The 2021 Borg Hall of Fame

It’s been another long year of great entertainment.  It’s time for the ninth annual round of new honorees for the borg Hall of Fame.  We have several inductees from 2021 films and television – 16 in all, new borgs or updated variants of past members, bringing the borg Hall of Fame total to 281.

You can always check out the updated borg Hall of Fame on our home page under “Know your borg.”

Some reminders about criteria.  Borgs have technology integrated with biology Wearing a technology-powered suit alone doesn’t qualify.  Tony Stark aka Iron Man was named an honoree because the Arc Reactor kept him alive, not because of his incredible tech armor.  The Spider-Man suit worn by Tom Holland is similar to Tony’s, but it’s not integrated with Peter Parker’s biology.

Also, if the creators tell us the characters are merely robots, automatons, or androids (as in Westworld, and as in the Synths of Star Trek: Picard, and the new Dark Troopers of The Mandalorian), we take their word for it.  Again, integration is key, but in the Hall, once a member, always a member.  

So let’s get on with it.  Who’s in for 2021?

In 2022 we saw the return of past inductees in new shows, like Jet Black in the live-action Cowboy Bebop, Doc Ock in Spider-Man: No Way Home, Valance in the pages of Star Wars comics, the superhero kid called Cyborg in the updated Justice League, Fennic Shand in previews for The Book of Boba Fett, Vision starring in WandaVision, Iron Man, Ultron, and a host of MCU cyborg superheroes in What If…? and The Winter Soldier in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, plus more Daleks in Doctor Who and Replicants in Blade Runner: Black Lotus.  And best of all was the return of Luke Skywalker in the finale of The Mandalorian.

From Blade Runner: Black Lotus, we met a new evolution of Replicant in Elle, a young woman trying to discover her hidden past, who remembers her programming and has heightened physical, kinetic combat abilities.

Commander Alecia Beck entered the Star Wars universe in the pages of the comic Smuggler’s Run.  The high-ranking Imperial officer has a bionic left eye.

Primo (called Cyclops by James Bond) was one of the lackeys of Blofeld in No Time to Die.  Through some kind of unexplained tech, Primo’s prosthetic eye literally served as the eyes of Blofeld feigning mental illness in a jail cell.

In 2021 the world got to see its first live-action adaptation of the anime Cowboy Bebop.  Jet Black is already in our Hall of Fame, but here we got to see his new look, courtesy of Mustafa Shakir.  For Jet, the cybernetic arm heightened the power he could use against targets of his bounty hunting.

Also from Cowboy Bebop and new to the Hall is Ein the corgi dog.  As Faye Valentine says, “He plays movies from his eyes… from his EYES!”

We met a new king of Dalek, the Mutant Clone Daleks, in the 2021 standalone episode of Doctor Who, Revolution of the Daleks.

This is the new look for Doc Ock from Spider-Man: No Way Home.

A familiar face became a borg in the pages of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles future story The Last Ronin.  April O’Neil and her daughter Casey Jones, Jr. have new abilities thanks to exposure to the TMNT for years, but April also lost her arm and leg in battle, now replaced with enhancements.

Also in The Last Ronin, the TMNT baddie Baxter Stockman returned with a futuristic, cyberpunk, robotic Foot Army, himself updated with cyborg components.

From the Planetside novels, Colonel Carl Butler always means business, and this cybernetically enhanced soldier remains tough as nails, trying to stay alive while constantly dodging bullets.

Taskmaster took on a new twist in Black Widow, as Antonia Dreykov took over the mantle.  Manipulated by her mad scientist father, after nearly being killed by Black Widow, his experimental enhancements include a device at the back of her head that restored her mobility and gives her the power to mimic others’ fighting styles.  A chemical allows her to be remote controlled by others.

Bucky Barnes, The Winter Soldier, got to use his vibranium arm many times in 2021 in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.

The original cybernetic-powered Iron Man became Zombie Iron Man in the What If…? series.

Everyone loves a classic.  That’s true for Vision in his vintage comic book-style supersuit, appearing in his own series, WandaVision.

And here is Luke Skywalker, cyborg hand covered, but back again, this time coming to take the hand-off of Grogu from Din Djarin after the events of Return of the Jedi in the finale of The Mandalorian.

We’ve seen Spider-Man as a borg before (see Edge of Spider-Verse), but not like Gabrielle Dell’Otto drew him in 2021 for the cover of Amazing Spider-Man Issue #75.

Give them all a (cybernetic) hand, the 2021 inductees of the borg Hall of Fame!  Find the entire list updated here.  And don’t miss our Best of 2021 lists here.

Thanks for reading borg this year!

C.J. Bunce / Editor / borg

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