I didn't notice it until he did the same to Professor X — The wires on Mojo's face are a shout-out to A Clockwork Orange.
Despite losing the majority of his powers, Cable recently seems to be able to survive attacks that would have previously killed him (his throat being slit, multiple bullets in the back and a katana through the chest all the space of a few days). But then one realizes that his former powers help keep his techno-organic virus at bay, now although weaker power-wise he is much more stronger physically because the techno-organics have spread throughout his entire body. "It's hard to completely slit a metal throat" — Wolfthomas
The final chapter of the Dark Phoenix Saga. At first it seems like a BLAM...a massive plotline about how power corrupts ending with a trip to SPACE!!!! But then I realized: The Shi'Ar Empire is acting exactly like humanity would, with their resources and technology, faced with something they couldn't comprehend and were afraid of. JUST LIKE ANTI-MUTANT HYSTERIA. EmpressLilandra even admitted how much she loved Charles Xavier and how much she owed the X-Men, but in the end it wasn't enough to overcome the paranoia, bigotry, and hypocrisy of her own empire. ~ Ingonyama
A second one on Whedon's Astonishing run. At two different points in the initial "Gifted" arc, the Danger Room settings get screwed up—once after Wolverine and Cyclops's fight, seemingly because Hank "forgot to specify scale" when he chose Hawaii as the location, and once after Wolverine and Beast's fight when it appears as a giant child's playroom, an apparently random setting but which Emma finds appropriate. However, looking ahead to the "Dangerous" arc, this could be seen not as errors or randomness but as Foreshadowing of Danger coming alive and sentient and choosing these settings deliberately. Which also proves she has something of a sense of humor!
Wolverine in general. He often refers to himself as a "canucklehead". When I read this in my youth, I always thought he was pronouncing the silent "K" in knucklehead because he wasn't particularly bright (all that struggling with his animal side perhaps robbing him of higher cognitive function, I figured). Returning to comics after having experienced the world more myslef, I came to understand that he was talking about being both hard-headed (the adamantium helps) and a canuck—a Canadian. Guess who felt like the knucklehead then? ~ NeutronPong
A moment that struck while reading Evil Only Has to Win Once, which mentions how notable it is that the X-Men's bad futures seem to ignore all the other heroes—which almost immediately brought to mind the Days of Future Past. In that future, the Sentinels killed all the mutants. During a war like that, how many non-mutant heroes would fight against the Sentinels due to having mutant family (the Fantastic Four), mutant friends (Spider-Man), or just out of principle (Captain America and most Avengers)? To kill the mutants means you'd have to go through them. And the Sentinels did. And how much of a leap would it be for the Sentinels to focus on the rest of the meta human population before turning on the "normal" humans? ~ Shotoman
It's not so much all down to personal loyalties and duty, neither. Heroes like Spider-Man might be friends with mutants, but they themselves are mutates, having had their genetic make-up messed around (here, by being bitten by a radioactive spider). It's not much of a big leap for the Sentinels to go from attacking mutants to attacking human mutates.
As Text From Superheroes Put It, "There are Sentinels in the area, thought I'd give you a heads up." "Oh, I'll be fine, I'm not a mutant." "Have fun explaining that to the giant killer robot."
A bit of Fridge Brilliance for the main villain Magneto. Note this is not my piece of fridge brilliance but one that amazed me when I read them in the comments section on Cracked.
"I used to like Magneto as a villain. He seemed to truly believe in mutant superiority and what he was doing. Then I remember an episode of the cartoon when he left Professor x during WWII and turned evil. He said that humans were doomed because they "can't even make peace with themselves." By this reasoning Magneto believed humans would never accept mutants because they fight amongst their own kind.Then as I grew older I start to think more on the subject. And eventually it came to me, what did Magneto really do? He gathered a bunch of mutants that believed in him and fought against OTHER FREAKING MUTANTS. He fights the x-men because they don't agree with him, he has fought apocalypse, and other mutants throughout the series. So humans are doomed because they "can't even make peace with themselves" yet mutants seem to have the same problem. So what does that make magneto? The same old hypocritical and stupid generic villain every comic book story has." -Walter Lives
And the reply to it adding more brilliance to the mix- "Wait, you think Magneto's hypocrisy is that they and the humans both fight among themselves? You're missing the obvious one here. You know who ELSE thought that their species, or say, race, was superior? The same ones who killed his whole family. He literally became a Super-Hitler, coming far closer to killing all humans than the Nazis came to killing all there 'undesirables'. That's his big hypocrisy there." -The Naive Skeptic
Magneto fight the x-men because of ideological differences and because they get in his way and many times he have wanted Xavier to work with him side by side to help out mutants. He fights Xavier and his x-men because of his beliefs not because they have different powers.
That's a pretty good realization, though I don't think the final summation of him being a 'Super Hitler' or a 'stupid generic villain' holds much weight. Besides Silver Age!Magneto or badly written Grant Morrison!Magneto, Mags rarely tries to wipe out humanity; rather, he tries to wipe out their ability to harm his people. It doesn't really make him a weak villain, in fact it serves as a Fatal Flaw that stops him from crossing into being just a straight-up Anti-Hero; like all extremists, he's just as guilty of the same things he credits his persecutors for, which is why he's still ultimately a villain.
Creator Rob Liefeld has been critical of Shatterstar's outing as an enthusiastic bisexual. However, one has to remember that Shatterstar is from Mojoworld, a dimension where entertainment is everything. It was almost inevitable that Shatterstar would eventually become interested in media outside of his own genre (gladiator fights), and since so much entertainment centers around sex, he would naturally become fascinated by it sooner or later.
Fridge Horror: Given that the X-Men are only ever shown intercepting with a mutant who's either in danger or has a power that makes them a potential hazard to themselves or others, its safe to assume that the million+ mutants we never see but are mentioned probably don't have powers that are particularly dangerous. Its clear mutants with cool powers are a minority given that civilian mutants, when they appear, tend to just be physically mutated people living in poor conditions who's powers are either passive or limited simply to physical traits that are useless in most situations. However, as they're the ones who live in the streets and not in mansions or anything, they're the ones who face the brunt force of hatred from humans and any counter-measures they employ. So, picture this scenario: You're a mutant, born with a harmless ability, if that (it could be anything, down to naturally pink skin or the ability to make people forget you exist after they stop paying attention to you), and then here comes the Sentinels, designed to hunt down the most dangerous mutants. You can't run away fast enough, you can't hide, and unlike the X-Men, you can't fight back. This is the reality most mutants face.
Something I noted as Reality Is Unrealistic, but also fitting here. A lot of people often go on about how the X-Men 'don't fit' with the Marvel Universe because people seem to be OK with other, non-mutant superhumans, but for some reason think mutants are scum. Supposedly, it doesn't make sense to hate mutants if you don't have a problem with other superheroes, but here's the reality people forget: Bigotry in real life doesn't make sense either. There is no real, logical reason to hate black people, or Asian people, or gay people, or any other minority, yet people do it anyway; on top of that, its really not uncommon for someone to hate one minority group with a passion but not have any problem with another, even if there's ultimately no real difference between the groups. Bigotry is unreasonable by nature, so of course the mutant haters aren't going to make sense.
X-Men: The Animated Series
This only occurred to me when watching the series but I always wondered why Mister Sinister was so pale and gross in the comics, then I realized he was supposed to represent the idea of a vampire.
I actually like that Magneto isn't a Holocaust survivor in the animated series (not that there would be any way to justify that in-setting and be on children's television). It just makes it a generic "war" he's survived with his family killed. In many ways, it makes him much more applicable across a broad spectrum of origins.
In the opening sequence, Warpath is grouped with Magneto and the villains, despite being a long-serving member of X-Force in the comics. At first this appears to be a careless mistake...but in fact, he was originally introduced as an antagonist in the comics, out for revenge against the X-Men over the death of his brother Thunderbird.
Still doesn't have much sense from the show's perspective, since Warpath appears in the series proper only once, without any lines and, most importantly, fighting on the side of X-Men (during the liberation of the mutant concentration camp).
It's not irrational to theorize that was an Enemy Mine situation, since some of said concentration camp's mutants were villains.
Upon reading about some of the character's origins and re-watching episodes: Brilliance - The (originally) cartoon only character Morph is based off the (616) comic character "Changeling", who was killed off for real many years ago...except for the time he was brought back from the dead as a zombie by Black Talon, whose control he resisted due to his sense of loyalty. After becoming unexpectedly popular, Morph is brought back from the dead, in a zombie-like form, by Mr. Sinister, whose control he resisted due to his loyalty to the X-Men. (His return as a zombie occurred in She-Hulk in 1992, season 2 of the cartoon began in October of 1993.)
In "Slave Island" Jubilee is thrown into a sweat box for trying to escape the island. We later see her sweating and complaining about the heat, but she's still wearing her jacket.
More of an IJBM than Fridge, methinks.
Risty's accent. Despite the fact that she claims to be from Manchester, England to Rogue in Growing Pains, she has a very generic and stereotypical English accent. Which makes no sense until you realize that she's actually Mystique, who, while she may have been to Manchester in the past, knew that Rogue hadn't (due to Mystique and Irene raising Rogue) and therefore saw no need in providing an authentic accent when a more generic one would be just as convincing.
Wolverine And The X-Men
I always wondered why they went with the idea of making Scott into the angry loner and Wolverine into the badly fit leader. Then I realized that it wasn't just because of ratings. Professor X needs someone who is a brutal guerrilla fighter who doesn't mind getting his hands dirty to defeat the government gone wild. Cyclops is still needed because he needs to channel his rage over Jean's abduction into a weapon against the enemy. The X-men in this series, basically, are X-force.
A bit of Fridge Horror that hit me while watching the episode "Badlands." Before Genosha got annihilated by the war, it was an island nation of the African shore of the Indian Ocean. Afterwards, it's surrounded by a desert. Is it just me, or did the war between humans and mutants completely evaporate the ocean!?
That, and Wade Wilson's stint as Weapon XI? What sort of horrifying experimentation and mental conditioning do you think he went through? It's the perfect set-up for the famous Deadpool insanity! And it's even followed up on in one of the endings, when Deadpool's head looks at the camera.
If you read The Once and Future King (featured in X2: X-Men United) after watching the X-Men movies, you will find dozens of ways that it is relevant, some of which, based on the film commentary, the directors weren't even thinking of. For example:
Obviously, the ending of the Arthurian mythos is about good friends being divided by differing principles and priorities and fighting each other.
There's a lot of discussion (by Merlin) of the need to forget and move on from past, and even ongoing, oppression and injustice, on the basis that starting a war is inherently wrong even if you've got a lot of justification for doing so.
Arthur, early in his kingship, is described as a cheerful and idealistic young man who more or less regards suffering as non-existent due to not having truly experienced any. Now watch X-Men: First Class and look at Xavier...
Wonder why Jean Grey suddenly went psychotic with the power of the Phoenix in X-Men: The Last Stand? She has been trapped under water for an indefinite period of time, and in addition to her schizophrenic personality being released, it's quite likely she suffered brain damage.
It takes Professor X so much longer to find all the mutants, who are a much smaller portion of the population, then it did for him to find all the humans. The reason why had already been provided earlier in the film. Xavier had trouble locking on to Nightcrawler because he's a teleporter and his mind is slippery to a psychic. It may suggest that other mutants are mildly shielded against telepaths, and it makes sense that Professor X has a much harder time finding all of the mutants than humans who have no shielding against him.
Some fans chalked up the lack of Cerebro in X3 to just being something cut for time. However, you'll recall that in X2, Stryker stole either the entire thing or most of it, and that Nightcrawler couldn't take any of it with him when he was getting Storm and Xavier out of the Dark Cerebro room.
One of the commentaries in X2 (possibly inadvertently) lampshades this, joking that after the horrible experiences Xavier had in the first two movies, Cerebro would be turned into the swimming pool. Think about it, first the sabotage by Mystique in X1, then being trapped in his own head and subsequently mind controlled into nearly killing first all mutants, then the rest of the population. He's got to be sick of it by X3!
The first X-Men movie is essentially a loose adaptation of "Days of Future Past" that reverses the roles of the X-Men and the Brotherhood. In both versions, Senator Robert Kelly tries to get the Mutant Registration Act passed through Congress, the Brotherhood targets him in retaliation, the X-Men jump in to save him, and one side is motivated by horrific memories of living in a concentration camp. The difference? In the movie, Magneto is the one haunted by memories of concentration camp life. In the comics, it's the X-Men.
In the movie, Magneto suffered horribly in Auschwitz, so he and the Brotherhood kidnap Senator Kelly, fearing that his actions will lead mutants to a similar fate. In the comics, the X-Men suffer horribly in a Sentinel-run concentration camp in the future, so they go back in time to save Kelly from the Brotherhood, hoping that this will stop the years of conflict that created their Bad Future in the first place. The X-Men and their nemesis suffer the same fate, but take completely opposite actions in response.
Meta Brilliance: Magneto knows all about being part of a persecuted minority.
In First Class, Shaw's mutant minions are all extremely powerful mutants in their own right. Why did he have such potent subordinates? Easy: he started almost 20 years before Charles and Erik began searching for new mutants.
At the climax of X-Men: First Class when Xavier begs Magneto to spare the soldiers that fired upon them, stating that "they were only following orders," that was indeed one of the worst things to say to a Holocaust survivor of all people, but it's brilliant when you remember that Charles was a telepath for the majority of his life and could always look into people's minds to say the right things to get them to do what he wanted. The only person he refused to scan was Raven, and he therefore often made insensitive comments around her. With Magneto wearing the protective helmet, Xavier has been deprived of a sense that for him is as vital as sight, so when he unexpectedly loses it, he found himself in the position of a man who is suddenly blinded and expected to process visual cues.
In First Class a lot of people think Mystique's defection to Magneto was rushed, but take a closer look at events. Every time she shows even hints of her real form, Xavier criticizes her, making her feel less comfortable about herself, leading to her maintaining a human cover, which puts a strain on her. Note than in the first scene with her as an adult, she takes on her mutant form when she's not in public. Following that conversation with Xavier, she maintains a human form all the time, even when she's with her friends, other mutants. Then she finds kinship in Beast, who also does not accept her real form. The only guy who encourages her to take the emotional pressure off of herself and be who she really is, is Magneto. She didn't go to Magneto simply because she was in love with him, she went because she no longer felt comfortable hiding who she was and living a lie due to her brother.
There's potentially another side to this, though. Charles is uncomfortable when she brings up dating him and shows up naked, sure, but has no problem with platonic cuddling when she's dressed. Erik effectively tells her her natural body is a costume, and needs no further covering. As far as acceptance goes, there is room for interpretation. Plus, it's not like she wouldn't have to hide with Mags, too.
In First Class, there is constant mention of Neanderthals and Cro-Magnons to parallel the rise of mutants, which is a nice call-back to a scene near the beginning of X-Men 2 when Storm explains the history of Neanderthals with modern science hinting that Neanderthals might not have been wiped out completely by Cro-Mognons. Science Marches On indeed!
In the finale of First Class Stryker is seen trying to convince the joint chiefs to fire on the mutants. Such authorization would have to come from Kennedy himself because, at very least, they are firing on foreign soil. Magneto is shown to have a revenge streak a mile long. Kennedy dies less then a year later to bullets that take a very unusual path through his body. Put it together...
Matthew Vaughn has actually said that if there's a sequel, he wants this to be how it starts.
Take a look at the coastline of the beach they're firing on... it looks quite a bit like Guantanamo Bay◊, which is US territory and therefore would not require presidential approval to fire upon.
Take another look at the First Class Cerebro scene, while Charles is tracking down the mutants. The typical humans are shown in black and white, while the mutants are in full, vibrant color. It occurred to me after this film that this is how Charles sees mutants in relation to the rest of the world. Humans are old-fashioned and dull, while mutants are vibrant and beautiful. An indication that for all of his talk of cooperation between humans and mutants, he isn't free of his own prejudices? (wallwalker)
Don't forget that Cerebro is a mutant detection system. What sense is a detection system if it doesn't mark the things you are looking for to make them stand out? The humans are no mutants, therefore not relevant, therefore not marked.
So how in the world can a kid possibly convince his parents to adopt a strange, little girl who broke into their house... oh right, he's a telepath who can control minds.
Fridge Horror for Hank, if you use X-Men comic canon to fill in the movie-related gaps (and igre continuity errors). Not only did he warp into a very hard to ignore blue furry mutant, but Raven left him and eventualoly hooked up with Azazel the mutant that murdered his father!
Half way between Fridge Brilliance and Wild Mass Guessing: In the comics, Havok (aka Alex Summers) is Cyclops (aka Scott Summers) brother. While no connection is made between the two in the movies, Havok's blasts look very similar to Cyclops. And while Havok is definately too old to be Cyclops brother, he's just the right age to be his father.
What about Alex Summers Jr. being Cyclop's brother? He inherited his father's ability as well, but the exact same instead of eye blasts. or, like his comic book incarnation, Alex (Jr.) could have gotten "hand blasts" like Cyclops getting "eye blasts". Variations of the same power, inherited. Maybe the title "Havok" will be passed from father to son?
Don't think so; if you look closely at the Cerebro scene, you can see a boy that looks like a young Scott (ya know, the one with the baseball and the sunglasses?)
That makes no sense, though, unless Scott was an incredibly spry and youthful 50-something by the time of the original movie.
Mystique working those oversized barbells in First Class may have been their explanation for her level of badass in the first three movies, turning from the traditional Femme Fatale of the comics and cartoon into a martial arts expert.
In the comics, Darwin just teleported away from the Hulk rather than adapt into something that could beat him - which helps the fan theory that he survived Shaw's cherry bomb, by teleporting away and leaving the exploding blast where he was.
Or as I thought in the cinema and got me a “Shh“ from the whole audience; He could transfer his energy to Havok since he survived like that his very first time as an X-men.
In X3 the Proffesor and Magneto go to Jean's childhood home where she is waiting for them. No one else is seen in the house beside these three, and considering that Jean's parents must have still lived there, due to their surname 'Grey' being on the mailbox afer 20 years or so... this means that after arriving at her old home, Jean (or rather the Phoneix) killed and vapourised her parents...
We don't know that they were home at the time.
In X3 I thought Magneto's plan seemed...well, not very well thought out. I understood his tactics, but his using "the pawns" as human (mutant?) shields and wasting literally hundreds of mutants went against Magneto's belief in mutants being precious and better than humanity. Then I remembered Erik has just lost the two constants in his life, the only true companions he had since the camps - Mystique to the Cure and Charles, his oldest friend, to the Phoenix. Of course he's going to have a weak plan, he's thrown it together while he was angry and upset.
In the first three X-Men movies, I always wondered why Mystique was nude besides Rule of Sexy. Even in the the comics, she at least had some type of clothing. In First Class, we get to see her struggle with her appearance and wanting to be normal. Even with her fellow mutants, Raven keeps the appearance of looking like everyone else, hiding her her real appearance. When Erik comes along, he tells her that her true form is beautiful and encourages her to stop trying look like everyone else. In the scene where she appears in her natural blue appearance nude before Charles before the big mission, we not only see how they've grown apart but when she stops hiding her true form. Her being nude shows Raven is no longer hiding her true self and no longer conforming to society.
At the beginning of the second movie, Storm is talking about Neanderthals and Cro-Magnon men. At first it seems unimportant, but then I realize it can be applied to humans and mutants: Magneto believes mutants will replace humans (theory that Cro-Magnons replaced Neanderthals), while the X-Men believe thet co-existance is possible (theory that modern humans are the result of Neanderthals mating with the Cro-Magnon)
Magneto's disgusted remark of "You homo sapiens and your guns" in the first movie makes all the more sense if you remember how his mother died and Charles lost the use of his legs in X-Men: First Class.
Hank's disgust at something he himself once tried in the third film makes perfect sense: when he joined the others in the hanger, and they still accepted him, he realized Raven had been right the night before.
X-Men First Class is a Deconstruction of the Silver Age, which is appropriately where its origins lay. Charles Xavier, brilliant scientist and cheerful patriot for his country, ends up betrayed by his own country for being a mutant and has his best friend and his adoptive sister leave him when it became apparent their ideals differed from his. Erik Lehnsherr, Holocaust survivor and Anti-Hero, ends up adopting his enemy's philosophy and turning against mankind. The teenage super team ends up with one of their party dead, two performing a Face-Heel Turn, and the other three deeply traumatized from having to fight. Science ends up causing as many problems as it fixed. The idea of having nuclear power enhance the X-gene is immediately scoffed at. Women and minorities are pushed into the background and therefore either lash out (Mystique and Angel) or prove much deadlier than they appear (Moira and Emma Frost).
Similarly, X-Men Days of Future Past was a very decent homage as well as Deconstruction of the Bronze Age, with the government and large corporations being portrayed as corrupt and evil, but only in the hands of corrupt and evil people like Boliver Trask. The heroes and anti-heroes are disillusioned and harsh towards one another, particularly Charles Xavier, but a good deal of his character development involves him learning to hope and trust again so as to save the future.
Magneto's description of God in X-Men sounds a lot like Professor X, and the connection becomes more obvious after it's revealed in X2: X-Men United that Magneto views mutants to be gods among insects, and there is no one in the world he respects (and loves, as we learn in X-Men: First Class) more than his old friend.
Magneto: I've always thought of God as a teacher, a bringer of light, wisdom, and understanding.
The second X-Men movie involves a plot in which Professor Xavier is brainwashed into using a copy of Cerebro to attempt to wipe out the human race. The heroes manage to interrupt him before Xavier can actually kill anyone - but a scene montage shows that an undetermined amount of people experienced a severe headache for a short time. The movie doesn't give any details on how many people were affected, but the montage implies that A LOT of people experienced the severe headache. Now, think about what would happen if a huge number of people were suddenly affected by a severe headache that incapacitated them, even for a short time.
Car crashes, plane crashes, surgeons screwing things up in the middle of surgery...
In the movies, Magneto is a surivivor of the Holocaust and his experiences with Nazi Germany has led to his fierce commitment for mutant rights. Yet he is not a peacful mutant right advocist, but basically he represents a point of view of "Mutant Supremacy". He wants to wipe out normal humans because he feels they are inferior. So there is no difference between the Nazis and Magneto, both view(ed) some other human beings as inferior races which do not have a right to exist and have to be wiped out.
The Nazis based their philosophy on racial superiority. Magneto's is based on evolutionary superiority. A subtle difference, but an important one in his mind. One could argue that he would seek a peaceful alternative if he thought that was a viable option, but based on his experiences, it isn't. The Nazis attacked other races based on unsubstantiated fear whereas Magneto has mankind's well-documented history as a stupid and violent race on which base his own fears.
I don't believe he mentioned it in First Class (where he seemed to be driven mostly by pure revenge) but comic and original trilogy Magneto has often taken the Holocaust as evidence that humans kill others just for being different. And if humans will commit genocide over difference in race, an entirely different species had better take a "them or us" stance and strike first.
The third movie ends with Rogue taking the cure so she can be with Iceman, but as the ending goes on to show, the cure isn't permanent. Bobby had better hope he's not doing anything that involves physical contact with the girl that he can touch for the first time in their relationship when the cure wears off.
Canon holds that Rogue is a Class 2 mutant, and Magneto a Class 6. The cure could very well work entirely on Rogue and leave Magneto with power.
On a more positive note, if the cure doesn't prove permanent for Rogue, she's still got Leech there with her at the school. Spare another milliliter of cure serum for Rogue, Leech?
Also, if the return of Magneto's powers are any indication, the happy couple will get some fair warning in advance. Magneto could only just wobble that chess piece a bit. The first indication for Rogue will be when she suddenly starts feeling kind of cold and realizes she can see her breath, and Iceman's feeling a bit worn out just from kissing her.
In "First Class", Charles leaves Shaw paralyzed momentarily, so he can't hurt Erik. Then, Erik proceeds to kill Shaw by driving a metal coin through his head. Erik is now delighted he has killed and tortured his enemy- cause let's face it, a metal coin through the skull will hurt. Wrong. Charles had incapacitated Shaw by putting his conscience into Shaw's head so to control him. It was Shaw who died because it was his brain the coin was put through- but it was Charles who felt every moment of a small, metal, object being driven through his skull. Nice one, Erik.
Since Charles hadn't reached puberty yet when we see him as a kid in 1944, that means a traumatic event triggered his mutation—most probably it was the death of his father.
Thought why would he need it, since Shaw specifically mentions being able to absorb energy, and unlike his comic version, it isn't limited to kinetic energy, as he was able to absorb both a grenade blast and a lot of radiation. Shouldn't that count for whatever energy is used for telepaths to read minds? Assuming the phrase 'Psychic energy' often used in comics to describe telepaths and telekinetics use of their powers applies to the films too, as noted previously, thought now removed for some reason.
Actually a grenade blast is kinetic energy.
Tin. It is a well known secret that tin blocks outside brain waves from getting in. It's why tin has been mostly replaced by aluminum for civilian purposes.
Shaw's entire plan in First Class: Putting aside the genocide and assuming Shaw is correct that mutants would be able to weather the radiation... Between the mutants that would die in the nuclear blasts themselves, those that would die of starvation and disease before they could be found by Shaw (assuming he would actually look for them) and those whose mutations would kill them once activated or altered by the radiation, you MIGHT have a couple thousand mutants worldwide to inherit the earth. That's probably not enough to repopulate the world with genetic sustainability — again assuming that the fallout hasn't sterilized a significant portion of the survivors. Of course, Shaw was never portrayed as being particularly sane.
Shaw threw Erik around while inside the nuclear chamber, and while getting his ass kicked Erik showed no signs of the negative side effects of being in a nuclear chamber. So apparently, mutants are immune to radiation. Thought, this is also the 1940-60s, while we understood radiation isn't friendly, we still didn't know everything about it. Shaw was shown to be qualified in genetics, its possible his knowledge of radiation isn't exactly that great, and just assumed "Hey, mutants are immune to radiation, and I can both manipulate a Nuclear holocaust and turn myself into an atomic bomb. Lets see how this all plays out, maybe I can genocide all humans and leave the mutants to live freely, For Science!!!." Of course, it was never mentioned what his plan was for food after all the animals are wiped out, unless he plans for them to eat each... Lets not think about it.
With the number of nukes both sides had at the time of the historical Cuban Missile Crisis, the entire world would hardly be a lifeless wasteland. One of the reasons to Soviets wanted missiles on Cuba was the fact that nuclear ICB Ms were still relatively new tech, and being able to hit the US with short-ranged missiles would seriously increase the number of nukes the USSR could actually deliver onto US soil.
Also, most of the damage in a 1960's nuclear war would be limited to the US, USSR, and Europe. Shaw might have just planned on building his new mutant civilization in Australia, Africa, South America, or some other place that would be relatively unscathed.
Remember that First Class was set in the 60s - the era that brought us heroes like Spiderman (bit by a radioactive spider), The Hulk (caught in a Gamma Bomb blast) and the Fantastic Four (bombarded with cosmic radiation). Shaw's plan seems downright logical from that perspective.
Something to be noted is that studies show that the number of people roughly need to sustain a viable human population without causing genetic in-breeding is 500, so 2,000 mutants would be more than enough to maintain a viable mutant population.
X-Men in other media
Fridge Logic: So, Yui Sasaki in X-Men is confronted by the fact that her son Takeo is a Reality Warper. His father, who doesn't know he exists yet, is a powerful telepath who has dedicated his life to helping mutants learn to control their powers and use them safely. So, clearly the best thing to do is to ensure he never finds out about Takeo, make her son erase his existence from the minds of everyone around him, lock him up in a research center out in the middle of nowhere, and start working madly on an "anti-X-Gene retro virus", a process that requires killing who-knows-how-many other mutants to use their tissues to culture it in. Can lean into What an Idiot territory.