How Powerful Is Gambit from Marvel Comics?

This Ragin’ Cajun made a massive impact on comic book fans in the ’90s, and he’s making fans hoot and holler still. While a character doesn’t have to be all-powerful for fans to love them (here’s to you, Glob!) it’s always interesting to learn each character’s true potential. Of all the X-Men, there’s no one with better potential than Gambit. After all, his ability lets him change potential energy.

In March, Rogue & Gambit #1 hits the shelves. To prepare us for Gambit’s next adventures, let’s pull up a chair and deal the cards on just how powerful Marvel’s Remy Etienne LeBeau really is.

Alpha Level

Remy LeBeau was born with extraordinary mutant abilities. He has the ability to transform energy itself. Most commonly, he changes any potential energy in an object into kinetic energy. Gambit can charge up any object with energy, and make it explode with exponential force. That mutation puts him in the second highest power ranking among mutants: Alpha Level.

In addition to his paramour Rogue, you’ll never catch Gambit without a deck of cards in his pocket — especially since they’re his most common weapon! He throws cards with such speed and power that they can slice through metal. If he charges up his staff, he can make a crater-sized impact in the ground. Remy’s been known to have hypnotic charm, shuffling hearts just like he shuffles his cards. Still, he’s got to be touching objects to charge them up with kinetic energy. If he’s not making physical contact, he can’t do anything at all.

Even now, as an Alpha-Level mutant, Gambit’s powers continue to grow and expand. In Excalibur #16, Rictor taught him to consider what other types of energy he could manipulate beyond kinetic energy. Remy suggests mutant energy, implying that he can feel the very source of mutants’ powers. Even more interesting is when Rictor suggests that he focus on magical energy instead … and he does.

Still, even knowing that he can tap into other forms of energy, Gambit’s powers are severely limited. In fact, Gambit limited his powers intentionally.

Omega Level

When he was just a boy, Gambit realized that he couldn’t fully control his powers. He couldn’t keep up with them, and he was scared that he would hurt other people. That’s why young Remy sought out a skilled surgeon by the name of Nathaniel Essex. Mr. Sinister, ever-obsessed with mutant genetics and abilities, was more than pleased to perform the operation.

But when an alternate version of Gambit arrived on Earth-616, Remy needed his full power back. Mr. Sinister performed the surgery, though it was hundreds of years in the past. However, he was able to extend his biokinetic abilities to travel back to the present. This is only one small part of his strength.

To truly understand Gambit’s potential, we can look at his alternate version: New Sun. The alternate Remy never underwent surgery to limit his powers, and so his powers got out of control. He became a being of pure energy, with the ability to control energy in any form. In fact, he didn’t even need to see an object to imbue it with kinetic energy or change the very way it functions and moves. Energy in every form was at his disposal; he could even fly and control momentum. New Sun was so powerful that he destroyed his entire Earth and everyone on it, and even defeated The Phoenix. His powers of controlling all kinetic energy allowed him to completely stop Archangel from flying towards him without a second thought.

While New Sun was powerful beyond compare, clearly more powerful than every being on his Earth, our Gambit was strong enough to best him in battle. Earth-616 Gambit defeated New Sun with not only his power but his creativity. Unfortunately, in doing so, he overcharged himself and returned to his Alpha power level. Though that might not be forever.

Beyond Omega Level

New Sun pushed his own powers further than ever. He explained that he tried “to remake time, and control the flow of kinetic energy from the standpoint of time instead of space.” But New Sun was only trying to make himself more powerful. On the other hand, New Sun explains that Remy is naturally connected to such abilities.

He says that ever so briefly, Remy was connected to the ultimate expression of his abilities. According to New Sun, when Sinister restored Remy’s powers, he “became an expression of the kinetic flow of the universe — of which time is but one facet.” That was how he traveled into the present again.

New Sun implies that Remy has the true ability to connect with motion across space and time, not just moving molecules in space and giving objects momentum but moving objects through time and changing the momentum of history itself. Though we’ve never seen Gambit use these powers on the page, New Sun reveals that time is just one minuscule “facet” of possibility and power. Our Gambit might be even more powerful than that.

Considering the shocking events of Knights of X, there’s still plenty of power to uncover within Remy LeBeau — especially since he has a long history as one of the Four Horsemen of Apocalypse. There’s no telling what his powers will do next especially in his upcoming book with Rogue.

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