Forge is a fictional character in the , a superhero associated with The X-Men. Created by writer Chris Claremont and artist John Romita Jr., he first appeared in Uncanny X-Men #184 (August 1984).
A mutant with an unsurpassed brilliance in technology, Forge has had a lengthy career as a government weapons contractor. He shared a romantic relationship with Storm, and a brief affair with Emma Frost which led him to associate with the X-Men, beefing-up the technology at the X-Mansion. He was also a member of the Pentagon-funded mutant group X-Factor.
Fictional character biography
Forge is a mutant with an innate
superhuman talent for invention
- an intuitive genius
, it is as natural as breathing for him. He is a Native American
of the Cheyenne
nation. Although he was trained as a medicine man
, he has primarily relied upon technology
rather than mysticism
to accomplish his tasks. This rift between Forge and his elder teacher, Naze, made Forge leave his past behind and join the military.
While in the army, Forge became a good soldier and served in the Vietnam War. After rising in the ranks to become a sergeant, he was asked by S.H.I.E.L.D. to join. Forge declined, because he saw his need was in Vietnam. During his second tour of duty in the war, his commander was killed by enemy troops; in anger, he used their spirits to summon a band of demons to destroy the opposition. Forge, concerned about his former comrades, decided to order a B-52 bombing on his position to close the portal from the world of the unliving. The bombs came down destroying the spirits. This action wasn't without a heavy price, as Forge lost his right leg and right hand. This action allowed the demon called the Adversary to come to Earth and Forge has since been hesitant to employ his mystical abilities.
Years later, Forge had created cybernetic replacements for his lost limbs. When Tony Stark stopped making advanced weaponry for the Federal government, Forge was hired as an employee of the Defense Department.
One of his earliest commissions was to design a weapon to detect the shape-shifting aliens, known as the Dire Wraiths. Subsequently, Forge constructed a device capable of neutralizing mutant powers. Following orders from the President, Henry Peter Gyrich, an agent of the National Security Council, took the device. Forge protested because the device was untested and it was extremely dangerous to use. The device was to be used against a member of the X-Men, named Rogue, who was wanted for allegedly killing a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent. However, the device instead removed the powers of her teammate, Storm.
Forge rescued Storm, after she fell into a river. Forge brought her back to his home, in Dallas, Texas
. During her stay, Storm began to have a romantic connection with Forge. Yet, Storm began to hold Forge in contempt, when she found out he was the reason she lost her abilities. Storm left and rejoined the X-Men. Storm later returned to Forge, to help him fight the Dire Wraiths. The Dire Wraiths resurfaced to prevent Forge from perfecting his neutralizer and they were defeated by the combined forces of the X-Men, Magik
and Amanda Sefton
Forge later improved his Neutralizer, against the Wraiths. Yet, he became hesitant to design more devices like it because of what happened with Storm. With the help of the Wraiths' enemy, Rom the Spaceknight, Forge was able to create a large scale version of the neutralizer in Earth's orbit. Rom and Forge used the device on the Wraith's home-world, casting the entire race into the other-dimensional Limbo.
After saving the world, Forge destroyed all remaining Neutralizers and focused on ridding the Earth of the Adversary once and for all. The Adversary had other plans though and in the shape of Naze convinced Storm that Forge had gone insane with grief after she left and was planning to open a gate to hell. Storm tried to kill Forge, but the moment she stabbed him she saw that he was sane and that she had been tricked. The Adversary banished Storm and Forge to another dimension, devoid of human life. Storm and Forge spent an unknown amount of time there, rekindling their romance. Finally they decided to return to Earth to stop the Adversary. Forge restored Storm's abilities and used her abilities to power a gate back home.
Forge and Storm arrived on Earth and joined the X-Men in their battle with the Adversary. In the X-Men's final battle with the Adversary, Forge was required to sacrifice
nine willing lives to banish the Adversary forever; eight X-Men and Madelyne Pryor
volunteered and died in the casting of Forge's spell
. However, the goddess Roma
intervened and secretly restored the X-Men to life. Seeing Forge responsible for the death of her brother, Forge battled Magik
using his knowledge of Native-American sorcery. Feeling guilty over his involvement, Forge allowed Magik to stab him with her Soulsword
in the hopes it would kill him. Instead its effects caused both mutants to come to terms with their shortcomings.
Forge, unaware of their resurrection, found himself fighting alongside Mystique
's Freedom Force
and an interim team of "X-Men" against the Reavers
at Muir Island
. He was essential in winning the battle, having used his mutant skills to create a rifle that deactivated the cyborg enemy 'Skullbuster' and forced the rest of the Reavers to retreat. During this battle, Destiny
was killed, but not before foreseeing
that Forge and Mystique would one day love one another, a fact that both parties found implausible. Afterwards, Mystique blamed him for Destiny's death.
Banshee approached Forge, hunting for leads about the whereabouts of the X-Men. Forge was convinced by visions that all the X-Men were still alive. During this time, his days as a soldier in the Vietnam War were depicted. The two of them traveled all over the world looking for their missing friends. Forge and Banshee eventually found the X-Men and became full time members. They fought against several threats, such as Genoshan soldiers, Skrulls and the Shadow King. The fight against the Skrulls was Forge's first trip into outer space. Forge's skills were critical in defeating Cameron Hodge and overthrowing the Genoshan government. His plans were kept deep inside his own mind by a self-induced trance that even the forced removal of his false limbs did not break.
Forge later became a member of the X-Mansion's "support team". He was responsible for redesigning the Danger Room and the Blackbird jet.
End of romance
With the arrival of Bishop
and Storm's constant involvement with the team, Forge and Storm's relationship became rocky. Forge came to eventually leave the X-Men, when he believed that Storm would've rejected his proposal of marriage. Ironically, she would have said yes. The pair continued to have an on-again-off-again relationship, until it ended for good. Forge went back home to Dallas to become a government contractor again and to help with the mental care of Emma Frost. During her stay, Forge and Emma Frost grew closer and had an affair.
Forge went on to become the new government liaison, replacing Valerie Cooper
, with the mutant superhero team X-Factor
. Forge went on his second cosmic adventure, venturing to the far side of the sun with dozens of other superheroes in the incident known as the Infinity Crusade
. Forge was personally affected as one of his team, Wolfsbane, has been kidnapped by the villain called the Goddess. The adventure was very anti-climatic for Forge, as he ended up orbiting a duplicate Earth in an escape pod, along with the vigilante Nomad. He did wish to fight but his pod was needed as part of a communications chain.
When the team began to experience personal problems, Forge took a more active involvement in the team. In this context, he saw the mutant criminals Mystique and Sabretooth forced unwillingly onto the team.
During this time former X-Factor member Strong Guy awoke from a coma due to over-stress on his heart. Forge created a device which saved his life.
Forge helped the team go underground after they were tricked into hunting and battling Multiple Man, an old friend.
Forge also came to terms with his heritage when the Adversary returned. Forge and Naze were able to defeat him. Forge and Mystique became more attracted to one another and fell in love. This did not prevent Mystique from escaping. X-Factor was later disbanded and Forge was no longer active in any mutant groups.
Forge later took part in Xavier's Underground movement. He worked with a former X-Factor member, Multiple Man
, in Genosha. Afterwards, Forge returned to the X-Men and became a mentor to Danielle Moonstar
, for a brief stint.
Recently, Charles Xavier asked him for help in locating Mystique whom he needed for a clandestine mission. Forge also helped Cannonball and Siryn find Cable with the aid of Deadpool and built a pair of special gauntlets for New X-Men team member Surge; afterwards, he returned to his lab to build a Nimrod unit with the primary objective of protecting mutants and secondary objective of protecting humans. He then encountered a time-traveling Nimrod suffering from severe damage, demanding that Forge fix him; this version of Nimrod came from an alternate future, and had compelled an alternate version of Forge (married to Storm, with two children) to build a device to allow it to travel to the past. The alternate Forge had seemingly complied, but actually built a device to send Nimrod not only back in time, but also to another timeline, and to disable him upon arrival. Nimrod threatened to harm this reality's Storm, and Forge offered to transfer Nimrod into his own version of the Sentinel, which Nimrod agreed to. The transfer was interrupted by the arrival of Surge and the rest of the New X-Men, who had received Forge's distress call through Surge's own gauntlets; in the ensuing battle, Forge helped them defeat Nimrod.
After Forge sends Madrox and Layla to the future, he goes on a mission at Cyclops' behest to rendezvous with the other X-Men, who are on their way to confront Sinister's forces. He is shot by a seemingly treacherous Bishop. He is then seen in the recovery room along with other injured X-Men.
X-Men: Divided We Stand
Forge has not been the same since Bishop attacked him during his mad quest to murder the first mutant child following M-Day. Forge suffered an array of injuries including serious head trauma. Bishop stole several time travel devices that Forge was reverse engineering. Throughout his recovery, Forge has been obsessed with recreating his notes and research on these devices. Fixated to an unhealthy degree on this project, Forge shuts himself off in his home at Eagle Plaza to devote all his time to this work. But before he begins, he enhances his home’s defense systems to ensure that he never falls victim to such an attack again.
Age of Apocalypse
In the Age of Apocalypse
, Forge was a member of Magneto's X-Men. He left them to go his own way and became the founder and leader of the Outcasts, an anti-Apocalypse resistance cell of mutants in the disguise of a traveling theatre group. The Outcasts' consisted of Sauron
, and Mastermind
, and later Sonique
, who is rescued by the group from the Infinites during their attack on a train. He became a father figure to Nate Grey
, and also his trainer, teaching him how to combat without using his powers. When the Outcasts were attacked by Domino
and her henchmen Caliban
, Forge attempted to distract them with a Flash Grenade and later in the battle personally killed Grizzly. Forge was eventually killed by Sinister, who had been masquerading as a member of the Outcasts called Essex.
Here Comes Tomorrow
In the apocalyptic alternate future of Here Comes Tomorrow
, the final arc of Grant Morrison
's run of New X-Men
, a British Mutant under the name Smith had taken Forge's alias, the Maker. Though his powers and his relation to Forge, if any, are unknown, he bore some physical resemblance to the former Maker, and also carried numerous mechanical tools.
House of M
Forge is seen in House of M
as a scientist working under Tony Stark, Iron Man
. He is one of Stark's most trusted employees and is one of the first to learn that he is truly Iron Man. He utilizes his skills in technology and computers by aiding Jarvis
and Stark in tracking down the mutant gene bombs that Johnny Storm
and Stark are hunting down all of the city.
Hulk: Future Imperfect
In the mini-series Hulk: Future Imperfect
, describing an alternate timeline where the Hulk becomes the Maestro, the Maestro claims that Forge created a weapon specifically designed to kill the Maestro, but that the Maestro killed him before the weapon could be used. The present-day Hulk would later encounter Forge using just such a weapon.
Forge appears in Marvel Zombies
alongside Magneto's Acolytes
as one of few survivors who were hiding on Asteroid M
from the hordes of zombie superheroes
on Earth. He constructs artificial limbs for the Black Panther
after the zombie Giant-Man
consumes some of his original ones. Forge becomes close friends with Black Panther, and Forge's daughter later marries Black Panther's son and the couple later conceives a child. After the Panther's and Forge's children die under a mysterious circumstances (later revealed that to have been murdered by Malcolm Cortez), both friends becomes closer through their shared tragedy, and help to raise their grandson together.
During the former heroes' forty years of absence, Forge anticipates that the zombies would return. He makes improvements to Reed Richards' and Tony Stark's technologies for defenses of the colony New Wakanda, such as the Avengers' force field projector and Iron Man's armors. The interdimensional transporter is the only technology Forge is unable to rebuild, and it is later revealed that Fabian Cortez's son, Malcolm, has sabotaged it by removing some of its key components. Forge donned one of the Iron Man armors when the zombies has return, and after an extensive battle, the zombies and the colonists begin a truce after the returning zombies' hunger has faded. After Cortez teleports the zombies to another dimension in order to sieze power within the colony, Cortez beats Forge after discovering what has happened.
Mutant X universe
In the Mutant X
comic, Forge was a traitor to mutant-kind. As punishment, Bloodstorm used him as a source of blood to feed upon. He cooperates with this, feeling guilty for his previous crimes. His only other 'ally' is a brainwashed Shadowcat.
In the alternate reality of X-Men: Ronin
, the X-Men are superheroes based out of Japan. Forge is a Japanese police officer with an attraction to Storm. He also helps build and pilot an array of robots called Sentinel Force
which are sent against the X-Men.
In the Ultimate Marvel
continuity, Forge has been dramatically re-imagined. He became a member of the Brotherhood of Mutants
and follows Magneto
with the promise of getting to strike back at humans. It's somewhat implied that it was humans who caused him to lose his arm and leg, and this is his way of getting revenge.
Magneto ordered Forge to invent a machine that would enhance his abilities to an extreme point (as the Professor's Cerebro does for telepaths), a point where he would be able to kill every human on Earth. Forge, slightly naive, agreed to build it, the promise of Magneto's offer of ownership of Canada and a hate-free world blinding him. It was only at the final stages of his machine that he realized what he was truly doing - about to slaughter millions of people. He attempts to confront Magneto about this, telling him that he was under the impression that Magneto would only terrorize the humans. Magneto replies that in the start of a new nation, one must make sacrifices and coldly asks Forge if he is hesitating. Forge assures him no; he is later seen depressed and angry.
In the 'Magnetic North' storyline it is revealed that he was freed from prison by Mystique. As a pair, they frame Lorna Dane with one of Forge's devices. It causes her powers to malfunction, killing dozens of innocent people. Later, Forge does nothing as Mystique snaps the neck of a female police officer and assumes her form. As part of a carefully thought out plan, Forge and Mystique later personally attack the Triskelion; the headquarters for the Ultimates and a supervillain prison. They kill dozens of S.H.I.E.L.D. soldiers during the attack and even more die cleaning up the prison break which results.
Seemingly taken into custody, Forge nevertheless appears with Magneto later in the Savage Land.
Powers and abilities
Forge is a mutant
with a superhuman intuitive
talent for inventing mechanical devices, backed up by the ability to visually perceive mechanical energy
in action. This power allows him to instinctively recognize the potential and functional uses of any machine or technological device in his visual range, a skill that combined with his natural intelligence gives him the ability to conceive, design and build highly-advanced mechanical devices; and operate, modify and disassemble existing technology or create countermeasures for it. Forge's superhuman talent for invention does not mean that he is of a superhuman intellect, even a genius
at invention must for the most part consciously work out the theoretical principles behind the invention and then the design of the invention itself through a series of logical steps. In Forge's case, however, many of these logical steps are worked out by his subconscious
mind. Hence, Forge himself might not be entirely aware of exactly how he figured out how to create an invention of his. Sometimes, he must disassemble a device he has made to even figure out how it works.
Forge wore synthetic stretch fabric backed by micro-thin bulletproof Kevlar and thermal insulation while a member of the X-Men. He sometimes employs devices of his own invention. Most notable among these was his Neutralizer gun that could suppress superhuman mutant abilities. The only known examples of this device have been destroyed. Forge has also invented a hand-held scanning device that can detect the presence of superhuman beings or aliens.
Forge has knowledge of many scientific and technological fields.
He also possesses various mystical abilities such as spell casting through mystical training, though he rarely uses these. He possesses extensive knowledge of Native American magic.
His bionic left hand and right leg often contain concealed weapons and devices that he can use in combat. In addition, they can be outfitted with computer interfaces and plasma blasters. His skill as a hand-to-hand combatant and as a marksman from his military training were so impressive that Nick Fury offered him a job with S.H.I.E.L.D.
In other media
- Forge guest starred in a few episodes of the X-Men animated series. He is unique in that he has two separate roles in the show: In the present, he is the leader of the government-run X-Factor, and in the future, he leads the mutant team that resists the Sentinels in the Days of Future Past timeline. He was voiced by Marc Strange.
- Forge also guest starred in two episodes of the X-Men Evolution animated series: Middleverse and Shadow Dance. This version of Forge was a teenager who talked and dressed like he had been stuck in time since the 1970s, because that's exactly what happened-- one of Forge's inventions had backfired and kept him stuck in a pocket dimension for over twenty years. In this series, Forge had the ability to turn one of his hands into a multi-tooled robotic device- possibly corresponding to the comic versions' prosthetic hand. He is voiced by Samuel Vincent. Mystique under her guise of "Risty" stated that she thought that he was cute as a nod to their comics relationship.
- Forge has been confirmed to appear in Wolverine and the X-Men voiced by Roger Craig Smith. He continues to be the X-Men's engineer, working closely alongside Beast. However, in this series, he is portrayed as being much younger, and a tad scatter-brained, feeling at times overwhelmed by Wolverine's constant and ever shifting demands. His work while advanced and complex, is implied to not always function in the manner it is supposed to.
- He is mentioned in the novelization of the movie X-Men: The Last Stand as the creator of Mystique's mobile prison.
- Forge first appears in the X-Men Dimensions series in X-Men Dimensions 2. His role is small, considering her doesn't appear until the end of the book, along with Bishop. He will return for X-Men Dimensions 3, with his comic book love triangle between him, Storm and Mystique being a subplot in the story.
List of titles
- Alpha Flight Vol. 1 #88-90
- Bishop Vol. 1 #1-2
- ''Excalibur Vol. 1 #76, 79-80 & 82
- Fantastic Four Annual #23
- Generation X #47
- Mystique #1-3, 7, 10-12, 21-24
- Storm Vol 1 #1 & 3
- Uncanny X-Men #185-188, 224-227, 253-255, 257-264, 270, 272-280, 282-284, 286-290, 299-302, 306, 308, 310, 339, 384, 388 & 425-426
- Uncanny X-Men Annual #15 & 1999
- Wolverine Vol. 2 #51
- X-Factor Vol. 1 #57-58, 60-62, 69-70, 92-99, 101-102, 106-130, 132-141 & 145
- X-Factor Annual #5 & 9
- X-Force Vol. 1 #27, 35 & 38
- X-Men vol. 2, #1-5, 8, 25, 30 & 102-103
- X-Men Annual 2000
- X-Men: Prime
- X-Men: Unlimited Vol. 1 #4, 5 & 29
- Uncanny X-Men #186 (October 1984); "Lifedeath" - Forge helps Storm with her bout of depression, after losing her powers.
- Uncanny X-Men #263 (Early July 1990); "The Lower Depths" - Forge faces what he did in Vietnam.
- Uncanny X-Men #289 - #290 (June 1992 - July 1992); "Knots" - "Frayed" - Forge asks Storm to marry him, but leaves the X-Men.