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Magneto & Polaris Have Their Own Version of Daredevil's Sonar 'Vision'

This article contains spoilers for X-Men #5.

The X-Men's Magneto and Polaris secretly possess their own version of Daredevil's "radar sense." Superheroes come in all manner of shapes and sizes, and there's an almost endless diversity to their superpowers. Some of the most interesting heroes possess additional senses; Spider-Man has his preternatural spider-sense, Daredevil has his famous radar sense, and many Marvel heroes have a strange degree of "cosmic awareness" that allows them to sense what's going on in the wider universe.

Comic books are a visual medium, which means these super-senses are naturally rendered in artistic ways. Spider-Man's spider-sense is typically displayed as slashed lines above his forehead, while Daredevil's radar sense is frequently shown in creative hatched lines. Cosmic awareness is the most difficult of them all, because artists have never really managed to figure out a way to render that. Usually, characters are simply shown staring into the distance before making remarkable pronouncements of events taking place in a distant star system.

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X-Men #5, by Gerry Duggan, Javier Pina and Ze Carlos reveals two mutants possess a secret sixth sense of their own. The issue sees Polaris, the daughter of Magneto who shares his powers, incapacitated by a powerful flash grenade. She's completely blinded - but it turns out that isn't an effective way to deal with the Mistress of Magnetism. "I... underestimated you," Polaris tells her opponents. "You actually have a brain in that head... but so do I. I don't just see the world with my eyes... I see it on the electromagnetic spectrum. I see the iron in your blood... and the metal fillings in your teeth."

Again, because comics are a visual medium, the concept of Polaris being able to "see" thanks to the metal surrounding her is rendered visually when no doubt she doesn't really experience it as sight at all. Polaris is much more likely sensing the world in a way more akin to Matt Murdock's sonar sense. The idea is a fascinating one, a logical extension of Magneto's powers in Fox's X-Men films, where he manipulated the iron in people's blood.

Polaris' powers are inherited from her father, although he is more powerful than she is; he's an Omega level mutant, defined as "a mutant whose dominant power is deemed to register -- or reach -- an undefinable upper limit of that power's specific classification." Thus it's reasonable to assume this new electromagnetic sense is a power the two share, and indeed it fits with many scenes over the decades where Magneto has seemed almost supernaturally aware of what's going on around him. It seems the X-Men's Master and Mistress of Magnetism both possess a secret ability that's never been fully on display before - one that gives them a remarkable edge.

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