Send in the clones! In most media, clones are considered, as a rule, to be totally rad. You’ve got the award-winning clone drama on TV’s Orphan Black, and of course the Clone Armies and Wars of the Star Wars franchise. However, amongst the comic book crowd, the word "clone" might as well be four letters. This is in no small part due to Spider-Man’s infamous Clone Saga, a messy, confusing, and convoluted storyline that was meant to only last a few months, but ended up lasting years. Still, there have been dozens of clone-based storylines over the ages, and they can’t all have been bad, can they?
The answer, unsurprisingly, is no. Both Marvel and DC Comics have re-visited the clone well on numerous occasions, and they can still occasionally draw up great stories and characters. Over at Marvel Comics, clones are regaining their reputation thanks to X-23’s starring role in 2017’s Logan. DC had a less successful experience with Doomsday, a partial clone of General Zod, but the fact that they tried shows there is still potential left in the seemingly overused clone trope. Like superheroes themselves, clones of heroes come in all shapes, sizes, and quality of writing. The best, however, definitely have stories worth telling.
StryfePhoto: Marvel Comics
Cable is a character who already had a convoluted and clone-related backstory, and then he went and got cloned himself. Cable is the son of Cyclops and a clone of Jean Grey, who was taken into the future and raised there as a way of dealing with a techno-organic virus.
At some point, Cable was also cloned, and the result was Stryfe, essentially an evil version of the uber-powerful mutant. Stryfe was an X-Men villain for a while before his Cable-esque face was even revealed, and he’s stuck around as a major antagonist ever since.Agree or disagree?
- Photo: DC Comics
Over the years, there have been a lot of versions of Superboy in DC Comics. The original was just a young Superman, and the 2017 version is the son of Clark Kent and Lois Lane. Somewhere in between came Kon-El, who showed up shortly after Superman was thought dead following a battle with Doomsday.
Kon-El, who went by Conner Kent, turned out to be a clone who shared the genetic material of both Superman and Lex Luthor. Despite his half-villainous origins, Kon-El was a hero through and through, and eventually gave his life to save the world.Agree or disagree?
- Photo: DC Comics
“Me am not Bizarro!” Bizarro is either adored or loathed, depending on one’s tolerance for novelty language. Bizarro has shown up in a few different iterations, but he’s usually a horrifically flawed clone of Superman, usually created by Lex Luthor.
Bizarro has most of Superman’s powers, but none of his charm, and he’s pasty white and covered in scars. Worst of all, Bizarro speaks in a halting and dim-witted “opposite language,” where he always says the opposite of what he means. The beginning.Agree or disagree?
Stepford CuckoosPhoto: Marvel Comics
For a while in X-Men continuity, the Stepford Cuckoos were a group of quintuplets who just so happened to have near-identical appearances and the same abilities as Emma Frost. Eventually, however, it was revealed that Sophie, Phoebe, Mindee, Celeste, and Esme were actually clones of Frost created by the Weapon Plus program, the same organization responsible for Wolverine and X-23.
The group of powerful psychics were only informally known as the Cuckoos, and preferred their own codename of Five-In-One. Sadly, that had to later be shortened to Three-In-One when Sophie and Esme were killed in close succession.Agree or disagree?