Iceman is a mutant with the ability to emanate intense cold which manifests as ice formations, and the pseudo-psionic ability to shape those ice formations into whatever structure he can imagine. He is often seen to project cold from his hands in the form of "ice blasts" which can cause an enemy to be completely engulfed in ice in a matter of seconds. Perhaps his most ingenious use of his abilities is the creation of a sort of ice slide along which he can slide very quickly.
As a teenager, Drake was recruited to Professor Charles Xavier's "school for gifted youngsters", where he joined other young mutants as a charter member of the X-Men. Drake was sometimes self-conscious that he was the youngest member of the original team.
Iceman's appearance has changed significantly over the years. In the early X-Men stories, his appearance was more reminiscent of a snowman. The explanation that was given in those days was that when he used is abilities, he became so cold that frost formed on his skin. In X-Men #7 (1964), at the prompting of team leader Cyclops he learned to cover his body with hardened-but-flexible ice, and adopted the hard crystalline appearance with which we are familiar today. Even more recently Iceman developed the ability to not only cover his body with ice, but to actually become organic ice. Though the appearance is similar, Iceman is now actually translucent in his ice form.
Iceman suffers from a chronic poor self-image, and is a classic under-achiever. Bobby's use of his powers has often been lazy and undisciplined. Iceman has never realized the true potential of his abilities, and even went through a period of deep depression after the White Queen took over his body and used his abilities to do things Iceman couldn't even comprehend. The White Queen herself believed that Iceman had the potential to be one of the most powerful mutants on earth.
There has been quite a bit of speculation regarding the true nature of Iceman's powers. According to the laws of physics, cold is defined as the absence of heat, and therefore there is actually no such thing as "cold." If this is the case, Iceman cannot emanate cold, but rather must absorb or dispel heat. Since heat is energy, Iceman's power then becomes a pseudo-psionic ability to manipulate energy. It has been suggested that Iceman's lack of personal initiative has prevented him from discovering the deeper facets of his abilities, and has led him instead to focus only on what might be the easiest manifestation of his abilities, the creation of ice.
Iceman began as one of the original members of the X-Men, and much later re-joined his original teammates in X-Factor. During his stint with X-Factor he began dating an asian woman named Opal.
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