Magic: Gathering’s recent War of the Spark: Forsaken novel by Greg Weisman (Gargoyles, Star Wars Rebels, Young Justice) confirms that Chandra Nalaar, “had never been into girls.”

Some fans of the extended Magic: The Gathering lore were disappointed after reading the novel believing it retconned the previously established bisexuality of the planeswalker Chandra Nalaar.

War of the Spark: Ravnica

In War of the Spark: Ravnica, also written by Weisman, Chandra confirms she had feelings for her fellow Gatewatch member Gideon Jura.

“Once upon a time, Chandra had sported a major crush on Gids.”

Chandra also declares her love for fellow Gatewatch member Nissa Revane towards the end of War of the Spark Ravnica.

Homesick

In Homesick by Chris L’Etoile, many believe an interaction between Chandra and Nissa also had sexual overtones.

The interaction takes place after Chandra is attempting to vent some frustration on a punching bag, but ends up turning it into ashes and making a mess of the gym. She seeks out Nissa, where this encounter occurs.

During the encounter, Chandra details she wants Nissa to help her center her and find peace.

“I swallow, but my throat’s dried up and it takes a few tries. “I—I just thought that…You know that time on Zendikar, when our minds touched? I felt Zendikar’s anger, right? The power of a whole world. Your world. And it was amazing. The most incredible thing ever. But behind Zendikar, behind the anger and the power, I felt you. Your mind. And it was real tranquil, you know? You kinda…centered me, I guess. You were all calm and connected-y.””

The story continues with Chandra asking Nissa to help her manage her anger and stay clam and grounded.

“I grab a strand of my hair and yank until it hurts. That will keep me focused, I bet. “Anyways. I was thinking there are times when I get super pi—uh, real angry, and usually something blows up. But I think I’d rather be able to touch that place again. What your mind felt like. Calm. Grounded. I mean…” I make the mistake of looking up and her eyes are just there, watching, and all the air in my throat jams up and refuses to move.

I struggle to pull in a breath. “I think Jace would prefer that. So I don’t wreck his house. I mean, he’s got this expensive stuff all over.””

Chandra believes the encounter turns awkward and decidedly chooses to flee.

“I’m on my feet, slamming my head into a low branch. “Ow! S-sorry. This was dumb.” I back away, clutching my head, pulling in my elbows to hide my burning eyes, stumbling over the same damn root, shaking, panting for breath, stomach churning. What did I do, what did I do, what did I do?”

While many believe this encounter had sexual overtones others believe it reads more like a normal interaction between friends.

War of the Spark: Forsaken

In the latest novel, Weisman writes that “Chandra had never been into girls” and that, when Nissa and Chandra previously confessed their love for each other in War of the Spark: Ravnica, they “knew deep down they were only speaking platonically”:

“Nissa Revane.

“Chandra,” she said.

“Nissa,” Chandra said, hoping that for just a moment, for just one little moment, the sight of the elf would make the pyromancer’s cheeks burn, make her heart skip a beat, give her those flutters.

But no.

Chandra had never been into girls. Her crushes — and she’d had her fair share — were mostly the brawny (and decidedly male) types like Gids. But there had always been something about Nissa Revane specifically, something the two of them shared in that great chemical mix — arcing between them like one of Ral Zarek’s lightning bolts — that had thrilled her. From the moment they first met.

Now everything’s different.

It was over. Before it had ever had a chance to begin. Maybe, maybe they had missed their moment.”

[…]

“On Ravnica, in the wake of Gideon’s death and Bolas’, they had admitted to each other that they loved. But both of them knew deep down they were only speaking platonically.”

This confirmation did not sit well with some fans, who took to social media to express their vehement displeasure with the perceived reinforcement of Chandra’s heterosexuality:

The confirmation of Chandra’s sexuality appears to have not been a widely agreed upon decision, as Wizards of the Coast Principal Game Designer Doug Beyer expressed his displeasure with the change by noting that it had been a “hard week for my heart.”

A Twitter user who claimed to have “worked at Wizards when the Bolas arc was being planned” stated that the team had the “intention of representing diverse sexualities” and claiming that “somebody stepped in and stopped us.”

The confirmation of Chandra’s heterosexuality has led to some users speculating the perceived erasure of her bisexuality was made in order to make the upcoming Netflix series, which will feature Chandra and Jace as the main characters, appealing to the Chinese market, though this theory currently remains unconfirmed:

As of writing, neither Wizards of the Coast nor Weisman have publicly commented on the confirmation of Chandra’s sexuality.

What do you make of the confirmation of Chandra’s sexuality? Do you believe it was a retcon? Or do you think they had always just been friends?

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  • About The Author

    Spencer is a contributing reporter for Bounding Into Comics. Unabashed anime fan, life-long comic book reader, avid video game player, and in need of a separate house for all of his figures. Trying to sift through the noise to bring the readers the facts.

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