Laura Kinney (X-23)

x23filmApparently we’ll solve the mystery on what Essex Corporation wanted to do with the Weapon X‘s blood they collected at the end of X-Men: Apocalypse, and the answer is right here in Logan‘s first trailer: X-23, the little girl Wolverine is assigned to protect by Professor X. Real name (sort of) Laura Kinney, the young mutant will be portrayed by Dafne Keen, and she’ll be quite a turning point in Wolverine’s life: Professor X says she’s “very similar” to the titular hero, and that’s an understatement, considering she’s a clone of the Canadian mutant. This said, Wolverine is the closest thing she has to a father. Why she’s hunted down by the Reavers or what her presence will mean on the long term for the other mutants remain to be seen, in the meanwhile we can always take a look at the original one.

Everything began when The Facility, a secret and shady organization, began their efforts to replicate the original Weapon X Project, that had succesfully created a super-soldier by bonding the skeleton of a mutant, Logan, with indestructible Adamantium. The leader of the project, Martin Sutter, was unable to make any subject survive the experience, so he hired geneticist Sarah Kinney to create a functional clone of the original Weapon X. The only DNA sample they possessed of the super-soldier, however, was damaged, and after twenty-two attempts it was clear that the Y chromosome was impossible to recreate; Kinney proposed to create a female clone of Weapon X, but both Sutter and his assistant and protégé Zander Rice opposed the idea. Kinney didn’t listen to her superiors and secretly create a female clone…the first that actually survived, the twenty-third experiment: X-23. Martin Sutter, seeing the succesful result, allowed Kinney to proceed, but since the woman had disobeyed a direct order, he punished her forcing her to act as a surrogate mother to the feral clone. The baby clone was raised in captivity, and trained to be a human weapon: Sarah Kinney did her best to make the girl stay human, but everytime she thought she had achieved something, the baby x23comics1showed a feral and murderous character; this was because of Zander Rice, who kept torturing X-23 whom she saw as a copy of Wolverine, the man who had killed his father. Rice exposed the girl to radiation poisoning when she was only seven to forcibly activate her X-Gene, and he imbued her claws with Adamantium. There were a few people that treated X-23 nicely, and one of them was one of her teachers: Rice tested on him the trigger scent, a chemical compound meant to trigger an uncontrollable berserker rage in X-23; the experiment succeeded, and the girl lost control, killing her teacher and emerging heart-broken from her blind rage. Deemed ready for an on-field test, X-23 was sent around the world in several missions, killing a variety of targets; every mission was more difficult than the previous one, in an attempt from Rice to kill her, but she always survived and came back to the base. Then, finally, Zander Rice received from Sutter the leadership of the X-23 program.

As X-23’s first mission under Rice, she was ordered to kill Sutter and his family. Back to the base, a surprise was awaiting for her: Rice had created a number of female clones of Weapon X, and he wanted to use them as a private army. Sarah Kinney ordered X-23 to kill Rice and destroy the new clones, before escaping together; X-23 did as she was told, but Zander Rice had exposed Kinney to the trigger scent, thus forcing a thirteen-years old X-23 to kill her “mother”. In her last living moment, Kinney named X-23 “Laura”, in a last effort to make her human. Laura moved to San Francisco, obtaining hospitality from Debbie, Sarah’s sister. Some Facility’s agents tracked her at her aunt’s home, and she was forced to flee, taking to safety both Debbie and her daughter Megan. Knowing that the Facility would have never let her go, Laura decided to finally control them man responsible for her existence in the first place: Wolverine. She tracked the mutant down to Xavier’s Mansion and she attacked him, even defeating him: instead of killing him, she revealed to him who she was and what she was doing there…but he already knew, as Sarah Kinney had sent a letter to him time before. Still surprised, X-23 realised she was surrounded by a x23comics2squad of S.H.I.E.L.D. agents led by Captain America, arrived to arrest her for the numerous murders she had committed. Taken to a S.H.I.E.L.D. facility, the girl was interrogated by lawyer Matt Murdock, who deemed her innocent; Captain America wanted her to atone for the many killings, but he decided to free her, so that S.H.I.E.L.D. couldn’t use her as a living weapon as well. Living in the streets of New York, Laura ended up becoming a prostitute, but her wandering eventually brought her to cross Wolverine’s path once again two years later. Even if she still attacked him on sight, Wolverine managed to calm her down, and after they shared an adventure with the X-Men, he convinced her to follow him to Xavier’s Mansion, where she was enrolled in the New Charles Xavier School. Maybe, it was really time for her to be the human girl her mother wanted her to be, rather than the feral beast they had turned her into.

Laura Kinney is, to say the least, a confused girl: trained to be a living weapon, living as a feral beast, she still has to fully understand the rules of civil cohabitation, and she mostly relies on her instinct even in every-day life situations. Violent and distristful, but instinctively protective towards the ones she loves, she reacts as a wild animal still to be tamed. As X-23, she possesses Wolverine’s healing factor, that allows her to heal from most injuries, to be immune from any disease and poisoning, and to age very slowly; she also possesses rectractable claws, two in the hands and one in the feet, covered in indestructible Adamantium; she possesses enhanced senses, that backfires on her by forcing her to attack anybody she feels to be a threat, a feeling that can be manipulated with the trigger scent. Trained to be a living weapon, she’s an accomplished martial artist, a skilled spy who knows several languages, an infallible tracker, and even an expert in the use of long-ranged weaponry. Born to kill, X-23 struggles to make her life something more than a series of reponses to hostile stimuli, and to become something more than the living weapon she’s been designed to be: a person.

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5 Comments

  1. […] Laura Kinney (X-23) […]

  2. […] Laura Kinney (X-23) […]

  3. […] Transigen and that he’ll have quite a big role in the origins and destiny of young Laura. His comicbook counterpart has definitely something to do with the girl, but he’s probably […]

  4. […] have much of a role in the film, as he’s one of the unfortunate cyborgs who try to capture Laura in Logan‘s desert house, but get dismembered as a result. In the comics, of course, […]

  5. […] read in his presence the seeds for a future X-Force movie. When Logan finally manages to bring Laura to the coordinates she’d given to him, he finds out she’s actually right in believing […]


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