Wolverine is one of the most popular characters in comic book history. The character has become fairly divisive, but for many fans, he’ll always have a place in their hearts. As with other highly successful characters, Logan arguably started to lose some steam in the early 2010s. Through the years, writers had Wolverine interact with practically every corner of the Marvel Universe. So, in the hopes of taking the character off the shelf for a while, Marvel launched The Death of Wolverine. Shortly thereafter, Logan’s daughter, Laura Kinney, or X-23, took over as the new Wolverine.
Kinney has enjoyed a lot of success with the role, but now, with Return of Wolverine, Logan is back. Naturally, some fans expect the original Wolverine will reclaim his name. But, many fans are worried that, by doing so, Marvel will prioritize Logan and diminish Laura’s role in the MU. Both Laura and Logan are worthwhile Wolverines, but how can they coexist now that the former has filled her father’s footsteps? Logan gave fans an in-depth look at the relationship between Wolverine and his daughter and many fans hope that, someday, Laura will carry on her father’s legacy on the big screen. For now, we hope that, ultimately, both characters will be able to use the name. But, still, they both have compelling cases as to why they deserve to be the true Wolverine. As a result, we’ve decided to list 10 Reasons Why X-23 Should Be Marvel's Wolverine (And 10 Why We Need Logan Back)
20 X-23: FOOT CLAWS!
Laura has foot claws; therefore, she’s the better Wolverine. All joking aside, Laura’s ability to use her feet as lethal weapons makes her, in some ways, even more dangerous than Logan in combat. With the original Wolverine, he could theoretically be defeated as long as an enemy restrains his hands. Laura has repeatedly proven that, thanks to her feet, taking her down is even more difficult.
In Logan, when Donald Pierce’s goons try to subdue Laura, she uses her feet to tip the scale in her favor. Laura’s noticeable upgrade makes her a formidable foe and it’s one of her clearest advantages over Logan.
19 LOGAN: (NEW) COSMIC CONNECTIONS
Before Logan had fully returned to the greater Marvel Universe, recent issues of Thor showcase a future where the character is one of the few survivors after the elimination of Earth. This version of Old Logan is a host for the Phoenix Force and the results are awesome. The two heroes have an incredible battle and they also face an evolved Doctor Doom.
The pages of Avengers #700 also reveal that Logan is on the path to cosmic importance. Using the Phoenix Force, he sees the future of the MU and delivers it to Loki. This power could be considered a reason to promote him beyond the role of Wolverine, but it’d also be useful in his work with the X-Men and other heroes.
18 X-23: DIVERSITY
For a long time, many of Marvel’s top heroes have been men as Tony Stark, Steve Rogers, Thor, and Logan have enjoyed a decades-long run in the spotlight. In recent years, Marvel has tried to prioritize diversity, as women heroes are finally getting the chance to fill these iconic roles. Jane Foster, Riri Williams, and Carol Danvers are just a few examples of heroines who have become popular recently.
Laura has been the main Wolverine for a while now and she should keep the role. Logan’s had his time and it’s Laura’s turn. The two characters can co-exist without taking the title away from X-23.
17 LOGAN: HISTORY
Say what you will about Logan, but at least one thing is certain about him. The original Wolverine brings a lot of history with him wherever he goes. His legacy as one of the most famous X-Men in the team’s history is undeniable. Since debuting in The Incredible Hulk #180, Logan has become one of Marvel’s most recognizable characters.
Many fans consider him one of the best antiheroes of all time. Yes, the original Wolverine has his detractors, who have valid criticisms, but some will say the character’s long run in the spotlight is one of the reasons he should be replaced. Furthermore, Logan’s history also deserves to be respected and celebrated.
16 LAURA: HOSTED UNI-POWER
Laura has bonded with a number of cosmic forces and, arguably, the Uni-Power is the most impressive of them all. The force’s primary responsibility is to protect Eternity (and the universe), and to do so, whoever bonds with the energy is transformed into Captain Universe. Various heroes have held this power, but Laura is the only mutant who has ever bonded with it. While bonded with the energy, Laura has a range of additional powers, including Uni-Vision and telekinesis.
According to the Enigma Force, Laura is the future heir of its power, so it may not be long before we see Laura fill Captain Universe’s shoes again.
15 LOGAN: GREATEST MAPLE LEAF HERO
Plenty of heroes from Canada have made names for themselves in comic books. A whole team of them serve on one of Marvel’s most underrated teams, Alpha Flight. Although other heroes preceded Logan, he was the first one to hit the stage in a big way.
Logan’s connection with Canada often comes up in his stories. The original Wolverine can often be found somewhere in the woodlands of his old home (it's always a good place to check when Logan is unaccounted for). Though Canada remains underrepresented with major comic book characters, Logan will always be an exception to that argument.
14 LAURA: HEIR TO HIGHER POWERS
Logan isn’t the only Wolverine with cosmic connections. We’ve mentioned that Laura is the heir to the Enigma Force, but her connection to this energy is even deeper than that. Laura has teamed up with other previous hosts of the Uni-Power (Invisible Woman and Spider-Man) to stop a sinister energy from harming the Enigma Force. Laura is part of a prestigious group of individuals who have bonded with the Uni-Power.
Laura also has a connection to Mephisto. In the “Circle of Four” storyline, she was revealed to have a Hell-Mark, which suggests that she could inherit Mephisto’s throne at some point.
13 LOGAN: MORE THAN AN X-MAN
As one of Marvel’s most popular characters, it’s not surprising that Logan has often served with teams beyond the X-Men. Early on, he fought alongside Alpha Flight, then, Logan went on to join forces with some of Marvel’s most prestigious teams and organizations.
The original Wolverine has been an Avenger, he’s served with S.H.I.E.L.D., and even the (new) Fantastic Four. As a man who has lived for centuries, Logan’s experience and wisdom are invaluable wherever he goes. Sometimes, the X-Men are left in their own world, so Logan is a fitting choice for a bridge between the team and the greater Marvel Universe.
12 X-23: NEWER CHARACTER/MORE FRESH
Logan debuted in 1974; that’s given fans 44 years of stories involving the original Wolverine. The character has been involved with practically every corner of the Marvel Universe. While there are still many stories to be told, it’s fair to say that Laura is a fresher character.
Laura debuted in 2004, so her storytelling potential, relative to her father's, has barely been utilized. At the very least, it’s much harder to argue that she’s a stale character. Marvel should capitalize on her vitality while it lasts as plenty of stories about Laura, including her relationship with Gabby and her continual adjustment to the role of Wolverine, are ripe for the picking.
11 LOGAN: CHILDREN PROVIDE ANOTHER LAYER
Plenty of stories have already explored Logan’s relationship with his sons, Daken and Jimmy Hudson. Throughout the years, Logan has had many other children in some way, shape, or form. Though the relationship is untraditional, Laura is technically his daughter, since she was cloned from his genetic material.
Plenty of potential remains for more of an exploration of these relationships, though. While Laura has a wonderful relationship with Gabby, or Honey Badger, Logan’s complicated relationships with his children should be developed further. Many fans are eager to see how Logan’s relationship with Laura will change once he fully returns to the land of the living. The same curiosity applies to Daken and Jimmy.
10 X-23: EXPERT MARKSMAN
In some stories, it’s been established that Logan has fought in various wars, so he’s become a proficient soldier. However, X-23 was intentionally molded to become a living weapon, so the Facility trained her accordingly, making her a masterful marksman with long-range weapons. Though both Wolverines have become skillful martial artists, Lauren has a leg up on her father with her marksmanship skills.
Logan has experience in battle, which can’t be replicated, but with long-range firearms, Laura is a lethal weapon. This ability hasn’t been used in many stories, and for good reason. Laura is a powerhouse, so hand-to-hand fights are often more compelling.
9 LOGAN: NOT INVINCIBLE
Logan’s healing factor has saved him, countless times, from a plethora of injuries (i.e. a nuclear bomb) and it might seem like the original Wolverine is practically invincible, but he’s not. Logan is particularly vulnerable to getting tossed into the sun or drowning.
Logan also has a weakness to the metal Carbonadium, one of the strongest metals in the MU. The radioactive metal slows Logan’s healing factor, which leaves him susceptible to various forms of injury he can usually endure. Deadpool has capitalized on this weakness before, and the connection with Omega Red is largely responsible for the rivalry between the two mutants.
8 X-23: MORE AGILE, STRONGER HEALING FACTOR
Laura has an unexpected advantage over her father. While Logan’s entire skeleton was covered in adamantium, Laura’s claws are the only part of her body cased with the metal. Adamantium is remarkably heavy, so, though Logan is fast for his weight, Laura is even more agile. In the field, she’s faster, which can mean all the difference between victory and defeat in battle.
Laura’s limited amount of adamantium is also beneficial because she doesn’t have to cope with the metal’s poisoning the way her father does. As a result, X-23 has a faster healing factor. To be fair, both Wolverines have astonishing healing factors, but Laura’s ability takes the cake.
7 LOGAN: INTERNATIONAL HERO
Logan, having lived for centuries, has travelled around the world. His story has involved Russia and a legendary stay in Japan, where he learned various martial arts (Chris Claremont dove into the character’s association with Japan in the famous Wolverine miniseries in 1982). With so much traveling under his belt, Logan has learned approximately 18 languages. The original Wolverine’s multilingualism makes him a true asset, whether it’s for the X-Men, Avengers, or S.H.I.E.L.D.
In the Marvel Universe, mutants have a global presence, so Logan’s ability to speak various languages is helpful in the X-Men’s goal to spread Charles Xavier’s message throughout the world.
6 X-23: (MORE) EMOTIONALLY STABLE
As a subject of the Facility, Laura had a difficult childhood. She endured countless experiments, including the anesthesia-free extraction, and reinsertion, of her claws. Her experience extended beyond her time in the program, but it did not hinder her state of mind. As it turns out, Laura’s healing factor doesn’t just apply to her body.
X-23, against all odds, overcame her upbringing. In about a decade, she managed to emotionally heal herself. Comparatively, it took Logan a hundred years to even begin his recovery. When it comes to Laura’s case for Wolverine, there’s something to be said for a well-adjusted individual.
5 LOGAN: BERSERKER RAGE
It’s easy to say that Logan’s a beast. You’d be right to point out that his states of berserker rage aren’t unique; Laura has them too. But, boy, there’s something nostalgic about seeing Logan lose control and become a one man wrecking crew. To best demonstrate this point, the climax of Logan comes to mind.
When Laura and her friends are in danger, the titular character takes a full bottle of green serum in order to trigger a rage state. Logan powers himself up so he can stop, or at least distract, X-24. During this rage, Logan eliminates many of Zander Rice’s goons. This scene has often played out in the comics and we’d love to see it again.
4 X-23: REMEMBERS HER PAST
Logan is infamous for his inability to fully remember his past. His mind, in an attempt to heal and protect itself, erases and/or represses difficult memories. Otherwise, Logan would be forced to relive decades upon decades of his painful personal history.
Laura isn’t that lucky; she can remember everything. From a storytelling perspective, this ability is helpful because it allows Laura to continually engage with her past. Some stories have already embraced this idea, as Laura has revisited the Facility. Though X-23 might prefer to forget her painful memories, being able to remember can pave the way for additional healing.
3 LOGAN: RESISTANT TO TELEPATHIC ATTACKS
Logan can attest to the fact that there’s at least one perk to being one of Charles Xavier’s favorite students. Professor X gave his pupil psionic shields, which augment Logan’s defenses against telepathic attacks. Even without Xavier’s help, the original Wolverine can resist anyone who tries to prove his mind.
Thanks to the immeasurable distress Logan has endured, he’s built up a lot of scar tissue. In his brain, this tissue causes him to repress the past. It also helps protect him from telepathy. With various mind-probing adversaries (and even teammates like Jean Grey,) Logan’s ability to block these attacks comes in handy.
2 X-23: CAN EVOLVE
When your body is covered with one of the heaviest metals in the Marvel Universe, it won’t be changing very much. For mutants, many of them continue to evolve; at least, the possibility remains open. However, Logan’s body, until the addition of his Fire claws, is practically stuck in place, evolutionarily speaking. Laura, with much less adamantium on her skeleton, can continue to change and manifest new powers.
We haven’t seen this possibility come to fruition yet, but it's all the more reason to keep her in the spotlight. X-23 could be given any number of new powers that could further set her apart from her father.
1 LOGAN: TRAGIC HERO
Logan is one of the most tragic heroes in comic book history. He has lost the love(s) of his life (several times) and he’s had to live through losing various friends, family members, and allies. This effect is one of the most enduring parts of having the power to live for centuries, and it has often provided fruitful fuel for storytelling.
Additionally, Logan has to live with the pain and guilt, often caused by his own actions. He’s the best he is at what he does, and sometimes, he’s had to use his skills on the people he loves the most. That responsibility is a heavy burden and it eats away at the original Wolverine.