Victor Borkowski was born and raised in Fairbury, Illinois. He lived a normal life despite his reptilian features, a result of his being a mutant. The close-knit community accepted the boy for who he was until anti-mutant sentiment began to spread. For his own safety, his parents sent him to the Xavier Institute, where he quickly excelled academically.
Academy X & Alpha Squadron
When the adviser system was set up at the Xavier Institute, Victor originally chose Wolverine, but quickly realized that was not a good fit and then switched to Karma. However, during the formation of training squads throughout the school, he was reassigned to Northstar's Alpha Squadron. At first, he was quite friendly with Hellion and the other Hellions, but eventually became closer to his teammates. He was especially close to Northstar and was deeply affected by his death, as the hero helped him come to terms with his homosexuality.
When a resurrected Northstar attacked the Institute to kill the X-Men at the behest of the Children of the Vault, Anole found him and was able to temporarily snap him out of the mind control set in place by Serafina. His joy at seeing his former mentor back was short-lived, as Jean-Paul returned to his mind-controlled state and viciously beat him.
Anole was one of only 27 students at the Institute who didn't lose his mutant powers in the event known as "M-Day." The squad system was dissolved, and the remaining students were merged into one group. Shortly afterwards, Emma Frost set up an all-out brawl amongst the remaining students to determine who would become the team of X-Men trainees; Victor was not selected, yet still resided and trained at the Institute.
Anole was asked by Mercury to cover the raid of the New X-Men against Nimrod at Forge's Dallas home, and was interrogated by Val Cooper and O*N*E Colonel Reyes. He was consequently orange-flagged by the O*N*E afterwards.
Quest for Magik
When Victor and the other students got together to tell stories, Blindfold told them a scary one involving the demon lord Belasco and his apprentice Illyana Rasputin. They soon realized, however, that her tale wasn't make-believe, as they were sucked down into Limbo to be questioned about Illyana's whereabouts by Belasco. The group was then attacked by a large group of demons and Rockslide ended up being mysteriously shattered. Victor attempted to take charge, rallying the students around the defenseless Blindfold, only to have his right arm severed at the shoulder by a demon.
Victor wondered why he wasn't dead from losing too much blood and why it didn't hurt. He eventually grew a huge new reptilian arm that replaced the one he had lost. It seemed his mutation also endowed him with the ability to recover limbs, though they emerged as more mutated/reptilian versions of the originals. The arm itself was spiky, resembling his scalp, with razor sharp claws and appeared to be immensely powerful. After defeating Belasco, Anole and Pixie were made members of the New X-Men squad on recommendation of Rockslide, who threatened to quit if they weren't appointed.
Later, Rockslide and X-23 tried to convince Victor to cut off his other arm but he refused, prompting Rockslide to call him a sissy. Anole got offended and pushed him out the window while he proclaimed, "I swear I didn't know! Don't be so sensitive!" After Rockslide refused to blow himself up, Anole called him a sissy to get him to do it. He then offered to try and blow up Santo himself. Santo later outed Victor as gay to some of the other students, though Loa (a fellow member of Alpha Squadron) was already aware and said that everyone knew.
When Professor Xavier detected the first mutant birth since M-Day, the X-Men went to the baby's birthplace to protect the child. They found the town destroyed by the Purifiers, who abhorred the child as the anti-Christ prophesied by Nimrod and the late Reverend William Stryker and sought to kill the baby. Upon discovery that the child was not dead but missing, the X-Men divided into teams to search for it. Some of the New X-Men and Armor decided to launch a preemptive strike against the Purifiers to see if they had the baby, as well as to seek revenge for their murdered classmates. Anole sneaked into the base using his camouflage powers and while he checked the Purifiers' computers, Rictor, who was undercover, confronted him. They were ambushed by the Reavers, who mortally wounded Hellion in the fight. Pixie managed to teleport the team out and they were spread between Washington and the Institute.
After Cyclops disbanded the X-Men as well as the school, Victor received a warm welcome from the citizens of his hometown, but soon went into hiding for accidentally attacking his own father due to his PTSD from attacks he suffered while at the Institute. Northstar, contacted by Cyclops, found Anole on a tree limb beside a tree house. At first, Jean-Paul made jokes, thinking Victor was having a problem with fitting in, as both a mutant and gay teen. Victor then explained he didn't have a problem with the townspeople, as they accepted him for who he was; he had a problem with Northstar and the other X-Men for stealing the New X-Men's innocence. He placed a lizard-like stuffed animal at the base of the tree with a message to his parents, as they would look for him there first once they began searching for him, and elbowed Jean-Paul in the face, similar to how Northstar attacked him in the past. Before departing, Victor told Northstar to tell all of the former X-Men to not look for him anymore.
Despite telling off Northstar, Victor decided to accept Dani Moonstar's offer to join the Young X-Men and move to San Francisco against his better judgement after discussing the difficulty of trying to live a "normal" life with Dani.
Soon after arriving in San Francisco, Anole assisted Jonas Graymalkin, another member of the new Young X-Men team, with coming to terms with his homosexuality, which led him to be buried by his bigoted father nearly 200 years earlier. Anole and Graymalkin formed a close friendship, and Anole took on some responsibility for taking care of Graymalkin.
Anole was also an instrumental member of the X-Men in combating the Skrull invasion of Earth by using his ability to camouflage. During the initial invasion, he and the Stepford Cuckoos helped evacuate the San Francisco General Hospital and later helped take intel photos of the Skrull ships.
Anole accompanied Beast and other mutants during the Proposition X rallies, which led to the San Francisco mutant riots. He and Graymalkin were the ones to raise the X-Flag on Utopia. During the X-Men's battle against the Dark Avengers and the Dark X-Men, Anole was shot in the abdomen with one of Hawkeye's arrows.
Some time later on Utopia, Anole, Loa, and Rockslide went looking for help, claiming that a ghost had kidnapped Mercury. Cyclops claimed that the X-Men were too busy to deal with it because of trade negotiations. Magneto stepped up and told them he would investigate, since negotiations were never his strong suit. He took the three kids into the sub-levels. The kids were unsure if they should trust him, which seemed founded when he allowed Sentinels to attack them. He eventually took the Sentinels out. When they found Mercury, they also found a recording that Magneto had set up in the case of his death. Magneto sent all the kids away. The recording said that mutants could never live in coexistence with man, and needed a place for themselves. Magneto smiled and turned off the machine. When the kids asked what it was, Magneto said it was just an old ghost, and that he gave it what it wanted.
Anole continued his Danger Room training while on Utopia, and, along with Graymalkin and Rockslide, helped orient Dagger to X-Men training. Later, Anole and the other Young X-Men helped save both Dagger and her partner Cloak from a group of anti-mutant terrorists.
Anole, Rockslide, Dust, Trance, and Loa visited the mainland to see Jubilee. Jubilee was uncertain about going to the island, since she was no longer a mutant. The kids were extremely happy to see her. Rockslide said that Anole had a crush on her. Then Surge appeared and started arguing with Jubilee and told her she should not be there. Jubilee realized that she was still a mutant on the inside, even if she did not have powers, and showed this to Surge. Surge and the other kids left, and Surge offered her to join them, but Jubilee declined. Jubilee then finished a letter to give to Wolverine and left the docks.
Anole and the younger X-Men were shown with Cannonball on Utopia teaching them how to plant their own food, to which Anole said that they were wasting their time and that they could just buy their food from the store. Anole looked at Magik expecting her to agree with him, however she didn't respond and instead teleported him to Limbo for five days without food or water. Eventually she returned with water for him. Anole told her that he had learned his lesson and that without planting their own food, the mutant race could starve to death, but Magik responded that she did not intend to teach him a lesson, she had sent him to limbo because she was sick of looking at him. Magik teleported them both back to Utopia where Anole resumed his work in farming.
Pixie: Strikes Back!
When Pixie, Armor, X-23, Mercury, and Blindfold went missing, Anole and Rockslide went in search of them. They found Blindfold alone in the girls washroom. Rockslide accidentally broke the door down. Anole and Santo talked to Ruth, but found out nothing. They took Ruth to see Emma. Together with Emma, Rockslide, Nightcrawler, and Psylocke, Anole was able to help save the hostage mutants from Saturnine.
During Bastion's Nimrod attacks on San Francisco, Anole joined a team of X-Men to rescue Magik from Limbo after she was sent there by Bastion's forces. Cannonball chose Anole for the mission to provide moral support for Pixie, whose teleportation ability they required to travel to Limbo. Anole and Pixie were extremely reluctant to risk themselves for Magik, who they believed did not deserve to be saved, but decided to go because they are heroes. In Limbo, Anole fended off demons and bickered with Cannonball; he also took out his teammate Dazzler when she was corrupted by Limbo's influence. In the end, Pixie and Anole somewhat resolved their issues with Magik and the team returned home.
Following Bastion's defeat, Anole accompanied Indra, Rogue, Magneto, and Loa to Mumbai, India, when the Gavaskar family called Indra back home. While there Anole helped defeat the Children of the Vault and saved Mumbai from destruction.
With the dawning of a brighter age, Anole was convinced by Rockslide to patrol the streets of San Francisco at night as masked crime fighters. Anole and Rockslide were successful in keeping their identities secret (commonly being confused for a Moon Knight Skrull and the Thing in a Jason Voorhees-esque hockey mask) until their crime fighting activity caught the attention of Mister Negative, who promptly sent the Serpent Society out to assassinate them.
From Quarantine to Graduation
Anole was the first mutant to contract the mutant flu created by Lobe and Sublime Corporation. Because of his physical mutation he began showing signs early on and was one of the hardest hit. When Cyclops decided to send the X-Men to attack Sublime Corp., Anole was one of the most determined to be a part of the team.
Anole was among the New X-Men members that protected Cyclops during the attack on Utopia by the Evolutionaries. He was also among the other students who saved Irma from the attack of Toad, Dragoness, Bliss, and Litterbug.
During the Schism, Anole was one of the X-Men who helped to defeat the Sentinel attacking Utopia. Afterward he was in the group that followed Wolverine back to the ruins in Westchester County, to rebuild the Xavier Institute.
In the wake of a massive wave of anti-mutant sentiment combined with the discovery that the Terrigen Mists spread in the atmosphere were harmful to mutants, Anole took refuge in a sanctuary called X-Haven, located in a protected area of Limbo. While there, he took care of other refugees by doing support work, fought against invading demons, and even helped Iceman come to terms with his homosexuality. Colossus chose him and a few other young mutants to train and take on field missions.
When Cerebra detected the sudden appearance of six hundred new mutant signatures in a warehouse in Tokyo, Storm sent Colossus and his team (formed by Anole, Ernst, Glob, and No-Girl) to investigate. Sugar Man was about to leave with an ark containing six hundred mutant embryos, which he genetically engineered in total isolation from the Terrigen Mists, when they arrived. He planned to take it with him to the future, where they would be safe from the M-Pox and grow to become the next generation of mutants, with him as their leader. The interference of Colossus and the young X-Men, however, resulted in them being teleported with the ark in his place. Arriving on Omega World, they were attacked by the Horsemen of Apocalypse and Colossus sacrificed himself so his protégés could escape with the ark. Anole and his teammates spent an entire year fighting their way through Omega World to try and find a way to return home, but didn't succeed.
Colossus' team eventually reunited with the X-Men, who had followed them through the timestream, but lost the ark to the Horsemen and their newest member, Colossus. The X-Men later invaded Apocalypse's Kingdom to recover the ark and rescue Colossus, returning to the present with Apocalypse because he was the only one who could undo Colossus' conversion into a Horseman. However, Apocalypse teleported Colossus away as soon as they arrived. In the end, Iceman and Nightcrawler tracked their comrade down and, with the help of Anole and his teammates, took him back to X-Haven, where Nightcrawler tricked Apocalypse into freeing Colossus before causing his death.
After the war between Inhumans and X-Men, during which the Terrigen Mists and Cerebra were destroyed, Anole went on a last mission with his friends before leaving X-Haven: the rescue of Cerebra's consciousness, which had been transferred from her body mere moments before its destruction.
When Kitty Pryde relocated the school to Central Park and renamed it the Xavier Institute for Mutant Education and Outreach, Anole decided to attend as a student. He would later defend the Institute and mutantkind from many threats, including Daken, Mojo's invasion, the Purifiers, and M-Plate.
Anole was later part of Kitty's training squad, along with Oya, Rockslide, Pixie, and Armor, tasked with stopping the Mutant Liberation Front from destroying a lab that contained the mutant vaccine. But before the mission could start, X-Man kidnapped Kitty by phasing her through the Blackbird, short-circuiting the entire jet and crashing it into the lab they were meant to save. From then on, the injured team is ambushed by the MLF while a Legion-possessed Multiple Man ran up to a nearly comatose Anole to question him on where Kitty had gone.
Anole was later brought to Beast's lab after the MLF were stopped by reinforcements. Unknowingly mind-controlled by Emma Frost, he stole a sample of mutant vaccine that was held in the lab to give to O*N*E. Upon being confronted on it, Anole confessed to Beast that he wanted mutants to have a chance to cure themselves so they never have to face hate for having physical mutations. Pixie then teleported over to the lab to recruit Anole and Beast against X-Man in the final battle on Quadra Island. When X-Man realized that his vision for the world would never come about with the X-Men around, he made them vanish in an instant, including Anole.
Anole and the mutants that vanished were sent to a different plane of reality created by Nate Grey and a Life Seed, a world where everyone on Earth was a mutant and relationships were strongly discouraged or illegal. Anole was a student at the Summers Institute for Higher Learning, in Westchester County, being part of its Medical Division.
Anole was also a follower of Murshid En Sabah Nur alongside Bling!. Together they burned down a building in order to disrupt what they called a "fascist regime." Anole was able to escape, but Bling! was caught by Blob and re-programmed. In order to remember the resistance pact he made with Maggott, Anole took a vial of Unveil. He later tasked Rockslide with looking up records of a 'Life Seed' while he went to go meet the rest of the resistance. The resistance (also comprised of Sister Tromette, Brother Hammil, and Scripture) revealed to Anole that to fully stop X-Man's brainwashing, he would have to bomb the Hope Summers Memorial Library.
Glob and Armor told Anole that they knew what he was up to and warned he would disappear if he continued to rebel against X-Man. Later that same day, Hisako confronted him in his dorm over his dangerous allegiances. Before he could explain himself, Pixie showed up to see an empty vial of Unveil and promptly place him under arrest before she was knocked unconscious by Armor, allowing Victor to escape. Anole met back up with Maggott and the rebels. Japheth reminded Victor that the X-Tracts' message of love and acceptance had gotten them nowhere and only radical action would change things. Anole later followed through with blowing up the Library.
Glob, Armor, and Rockslide rescued Anole from the remains of the Library before getting chased by Department X. After successfully evading them, Glob, who had all his pre-Age of X-Man memories, brought the team to this reality's version of Quadra Island to find the Life Seed to no avail. Pixie then showed up with the Marvelous X-Men to place everyone under arrest. Jailed in the Danger Room Prison Complex with his memories wiped, Anole accepted Beast's offer to join his gang of mutants with physical mutations. Psylocke, fed up with X-Man's makeshift reality, unleashed everyone's memories that she had taken away, creating a riot between the prisoners and the guards.
After Nate Grey restored all of the mutants back to what they originally were, Anole stood in front of a portal in the Danger Room Prison Complex with Armor and Glob Herman, ready to return to his regular universe.
House of X
Anole later became a resident of the new mutant nation of Krakoa. He and the rest of the citizens of Krakoa celebrated when Krakoa was recognized as an official nation. He is an occasional bartender at the Green Lagoon.
Anole alongside other non-human looking mutants began seeking guidance from Amahl Farouk. Sneaking into the Boneyard the group began experimenting with the corpses in the graveyard but were stopped by Scout, who was worried about them.
On the night of the Hellfire Gala, they found Scout dead while exploring Planet Arakko. Deciding they couldn't trust the adults after their recent secretive and unhelpful behavior and not wanting to get Farouk caught up in something he'd probably get blamed for, they decided to get Gabby resurrected themselves by going to Arbor Magna and using Cerebro to put a copy of her mind back into her body (which was being controlled by No-Girl.) When they got there No-Girl tried to mind control Tempus but they were confronted by Wolfsbane in wolf form.
Anole is a mutant with reptilian-like physiology including:
- Scaly Skin
- Enhanced Agility: Anole's natural agility, balance, and coordination are enhanced to increased levels, allowing him to perform feats that those of normal agility would find incredibly hard to do.
- Enhanced Speed: Capable of moving and running slightly faster than a normal human, but he is not on par with powered speedsters.
- Enhanced Reflexes: He has the reaction time that is roughly half of that of normal baseline human's.
- Enhanced Strength: Anole possesses superhuman strength enabling him to lift weights to, as of yet, unmeasured levels. There are some examples of his strength: 1) during his first journey in Limbo his strength was enough to scramble a magical force field that was imprisoning him and his friends; 2) during a fight against a Sentinel, Anole's strength was enough to break the metal armor plate of his adversary. However this power is present only in his right arm, and only appeared after regrowing his limb. The rest of his body remains in general human strength. Beast affirmed that any new limb that will regrow on Anole, it will be gifted with super strength exactly as in his right arm. He shows his strength once again after gaining a larger reptilian form after a draconic entity nearly roasted him alive, proving himself strong enough to kill giant monstrous creatures bare handed.
- Enhanced Stamina: Anole's muscles produce far less fatigue toxins during physical activity than the muscles of an average human. He can exert himself at peak capacity for several hours before fatigue impairs him.
- Long, Elastic, Sticky, Prehensile, Forked Tongue: Anole has an incredibly long tongue (apparently longer than his own body length) which he is capable of rapidly and abruptly extending out of the mouth. The tongue has a sticky tip on the end, which serves to catch anything that he would otherwise never be able to reach.
- Wall Crawling: Similar to Spider-Man, Anole can climb vertically up walls and hang from ceilings from pads on his hands and feet.
- Camouflage: Anole possesses superhuman ability to alter his skin color and appearance enabling him to copy the pattern of any surface he stands against.
- Razor Sharp Spikes & Claws: As part of his physical mutation, Anole has spikes that appear on his scalp. His newly regenerated frame now boasts razor sharp claws allowing for greater battle prowess.
- Reptilian Regenerative properties: Anole has a regenerative ability that can grow replacement limbs, though the full extent of this power remains unclear. After having his right arm amputated, Anole grew a larger scalier arm in its place. Later dipped in stomach acid Anole's physiology became larger and bulkier, making him that much physically stronger, faster, and tougher.
He was stated to be a Low Threat by the O*N*E.
Skilled team leader, and talented actor. Anole is a formidable hand to hand combatant, trained by the likes of Wolverine and others who taught him at the Xavier Institute.
- Anole has had a very "on again, off again" role in the X-titles. During his first appearances in New Mutants Vol 2, he was mostly a second-string character. When the title changed to New X-Men Vol 2, Vic was pushed a bit further into the background. Following M-Day, Anole and Pixie joined the main cast. In the wake of the Messiah Complex and Manifest Destiny, the Young X-Men were organized with Anole as a main character once again. Up until his reinclusion as a member of a primary roster in Extraordinary X-Men, he had shown up as a prominent character in many limited series including X-Men: Divided We Stand, Nation X, Cloak and Dagger Vol 4, X-Men: Pixie Strikes Back, X-Men: Hellbound, the Collision story arc of X-Men: Legacy, and X-Men: To Serve and Protect.
- Victor was 15 years old during his time on Utopia. Jean Paul referred to him as 16 prior to that, but it may have just been a mistake on Northstar's part.
- In the New X-Men: Academy X Yearbook #1, it's listed he likes theater, frisbee, and basketball, and dislikes traditions and bad action movies.
- He was voted "Best Actor" by the student body. In later comics, he's called "telegenic".
- Victor's chosen foreign language is French. This decision is possibly influenced by his French-Canadian mentor, Northstar.
- While he is friendly with most of his classmates, Rockslide, Loa and Graymalkin can be counted as his best friends. Anole is also close with Pixie due to their experiences in Limbo and with former Alpha Squadron teammate Indra.
- Victor thought about asking Striker out for a date at some point.
- It was originally implied through dialogue that Victor was gay. His sexual orientation was confirmed by the writers online, and was reaffirmed later on in X-Men: The 198 Files #1, New X-Men (Vol. 2) #43, X-Men Divided We Stand #1, Cloak and Dagger (Vol. 4) #1 and Extraordinary X-Men #6.
- Anole was supposed to die by suicide in a jettisoned New Mutants storyline.
- 268 appearance(s) of Victor Borkowski (Earth-616)
- 4 appearance(s) in handbook(s) of Victor Borkowski (Earth-616)
- 10 minor appearance(s) of Victor Borkowski (Earth-616)
- 3 mention(s) of Victor Borkowski (Earth-616)
- 3 mention(s) in handbook(s) of Victor Borkowski (Earth-616)
- 162 image(s) of Victor Borkowski (Earth-616)
- 4 quotation(s) by or about Victor Borkowski (Earth-616)