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     Madelyne Pryor 

Madelyne Jennifer Pryor-Summers
Surprise. It appears your devices have limits. And I don't.
AKA: Anodyne, Goblyn Queen, Black Rook, Red Queen
Debut: Uncanny X-Men #168 (1983)

During Jean Grey's first death, Cyclops flew to Alaska with his family, where he met a charming, red-headed commercial airline pilot... who looked exactly like her. They fell in love, married, and had a son together... then Jean Grey came back. Cyclops left Madelyne alone with their son to go back to superheroing, just in time for her to be targeted by Mr. Sinister. As it turned out, her entire past was faked... she was a clone of Jean, designed to be a "brood mare" for Scott's son so Sinister could have his hands on the most powerful mutant in history. Needless to say, she didn't take this news well...

  • Aborted Arc: Originally Madelyne was not intended to be Jean's clone at all, but instead an Identical Stranger (which has some Unfortunate Implications on its own for Cyclops, but isn't as bad as the eventual marital abandonment he'd pull). Of course, this made Maddie in practice just a Replacement Goldfish for Jean, and after the writers got permission to bring Jean Back from the Dead they no longer needed Madelyne. But since she and Scott were Happily Married by this time and had a child, simply having her fade into the background wasn't an option. Hence her very swift turn to the dark side.
    • Another one occurs in X-Man. The entire first half of the run has a subplot involving Madelyne and the Hellfire Club, which appeared to be leading up to a showdown between Madelyne and Selene for the title of Black Queen. Then, abruptly and without fanfare Madelyne just walked away from the Club, turning her back on a carefully built alliance/partnership with Sebastian Shaw to go looking for Nate Grey with no reason given in-story or out. Details are scarce, but it is presumed this arc was just of the many 90s plots that fell by the wayside thanks to the high creator turnover and backstage politics of the period.
  • Action Survivor: Got her start as one of these, being an ordinary woman (later retconned into having dormant powers) thrust into dangerous situations alongside the X-Men. She graduated to Badass Normal and Pregnant Badass before her Face–Heel Turn.
  • All for Nothing: Inferno and Madelyne's death, in Hindsight. 1) Everyone now knows how things would go between Cyclops and Jean Grey. 2) The image of Cyclops keeps re-sinking, even though Marvel keeps on trying to re-float him. 3) Grey's parents would later end up getting slaughtered anyway... by space aliens.
  • And I Must Scream: How she was tricked into making a Deal with the Devil. The demons S'ym and N'astirh sent her visions, which she thought were just nightmares, of her husband taking their baby son away from her and then systematically taking away all her physical features — clothes, then hair, then mouth and nose and eyes — and putting them on a featureless mannequin revealed to be Jean Grey. When it's done, Jean is real again and Maddie is the featureless mannequin, unable to even scream. They walk away happily and with the baby, leaving the naked and faceless Maddie to struggle alone through a blistering wasteland burning her away. Major Nightmare Fuel for anyone who read that issue as a kid, or even as an adult.
  • Arch-Enemy: To Jean Grey, at least up until Jean's second death; and also to Cyclops, until his status got diminished almost into A Scrappy and is repeatedly hit with Take That, Scrappy!. Madelyne has since become a more independent villain.
  • Atrocious Alias: Such a childish sounding moniker as "Goblin Queen" has been hard to take seriously from the start. Marvel's staffers seem to be aware of this, because (except in some alternate-reality stories) Pryor has never been called the Goblin Queen since Inferno concluded in 1989. note 
    • After not using any alias on Madelyne Pryor since 1989 (the "Black Rook" alias barely applied), in 2009's Sisterhood story arc Marvel tried calling her the "Red Queen". But after Disney's Alice in Wonderland (2010), apparently Marvel decided they couldn't use that moniker anymore, so no alias was mentioned when Pryor returned again in 2014.
  • Back from the Dead: Resurrected first by Nate Grey, then by Arkea.
  • Badass Normal: Started out as a commercial pilot with a mean right hook, then during her time on the run from Sinister's Marauders, she joined the X-Men out of necessity and became their tech support, managing to pull her weight on the team without any (apparent) powers at all.
  • Bad Powers, Bad People: In addition to her Psychic Powers, at the height of her Goblyn Queen phase, Madelyne could draw out the innate evil in things and people, which she used to turn the X-Men against X-Factor.
  • Barrier Warrior: As the Goblyn Queen she erected a barrier around herself and Jean Grey to fight her without interference. It was totally unbreachable until Longshot successfully pinpointed its one weak spot with his luck powers, allowing the rest of the team to strike and break through it.
  • Berserk Button: Do not mention Mr. Sinister around her. Nate and Tessa both found out up close and personal why this was a bad idea.
  • Bookends: Shortly before Summers had proposed marriage to Pryor, Kitty Pryde asked and handed Lockheed over to Madelyne to babysit. Two (meta)-years later, Pryde again asked and handed Lockheed to her to babysit, which was just before what became the beginning of the end of both the marriage and of Maddie as a straightforward character.
  • Broken Bird: Starting from the marriage disintegrating to up until the start of Inferno, for four meta-years Pryor was characterized as being this. Then subverted entirely during Inferno which recharacterized Pryor as being all Hate Sink with zero redeeming qualities or actions.note 
  • Call-Back:
    • When Nate Grey is cradling her after she had collapsed unconscious in X-Man #25, her arms, fingers, and legs are all positioned the same way as when Jean Grey cradled Madelyne when she was dead in Uncanny X-Men #243.
    • In Avengers Annual #10 (1981), which centered around Carol Danvers (Ms. Marvel), there was a one-time background extra named "Maddy Pryor" (no relation or connection, except the same writer of X-Men). Three decades later, Secret Wars (2015) #7 had Maddie Pryor get beaten up by Danvers (now Captain Marvel).
    • Just before Phoenix went Hellfire Black-Queen going on to Dark P., she drew Cyclops into an (*ahem*) "intimate" afternoon on top of a mesa. And then just before Inferno started, Madelyne drew Havok into her bed. note 
    • Uncanny X-Men #171 in 1983 showed Pryor and Cyclops sharing pajamas with Madelyne wearing the shirt and Scott the pants after spending an intimate night together. A flashback story in X-Men: The Exterminated in 2019 shows them that way again when they're sharing a bed with their baby son Nathan between them.
  • Came Back Strong: Her numerous resurrections seem to have had this effect, as after the first one she took on both Nate Grey and Jean Grey at once and was having the best of that encounter - though it has to be noted that she was draining Nate's powers at the time. On her third resurrection courtesy of Arkea she proved capable of flattening Rachel Grey in one shot.
  • Came Back Wrong: Her first resurrection courtesy of Nate Grey was somewhat this, as she was not actually a living, breathing person, but rather a physical manifestation of psionic energy that was to some degree still tainted by her corruption and death. Mutant death-senser Threnody noticed this and confronted her with it, leading Maddie to have a Villainous Breakdown and kill her in response.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Somewhat towards Scott, definitely (and frighteningly) towards Nate.
  • Chess Motifs: During her time in the Hellfire Club she held the rank of Black Rook.
  • Cloning Blues: She's a clone of Jean Grey created by Mister Sinister, and Mister Sinister late created six more clones of her to absorb the Phoenix.
  • Composite Character: In a summarization of the X-Men's history in X-Men: Grand Design, Pryor's debut and first adventures are mixed with those of Lee Forrester, Cyclops' previous girlfriend before Pryor.
  • Continuity Snarl: Was she killed by Queen Jean back in X-Man? Was she actually Queen Jean herself? Thanks to that story's obscurity and an Unreliable Narrator, we may never know.
  • invokedCry for the Devil: There was quite of bit of that for Pryor; enough in fact that Marvel's intentions to Un-person her out of their comics forever didn't work.
  • Dark Action Girl: Evolved into one, and during her Red Queen phase she organized an entire team of Dark Action Girls, the Sisterhood of Mutants.
  • Deal with the Devil: Which unlocked both her Psychic Powers and Black Magic. She made said deal in a dream, and explicitly didn't believe it was real... but the demons considered it binding anyway.
  • Death Is Cheap: Let's see... killed in Inferno, resurrected by Nate Grey, killed again (possibly) by an evil alternate version of Jean, showed up as a psychic ghost to Cyclops and Cable on the Astral Plane, then resurrected again (maybe) as the Red Queen, where she died yet again. The fans took bets on how long it would stick. Indeed, she came back in X-Men (2013).
  • Drunk on the Dark Side: Combines this with Badass Boast after her Villainous Breakdown in X-Man #25:
    Madelyne (after being told she's still dead): I breathe, I think, I feel... I've got power, and I most certainly live!
  • Empowered Badass Normal: Pre-Inferno there was a storyline where Madelyne was granted Healing Hands powers from drinking the enchanted water of an Asgardian fountain.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Genocide is too much for Madelyne to stomach, as she once tipped off Cable to a plot of her old flame Sebastian Shaw to use a device belonging to Apocalypse in the hopes of harnessing his power (and destroying all of London in the process).
  • Evil Redhead: Though she didn't start out this way, she eventually became the poster child for this.
  • Evil Twin: She became this to Jean Grey eventually.
  • Evil Wears Black: Before her descent into darkness, Pryor always wore either bright colors or work-clothes in earthy tones, and rarely any darks. Since her descent, she is nearly always in blacks.
  • Eviler Than Thou: Gets subjected to this by Mr. Sinister, only to turn it right back around on him. The quote over on her picture is what she says to him after overloading his machines.
  • Expendable Clone: The assumptions of Executive Meddling assumed that retconning Madelyne into this (as well as into other things) would make it easy to kill her off and that readers would permanently forget her. But as she had been given considerable Character Development even before this, and nowadays the increasing appearances of the trope of Clones Are People, Too, seem to have recently helped Pryor get Rescued from the Scrappy Heap.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Overlaps with Retcon to some degree, as Maddie was established during Inferno as succumbing to her darker side much earlier than anyone suspected, doing things like subconsciously manipulating the duel for leadership of the X-Men between Cyclops and Storms so Cyclops would lose and intentionally manipulating the news feed the Australian outback X-Men team was receiving on their counterparts X-Factor (who were getting some bad press at the time) to put the two teams at odds well before she snapped and became the Goblyn Queen.
    • Heel–Face Revolving Door: In X-Man she starts off as Nate's "guardian angel" (good) before abandoning him to study the dark arts under Selene (bad), under Selene's patronage she beats the snot out of Jerkass Trevor Fitzroy (good) but then has a major breakdown after Threnody drops one truth bomb too many on her, killing Thren and trashing Nate and Jean Grey in the bargain (bad). She forges an alliance with Sebastian Shaw to undermine Selene (grey area), only to walk away from the Club and rejoin Nate (good). After using her family ties and history of villainy to get in with Stryfe and betray him to the heroes it looked like Maddie had finally settled on Good Is Not Nice, but her storyline in the title abruptly ended when she was seemingly aged to a decrepit state after an ordnance strike from some Z-list villains.
  • Fashion Dissonance: When artist Marc Silvestri originally designed the Goblin Queen costume in 1988, thigh-high boots were associated with tramps and prostitutes, note  influencing the artist's design choice. In recent years, such boots have become associated with high-fashion and fashion-divas.
  • Femme Fatale: She gets around a bit and has no trouble winding men around her little finger - examples include Scott Summers, Alex Summers, Sebastian Shaw and (sort of) Nate. As she informed Jean in X-Man #25, "I've lived the darker side of us."
  • The Force Is Strong with This One: After she killed Threnody in X-Man she unleashed a kind of 'psychic shockwave' that was felt by everyone who had any kind of connection with her, even a non-telepath like Havok.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: Arguably suffers this upon learning that she's just a clone of Jean Grey.
  • Happily Married: Subverted. Originally she was introduced to give Cyclops a way to retire from superheroics, as Chris Claremont's original vision for the X-Men was for the older members to retire and the new guard to gradually take their place. But since comic books are the patron medium for Status Quo Is God obviously that couldn't happen.
    • And then eventually Marvel's Powers That Be decided that Status Quo Is Boring As Hell, so Cyclops and Jean Grey would also fall under the same subverted marriage trope.
  • Healing Hands: During her stint as "Anodyne" in the Asgardian Wars. She even fixed Rogue's absorption powers during this period, though it didn't take.
  • Heroes Want Redheads: Even evil, she managed to get the attention of more than a few good guys.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: She died alongside the X-Men in Dallas to save the world from the Adversary. Her turn to evil came later.
  • Irony: The purpose of Inferno was to make her into a slut, a bitch, and a subhuman freak just to exonerate her husband Cyclops and to kill her off because Jean Grey is status quo. But nearly 2 decades since coming back from being dead, Grey came to be seen as a tiresome Mary Sue, so has been killed off again herself for a long time. Pryor now turns up once in while, and some even seem to see her as the more interesting character.
    • Had Marvel just dropped her (and even her son) out of the picture without word or hype, she likely would've just faded into obscurity and been forgotten, just like most minor supporting characters in superhero comics.note  But by making her the center of such a massive send-off, and also then seemingly into a Martyred victim of both Executive Meddling and Marvel believing that Viewers Are Morons, these probably secured her a place as an established character and averted becoming one of the later Dork Age rejects.
  • Kick the Dog: Murdering Threnody in X-Man #25 and turning Jean Grey's elderly parents into demonic lackeys out of spite during Inferno.
  • Lady of Black Magic: She's sultry and usually demure, and has sorcery in addition to her formidable psychic powers.
  • Left Hanging: Despite being identified as the Red Queen by the protagonists in-story, by the fans and by this very page, her identity was never confirmed in-story and it is entirely possible that a future Retcon will reveal that character to be yet another interdimensional doppelganger, ala Queen Jean.
  • Male Gaze: Arguably even more-so than from the infamous costume top, Pryor's Goblin Queen costume included what might be politely called a "crotch thong".
  • Mama Bear: Subverted. At the start of Inferno, she's pulling out all the stops to get her baby back from Sinister... then it turns out she just wants to sacrifice him to turn New York City into Hell on Earth.
    • She only wanted to make Hell on Earth after Sinister revealed her origins.
    • However, upon meeting adult Cable, she has some soft spots to him and still recognizes him as her son. Just look. At one point, after explaining how she was created and, by proxy, how Nathan was born, she even offered him that We Can Rule Together, which he obviously refused. When she, Cyclops, and Cable were trapped in the astral plane thanks to Apocalypse, Cable asked to be reunited for the first time with his father and mother. Maddie granted his wish and they reunited at the Astral Plane, she offered them to stay like that so they can be together forever.
  • Meaningful Name: Mr. Sinister named her Madelyne Pryor due to her having a prior existence as Jean Grey. Evil Has a Bad Sense of Humor indeed.
  • Morality Pet: Nate Grey was this to her, her being his only friend. Indeed, she was, as shown by a Mysterio-induced hallucination, his best friend.
  • More Than Mind Control: During Inferno she convinced Havok to join her side as the 'Goblin Prince'. Initially this appears to be a straight up case of Mind Control, but when fighting his brother Alex reveals that he isn't being controlled, and instead chose to help Madelyne out of disgust at how Scott treated her.
  • Ms. Fanservice: After becoming the Goblin Queen, her tattered costume featured a very skimpy loincloth and an open middle that left only the tops of her breasts covered.
  • Mutant: Not originally one, but retconned into one after The Reveal that she was Jean's clone. Naturally, this meant she got all of Jean's Psychic Powers.
  • invokedMy Real Daddy: Since 2001 (and the cancellation of the X-Man and Mutant X comic titles), while Pryor continues to sporadically reappear in X-Men connected titles in the decades since, only stories written by her creator, Chris Claremont,note  feature Maddie as an appealing and even heroic character. Every and all other writers will only feature her as a bitch.
  • Parental Incest: With Nate Grey, alternate reality cloned son of Cyclops and Jean Grey, and technically Maddie's son's alternate reality counterpart. While he immediately backed off on that aspect of their relationship once he figured out their relationship, her... well, it's complicated, but she was something of a Clingy Jealous Girl, a classic Tsundere and the cover art of X-Man #41 had a giant Maddie holding Nate between two fingers and licking her lips. It really didn't help that the letters page had some readers enthusiastically shipping them.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: During the first Genosha story arc, which takes place between her original Deal with the Devil and Inferno itself, Madelyne is kidnapped by the Genoshans, who intend to physically and mentally enslave her through the Mutate Bonding Process. She uses her newfound, demonic powers to lash out and kill everyone in the room with her.
  • Personality Powers: Not as the Goblyn Queen, but in her original incarnation as just Madelyne Pryor she was granted powers from a magic Asgardian fountain. And because was a firmly good, well-adjusted and even selfless person under her original creator's pen, she manifested Healing Hands powers and became Anodyne, a healer so skilled she even cured Rogue of her Power Incontinence. This was probably the happiest period of Madelyne's life; sadly, it was Too Good to Last.
  • Pet the Dog: Her interactions with her son and Nate Grey, as noted above, can be considered as this.
  • Reality Warper: Implied to be a power she had during Inferno, which enabled her to transmogrify Grey's parents into demon servants. They and the whole transmogrified city then all changed back to normal only after Madelyne died (similar to the effects shown with Ace in the DCAU).
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: In X-Man #25, after liberating herself from her dependence on Nate Grey's psychic powers to continue existing.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: She gives some truly crushing Hannibal Lecture lines to Scott during her Red Queen phase.
    Red Queen: (in response to Scott offering to help her) Let you help me? Don't make me laugh, you child. You could never help me. Not as a hero, not as a man — and certainly not as a husband.
  • Replacement Goldfish: She was only this because the writers couldn't bring Jean outright back at the time.
    • In-Universe, Nate seemed to function as this to her for Cable (her son, whom he was an AU counterpart of), while she seemed to function as this to him for Jean (being the clone of his AU mother). Add in the UST in all of their interactions and you have one hell of a messed up relationship.
  • Retcon: Very late in the X-Man title and some time after Madelyne herself had disappeared, a new villain was introduced calling herself Queen Jean. This character claimed to have been the Madelyne Pryor Nate knew "from the very start", impersonating Pryor to get close to Nate. The story went back and forth on whether this was true or if Queen Jean was just a maniac screwing with Nate. By the time he finally killed her, fans and the story had both settled on an uneasy option B, but the identity shenanigans didn't end with Queen Jean's death. Between Queen Jean, the Red Queen and her own issues with the real Jean, it is safe to say this character has had one of the most complicated identity crisis in all of fiction.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Inferno is basically Maddie snapping and unleashing literal hell on Earth after enduring one hell of a brutal Trauma Conga Line.
  • Sanity Slippage: All through Inferno. Between being targeted for assassination by the Marauders, having her son kidnapped, being abandoned by her husband, being tricked into a Deal with the Devil, and finding out she was nothing but a clone created to be a brood mare, it's really a miracle she didn't snap sooner.
  • Send in the Clones: A story set shortly before the events of Avengers vs. X-Men had Mr. Sinister create six clones of her to control the Phoenix Force with. These clones had none of Maddie's personality, though, and were mostly just soulless husks following whatever orders Sinister gave them.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Named after the Steeleye Span folk singer Maddy Prior.
    • Whoever at Marvel came up with the "Goblin Queen" moniker,note  he/she/they must have been obsessed with a 1986 film which featured a fanserviced "Goblin King" who abducts babies.note 
    • In Uncanny X-Men #238, a vision of Pryor as a little girl in a field of daisies, followed by a nuclear explosion, might have been an apeing of an infamous 1964 presidential campaign commercial.
  • Spell My Name with a "Y": Is it "Goblin Queen" or "Goblyn Queen"? Even the comics used both more or less interchangeably.
  • Stripperiffic: Her Goblyn Queen outfit, and her costumes as a member of the Hellfire Club.
  • Stuffed in the Fridge: Subverted, as not for the trope's purpose of causing anguish for another character, but entirely just to die for the Jean Grey & Cyclops ship.
    • After Pryor was brought back in X-Man #5, issue #6 had a scene that focused on Nate Grey opening & closing a refrigerator while talking to her. This was happenstance, as the Women in Refrigerators website didn't come out until a few years afterward.
  • Supernaturally Young Parent: Thanks to her son's Time Travel, she looks much younger than her son.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Became this when the writers couldn't make her just Jean reborn.
  • Taking You with Me: She attempts to do this to Jean at the climax of Inferno, subjecting herself to psychic suicide in the hopes of dragging Jean down into death with her. It doesn't work, of course.
  • Tangled Family Tree: She married into what was formerly the Trope Namer.
  • Throw the Dog(s) a Bone: Fans never stop pestering Marvel about Pryor, so in order to placate them (i.e. to shut them up for once), for the past several years Marvel has featured her in some alternate-reality titles (e.g.: the Mutant X series; the X-Men: The End limited-series) in which Pryor pretty much came out ahead in the end. But those didn't satisfy the fans, so in 2014 Marvel finally gave in and brought her back in the "prime reality", and let her escape whole and healthy. Then she was included in the Secret Wars (2015) crossover event, especially in an Inferno redux tie-in storyline. That series ended with Maddie finally winning and getting to kill Mister Sinister for all he did to her. This version of Maddie also made the jump to the main marvel universe after Secret Wars.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Unlike many cases of Cloning Blues, Maddie was allowed to live on her own and believe her life was her own, which in many ways made the eventual reveal all the more cruel. Imagine finding out one day that the first 20-30 years of your life never happened because your memories of them, all those private experiences you thought were yours, actually belonged to and happened to someone else. As causes to Go Mad from the Revelation go, few are more horrifying on a personal human scale than hers.
  • Took a Level in Badass: She was pretty Badass right from the start, but over the years Maddie's taken a fair number of these.
  • Touched by Vorlons: While in gestation Madelyne was touched by the Phoenix Force, which had been wandering Earth after being rejected by Jean Grey. The Phoenix Force gave her the spark of life and Jean's nascent memories, though she didn't realize her memories were counterfeit until much, much later.
  • Tragic Villain: A particularly tragic case given how fast it happened in-story and how much Executive Meddling had to do with it out-of-story.
  • Transformation Horror: Likely a form of reality warping; one of her most potent abilities as the Goblyn Queen. She could transform people into demonic minions, though it apparently only worked on powerless or vulnerable humans. She transformed Jean Grey's parents into demonic lackeys, but failed to do the same to Colossus (in one what-if tale she did successfully demonize Wolverine, but he retained enough of his humanity to turn on her in the story's climax).
  • Trauma Conga Line: The sequence of events that eventually pushed her off the slippery slope.
  • Tsundere: Usually towards Nate.
  • Underboobs: Pioneered this daring choice in villainous fashion when she went bad in Inferno. It is very likely that telekinesis is the only thing keeping her inside that costume.
  • We Can Rule Together: Late in X-Man she got offered one of these by Stryfe, who was attempting to seize control of Latveria in Dr. Doom's absence. She accepted the offer (and got a portion of his power in exchange) but as it turned out she was just playing The Mole for Nate and Cable (not that she bothered to tell them, of course).
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: The Madelyne brought back by Arkea just walked off rather than defend her, and hasn't been seen since.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: Having her nascent mutant abilities awakened might have turned out all right for Maddie, had they not been awakened by demons and while she was in the process of being trampled by a Trauma Conga Line.
  • Woman Scorned: Partly due to What the Hell, Hero? and partly (well, mostly) due to Executive Meddling.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: She learned that she was a clone of Jean Grey and was abandoned by her husband, Scott Summers (who fell in love with her because of her obvious similarity to Jean, though neither knew she was a clone at the time, assuming it to just be mere coincidence that they looked exactly alike), when he reunited with Jean, after Jean returned from the dead. Then Maddie's infant son was kidnapped and she was left for dead. She has a daydream where she's ripped apart to build the woman her husband actually wants and then is offered revenge. Thinking that it's just a dream, she accepts, which, naturally, leaves her possessed by a demon and willing to sacrifice her baby (whom she finally has the power to find) to allow the demons of Limbo to take over the Earth.
  • Would Hurt a Child: She has her demons kidnap twelve babies to sacrifice in a ritual during Inferno, and when that fails she attempts to sacrifice her own son.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: The Red Queen of "the Sisterhood" story arc in 2009 is this to fans.


     The Marauders 

The Marauders
The original Marauders
The new Marauders
Debut: Uncanny X-Men #210 (1986)

A bunch of mercenary mutants who appear mainly as Mr. Sinister's Mooks. Led by the psychic entity known as Malice who is famous for having successively possessed Dazzler and more prominently Polaris, they can all be indefinitely cloned and many of them have been shown to have died but have come back to life (except Sabretooth initially, whose DNA was too complex to clone at first). They also bear the distinction of being what may just be the most thoroughly unsympathetic group the X-Men have dealt with; Arclight is the only core member who is even remotely sympathetic, and that's just because of a Freudian Excuse that hardly covers for all the awful things she's done.

By name: Scalphunter (an assholish Technopath), Arclight (a former servicewoman who causes shockwaves with her punch), Harpoon (a redheaded Inuit who channels energy in his spears), Scrambler (an energy vampire who negates people's powers), Blockbuster (The Brute of the group), Vertigo (a former Savage Land mutate who can cause dizziness and disorientation with her mind), Riptide (a sadist who uses Razor Wind to fight), Prism (a crystalline-bodied guy who can easily deflect energy beams) and Malice (a psychic entity who can possess people).

Sabretooth was originally part of the crew but left after Inferno. Gambit was also part of their team.

  • Aborted Arc: Some issues and tie-in novels released during the early nineties indicated the Marauders were just a band of mercenaries that could and did operate independently of Sinister.
  • Amazonian Beauty: Arclight is particularly toned and muscular for a lady, but still lithe and curvaceous enough to avoid being a Brawn Hilda.
  • Ax-Crazy: Apparently a requirement. Any outfit Sabretooth is not the craziest, evilest member of, you want to run away from.
  • Beard of Evil: Blockbuster.
  • The Big Guy: Scalphunter & Sabretooth.
  • Blade on a Stick: Harpoon.
  • Bloodbath Villain Origin: Here's a hint: there's a reason why their origin story is called the Mutant Massacre.
  • Breakout Villains: An oddly reliable source of secondary villains for the X-Men films. Arclight, Riptide and Sabretooth have all crossed over to the big screen, albeit in massively reimagined ways.
  • Blue and Orange Morality: Explored in one story where Nightcrawler goes after Scalphunter for his transgressions and easily defeats him, only to decide he cannot entirely blame the Scalphunter he has been hunting for the Mutant Massacre, since that Scalphunter died years ago and the one he's got on his hands now is a clone of a clone of the original. Overlaps with Cloning Blues when one takes the premise to its uncomfortable conclusion: that it can be applied to almost all the Marauders, since Sabretooth is the only one of the original bunch who has survived over the years.
  • The Brute: Blockbuster.
  • Cloning Blues: Most, if not all of them, have been killed over the years and replaced with clones, sometimes repeatedly.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Blockbuster and Harpoon deliver a particularly brutal round of this to Archangel just for shits and giggles.
  • Cool Shades: Arclight
  • Country Mouse: Harpoon's one character trait besides being a sociopath is this. His teammates would occasionally tease him about it between rounds of mutant murdering.
  • Cybernetics Eat Your Soul: Scalphunter
  • The Dandy: Scrambler
  • Dark Action Girl: Arclight especially.
  • Dark Chick: Vertigo. Her powers are more of a supportive nature than anything else. Also, she's a very weak hand-to-hand combatant.
  • Death Is Cheap:...for all of them.
  • The Dragon: Scalphunter was retconned into being Sinister's first Marauder, but it was Malice who served this role during Inferno.
  • Dumb Muscle: Blockbuster.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: Say what you will about Sinister, but he doesn't discriminate. His team consists of a Native American (Scalphunter), an Inuit (Harpoon), a Canadian (Sabretooth), a German (Blockbuster), a Korean (Scrambler), and an evolved neanderthal (Vertigo). All they're missing is an African American, and some fans speculate that Prism is one underneath that crystal body of his.
  • Everything's Better with Spinning: Riptide certainly thinks so.
  • Evil Redhead: Harpoon.
  • Eviler Than Thou: Sinister subjects Malice to this after she goes off the reservation and possesses Havok in X-Factor.
  • Evolutionary Levels: Vertigo was originally an Neanderthal from a Savage Land tribe known as the Swamp Men who was evolved into a human-like woman. Every now and then back in the day she would get de-evolved, only for Status Quo Is God to kick in and show up human again later.
  • Flat Character: The Marauders get varying degrees of fleshing out. Some, like Arclight and Scalphunter, have fleshed out backstories and personalities that raise them above rank-and-file Mook status. Others, like Blockbuster and Vertigo, suffer from being Out of Focus and so little is known about what makes them tick. The worst case is Prism, who exists purely to be a Running Gag and has no personality aside from being cocky despite being shattered in almost every appearance he makes.
  • For the Evulz: Primarily why Sabretooth joined the group.
  • Freudian Excuse: Arclight has PTSD from Vietnam, though most of her behavior can be summed up as just plain sadism.
  • Glass Cannon:
    • Riptide is probably the most destructive member of the team next to Arclight, but he's more or less screwed if someone can get past his barrage.
    • Prism is a literal Glass Cannon, being a man made of solid crystal who is usually broken in whatever fights he shows up for.
  • The Gunslinger: Scalphunter
  • Heel–Face Turn: Losing both arms below the elbow and nearly dying in his own spilled entrails turned out to be the incentive that Scrambler needed to turn his life around, and he even gets a Happily Ever After complete with a beloved wife and stepdaughter, his own business, and a nice chunk of land.
  • Jerkass: Scalphunter especially, although they all apply.
  • Kick the Dog: Their specialty. Just ask the Morlocks and Threnody. Special shout-out to Malice for taking the trope literally; during a plot to possess Havok, she murders an elderly tourist's poodle for barking at her. Evil Is Petty indeed.
  • Knight of Cerebus: Their debut was and still is one of the bloodiest X-Men stories ever told. From Scalphunter gunning down an elderly woman and her children in cold blood to Harpoon spearing Angel's wings to a wall (the damage was so severe they had to be amputated), the Marauders pushed the X-Men into darker territory than they'd ever visited before. This was even recognized in-story, with Gentle Giant Colossus snapping mentally and physically snapping Marauder Riptide's neck a moment later.
  • Lack of Empathy: All of them.
  • Laser-Guided Karma:
    • At the beginning of Inferno, the X-Men swore to make them pay for what they did to the Morlocks. With the exception of the possessed Polaris, all the Marauders got dispatched one by one during the arc.
    • Magneto tore through them in his 2014 solo series, exacting his own form of retribution two decades after the fact. While he dispassionately killed most of the team, Scalphunter got singled out for a more brutal punishment: he was left alive, with both his arms and both his legs forcibly amputated.
  • Lethal Joke Character: All of them. You wouldn't guess from their flamboyant attire and their devil-may-care attitudes that they're one of the deadliest villain groups the X-Men have ever faced.
  • Lighter and Softer: The Nasty Boys, a gang of delinquent mutants created to be Mr. Sinister's minions in the animated series as the Marauders themselves were much too dark for a children's cartoon. They had a short-lived stint in Peter David's run on X-Factor but were not used too often after that.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Arclight
  • London Gangster: The Further Adventures of Cyclops and Phoenix revealed the original Marauders to be a gang of these in the days of Victorian Britain.
  • Manipulative Bitch: Malice's shtick is usually to offer a better life to her target through selfishness and evil.
  • The Mirror Shows Your True Self: Malice is fond of revealing herself to her hosts through mirrors to play mind games with them.
  • Mook Horror Show: On the collective receiving end of one at the hands of Nate Grey in X-Man. Some years later Magneto subjects them to similar treatment in the pages of his own series.
  • Mooks: Frequently used for this after the revelation that Sinister could clone all of them at will.
  • Murder, Inc. A gang of mutant hitmen who specialize in killing other mutants.
  • Mutants: All of them, though their abilities of course vary.
    • Attack Reflector: Prism's main ability. His crystal body can absorb and redirect any energy attacks thrown his way.
    • Demonic Possession: Malice's primary ability. Like the Shadow King, she's a psychic entity that exists entirely on the astral plane and has to possess a victim in order to interact with the regular world.
    • Dishing Out Dirt: Arclight has some degree of this, in addition to limited Super Strength and Nigh-Invulnerability.
    • Healing Factor: Scalphunter has one, and it's strong enough to allow him to survive a firing squad.
    • Ki Manipulation: Harpoon, though he requires an object to channel them into, usually his signature weapons. He's kind of like an evil Gambit.
    • Mind Manipulation: Vertigo has an extremely limited degree of this, being able to induce sensations of intense dizziness and nausea in others.
    • Nigh-Invulnerability: Blockbuster and Arclight both have this, being the team's two powerhouses.
    • Power Incontinence: As you might have guessed from his name, Scrambler messes with other mutants' powers via touch. He can also use it to mess with machines, ala Shadowcat.
    • Powers via Possession: Subverted. Malice gets the powers, not the possessed person.
    • Razor Wind: Riptide's primary mutant power, which he generates by spinning himself in place like a top at extremely high speeds.
    • Super Strength: Blockbuster and Arclight again.
    • Technopath: Scalphunter is a technopath that suffers from Crippling Overspecialization, being able to use it only to put together guns.
  • My Greatest Failure: Gambit considers the Mutant Massacre perpetrated by them to be this, since he was the one who organized the team for Sinister.
  • Older Than They Look: Scalphunter is pushing somewhere in his 70s at this point, but you'd never know by looking at him.
  • One-Hit-Point Wonder: Prism is a rare non-video game version of this, being a character that is invulnerable to energy attacks but will shatter into a million pieces if a pebble so much as drops on him wrong. He's so fragile, in fact, that him getting killed is a kind of a Running Gag when it comes to the Marauders.
  • Personality Powers: Some of them manifest this and others don't. Blockbuster in particular is the cliched case of The Brute manifesting brutish powers, though Arclight (also brutish with brute powers), Scrambler (a Troll with the power to induce Power Incontinence) and Riptide (Ax-Crazy guy with super spinning) also qualify. On the other hand, Prism, Scalphunter and Vertigo all manifest powers that don't really fit their personalities (or in the case of Prism, there's not enough personality to go by).
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: Scalphunter, kind of. Aside from being a murderous sociopath in-story, the character's codename is also an uncomfortable semi-slur against Native Americans. Recent appearances and merchandise have referred to him by his real name, John Greycrow, instead.
  • Psycho for Hire: All of them!
  • Quirky Miniboss Squad: If an incredibly dark one.
  • Red Right Hand: Malice manifests a skull choker around the neck of anyone she possesses.
  • Red Shirt: Prism and Blockbuster to the group as a whole. They die the most often and have the least-interesting powers. Prism especially. His energy-channeling powers require the opponent to be using an energy-blasting power, and his body is made up of a material similar to glass. Pretty much every fight with him goes thusly: Cyclops shoots. His Eye Beams get deflected/returned/scattered. Someone hits him. He shatters into a gajillion tiny bits. It's not known whether he can pull himself together, or if every single appearance of him is a new clone after the last died two seconds into his first battle.
  • Sadist: Just about all of them, though Sabretooth, Scrambler, and Blockbuster are particularly bad in this regard.
  • Send in the Clones: What Sinister does whenever one of them dies. This has also resulted in at least one instance where an X-team stumbled upon one of Sinister's old hideouts where multiple clones were unleashed. More recently Sinister himself created multiple clones of assorted individuals whose DNA he has collected over the years to swell his ranks.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Arclight served in the Vietnam War and it's implied that whatever she saw and/or did there left a lasting impression on her, though she's done plenty of inexcusable things since.
  • Shout-Out: Scrambler's real name is Kim Il-sung. Yes, as in that Kim Il-sung.
  • Slave Mooks: It was revealed in X-Men #34 that all the cloned Marauders are these, as Sinister manufactures them with gene imprints that shut them down if they ever try to turn against him. Decades later Magneto takes advantage of this to turn them into his Mook army.
  • Sixth Ranger: Mystique and Exodus were both recruited to the team during Messiah Complex. Neither of them stick around for long, though.
  • Smug Snake: Scalphunter and Scrambler.
  • The Sociopath: Almost all of them, but Scalphunter especially qualifies.
  • Sociopathic Soldier: Arclight and Scalphunter are both former US military, fighting in the Vietnam War and World War II respectively. Perhaps not coincidentally, they are often depicted as lovers.
  • Super-Persistent Predator: Sabretooth.
  • Terrorists Without a Cause: Blockbuster is noted to have done some work for German terrorists before joining up with Sinister.
  • Two Girls to a Team: Arclight and Vertigo in the original group. Subverted with the new Marauders, which has numerous female villains such as Chimera and Lady Mastermind join up.
  • Unfriendly Fire: Scalphunter during World War II. He earned his name from "scalping" his superior officers and earned himself a ticket to the firing squad in the bargain. Unfortunately, his mutant abilities kept the trip from being one-way.
  • Villain Decay:
    • In their first appearances, the Marauders ripped through the X-Men, inflicting brutal injuries on several of their members. While they've always remained a serious threat, they've never quite reached that level of menace again, and in some cases (most notably during the X-Man series), they were even degraded to We Are "Team Cannon Fodder"-grade mooks for the heroes to mow down.
    • Sabretooth in particular was generally a much less fearsome presence as a Marauder than he normally tends to be, and was often the Marauder most singled out for punishment by Sinister when they'd fail an assignment.
  • Weapon of Choice: You'll never guess what Harpoon's are.
  • We Are "Team Cannon Fodder": Sometimes used this way.
  • Weaksauce Weakness:
    • Scrambler needs to touch people to negate their powers, which leaves him very vulnerable to long range attacks.
    • Prism's body is very brittle and all what is needed to get rid of him is to smash him against a wall.
  • What Measure Is a Mook?:
    • Having a kind of Joker Immunity thanks to Sinister's cloning banks means the Marauders get killed on a fairly regular basis. They're treated kind of like organic versions of the Sentinels because of this, with the heroes often ripping through them despite their various oaths to not kill.
    • Magneto also shamelessly exploits Sinister's genetic failsafes to turn them into his army of Slave Mooks, presumably to remind the readers that he is a Villain Protagonist.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Scalphunter had no qualms about killing Annalee's children.
  • Yellow Peril: Scrambler is a minor example. He's Korean, but dresses in a nice suit rather than any stereotypical Fu Manchu garb.
  • Zeerust: The Marauders debuted in the mid-80s, and... well, they look it.

    Mikhail Rasputin 

Mikhail Rasputin
Debut: Uncanny X-Men #285 (1992)

Isn't that what I have always done? Killed the people I cared for?

A powerful, dangerous and insane mutant Reality Warper, Mikhail Rasputin is a former Russian cosmonaut and the elder brother of X-Man Peter (Colossus) and Illyana Rasputin (Magik). Originally a Russian cosmonaut, the Soviet government faked a shuttle accident to send him on a secret mission to another dimension. There, the use of his powers accidentally caused the deaths of countless beings (including his wife), traumatizing him and leaving him with a deeply-rooted martyr complex. Eventually, Mikhail would set himself up as a Dark Messiah of desperate mutants (specifically, the descendants of the Morlocks), and eventually even inadvertently causing the death of (one version of) his little sister Illyana.

His various attempts to help the Morlocks and others tend to end violently and badly, which brings him into conflict with the X-Men, mostly out of a desire to use his vast mutant powers for good, but his insanity tends to cause this to backfire. He has a tense relationship with his siblings but generally cares for them.

  • Aloof Big Brother: Being a fair bit older than his siblings, they tend to see him this way.
  • Anti-Villain: Type II. He means well, every time. It's just an unfortunate combination of vast amounts of power and a deeply, deeply troubled mind that keep putting him on the wrong side of things.
  • Ax-Crazy: In his very worst moments, though it usually takes the manipulations of others to push him to this state, such as the 2005 Colossus: Bloodline limited series where Mr. Sinister talks him into going on a spree of familicide.
  • Cain and Abel: He is the older, insane brother of Colossus and Magik. Not on Mikhail's part, he lacks any true enmity towards them, but both of them have very legitimate reasons for their hatred of him.
  • Combo Platter Powers: His power is a kind of vaguely-defined Reality Warper ability combined with Teleporters and Transporters, and in the Age of Apocalypse at least is also used to transform himself physically much the way his brother does. Though they kicked in just in time to save his life from the botched Cosmonaut experiment, they also drove him into insanity.
    • Chrome Champion: Used only in the Age of Apocalypse, and could be related to Apocalypse amping up his powers in that continuity.
    • Reality Warper: Specifically stated at one point as being able to transmute matter from one state to another, as well as harness energy. He can use it to transform Iceman from his ice form back to normal, for instance... or to transform a luckless pizza guy into a tree.
    • Teleportation: His reality-warping powers allow him to open pocket dimensions and teleport himself there.
  • Dark Messiah: For the alternate dimension he was trapped in, later to the Morlocks and later still to Gene Nation.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: That time he teamed up with his brother to fight a Giant Space Flea from Nowhere.
  • Dimension Lord: When he ruled his dimension The Hill, he forced the young Morlocks to compete in order to become top soldiers by training them to fight to the death.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Shortly after being brought back to Earth, a pizza delivery guy runs into him on a bike. Mikhail's response? Turn the guy into a tree.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: A mix of this and Evil Overlord for the Morlocks in the parallel dimension known only as "the Hill."
  • Driven to Madness: He warped himself into another dimension when his powers first manifested and was adopted by that world's denizens as a hero, only to accidentally condemn most of them to death trying to save them. The trauma from that failure drives pretty much everything Mikhail does after.
  • Evil Mentor: For Marrow and the rest of Gene Nation, a generation of young Morlocks who became terrorists.
  • Hearing Voices: In his less sane moments. The voices tend to be victims of his past failures.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Willingly threw himself into the Dark Zone, a dimension from no escape in which time stands still and nothing can ever die... in order to protect his siblings from their murderous ancestor, the mad monk Rasputin. Yes, that Rasputin.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: It was eventually revealed that at some point during his dimension-hopping Mikhail had become infected by something that can only be described as this, and that said creature was in fact largely responsible for Mikhail's Sanity Slippage, having formed a kind of symbiotic bond with him. It was eventually destroyed by the combined efforts of the two Rasputin brothers, but unfortunately Status Quo Is God led to Mikhail going crazy again later.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Has a long rectangular scar across his right eye, giving him a sinister look. Morally, he could go either way in any given situation.
  • In the Hood: In his first appearance, due to trying to hide his identity in his self-imposed exile.
  • Insane Troll Logic: His second plan to bring back Illyana, sadly, amounted to this. His brother even points this out, only for Mikhail to just shrug it off.
  • Kick the Dog: Prone to doing this in his fits of insanity. The best example is in the Storm miniseries, where he literally kicks a Morlock boy off the hill he just climbed up purely For the Evulz. He's wearing a Slasher Smile too, just to gild the lily.
  • Laughing Mad: Probably the only heroic example in existence, and without a doubt Mikhail's Moment of Awesome:
    Narration: Mikhail has no way of knowing how long he stands on the edge of the void. The voice in his head whispers, begs, cajoles him with empty promises. When he finally steps forward, the voice screams with rage... and Mikhail laughs.
  • Non-Malicious Monster: Mikhail is not malevolent, he's just so out of touch with reality that the concepts of right and wrong usually get lost in translation with him.
  • Power Copying: Of an unusual sort. In addition to warping matter, he can also warp energy, meaning that if someone with energy-based powers uses them around him, he can take control of it. He once used Jean Grey's telekinesis to shove the X-Men out of the way so that he could "save" the Morlocks himself. (see Training from Hell)
  • Powers Do the Fighting: To the point that when Storm manages to get in close to him, she is able to totally immobilize him with no more than a small knife at his throat.
  • Put on a Bus to Hell: With the conclusion of the 2005 Colossus: Bloodline story, Mikhail was trapped, apparently for all eternity, in the Dark Zone where time stands still and nothing ever dies.
  • Renegade Russian: A mild example — he was a Russian cosmonaut and it's a safe bet the Kremlin doesn't know what he's been up to since being declared KIA.
  • Sadist Teacher: The Storm miniseries shows him as being this to the Morlocks he rules over.
  • Ship Tease: With Storm in his first appearance. He finds her isolated from her friends when they arrive in his dimension and welcomes her into his home, leading to this exchange:
    Storm: And what of you? You have yet to tell me your place in all of this. Who are you?
    Mikhail: (slowly smiling a guilty smile) Some say a legend. Some say a curse. It will be for you to decide which you believe.
    Storm: (with a knowing smirk) Then I shall bide my time, stranger... since in my day, I have been branded both myself!
  • The Social Darwinist: Becomes this in one of his more insane periods, after becoming leader of the Morlocks. He decides the only way to ensure their survival is to put them through Training from Hell, which resulted in most of them becoming as crazy as he is.
  • Stronger Sibling: Probably the strongest of the three Rasputin siblings in terms of mutant power, but also by far the least stable. Interestingly, he seems to fall in the middle morality-wise, somewhere between the incorruptible Colossus and thoroughly-corrupted Illyana.
  • Thou Shalt Not Kill: Even in his episodes of insanity, Mikhail usually has enough innate goodness that he can't bring himself to willingly take the life of another. The only time he has broken this rule is when he was driven to total madness by the combined efforts of Mister Sinister and his ancestor Rasputin (not that that excuses it, but it provides context).
  • Tragic Villain: His descent into madness and villainy started when he accidentally killed off a large part of the population of an alternate dimension, including his wife, when trying to close the portal that brought him there. He later had to try again because the portal was going to destroy the dimension.
  • Training from Hell: Mikhail saved the last survivors of the Morlocks from their tunnels as they were flooding... by teleporting them to an alternate dimension that was really a giant mountain known only as "the Hill." There, he left them at the bottom, making them climb through Acid Rain, fighting both native monsters (and each other) for the few scarce resources the dimension had, with the objective being, ostensibly, to get up the Hill to where he was, as an exercise in Social Darwinism (the idea was to cull the weak and weak-willed so that the Morlocks as a people could better survive and endure). It wasn't until Storm arrived that he started spotting the flaws in this plan.
  • Unwitting Pawn: The Storm miniseries teased him as being this to the Dark Beast, but it never went anywhere.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Mostly, he just wants to put his powers to some kind of constructive use, partly to make up for all the damage they have caused in the past. Unfortunately, being Ax-Crazy makes him misinterpret what "constructive use" means.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: His high-order powers are part of his madness, but his traumatic history and an insanity-inducing Giant Space Flea from Nowhere are also to blame.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: In his backstory; see Driven to Madness above.
  • Year Inside, Hour Outside: Time passes differently in 'The Hill', the alternate dimension he sets himsellf up as a Dimension Lord over. The exact conversion is somewhat vague thanks to Comic-Book Time but it was long enough that Morlock babies that crossed over with him had enough time to grow into teenagers, despite not even a year passing on Earth.

    Mr. Sinister 

Mister Sinister

Nathaniel Essex
You are power incarnate, It's true. Crude, uncontained power. But I, child of the atom... I am control.
Debut: Uncanny X-Men #221 (1987)

Dr. Nathaniel Essex was a respected Victorian scientist and a contemporary of Charles Darwin, who read Darwin's theories with interest but thought they did not go far enough. Uncovering evidence for the existence of mutants and viewing them as the next stage in human evolution, Essex put a radical kind of eugenics forward to the scientific community, arguing that children from the families of these unique bloodlines he was discovering (i.e. the children or descendants of mutants) should be taken and raised as lab rats in order to direct the human race more clearly and quickly to its future. Unsurprisingly, the scientific community were horrified and turned against him, and on her deathbed even his wife denounced him as "Sinister" after she discovered he had dug up their dead son for his increasingly twisted research.

But Essex found a patron receptive to his ideas, the ancient mutant Apocalypse, who transformed him into an immortal and inhuman creature who takes the name his dead wife gave him- Sinister. Though he eventually turned against his master for his genocidal creeds, Sinister continued his unethical experiments throughout the ages and has cast a dark shadow over the lives of many young mutants and innocents. Magneto knew him as "Nosferatu", a Nazi Mad Scientist who took blood samples from children in the camps in exchange for sweets; Juggernaut, Prof. X and Sebastian Shaw were amongst a group of children experimented on as part of a long-term Grand Theft Me plot in the unlikely event of his death, and Cyclops was raised in one of his orphanages, after he recognized the potential for the Summers' bloodline as part of this he created a clone of Jean Grey called Madelyne Jennifer Pryor. Sinister was behind the massacre of the Morlocks and a host of other atrocities over the years, but with centuries of study backing him up he is likely the foremost expert in mutant genetics in the world. The combination makes him one of the X-Men's most intelligent, despicable and dangerous enemies.

He appears as a Boss in X-Men: GamesMaster's Legacy, is The Man Behind the Man in X-Men: The Ravages of Apocalypse, and is the Final Boss of the 2013 Deadpool game.

  • Aborted Arc: It was once strongly implied that Sinister had contracted the Legacy Virus. Nothing ever came of this.
  • Achilles' Heel: Subverted, as X-Men were led to believe that his only weakness was Cyclops's optic blast (and indeed, in the '90s cartoon it really was) which seemingly destroyed him in their first battle. It was later revealed Sinister was just Faking the Dead and Cyclops's optic blast was no more effective on him than anything else. When he first made his return, it was pointed out that Cyclops's optic blasts have never blown things up before, just pulverized them, so they really should have suspected.
  • Arch-Enemy: To the Summers family in general and Cyclops in particular.
  • Bad Boss: He is a brutal boss to his Marauders, sometimes killing them with his own hands for their failure because he knows he can just crank out clones of them anyway.
  • Badass Bookworm: An evil version, but he is probably the world's foremost expert on mutant genetics. Let's put it this way: the High Evolutionary is a character with cosmic power who has gone toe-to-toe with Galactus and evolved an entire world's worth of animals into an advanced society, and he's behind the curve when it comes to Sinister. Hell, Sinister actually went to the trouble of masquerading as an Oxford professor for years just to get him started!
  • Badass Cape: Your mileage will probably vary, though.
  • Big Bad: One of the X-Men's main recurrent adversaries, and the architect of much of their misery.
    • Could be considered the closest thing to one in the 90s X-Men cartoon as he served as the direct Big Bad of season 2, and was the most reoccurring villain in the series by a noticeable margin, though his last few had him Demoted to Dragon for Apocalypse.
    • This asshole's also the Big Bad of my video game... And the Silver Surfer's for some reason. I dunno either, that game was weird.
  • The Chessmaster: Sinister always has elements of this, but bonus points go to his AvX incarnation who constantly refers to his battle with Cyclops and the Phoenix Five in chess terms, and after being beaten reappears before Scott in disguise just to invite him to "come out and play" again.
  • Chunky Salsa Rule: Averted. His shapeshifting and healing powers allowed him to survive getting gibbed.
  • Clone by Conversion: His "Sinister London" is a town converted into hive mind connected clones. Even animals such as horses are made genetically identical to him.
  • Crazy-Prepared: He has plans within plans within plans. He has multiple schemes to cheat death (despite being an immortal and one of the most difficult villains to kill even considering that) that were set up in the 1950's, and many possibly earlier.
  • Deal with the Devil: Has been on both ends of this relationship, though in most (and often either) cases The Devil is him.
  • Diabolical Mastermind: One of, if not the, foremost of schemers in the X-Men's corner of the Marvel U.
  • The Dragon: To Apocalypse, though he quickly turned against him and went solo. While they are both big believers in survival of the fittest and "improving" human evolution, Sinister found Apocalypse's methods appallingly unscientific.
    • Dragon Ascendant: His ultimate goal, which he manages to pull off in various alternate continuities and What If? stories.
    • Dragon with an Agenda: Sometimes overlaps with The Starscream, but Sinister is usually more interested in keeping the world safe from Apocalypse (so he can continue playing with it as his petri dish, of course) than he is in usurping his former master's power. Not that he'll pass on a chance to have his cake and eat it too, given the chance...
  • The Dreaded: His role in the Mutant Massacre and subsequent manipulations has made him one of the most feared names in the mutant community. He is also one of the last opponents the X-Men ever want to tangle with, since they know from painful experience how much trouble he brings.
  • Egopolis: Created an entire city, called "Sinister London", prior to Avengers vs. X-Men.
  • Enigmatic Minion: Particularly in earlier appearances, before his real name and history were revealed.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Depending on the Writer. His choice to betray Apocalypse was this with a side of Pragmatic Villainy, but he also betrays Apocalypse to Cyclops and Jean Grey specifically after Jean implores him to "think of the children" (the loss of his son Adam was a major factor in his Sanity Slippage, and during this time he was depicted with a distinct shade of Wouldn't Hurt a Child). He also condemns Stryfe and his Legacy Virus (biological warfare in particular seems to be a line in the sand for Essex) and reveals everything he knows about both to Cyclops of his own volition. Much of this Character Development was forgotten after The '90s and downright contradicted in Weapon X which used him as a generic Mengele-esque Mad Scientist instead (a depiction which would go on to become the predominating characterization for him).
  • Evil Albino: Mr. Sinister has been portrayed as an albino in at least some of his incarnations (his physical appearance having changed greatly over the ages). In particular, during World War Two, when he was worked for the Nazis as a geneticist in a concentration camp and was known by the nickname "Nosferatu" because of his habit of collecting blood from children.
  • Evil Genius: Quite possibly the most evil and the most ingenious villain the X-Men have ever had to face.
  • Evil Is Bigger: His given height is 6'5, but he's usually drawn much larger than that, utterly towering over the likes of Sabretooth.
  • Evil Mentor: X-Men vol. 2 #99 revealed that Sinister was actually this to the young Herbert Edgar Wyndham (the future High Evolutionary), masquerading as a "Professor Essex" in Oxford and being the only professor on the campus who supported and encouraged Wyndham's more radical theories. Decades later he recycled this identity to use the Evolutionary as a dupe in his Evil Plan of the week.
  • Evilutionary Biologist: Implied to be directly responsible for the abundance of mutants in the modern world due to the strange, forbidden experiments he conducted in his day.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Acts all suave and gentleman-like, but really is nothing more than a cold, calculating Sociopath with a Supremacy-Complex.
  • Flanderization: While Sinister was an evil scientist from day one, the politically-incorrect Nazi Nobleman interpretation of him was nowhere on his creator Claremont's map. That was added some 15 years later, after a decade of stories featuring him as some variant of He Who Fights Monsters.
  • For Science!: His usual motive. He has worked with the High Evolutionary on occasion, and in fact back in the day he was the Evolutionary's inspiration, though both have learned not to trust each other as far as they can throw.
  • Gender Bender: Happened after Messiah Complex, which saw him Back from the Dead in a new female body quickly dubbed 'Miss Sinister'. This didn't last too long, however.
  • Grand Theft Me: After the death of his original body, he attempts to pull this on Xavier, before ending up in the body of Claudine Renko. Renko in turn attempts to do this to X-23 in hopes of taking advantage of her Healing Factor to prevent Sinister from seizing control of her body and being reborn, but Sinister pulls a fast one and takes control of X-23 first. Laura then kicks him out! And Sinister has to settle for a spare Alice clone when Renko is critically wounded in the fight.
    X-23: Get out of my head!
  • Healing Factor: His signature power; far more advanced than Wolverine's except on the latter's best days. Think the T-1000 cranked Up to Eleven. Sinister's latest body does not have this ability, but he makes up for it by now being a Hive Mind
  • Hijacking Cthulhu: He managed to hack the DNA of the Dreaming Celestial in San Francisco to siphon enough power to create his Sinister London.
  • The Virus: Can transplant his consciousness and physical characteristics into the bodies of others or even multiple bodies at a time. He apparently learned how to do this by studying and reverse-engineering the biology of the Phalanx.
  • He-Man Woman Hater: He populated "Sinister London" entirely with male clones of himself. He claimed he had nothing against women, but added that he had nothing for them, either.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: Believes in stopping Apocalypse by any means necessary. In order to do so, he's crossed the Moral Event Horizon more times than most villains could ever dream of.
  • Hope Spot: He once took on the identity of a seemingly kindly scientist working for Weapon X, offering mutants victimized by the program the opportunity to escape. Those who did were promptly subjected to even worse experimentation.
  • Humanoid Abomination: What Apocalypse turned him into, though maybe it's better said that he only completed the process and Essex was inhuman in all but fact by that point.
  • Human Resources: Fond of using this, particularly in AvX where he has an entire bestiary stocked with clones of both heroes and villains to use against the heroes. And he doesn't just stop with human resources; in one particularly hilarious scene, Phoenix Emma Frost is complaining about fighting a "field of weaponized wheat", right before:
    Herd of Cows: (with glowing red eyes) KILL.
  • Kill 'Em All: Attempted on the Morlocks with the aptly-titled Mutant Massacre. Nearly succeeded.
  • Large and in Charge: Sinister is huge, outright towering over his Marauders and most heroes.
  • Mad Scientist: He emphasizes the science over the madness at least, though being more competent doesn't necessarily make him any less evil.
  • The Man Behind the Man: The man behind the Marauders, the Nasty Boys, the Goblyn Queen, Xraven and even the High Evolutionary.
  • Manipulative Bastard: One of Marvel's best offerings to this trope.
  • Meaningful Rename: When Apocalypse grants him immortality, he tells Essex to choose a new name for himself. Essex chooses 'Sinister' as it was the last word his wife Rebecca spoke to him.
  • Morally Ambiguous Doctorate: A curious example. Despite having a better claim to the title of doctor than maybe 90% of Marvel villains who claim it, Essex oddly chooses not to, identifying himself as Mister Sinister even to other doctor characters.
  • My Species Doth Protest Too Much: One of the first (ex-) human X-Men villains who was neither a stereotypical Card-Carrying Villain nor an anti-human bigot eradicate the mutant race, but who instead actually embraced the idea of Homo Superior and worked towards "helping" the mutant cause in his own twisted way. And ironically, he's turned out worse than nearly all of them.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Sinister's exceptionally unsubtle name has an interesting history behind it, relating to a rejected backstory for the character. He was originally going to be a young child mutant who could psychically project an adult body, whose Obviously Evil name and appearance were due to the fact that he's a little boy's idea of what a cool supervillain is. In-Universe, the name is a reference to his wife Rebecca's last words. Still doesn't explain why he chooses to eschew his medical title, though.
  • Nazi Nobleman: Not originally one, this element of his character was added in the pages of 2002's Weapon X, which featured him as the Mengele figure in the tasteless mutant concentration camp "Neverland". Since that story he's been written as having increasingly closer ties to the Nazis, from being retconned into collaborating with them under the alias "Nosferatu" to creating the Namor clone N2 for them.
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: At last count, he's an immortal, invulnerable shapeshifter with Telepathy (mostly of the Mind Control or body-snatching variety), telekinesis, force fields, Super Strength, and energy blasts of some kind. And he rarely ever engages in any kind of physical fighting. Seems to have lost most of these powers in his latest incarnation but also gained some new ones and further makes up for it by being more Crazy-Prepared than ever.
  • Nice Job Breaking It Anti-Villain: A very rare case of this character being Out-Gambitted — In the X-Cutioner's Song Stryfe tempts him into an alliance by promising him a canister from his future with 2,000 years worth of Summers genetic code. The canister actually ends up containing the Legacy Virus, with Sinister's assistant becoming its very first victim.
  • Noble Demon: He's often a helpful presence when it suits his own ends. Not that he's to be trusted once he no longer has any use for you... But he's a villain who understands that if somebody else takes over the world before him (or destroys it), he loses.
  • Non-Action Big Bad: Played with, as Sinister usually leaves the fighting to his underlings but is perfectly capable of throwing down with the best. As he quickly reminds Big Bad Wannabe John Sublime:
    Sinister: While I really do prefer not to resort to violence... that doesn't mean I'm not good at it.
  • Opposite-Sex Clone: Miss Sinister, a failed attempt in his early experiments of virally converting others into a copy of himself. Managed to break free from the process completing itself and retain enough identity to have her own ambitions.
  • Pet the Dog: During his time as a Nazi, he would offer candy to the imprisoned children in exchange for blood samples
  • Playing with Syringes: Often drawn with comically oversized ones to emphasize his menace.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: He varies on this score, sometimes being depicted as entirely uninterested in differences of race and sex, while at others being depicted as... well. What one might expect of a Jerkass from the Victorian era. Most recently, he's been depicted as a racist (refers to Storm as "colonial pet") and a sexist (sees Emma as Scott's sperm receptacle)
  • Power Copying: He has a wide range of powers (see below); he got them from copying or stealing them from mutants he captured.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: The reason he betrayed Apocalypse in the first place was the fact that the latter wanted him to engineer a genocidal plague to unleash upon humanity. Sinister didn't really do this out of any sense of morality however; he just considered it ignorant and bad science (though it is hinted that Jean imploring him to think of the children, like his own recently deceased son Adam, influenced this).
  • The Psycho Rangers: Sinister's Six, six X-Men clones he created to fight the All-New X-Men.
  • Pure Is Not Good: As a child, he thought the wealthy part of Victorian-era London he grew up in was Heaven and was fascinated by all the scientific advances being made, as well as how clean everything was. He became obsessed with purity thanks to this over time, culminating in his insane eugenical theories.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Or rather, about 150 or so.
  • Removed Achilles' Heel: In both the comic and animated series, he was initially set up as having a weakness to Cyclops's optic blasts. In the comics this was eventually revealed as a deliberate deception on his part, while in the animated series it was genuine but when he came back in '"Reunion'' he was significantly less vulnerable to them.
  • Sinister Surveillance: Appearances by him more often than not consist entirely of a cutaway to him sitting in his lab spying on the heroes. How he is seemingly able to observe any of the X-Men anywhere at any time has yet to be explained.
  • Slave Brand: Canonically, the red diamond on his head is "the mark of Apocalypse", branding Sinister as his forevermore. And yes, you did read that right. One of the most distinctive features of one of the most distinctive villains in the X-Men's rogues gallery is nothing more than a glorified tramp stamp.
  • Stalker with a Test Tube: A major Trope Codifier.
  • Sympathy for the Hero: In X-Men #23 he has a strange conversation with Cyclops, mostly famous for the infamous "third Summers brother" hint, but also unique for Sinister exhibiting a rare sympathy for the X-Men. He condemns Stryfe and his Legacy Virus outright, saying that death at the hands of a madman like him is "the worst kind of death for people like you (Scott), who strive so hard to fight for the dream."
  • Tragic Villain: The Further Adventures of Cyclops and Phoenix portrays Nathaniel Essex as a brilliant Seeker Archetype who is undergoing some steep Sanity Slippage after the death of his infant son Adam. Even Scott and Jean, the two people with the most cause to hate Sinister, can't help but pity Essex and hope against hope his fate can be changed. It can't.
  • Unwanted Revival: At one point while Colossus is dead Sinister goes to the X-Men and offers to give their teammate a second chance via his cloning technology. Quite understandably, they decline the offer. And then Colossus goes and comes back from the dead anyway.
  • Voodoo Shark: Sinister's first full use as a villain, in which he was The Man Behind the Man and explanation for the Retcon that Madelyne Pryor was a clone, was definitely this, and it has long been scorned in fandom for the twin crimes of derailing the Madelyne Pryor character and making Sinister himself, supposedly a genius geneticist of the highest caliber, look like a bit of an idiot. The story establishes he acquired Scott and Jean's DNA early and that his goal is to create their child (who he has calculated will be an extremely powerful mutant)... so why didn't he just use their DNA to create their child himself? He actually does just this in the Age of Apocalypse and the result, X-Man, is genetically identical to the child born to Maddie and Scott, which just makes the original plot even more preposterous. (While Mads was brain-dead when he grew her—he had a Jean-Grey-shaped vegetable until a piece of the Phoenix came along—and his ability to create fully-functional clones came later, theoretically he would have only needed her uterus to work, since presumably that wouldn't have the same problems as his cloning process.)
  • Weaksauce Weakness: In Messiah Complex he is killed by physical contact with Rogue. The writers apparently forgot his tussles with her in the 80s, where he was not only immune to her power but even briefly able to take control of her body after she made the mistake of trying to touch him.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Another case of Depending on the Writer, and most prevalent during the 90s where most of what he was up to was in the name of opposing Apocalypse. His actions during 2007's Messiah Complex storyline also have shades of this, as he was working (in his usual Stalker with a Test Tube way) towards the goal of reviving the mutant race after the Scarlet Witch magically sterilized them en masse.
  • Wouldn't Hurt a Child/Would Hurt a Child: Zigzags: during the 80s Sinister stalks kid Cyclops, but doesn't harm him and even develops the glasses that allow him to control his power; during the 90s he was firmly in Wouldn't Hurt a Child mode, and from the 2000s since he's been in unrepentant Would Hurt a Child mode (though he does make an exception for baby Hope).
  • Xanatos Gambit: With a side order of Xanatos Speed Chess and Batman Gambit and in some cases Cloning Gambit.


AKA: Mojo the First, Mojo Lifebringer
Debut: Longshot #3 (1985)

When people hear Mojo... they think fun! Good, clean, extravagantly violent fun!

A repulsive alien entity from "Mojoworld", which can only be described as resembling a grotesquely-bloated, green-skinned human upper torso, with cybernetic cables coming out of the back of his head and mechanical struts holding his eyes and mouth. Gets around by sitting in a spider-legged mechanical platform with a tail-lke blaster on its back. An incredibly powerful sorcerer-creature, Mojo is part of an alien race absolutely obsessed with television; by becoming the greatest producer of television shows in his dimension, Mojo has become their lord by dominating the airwaves. His recurring obsession is with the heroes of the Marvel Universe, primarily the X-Men, as he sees them as being the "next big hit" and so he is forever either trying to force them to perform for his shows or else simply attacking them in the name of entertainment. Of course, he sees the potential popularity of other heroes and has gone after the likes of Spider-Man, the Human Torch, and even Rocket Raccoon.

He appears as a Boss in the 1993 X-Men game and is the Big Bad of the 1996 Game Gear game X-Men: Mojo World.

  • Actually a Doombot: After Rocket Raccoon blows his head off, Mojo is quickly revealed to be a robotic copy built by Major Domo while the real Mojo was on vacation.
  • Adorkable: In Mojo: Black, we see an exiled Mojo crushing on a human woman called Ann, and striking up a sincere friendship with Glob, and he is so uncharacteristically shy and visibly out of his depth that it's surprisingly endearing.
  • Aliens Steal Cable: Inadvertently. The reason why the Spineless Ones are obsessed with TV (and why their genetically-engineered Servant Race are Human Aliens) is that they receive TV transmissions from Earth in their dreams.
  • Bad Boss: Oh, yes. Assuming Mojo doesn't kill or mutilate or torture or goodness-knows-what-else whenever it suits him, he also just generally treats everyone under him like crap. They don't even get dental. Gingivitis is a serious problem on Mojoworld.
  • Bad Future: The Citadel at the End of Time, which appeared in a two-part story in the pages of the first Wolverine run and was then adapted for the 1993 X-Men game as "Mojo's Future Crunch". As the name implies, it's a planetoid controlled by Mojo in the far, far future - an hour before the end of time itself, to be precise. Mojo warped himself there using his Reality Warper powers and planned to remake all reality in his image, but the very unlikely Power Trio of Wolverine, Mystique and Spiral were able to stop him.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Twice in Mojo: Black; first when he saves a little girl from being hit by a car, and then again when he rescues Ann from the Half-Sentient when Major Domo mistakenly gives the girl to the mindless monster, thinking Mojo has an evil plan in mind when in fact he didn't.
  • Beware My Stinger Tail: Mojo's primary weapon is the scorpion-like tail on his Spider Tank walking-platform, which is equipped with an energy blaster.
  • Cloning Blues: He briefly had a clone in The '90s, the imaginatively-named Mojo II: The Sequel. Strangely, Mojo II looks almost nothing like the original; he's a handsome, long-haired, muscular figure with elegant cybernetic limbs fused into his body, giving him the appearance of a biped.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: If a particularly Ax-Crazy one. Later appearances after his first tended to emphasize his craziness over his cloudcuckoolandry.
  • Commonality Connection: In Mojo: Black, Mojo and Glob Herman bond over not being conventionally (or unconventionally) attractive.
  • Cool Airship: Used one of these to get around in his first appearance. It was adapted into the animated series.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Perhaps the most bizarre example ever. On Mojoworld, TV is life, and Mojo has the remote. So if you don't amuse him, you're cancelled. Also, he gets money selling merchandising of his captives, telling Morph of the Exiles that his stuff sells so well Mojo could buy a whole continent... if he didn't own them all already.
  • Deadly Game: Basically the whole premise of his character.
  • Dimension Lord: Mojo has acquired such power thanks to his skill at appealing to the residents of Mojoworld that he has taken over the entire dimension, even renaming it after himself. At the end of the Mojoworld mini-event, in X-Men: Blue #15, he is permanently stranded on Earth. His issue of X-Men: Black takes place several weeks afterwards.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: In Mojo: Black, he is outraged when a racist old man insults Glob as the two are strolling around the block together, just because Glob is a mutant. He also saves a girl from being hit by a careless driver, and scolds him on texting whilst driving.
  • Fat Bastard: Mojo is a horrifically swollen, bloated-looking creature.
  • Flanderization: In the original Longshot mini-series, he made movies with his slaves, but it was not the all-consuming obsession for him it would later become in X-Men.
  • Gods Need Prayer Badly: As do villainous Starfish Aliens, apparently. Not only are the strength of his magic powers tied directly to the ratings of his shows, he grows weaker if cut off from his followers. This is why he so rarely ventures outside of his realm and instead favors kidnapping heroes into Mojoworld instead.
  • Good Feels Good: In Mojo: Black, after he impulsively saves a little girl from being run-over, Mojo is visibly touched when she thanks him by kissing him on the cheek and complimenting him on his spider-legged walker. At the issue's end, he also puts his plan on hold so he can go and hang out with Glob and Ann instead.
  • Handicapped Badass: Not due to injury, it being a part of his race's biology, but Mojo has no legs and has to get around on a Spider Tank platform. You'd expect him to get knocked out of it all the time, but as of 2015 he never has.
  • The Hedonist: Not to the level of Hellfire Club alumni, but all one has to do is look at him to know Mojo doesn't miss too many meals.
    • Dialogue in one issue of Rocket Rackoon & Groot remarks that Mojo has entered rehab for some sort of addiction(s), implying that gluttony may not the only thing Mojo finds pleasure in.
  • The Hypnotoad: One of the perks of his Reality Warper powers. Upon arriving in our dimension, one of the first things he did was hypnotize a group of churchgoers to convert their church into a tower glorifying him.
  • Interspecies Romance: In Mojo: Black, he develops a crush on a human woman named Ann, and scores a date with her after saving her from the Half-Sentient and asking her out. She accepts because, as a New Yorker, he's not even the weirdest guy to ask her out that month.
  • Ironic Nickname: In his first appearance he liked calling himself 'Mojo Lifebringer', which couldn't be further from the truth.
  • Large Ham: As one of the most comical of the X-villains, this is pretty much inevitable.
  • Laughably Evil: Because his goals are basically to make TV shows out of the X-Men, and the fact he's essentially a mad TV producer, Mojo can come off as quite amusing. He is, however, an utter psychopath, and willingly engages in the vilest of behavior — like killing off his actors for real just to make their death scenes in his shows seem more realistic.
  • Liquid Assets: He was shown to have this ability in the animated series, draining Spiral's youth as a punishment and then restoring it moments later.
  • Love at First Punch: A variant; in Mojo: Black, he reveals he fell for Ann when she bumped into him and immediately chewed him out as a "mewling, simpering dolt" before storming off.
  • Love Redeems: His attraction to Ann in Mojo: Black. Though, in Rogue's opinion, falling in love hasn't actually made Mojo that much of a better person, as he's still forcing people to act in horrible shows (all of which are now twisted love stories) for the entertainment of Mojoworld.
  • Odd Friendship: With Glob in Mojo: Black after Glob sees him trying and failing to ask out Ann.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • He let Spider-Man and the Jean Grey School's Special Class go after they reluctantly saved him from falling to his death. This also resulted in some rare positive Laser-Guided Karma for a villain, as it was all caught on camera and the sight of Mojo being nice was such a huge shock to the viewing audience that it caused a big ratings spike and a surge in his popularity as the other Spineless Ones now saw him in a whole new, sympathetic light (which Mojo took full advantage of, even allowing himself to be arrested and jailed for his crimes as a Ratings Stunt).
    • In Mojo: Black, when Mojo spots a little girl chase her cat into traffic and a driver about to hit her because he's distracted by texting as he drives, Mojo leaps in and forcibly stops the car before it can hit the girl and her cat. He has no reason to do this, nobody asks him to do it, he just impulsively leaps to her rescue, and is visibly shocked when he comes down from scolding the driver and realizes what he did.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Heavily implied in the Longshot mini where he was first introduced:
    Spiral: You act completely psychotic but I know you're really thirty moves ahead of everyone.
  • Poisonous Person: His very presence wilts plants and sickens humans. His touch is enough to kill small animals instantly.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Mojo was upset about the events of M-Day, because mutants going extinct would hurt his ratings.
  • Progressively Prettier: Mojo's face is much less hideous-looking than usual in his appearances in X-Men: Blue and Xmen Black; his eyes aren't forcibly held open into their traditional bulging, lunatic stare, and his lips similarly aren't permanently pulled back in a rictus grin (although he does still make some rather hideous gaping-cheeked snarled at some points). His features visibly soften and get more handsome in X-Men: Black after he thwarts his own evil scheme to save Ann and Glob.
  • Puzzle Boss: Both Mojo himself and the level you fight him in, in the infamous "Mojo's Future Crunch" level in X-Men (1993). Mojo himself is completely impervious to attacks, laughing off any hit you throw at him, even Cyclops's optic blasts or Wolverine's claws. The trick to beating him is to hit him anyway so he laughs, then while he's laughing jump behind him and hit the machine carrying him. But the puzzle doesn't end after you beat him — when you get to the end, you're told to "reset the computer" but given no instruction as to how. You actually have to reset your actual physical Sega Genesis, and then only a "soft reset". To put it lightly, Mojo could well be the face of Guide Dang It!.
  • Reality Warper: Mojo has extreme magical powers that allow him to do just about anything he wants... so long as he has the energy from his ratings to do so.
  • Refuge in Audacity: Probably the reason Mojo's managed to stick around as long as he has. How many other villains can you think of that pick their nose hairs and wave them around in front of the heroes as a taunt?
  • Rogues-Gallery Transplant: The first Longshot mini actually seemed to be setting him up as a villain for Doctor Strange, who he never fought again.
    • Averted when Rocket & Groot were hijacked to Mojoworld in their book. His majordomo was the responsible party, while Mojo himself was in rehab.
  • Shoulder Cannon: During the Mojoworld mini-event in X-Men: Blue, he upgrades his arsenal with a pair of psy-cannons cybernetically mounted onto his shoulders.
  • Starfish Aliens: The Spineless Ones are basically pseudo-anthropomorphic slugs.
  • Status Quo Is God: Is overthrown on a near-regular basis, only to inevitably return to power in the next story. Being a Dimension Lord makes it at least somewhat plausible.
  • Take That!: As originally written, Mojo and the Mojoverse existed to paint the fourth wall and lampshade Chris Claremont's disagreements with his higher-ups. A particularly telling example is in an Excalibur annual, where the X-Babies have to take refuge in "The House of Stan and Jack"... a tiny shack buried deep under a mountain of buildings with the names of DC and Marvel's latest (at the time) Crisis Crossovers. He later lost this element and became just another ranting, goofy C-List villain, presumably when the higher-ups caught on to what Claremont was doing.
  • Uniqueness Value: Boasts at one point that both he himself and his dimension are unique in the multiverse and that no Alternate Universe versions of either exist. The veracity of this boast is up for debate, as Ultimate X-Men has a counterpart of him named Mojo Adams, but that version is an ordinary human and may not count by the metric Mojo uses.
  • Villainous Glutton: Mojo is disgusting in many, many ways, not the least of which being how grossly fat he is.
  • Walking Wasteland: An extreme example. Not only do plants wither and animals die wherever he goes, his mere presence on Earth causes natural disasters to start forming. Downplayed in later appearances; he can still drain life with a touch, but he no longer involuntarily damages the world around him.


Debut: Uncanny X-Men #191 (1985)

This unit is empowered to pass judgment and execute sentence.

A Sentinel sent back from the future to Kill All Mutants who took up the identity of a superhero/ally of non-powered humans and vigilante who went around helping the community and trying to kill innocent mutants simply because he was programmed to. Ridiculously powerful: in its first several appearances it manhandled the Juggernaut, fought the combined lineup of the X-Men and the Lords Cardinal of the Hellfire Club to a standstill, and survived having the mass-equivalent of a small asteroid (actually Harry Leland overloading his gravity power to pull Sebastian Shaw down from having been Thrown Into The Sky) drop on him from orbit. He was later combined with Master Mold, then reborn as Bastion.

Shortly after M-Day, another Nimrod turned up, in the possession of Reverend Striker. It eventually escaped, and fought the New X-Men.

He appears (sort of) as a Boss in the 1992 X-Men arcade game.



Debut: X-Men #53 (1996)

Know my name and fear it: I AM ONSLAUGHT!

A psychic entity with the combined powers of Professor X, Magneto, Franklin Richards, and X-Man.

He appears as the Final Boss of Marvel vs. Capcom: Clash of Super Heroes.



Kevin MacTaggert

Debut: Uncanny X-Men #125 (1979)

Mutant son of long-time Xavier ally Moira MacTaggert, Proteus was sealed away from a young age due to the danger his mutant powers posed to anyone around him. Unfortunately, this only fuelled a psychotic personality that meant he became a rampaging monster when he escaped from his containment.

  • Adaptational Heroism: As mentioned below, he's portrayed more sympathetically in the 90's cartoon.
  • Admiring the Abomination: Magneto speaks admiringly of him in Necrosha after dissipating him to the four winds and when asked how they can be sure he is dead, he replies that not only can they not be sure, they can in fact be sure he's not dead and that it is only a matter of time before he returns again.
  • Antagonistic Offspring: To his mother, Moira.
  • Arch-Enemy: Colossus has become this for him, being the one who stepped up to Shoot the Dog in the first Proteus story. When he has to face Colossus again in Necrosha he has a bit of a freakout, flinging him away rather than toying with him like the others and even yelling at him to "Stay away from me, murderer!"
  • Bad Powers, Bad People: What do you get when you take a prepubescent child and give them a power that allows them to actualize Video Game Cruelty Potential in their actual life? You get Proteus, the villain who brought Wolverine himself to tears.
  • Big Bad: One of the strongest and most recurring ones in Exiles. He was also used as the main villain for an underwhelming Intercontinuity Crossover between the X-Men and Star Trek.
  • Body Horror: Anybody possessed by Proteus can look forward to having their body literally burned up by his mutant power, with ordinary humans typically only able to endure his presence for a matter of days.
  • Body Surf: Due to the Possession Burnout detailed above, Proteus must constantly jump from one host body to another.
  • But for Me, It Was Tuesday: Averted. He recalls all the memories and feelings of all his previous hosts, which ultimately becomes one of his few weaknesses.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: This was his original goal, as his debut storyline had him cut a swathe of terror across Scotland before finally finding his father in Edinburgh and choosing him for his final host. He used his father's body to fight the X-Men, knowing it would be destroyed and probably even hoping for it.
  • Chekhov's Gunman:
    • After the All-New X-Men's first and disastrous run in with Magneto, as they flee Wolverine notes one of the Muir Island center's cells labelled "Mutant X" is damaged, but he doesn't have time to tell anyone. Several issues later, Muir Island is still abandoned, and an angry Scotsman comes calling looking to blow up the facility over a boat Magneto destroyed, just as Proteus is in need of a body.
    • In true Chris Claremont fashion, Proteus was revealed as this in X-Men Forever 2 via his Possession Burnout. That series, which presented a continuity where Claremont had free reign, showed burnout as a mutant epidemic, exacerbated by the use of their powers and always fatal. This in turn made Proteus not just Mutant X but Mutant Zero as well, since he was the first mutant known to suffer from burnout.
  • Child by Rape: And it's explicitly stated to be the reason why he's so screwed up too, as he was able to sense his mother's overwhelming negative emotions from in the womb, leading to...
  • Childhood Brain Damage: Because his mutant abilities manifested so early, his mind was irrevocably damaged by his mother's negative emotions (emotions that she was justified to and couldn't help, being a rape victim), making him The Sociopath from birth.
  • Energy Beings: At some point his powers reduced him to this state. When he possesses Morph in Exiles he is delighted at being able assume his original form again through shapeshifting.
  • Fetus Terrible: In his first major storyline it is stated outright that his mutant powers manifested while he was still in a fetal state (most mutants don't manifest until at least puberty) and that he sensed his mother's overwhelming hatred for his father (he was conceived in a rape), leading to his present-day insanity. His mother herself coldly pronounces that it was too late for him before he was even born.
  • Freudian Excuse: In the 90s X-Men cartoon, he was portrayed much more sympathetically than his original comics counterpart, including a desire to reconnect with a father who never wanted him.
  • Fusion Dance: In Exiles he finally found himself the perfect host in Morph, whose shapeshifting and durability made him the one host Proteus couldn't burn out. As time went on the submerged persona of Morph began to reassert himself, and ultimately he convinced Proteus to willingly merge with him in one of these.
  • Godzilla Threshold: In his original appearance, Moira demonstrates the seriousness of the situation by telling the X-Men that even though Kevin is her only son, there's only one way to stop him - they have to kill him. Ultimately, it's Colossus, perhaps the most innocent of the X-Men, who does it.
  • Good Feels Good: He eventually comes to feel this way in Exiles, an inevitable consequence of his ability to recall the memories and feeling of his previous hosts combined with his long-term possession of the heroic Morph.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: His first victim was a man who was about to blow up Moira's facility. His last was his abusive father.
  • Lethal Joke Character: After possessing Morph he assimilates much of his host's playful and joking personality, but is still a deadly serious threat. At least until Morph reasserts himself.
  • Lighter and Softer: His incarnation from the animated series is this, as his possession ability is no longer lethal to his hosts.
  • Meaningful Rename: Originally called simply "Mutant X", he rejected that name in battle with Wolverine and renamed himself Proteus, both after the changing Greek god of myth and the room his mother sealed him in.
  • Multiversal Conqueror: He aimed to become one of these in Exiles.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: When the Scarlet Witch rewrote reality in House of M she also unwittingly gave Proteus a world where his mother was powerless to stop him. This led to Proteus becoming an infamous Scottish serial killer who was ultimately able to escape his home reality and become a threat to the entire multiverse.
  • Possession Burnout: The major drawback of his mutant power. Not only does it burn out anybody he possesses, it even burns out his own body, forcing him into an Energy Being state.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: In the 90s X-Men cartoon. More manchild than psychopath
  • Reality Warper: One of the first in the X-universe and still an extremely high-end example, even today.
  • Removed Achilles' Heel: His traditional weakness to metal was nullified after he possessed Morph, as Morph's unique physiology protected him from it somehow.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: His mother was forced to seal him in a cell on Muir Island after his mutant powers manifested. In a particularly dick move worthy of Charles, she kept his imprisonment secret and identified him to visitors as "Mutant X".
  • The Sociopath: Most of the time it is biologically impossible for any child to be a sociopath from birth, but Proteus became one as a consequence of his mutant powers manifesting so early.
  • To Create a Playground for Evil: In the climax of his first storyline he transforms Edinburgh into his personal plaything and even asks the X-Men playfully if they've "ever heard a city scream".
  • Violent Glaswegian: Proteus was a psychotic Scottish shape-changing villain. Not technically from Glasgow, but the island he came from was fictional, so it doesn't matter a whole lot.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: In most continuities he is vulnerable to metal.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Being locked up by one's own mother and kept in a cell for years as an anonymous prisoner can't be good for anyone's mental stability. Amazingly, his father was even worse.
  • The Worf Effect: Did this to Wolverine in the original comic and the animated series. The animated series version left Wolverine sobbing into his hands and vomiting, it was so nightmarish.
  • Your Worst Nightmare: In any continuity, he's one of a handful of people Wolverine is afraid of.

    Reverend Craig 

A Christian minister from Scotland and biological father of Rahne Sinclair, better known as Wolfsbane. Not that he ever admitted this; though he raised her for the first thirteen years of her life, he claimed only to be her foster father and told her she had been abandoned at birth by her mother, a prostitute. Literally beating his doctrine of religion into her, to the point he convinced her that she was a worthless sinner who deserved death, the breaking point came when her mutant gene activated and transformed her into a wolf-like being; Reverend Craig shot her, then led the mob that tried to burn her at the stake. After she escaped him, he disappeared... until he resurfaced as a fanatical member of the Purifiers, founded by Reverend William Stryker. Fittingly, his bedevilment of his daughter cost him his life when he brainwashed her and accidentally triggered the conditioning, causing her to kill and devour him.

    Reverend William Stryker 

Reverend Stryker

William Stryker
Debut: X-Men: God Loves, Man Kills (1981)

A televangelist who saw himself on a mission from God to save humanity from the mutants, he and his Corrupt Church believed that mutants are creatures of the Devil. He led a Christian militia (the Purifiers), and was not above killing mutant children to see the Lord's will carried out. He was a fairly obscure character whose only appearance was in the graphic novel God Loves, Man Kills, but when the book was used as the basis for the second movie, he resurfaced in the comics and remained a recurring villain until his death.

  • Anti-Villain: As originally written by Chris Claremont in God Loves, Man Kills, where he was portrayed as a Well-Intentioned Extremist military veteran, American patriot and man of faith who feared the increasingly powerful and dangerous mutants of the Marvel universe. He was Nice to the Waiter, personally brave and caring and a true believer; the only real problem with him (though obviously a major one) was his apocalyptic anti-mutant religiosity. Averted in several later stories, where the writers massively increased his villainy, making him personally unsympathetic and even hypocritical, as well.
  • Artistic License – Religion: Pleasantly averted in his initial appearance, at least largely; Chris Claremont did his research and wrote a quite believable Evangelical/Fundamentalist villain. Unfortunately, later writers play the trope totally straight, to the point that some versions of Stryker (a Fundamentalist—i.e., arch-Protestant—preacher) resemble Anime Catholicism more than anything else... as his image here attests.
  • Back from the Dead: Bastion briefly revived him for his council of anti-mutant extremists. He's killed again by Archangel, but then later reappears in "Weapons of Mutant Destruction."
  • Badass Bookworm: Can apparently quote whole chapters of the Holy Scriptures by heart. He is shown to study them with great passion (in the King James Version, of course) in his original appearance.
  • Badass Normal: Stryker is just a normal, elderly man, albeit with military training and in fairly good shape. Thus, he rarely fights the X-Men fist to fist, but those examples where he's forced to fight show that he's still a very tough old man, competent and cool under fire.
  • Badass Preacher: A much more depraved example than most. Before his congregation was written as an outright Church Militant. The iconic image is where he smites down Magneto with a Bible quote, but this applies generally with Stryker. Standing up against superheroes when all you have is your own two hands and maybe a pistol in them takes courage, and not getting promptly smashed doing it takes serious competence. Especially for a man who was in his sixties in the 1980s. Stryker's chief villainous virtue is his bravery, fueled by his faith, but he's also a military veteran who knows how to handle a gun.
  • Bait the Dog: Stryker does indeed have his moments of seeming kindness, such as treating his minions well enough and even sparing his own mutant son rather than kill him, but he always subverts these potentially kind acts in some horrible way or another, such as executing the same minions he claims to have "respected" if they go against his ideals, or using the same son he spared as a guinea pig for horrible experiments before brainwashing him into a fanatic like himself.
    • Furthermore, what is perhaps so eerily genuine about Stryker's villainy is that, much like many fanatics, he doesn't perform kind acts for the sake of others, but rather to make himself feel superior to everyone else in his "righteousness."
  • Black and White Insanity: As part of his religious interpretation. As seen below, he is actually very tolerant about many other things, at least for a fundamentalist, but the one group he is utterly hostile to is the mutants. All mutants are evil in his eyes, being creatures of Satan rather than God. If they appear otherwise, they are merely faking it. He even disowned one of his own most trusted and loyal followers when she turned out to be a mutant.
  • Breakout Villain: He was originally a non-canonical character, but due to him and the story he was in being just that good he was eventually promoted to canon and brought in to be a regular villain. Then the movies got ahold of him, and today he might just be one of the X-Men's best-known villains. And certainly Wolverine's.
  • Canon Immigrant: Stryker was originally written as the villain of a dubiously canon graphic novel. Because it turned out to be a really good graphic novel, it was eventually canonized, as was Stryker himself.
  • Church Militant: Leads the Purifiers, an anti-mutant militia with strong Christian/fundamentalist undertones.
  • Composite Character: The character seen in the films is more or less a combination of Stryker and Andre Thorton/Truett Hudson from the pages of Weapon X.
  • Deliberate Values Dissonance: Chris Claremont said in an interview that when he originally wrote the character, he wanted to make Stryker a real man of faith, unlike the Straw Hypocrite stereotype of the insincere Christian minister in fiction. His Stryker really, truly believes, and is an honest, moral, hard-working, unselfish and indeed admirable man in many ways—Whose actions nevertheless clash severely with the moral beliefs of most readers. However, not all writers agreed with Claremont's interpretation, and regardless of Claremont's original intent, Stryker ultimately comes off as a monstrous fanatic more than the upstanding individual Claremont may have originally intended.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: He has nothing against other races, and accepts them as equals in his organization. His views on women appear remarkably liberal as well, given his conservative politics otherwise. And in spite of his strong, fundamentalist Christian faith, he respects sincere believers in other religions, and has no trouble working with them or being friends with them. Of course, he also has zero problem brutally murdering these same people if they do something he deems "sinful" or simply to further his goals.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Stryker tries to paint himself as having honor and standards, in just one case shooting down Dr. Alba's offer to begin performing horrifying experiments on unwilling subjects, but when the chips are down, Stryker shows time and time again that he can and will cross any line in his quest for mutant genocide, having zero issues blowing up an entire building of said subjects when it suits him.
  • Evil Virtues: Regardless of his wickedness, Stryker does have his "positive" traits, such as bravery, determination, resourcefulness and, of course, over above all else — burning, passionate faith. This for the original version; in subsequent appearances he became progressively less impressive as his true, more evil side reared its head more and more.
  • Fantastic Racism: Against mutants.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: Complements of Archangel's razor-sharp wings, though he somehow recovered.
  • Heel–Face Turn: In Chris Claremont's X-Treme X-Men follow-up arc to God Loves, Man Kills, he had Stryker meet a mutant minister whose bias against humans was similar to his own in some ways, experience My God, What Have I Done?, and earn Redemption Equals Indefinite Stasis. It didn't last, predictably.
  • Knight of Cerebus: Possibly the single darkest X-Men villain, surpassing even Cassandra Nova. Yes, Cassandra has a much higher body count than Stryker (16 million versus 474, at last toll), but Stryker is arguably scarier just because of how realistic his threat is. He also commands a faithful following even in death.
  • Knight Templar: One of the most classic examples in comics. Stryker is completely fanatical over his belief that all mutants are abominations deserving of genocide, claiming they are the spawn of Satan himself. His hatred of mutantkind is so strong that he murdered his own wife for giving birth to one, and raised the mutant boy as a lab rat and turned him into a psychopathic fanatic like himself. Stryker is fully convinced that he is in the right, and this is what makes him all the more wicked. Stryker has no compunctions with killing humans, either, as he regularly murders any who stand in his way, or even just as distraction. As long as it enables him to more thoroughly kill as many mutants as possible, Stryker will go to any lengths, innocent casualties be damned.
  • Motive Decay: Mixed with Insane Troll Logic. Convinced that lack of support from the Lord was the reason why he continually failed to wipe out mutantkind, Stryker decided in the 2017 Weapon X series to stop killing mutants in the name of God... and start killing them in the name of Satan... even though the reason why he hated mutants in the first place is because he was convinced that they were Hellspawn. To add to the insanity, his new Religion of Evil cult is managed by Mentallo, a mutant.
  • My Death Is Just the Beginning: He planned for this in the form of the Predator X program.
  • Non-Action Big Bad: Of a sort. Stryker is an elderly man and usually has to get his followers to fight on his behalf, but after he acquired a Nimrod gauntlet he was more than happy to enter the fray with it.
  • Nothing Personal: Claims this before coldly executing his lieutenant, Anne, when they find out that she is a mutant and will have to die along with the others when he exterminates them with his psychic superweapon. Beforehand, he genuinely seemed to like and respect her, but the second she shows signs of being a mutant, Stryker viciously rejects her for being an abomination and flings her to her death, showing that it truly was nothing personal; in both his murder, and relationship with her.
  • Obliviously Evil: From Stryker's perspective, he is fighting a war to save all humanity from a non-human and, indeed, literally Satanic threat. He knows his side are the good guys, and derives great strength from this conviction.
  • Offing the Offspring: In Claremont's original run, the simple young noncom Stryker and his beloved wife were unknowingly exposed to nuclear fallout, and later involved in a car crash. With his wife severely injured, he delivered her child—Which turned out to be a horribly deformed mutant. Horrified and disgusted, the uneducated young man killed it, then snapped his own wife's neck for giving birth to a monstrosity, after which he finally attempted to commit suicide, himself. He survived, suffering a crisis of faith, but found new purpose in the belief that God had chosen him to lead humanity's struggle against the mutants. This was later retconned, however; turns out he didn't actually kill his son, he instead raised him in secret to follow in his footsteps, while also having A.I.M. apparently stabilize his mutation with dangerous experiments so that he was no longer disfigured by or dying from it.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: What makes Stryker so scary is how you can easily imagine a guy just like him running for president in the real world, just with mutants getting swapped out for the real-life minority group of your choice. Next to him, Graydon Creed practically looks like a choir boy.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Or use a pink robot's arm as their Weapon of Choice, either or.
  • Red Right Hand: Reverend Stryker stumbled upon a disoriented alternate Nimrod and uses the robot's glowing pink hand as a glove and an apparent weapon. When Bastion brings him back, he continues using it.
  • Right-Wing Militia Fanatic: He secretly controls a uniformed anti-mutant militia, the Purifiers.
  • Sergeant Rock: Used to be one as Master Sergeant Stryker, before he became a minister.
  • Sinister Minister: He has shades of this.
  • Shoot the Dog: From his point of view, the death of his wife and son are this.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Stryker and Alba; he hires her to create a new Ultimate Lifeform to wipe out mutants and their allies, and while the project advances relatively smoothly for a while, it eventually becomes clear that the reverend and the doctor hate each other and are just barely cooperating because Stryker needs Alba's intellect (but not her attitude or complete disregard for collateral) while Alba needs Stryker's resources (but not his fanaticism or hindering morals, as flip-floppy as they may be). So it's unsurprising that the two eventually turn on each other, with Stryker emerging from the conflict a mangled mess, reduced to begging the Weapon X team for help in dealing with her and Weapon H because, as he explains, "You think I like this, mutant? You and all your kind repulse me! But we have one thing—and one thing only—in common... a shared enemy. And you must be prepared for her! I have looked into her eyes—and seen nothing there. Her focus is inhuman and unwavering. She will not be satisfied until she has proven her perverted scientific dogma has birthed the perfect predator!"
  • Troubled Sympathetic Bigot: When written by Claremont. God Loves, Man Kills showed him very disturbed when his right hand and personal friend, Anne, turned out to be a latent mutant (though still not enough so to call off his indiscriminately mutant-eliminating master plan), while in the sequel story in Xtreme X-Men, he was even willing to sacrifice his own life to save the sympathetic mutant Kitty Pryde, after he had come to respect her. Some other writers ignore this aspect of his personality, however, making him a completely one-dimensional cardboard cut-out of frothing insanity.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: His original Christian crusade is very popular with at least some sections of the American people, and not just because of his opposition to the mutants, but because he is so obviously sincere in his faith and his zeal for the poor and humble.
  • Villainous Valour: Confronted Magneto without fear in the original comic, and smacked him down with a sermon of awesome. Also in later appearances. Once, aboard a crashing plane, a more superhuman villain asks him whether he is afraid. Stryker answers to the effect that no, he is not, for his own life... But his work is not yet finished.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: While Stryker believes himself to be an agent of God, simply trying to save humankind from the plague of mutants, he is actually just a classically delusional Knight Templar, and since he considers the mutants (who view themselves as a superior race, or at least the villainous ones do) the literal Synagogue of Satan, the children of the Devil of whom Jesus spoke in the Gospel of John, he will do anything to wipe them out and assert his fanaticism. In short, he's an extremist who only thinks he has good intentions.
    Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. (John 8:44, King James Version)
  • White Hair, Black Heart: Like fellow anti-mutant racist Bastion, Stryker sports white hair and has a heart as cold and steely and deadly as a discarded refrigerator with the door still attached.
  • Working-Class Hero: A villainous example. Stryker comes from a humble background, and was formerly an enlisted man in the Army. It is his own ability, faith and hard work that have made him a major religious and political figure by the time of God Loves, Man kills.
  • Would Hurt a Child: He killed his own monstrous mutant child as a young man, in shock after a car crash. Later he tried to shoot Kitty Pryde, who was a teenager at that time. He also arranged the deaths of several of the X-Men's students after M-Day, personally shooting Icarus in the head.



Senator Steven Shaffran

Debut: X-Factor #72 (1991)

You, my genetically-challenged friends, are about to choke down a three course helping of trouble.

A Corrupt Politician and secret mutant with high-order probability manipulating abilities. Seeking to become President Evil, he allies himself with Mr. Sinister, only to be quickly Out-Gambitted and disgraced before the American people.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: He aims to become President Evil but comes nowhere close, though Mr. Sinister says he would have gotten there eventually had he not intervened.
  • Combo Platter Powers: His mutant power is essentially a stronger version of the Scarlet Witch's probability manipulation (or what was her level at the time) with a few neat extras that verge on making him a Reality Warper. Indeed, this combo is so effective that Mr. Sinister considers him Too Powerful to Live and sets him up for a fall.
  • Corrupt Politician: It's his day job.
  • Emotion Control: Per his own explanation, he can "unsettle the minds of others and cloud their thinking and abilities."
  • Evil Counterpart: He's explicitly compared in text to the Scarlet Witch and even has plans to take her out once he's done with X-Factor. Luckily he never gets that far.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Sinister offers him this, giving him a gun with one bullet after disgracing him and telling him it's a more reliable option than slitting his wrists as disgraced senators in Ancient Rome used to do. An incensed Ricochet turns the gun on Sinister, but the bullet bounces off the latter's cape and hits him instead.
  • Fantastic Racism: He refers to Havok and his X-Factor team as "genetically challenged" but has no problem working with Mr. Sinister's mutant miscreant team, the Nasty Boys.
  • Foreshadowing: An unintended case, but Mr. Sinister's concern that Ricochet's mutant power could reach Reality Warper levels nicely dovetails the Scarlet Witch's power being increases to Ricochet levels and then well beyond...
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: He attempts to discredit X-Factor before the public, only to be himself discredited by a shapeshifted Mr. Sinister pretending to be him.
  • Irony: His mutant codename is Ricochet and he's killed by a bullet ricochet.
  • Just Between You and Me: He's polite (and gloaty) enough to explain the full scope of his abilities to the Nasty Boys (and by extension to the reader).
  • Killed Off for Real: In X-Factor #75.
  • Living a Double Life: He's Happily Married with a wife and daughter, neither of whom know that he is a mutant or in league with Sinister.
  • Out-Gambitted: By Sinister, who disgraces him by abducting him and posing as him in DC via his shapeshifting ability.
  • Pretty Little Headshots: The bullet that kills him leaves a neat little hole in his head, exactly the definition of this trope.
  • Sabotage to Discredit: He uses his mutant powers to discredit X-Factor under instructions from Mr. Sinister, only to get a taste of his own medicine when Sinister sets him to look like a power-mad supervillain.
  • Sinister Silhouettes: He's first introduced this way, speaking with a similarly silhouetted collaborator (spoiler alert, it's Sinister) to obscure his identity as well.
  • Take That!: When asked by the Nasty Boys why he didn't use his powers on George H. W. Bush during the 1989 election, he says, "I did. Why do you think he nominated Quayle?"
  • Too Powerful to Live: And when Mr. Sinister thinks so, you know there's something to it.
  • Unknown Rival: He plans to eventually take out the Scarlet Witch, who he considers his only rival. Wanda has no idea he exists, and when he goes to his grave she still doesn't know him from Adam-X.
  • Unwitting Pawn: He thinks Mr. Sinister is guiding him into the White House, when really all he guides him into is an unmarked grave.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: An extreme case. He appears in 4 issues, and in 2 of those 4 issues he's only seen in shadow.



Karl Lykos
Debut: Uncanny X-Men #60 (1969)

Dead, mutant? I am evil incarnate — I cannot die! Behold, fools, the rebirth of Sauron!

A mutate that was originally supposed to be a vampire, that was a no-go with the comics code at the time, so instead he was reworked into an energy-sucking pterodactyl man. Really. Lykos was on an expedition to Antarctica with his father when they stumbled upon some caves leading to the Savage Land, full of Pteranodons. Lykos was injured by a Pterodon scratch and gained the ability to drain energy from other humans, and later when he did so to a mutant, the ability to turn into a giant were-Pterodactyl with hypnotic powers. Going mad with evil, he names himself after the villain from his favorite books and decides to try to suck the life out of everyone. Joined Toad's Brotherhood in The '90s, despite not being a mutant.

  • Actually Not a Vampire: In his early appearances as a creepy private-practice physician whose patients experience anemic symptoms, the still human-seeming Karl Lykos gives off all the classical warning signs for some kind of vampire or other. Actually, he's a much more bizarre mutant monster. As the intro paragraph specifies, he is also an inverted meta-example, with the creators trying to make a villain who was as vampire-like as possible without upsetting the editors.
  • Animal-Themed Superbeing: Pteranodons.
  • Animorphism: A sort of Involuntary Shapeshifting, where Lykos transforms into Sauron whenever he absorbs mutant energy.
  • Arch-Enemy: Forgotten in recent years, but back in the day he was one of these to Havok. As Karl Lykos, he even served a stint as Havok's psychiatrist.
  • Bad Future: In the miniseries Weapon X: Days of Future Past Sauron is a high-ranking collaborator with the Sentinels, having grown so fat off mutant energies he can no longer fly.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: Perhaps fitting for a Superpowered Evil Side, Sauron just can't shut up about how evil he is.
  • Combo Platter Powers: Practically the poster child of this trope. He's a guy that can drain the life force of others, turns into a flying pterodactyl man when he drains the life force of a mutant, said pterodactyl man form also has Super Strength, the power to hypnotize people and can breathe fire? Spider-Man even noted how ridiculous him being a vampiric pterodactyl man was without even making note of all his other powers.
  • The Conqueror: Numerous times Sauron has attempted to raise an army from the disaffected residents of the Savage Land in order to seize control of it. These efforts are usually thwarted by Ka-Zar.
  • Cut Lex Luthor a Check: See here. Spider-Man notes that he could be using his advanced tech to cure cancer, but being a Superpowered Evil Side Sauron has no interest in such Mundane Utility.
  • Dinosaurs Are Dragons: Later appearances saw him acquire the ability to breathe fire.
  • The Dragon: Often serves this role to whatever Big Bad of the day is currently trying to take control of the Savage Land. Zaladane and Garrok have both employed his services; unfortunately for them, his Chronic Backstabbing Disorder leads him to invariably stick the knife in at inconvenient moments.
  • Enemy Mine: During the Secret Invasion Sauron allied with his longtime Savage Land enemies Ka-Zar and Shanna the She-Devil against the Skrull invaders.
  • Enemy Within: Sauron is this to the fairly mild-mannered Lykos.
  • Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: Averted. No matter how silly this guy sounds, he's always a pain in the neck to deal with.
  • From Bad to Worse: As if being tempted to drain the life-energy of your patients all the time isn't bad enough, you then discover that draining another mutant turns you into a dangerous monster beyond your control.
  • Evil Teacher: Wolverine and the X-Men saw him find employment as a science teacher for the Hellfire Academy. Definitely a showcasing moment of the character's Narm Charm.
    Sauron: (wearing glasses and a lab coat) I am Sauron, supreme ruler of this classroom, master of all second period!
  • Frontier Doctor: As Lykos, he attempted to become one of these in the Savage Land. His efforts earned him the friendship of Ka-Zar, but eventually Status Quo Is God kicked in and Sauron returned.
  • Giant Flyer: Not terribly gigantic, outside of that one time he fought Garrok, but still counts.
  • Hero Killer: Early in the first X-Force run he killed Sam Guthrie aka Cannonball. It... probably didn't take?
  • Jekyll & Hyde: Lykos is an essentially decent and well-meaning person. His dark side, Sauron, is a vicious monster and a genocidal maniac.
  • Large Ham: As deadly as he can be, Sauron is by his nature not one of the X-Men's more serious villains, and frequently spends as much of his time chewing the panels as he does pecking at the heroes.
  • The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: Lykos is a normal man who was turned into a mutate after being attacked by the Savage Land's breed of pterodactyls and has never had any investment in mutants beyond their use in feeding his Superpowered Evil Side, yet he randomly joined up with the Brotherhood in the 90s.
  • Life Drinker: Due to the whole can't-be-a-vampire thing, Lykos ended up as one of these. He can drain the life force of anything he touches, but only mutant energy will turn him into Sauron. As his Superpowered Evil Side, Sauron's constantly nettling him when he's human to go drain the nearest handy mutant in his vicinity.
  • Line-of-Sight Name: He named himself after The Lord of the Rings villain. He even says so himself on-panel during his origin story.
    Sauron: I choose... evil! An evil so great... so monumental that only one name in all the annals of literature will contain it! The name of Tokien's ultimate villain... that dark lord who personified evil, who was truly evil incarnate! The name of — SAURON!
  • Make My Monster Grow: In one episode of the X-Men animated series he somehow absorbs ambient volcanic energies (just roll with us on this) to do battle with an equally-enlarged Garrok.
  • Morally Ambiguous Doctorate: For many years an irrelevant bit of plot trivia, this has actually helped him get legitimate work in recent years, first as an unlikely member of Weapon X and then, in an even more unlikely twist, as a teacher working for the Hellfire Academy.
  • Morality Pet: Tanya Anderssen, his longtime love interest. She was murdered by Toad in the 90s as part of his scheme to reawaken and recruit Sauron for the Brotherhood.
  • Mouth of Sauron: Has never had a character serve as this for himself, but amusingly was Garrok's Mouth for a time.
  • Noble Demon: Lykos is this, as despite falling prey to the wiles of Sauron more often than not he's essentially a decent and well-meaning person. The whole reason he's in the Savage Land in the first place is because he exiled himself there, thinking there would be no mutants for Sauron to prey on.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: You don't get much more Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot than a vampiric were-pterodactyl mutate.
  • Ptero Soarer: Scaly skin instead of hair-like pycnofibers? Check (occasional hairstyle aside). Bat-like wing structure? Check. Bipedalism? Check. Identified as a dinosaur? Check.
  • The Quisling: Collaborates with the Sentinels in at least one Bad Future.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Stan Lee must have figured an energy-sucking dinosaur man was the next-most abhorrent thing to an actual vampire.
  • Sanity Slippage: During the 90s, after Toad killed Tanya Anderssen, Sauron starting hallucinating his alter ego Lykos. These hallucinations eventually got to be so frequent that even the Savage Land mutates (who are hardwired to seek out a leader and obey them without question) started questioning his sanity.
  • Sixth Ranger: Randomly recruited to Toad's Brotherhood during the 90s, despite not being a mutant himself.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: Sauron is very much this.
  • Tropes Are Tools: As obnoxious as The Comics Code was, it actually worked for the better here. Lots of stories have vampires, but how many have energy draining mutant were-pterodactyls with fire breath?
  • Unexplained Recovery: Being one of the longest-running X-villains, he's had his share of these. There was the time Cable shot him dead, for instance. Another time Lykos made a psychic Heroic Sacrifice supposedly destroying his and Sauron's personalities forever. Both times he recovered and returned without explanation.
  • Villains Out Shopping: When Sabretooth threw a party to celebrate taking over the Japanese underworld Sauron made a cameo appearance as one of the guests in attendance.
  • Weapon of Choice: One appearance had him carrying an actual prehistoric club. Of course, it was included with his action figure.
  • Werewolf Theme Naming: Notable for being a werebeast but definitely not a werewolf, his last name Lykos is Greek for wolf.
  • Yo Yo Plot Point: He gets cured at the end of most encounters only to get un-cured again at the beginning of the next. As ever, Status Quo Is God.
    • Trapped in Villainy: Lykos wants nothing more than to be rid of Sauron forever, but eventually his powers always wind up getting the better of him. Tragic Monster indeed.

    Sebastian Shaw 

Sebastian Hiram Shaw
AKA: Black King
Debut: Uncanny X-Men #129 (1980)

I didn't build a billion-dollar empire from nothing by making mistakes.

The long-time leader of the Hellfire Club, a social club for millionaires he remodelled into a secretive society for evil mutants bent on world domination, Sebastian Shaw is a snobbish, elitist, self-centred Jerkass and Corrupt Corporate Executive with the mutant power of kinetic energy absorption, meaning that any physical attack only makes him stronger making him a very difficult opponent to defeat in combat. However, he mostly relies on manipulation, treachery, deceit, and his oodles and oodles of cash and connections to further his evil schemes.

He appears as a Boss in the first X-Men game for the Sega Game Gear.

  • Abnormal Ammo: As part of the X-Men and the Hellfire Club's attempt to destroy Conflict Killer Nimrod, the Hellfire Club's Black Bishop Harry Leland used his power of gravity manipulation to bring Shaw back down after Nimrod hurled him into the atmosphere. The ensuing impact was stated to have the force of a small meteor.
  • Ambition Is Evil: Shaw is a classic example of the 'American dream' route to success building himself up from rags to riches. He's also the classic example of the It's All About Me Jerkass who would fit right into the House this trope was originally named for.
  • Archnemesis Dad: A case of Abusive Parents between him and his son Shinobi.
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: His Hellfire Club is an entire organization devoted to this, and as its head Shaw does his very best to set an (evil) example.
  • Arms Dealer: Shaw Industries specializes in Mecha-Mooks.
  • Anything That Moves: Described by Emma Frost as "sexually obsessed" and while she might be overselling it there, Shaw's very definitely a ladies' man.
  • Badass in a Nice Suit: The 19th century version, at least.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: A high-functioning example; he was and remains a serious threat, but in practice he is usually outplayed and manipulated by more cunning and dangerous villains. He frequently teams up with other X-Men rogues but is usually either double-crossed, or his own double-crossing comes back to bite him.
  • Chess Motifs: His Hellfire Club rank is 'Black King' and the rest of the Club uses chess piece names for their ranks as well (Bishop, Rook, etc).
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Runs his own company, Shaw Industries, that's best known for mass-producing Sentinels.
  • Death Is Cheap: He was assassinated by his son Shinobi in 1991, but five years later was revealed to have survived the attempt. It helps that it wasn't a very good attempt.
  • Easy Amnesia: A story arc in the early 2010s had him lose most of his memories. Hope Summers argues for letting him stay on Utopia because Amnesiacs Are Innocent.
  • Energy Absorption: His Mutant power is this, allowing him to absorb kinetic energy and convert it into strength. Getting in a fistfight with him is a very bad idea, as he'll just get stronger the longer the fight goes on.
  • Evil Mentor: Retconned into being one for the White Queen/Emma Frost. Note that originally they were very much depicted as partners in crime.
  • Faking the Dead: Through most of The '90s.
  • Genius Bruiser: When it comes to the cutthroat business world Shaw is a savant without peer. Flashbacks reveal that in his youth he had even greater potential, immersing himself in his studies as a way to escape poverty and "soaking up knowledge like a sponge".
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: He bore a prominent scar across his right eye during the latter half of the 90s; Madelyne Pryor eventually healed it as a demonstration of what she could offer him in a Villain Team-Up.
  • The Hedonist: A mild example, but Shaw is very much a Rich Bitch who enjoys living large and has no problems with letting anyone know it.
  • It's All About Me: He not only believes this, but wears it like a badge of honor. When he teams up with the X-Men against Mr. Sinister (who was a potential Grand Theft Me threat to Shaw at the time) he flatly tells the heroes he's not helping them out of any moral obligation, but just because he's an egotist who can't bear the idea of someone hijacking his body.
  • King Incognito: Like Nightcrawler, he sometimes carries a holographic image inducer for when he wants to move around in public unseen.
  • Logical Weakness: Shaw derives energy from any form of energy used against him, so any attack using ice and cold, which are essentially removing thermal energy will work against him.
  • Make Way for the New Villains: Back in the 90s, Shaw was one of many older villains to be bumped off by the new guard in the name of establishing their cred — in his case, it was his son Shinobi who did the deed. He eventually came back, but it took seven years and he sported a very prominent scar upon his return.
  • Manipulative Bastard: A fairly limp example, and really more a case of The Corrupter, as Shaw's main M.O. is to appeal to people's greed and vanity when trying to get them to join up with him. He tends to just automatically assume everyone is as self-serving as he is, which works for him every now and then, but usually doesn't.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: A more complex example than most. Shaw is not himself invulnerable, but his mutant ability renders him pretty much impervious to physical attacks of any kind.
  • No Hero to His Valet: Late in the original X-Force run Shaw is shown walking with his personal assistant, who is trying to coordinate a festival on his behalf. After a couple of panels of getting ignored, said assistant makes the mistake of getting frustrated and asking Shaw if he's even the least bit interested in what he was saying. Shaw's response?
    Sebastian Shaw: No, Carmen, not especially. Now be a dear and throw yourself off a cliff for raising your voice to me, that'll be all.
  • Non-Idle Rich: Despite being a member of the Fiction 500 Shaw is never the type to rest on his laurels.
  • Offing the Offspring: Confirmed in Necrosha for ordering the off-screen death of his son Shinobi.
  • The Peeping Tom: It's revealed by Emma Frost that Shaw built the New York Branch Hellfire Club buildings "with all of his personal kinks and perversions in mind." Naturally, this includes secret hallways and portholes to play voyeur with.
  • Personality Powers: Shaw is, for better or worse, is a Determinator who never gives up and has built his iron will over a lifetime of climbing from Rags to Riches. Fittingly, his mutant power reflects his willpower: any (physical) thing thrown at him just makes him stronger. Given the Hellfire Club's kinky aesthetic on top of this power, Shaw's sometimes been presented as a Combat Sadomasochist, or even Too Kinky to Torture.
  • Phlebotinum Overload: Shaw's kinetic energy absorption ability is powerful, but it can be circumvented if one drops something on him quick and hard enough. There was also the time when Wolverine just kept coming at him until Shaw's mass caused the floor to give out under him.
  • Playing Both Sides: The biggest and worst example is that he is a mutant, yet he funded and helped to construct the mutant-hunting Sentinels. Especially bad (though poetically ironic) considering they were created out of fear that mutants could be people like him.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Probably the most stark example among X-villains — Shaw is kind of like the Donald Trump of evil mutants, having no higher belief or creed in anything beyond what's good for Sebastian Shaw. This utterly self-serving nature makes Shaw fairly resilient in coming back from his various defeats, but it also means there's no one that's ever really had any loyalty for him and his subordinates tend to sell him out or betray him at the drop of a hat.
  • Puzzle Boss: Arguably an in-universe example. Shaw simply cannot be defeated by mere force, which forces the heroes to get creative whenever they have to fight him.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Money!, Powers, & Connections
  • Self-Made Man: The X-Men: Hellfire Club miniseries fleshed out his background. Kind of like Tom Riddle, Sebastian was the son of a family long past its glory days who took the traditional 'American dream' route to success and got corrupted along the way.
  • Shout-Out: Like most of the first gen Hellfire Club villains, Shaw's appearance and name were based off an actor; in his case, the British-born Robert Shaw.
  • Super Speed: Not seen as much as his other uses of his ability, and not anywhere near The Flash levels, but Shaw surprises people with this from time to time.
  • Super Strength: The primary offensive use of his mutant power. By converting kinetic energy into strength, Shaw can theoretically mix it up with anybody short of Apocalypse or the Hulk.
  • Villain Team-Up: Being the pragmatic villain he is, Shaw frequently forges alliances with other villains such as Holocaust and Madelyne Pryor.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: Not as much as before (when he could count on the police to help him fight those dangerous mutants the X-Men), but he still has no criminal record and has managed to keep his more questionable activities away from the public eye.
  • War for Fun and Profit: The classic arms dealer war profiteer Playing Both Sides for his own advancement. Depending on the adaptation, sometimes it comes back to bite him.
  • We Can Rule Together: Him and Madelyne Pryor had a brief fling that ended up turning into an Aborted Arc when she abruptly ditched him.
  • You Got Spunk: Expresses roughly these sentiments towards Irene Merryweather, the plucky reporter who risked her life repeatedly investigating his personal history in the X-Men: Hellfire Club miniseries. After giving her a personal explanation, Shaw extends Merryweather a rare invitation to join the Club. She throws it in the fire, of course.


Selene Gallio
AKA: Black Queen
Debut: New Mutants #9 (1983)

I am Selene, daughter of the moon and mistress of the fire. Come, children, give yourselves to me.

Former and most prominent Black Queen of the Hellfire Club, Selene is the oldest known living mutant (after she killed the other Externals), born over 14000 years ago, after the fall of Atlantis, but before the age of Conan the Barbarian, and is an ancient enemy of Kulan Gath. She doubles as a sorceress and psychic vampire, with a myriad abilities, some of which are magic, some of which are genetic. Regal, vain, manipulative, demonic-level pure evil, and extremely hard to permanently get rid of, she is one of the X-Men's most dangerous adversaries.

  • Achilles' Heel: Her extreme arrogance and vanity, as well as some well-hidden but deep-seated insecurity about the possibility that she may not be able to stave off aging forever. Moonstar took advantage of this and projected an image of her as a hideous old hag that proceeded to warn her that she could only stave off aging for so long before her powers stopped being effective, which caused Selene to have a crippling panic attack.
  • Actually a Doombot: Though not a particularly convincing one — a giant Selene robot appears as a boss in the 1992 video game Spider-Man and the X-Men in Arcade's Revenge.
  • A Goddess Am I: Her recent surfacing gives this as her motivation, although she has claimed to be a goddess since her introduction. She was even worshipped as such since birth, 10,000 years ago, and was even offered regular human sacrifices by her people. It has left her with an ego problem.
    • Even so, she recognizes Akrea as a being older than her and treats her with respect... right up until she leaves her for dead.
  • Ambiguously Bi: She isn't openly bisexual and is in fact a widow of a man named Marcus Gallio. But she also possesses some amount of Lesbian Vampire traits.
  • Arch-Enemy: Initially paired up as one for Rachel Summers, until Rachel was utterly eclipsed in appearances by Emma Frost. She was then redesigned as something of a Foil to Emma, but still has the odd clash with Rachel every now and again.
  • Asshole Victim: In the 90s, when she was betrayed by the Upstarts, a group of wealthy young mutants Selene had been grooming to be the next generation of the Hellfire Club. Upstart Trevor Fitzroy trapped her in a device that systematically disassembled and reassembled her molecular structure, a sickening fate for just about anyone else but somehow appropriate for an immortal predator like Selene.
  • Astonishingly Appropriate Appearance: She embodies the Evil Wears Black trope to such an extent that she never wore anything else but black outfits from the get-go, even after leaving the Hellfire Club. (It can be a little odd to read her first appearances, where- besides being married to a Nova Roman senator- she wore green, purple, and blue.)
  • Back from the Dead: Resurrected by Akrea in X-Men (2013) series.
  • Big Bad: It took a long, long time, but Selene finally got her due as a Big Bad in the Necrosha story arc.
  • Bondage Is Bad: Being a Chris Claremont character, the Black Queen's always had a certain element of fetish to her.
  • Burn the Witch!: Attempted by the senators of Ancient Rome after they discovered her plan to sacrifice the whole city's population to herself. Unfortunately for them Playing with Fire was one of her powers and she merely turned the flames back on them.
  • But for Me, It Was Tuesday: Averted. She absorbs memories along with life force, and therefore does not forget her victims. Not that it makes her care more about them...
  • Chess Motifs: Played with. She took the rank of 'Black Queen' in the Hellfire Club but had been styling herself as a queen long before the Club, or even chess itself, ever existed.
  • Co-Dragons: In the 80s, she and White Queen Emma Frost were the dragons to Sebastian Shaw.
    • Dragon with an Agenda: Naturally, Selene was only in it for herself though, and when Magneto defeated Shaw and proposed expelling him from the Hellfire Club, she wasted no time in siding with Mags.
  • Combo Platter Powers: She can animate objects plus suck people's life force to feed her youth and immortality (plus some minor Psychic Powers and Functional Magic, and various inconsistently enhanced physical abilities). Until she got upgraded; as of Chasing Hellfire, it's "turn into living shadow, plus absorb people entirely to feed her youth and immortality, as well as take on the form of victims."
    • Cast from Hit Points: She calls it 'spending her life energy', but the end result is the same.
    • From a Single Cell: Boasts of being able to reconstitute herself from dust.
    • Life Drinker: She can drain the life out of others to keep herself young. As an added bonus, said lifeforce also fuels her sorcerous powers.
    • Liquid Assets: Originally her Life Drinker powers were only applicable to herself, but after she Took a Level in Badass for the Necrosha story arc she was able to extend it to others.
    • Mind over Matter: She has telekinetic abilities; it's not clear whether these are part of her mutation or the result of some of her Functional Magic.
  • Continuity Snarl: Her home of Nova Roma and relationship with the New Mutant Magma are both tangled in one of these. As written by her creator Chris Claremont, Nova Roma was a lost Roman colony and Magma was her granddaughter. Then Fabian Nicieza came along with retcons that Nova Roma was not ancient but merely a sham city populated by people Selene had brainwashed, and Magma was in fact a British mutant named Allison Crestmere with no relationship to Selene. The two camps have gone back and forth over this, to the extent that modern Selene stories tend to ignore both Nova Roma and Magma entirely due to the continuity being such a mess.
  • The Corrupter: This is pretty much her shtick, as she frequently seeks out innocent and/or impressionable young mutants to turn to her side through various means. Sometimes this works out for her, sometimes it doesn't. But she always gets off on it.
  • Cruel Mercy: What she subjects the Roman senator Eliphas to as his punishment for "betraying her". She saves him from a death of being burned at the stake, but then transforms him into an undying vampire-like creature because she knows the worst fate he can imagine is an eternity without her. Then she buries him alive.
  • Death Is Cheap:
    • Momentarily killed of by Warlock during the 80s, by him draining the life out of her. Once Kulan Garth's reality warp got undone, she was revived.
    • During Chris Claremont's second run on Uncanny X-Men, she was apparently vaporised by Rachel. It didn't take long for her to turn up again, fine and dandy.
    • Killed off at the conclusion of Necrosha, but was resurrected three years later by Arkea.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Statutory rape, apparently, given that she explicitly notes Wither to be of age before she starts seducing him. Still some epic cradle-robbing, though, as she's close to 1000 times his age. The Red Skull is also too evil for her, as she teamed up with the New Mutants once against him.
  • Evil Wears Black: What else would you expect from the ''Black Queen''?
  • Eviler Than Thou: What she did to pre-Heel–Face Turn Emma Frost and her Hellions by using Fitzroy, or to Eli Bard, among others. She also subjected the Externals to this during the Great External Purge.
    • UXM #191 saw Selene get a taste of her own medicine when her ancient foe Kulan Gath subjected her to this, using his magic to inflict a truly horrific case of Body Horror on her.
  • Foil: To Emma Frost, during their time in Hellfire. Now, she's more of an Evil Counterpart.
  • For the Evulz: Doubles as a case of Evil Is Petty — you'd think a person with seventeen millennia — not centuries, millennia — of life experience under their belt would be able to come up with better ways to pass the time than by indulging in petty power-mongering and corrupting impressionable teenagers.
  • Freudian Excuse: Was venerated as a goddess and worshipped basically since birth, and has never really faced consequences that she wasn't either shielded from by her followers or able to talk or fight her way out of. She is one of the most vile, morally reprehensible beings in the X-Men canon (moreso than even Apocalypse, who at least had a far more awful childhood and early adulthood and has consistently held himself to his own beliefs whenever he has been defeated), but there's something of a valid explanation for why she is the way she is.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: Styles herself as the 'Black Queen' and is one of the deadliest of the X-Men's villains.
  • The Hedonist: Even seventeen millennia of self-indulgence haven't sated Selene's appetite for decadence.
  • Human Sacrifice: She got started on this very early, with the tribal elders of her village ordering their own people to sacrifice themselves to her after identifying her as a goddess (see Self-Made Orphan below). Since that time she has spent much of her history being served in this way, either by corrupted citizens or by entire civilizations outright.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Not literally, but close enough. She feeds on the life-force of her victims, leaving only skeletal husks.
  • Immortal Immaturity: She is older than written history itself, yet she has roughly the mentality and attitude of Cersei Lannister.
  • Immortality Immorality: Though Selene is over ten thousand years old she doesn't have a moral bone in her entire body.
  • It's All About Me: Explained, if not really justified: Selene has been worshiped as a goddess literally since her birth, and has spent most of her very long life surrounded by people who venerate her. Interestingly, she has on occasion shown emotion for her worshipers, if not actual empathy, such as when she gave a tender kiss to a Nova Roman general who willingly offered his life to her before sucking him dry.
  • Lesbian Vampire: Perhaps it is just Claremont but trying to turn attractive teenage psychics like Rachel Grey into her disciples seems to be a particular hobby of hers.
  • Light Feminine and Dark Feminine: Invoked. Even long after she had left the Hellfire Club, her costume mirrored that of Emma Frost, only in black instead of white.
  • Make Way for the New Villains: See Asshole Victim above.
  • Manipulative Bitch: Even though she doesn't need to, she really enjoys toying with people's minds to get what she wants. A lot.
  • Mutant: If not the first, then certainly the longest-lived and first known.
  • Never My Fault: Particularly in Necrosha and the stories leading up to it.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh: To go with her regal persona.
  • Of Corsets Sexy: Well, she is in Hellfire...
  • Our Vampires Are Different: She is a psychic vampire.
  • Patriotic Fervor: Has exhibited this at times regarding Nova Roma, a lost colony that has worshiped her as a goddess for centuries. See here for a good example.
  • Physical Goddess: Always styled herself as this, but she really starts living up the role in Necrosha.
  • Recycled Premise: The Necrosha story arc in 2010, of which Selene was the main villain. It was a thinly-veiled reworking of the 2009 DC Comics Crisis Crossover story Blackest Night, just with Nekron and the black power rings swapped out for Selene and her modified transmode virus.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Though Apocalypse claims to be the first mutant, Selene's got him beat pretty handily. At 17,000 years old, she's by far the oldest recorded mutant, as well as one of the oldest beings in the Marvel U period.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Supernatural Powers!/Screw the Rules, I'm Beautiful!
  • Self-Made Orphan: Like fellow X-villain Proteus, Selene's mutant powers manifested much earlier than is normal for mutants - specifically, at the moment of her birth. Her first use of them was to drain her mother's life force dry, leading the village elders to pronounce her a goddess.
  • Solitary Sorceress: Viewed as this by her External brethren, due to her not attending any of their gatherings.
  • Third-Person Person: Often refers to herself in the third person, especially when she wants to sound particularly haughty or menacing.
  • Time Abyss: She's literally been alive for the entirety of recorded history and then some.
  • Ungrateful Bitch: She abandons Arkea to the X-Men, even though Arkea was the being who had facilitated her resurrection.
  • Vain Sorceress: Right up there with the Asgardian Enchantress as one of the most vain and fiercely self-obsessed characters in the Marvel Universe, she is so fixated on her own youth and beauty that Wolverine taunting her by calling her an 'old hag' during Necrosha serves to distract and enrage her during her triumphant ascension, leading to her (temporary) death. An even more direct example is when Dani Moonstar taunted her with an illusion of a withered and ugly image of herself, while warning the ancient sorceress that sooner or later the accumulating centuries would be too much for her powers to deny, leaving her a wrinkled crone forever. The horror of that vision so completely shatters Selene's concentration and confidence during another moment of triumphant ascension that she loses her ability to access her magicks, forcing her to flee.
  • The Vamp: Oh, is she ever! Being a literal (psychic) vampire certainly helps.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Suffers one after being fatally stabbed by Warpath at the end of Necrosha.
    Selene: I... I am... I am a god... How can this... This is wrong... this is not how things were meant to be...
  • The Woman Behind the Man: To the Upstarts, later to Madelyne Pryor and later still to Wither.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Does this to Bard, and it's implied she would've done it to Wither and possibly the entire Inner Circle had she lived long enough.


The Sentinels

One of the most recognizable non-mutant characters in the X-men's corner of the Marvel Universe, Sentinels are the result of a government initiative to combat the growing mutant threat. These huge robots are equipped with gene-level scanning devices enabling them to identify any mutants, and the armor and weaponry to (theoretically) detain or kill them once found. Recurrently decommissioned as mutant rights advance or the Sentinels go wrong, only to be recommissioned as new and improved versions are built or more mutant-related hate builds up. Sentinels are frequently depicted as being bound to a "super Sentinel" called Master Mold, which is often instrumental in the temporary discrediting of the Sentinel Program.

  • Adaptive Ability: The Mark-II Sentinels could adapt to their enemies and their powers.
  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Most Sentinels don't really have the AI to actually go wrong and loyally follow orders. The problem is, they tend to be portrayed taking their commands from Master Mold, who does have the AI to go rogue — for example, planning to capture a senator and replace his brain with a computer before then enslaving all humanity.
  • Artificial Stupidity: In stories and adaptations where they lean more on the Starter Villain end of the scale.
  • The Assimilator: The Prime Sentinels, ordinary humans merged with Sentinel tech.
    • Cybernetics Eat Your Soul: It is possible to restore a Prime Sentinel's free will, but even for Magneto and Professor X, it's very difficult.
  • Bad Future: Days of Future Past, anyone? Any time the Sentinels appear in an adaptation, this story is bound to occur in some form.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: When Sentinels or Master Mold go wrong, often they do so with the statement that it is illogical to protect humans from mutants because "humans are mutants" — all humans have unique genetic codes.
  • The Computer Is Your Friend: In some alternate timelines, the Sentinels decide that they need to take over humankind to effectively neutralize mutants.
  • Deceptively Human Robots: Steven Lang's (No relation) X-Sentinels, which looked like the original '60s era X-Men and even had their powers. It took Wolverine's senses to suss them out.
  • Hero Killer: Numerous Sentinels in numerous futures, but a special shout-out goes to the Elite Mook Sentinel seen in New Mutants #48: it is identified as the Sentinel that killed Captain America, and has even been painted to resemble him.
  • Hive Queen: Master Mold is this; it has the intelligence and capabilities to control all Sentinels, and is actually a walking Sentinel-production factory, creating them from internal production machinery.
  • Humongous Mecha:
    • Autonomous version, usually, but at least one miniseries focused on Sentinel Squad O*N*E, an attempt to redeem the Sentinel Project by stripping out the independent AI and turning them into piloted mecha. It worked, for a while.
    • In terms of size, Master Mold takes this Up to Eleven: it's roughly as big compared to a Sentinel as a Sentinel is to a human.
  • I Know Mortal Kombat: Apparently this can be used against them as Gwen Poole notices that their attack patterns mirror those from their video game appearances. Anyone familiar with the games can abuse the same openings their attack patterns leave them in real life.
  • The Kid with the Remote Control:
    • A 2003 miniseries, aptly entitled Sentinel, focused on Midwestern American teen Juston Seyfert and his adventures after finding and repairing a damaged Sentinel.
    • Any member of the Trask family automatically counts as this too, since Bolivar programmed a directive into them to obey and preserve all members of his bloodline. Unless, of course, they're a Mutant, as Larry Trask finds out.
  • Killer Robots: Particularly towards mutants, but depending on the story they can be a threat to humans too.
  • Made of Plasticine: The Project: Armageddon Sentinels were pathetically easy to destroy. The only reason they managed to keep the X-Men they'd caught captive at all was because they were operating from a space station.
  • Mecha-Mooks: This may be why the Sentinels have appeared in every animated depiction of the X-men-verse; they're intimidating enough to make good enemies, but they can be slaughtered on-screen without any editor hassles.
  • Mook Maker: Their usual leader Master Mold, a "super Sentinel" that is an autonomous Sentinel factory.
  • Power Creep, Power Seep: Somewhat justified by multiple generations (at least ten) of the Sentinel line, but these are still Mecha-Mooks that switch from grinding the whole world under their metal heels in more than one Bad Future to generic cannon fodder Mooks that even inexperienced X-Men can carve through like butter. In general, Sentinels tend to be exactly as strong or as weak as the storyline they're in requires them to be.
  • Purple Is Powerful: The very first Sentinels had purple shells, and that's held true for most of them since, though there have been some variations over the years like the Mark V Sentinels, which were blue instead.
  • Robo Speak: Usually, but the Project: Armageddon ones were remarkably chatty.
  • Robot Buddy: The Sentinel rebuilt and befriended by the aforementioned Juston Seyfert.
  • Robot Girl: The Omega Prime Sentinel Karima Shapandar, who joins the X-Men for a time after being released from her programming.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Sentinel Squad O*N*E and the X-Men didn't get along. Probably because the X-Men were about as happy as you'd expect to have their movement monitored and controlled by giant sized versions of things that had previously tried to kill them.
  • Terminator Impersonator: Prime Sentinels are a model of Sentinel which are humans that underwent an Unwilling Roboticization and were then released to live ordinary lives until they come into contact with a Mutant. After activation, the cyborgs will attempt to terminate the mutant with extreme force, often undergoing more and more of a Robotic Reveal until their entire bodies have transformed into a human-sized Sentinel in order to annihilate their target. Often, their target is a mutant that is either closeted or unaware that they're a mutant and thus an X-Man is sent to protect them and get them to safety.
  • They Look Like Us Now: The 90s Zero Tolerance crossover introduced the "Omega Prime" model Sentinel which initially appeared to be a line of Deceptively Human Robots but were soon revealed to be a type of Cyborg instead. They were designed to be sleeper agents capable of blending into heavily-populated cities to hunt for mutants.
  • Turned Against Their Masters: In a number of alternate futures they turn against humans en masse, and certain Sentinels like Master Mold do this even in the normal timeline.
  • The Virus: The Turn of the Millennium introduced the "Nano-Sentinels" which as you might have guessed from the name are a line of Nanomachines that function as this.
  • Unwilling Roboticisation:
    • As the X-Men learned to their horror after their encounter with the Omega Prime Sentinel Karima Shapandar. While a few units from that line were fanatics who had volunteered willingly, most were ordinary humans who had been kidnapped and transformed against their will.
    • Happened to the pilots of Sentinel Squad O*N*E, thanks to Bishop and a techno-organic virus. In seconds, the pilots were killed and turned into mini-Sentinels.
  • Would Be Rude to Say "Genocide": What they did to Genosha. Several million mutants died in less than an hour.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: The original Sentinels turned on Trask pretty quickly, and demanded he manufacture more Sentinels, making it clear they'd kill him the minute he stopped complying.

    Shadow King 

The Shadow King

Amahl Farouk (maybe)
Debut: Uncanny X-Men #117 (1979)

Ah, such heroic sentiments. I like that — but this is my game, my parlor, my rules. Here the house always wins!

A vastly powerful psychic entity that likes to possess people and bring out their darker emotions. Professor X met him as Egyptian crimelord Amahl Farouk, and killed his human body in a psychic-showdown. Farouk was the first evil mutant Xavier encountered, prompting him to form the X-Men. However, it has been since revealed that the Shadow King might have existed long before possessing Farouk.

An adaptational counterpart of the Shadow King appears as the Big Bad of the 2017 television series Legion. Tropes and ideas from his character were also borrowed from for the adaptational counterpart of Apocalypse from the 2016 film X-Men: Apocalypse.

  • Aborted Arc: The original plan for the Shadow King under Chris Claremont not only had him as the Final Boss for the X-Men as a whole, but actually killing Professor X in their final battle, which would have resulted in Magneto becoming the permanent new leader of the X-Men. This plot was shelved when Claremont left the X-books, and to this day the Shadow King has never reached for any goal so grandiose, instead remaining firmly in C-list villain territory.
  • Adaptational Badass: Both of the adaptations of the Shadow King mentioned above are this compared to the original.
  • Always a Bigger Fish: During X-Men: Worlds Apart Storm lured him into a trap set by herself and Bast the Panther God, who promptly devours him.
  • Arch-Enemy: To Storm. He employed her as a thief when she was a child, but was never able to completely bend her to his will. Her strength of character makes her his favorite target.
    • He considers Professor X to be his archenemy, owing to Chuck dealing him a pretty decisive defeat in their first encounter.
  • As Long as There is Evil: Shadow King fits this trope to the letter, especially following the retcon that he might be an ancient demonic being, and not the psychic remains of an evil mutant.
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: Frequently does this with telepaths.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: The Shadow King considers himself the Final Boss to Charles Xavier and the X-Men as a whole, but falls a little short of that goal. He does not play well with others, doing villain team-ups only when forced into them, and power-wise he's never quite been able to equal his hated rival.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: Being one of the older X-villains, he snuggles in this trope like a security blanket. Excepting Professor X, for whom It's Personal between him and Farouk, the Shadow King never tries to outright kill his targets, preferring instead to break them or gloat at them. Unsurprisingly, the heroes turn the tide on him every time, only for him to come back the next time none the wiser.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: Would you really except any less from someone who calls themselves the Shadow King?
  • The Corrupter: Prides himself on being this, though he's less about tempting his victims to evil and more about twisting their minds through brute telepathic force until they're corrupt enough for his taste.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: The reason behind his long string of defeats. Despite being theoretically a telepath in the same league as Professor X, the Shadow King is much more interested in tormenting his targets than simply defeating them, and while he's not weak, he definitely leans more towards finesse than force. Lesser telepaths like Psylocke have still managed to take him down because they go for the jugular while he plays around, and he's never dared to challenge the stronger villain telepaths like Exodus or Madelyne Pryor, likely knowing they'd crush him like a roach.
  • Dark Is Evil: His astral form is frequently depicted as a sinister shadowy being and Farouk is evil as the day is long.
  • Embodiment of Vice: To the point of warping and distorting any physical body he inhabits; see Villainous Glutton below.
  • Evil Counterpart: To Professor X.
  • Evil Foreigner: His original form and/or host body of Amahl Farouk was Egyptian.
  • Eviler Than Thou: Subjected to this by Apocalypse.
  • Fat Bastard: Farouk has no physical body, but his Villainous Glutton tendencies end up in any body he inhabits inevitably degrading to this state.
  • Fate Worse than Death: Being possessed by him. As revealed by Karma, victims are completely aware the whole time, unable to stop Farouk from his systematic degradation of their bodies and, indeed, are suffering from ceaseless psychological torture in their own heads as Farouk works to make them empty shells. The harder a victim fights back, the more Farouk enjoys it and the longer he draws out their suffering.
  • Gender Bender: Happily possessed Karma for months in New Mutants and has frequent designs on doing this to Storm too.
  • God Guise: At one point he posed as Anansi, one of the Orisha of African folklore.
  • I Have You Now, My Pretty: Clearly this is kind of Farouk's shtick.
    • Really likes to torment Storm. One miniseries, Worlds Apart, revolved around him trying to break her to his will.
    • He also tried turning Psylocke and Rogue into his "Shadow Queens" at separate times.
    • Also Karma in New Mutants.
    • And Val Cooper in the lead-in to the Muir Island Saga.
  • Living Shadow: If the Shadow King ever had an original body, he lost that long ago.
  • The Man Behind the Man: He stunted Destiny's ability to see the future, manipulated Legion into murdering her decades later, and was heavily implied to be the force behind Magneto's abrupt Face–Heel Turn in the early 90s.
  • More Than Mind Control: His preferred method of turning people against each other is by awakening the real doubts and insecurities in their minds, making them that much harder to get through to.
  • Multiple-Choice Past: Some stories have portrayed the Shadow King as a centuries-old mutant who survived the years by jumping from body to body and eventually possessed Amahl Farouk. In others, he was merely born Amahl Farouk and fabricated a grander backstory for himself.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: You don't get much more Obviously Evil than the Shadow King.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: He physically resembles and shares the same name as King Farouk of Egypt
  • Piggybacking on Hitler: During the 1930s he worked for two of Hitler's most trusted agents, one of them being the future Baron Strucker.
  • Psychic Powers: Strong enough to rival, though not defeat, Professor X.
    • Astral Projection: As a being that exists purely on the astral plane, this is his default method of combat.
    • Demonic Possession: Doubles with Grand Theft Me; Farouk can only act in the physical world by taking control of a human host.
    • Emotion Control: Put it this way, Farouk has sometimes been known to spread a Hate Plague just by being around.
    • Mind Manipulation: He can do it in several ways.
    • People Puppets: Tends to reduce everyone in his immediate vicinity to this.
    • Slave Mooks: He often brainwashes whatever local populace is in his immediate vicinity, resulting in the heroes having to fight a horde of innocent bystanders.
    • Telepathy: Has telepathic powers on par with those of Professor X.
  • Sadist: As mentioned above, he's the very definition of a psychic sadist. He won't torture your body, but he'll Mind Rape you with glee until you're an Empty Shell.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: He's often sealed away into various things. The animated series had him sealed into a mountain somehow, and in the Age of Apocalypse Apoc literally contained his essence inside of a small can with a sealed tube on top.
  • Sealed Inside a Person-Shaped Can: For awhile he was trapped inside Psylocke's mind. This prevented her from using her telepathic powers.
  • Staying Alive: He has near-Complete Immortality, boasting at one point that he can revive himself off one dark thought in one man's heart. See As Long as There is Evil above.
  • Starter Villain: He was literally this for Charles Xavier, being the first evil mutant Chuck ever met. The encounter was what convinced him of the necessity of a team like the X-Men.
  • Trapped in Another World: During the House of M storyline the Shadow King was not included as part of the Scarlet Witch's ideal world, but instead shunted off to another dimension. After the reality warp was undone he made his way back to the current one.
  • Uniqueness Value: Like Mojo above, it's been asserted that there's only one Shadow King within the Marvel Multiverse; the ones we've seen in realities besides Earth-616 are supposedly all the same entity manifesting in different ways or extensions of it in some kind of Hive Mind scenario.
  • Villainous Glutton: When he claims a human host for an extended period of time, he becomes addicted to eating, and his host becomes morbidly obese as a result.
  • Villains Act, Heroes React: Fighting him was what gave Professor X the idea to form the X-Men in the first place. Ironically, if this very loathsome villain didn't exist, neither would the X-Men.
  • We Can Rule Together: Gives Professor X this speech upon their first meeting; presumably it wasn't so cliche back then.
  • Your Worst Nightmare: Clearly wants to be this for everyone and everything in his way.

    Shinobi Shaw 

Shinobi Shaw
AKA: Black King (II)
Debut: X-Factor #67 (1991)

I may act like an idiot, but do I look like one?

The disaffected son of classic X-villain Sebastian Shaw, Shinobi debuted during the 90s as a member of the Upstarts, a gang of wealthy and powerful young mutants that kill other mutants for points. As The Un-Favourite to his hard-nosed father, Shinobi wasted no time in bumping him off (He failed, but Sebastian vanished for seven years and bore a prominent facial scar upon his return.) and taking his place as Black King of the Hellfire Club. Unfortunately, Shinobi didn't really have much of a plan for... well, anything beyond getting rid of his father, so after whittling away a good few years on offscreen orgies, he was written out as going into hiding, and even more jarringly, Killed Off for Real offscreen.

He appears as a Boss in Wolverine: Adamantium Rage and X-Men: GamesMaster's Legacy.

  • Abusive Parents: His dad was apparently quite the dick to him in his youth, leading him to become a firm example of Antagonistic Offspring.
  • Adaptational Villainy: In Wolverine: Adamantium Rage Shinobi's in-game bio describes him as a man who "uses his cruel cunning and total lack of mercy in his endless quest to strike down the X-Men, and Wolverine in particular". As anyone familiar with him knows, the only thing Shinobi's ever strove to 'strike down' in canon was a bottle of wine.
  • All Your Powers Combined: He tells Vance Astrovik that the prize for the Upstarts competition is the combined powers of all the other Upstarts, implying that this is what he wants most as all the Upstarts believed the prize was something different.
  • Alliterative Name: There aren't many good reasons to name your kid Shinobi, but at least it makes his full name into this.
  • Back from the Dead: He and his possible real father Harry Leland were both resurrected by Selene's transmode virus during Necrosha. Their present status is unclear.
  • Badass Longcoat: Wears one from time to time. Being who he is, there's no way he isn't intentionally trying to invoke this trope.
  • Cavalier Competitor: An interesting example. Despite very much wanting the prize of winning the Upstarts competition (whatever it may have been), Shinobi doesn't seem nearly so bent on it as his fellow competitors, even offering Trevor Fitzroy the assistance of his Sentinels when he's in the lead. He seems to treat the whole affair as just an exotic way to make new friends, which is pretty appropriate given his Friendless Background.
  • Chess Motifs: Takes his father's title of Black King; he's often referred to on websites as 'Black King II', but this is just to differentiate him from Shaw, and he was only called just 'Black King' in-universe.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: ... kind of? Shinobi comes off as way too young (not to mention too dumb) to be one of these, yet somehow he manages to orchestrate a hostile corporate takeover that completely swipes Shaw Industries out from under his father's thumb. Might count as a case of Hidden Depths.
  • Depraved Bisexual: The very first panel he appears in shows him surrounded by a harem of shirtless and nubile young men and women. Fellow Upstart Trevor Fitzroy wastes no time in making jabs at him for his 'proclivities', just in case the harem image was too subtle.
  • Didn't Think This Through: His plan to bump off his father. While it was originally meant to be permanent, in retrospect Sebastian's return seems inevitable. Of all the ways to assassinate a mutant with Energy Absorption powers, did Shinobi really think a bomb would work? If he'd just opted for poison, he'd probably still be drinking and whoring it up in the X-books to this very day...
  • Dirty Coward: Despite theoretically being able to use his powers to duke it out with the heroes as a mini-Colossus, Shinobi used them pretty much for one thing and one thing only — running away.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: Was assassinated by his father at some point between 2004 and 2010's Necrosha story arc.
  • Drugs Are Bad: Never stated explicitly, the nineties not quite being ready for that yet, but Shinobi is pretty firmly coded as an enthusiastic user of recreational drugs.
  • Enemy Mine: There's a brief, almost Aborted Arc, where he tries to recruit Vance Astrovik aka Justice of the New Warriors to the Hellfire Club.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Shinobi talks Vance into kidnapping his own girlfriend, with the implied threat that if he doesn't that the other Upstarts will take her and won't be as gentle about it.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: A strange example. Shinobi's more immature than outright evil, but his loveless childhood left him pretty much incapable of understanding or appreciating the familial bonds that unite the X-Men together.
  • Friendless Background: Overlapping with Lonely Rich Kid; Warren Worthington/Archangel reveals at one point he was pretty much Shinobi's only childhood friend, and even then they weren't particularly close.
  • Freudian Excuse: Sebastian apparently looked down on his son for being too effeminate and weak. This probably played a role in Shinobi's attempts to kill him.
  • Gratuitous Japanese: You'd expect this from a character named Shinobi, but it's thankfully averted.
  • Hanlon's Razor: Keep it handy when reading anything this guy appears in. You'll need it.
  • Harmless Villain: Borderline. Shinobi can theoretically give you a heart attack, but he's much more likely to just hire someone to beat you up... and that's if he even cares enough to bother, which he usually doesn't. Most villains will dispose of an underling who's betrayed him, but his response when he finds out Tessa sold him out to the X-Men? Pout. No rages, no threats, he literally sulks like a child.
  • The Hedonist: Differs from most Hellfire alumni in that his hedonism is largely just a way of coping with his Freudian Excuse.
  • Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: He was a founding member of the Upstarts, a Hellfire Club offshoot of rich young mutants that amuse themselves by hunting other mutants for points.
  • I Hate You Mutant Dad: To the point of killing his father in his very first appearance. Or attempting to, at least.
  • Idle Rich: Much more so than his father, or really anyone else in the Hellfire Club. The whole reason why Shinobi's tenure as Black King was so brief was because he really didn't do much of anything after gaining that rank, participating in only a handful of limpwristed efforts to recruit various X-Men to the Club.
  • In the Blood: His mutant abilities, obviously, though where they came from is open to debate.
  • Inadequate Inheritor: His father certainly feels this way, and judging from Shinobi's track record as Black King, the elder Shaw is entirely correct in this belief.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Not to many, as most people can't see past the whole 'born with a silver spoon in his mouth' thing, but aside from the bed of cash he cries (and screws) himself to sleep on Shinobi's definitely got at least a few sympathetic moments. It helps that he's barely ever outright trying to hurt or destroy the X-Men either, unlike many villains, and actually tries pulling We Can Rule Together more than anything else.
  • Intangibility: Has the mutant ability of density control, making him a sort of Evil Counterpart to Shadowcat. It also offers him some limited degree of Nigh-Invulnerability, at least enough to where he can take a crowbar to the chin and not flinch.
  • It Amused Me: If you're looking for a high-minded villain, look elsewhere. Shinobi does what he does primarily out of boredom and/or whimsy, and really has no overarching plan beyond this. Demonstrated nicely when he usurps his father as Black King of the Hellfire Club, acquiring obscene wealth and the connections to be a potential global mover, only to spend years doing exactly what he was doing in that very first panel he showed up in — bedding harlots and drinking with thieves.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Sebastian's insulting Shinobi as a pathetic, whining nobody unworthy to inherit Sebastian's power was cruel and abusive...and also correct.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: Probably the one time he doesn't come off as Rich in Dollars, Poor in Sense is when X-Force kicks in his door during the Younghunt. Faced with a band of gun-toting and pissed off mutants, he immediately washes his hands of the entire Upstarts affair and flounces off pretty much the second they let him.
  • Luke, I Might Be Your Father: It's implied that Harry Leland, the Black Bishop of the Hellfire Club, might be his biological father. Indeed, Shinobi's mutant powers are similar to Leland's (density control) and very unlike Sebastian's powers.
  • Mecha-Mooks: After usurping control of Shaw Industries from his father Shinobi gathered a cadre of Sentinels for his own personal use.
  • Mundane Utility: He openly admits he can use his Intangible Man powers for peeping on girls (not that he needs to with his cash)
  • Non-Action Big Bad: Despite being a mutant, Shinobi has no interest in all in superhero brawls and whenever one breaks out he inevitably makes a beeline for the nearest exit.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Possibly. He certainly plays the Depraved Bisexual angle to the hilt, seemingly not carrying who might see him carrying on in his numerous orgies. The fact that said people might then dismiss him as a dumb kid in over his head might be an explanation for how he was able to pull off his hostile takeover of Shaw Industries without his dad ever once catching wind of it until it was too late.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Though largely an idiot, Shinobi is notable for being one of the few comic book villains who isn't interested in dragging things into fisticuffs. He'd much rather just talk or buy his way out of trouble, and when it's inevitable, tends to rely on Mooks rather than fight himself.
  • Put on a Bus to Hell: A very jarring example. With virtually no buildup or explanation, Shinobi just suddenly... vanished, right around the time his father started re-emerging as a villain. The timing probably wasn't a coincidence, but it took nearly a decade for Marvel to just come out and admit they'd Dropped a Bridge on Him.
  • Rich Idiot with No Day Job: Unlike many examples of the trope, he's not using it to conceal some hidden persona or grand scheme — that's exactly what he is.
  • Rich in Dollars, Poor in Sense: Played for comedy at one point, where Shinobi's underling (and his father's former assistant) Tessa calls the X-Men on him. Not because he's crossed any moral lines or anything, oh no... she calls them because she fears Shinobi's leadership is so inept that he'll steer the Hellfire Club into ruin out of sheer incompetence.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: Let's face it, without the Shaw fortune funding him Shinobi probably would've ended up either in prison or as one of those annoying college kids always going on about legalizing marijuana.
  • Attempted Self-Made Orphan
  • Signature Move: Being a villain, he uses his intangibility powers to pull off 'heart squeezing' as his trademark killing move.
  • Spoiled Brat: Of a sort. While he had every material thing he could ever want, Shinobi was routinely subjected to ritualistic emotional abuse by his father.
  • Teenage Wasteland: Beneath all the obscene wealth Shinobi is just another disaffected teen with daddy issues.
  • Troll: To Wolverine in Adamantium Rage. Somehow Logan gets it in his head that Shinobi (of all people) is responsible for his latest amnesia troubles. Rather than just taking the easy way out and correcting him, Shinobi eggs him on, to the point where Wolverine rips and tears his way through the entirety of the Hellfire Club's staff, including Shinobi's cyborg butler, all just to wipe that smug smirk off his face.
  • Turn Out Like His Father: Averted, actually. Despite usurping his father's position as Black King, Shinobi doesn't actually do anything with that power and is killed offscreen, a horribly ignomious fate for a character with his pedigree.
  • The Un-Favourite: Someone at Marvel must have really hated this guy. Not only was he written out of the story offscreen, he was killed offscreen! Killed Off for Real too, no less.
    • He was also very much the in-universe Unfavorite of his father, who pretty clearly considered him an unworthy successor.
  • Vehicular Assault: Not in the comics, but in the Sega Genesis game Wolverine: Adamantium Rage he hops into the cockpit of a Mini-Mecha-sized tank thing to do battle with Wolverine.
  • Villains Out Shopping: Here's a hint: when your villain spends more time partying and getting wasted than he does committing any actual villainy, it's probably a sign you don't have the makings of a master Big Bad on your hands.
  • We Can Rule Together: He was fairly fond of this, offering high-level Hellfire Club ranks to Archangel and Psylocke, and later Storm as well.
  • Yakuza: Has dealings with them and it's even possible they were the power behind his hostile takeover of Shaw Industries.

    Siena Blaze 

Siena Blaze
Debut: Uncanny X-Men Annual #17 (1993)

Ha! I'm not better, Cyclops. I'm the worst. "They" made me who I am today. And now, they'll just have to... DEAL WITH IT!

A reckless young mutant anarchist and the last recruit to the thrill-seeking Upstarts. In her debut appearance she almost killed three of the most powerful X-Men, and she remained a formidable foe for as long as the Upstarts were active. After the Gamesmaster disbanded the group she was shunted into The Ultraverse, where she joined the Exiles (no, not those Exiles) and found herself going through a Heel–Face Turn. She might have become a full-fledged hero, but unfortunately nobody could figure out what to do with her post-Ultraverse and she vanished for several years before being Killed Off for Real in the mutant concentration camp Neverland.

She appears as a Boss in the 1995 Game Gear game X-Men: GamesMaster's Legacy.

  • Back from the Dead: She was one of the many dead mutants who were resurrected by Selene's transmode virus during the 2009 Necrosha story and was seen fighting Namor on Utopia. Her present status is unclear.
  • Bad Powers, Bad People: As Professor X himself states on one of Siena's trading card bios: "Never before have I met a mutant whose power is so solely, wantonly and completely destructive."
  • Combat Pragmatist: In her first appearance she shoots down a plane with Professor X, Cyclops and Storm inside while the plane is over the Arctic. Even if they end up surviving (which they do), they then have to contend with the hostile arctic weather in addition to her. She, on the other hand, never exhibits any discomfort with the weather, even after being frozen inside a glacier by Storm, implying that her powers protect her from the environment somehow.
  • Combo Platter Powers: Has the ability to manipulate electromagnetic fields, which is in functionality a form of of Lightning Can Do Anything. She has used it to the following effects:
    • Blow You Away: In GamesMaster's Legacy she attacks the player character with whirling tornadoes.
    • Flight: Achieves this by surrounding herself with an aura of magnetic energy of equal polarity to the Earth's geomagnetic field, causing the Earth to repel her upwards.
    • Nigh-Invulnerability: Through unexplained means she was capable of rendering herself tough enough to tank an optic blast from Cyclops and a compact hurricane from Storm simultaneously.
    • Shock and Awe: Fires deadly force blasts of electromagnetic energy. Just one of these blasts was capable of bringing down the Blackbird.
    • Super Senses: She can sense both people and objects that effect the Earth's EM field, even teleporters like Nightcrawler. Sensing teleporters in particular allows her to perform a:
    • Tele-Frag: By disrupting the EM field in a teleporter's vicinity, she can redirect where they will rematerialize. When she used this on Nightcrawler she forced him to rematerialize into solid rock.
    • Teleportation: "Rides" the Earth's EM field to teleport in a fashion similar to Nightcrawler.
    • Weather Manipulation: An extremely nasty side effect of her powers and the reason for her being declared Too Powerful to Live. She causes localized ecological disasters every time she uses her powers.
  • Cool Shades: Almost always seen sporting a pair of giant red 90s shades.
  • Dark Action Girl: Served this role in the Upstarts.
  • Distaff Counterpart: Though Siena herself turned out to be a very minor character, much of her personality was borrowed from for the reimagined version of Pyro seen in the X-Men Film Series, to the point where that character can accurately be called a Composite Character of the actual Pyro and Siena.
  • Dropped A Bridge On Her: Unceremoniously killed off in the pages of Weapon X after several years of being MIA without any fanfare at all.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: She calls Mr. Sinister a "real creep" when strong-armed by the Gamesmaster into working for him.
  • Foreshadowing: Trevor Fitzroy convinces her to join him by giving her a brief glimpse of her future self, who is shown to be an aged prisoner on a mutant transport train. Later the present-day Siena was herself captured by Weapon X.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Twice, once in a What If? story where she joins the X-Men of a Bad Future and then when the main universe Siena joined the Ultraverse Exiles.
  • Humans Are Bastards: Expresses some measure of bitterness about "regular people" when Cyclops exhorts her to "be better", leading to her profile quote above.
  • More Deadly Than the Male: It is strongly implied that Siena was the most powerful member of the Upstarts, despite being the youngest and least experienced of them. Even their leader Gamesmaster, who is himself a mutant omnipath with telepathy so advanced he is constantly connected to every mind on Earth, was once stated to be "frightened of the genie he let out of its bottle."
  • Omnicidal Maniac: Implicitly implied with the revelation that Siena risks causing permanent damage to Earth's electromagnetic field every time she uses her powers and she just keeps on using them anyway.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: As a result of her high power level combined with her inexperience, Siena's mutant ability tears scars into the Earth's electromagnetic field every time she uses it.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: Starts off as a particularly nasty one, but after some character development as a member of the Exiles she appeared to be growing out of it.
  • Run for the Border: When she is first found by Trevor Fitzroy she is on the run with a human bank robber. They are actually in the middle of a shootout with the police when Fitzroy shows up.
  • Teens Are Monsters: Or extremely reckless and anarchistic villains, in her case.
  • Teenage Wasteland: Her later character development would seem to indicate Siena was more disaffected and immature than out-and-out evil.
  • Spanner in the Works: The mad mutant Stryfe feared Siena might become this for his plans, as seen in her entry in Stryfe's Strike Files. Ironically Stryfe died before Siena was even formally introduced to readers.
  • Too Powerful to Live: Outright stated in her early appearances due to her power wreaking havoc on the Earth's electromagnetic field with every use.



Rita Wayward
Debut: Longshot #1 (1985)

Hers is a name that men whisper as she kills them.

One of the most loyal warrior-slaves of Mojo, Spiral is his Dragon and an essential part of his operations. In her first appearance, she was sent to retrieve Longshot. She later had a stint as a member of Freedom Force, the US government's version of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. In the Shattershot storyline, it turned out she was Rita Ricochet (Longshot's former friend and lover) all along, brainwashed into becoming Spiral by Mojo and her future self.

She is a recurring playable character in the Marvel VS Capcom series.

  • Ascended Extra: Art Adams designed her as just another of Mojo's lackeys pursuing Longshot, but Ann Nocenti liked the look of her and decided to give her a more prominent role.
  • Ax-Crazy: She hides it well behind her snark, but Spiral is completely off the deep end.
  • The Baroness: Tends to take this role in storyline where she strikes out on her own.
  • Berserk Button: Has a major grudge against the Mojoworld scientist Arize, who invented the technology that empowered the Spineless Ones. She can also get this way at times regarding Longshot, but when it comes to Arize, well...
  • Cybernetics Eat Your Soul: Subverted, surprisingly enough. Yes, she was roboticized by Mojo, and probably unwillingly too. But it was only a small part of how Mojo was able to turn her so completely insane.
  • Cyborg: Three of her arms are at least partially robotic.
  • Dark Action Girl: One of the first prominent female X-villains.
  • Deadpan Snarker: She and Major Domo are the only Mojo minions who dare mouth off to their boss.
  • The Dragon: Mojo may be strong, but he's also nearly immobile, counting on the acrobatics and swordplay of Spiral to keep his enemies at bay.
  • Driven to Madness: A major case of Break the Cutie — when Mojo captures Ricochet Rita, the first thing he does is tie her to the prow of the interdimensional airship he was using to get around at the time. Then he forces her eyes open so that she has to watch the Wildways. Predictably, this causes her to Go Mad from the Revelation.
  • Dual Wielding: Three times over!
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Spiral recently became the caretaker of a young mutant girl named Ginny. She seems to be one of the few people Spiral genuinely cares about at this point.
  • Evil Sorcerer: To the point where when Doctor Strange stepped down as Sorcerer Supreme of the entire Marvel Universe, she was mentioned as a contender for the job.
    • Magic Dance: She dances to cast her more complicated spells.
    • Magic Knight: A sorceress and technological genius as well as an expert hand-to-hand (-to-hand-to-hand) combatant.
    • Teleportation: This is her primary utility to Mojo — the bloat can defend himself fairly well, but he is completely reliant on Spiral's spellcasting to traverse between dimensions.
    • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Not seen much in the comics, but in the fighting game X-Men: Children of the Atom this is the basis of her ultimate super. She runs up, grabs the player character and gives them a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown while simultaneously morphing into every single playable character in the game.
  • Extradimensional Power Source: She uses the energy of the dimensional crossroads known as "the Wildways" to power her spells.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: The original Longshot mini showed her as being very jealous and resentful of ordinary humans, seeing herself as a freak compared to them. Mojo states outright this is why he gave Spiral her extra arms.
  • Hazy Feel Turn: After being stranded by Mojo one too many times, she decided to settle down and stay out of superhero conflicts.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: Frequently aids the heroes, especially after her Wolverine Publicity became known to the writers. Amusingly enough, she's more than once lent her six hands to the Trope Namer himself.
  • Hollywood Cyborg: Aside from being one of these herself, she has a side hobby of turning other people into them via her Body Shoppe.
  • Hot Chick with a Sword: Six times over!
  • It Amused Me: Her motivation for joining the government team Freedom Force, led by Mystique and consisting mostly of boxed crooks, was never really clear- but it seems to have been mainly "bored and had nothing better to do".
  • Kick the Dog: Shortly after arriving in our reality she rips the shawl off an elderly woman and walks on the poor woman's head while making cracks about her 'pathetic face'.
  • Mad Scientist: In the Mojoverse, she runs the Body Shoppe, where villains (including Lady Deathstrike) get cybernetic makeovers.
  • Made of Iron: Her profiles mention that the transformation Mojo put her through also gave her "hardened skin" which lets her absorb way more punishment than she should be able to take.
  • Meaningful Name: After being brainwashed by Mojo, Ricochet Rita spiraled completely down the rabbit hole of madness.
  • Morality Pet: Shatterstar serves as this to her from time to time.
  • Most Common Superpower: To the point where her first appearance in the animated series has her walking out of a wall of televisions breasts-first.
  • Multi-Armed and Dangerous: She has six arms, three of which are cybernetic replacements.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: Well, more like Swordswoman Sorceress Mutate Cyborg in her particular case.
  • Psycho Ex-Girlfriend: To Longshot. Not by choice, since Mojo messed with her mind.
  • Psycho Supporter: She's Mojo's most effective minion and is totally nuts.
  • Psychotic Smirk: Noticing a theme to these tropes yet?
  • Punch-Clock Villain: She doesn't have any particular grudge against the X-Men, instead just going after them because it's her Mojo-mandated job. She even invokes this trope to a defeated Magneto in X-Men: Children of the Atom.
    Spiral: Sorry, it's my job. Is it my fault I enjoy it?
  • Retcon: Neither Ann Nocenti (who created her) nor Chris Claremont (who popularized her by making her an X-Men antagonist) intended Spiral to be an evil version of Ricochet Rita. This retconned origin story was done by Fabian Nicieza in 1992, seven years after Spiral's first appearance.
  • Reforged into a Minion: She was once one of Longshot's friends, and his lover. Then Mojo drove her insane and turned her into his servant.
  • Refugee from TV Land: Like everyone from Mojoworld, she has a lot of off sayings. She doesn't kill people, she cancels them.
  • Servile Snarker: She's not afraid to snark off at Mojo.
  • Sixth Ranger: For Freedom Force. In keeping with the trope's spirit, she is by far the team's most powerful member.
  • Stable Time Loop: Ultimately, how she came into Mojo's service involved this, as one of the people who helped Rita become Spiral was Spiral herself.
  • Status Quo Is God: She hates her boss and frequently works to undermine him but always goes back to working for him again in the next Mojoworld story.
  • Tragic Villain: She never asked to get driven insane and re-purposed into a deadly enforcer for an evil cosmic entertainment mogul. But she is insane, and dangerous as hell.
  • Unwilling Roboticisation: She does this from time to time to guests of the Body Shoppe and may have been a victim of it herself.
  • Vain Sorceress: Subverted; she uses magic but isn't particularly vain and has no problems at all with getting her many hands dirty.
  • Villainous Friendship: She has a pretty solid relationship with Mystique and her old Freedom Force teammates, though even they know how nuts she is.
  • Weapon of Choice: Swords. Six of them, to be precise.
  • White-Haired Pretty Girl: Not originally one, but became one after her transformation into Spiral.
  • Wolverine Publicity: She's one of the most popular X-Villains, appearing in multiple games and spinoffs.
  • Would Hurt a Child: In her very first appearance, where she's just one of several nameless Mojoworld Mooks who've kidnapped a woman's baby. Her distinctive appearance led to her returning two issues later as a proper villain.
  • The Woman Behind the Man: For anyone who gets a makeover in her Body Shoppe. 'Satisfied clients' include the Hellfire Club mercenaries Cole, Macon and Reese, Lady Deathstrike, and Psylocke (who admittedly wasn't wasn't nearly as satisfied as the others).

    Steven Lang 

Dr. Steven Lang

Debut: X-Men #96 (1975)

A government scientist and the head of Project Armageddon, a secret federal program to investigate the biology of the Marvelverse mutants and assess the potential danger they posed to America. However, Lang's results led him to conclude that the danger was not only very great, but imminent; and when the government shelved his report, he took matters into his own hands and began to prepare for war. As his work progressed, he also came into contact with Bolivar Trask's legacy and his supporters, and used what had survived of his work to re-create the Sentinels. By X-Men #98, he was ready to launch his attack on the X-Men, the nexus of mutant activity in the United States.

An early villain in the Chris Claremont run, and ultimately a rather minor one, but were it not for him, The Dark Phoenix Saga would never have happened. Killed by Jean Grey at the conclusion of his original story arc, though a version of him was later briefly brought back by Bastion as part of his schemes.

  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: Pleads with Jean Grey to save him from his crashing hovercar, after having just tried to murder her and Scott (and we should note, Jean's the one who made it crash).
  • Avenging the Villain: Downplayed. While Lang's main motives are Darwinian, he also considers prior anti-mutant villain Bolivar Trask a heroic martyr he wishes to avenge.
    Dr. Lang: Bolivar Trask knew. He understood the danger. He pointed the way. He tried to stop the mutants, Michael, and they killed him for it, him and his son.
  • Back from the Dead: Via Bastion and the transmode virus.
  • Badass Bookworm: He's a quite better fighter than his background (a nondescript government scientist) would suggest.
  • Berserk Button: When Jean Grey calls him a "sad, pathetic, screwed-up little man", he loses it and slapped her. Bear in mind, her implicitly calling him a Nazi before that just got brushed off.
  • Depending on the Artist: In his original appearances, he looked quite different from the portrait given here, with wavy blond hair, icy blue eyes and harder facial features.
  • Driven to Villainy: Originally, Doctor Lang was simply a mild-mannered civil servant who tried to warn the government of the increasing danger of villainous mutants (such as, for example, Magneto). When no one would listen to him, and the threat appeared to be growing constantly with every passing year, he gradually became more extreme.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: His death at the end of Second Coming isn't even acknowledged by the characters, and can easily be missed if the reader isn't paying attention, as he and Graydon Creed are torn to shreds by the X-Men.
  • Evil Genius: Built robot versions of the original X-Men that basically authentically replicated their powers. Also, somehow himself scraped together the billions of dollars needed to fund his huge anti-mutant organization after the government shut him down.
  • Evil Gloating: Being an older villain, he naturally indulged in this the first chance he got.
  • Evilutionary Biologist: Lang is a biologist, and bases his opposition to the mutants on anthropologist Bolivar Trask's work and socio-Darwinian view of the conflict between humans and mutants. That said, he doesn't perform any inhumane biological experiments, or the like.
  • The Extremist Was Right: In a Fridge Logic sort of way. Some story arcs after his untimely demise, Jean Grey, one of the mutants he was mortally afraid of, did just what he feared, killed some billions and almost destroyed the world. (A later Retcon, which might have realized the Unfortunate Implications but was done primarily for other reasons, changed that version of Jean into a sort of Evil Twin.)
  • Fantastic Racism: Aside from the usual mutant-hating stuff, there's a scene where some of his scientists are examining Wolverine. They're briefly confused by his strange metabolism, and ask just what he is. Lang just states "whatever he is, he sure isn't human." note 
  • For Science!: Averted; while Lang is a scientist, his motives are largely political.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Or from obscure government scientist to Blofeld-scale supervillain, in this case.
  • General Ripper: A borderline case, as Lang himself is a civilian, but he's running a rogue military operation and generally behaves like one of these.
  • Godwin's Law: Jean Grey calls him a Nazi when he explains his motives to her. Then again, in the Marvelverse the Nazis are opposed to mutants ...
  • Hollywood Atheist: Averted, in spite of his being a Social Darwinist, and even a biologist, of all things. While he doesn't wear his religion on his sleeve, he is shown to be a believer.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: As he explains, somewhat sheepishly, to Jean Grey when she asks why he's attacking the X-Men. It's a matter of humanity's survival that the mutants have got to go, so he's just doing his duty making sure they do. The way he explodes when she proceeds to ridicule his views possibly suggests that deep down he's really at least a little uncomfortable with the whole thing, himself.
  • Just Following Orders: Assumed to be doing this by Jean. Actually averted: He is acting quite illegally and contrary to his orders, and willingly takes on that moral burden in order to do what he believes necessary to save the human race.
  • Killed Off for Real: Courtesy of a well-passed angry Jean Grey and Cyclops making him crash his flying machine. Well, more or less. His brain got stolen and used to make a Master Mold Sentinel. Bastion brought him back a few decades later, but the X-Men kill Lang all over again at the end of Second Coming.
  • Knight Templar: Lang is quite convinced of his own rectitude, to the point where he can tell a pretty young co-ed (and crypto-mutant) to her face that she and her race have to die. It's Nothing Personal, just necessary in order for humanity to live.
  • Large Ham: When he feels he needs to announce his plans.
  • Mad Scientist: Initially he's not really mad, just somewhat grandiose and affective. The later versions play it straight, however.
  • Morally Ambiguous Doctorate: A humble government scientist who dived headfirst into the pool of radical supervillainy.
  • Motive Rant: Delivers a pretty lengthy one at the beginning of one issue.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Not Lang himself, but the operation he's running. Its codename? Project Armageddon!
  • Nature Is Not Nice: In an in-universe example, Lang points to humanity's own evolutionary history, and the extinction of the non-sapiens (sub)species, to forecast what will happen if the threat of the mutants is not contained.
  • Necessarily Evil: A product of his Darwinian worldview. In a war of species supremacy, obviously neither side will come off looking very good, but at least the victor will survive.
  • No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: Played with. Lang is able to relaunch the Sentinels program precisely because the Trasks did keep detailed notes on their construction, to which the Federal Government granted him privileged access—But some of the documentation was lost when the X-Men trashed Trask's base, so he and his team had to fill in the resulting blanks with their own kludges, making the new Sentinels somewhat less formidable war machines.
  • Omnidisciplinary Scientist: Like Bolivar Trask, he's not stated as such but by simple virtue of what he does has to have mastered at least three different fields of science. See Renaissance Man below
  • Renaissance Man: Scientific expert in at least three widely separate fields (biology/genetics as well as mechatronics engineering and AI programming). Additionally, a fair pilot and fighter.
  • Replacement Goldfish: To Bolivar Trask, from a narrative standpoint. They're both omnidisciplinary scientists and well-intentioned extremists who veer From Nobody to Nightmare in record time. This is probably the reason why Lang didn't stick around for very long, and was instead replaced by a series of more distinctive anti-mutant villains.
  • Rogue Agent: Originally, Lang was commissioned by the federal government to study the potential of superhuman mutants as a strategic danger to the United States. When his study found that the danger was imminent and the government basically ignored his report, he took matters into his own hands.
  • Science Hero: The villain in his story, obviously, but otherwise he fits the classic stereotype perfectly.
  • The Social Darwinist: The racist type, but subverted. Lang believes that the mutants are a superior species to humanity, at least in the purely biological sense, and that this is precisely why the conspiring mutant supervillains are so dangerous—But he still takes humanity's side in what he considers an evolutionary struggle, standing by the "weaker" race.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": His name is officially spelled Steven Lang, but it is often misspelled both In-Universe and out as Stephen Lang.
  • Troubled Sympathetic Bigot: Downplayed. While Lang never demonstrates any overt remorse for his persecution of the mutants and insists on his own moral rectitude throughout, his angry self-justificatory outbursts when questioned by Colonel Rossi and Jean suggest that he still has some doubts.
  • Villainous Valour: In his initial appearances, he was just a more-or-less ordinary government scientist (albeit fairly Badass by those standards), and wisely did not try to go toe-to-toe with any superheroes when he had a choice. But when the X-Men trashed his Sentinels and military security detachment, he did try to fight them himself as a last resort. It ended badly for him.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: A fairly typical X-Men example. The world-shaking antics and mutant-supremacist ideology of various superpowered evil mutants convinced him that humanity must defend itself forcefully against the mutants in order to survive.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Chillingly, Lang very rarely does anything actually "evil," at least by his own standards — As long as one remembers that non-human mutants are not part of his moral in-group.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Loses it and slaps Jean Grey when she tells him he's full of it — Possibly because her insults hit Too Close To Home.

     Sugar Man 

Sugar Man

No Name Given
Debut: Generation Next #2 (1995)

Must you scream, Nathan? I'm trying to work here.

A depraved mutant from the parallel universe known as the Age of Apocalypse, Sugar Man was one of the many camp bosses, running a gruesome concentration camp where he tormented thousands of slaves, human and mutant alike. His specialty was the study and creation of biological weaponry, and he earned his place in Apocalypse's regime by inventing horrific plagues and epidemics. In a cruel twist of fate, he is one of the few souls to survive the death of that twisted reality and escape to the mainstream universe.

He appears as a Boss in X-Men Legends II: Rise of Apocalypse.

  • Arch-Nemesis: To Nate Grey, who he's quite sensibly afraid of (because Nate is a Physical God and has frequently tried to kill him), taking a certain glee in having the upper-hand in Unfinished Business.
  • Ax-Crazy: A literal example, as he is often depicted in merchandise with An Axe to Grind.
  • Bad Boss: In the Age of Apocalypse he ran the work camps which housed thousands of humans and regularly tormented his slaves.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: He looks, and often acts, quite ridiculous, but he's deceptively dangerous in a physical brawl, he's much smarter than he seems, and he's extremely hard to kill.
  • The Brute: Despite having fairly advanced scientific knowledge, his very physical mutation makes him favor shaking it up with the heroes as one of these.
  • Canon Foreigner/Canon Immigrant: Sugar Man comes from the Age of Apocalypse and has no 616 counterpart.
  • Cephalothorax: Sugarman appears as a rotund torso dominated by a huge, ugly face, with four arms and a single pair of legs.
  • Combo Platter Powers: Has Super Strength; a multipurpose, needle-tipped tongue of intestinal length; More Teeth than the Osmond Family, Super Senses that allow him to smell fear and size-shifting.
  • Dirty Coward: He's more than willing to run for the hills the moment the tide looks to be turned against him.
  • Fluffy the Terrible: Let's be honest; "Sugar Man" doesn't make you think "sadistic plague-engineering cannibal mutant", now does it?
  • For the Evulz: As is generally the case for a willing servant of Apocalypse.
  • For Want of a Nail: When discussing Sugar Man with the Marvel Appendix, creator Scott Lobdell said that the reason the Sugar Man has never had a 616 counterpart is to make readers wonder what changed between the Age of Apocalypse and the regular timeline, if the mainstream Sugar Man died or never manifested or if he's in fact just an ordinary guy someone in the world with the potential to become a nightmarish, concentration camp-running mutant monster.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: While literally every other inhabitant of the Age of Apocalypse has (eventually) been linked to a counterpart in the regular 616 reality, the Sugar Man has not and no mutant has ever been seen that even remotely resembles him.
  • Hero Killer: Killed several members of Generation Next, the Age of Apocalypse analogue to Generation X.
  • Hypercompetent Sidekick: A very unusual example, but the Sugar Man has proved himself to be this over the years, particularly where Genosha is concerned. He allied himself with Cameron Hodge and the Genegineer in secret, and ultimately succeeded where they failed by engineering a stable Genoshan regime (well, as stable as things ever get on Genosha) that supplied him with a regular feed of mutant slaves. Later, when he joined up with Holocaust and the Dark Beast and the Shi'ar came for all of them, he was the only one of the three with the sense to play ball with the Sh'ar, resulting in a cocky (and free) Sugar Man glibly taunting his betters while they lay helpless in Shi'ar custody.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Sugar Man is in fact an Extreme Omnivore who can digest virtually anything as sustenance... but as he's fond of reminding his victims, he has his preferences in food.
  • Killed Off for Real: By Magneto just prior to Secret Wars (2015), with his own lab equipment.
    • Not Quite Dead: He was revealed in Apocalypse Wars to have survived this too, albeit barely.
    • As of 2018 he's dead again, courtesy of X-Man ripping him in two shortly before the Age of X-Man, though given his track record of Staying Alive mutants might want to hold off on the confetti and streamers for a few years... or a nice solid decade, just to be on the safe side.
  • Mad Scientist: Though not the foremost example of this trope, as he admits to Magneto when the latter comes to him for a better dose of MGH.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Retconned into being the mastermind behind Genosha's various anti-mutant tech, as he arrived twenty years in 616's past.
  • Multi-Armed and Dangerous: Has four arms, plus his prehensile tongue.
  • Multipurpose Tongue: Sugar Man uses his long razor-sharp tongue as his weapon.
  • Outside-Context Problem: According to his creator Scott Lobdell, Sugar Man was created specifically to be this, providing a villain for the Age of Apocalypse who wasn't just a new take on an old character. And to this very day, well over 20 years later, no 616 counterpart of him has ever appeared.
  • Plague Master: His primary contributions to Apocalypse's regime were the nightmarish biological weapons he invented.
  • Psycho for Hire: Degenerated into a Mad Scientist variant of this after he was run out of Genosha. When Magneto went to him for an extra strength dose of MGH to power him up, he even bluntly pointed this out, noting that Magneto could have gone to any one of a number of geneticists higher up on the scale than him (the answer was that Magneto wanted quick and dirty).
  • Psychopathic Man Child: The Man-Child part is indicated by his drawings, which look like childish scribbles. The psycho part goes without saying.
  • Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: Implied to have sexually abused a number of his prisoners, including, chillingly, a young Illyana Rasputin.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Occasionally drawn with them.
  • The Renfield: An odd example in that he is perfectly capable of operating on his own, but the minute a stronger leader emerges he starts kissing up, particularly if that leader is Apocalypse or someone connected to him somehow.
  • Size Shifter: He is also able to control his own mass. If he loses mass, the lost mass is shunted off to some unknown location, presumably an extra-dimensional space and he shrinks in size. It's unknown how long it takes him to regain his normal size.
  • Spikes of Villainy: Often, though not always, depicted with spiked shoulderpads.
  • Staying Alive: The most complex yet useful perk of his mutation: whenever Sugar Man is killed, a smaller Sugar Man (a fourth the size of the original's body) emerges from the corpse. He survived a pipe through the head courtesy of Callisto and Omega Sentinel this way.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Magneto tricked him into providing him a 'quick and dirty' boost to his failing mutant powers, using Briar Raleigh as a go-between to make Sugar Man think he had given up his mission of being a mutant Vigilante Man. Unfortunately for Sugar Man, Magneto had done no such thing, and the moment Sugar Man had given him what he wanted Magneto pulped him.
  • Verbal Tic: In early appearances he had a habit of running words together likethis. It was either quietly dropped or quietly forgotten.
  • Villain Team-Up: Fairly fond of teaming up with his fellow Age of Apocalypse expatriates Holocaust and the Dark Beast. He inevitably betrays them just like he betrays everyone else, but hey, it's the thought that counts.

    Trevor Fitzroy 

Trevor Fitzroy
AKA: White Rook, Chronomancer
Debut: Uncanny X-Men #281 (1991)

You have been clumsy, little one. You should have chosen a target more within the reach of your abilities.

A mutant criminal from around approximately eighty years or so into the future, Trevor Fitzroy originally believed himself to be a simple teleporter. Upon discovering his full potential, he used his mutant abilities to escape into the present day, unwittingly bringing his chief pursuer Bishop along with him. He made quite an impact when he first arrived thanks to a particularly excessive Bloodbath Villain Origin, but despite (or perhaps because) of it, he was never featured so prominently again. Despite being Killed Off for Real at the Turn of the Millennium, he's made a handful of appearances since.

He appears as a Boss in two of the three Game Gear X-Men games and as the Final Boss of Wolverine: Adamantium Rage.

  • Aborted Arc: Doubles as a case of What Could Have Been; in early appearances Fitzroy was played up as having a very personal grudge against Emma Frost, though it was clear the present-day Emma had no idea who he was and his grudge was likely against Emma's future self. Then, a few issues later, Fitzroy claims that Bishop's sister Shard killed his mother, with Bishop himself present, and that he is acting to avenge her murder. Neither of these plot points are ever mentioned or elaborated on again.
  • Abnormal Ammo: At one point he demolished a police barricade by using his portals to summon an oncoming prison train from his future.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Like many 90s X-Men villains, Fitzroy got his evil quotient dialed back a few notches for his appearance in the X-Men animated series. There he's more of a Lovable Rogue than a Dangerous Deserter, he ends up betraying the Big Bad Master Mold to help the heroes (albeit to save his own skin), and his mutant powers pointedly do not kill, instead just knocking the victim unconscious for a day or two.
  • Arch-Enemy: To Bishop. Weirdly for comic-book arch enemies, Fitzroy actually debuted an issue before Bishop hit the scene.
  • Bad Boss: To his lackey/manservant Bantam.
    Bantam: What need do you fill in my life?
    Fitzroy: Your need to keep breathing.
  • Bad Powers, Bad People: Having a mutant ability that requires the continuous theft of lifeforce from other beings does not set one up on the road to heroism.
  • Bald of Evil: As the Chronomancer.
  • Bastard Bastard: He's the illegitimate son of Anthony Shaw, descendant of today's Sebastian Shaw, and his resentment over being a bastard was one of the main factors that appears to have pushed him into villainy.
    Fitzroy: In the olden days of kings and queens, 'Fitzroy' was the surname given to royal children born out of wedlock, and my dear daddy considers himself every inch a king. I'm his little joke, see?
  • Beard of Evil: More like a little goatee of the sort normally reserved for evil twins.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Played with — Fitzroy is definitely this in a narrative sense, being used as the Big Bad for his first story arc and then constantly being forced into working for villains with greater power and resources afterward. But in-universe, Fitzroy didn't actually want to be a supervillain on par with Magneto, instead just wanting to escape into the past and carry on his hedonistic lifestyle there.
  • Bloodbath Villain Origin: His primary claim to fame. Busting onto the scene in 1991, Fitzroy racked up an astonishing bodycount with the help of his pet Sentinels — the Reavers, Selene (sort of — she was 'merely' imprisoned and tortured rather than killed, being immortal), and most infamously, the Hellions all met their makers by his hand. To this day, well over twenty years later, the massacre of the Hellions is still remembered for being one of the most senseless wastes of beloved D-list characters ever.
  • Came Back Wrong: An odd Freudian Excuse - years after his death, Fitzroy was featured in a flashback (flash forward?) issue of X-Factor which revealed that he had once been a heroic freedom fighter during the Summers Rebellion. Then he was killed by the baddie Cortex, who knew that Fitzroy was the only rebel whose powers he was vulnerable to. Fellow freedom fighter Layla Miller was able to bring him back, but sans his soul. This is retconned into being the reason why he was such an unrepentant Jerkass in the present day.
  • Chess Motifs: His Hellfire Club rank was 'White Rook' and later in X-Men '92 he would acquire a more direct motif, being introduced toying pensively with a chess piece of his arch-enemy Bishop.
  • Co-Dragons: He and Madelyne Pryor were briefly this to Selene when the Hellfire Club was being reformed. While Madelyne eventually ditched the Club to go find Nate Grey, Fitzroy stuck around a bit longer, finding new patronage with Sebastian Shaw before he finally came to the very late realization that he'd been thinking too small and left to go become a Dimension Lord.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Inflicts this on Selene, locking her in a device that systematically disassembles and reassembles her on a molecular level. If it was being done to anyone else this would've been a Moral Event Horizon, but being that it's Selene, it's almost a case of Kick the Son of a Bitch instead. Almost, because Fitzroy isn't doing it to her out of any sense of justice, but just to show her that Evil Is Not a Toy.
  • Create Your Own Villain: A younger Fitzroy was time-travelling cyborg Cortex's first target when he was set on the rebellion, because of his life-draining abilities. Ruby Summers told Layla to resurrect him, knowing what would happen.
  • Dangerous Deserter: His father forced him to join the X.S.E. in an attempt to be rid of him. But after having had a taste of wealth and power, he wasn't keen to settle for the life of a glorified rent-a-cop and bailed on them a few years later.
  • Dimension Lord: In Bishop: The Last X-Man, where it's revealed he eventually fled the present day to rule a far-flung future where mankind has regressed back to a medieval state.
  • Dirty Coward: Accused of being one by Bishop often, and with his powers mostly being useful for running away, there's some merit to it. Fitzroy himself realizes this and resents it, to the point of invoking it in their final battle.
    Fitzroy: You want to end this too, don't you? Well, come closer then... and see if I run!
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Despite being a fugitive and unrepentant murderer misogyny is apparently crossing the line for him. The first thing he does upon meeting Siena Blaze is kill her boyfriend for going on about how he only hooked up with her because she had the Most Common Superpower.
    Fitzroy: No one likes a sexist, Wallace.
  • Evil Mentor: To Siena Blaze of the Upstarts.
  • Flanderization: In the X-Man title. He was already a Jerkass, did the writers really need to throw in Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil? Apparently Bob Harras and Terry Kavanagh thought so.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: How he was Killed Off for Real. Halfway through a portal that would have allowed him to merge with Time itself, Bishop grabbed his ankle and held him until it closed.
  • The Hedonist: Seems to be a requirement for membership in the Hellfire Club, doesn't it?
  • How Do I Stop Time?: Fitzroy's control of his own powers is decidedly limited at first, and for a good long time after. He can create and maintain multiple portals, but requires the aid of another mutant to 'catalog' them for future use. He has some degree of vulnerability to his Life Drinker powers too, as X-Force once tricked him into draining (and nearly killing) himself. Finally, for the longest time he believed his portals were one-way, and he could only use them to travel back in time, never forward. As we see when he realizes his full potential as the Chronomancer, that was very much not the case.
  • Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: As a member of the Upstarts, this was his motive for villainy shortly after arriving in the present day.
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: A useful side-effect of his mutant powers, though for most of his history he could only access it with the aid of his manservant Bantam, who 'catalogued' his portals to bring back specific things through them (shown examples include a fleet of Sentinels and a prison train).
  • Immortality Seeker: He tells Siena Blaze that the prize for the Upstarts competition is immortality, implying that he is one of these since all the Upstarts believed the prize was something different.
  • Irony: At first, Fitzoy didn't know his portals were time-travel portals. He just opened up portals and tossed Sentinels in willy-nilly.
  • Last-Name Basis: In lieu of a proper mutant codename, he had this. Until he became the Chronomancer he was pretty much exclusively addressed as 'Fitzroy'.
  • Make Way for the New Villains: Due to his Bloodbath Villain Origin detailed above, this guy could well be the Trope Namer.
  • Man of Wealth and Taste: Being a Bastard Bastard of one, this is how he styles himself.
  • Mecha-Mooks: He brings back a squad of future Sentinels with him. Shinobi Shaw's response is to note that they're, "Mmm. Smaller than mine".
  • Mutant: As the descendant of an evil Badass Family of mutants, this is to be expected, though Fitzroy's powers differ markedly from the other known Shaws.
    • Life Drinker: He absorbs life energy through physical contact, but doesn't gain increased strength, power, or youth from the exchange. Instead, he can use it for Time Travel — a fleeting touch allows him to jaunt back a few minutes or so in time, while draining a person until they're dead allows him to go back weeks. And draining multiple people...
    • Liquid Assets: At one point he reveals he can channel the life energy he steals into others as well as himself. He does this to his servant Bantam, restoring him to life after killing him for mouthing off.
    • Teleportation: At their most basic level this is what his powers function as. Because he can use a fleeting touch to jaunt from one place to another with only a minute or so lost or gained in a time, Fitzroy actually spent years believing he was only a simple teleporter. It's not known if he discovered his Time Travel capabilities by accident, and then became a murderer to make use of them, or if he was already a murderer who discovered what he could do after using his mutant powers to kill for the first time.
    • Time Master: As his new codename implies, Fitzroy realized his ultimate potential for this as the Chronomancer. No longer just limited to making portals, he could incapacitate people by trapping them in localized pockets of temporal stasis, speed up or slow down the aging process, and even seemed to have some limited Reality Warper abilities, restoring Bishop's sister Shard from her Energy Being state back into a flesh-and-blood form.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: He is directly responsible for Bishop's presence in the present day, as a portal he opened for his followers to come through spit out the Bish instead.
  • Not in This for Your Revolution: According to X-Factor, the main reason Fitzroy took part in the Summers Rebellion was because he was bored (and dating Ruby Summers).
  • Opportunistic Bastard: Not seen so much in the comics, but very much this in Adamantium Rage. He pops out of nowhere after Wolverine's trashed Shinobi Shaw and reveals that he was hanging around watching the two of them wail on each other so he could finish them both off.
  • Picky People Eater: At one point he gripes about having to drain a flatscan (human) for lifeforce, remarking that they 'leave such an unpleasant aftertaste' compared to mutant victims.
  • Powered Armor: He brought a suit of armor back from the future with him. Probably a good call, seeing how physically fragile he was otherwise.
    Fitzroy: The mutants of this day have a nasty habit of fracturing certain facial features I'm rather partial to...
  • Real Men Wear Pink: In his first appearance, and occasionally thereafter. Merchandise usually changed it to a more aesthetically-pleasing blue.
  • Retcon: A pretty big one some years after his death — originally Fitzroy had been pretty much crooked from day one, but Peter David's X-Factor run established him as a Fallen Hero by showing him as having fought for the good guys during the Summers Rebellion, only to die and get brought back out of sheer necessity.
  • Revenge by Proxy: Possibly his real motivation for murdering the Hellions, if the Aborted Arc between him and Emma is anything to go by.
  • Rogues-Gallery Transplant: Mostly featured as a Bishop villain, he was borrowed to be the final boss for Wolverine: Adamantium Rage.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: The Sensitive Guy to Bishop's Manly Man, during the brief time when they were allies in the X.S.E.
  • Stable Time Loop: He became Siena Blaze's Evil Mentor because in the future they met and her future counterpart told him where to find her in the present. Whether this was a gambit on the part of Future Siena to produce one of these, or to change her future altogether, is unknown as it ended up being another Aborted Arc.
  • The Starscream: Originally, the Upstarts were being manipulated by Selene from afar. When they found out, it was Fitzroy who went after her to teach her that Evil Is Not a Toy.
  • Those Two Guys: He was often seen with his manservant Bantam, a Sycophantic Servant dwarf.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In Bishop: The Last X-Man he came back for one last hurrah as the Chronomancer, having improved his control of his powers exponentially. Indeed, he'd become so powerful that Uatu himself showed up to observe his endgame, something he does only for matters of great cosmic importance.
  • Villain Ball: In Bishop: The Last X-Man. He was literally right there in front of the portal and all he had to do was just walk through it, but he just had to monologue and give Bishop time to catch up to him.
  • Villain Decay: In his first appearance he was a match for the combined force of the Hellions and the X-Men, making use of a variety of useful features of his Powered Armor that were never used again. A few issues later Colossus beat the holy hell out of him single-handed, and it was pretty much all downhill from there.
  • What Measure Is a Mook?: Casually drains a hapless repairman in one story, leading to this exchange:
    Mook: P-Please, don't... I have a wife, kids...
    Fitzroy: They'll just have to wait their turn.
  • Wolverine Claws: Sometimes sported these through his armor, other times he could summon them as crystalline 'gloves'.
  • Would Hurt a Child: The Hellions, obviously. Also one of the first things he does upon being revealed as the Chronomancer is to drain a small group of even younger kids, just in case any readers were wondering if he was still an irredeemable Hate Sink scumbag.
  • You Gotta Have Neon Green Hair: Peter David's X-Factor run revealed it wasn't natural, but instead a sort of Red Right Hand that he'd Came Back Wrong.



Debut: X-Treme X-Men #1

A mysterious man searching for Irene Adler's diaries who ends up clashing with the X-Men because he believes he is fated to die at the hands of one of them.

  • Arc Villain: He is the primary villain in 2001's X-treme X-Men initial story arc.
  • Ambiguously Human: Vargas is not a mutant, but he is also not fully human either. He claims to be the natural response of human evolution against mutantkind
  • Badass Normal: His strength, speed and durability are at peak for human potential, and he manages to curbstomp Rogue and Beast in a fight.
  • BFS: His weapon of choice is a large broadsword.
  • C-List Fodder: While he might have killed a big league X-Man and was a pain in the ass to the X-Treme X-Men, when it comes to the large picture, he doesn't hold a candle to Apocalypse, Mr. Sinister, William Stryker, Cassandra Nova and many other enemies that the heroes faced, who threatened the world on regular basis. And as such he is killed off without ceremony just before Messiah Complex by the Marauders on Mr. Sinister's orders.
  • Dashing Hispanic: A very evil example, being a ruthless warrior of Hispanic background who not only holds his own against superpowered foes, but manages to overwhelm them. He has a tendency to drop Gratuitous Spanish.
  • Gratuitous Spanish: He tends to drop Spanish words a lot and in one infamous instance he uses Betsy's blood to write "pronto" (Spanish for "Done") in the wall above her corpse.
  • Master Swordsman: A pretty dangerous one. His duel with Psylocke was pretty one-sided.
  • Karmic Death: The reason why Sinister had Vargas executed was his possession of Destiny's diaries, as he wanted to silence everyone who had knowledge of the future. So the very object he used to avoid his own death was indirectly responsible for it, in a way he couldn't have predicted.
  • Killed Offscreen: Whether Rogue or the Marauders killed him, either way we never see his body.
  • Hero Killer: The thing he is most famous for is killing Psylocke in a duel. He also very nearly killed Rogue, Gambit and Beast in other encounters.
  • Screw Destiny: The reason why he is a thorn on the X-Men's side: Irene's diaries state he is fated to die at the hands of one, believed to be Rogue. And he wants to avoid that by any means necessary.
  • Transhuman: He claims to be a level of human evolution even higher than mutants, but we never find out if he's telling the truth.
  • Ultimate Life Form: He made the audacious claim that he is the next step in human evolution.
  • The Un-Reveal: During the final battle, Rogue had him pinned to the ground and ready to stab him with his own sword, but she hesitated because she didn't want to fulfill the prophecy and wanted to prove him wrong. It's unknown whether she spared or finished him off since the comic cuts way before that happens and the next panel showed her declaring that "it's over". She evidently spared him, as years later, Mr. Sinister sends his death squads to finish the job.
  • Worthy Opponent: Considered Psylocke to have been this moments before killing her.



Gabriel Summers
AKA: Kid Vulcan, Emperor Vulcan, Majestor
Debut: X-Men: Deadly Genesis #1 (2006)

I claim D'Ken's throne as my own! By right of blood and combat! By right of succession! I name myself Emperor Vulcan, ruler of the Shi'ar Imperium!

A prisoner of Shi'ar experiments concealed on Earth, the experience awakened him to a Omega level mutant, but also drove him mad and filled him with an urge to devastate the Shi'ar, an urge he happily set about fulfilling once he realised how powerful he was. Ironically, he ended up becoming their ruler, even falling in love with the exiled Shi'ar princess, Deathbird, herself an outcast for being a mutant.

  • 0% Approval Rating: His status as leader of the Shi'ar is this at first, since they see him as The Usurper.
    • Villain with Good Publicity: ... but after leading the Imperium to numerous victories and conquests, he achieves a dramatic shift in popular approval.
  • A Child Shall Lead Them: Becomes The Emperor of the Shi'ar through a Klingon Promotion.
  • Antagonistic Offspring: To Corsair.
  • Ax-Crazy: Completely and utterly insane and wildly, violently unstable.
  • Bad Boss: As Emperor of the Shi'ar. Though it's a safe bet he never read Machiavelli, he personified the Machiavellian style of leadership.
  • Big Bad: In most of the stories he's in.
  • Big Damn Villains: Without him the Starjammers, and by extension the rest of the universe, would have been utterly screwed by the Scy'ar Tal.
  • Big, Screwed-Up Family: And how!
  • Cain and Abel: Mainly between him and Havok.
  • The Caligula: In War of Kings, and very deliberately so.
  • Despotism Justifies the Means: In War of Kings this is his objective.
  • Determinator: Definitely something that's in the Summers blood. Wannabe The Man Behind the Man Talon even points this out in-story, remarking to a confederate that Vulcan's determination to win the War of Kings will ruin the Shi'ar Empire, and the sooner they can get rid of him and install a proper Puppet King, the better.
  • The Dragon: Very briefly to D'Ken. See Indy Ploy below.
  • Ermine Cape Effect: He was introduced wearing an X-Men uniform as he was one of Xavier's lost students, but quickly switched it out for a more regal, cape-adorned uniform after being promoted to The Evil Prince by D'Ken.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Vulcan is devastated when Deathbird winds up crippled just before the War of Kings.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Even he thought that Black Bolt's plan to force the entire galaxy into becoming Inhumans was way out of line.
  • Evil Is Petty: When Vulcan captures Havok at the conclusion of Emperor Vulcan, he spends inordinate amounts of time tormenting the captive Starjammer from his cell, to the point of neglecting his duties as the Shi'ar majestor. Interestingly, he never actually tortures Havok physically, instead just going for a series of wannabe Hannibal Lectures that completely fail to break Alex.
  • The Evil Prince: Not born one, but becomes one after marrying into the Shi'ar royal family.
  • Evil vs. Evil: Unwittingly, during his fight with the Magus, who had already taken over Adam Warlock and was planning to summon the Many-Angled Ones.
  • Expy: He has a lot in common with DC's Superboy Prime. Also fellow X-villain Exodus, both of whom are antagonists with sympathetic backgrounds who clearly won the Superpower Lottery but suffer from Sanity Slippage for it and spend lots of time on buses due to writers having little idea of what to do with them.
  • Eye Scream: Loses an eye to a pissed-off Gladiator. It's the only injury he ever sustains that sticks.
  • Freudian Excuse: His mother was murdered and he was forced to spend his childhood as a slave.
  • Galactic Conqueror: He swallowed up a large swath of space into the Shi'ar Empire during his reign, including several territories held by other empires.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: Like many mutant baddies, he has these when using his power.
  • Going Native: He initially went to space with the goal of wiping the Shi'ar Empire off the map, but falling in love with Deathbird made him pull a complete 180 and become their ruler instead. You'd think this would translate to him becoming a Bad Boss Evil Overlord, but he ends up genuinely wanting their approval and to be seen as one of them.
    Deathbird: You are Shi'ar. I can see it inside you, and the the time will come when you will show the Imperium that you were born to rule them.
  • Goo Goo Godlike: Vulcan, Cyclops's long-foreshadowed second brother was found as a baby and raised to adolescence by aliens, and has the power to absorb literally any form of matter or energy and fire it back, survive in the vacuum of space, and shut off superpowers. He was described as "beyond Omega-level", but since Omega-level already means a mutant of unlimited potential, the part about being beyond a mutant of unlimited potential is most likely a regretful mistake. Still, he's very powerful.
  • Gone Horribly Right: The chancellors and conspirators still loyal to D'Ken conspired to let Vulcan go free so that he could release Deathbird and dethrone Lilandra. The plan went a little too well.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: Developed one after becoming the Shi'ar majestor. He could go from calm and calculating to screaming madman in the blink of an eye.
  • Happily Married: From all indications, his feelings for Deathbird were genuine.
  • Hero Killer: He killed Banshee, Corsair, and a lot of the Shi'ar Imperial Guard. He also killed pretty much the entire cast in a what-if tale where he gained the power of the Phoenix.
  • Indy Ploy: His plan to take the Shi'ar throne, which was a strange mixture of this and Batman Gambit. He came to the Shi'ar on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge, fully intending to destroy their entire empire, but shifted his focus when he fell in love with Deathbird. Deathbird talked him into reviving the comatose D'Ken, the very Shi'ar who had killed his mother and been the architect of his misery. Vulcan considered just killing the comatose D'Ken, but decided there would be no point in revenge on a vegetable. So instead he revived D'Ken, let himself be talked into becoming D'Ken's Dragon, and patiently waited until his marriage to Deathbird to kill him, since by Shi'ar law he would then have the right to claim the throne.
  • Interspecies Romance: With Deathbird (Shi'ar mutant).
  • In the Hood: Early in his reign he is shown as using this to go King Incognito and learn what his new subjects think of him.
  • Killed Off for Real: After his battle with Black Bolt at the end of War of Kings. Black Bolt has since returned, but Vulcan's still dead.
  • Lack of Empathy: A rare justified example. Due to being a literal Psychopathic Manchild artificially grown into adolescence before his time, Vulcan's sense of empathy is sorely stunted. The only person he shows any affection for care to is Deathbird.
  • Light Is Not Good: His powers often manifest as light and flames, but he is most definitely not the protagonist.
  • Line-of-Sight Name: He chose the name 'Vulcan' because as a slave the only solace he had was a book about Roman mythology.
  • Long Lost Sibling: He's the third Summers brother.
  • Luckily, My Powers Will Protect Me: Being the very definition of a Smug Super, he's always going on about his being an Omega-level mutant.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: His hyper-aggressive leadership pushes the Inhumans to rise up against him.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: On a level comparable to the Inhuman king Black Bolt.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: He appears to be in his late teens but due to his severely messed up history he has the maturity level of a ten-year old child and the temperament of a perpetually angry kid.
  • Puppet King: Talon of the Fraternity of Raptors attempts to make him one, only to find out very quickly that Vulcan can't be controlled. By anyone.
  • Random Power Ranking: Since M-Day Vulcan is a classified omega level mutant. He's not particularly shy about letting people know, either.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: On the Shi'ar. It eventually winds up with him in charge.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: In his backstory, and the main reason why he hates Professor X so fiercely. After failing to stop Krakoa, Gabriel and his dying teammates were all entombed within the island while it was launched into space. He didn't get out until M-Day.
    Vulcan: (to Professor X) Now I trap you in a rock!
  • Self-Made Orphan: For a time.
  • Slouch of Villainy: After becoming majestor of the Shi'ar he becomes prone to this.
  • Smug Super: Probably the best example of this trope in the X-Men universe. As one of the most powerful mutants alive, there's almost nobody in the universe who can stand up against him. As such, the very idea of someone actually being stronger than he is absolutely inconceivable for him to imagine and at the same time, it's what deep down, he fears the most. The look on his face when Polaris briefly overpowers him is priceless.
  • The Sociopath: Professor X labels him as one in an alternate canon story.
  • Start of Darkness: In the 'Kid Vulcan' short during Deadly Genesis it was shown that he grew to adolescence as a slave of the Shi'ar, which accounts for his sunny disposition.
  • Stronger Sibling: To Cyclops and Havok, though Havok was able to beat him once when Vulcan foolishly overcharged him by throwing him into a sun.
  • Superpower Lottery: Oh, boy. Where to begin?
    • Energy Absorption: Vulcan's an 'Omega-level energy manipulator', which effectively makes him a god. There's not a lot he can't do. His demonstrated uses of this ability include:
      • Attack Reflector: Can do this as long as he's being attacked with an energy-based attack, like the optic blasts of Cyclops.
      • Flight: Capable of this on an interstellar level, being able to fly under his own power through the vacuum of space.
      • Hand Blast: His standard method of attack.
      • Healing Factor: Black Bolt unleashes the full power of his voice, managing to flay Vulcan's skin off. And he still gets up a few minutes later.
      • Immune to Mind Control: He's not completely immune to them, but is highly resistant to both telepathic and psionic attacks.
      • Nigh-Invulnerability: Tough enough to tank attacks from Polaris and Havok at once, as well as being able to withstand blows from Gladiator.
      • Power Copying: A very strange case, and possibly an ability he was only able to tap into with the psyches of his teammates, as he never used it after Deadly Genesis. It wasn't actually copying as much as it was manipulating the powers of others, presumably through his own energy-manipulating abilities.
      • Power Nullifier: Like the above Power Copying, this was an ability he was only shown using during Deadly Genesis, and he may have lost it after Darwin's psyche separated from him.
      • Power Parasite: He can rob the energy reserves of other energy manipulators, even non-traditional ones such as Adam Warlock.
      • Psychic Surgery: Not a psychic, but he awakened the comatose D'Ken from a decades-long coma by using his energy powers to re-ignite the dead neurons in D'Ken's brain.
    • Elemental Powers: A case of All There in the Manual. Vulcan's creator, Ed Brubaker, explained an interview that he has the unrealized potential to generate and control the seven elements (fire, earth, electricity, wind, water, darkness, and light). He's only actually exhibited control over a handful of those elements, though.
    • Combo Platter Powers: As if all of the above wasn't enough, Deadly Genesis revealed that he'd psionically absorbed the powers (and psyches) of his teammates Petra, Sway, and Darwin when they died, leading to:
    • So, in short, Vulcan's a Physical God.
  • Tangled Family Tree: He's a late addition to the ever-tangled Summers family line.
  • Teens Are Monsters: A shining example of what happens when you give a teenager with a shitty childhood way too much power and then let them run wild.
  • Too Powerful to Live: The trick was finding something powerful enough to kill him.
  • Trading Bars for Stripes: When the original Imperial Guard fails to wipe out the Starjammers, he puts together a new one made up of the Shi'ar Empire's most fearsome prisoners, rationalizing that hardened criminals will have more of a killer instinct than lifelong soldiers.
  • Unskilled, but Strong: He's had only a week of training as an X-Man, compared to the decades Cyclops and Havok got, but he's probably stronger than 95% of the X-Men's rogues gallery (and even more seeing as he was capable of trading blows with some of the Marvel U's super-heavyweights like Adam Warlock and Black Bolt). This was how Polaris got the upper hand; he was definitely the more powerful of the two, but she was powerful enough to be able to hold her own and much, much more experienced with fighting people on her level or stronger, whereas he was so used to annihilating anyone who challenged him that he genuinely had no idea where to go when he didn't manage to atomize someone in one shot.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: When Moira MacTaggert first found him, he was an earnest young man who was enthusiastic about being an X-Man as well as desiring to control his powers to avoid unintentionally hurting others.
  • Villain Decay: Possibly overlapping with Sanity Slippage, as Vulcan's actions became increasingly less rational as time went on. Most vividly seen when the Guardians of the Galaxy sent Adam Warlock to negotiate with him; true, Warlock slipping aboard his ship without invitation probably wasn't the wisest thing to do, but Vulcan's response? Immediately attempt to incinerate Warlock, and when that didn't work, pick a knock-down-drag-out fight with him right there in the middle of his own flagship.
  • Villain Has a Point: As monstrous as Vulcan is, he's fully justified in hating and blaming Xavier for manipulating him and his comrades to be sent on a suicide mission and then mentally wiping the memories of others to cover up the incident. If Xavier had been more upstanding and honest, Vulcan wouldn't have turned out the way he did.
  • Warrior Prince: Once he marries into the Shi'ar royal family.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: Explicitly stated. He wasn't originally so powerful; the energies Scarlet Witch released on M-Day were somehow all absorbed by him in his comatose state, leading him to experience an exponential power increase all at once. Gaining so much power so quickly definitely took its toll.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Hinted at in the main books, and explicitly stated in an alternate story where he gained the power of the Phoenix Force.
  • The Worf Effect: As mentioned above, Vulcan fought Adam Warlock at one point. He also completely dominated Warlock, using his energy-absorption powers to drain all of Warlock's magical reserves and rendering him nearly helpless. Keep in mind that Adam Warlock is a cosmic-tier hero who has thrown down with the likes of Thanos and even Galactus. More impressive given this was Adam turning into the Magus, who's even stronger and more dangerous than his good self.
  • Wreathed in Flames: Uses them for his Battle Aura.
  • Younger Than They Look: Between the Shi'ar forcibly speeding up his aging, and that long period spent being not quite dead, despite looking to be in his mid-to-late teens, he's mentally a lot younger than he should be (at one point during "Rise and Fall of the Shi'ar Empire", he hallucinates a child version of himself who tries to work out the math).



Carl Denti
Debut: Uncanny X-Men Annual #17 (1993)

"Villain", "hero", it's all a matter of perspective, wouldn't you say?

A Lawman Gone Bad who takes it upon himself to act as judge, jury and executioner for fugitive mutants. Not the Big Bad of the X-Cutioner's Song crossover, or even affiliated with it, despite what his handle might lead you to believe.

  • Blue and Orange Morality: Invokes this in his debut appearance, as seen with his profile quote above.
  • Brought to You By The Letter "X": His name was inspired by the X-Cutioner's Song, a 1992 X-books Crisis Crossover that featured X-Force villain Stryfe as the titular X-Cutioner (though he was never called that on-panel). Evidently creator Scott Lobdell thought it was too cool a name to waste, as he gave it to this new character a year later.
  • Cowboy Cop: When the FBI couldn't apprehend a mutant (or he thought a jail cell wasn't enough) Denti would gear up and go after them as the X-Cutioner.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: In later appearances Denti became a Gambit villain, targeting the Ragin' Cajun for termination solely because Remy was able to defeat and humiliate him.
  • Fantastic Racism: Played with, as Denti himself does not hate mutants in general but recognizes how dangerous some of them are and is all too willing to work outside the law to deal with them. This naturally motivates him into becoming a Vigilante Man.
  • Follow the Leader: Denti is basically a Punisher retread that targets mutants specifically, and was created when the Punisher's popularity was at an all-time high. This turns out to be true in-universe as well as out, with Denti meeting Frank and admitting to him that the Punisher was his inspiration for becoming the X-Cutioner.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Denti eventually abandoned the X-Cutioner persona and returned to work as an FBI agent.
    • Karma Houdini: Despite (accidentally) murdering two kids he'd tricked into working for him, Denti is able to return to his old job without facing any charges.
  • In the Hood: One of the more sensible examples in comics. Being a still-active FBI agent, Denti uses this to maintain his Secret Identity.
  • Kick the Dog: Aside from his first kill, the mutant rapist Tower, Denti seems to go after mutants too weak or vulnerable to fight back. His next target after Tower is Mastermind, who was already in his literal deathbed thanks to the Legacy Virus, and after that was a wash he targeted Emma Frost, who was in a coma at the time.
  • Lawman Gone Bad: An FBI agent following in the footsteps of the Punisher.
  • Military Brat: His family has a distinguished tradition of military service.
  • Murder Is the Best Solution: True to his name, the X-Cutioner did not try to arrest mutants, instead just opting for summary executions.
  • Never My Fault: One of Denti's main character flaws. He's always blaming the X-Men for getting in his way, reasoning that they deserve death by not stepping aside to let him commit murder.
  • '90s Anti-Hero: You don't get much more nineties than The X-Cutioner (unless your name is Adam X the X-Treme).
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: The main reason why he failed as a villain and was retired. Despite his whole identity being based around the concept of killing fugitive mutants, Denti's only kill over his entire villainous career was the aforementioned Tower. Every time he tried and failed to kill a target (most of whom were invalids unable to even defend themselves!) it took a little more wind out of his sails. By the time Gambit was mopping him up in his solo series, Denti was firmly in has-been territory.
  • Put on a Bus: Owing to the character's now-goofy handle, he's been pretty much banished back to the nineties that spawned him.
  • Sanity Slippage: Denti's father was revealed to have died from it, going nuts on a battlefield and having to be put down by his own men, and Denti himself suffers from it in later appearances, blurring his already vague sense of morality in the name of getting another kill under his belt.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: Archangel saves him from a nasty fall the first time they meet. Denti's way of saying 'thank you' is a taser to the face.
  • Vigilante Man: Rest assured, his mission of mutant execution did not come with an FBI mandate.
  • Where Does He Get All Those Wonderful Toys?: To the point of being a non-powered case of Power Copying — Denti uses his FBI connections to piece together a small arsenal of confiscated weaponry from the various extraterrestrials the X-Men have battled over the years. Archangel aptly describes him as a "walking medley of the X-Men's greatest villains".



Debut: Death of Dracula (2010)

The youngest son of Dracula, unhappy that humanity kept pushing vampires further and further into the darkness, he devised a coup against his own father and sets his eyes on world domination, starting by converting all mutants located in San Francisco to his cause.

  • Assassin Outclassin': Shortly after staking his father, Alyssa tried to have Xarus killed by sending three Siren vampires to seduce him. He managed to overpower them just in time when things started to get intimate.
  • Antagonistic Offspring: To his father.
  • Big Bad: In Curse of the Mutants.
  • The Casanova: Xarus is introduced with his girlfriend Alyssa around his arms, has no problem getting hooking up with three Siren ladies at the same time. Like father, like son.
  • Cain and Abel: He tried to get his eldest brother Janus killed for refusing to side with him in his coup.
  • Daywalking Vampire: Xarus manages to get the support of the vampires by having invented a light-bending device that allows them to walk under the sunlight.
  • Depending on the Artist: Artists never seen to agree whether he should have blonde or brown hair.
  • The Evil Prince: Fits this trope like a glove since he wants to replace his father as the new vampire king, and get rid of any potential threats such as his brother Janus.
  • Karmic Death: He is beheaded by his resurrected father, whom he had previously staked and beheaded.
  • New Era Speech:
    For centuries — centuries — we've been told we are damned! That we must live our lives in the dark, the world's dirty secret. That we are the corrupt shadows of humanity, undeserving of our own place in the light. And you — like my father over there — have accepted that. I say, by our own might, by the force of our will, we are redeemed! Together, united, we will reintroduce vampirekind to the world. And the world will tremble.
  • Vampire Monarch: What he inspired to become.
  • Unholy Matrimony: Originally used to be romantically involved with Alyssa, but she betrayed him too many times. He then decided to take Jubilee as his consort.



Zala Dane (yes, really)
Debut: Astonishing Tales #3 (1970)

I think you'll find a full measure of respect, and not a little fear... for the woman responsible for the ultimate destruction of Magneto.

An ambitious Savage Land priestess who attempted several times to take over the region. Notable for her alliance with Sauron and for having stripped Polaris from her magnetic powers not long after the Inferno arc, to the point of being on par with Magneto in terms of mastery over magnetism. She was eventually killed by Magneto himself for claiming his own title.

She appears as a Boss in the 1993 X-Men game.

  • Aborted Arc: Under Chris Claremont's original plan Zaladane was going to come Back from the Dead and join new villain group the Wild Boys (yes, named after the Duran Duran song). This group was retooled into the Upstarts after Claremont left and Zaladane remained dead, her place in the new group taken by new villain Siena Blaze instead.
  • Ambiguously Lesbian: Her interactions with Shanna in the X-Men's late 80s "Savage Land" story arc were ambiguous, to say the least. Uncanny X-Men #250, especially, which had her all but going I Have You Now, My Pretty on the captured jungle heroine. (The story was written, naturally, by Chris Claremont.)
  • Antagonistic Offspring: Towards Magneto, assuming she was in fact his daughter.
  • Arch-Enemy: To Ka-Zar and later Polaris.
  • Big Bad: Only used for this in a single issue, Uncanny X-Men #275, but in that issue she successfully supplanted Magneto himself in threat level.
  • Brought To You By The Letter "Z": As the High Evolutionary's assistant Zaladane wore an outfit featuring a prominent stylized Z, predating Lord Zedd by a handy decade or so.
  • Cain and Abel: She's the Cain, Polaris is the Abel.
  • Conflict Killer: She was a big enough threat in UXM #275 to necessitate an alliance between S.H.I.E.L.D, the Russian government, the X-Men (via Rogue) and Magneto.
  • Continuity Snarl: Is she Magneto's daughter?
  • The Dragon: To Garrok and later the High Evolutionary before striking out on her own.
  • Fluffy Fashion Feathers: Her last costume incorporated these, presumably as a riff on her first (which featured a headdress that looked remarkably like a rooster comb).
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: Introduced as the queen of the Sun People, one of the Savage Land's multiple indigenous tribes.
  • High Priest: For Garrok's cult, which was adapted for a two-part episode in the 90s animated series.
  • Kick the Dog: She once kidnapped an innocent man and subjected him to a ritual that overwrote his mind and body with that of Garrok, essentially condemning the poor sucker to a Fate Worse than Death.
  • Kill It with Fire: Alongside Garrok, she attempted to have Colossus executed via burning at a stake.
  • Killed Off for Real: In Uncanny X-Men #275, courtesy of Magneto.
  • Lady Macbeth: Played this role to both Garrok and the High Evolutionary, actively egging on and encouraging their villainy (not that Garrok needed much encouraging).
  • Long Lost Sibling: Revealed/retconned into being one for Polaris.
  • Manipulative Bitch: Deconstructed during her time as the High Evolutionary's assistant, when she all but broke her back trying to manipulate the latter only for him to reveal to the heroes that he knew her true goals all along, but didn't care enough about politics to go to the trouble of stopping her. As long as Zaladane helped him preserve and restore the Savage Land's environment, the High Evolutionary didn't care at all what she did in her off time.
  • Meaningless Villain Victory: In her sole What If? appearance Zaladane was able to successfully consolidate her rule over the Savage Land, only for it to become moot when a fleet of Sentinels slaughtered her and nearly every other mutant on Earth.
  • More Deadly Than the Male: She is heavily implied in her last appearance to have grown stronger than Magneto, so much so that Mags declares her Too Powerful to Live and kills her. Few heroes or villains can said to have made Magneto feel fear, but Zaladane is one of them.
  • Mouth of Sauron: Served this role to Garrok in her first few appearances.
  • Mutant: Averted, at least if we accept her word for it. Zaladane claims at one point to be a mutate, an ordinary human empowered with mutant-level abilities via technology, and while she never proves this it should be noted that the Savage Land features a heavy mutate population. Though if she is truly Polaris's sister then she was either lying and actually a mutant or she had latent mutant potential that was activated by mutate technology.
  • Near-Villain Victory: In part due to a Russian colonel's grudge against Magneto, but Zaladane came this close to having the Savage Land under her leadership declared a sovereign state by the United Nations, in exchange for her agreement to leave the rest of the world in peace. Zaladane was smart enough to realize the U.N. would probably not leave things at that, but her fledgling statecraft went no further as the good guys kicked in her door not too long after.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: At the height of her power Zaladane was powerful enough to threaten every nation on Earth with devastating earthquakes.
  • Power Parasite: Not naturally, but she used the High Evolutionary's technology to siphon Polaris's powers into herself. As a Chris Claremont plot, this event stuck for some time, with Zaladane retaining Polaris's powers right up to her death and Polaris manifesting a secondary Flying Brick mutation that lasted until the inevitable Status Quo Is God reset button.
  • Race Lift: A very minor example, but her sprite as a boss in X-Men (1993) is much darker skinned than her depiction in the comics.
  • Stronger Sibling: To Polaris, if she is in fact her sister.
  • Superpowerful Genetics: A debatable case with her debatable lineage, but it does bear noting that she uses magical powers very similar in nature to those of her possible half-sister the Scarlet Witch.
  • There Can Be Only One: Literally the words used by Magneto himself as he killed her: "There can be only one Master of Magnetism."
  • Took a Level in Badass: Took several levels in her final appearance, to the point where Magneto himself decided she was Too Powerful to Live.
  • Ungrateful Bitch: In their first fight Ka-Zar saved Zaladane's life by cushioning her fall when they both fell off a pterodactyl. Zaladane's way of saying thanks was to lure Ka-Zar into a cavern guarded by a demonic beast. Amusingly, this led to some Laser-Guided Karma when an out-of-control Garrok chased her right back into said cavern.
  • Vain Sorceress: Mildly vain. Zaladane's not above a good gloat, but fighting for power in the Savage Land also taught her the necessities of being a Combat Pragmatist.
  • Would Hurt a Child: In one issue she used her sorcery to control Colossus and ordered him to kill Ka-Zar's infant son out of spite.
  • Zeerust: Presumably the reason she has not been revived; like the Marauders, Zaladane's design was heavily influenced by the era she was created in and consequently she comes off as rather dated today.



Debut: X-Men: Kingbreaker #2

Oracle: ... Some kind of symbiote, we had never encountered anything like it. D'Ken wanted it studied, but after he died, it just remained locked away. My Lord... it is a monstrosity. It feeds on people. It consumes their brains...
Emperor Vulcan: Then if it wants a fresh meal, it will do as I tell it. What else?

  • Blank White Eyes: Like its distant relations it has large white eyes.
  • Boxed Crook: One of the Shi'ar's most fearsome prisoners, until Emperor Vulcan decides to give it a job.
  • Brain Food: Like Venom, it has a taste for brains.
  • Combat Tentacles: It can project pseudopodia and tendrils to attack and restrain opponents.
  • The Dreaded: It is one of the five most dangerous entities captured by the Shi'ar Empire.
  • More Teeth than the Osmond Family: It possesses a wide mouth full of sharp fangs.
  • Puppeteer Parasite: It took over the body of Raza Longknife during a fight with the Starjammers.
  • Rogues-Gallery Transplant: The symbiotes are much more common foes of Spider-Man than the X-Men. Appropriately he's finally restrained and captured by Nova who had a lot of rogues gallery overlap with Spider-Man in the past.
  • The Symbiote: It is a member of the same species as Venom. Nova managed to capture and separate it from its host due to his experience with fighting Venom.
  • Trading Bars for Stripes: It was imprisoned by Shi'ar Emperor D'Ken, who intended to study it, but Gabriel Summers killed him and recruited Zzxz into his army.
  • Yandere: Zzxz really wanted Lilandra as its next host, but took over Raza of the Starjammers instead.
  • Uncanny Family Resemblance: It is a black symbiote with large white eyes, making it largely identical to its distant relative Venom.
  • A Villain Named "Z__rg": Its name is composed completely out of consonants from the end of the alphabet.


Example of: