Published March 8, 2024

Meet Lila Cheney, the Intergalactic Mutant Rock Star

Who is Lila Cheney? Discover more about this mutant rock star, who tours the galaxy and occasionally steps in to help the X-Men.

The X-Men's roster includes dozens of the world's most powerful people, but some of the Marvel Universe's brightest mutant stars never truly joined the team. Where the X-Men have saved the world from countless threats, Lila Cheney—an intergalactic mutant rock star—has fought for mutant rights in her own way. 

As one of the most famous mutants in the Marvel Universe, Lila stands as a pillar of mutant culture thanks to her cosmic teleporting powers, which have carried her around the galaxy. As a longtime ally of the X-Men, Lila has also factored into several milestone mutant moments, even if she has always kept one foot in the stars.

Now, let's take a closer look at Lila Cheney and how this teleporting mutant popstar bounced around X-Men history. We'll also break down how she stepped up in the Krakoan Era, just as she returns in MS. MARVEL THE MUTANT MENACE (2024) #1 by Iman Vellani, Sabir Pirzada, Scott Godlewski, Erick Arciniega, and VC's Joe Caramagna.


Lila Cheney debuted as an intergalactic rock star in NEW MUTANTS ANNUAL (1984) #1 by Chris Claremont and Bob McLeod. While growing up in England, a young Lila used her developing teleportation powers to travel around the universe, and an alien named Spyder eventually captured her. After escaping, Lila became a master thief and launched a successful music career. 

As part of a complex plot to steal Earth and sell it to aliens, Lila went on a world tour, where an infatuated Cannonball and the other New Mutants saved her from an alien assassin. After Lila teleported Cannonball to her idyllic cosmic home in a Dyson sphere, the New Mutants stopped the aliens who were trying to kill her and subjugate Earth.

Lila began dating Cannonball, leading her to become more ingrained in the world of the New Mutants and the X-Men. She worked on music with Dazzler, the X-Men's resident mutant popstar, and found a bodyguard in Guido Carosella, who would become the mutant hero Strong Guy. When Cannonball invited her to meet his family, Lila befriended his mother in NEW MUTANTS (1983) #42 by Chris Claremont and Butch Guice

After helping the New Mutants with another alien threat, Lila was eventually captured by Spyder again. When the New Mutants teamed up with the alien Gosamyr to rescue Lila, Spyder woke up the captive members of Gosamyr's family, who had transformed into galaxy-destroying monsters. To stop Gosamyr's family from annihilating a star system, Lila teleported them into a star and seemingly died in the process in NEW MUTANTS (1983) #70 by Louise Simonson and Terry Shoemaker.


Lila Cheney went on several adventures with the primary X-Men team after she resurfaced in UNCANNY X-MEN (1963) #269 by Chris Claremont and Jim Lee. When Professor X and the Shi'ar leader Lilandra were captured and replaced by shapeshifting alien Warskrulls, Deathbird—Lilandra's sister—had Lila recruit the X-Men to save their founder. After some confusion over Deathbird's true loyalties, Lila helped the X-Men take on the Warskrulls posing as their friends and saved the Shi'ar Empire in UNCANNY X-MEN (1963) #276-277 by Claremont and Lee. 

After returning to Earth, Lila reunited with an amnesiac Dazzler and Longshot in X-MEN (1991) #5 by John Byrne and Jim Lee. When Spiral attacked them, Lila teleported the group to Mojoworld, thanks to the manipulations of the interdimensional tyrant Mojo. An attempt at rebellion against Mojo landed Lila and Longshot in the media-obsessed villain's captivity. He forced them to fight Longshot in his version of The Wizard of Oz, but with help from Dazzler, Longshot ultimately took down the villain. Meanwhile, Lila transported the mutant heroes back to Earth. 

Lila also played a role at the start of the X-CUTIONER'S SONG crossover epic in UNCANNY X-MEN (1963) #294 by Scott Lobdell and Brandon Peterson. At a concert to promote peaceful mutant and human coexistence, Lila introduced Xavier to her audience. Posing as Cable, Stryfe shot and nearly killed Xavier onstage.


After her adventures with the X-Men, Lila Cheney reconnected with Cannonball and Strong Guy, two of her closest associates on their respective mutant teams. While Lila was away, Cannonball had started dating his teammate Boom-Boom and joined X-Force; Lila gave Boom-Boom and Cannonball's relationship her blessing, adding that she was too busy to date and Cannonball was too young for her in X-FORCE (1991) #19 by Fabian Nicieza and Greg Capullo

As Cannonball took command over X-Force, Lila helped the team set up their new base in Camp Verde, Arizona. After a brief battle with War Machine and S.H.I.E.L.D., Lila also helped X-Force salvage technology from Graymalkin, the abandoned space station once operated by Cable, their former leader. 

As Lila prepared to go back on tour across the galaxy, she asked Strong Guy to be her bodyguard again, but he turned her down due to his obligations for X-Factor, a government-sanctioned mutant team. After Lila stole a musical relic called the Harmonium to keep it safe during a war, the K'Lanti aliens threatened to destroy Earth unless she returned it. Since the relic had been stolen from her, Lila teamed up with Strong Guy and X-Factor to recover it from a cosmic junk dealer. 

Although Lila returned the Harmonium, the aliens activated a bomb that Strong Guy absorbed in X-FACTOR (1986) #111 by John Francis Moore, Todd DeZago, and Jan Duursema. That feat sent Strong Guy into a life-threatening coma, but he eventually recovered and reunited with Lila. He stayed by her side for the rest of her intergalactic tour.


Lila and Strong Guy eventually went their separate ways and Lila returned to Earth, where she rekindled her relationship with Cannonball after he attended one of her concerts in X-TREME X-MEN (2001) #24 by Chris Claremont and Salvador Larroca. While dating Lila, Cannonball joined Storm's X-Men team and stopped a mutant-hating bomber from attacking one of Lila's shows. 

After stepping out of the spotlight briefly, Lila split up with Cannonball again. She resurfaced as part of a group of British mutants assembled by Legion to curb anti-mutant sentiment in the United Kingdom in X-MEN: LEGACY (2012) #13 by Simon Spurrier and Tan Eng Huat.  

While working on new music, Lila teleported to Aldana, a rhyming planet she visited as a child. During her time there, she had been engaged to Prince Yan, and the planet's royal family wanted her to honor that engagement in CAPTAIN MARVEL (2014) #9 by Kelly Sue DeConnick and David López. With an assist from Captain Marvel, Lila was able to avoid her marriage obligations by having Tic, Captain Marvel's alien friend, marry Prince Yan in her place.


When the mutants of Earth came together to form the mutant nation Krakoa, Lila Cheney joined her old friends on Earth. Along with fellow musicians Dazzler and Shark-Girl, Lila regularly performed on the island nation. 

When Abigail Brand formed a new incarnation of the cosmic defense force S.W.O.R.D., she recruited Lila to the S.W.O.R.D. Teleport Team, a group of teleporters who pooled their powers to travel to the far reaches of existence, in S.W.O.R.D. (2020) #1 by Al Ewing and Valerio Schiti. To stop Dormammu during "The Last Annihilation," Cable brought Lila onto a small team in CABLE: RELOADED (2021) #1 by Ewing and Bob Quinn. Alongside Cannonball and Boom-Boom, Lila helped Cable retrieve a massive weapon from Breakworld and teleported it back to his base on Arakko

To promote some new music, Lila also appeared on a celebrity reality TV show, So I'm Dating a Pop Star, in X-MEN UNLIMITED INFINITY COMIC (2021) #28 by Jason Loo and EJ Su. While disguised as a zookeeper, Lila was set up on several dates for the show. However, one of her dates was a member of the Friends of Humanity, a mutant-hating group. Enraged by the mutants he saw around him, he and a few other Friends of Humanity members attacked Lila, who promptly teleported the mutant-haters to an alien world.

When the massive anti-mutant organization Orchis launched a devastating assault on Krakoa and the world's mutants, the X-Men thought that Sentinels killed Lila. However, she resurfaced in MS. MARVEL: THE MUTANT MENACE (2024) #1. After finding Kamala Khan in Jersey City, Lila teleported the young hero away from a fight with Hordeculture to her concert in deep space. With the X-Men's newest recruit by her side, Lila Cheney is ready to keep shining as one of the universe's brightest stars.

Catch Lila Cheney's new tour in MS. MARVEL: THE MUTANT MENACE #1, now on sale!

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