I don’t think I have to tell anyone who my favorite comic book character is by now, but just in case I don’t fangirl enough for your tastes (and I really have toned down over the years with my fangirlism), my favorite character is Storm.
And if you say, “Of course you like Storm. You’re a black woman,” I will find you and I will cut you. No bullshit.
True, as a woman of color, it is empowering to see other people of color—especially women—in comics with strong roles. And arguably, Storm is probably one of the strongest in that category. However, my love for her extends beyond the color of her skin and into who I perceive her to be as a character.
Now, I’m one of those Storm fans who sees her as a very intricate character rather than just the strong, regal, power all-mother that most people know her as. I’ve often even argued with other Storm fans who feel that some of my views of her don’t fit in with that “mold” of who she is because, as much as I love her for her perfections, I also love her for her flaws.
Yes, she is a powerful woman, and yes, I believe her moral compass is (almost) always true. However, she is still a person, and she’s always been her most interesting to me when she was facing situations that pushed her beyond her status as the goddess, that showed that she still made wrong decisions, that she did things that weren’t wise, that she felt things that maybe she shouldn’t.
One of the things that I often heard from other Storm fans in our arguments was that “she’d never do that.” They especially loved to use that line when anyone suggested that Storm might do something that was less-than-honorable, that might actually make her human.
But I’m a firm believer that you never know what a person would do if you put them in certain situations. Not saying that Storm would just completely lose herself, but Storm has always had a rebellious streak that sometimes made her enjoy and do things that she aren’t Storm-like.
And maybe I shouldn’t just chalk it up to rebellion. This could just be a different side of her that isn’t seen often.
Even though I complain about Storm: The Arena, I did like how they showed that she could revel in brutality if she wanted to, that she could find beauty in even the grotesque. Sure, maybe a lot of that was her frustrations and failures she’d gone through with her team at the time, but this isn’t her only instance.
Some might argue that was extreme (haha, no pun since it happened in X-Treme X-Men), but that wasn’t the first time she’s been out of sorts with her goddess persona—a persona that I sometimes feel is forced on her and leaves little room for her to be anything else.
She had her rebellious Mohawk phase (the scene of her snatching Kitty out of the window with a whirlwind after an argument is still the best thing ever to me). She’s entertained villainous men who’ve desired her (Dr. Doom and Khan just to name two), even when she knew nothing would come of it. She’s been a warrior, an avenging goddess, a thief, a queen, a monster, a sorceress, a temptress… The list could go on and on for me.
And all those things, all those incongruities, are why I love her character. Most people see a goddess. I see a complex character who is more than that.
Besides, tell me this bitch ain't fabulous!