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The reason Marvel is changing the name of X-Men's Oya is surprisingly honest, direct, and all business

This new name for Idie Okonkwo would look good on a t-shirt.

Idie Okonkwo
Image credit: Nick Bradshaw (Marvel Comics)

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Marvel COmics' upcoming linewide relaunch of the X-Men is a back-to-basics approach in almost every respect - familiar names, familiar costumes, and even familiar logos. But one thing that is different from the get-go is one of the X-Men's codenames. We're talking about the X-Man known as Iede Okonkwo, a.k.a. Oya, and now soon-to-be-a.k.a. Temper.

How did Oya - or Temper as she's to be known now - end up in one of Marvel's flagship X-Men books coming this summer? Simple. The writer wanted to - but as it came up, they realized her codename didn't work for the Marvel business.

"... she was quite simply a character that incoming writer Jed MacKay was interested in using," editor Tom Brevoort writes on his Substack, "though we both agreed that she could use a more super hero-sounding code name than Oya, which doesn’t seem like a word that could ever be a successful logo."

Originally introduced by her real name Idie Okonkwo in a 2010 issue of Uncanny X-Men written by Matt Fraction and Kieron Gillen, the character went on to star in the team-book Generation Hope before bouncing around the past decade in various team books inclusing Uncanny X-Men, WOlverin & the X-Men, All-New X-Men, and Sabretooth & the Exiles.

The character's first codename, Oya, was inspired by the name of a real-life Yoruba religious river diety in the character's homeland of Nigeria.

Marvel's decision to change a character's codename 14 years after they debut isn't unheard of, and in this case the direct explanation of why is refreshing compared to the still-puzzling decision to change Spider-Gwen's name to Ghost-Spider. .

Oya debuts as Temper in July 10's X-Men #1.


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