Discover more about the character before her big screen debut in The New Mutants
The Marvel Comics character known as Rahne ‘Wolfsbane’ Sinclair poised to be portrayed by Game of Throne actress, Maisie Williams, is probably one of the more tragic characters in all of X-Men lore. Where an equally heartbreaking figure in Magik embraces her dark roots, Rahne is most often a victim of hers. In other words, she’ll most likely be a great fit for the horror style The New Mutants movie is aiming for. Created way back in 1982 by Chris Claremont and Bob McLord, she’s had her fair share of stories! Here are a few things to know about Rahne and her origin before the movie hits the theaters. Be warned, her story is not for the faint of heart.
Rahne is a mutant lycanthropic-metamorph. At will, she can transform herself from a human into a wolf-like creature and back. Over the years she’s demonstrated the ability to maintain an in-between form, something she utilizes often in combat. In it, she can stand upright on two feet (opposed to four like a tradition canine) and maintain a fair amount of her rational human mind. However, Rahne is still very excitable and volatile, easily giving into her more baser instincts. In her full and semi-changed forms, Rahne has superhuman senses (including animal eye acuity) strength, agility, reflexes, and razor-sharp claws. In her human form, Rahne has access to all of these abilities, but to a much lesser degree. During the Brotherhood of Mutant’s assault on Muir Island (Scotland), she was shot by Mystique with a “neutralizer.” The wound temporarily severed Rahne’s connection to her powers.
An orphan, Rahne grew up under the supervision of Reverend Craig, presumably as a Catholic. She was mistreated on a daily basis and told it was right under a twisted interpretation of the religion. When Rahne’s powers surfaced, Craig riled up a mob with the intention of burning Rahne at the stake, the archaic means of dealing with a presumed witch. Luckily, the child was rescued by Moira MacTaggart, who later adopted her as her daughter.
On a side note; Craig turned out to be Rahne’s biological father and later fell in league with the mutant-hating terrorist group, “the Purifiers.” He took part in brainwashing Rahne after she attempted to infiltrate the organization. There’s more to the story and I warn you, things get grim between the estranged father and daughter. If you want to read it for yourself, see X-Force Vol. 3. Issues 1-6.
Into adulthood, Rahne maintained her faith, but it also came into conflict with her adventurer lifestyle. She often dealt with feelings of self-hatred, as her powers appeared to be steeped in the supernatural (even though they aren’t… not really). Her beliefs also gave her issues concerning her teammate Magik, who’d quite often utilize sorcery and the occult. One of her most recent obstacles has been making peace with the fact her longtime teammate and ex-boyfriend, Rictor, came out as gay and began a relationship with fellow X-Factor member, Shatterstar.
Rahne’s Son, Tier Sinclair
In her earlier New Mutant adventures, Rahne came into a contact with an Asgardian by the name of Hrimhari, also a lycanthropic metamorph. The two fell in love but Rahne chose not to remain on Asgard. Years later while recovering from her experiences with her father and the Purifiers, Hrimhari came to Rahne. The two ran off in their wolf forms and slept together, and resulted in Rahne being pregnant with his half-human/ half-mystical child. The process eventually proved life-threatening to Rahne as her body wasn’t equipped to carry such a child. Desperate to save her life, Hrimhari offered his soul to Hela, the Asgardian Goddess of Death. In return, Hela would restore the life of Elixir (he was dead at that moment), a powerful mutant healer. Revived through the pact, Elixir healed and fortified Rahne’s body to withstand the pregnancy by transferring some of the baby’s superhuman aspects into her.
Hrimhari’s mystical nature created more problems, however. Rahne’s pregnancy attracted the attention of many mystical beings and god-like entities interested in staking claim to the child. When Rahne eventually gave birth to her son, the child was born completely feral. Rahne was understandably traumatized and wanted nothing to do with it. In her panic, she regarded the child as a sort of divine punishment. Jacob Russell, better known as Werewolf by Night (seriously, that’s his name), was present, but unlike the other forces wanting the child for self-purposes, he only wanted to help. Unbeknownst to Rahne, and X-Factor, her team at the time, Jacob adopted the newborn (Tier). Rahne’s initial reaction wasn’t lasting. She later came to terms with her son, but, tragically, Tier died during the Hell on Earth War storyline, murdered by a soulless Strong Guy. But that’s a whole story by itself.
There aren’t too many X-Men that have been on as many Teams as Rahne. From her debut and into the late 80s, she was a member of New Mutants. Rahne then joined X-Factor following X-Tinction Agenda. The team came into existence after the original five X-Men: Cyclops, Jean, Iceman, Beast, and Angel, abandoned the name. This version of X-Factor included Havok, Quicksilver, Multiple Man and others. It was government funded and overseen by Forge.
After the Marvel event Infinity Crusade, Rahne returned home to Muir Island and joined Excalibur alongside Captain Britain, Meggan, and veteran X-Men Nightcrawler, Shadowcat, and Colossus. She’d later return to the X-Men as an instructor where she engaged in a relationship with Elixir, a student at the time and someone who would later both restore her powers after being robbed of them by Mystique and save her life during her supernatural pregnancy. After their relationship was revealed to the school, and subsequent fall-out of such a revelation, Rahne quit the institute and rejoined X-Factor.
During Messiah Complex, at Cyclops’ request, Rahne joined a strike team version of X-Force with Wolverine, Warpath, Caliban, and X-23 to battle the Purifiers. Her tenure is short-lived, however. Due to the trauma she suffered from the aforementioned brainwashing at the hands of her father (again… read X-Force Vol. 3), the mutant journey-woman returned to X-Factor! However, by that time the team was then more of a private investigations company.
With stories like Rahne, it’s not hard to understand why the execs over at Fox chose to make the New Mutants movie a horror film. Are you looking forward to seeing it? Let us know!