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The Best of Emma Frost Comics, our Recommended Reading Order for the White Queen

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She started as a foe of the X-Men before becoming a superhero and one of the most important members and leaders of the team. She is one of the strongest telepaths out there and has the power to transform her body into an unbreakable diamond. Today, we’re talking about Emma Frost, a.k.a. The White Queen.

Created by Chris Claremont and John Byrne in 1979, Emma Frost is one of the most striking X-Men who found her way to the hearts of readers thanks to great character developments throughout the years. She has evolved to become more heroic without betraying who she is at her core. Importantly, Emma is devoted to her students, and the children she helps, and tries to give them all they need to survive in this cruel world.

Labeled as a femme fatale, Emma Frost is undoubtedly a complex and strong character. She never shies away from her past, but also has to endure many traumatic experiences and losses since her first appearance, more than 40 years ago!

Emma Frost finds herself right now in the spotlight with this essential reading order, listing the best White Queen comics to read to understand her character, motivations, and transformations. Beware! A Best/Essential Comic for a character can be a mediocre or okay story with great characterization or important for the character’s evolution.

Your Must-Read Emma Frost Comics

Let’s begin by pointing out the 2003 miniseries written by Karl Bollers. This series explores Emma’s past before she became the White Queen of the Hellfire Club, starting with her years as a student when she discovers her mutant powers of telepathy. As it is a backstory, it can be read at any time, really. It’s also an optional reading as everything you need to know about Emma will be given to you in other runs.

What follows is a selection of the best and recommended stories with Emma Frost, not a complete reading order. For more X-Men stories, as always, check out our Complete X-Men reading order!

Introducing The White Queen: Emma Frost as a Villain

When Emma Frost made her debut in X-Men #129, released in October 1979, she tried to recruit the young Kitty Pryde for her exclusive Massachusetts Academy to no avail. This is also the official beginning of the Dark Phoenix Saga, where Emma Frost is a member of the infamous Hellfire Club where she occupies the position of The White Queen. During her time as a villain, Emma switched minds with Storm to infiltrate the X-Men, and succeeded to recruit Firestar before Xavier.

For more Emma Frost during this period, go check out The New Mutants where she has her own team from Massachussets Academy, the Hellions.

Emma Frost turn over a new leaf in the ’90s

After some time in a coma, Emma Frost regains consciousness to discover the Hellions have been killed during The Phalanx Covenant crossover. This news pushes her on the road to redemption and as a mentor, along with Banshee, to the Generation X team. It’s a time when Emma grows a lot as a person.

Emma Frost in the noughties (New X-Men, Astonishing, Uncanny)

Like Scott Summers, Grant Morrison’s run on the X-Men is one of the most important runs for Emma Frost. And it begins with a bang for our White Queen, with another tragedy being the catalyst for her secondary mutation: the ability to transform her body into an unbreakable diamond. She then returned to the Xavier Institute to teach and took the quintuplet psychic sisters, the Stepford Cuckoos, under her wing. This is during this era that she begins a psychic affair with Scott Summers before it evolves into an official relationship. She later co-lead the X-Men alongside Scott in Joss Whedon’s Astonishing X-Men.

Then, we enter a period full of events, traumatic experiences, difficult decisions, and more. It starts with House of M, and continues with The Messiah Trilogy and everything surrounding the Utopia era. During this time, Emma Frost is part of Uncanny X-Men. For more information and all the collection of this era, go see our X-Men Reading Order, Part. 4: The Messiah trilogy, Dark Reign, Schism, Avengers Vs X-Men.

From Schism to Avengers vs. X-Men 

The X-Men got through a rough patch in the 2010s, with the franchise being sort of run into the ground during this era. Though times were difficult, Emma Frost has still some cool moments here and there, including Kieron Gillen’s run on Uncanny X-Men, and lived through hard but important times story-wise, with Schism and Avengers Vs. X-Men.

Also, check out X-Men Black – Emma Frost where she sets her sights on the club, determined to tear down the organization that wronged her.

Emma Frost in the Krakoa Era

Jonathan Hickman became the main architect of the X-Men Universe and created a new safe haven for all mutants in Krakoa. As a prominent figure in the mutant society, Emma wants more than anything else that this sanctuary works for all mutants, “For the Children”. She has rebranded the Hellfire Trading Company as a high-level transaction business to serve Krakoa’s commercial interests, created the Marauders, and became the host of the annual Hellfire Gala. Let’s simply say that Emma Frost has has some great moments in this X-Men era.

Did we forget an important issue for Emma? Did we make a mistake? Let us know in the comments!

Last Updated on May 27, 2024.

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