled Magik and Sunspot, until the latters managed to force Wayne back to David’s subconscious. Legion was now back […]

  3. […] where mutants are hunted down and nearly exterminated…and he’s an alternate version of Bobby “Sunspot” da Costa, someone we met in another dystopian future in the movie universe. Let’s see […]


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