Being a mutant is treated as a curse in Marvel’s X-Men stories, but these situations can get “worse” for some characters who unknowingly undergo a second mutation while still having their first one.
Basically, this means the mutant develops newer, generally improved powers than before. However, there’s almost always a catch, as the mutation usually kickstarts without much warning and can lead to the character going through an identity crisis. Still, these 10 characters can’t complain much seeing as they became vastly overpowered compared to how they once used to be.
10 Beast: Feline Form
Beast’s secondary mutation was forcibly started by Sage after the former was critically injured and needed a boost to be revived. However, Beast wasn’t so happy with this change because it turned his appearance into a feline.
In New X-Men #114, his abilities were enhanced, though, as Beast could make use of his cat-like powers for super running, senses, stamina, and brought the mutation brought an added level of durability he didn’t have before. Beast developed a healing factor that would typically kick in within just a few hours. All in all, he turned into a faster, more durable version of his former self.
9 Masque: Appearance Alteration
We’re all familiar with the powers of Mystique, who has been known to take the forms of whoever she wants; however, in many ways, Masque is the anti-Mystique, in that he can turn others into whatever form he wants. Think of it like Masque being able to sculpt people like clay.
In time, Masque himself gained the powers of shapeshifting (first shown in Uncanny X-Men #489), which was explained as Masque undergoing a secondary mutation. This makes him a more serious threat than because no-one would know if Masque was among them using someone else’s appearance; plus, he could blend in and turn his opponents into horrible forms.
8 Gambit: Precognition
To be honest, people are wonky over Gambit’s primary mutation as well. For the casual reader, it might not be common knowledge that Gambit’s power is to charge an object using kinetic energy, causing it to explode.
Gambit's secondary mutation came as a result of his trauma from being temporarily blinded by a card that had exploded while in his hand. Following this, X-Men Vol. 2 #162 and its direct successor had Gambit gain clairvoyance, or at least something close to it. He could sense danger before it actually happened by "seeing" images in his hand before they happened, which can be likened to Spider-Man’s spider-sense if you want an easier way to understand it. Considering the number of ambushes the X-Men go through, this was a vital ability to have.
7 Polaris: Super Strength
Isn’t it just convenient for someone to lose their first powers only to gain another one? This is what happened to Polaris, who just so happens to be Magneto’s daughter. Her primary abilities are the same as her father, which is to control magnetism; however, her secondary mutation was triggered in Uncanny X-Men #254, when these powers were stolen from her.
Now activated, her next mutation saw Polaris gain super strength like she never had before, and she became a real force of physicality. These powers were supplemented by Polaris increasing in size, becoming extremely durable, and even causing those around her to be infected by emotions of hatred.
6 Black Tom Cassidy: Plant Form
This guy used to have a rather generic ability to discharge blasts toward his enemies, requiring the wooden matter to do so for some reason. Later on, though, his secondary mutation brought about a rather horrific turn, as seen in Uncanny X-Men #411.
Cassidy was now basically a plant creature himself, as he could assimilate himself into all plant-like material and be essentially unkillable. His secondary mutation then evolved into letting him create clones of himself that he perfectly controlled. Since most of the world is surrounded by plant life and the ground we stand on has soil in it, Cassidy is a threat anywhere on the planet.
5 Angel: Healing Powers Using Blood
Healing factors seem to be the norm for most of the people with secondary mutations, but Angel got a nifty upgrade in this regard. Casual fans know of him as the guy with the wings in X-Men: The Last Stand; while that remains his main feature, Angel’s mutation developed something different too.
Now, Angel’s healing factor was something that ran in his blood, and he could provide it to others in order to heal them instantly as well. You can think of him as an infinite health pack in some ways, but it has its limits. The recipient needs to have the same blood as him (shown in Uncanny X-Men #431 when it doesn't work on Nightcrawler), and those critically injured can’t reap its benefits.
4 Kitty Pryde: Time Travel
We’ll be turning to the X-Men film series for this version of the character, where she was essential to the good guys winning the fight. Here, Kitty Pryde developed a secondary mutation before X-Men: Days of Future Past, and could now send the conscience of her ally back in time.
For a girl whose main power is to make herself incorporeal, this was certainly a step up as Kitty sent Wolverine’s consciousness fifty years in the past. Making her “powerful” is the fact that the X-Men had been avoiding the Sentinels for years because of Kitty avoiding certain disaster using her powers each time.
3 Emma Frost: Diamond Form
In her primary form, Emma Frost is powerful enough to be labeled as an Omega-Level telepath; this makes her abilities surpass Professor X’s telepathy in many ways. However, it is her secondary mutation that makes her truly above the rest, best seen in X-Men: First Class.
While in her diamond form, Emma Frost becomes nearly indestructible, as just about nothing can cut through her when she’s in that state. It doesn’t end there, as this form also block out all forms of telepathic offense against her, basically making her a living version of Magneto’s helmet. She’s quite literally both brains and brawn.
2 Iceman: Ice Form
In the comics, Iceman’s secondary mutation was triggered when he was wounded by Black Tom Cassidy in Uncanny X-Men #415, leading to his wound being surrounded by ice; this was the beginning of his ice form, where Iceman could surround his body completely with ice.
The best use of this ability was shown in X-Men: The Last Stand, where Iceman was invulnerable to Pyro’s full force as he was enveloped totally in flames. Iceman’s mutation brought with it an icy touch, which enabled him to freeze anything upon contact. His durability went off the charts too seeing as his flesh and blood now comprised completely of ice.
1 Quentin Quire: Telepathic Link With Every Life-Form
Call it mutation or a curse, either way, Quentin Quire developed a condition in New X-Men #137-138, where he became an incorporeal being that had a telepathic link with every being on the planet across all time.
This effectively meant no-one in any part of history could be safe from him, seeing as he was basically a ball of faster-than-light energy that wasn’t showing forms of extinguishing. In this form, he was a potential host for the Phoenix Force due to his boundless potential and “existing on a higher plane” quality, making Quentin the one with the highest chances of being the most overpowered character.