Lorna Sally Dane (Polaris)

Another upcoming tv series released the first trailer, and the hype just keeps growing: we’re speaking of The Gifted, directed by Bryan Singer and set in the X-Men‘s universe (albeit in a different timeline, apparently). The series will follow some original characters, the Strucker Family, who will become fugitives as their children turn out to be mutants, hunted down by the government. The family will run into a group of mutant resistance which includes many known faces from the comics, starting with Polaris, portrayed by Emma Dumont. In the trailer, we can see her using her magnetic powers on cops, and struggling to control her rage, thus maybe hinting at the personality problems that have been haunting her in the comics. She seems to be lacking her trademark green hair, but Singer promised to have her don her usual look, so we’ll just have to wait and see… as usual, spending time to take a look at the original Mistress of Magnetism, long awaited to be seen in flesh and blood after her name appeared on William Stryker‘s list in X2: X-Men United.

Lorna Sally Dane was born somewhere in California, the daughter of a pilot named Arnold and of his wife Suzanna. This, however, turned out not to be exactly true, as the woman had had an affair with a handsome stranger, and Lorna was her lover’s daughter. Arnold found this out when the girl was still a kid, and he chose to confront his wife about it while the three of them were travelling on his private plane. The two adults started fighting over the matter, but little Lorna didn’t understand anything of what they were saying, she only wanted them to stop arguing: in panic as her parents kept yelling at each other, the girl unconsciously emitted a strong magnetic pulse, that fried the plane’s circuits and made it crash on the ground. In the following explosion, both Arnold and Suzanna died, and Lorna emerged from the wrecks, protected by a force field, with her hair turned green: she was a mutant, just like her biological father… whom she had also inherited her magnetic powers from. Lorna’s father, having perceived the magnetic pulse, arrived on the scene: he was none others than the mutant terrorist Magneto, and he was investigating the incident with his Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. Upon finding the girl, Magneto realized she was still too young to embrace the life he offered her, and he also believed she wasn’t ready for the enormous power she wielded: he ordered one of his followers, Mastermind, to use his abilities to rewrite Lorna’s memories, so that she believed that her parents had died in a normal plane crash, and that she forgot everything about her powers. Completely unaware of her true nature and origins, Lorna was adopted by Arnold’s sister and by her husband, the Danes, who rose her as if she was their own; with time, she eventually forgot her parents. Feeling different from the other kids because of her hair, Lorna started dying them brown, and she grew up convinced she was a regular human; Mastermind’s powers, besides blocking her memory, also prevented the girl’s mind from accessing the area of the brain that activated her powers, so that her abilities remained latent until she reached her twenties. When she was twenty, in fact, the Danes told her she had been adopted from her mother’s deceased brother, something that resulted in a great emotional stress. Soon after, Lorna found herself mysteriously compelled to travel to San Francisco, following an impulse that actually originated from the evil telepath Mesmero, who was summoning all latent mutants in reach.

Mesmero wasn’t the only one who had found her, however: also Professor X, with Cerebro, had identified her as a mutant, and had sent his X-Men to retrieve her. Lorna was intercepted by Iceman, who broke her trance by making her slip on ice, and introduced her to the other X-Men, informing her of her true nature. Still in shock, Lorna was soon captured by the Demi-Men, Mesmero’s minions, and brought to their master, who activated the woman’s latent powers with his device. As soon as Lorna manifested magnetic powers, Mesmero proved to be impressed, and he even called her the “Queen of Mutants“, but the X-Men soon arrived, wanting to “save” her. Also Magneto arrived, revealing to be the one who had ordered Lorna’s abduction, and that he was the girl’s true father. Lorna couldn’t fight her father, and she let the X-Men nearly be defeated, but Iceman returned with the evidence that both of her parents had died years before in a plane crash: believing Magneto was lying to her, Lorna fought him, and she eventually bested him… revealing “Magneto” to be actually and android double. After that adventure, she chose to follow the X-Men to their school, where Professor X would have helped her to control her powers. During her stay at Westchester, she finally reverted to her true hair color and, while rejecting Iceman’s advances, she started a relationship with Havok instead, whom she had met when he had saved her from a group of Sentinels. When the time came for her to join the X-Men, she tried the super-name Magnetrix, but she quickly dropped it as she didn’t like it at all, and she adopted “Polaris” instead. Neither Polaris nor Havok had full mastership over their highly destructive powers, so they were assigned only easy missions, until she helped the team repel an alien invasion from the Z’Nox. After that, she joined the team in a mission in the Savage Land, where she finally met the true Magneto… who, much to her disappointment, didn’t even know who she was. Polaris came back to the base just in time to be kidnapped by the Secret Empire and used as a power source for their deadly machines, but she was freed when Cyclops, Marvel Girl, Captain America and Falcon defeated the villains. Tired of being a “second rate” X-Man, Polaris left the team with Havok, and moved to Nevada to complete her Master’s Degree in geophysics. Here, however, she met the Hulk, who mistook her for his former lover Jarella and got angry in seeing her with Havok: barely escaping the fight, the two mutants came back to Westchester again to aid their team in an emergency, as Professor X had detected the most powerful mutant ever… that mission, however, would have changed Lorna forever.

Lorna Dane is a strong-willed and determined young woman, a loyal friend and an idealist who dedicates all her life to fight for the peaceful cohabitation of humans and mutants… unfortunately, she’s also subjected to depression and mental illness, and her frail mind often brings her to mental outbursts that put her and the ones around her in danger. As Polaris, she’s an Alpha-Level mutant with the power to manipulate Earth‘s magnetic field itself: she can fly, she can create force-fields, she can manipulate any kind of metal and magnetic field, and she can even revert the planet’s polarity, but the full extent of her powers is yet to be seen, as she can potentially match her father’s ones, but her mental issues always prevent her from reaching her full potential. A fierce warrior and a dedicated peace-builder, Polaris always tries to restrain herself from using her powers to the fullest, wanting to protect her friends from the monster she knows far too well she can become.


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