Since she first joined the X-Men in 1983, Rogue has been one of the most popular members of the already popular superhero team. Part of it is probably her feisty southern belle personality, or the inherent pathos of her powers making her unable to have physical contact with people. Especially those she loves most. But it's also probably because Rogue's ability to absorb and copy other people's superpowers and use them herself makes her very versatile as a superhero. It's just visually interesting to see her use so many different powers and abilities and it means writers can use her in a lot of different ways in an action scene.
But like with a lot of other X-Men, those same amazing powers get a bit bizarre the more you dig into them. Over her thirty years of existence in comics, cartoons, and film, Rogue's powers have manifested in a variety of strange and interesting fashions. Even being a mutant, her absorption and copying ability have mutated her in ways both good and bad. Sometimes they've made her more powerful, sometimes they've put her life in danger. You never really know what will happen when you're part of the X-Men.
Nevertheless, Rogue's mutant power and all the people she's absorbed from over the years have left a mark on her. In some cases, quite literally. We've uncovered the most interesting things about how Rogue's powers have changed and how they have changed her. These are 30 Weird Facts About Rogue's Body In X-Men.
30 She Can Lift Thor's Hammer
The worthiness enchantment on Thor's hammer is pretty famous. You've got to be a good person to lift Mjolnir, but what that means is unclear. What makes someone worthy? Well, an issue of Marvel's speculative What If? series took a look at several alternate universe wielders of Mjolnir, including Rogue. This might be a cheat though, as she could only lift it after absorbing all of Thor's power and ending his life. Thankfully, Thor's spirit lived on inside Rogue and convinced her to take over as God of Thunder. It's never said if she would have been worthy on her own.
29 She And The Captain Had A Child (Sort Of)
Alternate futures must be fun for shippers. Like in this What If? story from 1998 with Rogue and Cap. Spun off from the Secret Wars event, where a bunch of heroes and villains were transported to a dimension called Battleworld to fight each other, the "What If" part is that in this story they never went home.
Several even formed romantic relationships.
Rogue and Cap had a daughter named Sarah, who became the hero Crusader. Though to be fair, this was after the Ms. Marvel psyche had totally taken over Rogue's body. That had to be weird.
28 Her Connection To Ms. Marvel
Fans of Rogue in the 90s animated series will remember that she could fly and had super strength there. What was the deal with that? It was actually the result of a run-in with superhero Carol Danvers, then called Ms. Marvel.
This was back when Rogue was a villain.
The two engaged in a battle where Rogue absorbed some of Ms. Marvel's superpowers, but the length of contact was so long that Rogue ended up permanently absorbing them. Ms. Marvel was left in a coma. Even after she turned good and Ms. Marvel awoke, Carol Danvers still hasn't forgiven Rogue.
27 Absorbing Through Another Person
The caveat for Rogue's powers is that she has to make physical contact with the person whose power she wants to absorb. Marvel's writers seem to want to push that caveat to the limit though. Back during the Asgardian Wars storyline, the X-Men found themselves in the mystic realm of Asgard.
You know, where Thor's from.
There, Rogue touched Nightcrawler who was touching Cyclops and instead of absorbing Nightcrawler's teleportation, absorbed Cyclops' eye beams instead. Some have chalked this up to the magic of Asgard, but it is a curious example nonetheless.
26 Multiple Powers At Once
It took Rogue a good deal of training to fully master her powers. But with some help from Professor X, she was able to exploit them to their full extent. One particularly effective method is using multiple powers she's absorbed at once. If her teammates are around, she could use all their powers together. We can see this in the storyline Second Coming where Rogue fought the Sentinel robot Bastion using the powers of Colossus, Angel, Psylocke, and Wolverine all at once. She was going to use Nightcrawler's power as well, but he was too weak to survive her absorption.
25 Some People She Can't Absorb
Rogue's absorption and copy abilities are pretty versatile, but there are still some people they don't work on. Robots and cyborgs like the Vision or Lady Deathstrike seem to be immune. Other power-drainers like the Black Queen Selene are out as well. But some people have found workarounds. Magneto is able to manipulate his own magnetic field to resist her powers. And energy beings or people with massive amounts of internal power like the Sentry and the Silver Surfer appear to be safe from Rogue. They produce more life-force than she can drain. The jury is out on magical beings like Loki though.
24 Her Friend Who Could Turn Her Powers Off
Many people don't know that Rogue was a villain in her early days. It was serving in Mystique's Brotherhood of Evil Mutants that she met her first real friend, Blindspot. Blindspot had similar powers to Rogue and could actually cancel out her friend's permanently on powers. As the only person Rogue could safely touch, she and Blindspot grew quite close. But Mystique kicked out Blindspot because she didn't trust her. Sadly, Blindspot used her memory-altering powers to erase Rogue's memory of her first real friend.
23 Her Relationship With Colossus
Despite the fact that she can't touch anyone, Rogue has been involved in a number of romantic relationships. Her most well-known paramour is fellow southerner Gambit, but at one point she and teammate Colossus started to go together. This was after Rogue discovered the Colossus wasn't affected by her powers while in his metal-skinned form. But Colossus has his own complicated feelings about his metal-skinned form and the relationship didn't last for very long. Rogue went back to Gambit and Colossus went back to his long-time crush Kitty Pride. Probably for the best, Rogue and Gambit just got hitched.
22 The Supervillain Made From Her DNA
Mad Science gets crazy ya'll. Just look at Pandemic, the supervillain made from Rogue's DNA. Originally this guy was just Dr. Richard Palance, a friend of Professor X's, who stole a sample of Rogue's DNA while helping her to control her powers. He spliced it into himself thinking it could make him immortal. It didn't, but did give him her ability to absorb mutant powers. After amassing several, Palance started calling himself Pandemic and lured the X-Men to his lab so he could steal Rogue's power permanently. This also didn't work.
21 Memory Absorption
When she touches someone, Rogue doesn't only absorb their powers. She also takes a bit of their memories too. Think back to the first X-Men movie where she touched Wolverine. Rogue got a flash of his jumbled memories in her own mind along with his healing factor.
She can't control which memories she gets though.
Getting those memories can be traumatic for her, as they'll stick around in her brain for a little while afterward. It's one of the reasons Rogue is so delicate about never accidentally touching people. The experience can be as bad for her as it for them.
20 Stealing Her Boyfriend's Ex's Memories
Rogue and Gambit's relationship has been tumultuous, to say the least. His dark and shadowy past certainly doesn't help things. Which is why when the X-Men were helping his ex-girlfriend Bella Donna with an alien invasion (just go with it), Rogue did something she never does.
She touched Bella Donna to take her memories.
This ended up giving Bella Donna amnesia and when Rogue learned about Gambit's criminal past, she broke off their relationship. It was a low point for both women. Bella Donna eventually regained her memory and swore vengeance on Rogue, feeling the hero had violated her privacy.
19 She Remembers Every Power She's Absorbed
Part of Rogue's training with the X-Men was about helping her to control her powers better. At first, this just meant being able to turn them on and off. But later, they moved on to expanding her power's scope. With a jumpstart from the psychic abilities of fellow X-Man Sage, Rogue was able to remember every power she'd absorbed in the past. And further, she could call upon them at command. Unfortunately, it was only a temporary boost as the increased power soon shorted out Rogue's nervous system. Still, she's developed her powers since then and it's believed that she could reach this point again. All the memories are still in her head.
18 Taking On The Physical Characteristics Of People She's Absorbed
One of the more interesting mutations of Rogue's absorption ability is that she's started taking on the physical characteristics of the people she's touched. Depending on the power she's borrowed, she'll start to look like the person she borrowed it from when she uses it. So if she uses Nightcrawler's teleportation, she'll turn blue. She'll grow bone claws when using Wolverine's powers. Sometimes when using multiple powers, she'll look like a mish-mash of everyone she got them from. It's not just mutants either. After absorbing the Hulk's powers, she turned green and muscular. It leads to some wild visuals.
17 Protected Against Psychics
Rogue's powers have a lot of side-effects, both for her and the people she touches. But one side-effect she wasn't even aware of at first is how it protects her against psychics. Professor X discovered this when he was helping her control her powers. See Rogue also absorbs a bit of a person's psyche when she touches them, that bit of psyche still hangs around in her brain afterward. Because of that, psychics have trouble reading her mind because of all the past absorptions still in her head. They can't cut through the mental white noise.
16 Permanent Absorption
Another reason Rogue has to be careful with how long she touches someone is that if she touches for too long, her absorption will be permanent. She'll always have their powers in addition to her own. This most famously happened with Ms. Marvel, but has occurred with a few others as well. Usually for it to be permanent, the person she's absorbing has to be incredibly powerful in the first place. It does vary though. Once Rogue tried absorbing the Juggernaut's power, but he had so much of it that what would have been permanent with anyone else didn't even slow him down.
15 People She's Absorbed Taking Over Her Body
When Rogue absorbs someone's life-force, she doesn't just take their powers. She also takes a bit of their psyche too, usually their memories. This isn't a problem most of the time, but it can be dangerous if she absorbs too much.
If she does, that person's psyche could take over Rogue's body.
This happened with Ms. Marvel's psyche for a long time, resulting in an almost split personality. She would even call herself Carol Danvers when that psyche was in control. Magneto eventually helped Rogue expunge the Ms. Marvel psyche, but others like Mr. Sinister have tried doing it since.
14 Her Powers Work On Non-Mutants
You'd think with how mutant-focused X-Men stories usually are, Rogue's absorption powers would only work on fellow mutants. But nope, they work on pretty much everybody. Including other heroes and villains. Rogue's absorbed the powers and abilities of The Captain, Thor, She-Hulk, and Spider-Man among many others.
Heck, her powers even extend to non-humans.
She's been shown absorbing a bunch of different aliens as well, though with less than stellar results. Aliens seem to hurt Rogue, like when the Brood Queen dominated her mind or when the Silver Surfer knocked her out with the sheer amount of power he had.
13 Her Seventh Sense
One of many abilities Rogue permanently absorbed from Ms. Marvel was a "seventh sense," a kind of limited precognition. This wasn't full-on being able to see the future, more just being able to sense where attacks would come from next or where enemies would move in battle.
Like Spider-Man's Spider-sense.
Rogue used it to predict where Nightcrawler would teleport to next while fighting him. This seventh sense wasn't very reliable though. Unlike the other powers she gained from Ms. Marvel, this one faded over time.
12 Turning Her Powers Off
Part of Rogue's tragedy was that her powers were always on. She could never touch someone else without absorbing a bit of their life-force and memories. So she could never touch anyone at all, hence her skin-covering costumes.
But this turned out not to be the case.
Professor X discovered using his telepathic powers that Rogue had been so intensely affected by her power's first manifestation, she put in a mental block to keep herself from using them fully. With his help, Rogue overcame this block and could finally turn her powers off. For a little while at least.
11 The Longer The Touch, The Stronger The Power
One of the key aspects of Rogue that keeps her from getting too powerful is the limit of her absorption. She has to touch someone, make actual skin-to-skin physical contact, to absorb their powers and memories. The longer she holds contact, the longer she can use the borrowed power and the stronger it will be. Rogue has to be careful though. If she maintains contact too long, she could drain too much of the person she's touching's life-force and put them into a coma. Or certain cases, end their life completely.
One of the few people whose powers Rogue has permanently absorbed is Sunfire. A Japanese mutant and long-time ally of the X-Men, Sunfire's abilities were collecting solar radiation in his body and converting it into plasma he could shoot from his hands. It also let him fly somehow.
This is a sad case though.
Rogue didn't want to permanently absorb Sunfire's powers. They were on the Uncanny Avengers team together and during a battle, Sunfire pushed himself to the limit. He made her absorb his power and seemed to pass on afterward. Rogue felt guilty about this.
9 Wonder Man Was Living Inside Her
Rogue's permanent absorption is usually bad for most people but Wonder Man isn't most people. While facing off against a threat called the Celestial Executioner, Wonder Man allowed Rogue to absorb all of his power to give her a boost in battle. Normally, this would end someone's life. But Wonder Man was made of pure ionic energy. So Rogue just absorbed all of him and he survived fine, his psyche living in her head for a while. He eventually found a way out but some of his ionic energy was permanently absorbed by Rogue, giving her an increased power boost.
8 Spontaneous Manifestations
As mentioned, Rogue absorbing the powers of aliens usually doesn't go well for her. Such was the case when she absorbed the Skrull Z'Cann. Skrulls are natural shapeshifters and some can even mimic superpowers. So when Rogue absorbed his powers, she took his mimicry. This had the unfortunate side-effect of making past powers she'd absorbed manifest outside of her control. All the memories of those past powers were still in her head. Rogue tried, but couldn't master the Skrull shapeshifting and mimicry. Mental blocks had to be put in her mind to keep powers from manifesting subconsciously.
7 Wolverine And Cyclops' Powers
Part of the aftermath of the whole Skrull debacle was that Rogue was able to limit her spontaneous power manifestations. Specifically, she managed to limit it to just Cyclops and Wolverine's powers, two she could control.
They were kind of appropriate choices.
Wolverine had been a mentor to Rogue when she'd first joined the X-Men, like he had for many young women that joined the team. And Cyclops is the X-Men's longtime leader and moral center. He freely gave Rogue his powers to use as a sign of trust in her. Claws and eye beams? A good combo.
6 Putting Her Crush Into A Coma
In the X-Men comics, mutant powers often manifest for the first time during teenage years. These can be traumatic for some people, Rogue among them. The first time her absorption power manifested was when she was kissing her first crush, a boy named Cody. She had no idea what was going on as she started to absorb his life-force and memories. She accidentally put Cody into a coma. Rogue was so shaken by the incident, she ran away from home and wound up being adopted by Mystique. Later as an X-Man, she found Cody still comatose and apologized for her actions.
5 Her Instant Ending Touch
Something Rogue has to be very careful about is how long she touches someone to absorb their power. If she's not, she could end up draining too much out of them. Usually, this puts them in a coma. But the supervillain Pandemic made it much worse. By exposing Rogue to a virus called Strain 88, Pandemic made it so her touch was capable of draining so much of a person it ended their life. This made Rogue even more wary of accidentally touching anyone. Thankfully, she would soon lose this power after over-exerting it on an alien weapon.
4 Rom Spaceknight Changed Her Life
Rogue started out as a villain in the comics. There were a number of factors that saw her turn to the good side, but one Marvel can't even mention anymore. It happened when Mystique's Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, including Rogue, encountered the alien cyborg hero Rom Spaceknight.
Rogue attempted to absorb some of Rom's powers.
Instead, she absorbed some of his noble personality. Doing so made Rogue re-examine her life and decisions, ultimately having her make a face turn. Unfortunately, Marvel can't reprint this story. Rom Spaceknight was a licensed toy character and they lost that license long ago.
3 Absorbing Knowledge And Skills
Powers aren't the only thing Rogue can absorb from a person. If necessary, she can also absorb specialized knowledge and skills if she focuses. Like in one issue, she was able to perform surgery using knowledge she had absorbed from a doctor. Or when she used her power to instantly learn ninja skills to fight off the Hand. This ability is probably an extension of Rogue's taking a few people's memories when she absorbs them. Being able to absorb such precise knowledge took some training, as she's had difficulty with this in the past.
2 She's A Street Fighter (Yes, As In The Games)
A curious example of Rogue's ability to copy other people's powers is in the X-Men vs. Street Fighter and Marvel vs. Capcom games. In those, if she touches any of the Street Fighter characters than she can steal their signature moves.
So Hadoukens, Shoryukens, and even M. Bison's Psycho Blast? Rogue can do them.
We're guessing this is just Rogue absorbing those characters' knowledge of how to do them. Because it took Ryu and Ken years to master performing them on their own. Gotta say, that's a handy way to learn martial arts fast.
1 Curing Herself Via Vampire Dinosaur Man
Of all the mutants willing to have their powers removed, Rogue has always been near the forefront. Given that she couldn't control them for a long time, leaving her isolated, it makes sense. What doesn't make sense is one way she went about curing herself. Rogue decided to pick a fight with X-Men villain Sauron, who is a pterodactyl man who absorbs people's life-force.
Yes, he is a vampire dinosaur.
She seemed to think that because their powers were similar, they'd burn out each other's energy. How that works, we're not sure, but we're not sure why Sauron made himself a dinosaur either.