Monday, February 27, 2012

The Sage Saga part II: Compelling The Living Computer

Your name is Sage and you are a living computer. This means your formidable brain has a natural immunity to outside influences.

Furthermore, you're also blessed with telepathy, a gift honed by Charles Xavier, the world's premier telepathic intellect, making it virtually impossible for you to ever get influenced, hijacked or controlled. You'll always be you.

Unless, of course, your name is Sage and you appear in a comic written by Chris "don't mindcontrol if I do!" Claremont. Lets take a look at the mind control influenced shenanigans Claremont had his pet character hop through in recent years.

First things first, lets find out how Sage ended up with the X-men to begin with... She was doing fine, serving as advisor to the Hellfire Club until 2000. Then, Chris Claremont took over the X-books and there was a line-wide 'six months later' gap, which allowed all the established status quos to be shaken up. Teams had new members, some old familiar faces were missing, what happened?

Sage was one of those new faces among the X-men, serving along with Forge in an advisory capacity.  It wasn't until about 5 years later when we found out what caused her to join the team.

The answer to that riddle no one really cared about came in the pages of X-treme X-men # 44. Which provided the origin of Elias Bogan, one of the founding fathers of the Hellfire Club and also a long lived telepath near the level of the Shadow King.

Sebastian Shaw had wrested control of the Inner circle from Bogan years ago, thanks to Sage (then called Tessa) and Bogan was out for revenge. He took over her mind and tried to offer her to Shaw for ransom. He wasn't too interested, but luckily Storm was around to save Sage.

Free from Bogan's mind control, Sage aided the X-men in several missions and developed a close working relationship with fellow X-man Bishop. The detective from the future and the woman with the impenetrable computer mind made a pretty good team. And then stuff like this happens...

Remember when Xavier's was turned into a public school for mutants and all sorts of super powered preteens covered the grounds? Sure you do, it was before Wanda Maximoff decimated the entire mutant population with three simple words.

"No more mutants" is something Sage and Bishop undoubtedly would have agreed with in X-treme X-men # 22.  Considering the little trick these kids pulled on them. And wait til you see what they made Bishop do...

Turning an angry black man with guns into a tree snogging weirdo and his deadly lady friend into a rat? No wonder all those young mutants tended to end up dead before their sweet 16... 

After some more adventures with the X-treme X-men team, Sage became a part of the X-men proper, serving as their mentat. Unfortunately, not long after that, this happened in Uncanny X-men # 446...

The background to this story can be found HERE, but suffice it to say, the computer crack'd again.

"Something's happened to Sage" sort of became the official tagline for whatever team she happened to be on in the latter years of Claremont's dealings with the character. That'll be the focus of the  Sage Saga part III: Semi Sapphic Symbolism.

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