This April, 'X-Factor' Returns
Leah Williams and David Baldeón team up to unite the legendary mutant squad!
MUTANTS HAVE CONQUERED DEATH!
By the grace of The Five, the resurrection protocols can bring back any fallen mutant. But such a huge enterprise isn’t without its problems and complications… When a mutant dies, X–Factor is there to investigate how and why to keep the rules of reincarnation.
In an exclusive interview with Polygon, Williams disclosed her thought process behind the team's makeup. "I tend to think of a team’s overall dynamic first. I did make a beeline for Northstar because I got deeply, wretchedly attached to both he and Blob during X-TREMISTS. Blob will feature prominently in X-FACTOR as well, but his new role (thanks to Ben Percy and Josh Cassara!) is perfect, and gives Freddy a bigger path threading through all our books...
"Eye-Boy was a given, both in having x-ray vision and fulfilling the requisite team role as “baby.” I knew we’d need a team telepath, and Rachel Grey was my top pick. She’s fascinatingly under-utilized yet over-powered as a character and carries so, so much incredible lore and untapped potential. She’s our team’s James Dean. Then I snapped up Prodigy because there’s so much more to explore with his character in Krakoa, as well—and his powers make him an investigative Swiss Army Knife. Then I was like “ok this team still needs a f*cky thot enforcer” and scared the crap out of Jordan by asking for Maggott, so we went with Daken instead because there’s a lot of interesting story-mining to do with the Snikt family.
"Polaris was the last variable and the hardest for me to wrap my head around. I tend to only feel comfortable writing characters I already love, but for the longest time Polaris honestly wasn’t someone I connected with that deeply. But she’s a legacy character, an actual X-Factor alumnus, and has so much character work that desperately needs doing; and I didn’t want to omit her just because I was afraid to tackle her story. So I ended up reaching out to two pals, Jess Hernandez and Allison Senecal, who are huge Lorna fans. I wanted to see her through their eyes—I needed to. I’m lucky that I do have friends I can randomly approach with questions like “Hey, would you mind telling me about why you love Polaris?” and they won’t get overly curious about why. (I’m sure they both knew why I was asking, but were too polite to say anything.) Allison helped me see Polaris and Havok’s relationship in a new light, and Jess just open-palm slammed Lorna right into heart. I am so much more protective of her now than I was before these conversations, and deeply appreciative to them both for giving me the right lens to look through. I texted Jordan about my mind changing immediately. She absolutely belongs with us.
"She’s not team leader, which may rub people the wrong way at first but it’s a decision she makes for story reasons, and I promise it’s because we’re just making sure she has the available bandwidth for so, so much more growth. After I turned in X-FACTOR #1’s script, Jordan realized it first: Northstar may be the team leader, but Polaris is the north star. For everything."
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