What happened? Where did everything go wrong, Northstar?
It wasn't when he came out to his country and his team, believe it or not. The whole comic was rather seminal (despite being really badly drawn) and well accepted by the public, if a little forgotten as of late. He left the team and wrote a book, not the first in the Marvel Universe to do so (Rick Jones's Sidekick, Betty Banner's Fields of Green, and Kitty Pryde's ... I know she wrote something, didn't she?) and did a book tour to talk about his life as a mutant and homosexual. So, Northstar had to come out previously on his being a mutant and competing in the Olympics and then had to come out about his sexual preference. Man's got some serious courage.
Jean Grey shows up at a book signing and asks him to come help the X-Men out and save Xavier. Remeber when they used to do that? Yeah. End of the day, they ask him to stay and, seeing the opportunity to mentor awkward kids like he used to be and remembering all the help Raymonde Belmonde provided to him, he took a job as a teacher. This is great. He's an X-Man now, rubbing around in shades and an modified uniform (the original is rather stylish), and was a rather high profile guy.
Chuck Austen did a lot of things in his run that a bunch of people never really enjoyed (myself included as he tore down a lot of the building up of Lorna Dane that had come before), but he managed to treat Northstar fairly decently. He had a crush on Bobby Drake, leading to internet fangirl squeeing of epic proportions, but it didn't immediately make Bobby gay or Northstar something pervvy. He became a good friend to Austen's Single Mom of the Week, became a counselor over on New X-Men: Academy X and it seemed like an openly gay character was getting some good panel time in a Marvel Comic.
Then Wolverine went nuts thanks to HYDRA and went to the X-Mansion. While the team and teachers were out looking for him, the berserker attempted to stab Kitty Pryde who phased out of the way. Not so much for Northstar, who took the shot in the gut, impaling him on a tree, and died. A punk way to go, but the start of things to come for the New X-Men.
Boy do I wish it ended there. So, apparently Elixir managed to heal Northstar's wounds but could not revive him. Since I don't have the issue and am going on second hand info, I'm going to assume this means that he's not in a coma, but really dead without puncture wounds. Because, you have to understand, SHIELD wanted to decapitate him. SHIELD showed up because of the Wolverine Thing(tm) and I guess thought it their business to tell the X-Men what to do with their dead. The X-Men say no, we'd rather contact his family (so, what.... Aurora? Raymonde? I don't think he really talked to the Martins all that much...) and then Electra shows up and steals the body for HYDRA.
Man can not catch a break.
HYDRA does the same brainwashing technique they used on Wolverine (see previous stabbing) and make him one of their new assassins. And give him some Harajuku kids too; it worked for Gwen Stefani. He runs around and targets a bunch of close-minded homophobes for terrible death. He tells Wolverine that he had to take pills because he was so miserable teaching at Xavier's. Then he tells one of his new minions to put on some music to make him feel 'mad and nasty'. Thankfully, after an obscene amount of monologing villainy from Northstar, Wolverine punches him out.
From here, SHIELD comes back and probably does an I Told You So about that decapitating thing. Though Nick Fury himself tells Kitty Pryde he has no idea what happened to Northstar, they apparently had him in a deprogramming thingamabob in the last issue of Mike Carey's X-Men. Wolverine's mind is a CDR apparently, while Northstar is a little harder to deprogram, requiring complicated headsets and weird mental landscaping. A brand new Evil Group has sprung him out and are reprogramming him for more evil.
At least he has his sister back.
For one brief shining moment, Northstar was a prominent member of the X-Men, one of the most high-profile superteams in comics. He was openly gay, but it wasn't his entire personality. He came from a lot of heavy situations and was stronger for them. He was a good role model for kids.
And now he's being used..
Well, let's see where this goes.