Sunday, November 24, 2013

X-23: The Plot Holes/Mistakes (Part 1)

Over the course of the last decade, X-23 has gone through many stories and had her story tweaked and retconned while also expanded upon by several different writers.  Some of which has been to correct her history.  Some of it has made her history more complicated.  Some writers have disregarded it entirely, creating new problems to address, and some writers have made attempts to clean up the mess by filling the plot holes.  For part 1, we're starting off with two of such moments, with eventually the rest to follow in subsequent entries.

Number of Facility Heads X-23 Has Killed

"Not Forgotten" establishes that X-23 has killed 2 heads of the Facility.  Which is true, but it's Kimura who speaks this line.  Dr. Rice had Dr. Sutter murdered in secret using X-23 to do so during the X-23 v1 story "Innocence Lost."  It's never shown that Kimura was aware of this as it was his bid right after Dr. Sutter was becoming tired and signed Dr. Rice over as a new head of the Facility.  Kimura should not have known what Dr. Rice did.  So her pointing out that it's been 3 heads is entirely a plot hole.  She should have only been aware of X-23 causing Dr. Rice's death, though yes she did blame her murder of Dr. Harkins on X-23.  This should make it officially only the death of two heads by X-23's hand then from her view/blame.  Not the death of 3.

It can be argued that the correction Dr. Harkins was going to make before he was, erm, interrupted by Kimura, is that it was only one.  This could suppose that Zander Rice did let Kimura in about his murder plot against Dr. Sutter.  Though with it being entirely his own reasoning to do so because of Dr. Sutter's wife telling her husband about their affair and Dr. Rice already in power at the Facility, it makes zero sense why he would have told Kimura about this move that was seemingly pure selfish driven to avoid taking responsibility of his actions that gave birth to a son he also wanted dead.  The entire plot was done in secret with only himself and X-23 knowing at first.

Only X-23's mother would later find out the truth about what happened, but was killed during the escape before she could tell anyone else that would survive.  Henry Sutter did witness X-23 being at the house that night as she spared him, but those he spoke to were of the same Facility location that was burned to the ground with no survivors except Kimura.  It's unknown if any information he provided would have been passed along to another location as it was within 24 hours of this event happening.  Further Facility investigations into that locations downfall may have unearthed it, but it is entirely unknown as with the fate of the Sutter child.

Outside of Dr. Martin Sutter and Dr. Zander Rice, we were shown that Dr. Harkins was another Facility head through Kimura's comment towards him.  As depicted in the original origin miniseries, there may still be 3 other heads of the Facility.  During Sarah Kinney's escape plan creation, she pulled 5 photos aside of scientists, one of which being the photo of Zander Rice that she used for X-23's mission.  The other 4 are unknown although one seems like it may have been Dr. Harkins.  This suggests that all 5 photos were potentially of the then current heads of the Facility.  Counting Dr. Martin Sutter, this would bring the total to 6 potentially known heads of the Facility.

Three are dead.  Another three may yet remain unless more have been appointed to the position.

X-23 and Children

As pointed out in Dr. Kinney's letter, her moment of truth in deciding to save X-23 came when X-23 saved the Sutter child of her own accord, through no orders from others.

In fact, her orders were to kill the boy too, but X-23 refused.  This being immediately after the Megan Kinney incident where she made her mother proud by saving Megan, and was never harmed at the Facility for this disobedience creates an issue in this regard.  They had shown her it was okay to save children.  That this would be something that was okay.  In doing so, she didn't so much as make a choice as she did follow parameters from her previous mission that garnished her what she considered praise from them.  That form of praise being by not getting abused.  Laura was able to see kindness come out of her actions in how her mother comforted Megan.

The X-23 v3 ongoing looked to correct this.  It tried to show that this was an occasional reoccurring pattern with X-23 even prior to those two incidents to help better support that X-23 had a soft spot for children so as not to harm them.  In doing so, it presented another child that X-23 refused to kill.  Alex Cimini was added to X-23's origin as another child she chose to save that no one was made aware of.

A fantastic move to help bolster that X-23 has made choices before to save children.   While it doesn't change the motives Dr. Kinney may have had in saving X-23 because it's not reflected in the letter she wrote or that her mother even ever knew, it does present more evidence that her protecting children wasn't only from accidental conditioning.

By Dr. Kinney's own admission, she isn't aware of these actions and is blinded by her reasoning.  Sarah Kinney comes across as acting on purely emotion with only there being two instances of X-23 saving children as she writes in her letter.  The origins also depict that X-23 had killed children before of her own accord.  As shown in the mission montage and the Johnson candidate assassination.

The original origin being more a story of X-23's mother as opposed to Laura herself, this is passable.  It shows the mother's rise and eventual emotional turn.  So being blinded by her feelings is expected.  Until the ongoing had further developed on this point though, it was a potential plot hole in reasoning that could have had disastrous effects for X-23's future.

Part 2 to follow soon where we'll dive into the shifting ages, more on the Facility, and also her first X-Men interactions!

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