Black Mutants Rock: Angel Salvadore

Comic book fans got a taste of Angel Salvadore in 2011’s X-Men: First Class. The mutant human-fly was played by Zoe Kravitz, but the nuances of her character weren’t showcased as much as they are in the actual X-Men comic books. Angel Salvadore, also known as Tempest, first appeared in the New X-Men #118 (November 2001). She is part of the newer crop of X-Men in the comics whereas X-Men: First Class took place in the 1960’s.

Angel Salvadore, not to be confused with Angel/ArchAngel (Warren Worthington III), first began to manifest her mutant powers when she was around 14 and was driven out of her home as a result. She has insect wings and fly-like tendencies like sleeping in a cocoon, and digesting her food like a fly, which gives her the ability to spit acid. She eventually loses her original powers and becomes technologically modified, which gives her the ability to generate ice, heat and fire from her hands. She also loses her wings but maintains the ability to fly through the modifications but let us take it back to her journey as an X-Men.

The manifestation of her mutant powers did not go over well. Not only was she kicked out of her house, but she was also attacked by U-Men, a group of humans who sought to harvest mutant body parts to graft onto themselves. Angel was rescued by Wolverine and taken to the Xavier Institute where she enrolls. Angel doesn’t fit in well at first because people felt like she had an attitude problem, but Emma Frost eventually takes her under her wing.

Angel starts working with the X-Men to defeat foes as part of the “Special Class,” and she even falls in love with her classmate, Beak. Angel gets pregnant by Beak and because of her fly physiology, her pregnancy rate is accelerated. She lays eggs in Wolverine’s old shack in secret but fears that her secret will be revealed and she will be expelled.

Angel’s secret obviously gets discovered. Bishop and Sage end up finding her with her six newly hatched offspring. We all know it is not Xavier’s style to expel Angel and Beak. However, what ends up happening next is that Xorn, the teacher of the “Special Class,” believes himself to be Magneto reincarnated and plans to continue his mission to create a mutant society. He brainwashed his class, including Angel and Beak, into doing his bidding as part of the Brotherhood of Mutants.

That doesn’t last long as Angel and Beak overcome their mind control and rejoin the X-Men. They move their kids into the same cabin in the woods where Angel initially laid her eggs and live a happy domestic life as teen parents while still attending school. Their happy home life does not last long as life takes them on a series of adventures including M-Day, which causes them both to lose their powers, and respective bird-like and insect-like physiologies (while five of their six children are also depowered). They make the best of life without powers by getting married and having one more baby the traditional way. Eventually, the chance to become heroes again comes along when they join a team called the New Warriors. Angel starts going by the code name, “Tempest,” and gets her new set of genetically modified powers (as does Beak). Angel and Beak’s time with the New Warriors is short-lived due to group mistrust and major events that cause the deaths of certain team members. The group is disbanded but Angel and Beak keep their technologically enhanced powers and a new outlook on life, which is that they do not need powers to make a difference in the world.

Sources

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angel_Salvadore#Publication_history
https://uncannyxmen.net/characters/salvadore-angel