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Comic Legends: Was X-23 Nearly Permanently Stuck Physically at Age 13?

Welcome to Comic Book Legends Revealed! This is the seven hundred and seventeenth installment where we examine comic book legends and whether they are true or false.

As usual, there will be three posts, one for each of the weekly three legends.

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COMIC LEGEND:

Craig Kyle wanted X-23 to be permanently stuck at age 13 (or even younger) in the comics.

STATUS:

True

In 2017's Logan, Dafne Keen was a scene-stealer as X-23/Laura, the young clone of Wolverine...

Part of what made the character stand out was that she was young but also so deadly.

What's fascinating is that the approach in that film is basically what X-23's creator, Craig Kyle, wanted them to do in the comics!

In an interview at the Hollywood Reporter with Aaron Couch, Kyle explained how he wanted to adapt X-23 (who Kyle had created the X-Men: Evolution animated series) for the comic book world...

I am so grateful for how he brought her to screen. He has a chance to do what I couldn't. My pitch to Joe [Quesada] when he said he wanted to put her in a [comic book] title was, "Interview with the Vampire had this great Kirsten Dunst character, who was this young child vampire and she was horrified when she realized she couldn't age." To me, the beauty and tragedy of X-23's continuing story was she leaves the institute when she's 13. I could have pushed that younger. I could have made it 11. She's going to continue to grow and mature and evolve, but because they activated her healing factor early, she's going be trapped in her youthful body for a long time. What I didn't realize was Joe had a very specific story in mind for NYX. I didn't know about NYX. My excitement of having her in a book was all I cared about at that time.

X-23 was introduced to the Marvel Universe in the miniseries NYX (by Joe Quesdada and Joshua Middleton), where we discover that she is working as a teenage prostitute...

Kyle continued...

But she was then immediately aged up to 16, and then in Uncanny [X-Men] she was 22 and had a boob job. Those issues are a dark place. I was really hoping we would have a young character, a child, a pre-teen who wasn't going to be in the dating, the sexuality aspects of the storylines for a long time to come. ... It's just one of those things she's going to have to carry as she evolves and grows and takes a journey through the Marvel U. But because of the jump in the NYX, that chunk of her storyline couldn't be told.

Here is when X-23 made her way into Chris Claremont and Alan Davis' Uncanny X-Men run...

It would have been interesting to see Kyle's initial interpretation of the character, although we've certainly gotten a number of awesome X-23 stories with her at her current age (including a number of great works by Kyle himself, working with his co-writer, Chris Yost. The two wrote a few X-23 miniseries and also added her to the cast of the New X-Men and then later their version of X-Force.

Thanks to Craig Kyle and Aaron Couch for the information!

Check out some other death-themed entertainment legends from Legends Revealed:

1. Was There Really a Special R-Rated Episode of Dexter’s Laboratory?

2. Is There Really an X-Rated Directer’s Cut of the Film Scarface?

3. Was Dolly Parton Really a Producer on Buffy the Vampire Slayer?

4. Was the Song “We’ve Only Just Begun” Originally From a Bank Commercial?

Check back later for part 2 of this week's legends!

And remember, if you have a legend that you're curious about, drop me a line at either brianc@cbr.com or cronb01@aol.com!

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