Emma began her role in the Marvel Universe as an X-Men supervillainess under the title of the White Queen of the Hellfire Club. She first appeared in the storyline The Dark Phoenix Saga, and later becomes the primary villain in the original run of New Mutants with her own team from Massachussets Academy, the Hellions.
After she's recovered from a coma and learns that her Hellions has been slaughtered by the Sentinels led by the supervillain Trevor Fitzroy during The Phalanx Covenant crossover, her guilt over her students' deaths led to her eventual reform. Her first role as The Atoner is in Generation X (1994) where she, along with Sean Cassidy a.k.a. Banshee, becomes the mentor for the team.
In the miniseries X-Men: Phoenix - Warsong, it's revealed that during her coma, her egg cells were used as genetic templates to clone several identical telepath mutant girls, five of which would later known as the Stepford Cuckoos. The clones refer to Emma as their "mother", a title she later accepts. She also personally acts as their tutor.
She's also one of the main characters in New X-Men where her infamous Mental Affair with Cyclops happened, endangering Cyclops' marriage to Jean Grey. In New X-Men: Academy X (2004), she becomes the leader of a new Hellions Squad, this time associated with the Xavier Institute. Her team is also the rival of a second New Mutants team, echoing the rivalry between the two original groups of the similar names. During M-Day, most of her team members retain their powers, with the exception of Tag (Brian Cruz) and Specter (Dallas Gibson). Around this time, one of the Cuckoos, Sophie, made a Heroic Sacrifice to stop Quentin Quire and his Omega Gang. This prompted another Cuckoo, Esme, to leave, but she later returned to personally try to kill Emma. Emma was shattered while in her organic diamond form by Esme who shot her with a diamond bullet, but Jean Grey managed to repair Emma at the molecular level. Esme herself is later killed by Xorn, who also killed Jean.
Later in Astonishing X-Men Vol. 3 (2004-2013), she co-leads the X-Men alongside Cyclops after Jean Grey's death. In this series, she also has an antagonistic relationship with Kitty Pryde, who is reluctant to accept Emma as a leader and teacher.
During a conversation with Iron Man in Civil War, Emma announces that the Xavier Institute and the X-Men will not support the Superhuman Registration Act and remain neutral, as she fears that the registration of mutants would put them in more danger.
After Secret Invasion and during Dark Reign, she's introduced as a member of Norman Osborn's Cabal and X-Men (Dark X-Men), only to later betray the team during a confrontation with X-Force. She took Namor, Cloak, and Dagger along with her and rejoined the rest of the mutants. An enraged Osborn sent the Dark Avengers and Dark X-Men to kill her and Namor, but failed spectacularly.
In Avengers vs. X-Men, she's one of five mutants who are possessed by the Phoenix Force and becomes one of the Phoenix Five. Under its influence, she does several terrible things which she later regrets. She lost her portion of the Phoenix Force power after Cyclops, who became more corrupted by the Phoenix Force, forcibly took it from her. She's later in custody of New Avengers members Luke Cage, Mockingbird, Daredevil, and the Thing. There, she survives an assassination attempt by the Purifiers.
She's later freed from her custody by Cyclops, Magneto, and Magik. Although she was still furious with Cyclops for what happened in the climax of Avengers vs X-Men, she agreed to join with Cyclops and Magneto once more and, along with Magik, began searching for new Mutants. She became a leader in Cyclops new X-Men team and was present when Cyclops freed several mutants from their human captors. The New Charles Xavier School for Mutants is founded.
Later, when the time-displaced original five X-Men came to join the school, she became the tutor for teen Jean Grey in the use of her power. Again, they began with a rather strained relationship, but to everyones surprise, they eventually settled their differences and actually began to bond, after a fashion.
Notable Comic Books appearance
- Emma Frost (2003-2005) (18 issues)
- X-Men Origins: Emma Frost (2010)
- All-New X-Men
- Astonishing X-Men
- Generation X
- Marvel Adventures: Spider-Man
- New Mutants
- New X-Men
- Uncanny X-Men
- Wolverine and the X-Men
- X-Men: Black
- The Dark Phoenix Saga
- Secret Invasion
- Dark Reign
- The Children's Crusade
- Avengers vs. X-Men
- Battle of the Atom
- Death of X
- Inhumans vs. X-Men
- Pryde of the X-Men (1989): voiced by Susan Silo.
- X-Men (1992-1997): voiced by Tracey Moore.
- Wolverine and the X-Men (2009): voiced by Kari Wahlgren.
- X-Men anime (2011): voiced by Kaori Yamagata and Ali Hillis.
- Generation X (1996): portrayed by Finola Hughes.
- X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009): While Emma Frost herself doesnt appear, a different character loosely based on Emma, named Emma Silverfox, appears in this movie. The character is portrayed by Tahyna Tozzi.
- X-Men: First Class (2011): Emma Frost is one of the antagonists from the Hellfire Club. Portrayed by January Jones.
- X-Men (1992): appears as a boss.
- X-Men Legends (2004): appears as playable hero. Voiced by Bobby Holliday.
- X-Men Legends II: Rise of Apocalypse (2005): appears as NPC. Voiced by Bobby Holliday.
- Marvel Ultimate Alliance (2006): appears as NPC.
- X-Men: Destiny (2011): appears as NPC. Voiced by Kari Wahlgren.
- Super Hero Squad Online (2011-present): appears as playable hero. Voiced by Grey DeLisle.
- Marvel: Avengers Alliance (2012-2016): appeared as recruitable playable hero.
- LEGO Marvel Superheroes (2013): appears as playable hero. Voiced by Kari Wahlgren.
- Marvel Heroes (2013-2017): appears as playable hero. Voiced by Kari Wahlgren.
- Marvel Future Fight (2015-Present): appears as a playable hero.
Tropes associated with her:
- Absolute Cleavage: Several of her costumes have gone for this look. An example is her black costume in New Charles Xavier School.
- Abusive Parents: Her father was cold and emotionless and encouraged his children to play mindgames with each other. Her mother was a neglectful drug abuser.
- "Greetings, Winston Frost here. Whoever you are, one thing is clear you've gotten my attention, and thus I applaud you. To have managed a minor miracle where so many others have failed... bully for you. I have followed your instructions and have responded within the time allotted. I also refrained from contacting the police as per your order. But, really... two hundred and fifty thousand dollars? Do you really think my daughter is worth that much? The same daughter who turned her back on me? Told me my money wasn't good enough? Well... you want to know how much I think she's worth? NOTHING. Oh, and as for hanging her, I hope you brought a long enough noose. Because she's dead to me already."
- Action Girl: Emma Frost is easily one of the most powerful mutants on the team. She once kicked Thor's ass.
- Action Mom: For the Stepford Cuckoos, her five cloned daughters. She can be protective to them, and she is quite saddened when two of them are dead (even if one of them, Esme, once betrayed and tried to kill her).
- Adaptational Heroism: Many animated adaptations, especially the X-Men anime, take away Emma's more sociopathic personality traits. Her backstory also tends to get changed around, often giving her a Hidden Heart of Gold among other positive qualities.
- Adorkable: She sleeps like a toddler.
- Alternate Universe:
- Age of Apocalypse: In this universe, Emma never joined the Hellfire Club and is a member of the Human High Council, with partial lobotomy suppressing her abilities.
- Age of Ultron: She is one of the few superpowered humans hiding in the tunnels beneath Central Park.
- Days of Future Past: She is former White Queen of the Hellfire Club. She joined Magneto and Jubilee to save Wolverine and defeat the alternate evil Psylocke who is also Red Queen of Hellfire Club. She later attempts to rehabilitate Psylocke back to the side of good.
- In a reality visited by Exiles, Emma is wheelchair-bound and served as the heroes' chief means of communication by using her telepathy.
- House of M: Emma is married to Scott and is a child therapist. Franklin Richards is one of her clients.
- Marvel Adventures: Emma is a young mutant and one of few people who knows Spider-Man's true identity. She had crush on Peter. She also briefly became costumed rogue with the alias "Silencer" (complete with Domino Mask!) to see what Spidey capable of. Later, she joined the Blonde Phantom Detective Agency.
- Marvel Noir: She is a warden of Genosha Bay prison.
- In another reality visited by New Exiles, Dame Emma Frost is head of Britain's Department X and founder of Force-X. She's also wheelchair-bound.
- Old Man Logan: She marries Doctor Doom in order to ensure the survival of her species. Together with Doctor Doom, they rule a sector of what once was the United States of America, the only place on Earth where mutants can live without fear of persecution.
- Ultimate Marvel (Ultimate X-Men): She is former student and girlfriend of Charles Xavier. She's in charge of the Academy of Tomorrow and is secretly a part of the Hellfire Club.
- In another world visited by Exiles, she is still in her evil Hellfire Club role and almost freed the evil Proteus from Morph. It's a long story.
- An Arm and a Leg: In Uncanny X-Men Vol. 2, she loses an arm against Mr. Sinister. Being in diamond form, she doesn't die from blood loss or anything, and she gets better.
- Anti-Hero: Unscrupulous Hero or Nominal Hero. At best.
- Anti-Hero Substitute: While she never adopted the name or costume, she essentially became this to Jean after the latter's death in New X-Men, replacing her as the team's resident telepath, the Institute's headmistress and Cyclops' bedmate. This left her perpetually in Jean's shadow, both In-Universe and out, a status that she was acutly aware of and more than one character (including a teenage Jean) has needled her about it.
- The Atoner: In Generation X, and newly focused on by Joss Whedon.
- Attention Whore: She wears those Stripperiffic suits on purpose.
- Badass Teacher: She's already a teacher even before she joins the X-Men.
- Bare Your Midriff: Another frequently-used feature of her costumes...the ones that haven't done this to some degree are rare, but her bodysuit in Generation X is the most noteworthy.
- Battle Couple: With Cyclops, after the death of Phoenix. They tend to lead from the front line together, though not nearly as effective a team as Cyclops and Phoenix were.
- Bastard Girlfriend: The White Queen's entire deal.
- Berserk Button: Don't call her "old".
- Betty and Veronica: Veronica for Cyclops to Jean Grey (Betty).
- Big Bad: One of several in the original run of New Mutants.
- Brains and Bondage: She worked as a Dominatrix at the Hellfire Club and has degrees in several fields, including a Bachelor of Science in Education with a minor in Business Administration from the prominent Marvel Universe's Empire State University. She was also founder and CEO of Frost Enterprises, a major multinational conglomerate headquartered in New York City that rivaled Stark Enterprises and Worthington Industries and specialized in shipping, aerospace engineering and new technology R&D.
- Break the Cutie: Her retconned backstory qualifies.
- Breakout Character: Easily the most prominent and popular 21st century addition to the X-Men. From a supervillain and foe of the X-Men, to a superhero and one of the X-Men's most central members and leaders.
- Broken Ace / Broken Bird / Troubled, but Cute: Again, depending on the writer.
- Broken Pedestal: When Sophie Cuckoo died, the other Cuckoos blames Emma for the death. One of the remaining four even tries to kill Emma.
- Byronic Heroine: Rare female example, but Depending on the Writer, it can be well done or extremely disturbing.
- Cain and Abel: She and her sister, Adrienne.
- The Chick: In New X-Men. Also in Avengers vs. X-Men before she becomes one of the Phoenix Five.
- Cleavage Window: Her Phoenix Five costume in Avengers vs. X-Men has an enclosed opening on the top portion right above her cleavage.
- Cloning Blues: The Stepford Cuckoos.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: One of her favorite psionic experiences is inducing extreme levels of pain, often in people already held captive. She has continued to violate and traumatise people over the years, frequently in combination with Smug Super One Liners.
- Contemptible Cover: Her 2003-5 solo series became notorious for hypersexualised pin-up covers that did not reflect the content (the series depicted Emma as a teenager, wearing normal clothes) and actively alienated the young female audience that might have enjoyed it.
- Cool and Unusual Punishment: She will make you do some really weird things using telepathy: for example, 48 hours of uncontrollable vomiting upon hearing the word "parsley".
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: At one point, she was in the Hellfire Club.
- Dark and Troubled Past: Her father was cold, uncaring, sadistic and physically abusive, her mother was a neglectful drug user, her older sister was identical to their father, and her younger sister couldn't care less about her. The only family member who cared about her became a drug addict (thanks to his father's horrible treatment to him), and when she thought things would be better to her, her friend was killed in front of her, another friend was a bitch who manipulated her, and her Love Interest dumped her because she was a mutant. She also used to enjoy torture, mind-rape, followed by setting hunting dogs on the nightly victims (yes, really), corporate corruption, manipulation, deceit, and forcing opponents to kill themselves during her villain years. Shaw required her to help killing her two best friends to become White Queen.
- Dark Chick: Of Norman Osborn's Cabal in Dark Reign. Eventually turns into Sixth Ranger Traitor.
- Deadpan Snarker: It makes her appear even colder at some points.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: She is in no danger of defrosting completely anytime soon. Since she was already defrosting in the Generation X, but then Morrison reverted her into even more of an ice queen than when she was a villain, any defrosting now still seems like a regression. However, in some chapters, she seems to be melting.
- Depending on the Writer:
- Scott Lobdell's version had almost nothing in common with the Corrupt Corporate Executive supremacist Mind Rape Cold-Blooded Torture fetishist that she used to be. Instead, she became a excellent teacher doing genuinely good actions while feeling good about it. However, later in Generation X, she was strongly hinted to have murdered a police officer looking into her sister's death (at Emma's hands). Grant Morrison and some other writers returned her closer to her roots again, according to some it made her more interesting, but played her as a complete hedonistic Jerkass, which sat badly with those who were introduced to her through Generation X, because it put all the Character Development she had during seven years in a trash bin. Later other writers attempted to either return her to the less extreme portrayal or attempt to integrate the two.
- How villainous she is post-Inhumans vs. X-Men tends to vary wildly. One comic might portray her as a genocidal lunatic, and the next she'll be palling around with Ice-Man or flirting with Jessica Jones.
- Disproportionate Retribution: Towards plenty of regular people who have simply somewhat annoyed her.
- Domino Mask: Her alternate self◊ in Marvel Adventures wore this when she's in disguise as costumed rogue with the alias "Silencer".
- Double Standard: Rape, Female on Male: The infamous Cyclops/Emma Frost affair essentially started as this. Long story short: Cyke wasn't mentally in the best of health, Emma offered him therapy, then she uses this as an excuse to telepathically bang him. Seriously. Now flip their genders; what would happen to a male therapist if they convinced their female patient to have sex with them to deal with their issues? What makes this example even worse, Emma is treated like the victim and Romantic Sue in the resulting love triangle with all her seriously out-of-order behavior being ignored because 'she was in love with him', and Cyclops is still getting crap, in-universe and out, for cheating on his wife. It might not help that he got together with Emma immediately after his wife's death, but that was literally because Jean (who contacts him telepathically from a distant Bad Future) made him get together with her to avoid the X-Men falling apart.
- The Dragon: After she's possessed by the Phoenix Force in Avengers vs. X-Men, she becomes The Dragon to Cyclops' Big Bad.
- Dude Magnet: Besides Cyclops, she was once romantically involved with Sebastian Shaw, Namor, and Tony Stark.
- Dressed Like a Dominatrix: Her White Queen outfit, which combines thigh-high boots, opera gloves, and a corset as her supervillain costume.
- Dye Hard: In-Universe example. Her natural hair color is brown.
- Emotionless Girl: She frequently comes across as this due to her detached, cynical persona.
- Evil Feels Good: More intensely during the Hellfire Club days, but Depending on the Writer, still maintains similar patterns.
- Evil Costume Switch: As one of the Phoenix Five. Subverted when she becomes Black Queen during Dark Reign as she betrayed Norman Osborn there.
- Evil Mentor: Sebastian Shaw. Served as this herself to the Hellions.
- Exposed to the Elements: In the miniseries Phoenix: Endsong, Emma Frost doesn't seem the least bit bothered traipsing around the Arctic half-naked. She is Emma Frost, after all.
- FaceHeel Turn: Has danced on the edge of this a few times following her Hellfire Club days. Finally jumped over the edge following her Sanity Slippage after Present!Scott's death from Terrigen poisoning, manufactured the events of Inhumans Versus X Men and tried to wipe out the Inhumans. However, since then, she has been an ally to mutants and the X-Men on several occasions.
- Fire/Water Juxtaposition: Used to contrast her with Jean when she first enters Scott's life. Emma is constantly associated with ice and the cold because of her surname "Frost", her all-white attire and her cool temperament, and she resembles an ice sculpture when in her organic diamond form; Jean is constantly associated with fire and warmth because of her red hair, her codename "Phoenix" and her unpredictable temper, and her psionic powers frequently manifest as flames.
- "Freaky Friday" Flip: Pulled off one with Storm in her Hellfire Club days, in an attempt to destroy the X-Men from within.
- The Glorious War of Sisterly Rivalry: Her father had her compete with her sisters for the right to be his heir (her brother had the good sense to stay out of it. Consequently, he was the sibling she was closest to). Her rivalry with her eldest sister, Adrienne, became so bad that it eventually went fatal.
- Good Feels Good: On a number of occasions, she had expressed how much she was trying to be a good person and liked to do "the right things". She does have an uneasy conscience though, enjoys earning approval from Scott, and has been praised for a number of good deeds, although recurrently a bit extreme. However, she seems to enjoy earning approval from Scott, and some of her teammates or students.
- Guilt Complex: As explicitly stated on Astonishing X-Men #18.
- Grand Theft Me: Happened once involuntarily with Iceman. Back then Iceman really wasn't living up to the potential of his powers. The minute Emma entered his body, she used his abilities in ways he couldn't imagine, which eventually left Iceman more than a little envious.
- The Hedonist: Depending on the Writer.
- Heroine With An F In Good: Occasionally improves.
- HeelFace Turn: After a fashion. It's kind of funny, she just sort of "fell into" hanging with the X-Men. She was comatose for a long while and in their care, and revived right in the middle of the big Phalanx mega-crossover. She escaped with the rest of the X-Men and, having nowhere else to go, just wound up helping them. She officially joined the X-Men after the Genosha genocide caused by Cassandra Nova.
- Hot Teacher: She certainly has the attention of all the male students.
- Immune to Mind Control: Emma Frost's secondary mutation gives her an organic diamond form. While it prevents her from using her own telepathy, it renders her immune to anyone else's.
- Ink Suit Actress: John Byrne based her look on Diana Rigg as Emma Peel.
- Jerk Justifications: Emma was originally presented as a textbook sociopath, somebody extremely inclined towards being very bad, who has no illusions about the "severe warts on her soul", on-off trying to learn how to be good, and stumbling along the way a lot.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Despite her aloof behavior and extreme methods, she genuinely cares about the mutant race and her students.
- Karma Houdini: She used to torture captive people to death for sexual gratification and telepathically manipulated Scott, her patient, into a relationship with her when he was married to Jean. Yet isn't serving multiple life-sentences. She pays in occasional bad conscience for some of the many horrible things she does, and the tragedies of losing her students, but it's never enough to make her stop doing very morally objectionable things.
- Killed Off for Real: In the Ultimate Marvel universe, during Ultimatum
- Kindhearted Cat Lover: Maybe not exactly kindhearted, but she's a cat lover.
- Knight Templar: She's incredibly ruthless, brutal, and uncompromising, but she's fiercely protective of her students and allies and is greatly invested in helping mutantkind advance and have a better tomorrow. She's just FAR less touchy about using extreme force to achieve her goals and deal with anyone who tries to harm her or those she has sworn to protect.
- Lady of War: Has an elegant, haughty, and ruthless demeanor, and still looks gorgeous when fighting with her psychic powers or diamond form.
- Light Feminine and Dark Feminine: Invoked. She (almost) always wears a white costume whereas Selene, the Black queen, usually wears a black version of it.
- Literally Shattered Lives: Done by one of her five cloned daughters, Esme, who shot her with diamond bullet. Thanks to Jean, she gets better.
- Lovable Alpha Bitch: She's almost always conceited, extremely critical, and absolutely ruthless in any kind of fight. Not to mention she intentionally wears all those skimpy outfits just to get attention. However, she's a Mama Bear to anyone who's officially or unofficially her student, and she's almost always been a loyal, reliable member of the various teams she's belonged to.
- Mama Bear: Seriously, do NOT threaten her students. ... She once erased every happy memory in an assassin's mind to protect X-23 from the assassin. On the other hand, originally (as per the Firestar miniseries) she regularly tortured them when dissatisfied with their progress or wanted to get a point across. She then became a better teacher, however, but is still not above occasionally violating them if she deems it necessary, such as the Elixir case. In her defense, Elixir had just attacked Colossus, one of her best friends◊, and other X-Men had done worst threats to their own students.
Emma: No one said anything about a metal-masked Jean Grey from the future and no one said anything about you beating the hell out of yourself. You want to psychically battle someone, pick on someone who absolutely despises you.
- She can even becomes this for teen Jean Grey if she wants to. When teen Jean is among those who have been psychically attacked by Lady Xorn, a.k.a. older Jean Grey in Battle of the Atom:
- One of the actions that ultimately led to the dissolution of Generation X was Emma killing her sister Adrienne after her machinations caused Synch's death.
- Emma's relationship with X-23 is one of her most complicated relationships with fellow X-Women. But mess with the young girl and you'll wish you were dead, as Kimura finds out the hard way.
- Manipulative Bitch: Even after the HeelFace Turn
- Meaningful Name: In her villain days, she wasn't really evil in an "ice queen" manner, and in fact outwardly played the role of a benevolent friendly and somewhat nerdy headmaster, so "Frost" didn't really mean anything until Morrison decided it did. Post-Morrison, her surname also serves to highlight the Opposites Attract nature of her relationship with Scott ("Frost" and "Summers"—get it?).
- Mental Affair: That one happened in New X-Men between her and Scott, some time before Jean Grey's death. Really, though, it was more of a case of Double Standard: Rape, Female on Male, considering that Scott had been sent to her for therapy following months of Mind Rape at the hands of Apocalypse, whereupon she took advantage.
- Mind Rape: She thoroughly loves this trope.
- She has done this to a lot of people on many different occassions and for many different reasons, sometimes good, sometimes bad.
- Most Common Superpower: Frost is one of the very few superheroines known to have breast implants.
- Ms. Fanservice: She almost always makes it to the top of any list discussing the sexiest women in comics. Since her inception back in the 80s, shes pretty much worn variations on white lingerie, sometimes far more revealing than most of the other Marvel women. She gets quite a few scenes where she's wearing even less than usual and seems to be fully shameless about this.
- Downplayed in Marvel Adventures: Spider-Man. Due to being aged down into a teenager, her outfits are less Stripperiffic, trading her trademark white lingerie◊ for a skintight catsuit that highlights◊ her Adaptational Curves rather than revealing skin. She's still a Ms. Fanservice, just an age-appropriate one.
- My Greatest Failure: She did not take the deaths of the original Hellions well. In fact, this is partly what precipitated her HeelFace Turn.
- New Powers as the Plot Demands: Morrison's run in New X-Men introduced the concept of "secondary mutations", with a few of the X-Men gaining new powers. Conveniently, Emma discovers her ability to transform into diamond right after a building falls on her.
- Nigh Invulnerable: She eventually gained a "secondary mutation" that lets her shapeshift into a form that is living diamond. This makes her extremely difficult to hurt, but disables her Psychic Powers until she reverts to her fleshy form.
- Non-Indicative Name: She doesn't have any actual ice/cold based powers, unless you count turning into diamond which kind of looks like ice.
- Not a Morning Person: She has specifically instructed her students (who, keep in mind, are knowingly being taught by a group of fugitives) to never wake her. Not to mention her sleeping position◊.
- Odd Friendship: with Wolverine. Also a Fan-Preferred Couple. In an ironic twist, out of all the New Mutants, she has the most relaxed friendship with Sam Guthrie.
- Of Corsets Sexy: Hellfire Club days.
- Parental Substitute: In X-Men anime, she plays the role of maternal figure for Hisako Ichiki/Armor, mostly because the girl's parents ask Emma to help control Armor's powers.
- Pay Evil unto Evil: Takes this attitude towards many things.
- Pet the Dog: She has turned very loyal to her students, genuinely loved Cyclops; and although she started out heavily into torture, bondage, brainwashing, and slavery, she was later shown as extremely opposed to the real-world variants.
- Pride: Even post HeelFace Turn she's rather arrogant.
- Progressively Prettier: In-universe example: she was Hollywood Homely in her teenage years (her origin mini-series had her shown and treated as 'girl next door' pretty) but has made several plastic surgeries to look beautiful. She's also one of the few comic book characters to admit that she's had breast implants.
- Psychic-Assisted Suicide: Provides the page image.
- Psychic Powers: Emma Frost possesses telepathic abilities of a similar, or slightly lower, caliber to those of Charles Xavier, over which she had an extremely refined level of skill. Frost has been cited as a "World-class telepath", "Omega Class Telepath" and a "Psi of the Highest Order" capable of extraordinary telepathic feats. When Wolverine thought to be protected from her thanks to Level 9 Psi-Shields created by Charles Xavier, she stated she was herself Level 10.
More specifically, since her introduction, Emma has displayed the telepathic standards of broadcasting and receiving thoughts, mind-control, altering perceptions and memories, projection of offensive blasts of psionic energy causing mental pain or unconsciousness, Astral Projection, mind switching, brain engram modification, mental sedation of unconscious victims, induction of mental pain by touch and limited psychometry...in short, every form of Mind Rape. However she can't use when in her Nigh Invulnerable mode.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Handed a brutal one out to Kimura.
- And received a brutal one in turn from Teen Jean, who accurately noted that Emma resented her because she knew that while Scott was the love of Emma's life, Jean was the love of Scott's and always would be.
- Reformed, but Rejected: In Astonishing X-Men, Kitty Pryde's reaction to Emma as a teacher at the X-Academy is less than enthusiastic. It subsequently turned out that Emma deliberately arranged for Kitty to join the staff, because she needed to have someone around who would notice if she started turning evil again and wouldn't make excuses for her.
- Rich Bitch: Even post HeelFace Turn.
- Sanity Slippage: After Cyclope's death in Death of X, she lose her mind (she also fooled everyone into thinking that Scott was alive and, later, killed by Black Bolt) and this lead to her FaceHeel Turn in Inhumans vs. X-Men where try to kill all the Inhumans.
- Second Love: She was Cyclops's second longest lasting girlfriend after Jean Grey, but alas, it didn't work out in the end.
- Secret Public Identity: Since joining the X-Men, she dropped her codename "White Queen". Justified in that "White Queen" isn't just a name, it's a rank in the Inner Circle of the Hellfire Club, which she left to join the X-Men.
- Sexy Mentor: In Uncanny X-Men Vol. 3, she decides to wear a sexy punk-ish outfit when comforting Benjamin after his fight with Scott. It just makes him incredibly uncomfortable since he's only wearing a towel at the time.
- Shameless Fanservice Girl: Emma flaunts any means of power or control she possesses, whether this be political, intellectual, mental, physical or sexual.
- Smug Super: Her problem is that she's good and she knows it.
- So Proud of You: To Kitty in Giant Size Astonishing X-Men #1 and Hisako in the anime.
- Spotlight-Stealing Squad (seems to get more attention in the comics now, than women who've been in the team far longer).
- Steven Ulysses Perhero: Averted. Just because her surname is 'Frost' doesn't mean she uses ice powers.
- Stripperiffic: Her overall body of costumes are some of the most revealing and overtly sexual of any character in the Marvel universe. She does it on purpose as a way of making it easier to distract and manipulate men; as far as she's concerned, it's just another way of automatically putting the ball in her court.
- Sugar-and-Ice Personality: During Generation X, beneath her aloof and apathetic behavior, Emma was a tortured soul who just wanted to be loved and trusted by her teammates. This was carried over by some writers in later X-Books.
- Survivor Guilt: Due to being the sole survivor of the Genosha massacre.
- Team Mom: To her students at least.
- Tragic Heroine: Eventually in Avengers vs. X-Men, she's horrified by her actions in the Phoenix Five.
- Token Evil Teammate: Subverted or played straight, Depending on the Writer.
- Underwear of Power: Her black costume in Uncanny X-Men vol. 3, followed with Zettai Ryouiki to cover her remaining legs.
- Vapor Wear: Her Phoenix Five costume lacks of bra and panties.
- Villain Ball Magnet: Emma struggles to fight her darker urges, and on a few occasions she gives in. It should be noted, however, that for as often as she sometimes indulges in her old lifestyle, she always finds a way to go back to being a true and loyal X-Man.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Her relationship with certain other X-women. In the mini-series that reintroduced Nova (the flaming Herald of Galactus, not that guy), she's this to quite a few superheroines in the Marvel Universe given the number that showed up to her birthday party. They might not like the way she does things, but respect what she can do and she's nothing if not interesting to the more straight-laced heroines.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: She genuinely seeks to help mutantkind and protect her students, but has some serious flaws in the way she goes about it.
- Wolverine Publicity: She has been appearing in a great deal of comics, often just so that she can be there. The worst example is the time when she showed up in one page of one issue of White Tiger's miniseries to tell her that white wasn't her color (after several thugs had mistaken her for Emma... because a dark-haired Hispanic woman and a blonde Caucasian woman are so alike).
- Woman in White: Her defining visual characteristic, in contrast to Selene's black outfit. In New Charles Xavier School for Mutants, however, she starts wearing an all black outfit.
- Working with the Ex: Keeps being a part of the Cyclops-led faction of the X-Men even after they broke up.
- Your Mind Makes It Real: The Torn arc in Astonishing X-Men is a more complex example than most. At first it seems like Emma has betrayed the X-Men and rejoined the Hellfire Club, but it turns out all of them, except for Cassandra Nova, are manifestations of Emma's guilt over being a former villain and her fear of falling back to her old ways. She projects these mental images into the X-Men too, so it seems like individual members of the Hellfire Club are the ones fighting them and messing with their heads. Cassandra had planted a suggestion in her mind before being imprisoned in a cocoon, and simply took advantage of these doubts and fears.
- Zettai Ryouiki: Many of her costumes have consisted of a combination of panties / hot pants and thigh-high stockings or boots.