Domino’s Philosophy of Luck: A Bataillean Reading


  • Troy Michael Bordun University of Northern British Columbia; Trent University


"Marvel Comics’ Neena Thurman, a.k.a. Domino, is unique among the mutants in the X-Universe for her supernatural ability to bring about personal good fortune. This good luck, however, cannot be willed into existence. Instead, she must throw herself into dangerous, life-threatening scenarios and trust that the odds will turn in her favour.... Domino reflects on fortuity and death and, through my intervention here, develops philosophical themes that echo the tenets of Existentialism, particularly in the works of French philosopher Georges Bataille.... The following article provides interpretive remarks about Domino and its latent philosophical stakes while also refining Bataille’s onto-ethical theory, i.e., there is no ethical theory without ontological inquiry. By unraveling Domino’s mutant abilities alongside her reflections about chance, life, and mortality, Domino poses questions that are central to onto-ethical inquiry, each of which I tackle in separate sections: does the universe give a damn about our existence and, if it does not, what are the forces that we must contend with to exercise our (perhaps limited) free will? What makes a unique being, what factors contribute to personal identity and, if a small piece is taken away, is that person still the identical person they were before? And how do others help us determine who we are and how we collectively inhabit the world?"