By Eli LaChance
The folks at Apotheosis Comics and Lounge tried to sugar-coat it. They told me she was happy; that she went to a farm to live with the other canine-like mutants that she’d be better off there but folks, it was a lie. As of Uncanny X-men #16, the mutant known as Wolfsbane is dead.
It’s easy to say goodbye to comic-book characters because we all know it’s temporary, but the first death for a non-A-lister has the potential for finality. Nobody is going to let Storm stay dead for any amount of time, but Rahne Sinclair? Who? If that New Mutants movie gets buried she could be gone forever!
I haven’t regularly read an X-book since Second Coming. With each successive relaunch the team “sworn to protect a world that hates and fears them” became harder and harder for me to keep track of and become invested in.
I know the reader is wondering, why Wolfsbane? Why care now? Well, reader, it’s possible that Rahne Sinclair, the Irish lycanthrope X-man, may have been my favorite of the mutants.
Hair Dresser: What’ll it be? Wolfsbane: I want the hair Wolverine’s hair would have.
Those familiar with the character mostly remember her for the time she spent in the New Mutants, when she was rocking the worst Beast/Wolverine ripoff haircut I’ve ever seen. For me, it’s Excalibur which was one of my favorite comic titles as a kid. I grew up in the 90s and 00s Our comic collection was dictated by whatever was in the 25 cent bin….that meant we read a ton of Excalibur, a healthy portion of X-factor, and a touch of New Mutants. Most of those issues aren’t exactly greatest hits, but they all featured Wolfsbane. I’d unintentionally followed the lupine mutant through three teams. Being a monster nut, the werewolf thing was right up my alley, she even had an origin right out of a James Whale movie which involved an angry mob trying to burn her at the stake! I grew older and more awkward Rahne’s teenage struggle for an identity of her choosing resonated with me. I’ve always been a sucker for characters who choose their identities in spite of the harm it causes them. When I could afford my own comics, she’d returned to X-factor in a team lead by Multiple Man. During the black-suit psycho-murderer X-Force days she’d joined up with Cyclop’s death squad. For me, Rahne Sinclair has served as a pedigree for mutant books. Any team she’s on is a team worth reading.
This was a favorite issue of mine as a kiddo
Now, she’s no more. Upon learning this sad fact I was made aware that Strong Guy was lost as well. Evidently, it’s a bad time for D-list 90s mutants.
I bought a copy of Uncanny X-men #16 to find out how the superhero equivalent of Lon Chaney Jr. meets her fate. Was it a silver bullet? Contact with actual wolfsbane? Was her heart eaten? Did she forget her heartworm medicine? Or get rabies?
Spoiler alert(well, it’s a little late the whole damned article is a spoiler)
Cliffhanger: starring Moonstar
WAIT, WHAT?! I feel cheated. If you skipped 1-15, things are a little hard to follow(why does Banshee look like he’s stepped off the set of The Walking Dead?) Still, this Moonstar splash feels like a classic comic fake-out, any self-respecting comic book reader would be suspicious of a disingenuous cliffhanger. Rosenberg, it’s not too late to make this right. Please, let Wolfsbane be okay.
But, just if that’s not the case, rest in peace Wolfsbane. You were always a hero of mine. From the shores of Muir Island to the halls of the Xavier Institute for Gifted Youngsters, you will be missed. I’m sure we’ll meet again, but in the meantime, say hi to Ben Parker for us…that is only if all dogs go to comic-book heaven. You’ll be missed.