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Comic Book / Wolverine

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"I'm the best there is at what I do. And what I do isn't very nice."

Weapon X. The Berserker. The Man with the Claws. The most famous X-Man.

The '90s Anti-Hero. The Mutant Superhero. The Healing Factor Superhero.

Wolverine (born James Howlett, also known as Logan, James Logan, and Weapon X) is a Marvel Comics superhero, known for his association with the X-Men; sharp, indestructible claws; berserker rages; managing to be in many places at once; having quite a few tropes named after him; and for being very, very popular. At times he's been the most popular Marvel Super Hero, which led to his tendency to... um... show up everywhere.

He first appeared in The Incredible Hulk #180 (October, 1974), making his true debut in the next issue as an adversary until the two teamed up to fight the Wendigo. Both issues were written by Len Wein and drawn by Herb Trimpe, though John Romita, Sr. is credited with the original design of the character. Wolverine would go on to join the X-Men the following year, with his true origins remaining ambiguously buried in a mishmash of false and real memories for decades, as his popularity skyrocketed. He would gain his own miniseries, and then his own title, and then his own cartoon, and then spawned tonnes of characters based off of him, then his own film, trilogy, and then... well, then he was kind of everywhere... and still is. Even here on TV Tropes.


See the franchise page for more details on the adaptations

Hey bub, ya prolly wanna check out the self-demonstratin' version of my page.

For tropes pertaining to All-New Wolverine please see that page or X-23.

Wolverine provides examples of the following tropes:

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    A - E 
  • '90s Anti-Hero: Logan was created in the '70s, but throughout his time in the X-Men comics he's had the anti-authoritarian attitude, willingness to kill, and gritty, dark backstory that defined many such characters in the 90s.
  • Aborted Arc:
    • The Reveal that Apocalypse, Mr. Sinister, James Hudson, or Professor Xavier were involved in the Weapon X program appears to have been dropped.
    • Sabretooth was to be revealed as Logan's biological father or brother, but the idea was dropped.
    • How did Silverfox end up still alive as a HYDRA agent? The answer will shock you.
  • Absurdly Sharp Blade: His claws with adamantium, especially since, prior to the reveal of them being bone, they were often drawn as actual blades. In the first issue of his first solo series, Logan's inner dialogue describes them as "honed so keen they'll cut through anything" and in X-Men #1, Cyclops jumps all over him for popping his claws in Prof. X's face to "tag" him at the end of the Danger Room exercise which starts the issue, saying "[a] wave of [his] hand could pass them through solid steel".
  • Absurdly Sharp Claws: His claws without adamantium. They're formed of extremely dense bone rather than keratin, and have cutting power on par with a metal blade.
  • Abusive Parents
    • Elizabeth Howlett, Logan's mother, was for the most part neglectful (though she did spend time in an asylum after her first born son, John Howlett III's mutation occurred which led to her scarring) until the night when John Howlett was killed. Thomas Logan was killed by his biological son James whose mutant powers recently emerged after witnessing the death of his step father. Elizabeth's reaction was to call her distraught son an "animal" while hitting him across the face with Thomas' shotgun, making him and his caretaker Rose, flee the mansion. Afraid of history repeating itself and seeing her lover's body on the floor, she committed suicide.
    • Thomas Logan was absolutely horrible to his son and Logan's half-brother Dog Logan, often yelling and hitting him as well as introducing him to drink at a young age and encouraging the boy's psychotic behaviour. In Hell, he was actually proud of Logan's massive death count, and it's hinted that the Logan bloodline followed similar mental instability as Thomas did.
  • The Ace: He would like to remind you that he's the best at what he does, and what he does isn't very nice.
  • Achilles' Heel: He has a strong fear of deep water, as the weight of his adamantium-laced skeleton makes it difficult or impossible for him to swim. Drowning is one of the few things that might overcome Logan's healing factor. There's a great deal of Depending on the Writer at play here.
  • Affirmative-Action Legacy:
    • Well, sort of. During the Dark Reign, Logan's bisexual, half-Japanese son Daken took on the Wolverine mantle as a member of the Dark Avengers. However, they both used the Wolverine name at the same time, and the situation with Daken was always intended to be temporary.
    • Played much straighter with the Wolverines series, with Daken, X-23, Lady Deathstrike, Mystique, and Sabretooth all set to take up Logan's mantle to varying degrees.
    • The All-New Wolverine series officially saw X-23 become the new Wolverine.
  • The Alcoholic: Subverted; he definitely fits the "drinks a lot" part, but due to his healing factor, he can't actually get wasted or develop addiction or dependence, although Depending on the Writer, Wolverine has gotten drunk; he just needs a lot of alcohol to do so.
  • All Asians Know Martial Arts: Averted with a Lampshade Hanging in the storyline Goodbye Chinatown, when streetwise tagalong kid Yuen Yee ends up in the middle of a pitched battle between Wolvie, an ancient kung fu master, a talking gorilla, and a bunch of ninjas, yakuza thugs and giant dragons.
    Mook: You gonna show us your kung fu too, you little-
    *Yuen draws a pistol and shoots him*
    Yuen: Right. Because all Chinese know kung fu. You racist *#$@.
  • Already Met Everyone: Wolverine was later retconned to have met loads of different characters in the past, including Captain America, Peter Parker's parents, Black Widow, Mystique, Nick Fury, The Incredible Hercules, Daredevil enemy Nuke, not to mention basically everybody ever tied to Weapon X. In fact, a revelation about Weapon Plus does this to Weapon X, revealing its ties to Nuke and Project: Rebirth that created Captain America.
  • Alternate Company Equivalent:
    • Wolverine has enough similarities to Batman that one could make this argument. When Marvel and DC collaborated to produce Amalgam Comics, combining their characters for fun, Wolverine and Batman fused to become "Dark Claw".
    • Another DC wildman prior to Logan was LSH member Timber Wolf, who has gotten more feral and growl-ly since Wolverine's popularity.
  • Amusing Injuries: Wolverine's ability to heal from virtually anything has led to him often being the target of some quite slapstick-style humor that would be fatal for most anyone else, such as a giant Iceman squishing him like a bug or Cyclops blasting him out a window for annoying him. Even compared with other characters with the same healing factor: In World War Hulk, Hulk putting X-23 through a wall for taking his eye is portrayed as shocking, while Hulk making Wolverine a human paddle ball for doing the same is played for humor.
  • Animal-Themed Superbeing: He might seem like he is based off actual wolverines at first glance since he has enhanced senses and claws, but those are very generic animal traits. Wolverine is more "animal symbolism" than anything; his power-set invokes the wolverine's reputation as an extremely tough and aggressive creature that can basically shred whatever it's going after.
  • Anime Hair: Logan's standard look since his introduction has been a swept-back mane-like hairstyle that comes to prominent points on the sides of his head, combined with muttonchop sideburns. During Adam Kubert's run as artist of the self-titled comic in The '90s, the combination was so long that he almost did have an actual mane; in newer works his hair tends to be a more realistic length while keeping the same style. Living Between Wednesdays actually did an analysis of the various aspects of Wolverine's hair.
  • Annoying Arrows: Logan, once needing to get a small child to safety through a bunch of archers, chose to block them with his body and keep going. It worked, though he wasn't in very good shape at the end.
  • Anti-Hero: A Trope Codifier for superhero comics, although very inconsistently. He's run the gamut from Pragmatic Hero to Unscrupulous Hero to Nominal Hero in the comics, while the cartoons and movies consistently portray him as a Pragmatic Hero, except for The Superhero Squad Show, where he is a pure hero. Claremont remarked that he disliked the attempts to make Wolverine darker. The following bit of internal dialogue from the first issue of Logan's self-titled series, in the middle of a huge battle with cutthroat slavers who have butchered the crew and passengers of a captured boat, sums things up nicely.
    I'm an X-Man. Mutants like me. Good people, idealists, dreamers. With them, killing is a last resort. With me, it's second nature. I take the world as it is, and give better than I get. Come at me with a sword. I'll meet you with a sword. You want mercy. Show a little first. [...] Some of those folks died fighting... some praying... some accepted their fate... some cursed it... some begged for their lives... most were terrified. Details don't matter. What's important is that they died. And those scales have to be balanced. In kind.
  • Arch-Enemy: Sabretooth, who is essentially a larger version of Wolverine but without a shred of moral decency and who personifies the darker aspects of Wolverine's nature and personality. He also gets a huge kick out of tormenting Logan, and makes a point to strike at his loved ones and others with whom he has strong emotional ties every chance he gets.
  • Archnemesis Dad: Sabretooth was originally planned to be his father, but that idea was scrapped. Then there was some ambiguity of him being his half-brother, but it didn't turn out that way either, so ultimately there is no blood relation between them. They're simply two guys from the same province who have similar powers and cannot stand each other. His actual dad Thomas Logan was one to him as well, as he tried to kill his son and was a horrible dad to his other son Dog Logan.
  • Arrogant God vs. Raging Monster: His rivalry with telepathic Serial Killer "Mr. X". X is a master martial artist that has been practically undefeated due to his skills and low level telepathic powers, that allows for him to predict anyone's moves. Wolverine is also a great martial artist, but is more famous for his attacks of rage, while also possessing a superior healing factor, and a high tolerance to pain and damage. In their first fight, X beats Wolverine easily. But in their second Wolverine is berserking and X can't adequately read his mind to predict his actions. In their third, Wolverine figures it out halfway through and intentionally goes berserk.
  • Art Evolution:
    • From Logan's first appearance through the 90s, the following were pretty consistent:
      • He was short, homely, and very hirsute.
      • His claws came out of the backs of his hands behind his knuckles, usually through metal chutes that were either part of his gloves or implanted in his hands (the latter being prevalent in the late 80s/early 90s).
      • The claws were either thin blades or like gently-curved spikes with really sharp tips. The former was more prevalent in the '90s but really depended on the artist, while the latter was especially prevalent in the '70s and '80s, as well as in Weapon X. Sans adamantium, the claws were consistently drawn as bone spikes.
    • Ever since the X-Men Film Series, the following have been pretty consistent:
      • He's more handsome, less hairy and generally more of an average height.
      • The claws come out directly between his knuckles and tend to look like the heavier, more knife-like movie claws.
      • The claws have no openings of their own and have to tear through his flesh to be extended.
  • Artistic License – Biology
    • Aside from the issues with lacing Logan's bones with the adamantium, some depictions of his skeleton (especially in the Weapon X miniseries) have long adamantium sprues sticking off his bones from the injection ports, which would play havoc with his muscles as he moves.
    • Most artists make Wolverine's claws so long that he either couldn't completely retract them, or the tips would be inside his hands if he could, meaning he either wouldn't be able to flex his wrists or would shred his hands from the inside if he could. Initially the length of the claws was stated to be twelve inches, which would be abnormally long for a human forearm, especially on such a short person. More recently this has been pared down to a more reasonable nine inches. Also, during the "feral subhuman" arc, artists liked to put small spikes and barbs on the claws, which would really tear up his arms and hands when he used them.
    • If Wolverine was really 5'3" and 195 pounds (and that's without the adamantium), he would be more than fifty pounds overweight; his being very muscular may be the reason behind this.
    • The X-Men movies having the claws come out between his knuckles introduces new anatomical oddities.
  • The Atoner: One of the reasons given for Wolverine appearing in so many titles is that after regaining his memories, he felt so guilty over all the nasty stuff he did in his past, and the fact that his son is basically just as bad a person in the present as he used to be, that Logan feels compelled to try and do as much good as physically possible, though he feels he can't ultimately make amends. Of course, this doesn't really account for all his appearances before he got his memories back and learned he had a son....
  • Audible Sharpness: SNIKT! (with the adamantium) and SCHLIKT! (without)
  • Awkward Stoplight Moment: Issue #47 of his second solo title revolves around a drug user who snaps and goes on a killing spree, with Logan as more of a background character for most of it. Near the climax, as Logan is on his motorcycle at a stop light, the killer pulls up beside him in his car. Already drunk and ramped up on adrenaline from his previous kills, as well as armed and with stolen money in the seat beside him, the killer starts freaking out as he looks at Logan, seeing that he's not someone to mess with and wondering if he's a cop.
  • Backstab Backfire: In the final issue of the Kitty Pryde & Wolverine limited series, Logan defeats Ogun and brings him to his knees, but spares Ogun's life and starts to walk away alongside Kitty. Ogun produces a knife and rushes at the two of them from behind. Wolverine notices in time to tell Kitty to use her phasing power, causing the knife to pass harmlessly through her. He then stabs Ogun with his claws, killing the villain.
  • Badass and Child Duo: So much it's a Running Gag. "Child" is sometimes overstating it, but all of his well-known sidekicks are adolescent girls who he can both trade snark with and act violently protective of. If it ain't broke... How much of a running gag is it? Well when his time-displaced future version ends up in the present, he immediately forms this relationship with the time-displaced teen Jean Grey.
  • Badass Teacher: Became this lately, especially as of the Wolverine and the X-Men title, wherein he himself rebuilt the Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters into the Jean Grey School for Higher Learning, with himself as the headmaster.
  • Bash Brothers: With Colossus originally, but putting him on a team together with any bruiser in the Marvel Universe results in this.
  • Beard of Sorrow: Grows one after he is tricked into killing his children.
  • Because I'm Good At It: Often makes comments to this effect about his "profession".
    Wolverine: I'm the best there is at what I do. And what I do isn't very nice.
  • Berserk Button: Early in his X-Men tenure, Nightcrawler played a prank on him and stood there, laughing his ass off. Wolverine lunged at him, claws out, and only Kurt's teleportation ability saved his life. Logan also doesn't take kindly to people calling him "runt", "shorty", or otherwise mocking his height. Offending Wolverine's dignity is a good way to get some claws buried in your chest.
  • The Berserker: His default fighting style is wading into battle, hacking and slashing with his claws. The more straight application is when he gets angered enough to slip into a "berserker rage", where he lapses into an animalistic mental state and will lash out at anyone nearby with aggression far beyond what he's normally capable of. He hates the latter, but has acknowledged that it's saved his life more than once.
  • Betty and Veronica: Logan was the Veronica to Scott's Betty in relation to Jean. Originally this was just to give fans a reason to care about the then-new character, who'd yet to achieve his now-legendary popularity. It's since taken a life of its own, and some fans act like it's the defining aspect of both Scott and Logan's characters, and in the films, it is. Oddly enough, the whole Jean/Scott/Wolverine triangle pretty much started as a retcon. It was at most hinted at back in the day, but in the late '80s it was retconned up in a big way.
  • The Big Guy: Defied. Despite having all the characteristics, being muscle-bound, hairy, badass and everything, he is actually shorter than most of his friends and foes, the latter (especially Sabretooth) often calling him "runt" to insult him.
  • Big Guy, Little Guy: Wolverine being very short at 5'3" and Sabretooth being very tall at 6'6" serves to make even more contrast between them.
  • Big, Screwed-Up Family: Hoo boy, where to even start. One legitimate son is a manipulative sociopath who enjoys toying with others for his own amusement, while another he hasn't seen since he was a baby. One "daughter" is a depressed and likely suicidal ex-child soldier and ex-prostitute struggling to turn her life around. Another daughter is a sorceress whose only purpose was to fight an immortal demon every ten years. He has who knows how many illegitimate children, many of whom were sent to kill him and he was forced to kill first, only later discovering who they really were, and his father wasn't actually his biological father. And we still haven't even touched on his half brothers (John Howlett III, and Dog Logan) and adopted daughter.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: Logan's retractable claws that extend from his hands. This particular mutation carries through his genes, as his Opposite-Sex Clone X-23 has two claws in each arm and one in each foot, and his biological son Daken also has three claws in each arm, two that extend from his hands and one that comes out from under his forearm.
  • Blessed with Suck: His powers come with a number of drawbacks:
    • The combination of the healing factor and his claws not having natural sheaths to move through means that they cut through his arms and hands every time he uses them. Depending on the depiction, this can be anywhere from just poking through the skin to slicing through muscle, tendons, and joints. This is quite painful in any case, but fortunately, the healing factor means the pain is brief, and he has a very high pain tolerance.
      • One issue of X-Force graphically highlighted this fact, with Wolverine repeatedly popping and retracting one claw while stewing over something...and a small spurt of blood with each SNIKT!
      • In the Weapon X standalone story, the metal chutes his claws extend through are surgically implanted in his hands because of the damage the claws did the first time he extended them. Sadly, the chutes were discontinued from the artwork for no explained reason, despite how they alleviated this problem.
      • In Wolverine #75, his first time popping his claws after Magneto pulled out the adamantium was a gory mess, and was excruciatingly painful. Afterwards, he had to keep his hands constantly bandaged to deal with bleeding from the holes made by the claws, and the pain, while not as bad as that first time, was still a lot worse than normal because his Healing Factor was so overstressed that it had stopped working. He still kept it up, though...
      [Logan pops his right claws while he and Jubilee are talking]
      Logan: I pop 'em out a few times a day. Keeps the channels pierced ears.
      Jubilee: Did it stop hurting?
      Logan: Nope.
      • Also, from the first movie:
      Rogue: When they come out...does it hurt?
      Logan: Every time.
    • The adamantium may reinforce his bones and make his claws that much more dangerous, but it actually slows down his healing factor because it's poisonous to have it on his bones. X-23, in contrast, heals much faster than him because she only has adamantium on her claws, and even grouses at Logan at one point about how slowly he heals. The reason for this was Ret Conned, but it still applies. Then again, the healing factor is depicted so inconsistently that this might as well not apply anyway. In one story which featured the X-Men fighting the Brotherhood on Muir Island, Mystique threatens him with a weapon that will deactivate his healing powers and explains that his adamantium bones will poison and kill him quickly if she uses it. This is a focal point of Logan—whether through age or some other factor, his healing factor is dramatically reduced and adamantium poisoning is breaking his body down.
    • Another downside of the adamantium is that the extra weight (around 100 lbs) makes it very difficult for Logan to swim, giving him a healthy fear of deep water since his healing factor can't deal with asphyxiation.
    • His enhanced senses may seem like a cool thing to have, but most people would probably go insane from trying to process that level of constant sensory input 24/7.
    • His metabolism is usually extremely effective in breaking down anesthetics, sedatives, etc. before they can have a significant effect, which very much sucks for him when those would actually be beneficial. He also practically never gets drunk, which with everything Logan has gone through would be nice to do once in a while.
  • Body Horror
    • Logan's spiky, freakishly distorted body in the fever dream-like memories of his handling by the Weapon X program, as depicted in Weapon X and his self-titled series.
    • Magneto ripping the adamantium out of his body in X-Men #25 left him looking like a grotesque meld of a pincushion and a melted candle.
    • Wolverine's "feral" form that he devolved into in Wolverine #100, which had elongated, barbed claws, a warped face with the nose shrunken to little more than slits, diminished height, bulging muscles, exaggeratedly hairy arms, hunched back, and Sabretooth-like clawed fingernails and fang-like canines. Picture Wolverine as somewhere between a troll and a caveman, and you have the basic idea.
  • Breakout Character: Logan was originally supposed to be a one-off Hulk villain. It didn't quite turn out that way.
  • Breakout Villain: His archnemesis Sabretooth used to be a minor Iron Fist villain.
  • But for Me, It Was Tuesday: He's killed tons of people (mostly baddies but still), to the point slaughtering characters or mooks borders on forgettable or a source of his angst depending on the writer. Best exemplified in the Morrison run when speaking to Angel, a mutant he just rescued by slaughtering some U-Men mooks before being covered in their blood, at a restaurant:
    I do stuff like that everyday. I've been doing it most of my life. No big deal. Eat something.
  • Cain and Abel: While not siblings, he and Sabretooth share a closely connected past, were previously friends (to an extent) and were both "reborn" in the Weapon X program. He also has this with his actual half-brother Dog. Ironically, in the Origin story, Dog was strongly implied to be a young Sabretooth, but they are later shown to not be the same person. Dog is still alive and well after almost 133 years and really knows how to hold a grudge. Another version is this with his other half-brother John Howlett III.
  • Canada Bub: Probably the most famous superhero from the True North.
  • Canadian Equals Hockey Fan: A couple of quick gags on Wolverine: First Class showcase that even Logan is this (and it's a big Berserk Button to interrupt him when he's watching a least if you are a runaway Danger Room robot looking for a fight, that is).
    Logan: It is my right as a Canadian!
  • Carpet of Virility: Logan is very hirsute, and along with his various in-story romances, he's been revealed to have sired a lot of kids.
  • Cartwright Curse: One of the most egregious illustrations of the saying "Being paired up with a badass never ends well for a woman". Wives, fiances, girlfriends, girlfriends he hadn't been dating for years but happened to hook up with again. Dating Logan 9 times out of 10 will result in your horrible death...except for Yukio and she's now a paraplegic.
  • Cast from Calories: Wolverine is occasionally depicted as needing to do this with high protein meals, to fuel his healing factor. He gives advice to X-23 to follow suit.
  • Catching the Speedster: Wolverine has often bested Quicksilver by simply holding out his fist for Quicksilver to run into.
    Wolverine: That never gets old.
  • Catchphrase:
    • "Yer choice, bub. Yer funeral."
    • And of course who can forget: "I'm the best there is at what I do. And what I do isn't very nice."
  • Cigar Chomper: Until smoking became unbelievably uncool around the '90s, Wolverine was rarely without a cigar. Even now he still flaunts one in the movies.
  • Cock Fight: Logan has a special place in his heart for Jean Grey. Cyclops knows it, and does NOT approve. Just like Logan doesn't approve of Jean with Scott but bears with it for the sake of Jean. Not that it ever stopped them from squabbling and sometimes physically fighting about it because, in Logan's words, "Cyke doesn't deserve a woman like Jean!"
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Logan's uniform color made it easy to tell what team he was working with. Blue/yellow or brown/tan: he's acting heroic and working with the X-Men and/or the Avengers. Dull gray/black: he's doing X-Force work (and you should probably get out of the way).
  • The Comically Serious: His brooding and grumpy nature sometimes allows for hilarious moments. Being paired with young girls (which is fairly common) or babies helps.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: Averted most of the time. While Logan's both an X-Man and Avenger, he makes it clear that he considers the Avengers 'work' and the X-Men as 'family'.
  • Conspicuous Gloves: In his early appearances, Wolverine had his claws attached to his gloves. Once they were said to come out of his hands, his gloves had slits to accommodate their extension.
  • The Cowl: Subverted. Wolverine has been called "Batman, sans the subtlety".
  • Dating Catwoman: Wolverine tends to have the bad habit of getting romantically involved with women who end up being his enemy or try to kill him and his friends later down the road. Notable example include Mystique and Viper.
  • Death Is Cheap: He's been killed a few times but keeps coming back, until The Death of Wolverine finally put an end to him...or not, seeing as he returns in Marvel Legacy.
  • Depending on the Writer: The absurdity of Logan's Healing Factor seems to rest on who happens to be writing him at the moment.
  • Determinator: Logan is one stubborn son of a bitch. Even when badly hurt, he'll shrug it off and just keep coming at you until one of you drops. Unfortunately for whoever he's fighting, this will inevitably give Logan the time he needs to heal.
  • Disappeared Dad: All over the place. His biological father killed the man who raised him, and in turn he killed his biological father. Then on his end, he didn't even know Daken existed until Daken was over 60. On top of that the "Wolverine Goes to Hell" arc confirmed he has sired many, many more children during his lifetime whose lives he has been completely absent from; "I see the faces of the children I was never there for. Daken and others I don't even recognize". Among them were The Mongrels, whom were pitted against him by The Red Right Hand, were killed by him, and then he found out they were his offspring. Wow.
  • Distaff Counterpart: His successor Laura Kinney (aka X-23), who's literally his female clone made from an incomplete DNA sample (the Y chromosome was damaged, so they doubled up on the X).
  • Dub Name Change
    • He's known as "Lobezno" ("Wolf Cub") in Spain and in Latin America he's know by many names: "Pantera" ("Panther"), "Guepardo" ("Cheeta"), "Aguja Dinámica" ("Dynamic Needle"), "Aullador" ("howler") and many more. justified in that the Spanish name for the wolverine is "Glotón", which means "Big Eater" and might cause people to think his mutant power is eating stuff.
    • French translators were faced with the same problem: French for "Wolverine" is "Glouton", which has the same meaning as its Spanish transparent counterpart, so for a very long time (until Panini got Marvel's right from Lug), he was known as "Serval" (a big African cat with a great sense of smell), then they simply stopped translating his name. Another publisher (Arédit) did call him "Le Glouton", though.
    • The same problem in Italian has been solved by... not translating his name.
    • The Hungarian translators also faced a problem with his name as the Hungarian word for "Wolverine" is" "Rozsomák" or "Torkosborz", neither of which is very flattering, and said animal is not even indigenous in Hungary. "Rozsomák" sound like it's in plural form (also "rozs" means rye and "mák" means "poppy" in Hungarian. The other word "Torkosborz" means "gluttonous badger" facing the same problem as the Spanish and French translators. They've settled on "Farkas" meaning "Wolf", ironic considering these two are natural enemies.
  • Due to the Dead:
    • In Death of Wolverine: The Logan Legacy #4, Lady Deathstrike assaults a Yakuza hideout to recover the Honor Sword of Clan Yashida, so it could be laid to rest in his memory, in a cemetery Logan had created in Japan for both friend and foe alike.
    • In Death of Wolverine: The Logan Legacy #5, Daken attacks an auction selling parts of Logan's remains to recover them, slaughtering everyone except Viper, Mystique, and a former lover of his, and uses them to hold a proper funeral for his father. Mystique tells him she had attended for the same purpose, minus the bloodshed.
    • Many characters have also been shown honoring Wolverine after his death:
      • X-23 dyes locks of her hair blue and gold (the color of Wolverine's most iconic costume) in his memory.
      • Cyclops reflects on their complex relationship, and gets in a bar fight as the best means he knows of honoring him.
      • Colossus and Nightcrawler take up Logan's annual pilgrimage to Mariko Yashida's grave and pick a fight with a bunch of ninjas.
      • Armor picked a simulated fight with several of Logan's biggest foes in the Danger Room, and stole a beer from his stash intending to drink it. Hellion saved her from being too badly hurt in the former, and talked her out of the latter.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: In his first appearance, his dialogue was similar to that of Spider-Man; snarky and hammy, taunting the Hulk with really bad jokes during the battle. His second appearance (when he was recruited by Xavier) established the attitude most modern fans know.
  • Enemy Within: He constantly struggles to keep his natural animalistic rage from taking over his humanity. The best he can generally manage is to reconcile the parts of his humanity with his beastlike nature.
  • Escaped from Hell: Wolverine has been sent to Hell in the first story of his recent ongoing series. He managed to escape with the help of Alpha Flight member Puck, who was there for some reason. Puck ended up taking over Hell after he and Logan killed the Devil. He later gives up his position to get back to life and save his teammates.
  • Everyone Has Standards: He's not exactly a nice guy, and he admits it, and certainly doesn't shy from killing his foes, but he is generally assumed to have a deep loathing for The Punisher, because the latter is even more of a kill-happy maniac than Wolverine himself. The fact that Garth Ennis wrote a crossover that involved Punisher blasting Wolvie's face off with a shotgun, then shooting him in the balls with the same shotgun, and then running him over with a steamroller, a series of actions that caused Wolverine to swear vengeance on Frank Castle, certainly adds credibility to this theory. This is an extremely Depending on the Writer thing though, as in quite a few other stories he is presented as one of the very few people who can sympathize with Frank and even bails him out when everybody is out to get him (like in Greg Rucka's War Zone).
  • Evil Counterpart:
    • Sabretooth has mostly the same power palette as Wolverine (enhanced senses, healing factor) but is one of the most viciously evil characters in the Marvel universe.
    • Yuriko Oyama, AKA Lady Deathstrike, has essentially the same healing factor and adamantium-laced bones and weapons as Wolverine (finger blades instead of claws), although her healing is the result of extensive cybernetic enhancement. Unlike Logan, she's a mentally-disturbed mercenary, terrorist, and assassin who has a long-standing grudge against Logan.
  • Exposition of Immortality: Wolverine's Healing Factor means his age is hard to pin down. The films of the 2010s have placed his childhood in 1845, and the Wolverine: Origins comic also put his early years in the 19th century, though 35 years later, in 1880. Both spend time exploring his earlier life, firmly placing the character in a time period at least 120 years earlier than the one he currently lives in.
  • Expy: Larry Hama has stated that while it was not doing it consciously at the time, in hindsight he wrote Wolverine essentially as Snake Eyes who can speak. To be fair, several similarities such as having a military past and a deep connection to Japan had already been previously established for Wolverine. How firmly his run has served as foundation for later writers again goes to show how Tropes Are Not Bad.

    F - J 
  • Fastball Special: The Trope Namer. Colossus picking him up and throwing him at enemies debuted in Uncanny X-Men #100 and became a signature move between the two of them.
  • Flanderization: His healing factor sometimes gets pushed up to ridiculous levels, like regenerating instantly from a single cell. Normally, it is indeed powerful enough to restore his health from such things as gunshots or stab wounds, but it can take a very long time, and it's nowhere near as good as those from Hulk, Deadpool or Lobo. It has also been implied that if he has a part of him with bones in it removed, he may not be able to regrow it properly due to the adamantium lacing rest of his skeleton.
  • The Fog of Ages: Part of the reason why so much of his past is a mystery. It's indeterminate how much memory has been erased and how much he simply forgot.
  • Friend to All Children: Wolverine gets a new teenage sidekick about once every decade or so, like Kitty Pryde, Jubilee, and Hisako "Armor" Ichaki. They usually go on to be badasses. He also gets along famously with Katie Power for some reason, and once in a great while a writer remembers he has a foster daughter, Amiko. In fact, his big blowup with Cyclops in Schism came because he absolutely did not want the kid X-Men to lose their innocence by being soldiers for the mutant cause, even if said kids were willing to help with the fight. He went on to reopen Xavier's old school after the event in order to give them a safe haven. Occasionally subverted: he sometimes considers and actively tries to kill children if he's scared enough of them, like Hope, Wiccan, a Teenager Cyclops or a clone infant version of Apocalypse.
  • Genius Bruiser: One of Logan's biggest strengths is his mind. He's been around for well over a century and has spent quite a bit of that time taking in information.
  • Good Parents: His father John Howlett, who never learned that he wasn't biologically Logan's father. Over 100 years later when Logan goes to Hell, he still only refers to Thomas Logan as his biological father, and biological only, and still refers to John Howlett as the only father he ever had.
  • Go-to Alias: Wolverine uses the identity of "Patch" (wearing an eyepatch), a mercenary, when he acts undercover in the Far East.
  • Groin Attack: In one issue of Ultimate X-Men, as Sabretooth tries to drown him, he counters by clawing Sabretooth in the groin.
  • Guttural Growler: He is usually depicted speaking with a deep, gravelly voice in non-comics media. Especially as portrayed by Cal Dodd, Scott McNeil and Steve Blum.
  • Haunting the Guilty: Alluded to when Jubilee has Reno and Molochai, the hitmen who'd killed her parents, at her mercy. Wolverine tells her that one "paff" note  to the brain stem and they'd be dead and it would seem like a regular heart attack, aside from two fairly healthy men experiencing it at the same time. Jubilee protests.
    Jubilee: You've killed people. You've killed so many, and...
    Wolverine: Yeah. You wanna sit up some night and help me talk to all of 'em?
    Jubilee: Oh. (Settles for a Groin Attack on both men.)
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: In Ultimate Wolverine vs. Hulk, the Hulk rips Logan in two at the waist. Not only does Logan survive, he crawls up the mountain he's on to find his legs.
  • Hates Baths: It has been said that he does not bathe often and Wolverine himself went on a diatribe about how much he dislikes being in water due to how he can easily drown. This is very much Depending on the Writer; he's also been shown enjoying Japanese-style bath houses, and has frequently been depicted as a very strong swimmer.
  • Healing Factor: Logan is arguably the Trope Codifier for the fictional type. It kept him alive in conjunction with his adamantium-laced skeleton, and was, in fact, the entire reason why he got the adamantium to start with, as it would take superhuman healing powers to deal with having that much metal in your body in that fashion. Its speed and effectiveness have varied wildly between writers, being anywhere to "injuries heal faster but scar normally" all the way to perfectly healing way-past-3rd-degree burns, massive tissue loss, and other extreme injuries, and taking hours to minutes (or even seconds) to heal from severe trauma.
    • Averted during the "no adamantium" arc; having the metal ripped out of his body over-stressed the healing factor and killed it for a few months of story time. When it finally came back, without the adamantium to slow it down, it essentially overclocked, allowing Logan to at one point completely recover from being run over in a matter of seconds but slowly causing him to revert to a more bestial state. This was taken to an extreme when Cable's evil son Genesis tried to re-implant the adamantium. Logan's body explosively rejected the adamantium, and when he was fully healed he was a monstrous subhuman.
    • Chris Claremont, in particular, was very careful to avert, invert, subvert and otherwise keep this trope from giving Wolverine the effective immortality that he often seemed to have. In one issue, Wolverine is poisoned and badly stabbed by the Silver Samurai, and it's implied that he's risking his life to let Rogue absorb his healing powers because he is so badly hurt. In another issue, Mystique demonstrates that a slit throat will kill Wolverine before his healing factor has a chance to kick in it's being played with there, though, because it is one of Arcade's replicas being killed, and Arcade may not know the full extent of Wolverine's powers.
    • Arguably an Unbuilt Trope. His Healing Factor has several drawbacks (as stated above under Blessed with Suck), one of the most harrowing of which is the fact that anesthesia of any kind will not work on him except at ridiculously high dosages. Thus there is an element of deconstruction present before the trope was fully codified.
    • The one thing the healing factor can't prevent is death by asphyxiation. This is alluded to in one issue of Ultimate X-Men when Sabretooth tries to drown him. Years later, it's proven when Wolverine kills his son Daken by drowning him, and then even later when Logan finally dies from suffocation after being buried in molten adamantium. That said, both of them eventually recovered from these deaths.
    • The Ultimate Marvel version actually crosses over with Adaptive Ability; not only can Ultimate Wolvie regenerate, he can actually reconfigure his body to survive until he heals over. Best displayed in Ultimate Wolverine vs. Hulk, which proves the asphyxiation weakness doesn't work in the Ultimateverse: when Logan is reduced to just a head, he mutates to be able to absorb oxygen and expel carbon dioxide directly through his skin. When Nick Fury puts his decapitated head into a vacuum for shits 'n' giggles, he goes into a life-sustaining stasis. Ultimate Wolverine's mutant power is theorized to be less "Healing Factor" and more "survive anything".
  • Heel–Face Turn: He was almost as bad as Sabretooth before having his memories wiped in the Weapon X Program. The influence of Heather and James Hudson, then Professor X, the X-Men, and the superhero community in general is how he reformed into a better, heroic man.
  • Heroes Want Redheads: One of Logan's defining personality traits, first with Rose from Origin, then Heather Hudson, and especially Jean Grey. In House of M, Mystique (who he is in a relationship with in this reality) says he has a fetish for redheads. And After the End in Old Man Logan, he marries and starts a family with Maureen, who's also a redhead.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: The eponymous Death of Wolverine ends up being because Logan cuts open a pipeline of liquid adamantium that was going to be pumped into another unfortunate victim, saving them from ending up like him. The pain of the heated metal is insane, and, after killing Abraham Cornelius, he suffocates in the adamantium shell, satisfied with what he had done in his life.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Nightcrawler and Colossus, of all people. For a time, had a mix of this and Like an Old Married Couple with Cyclops before tensions flared up again. Oddly enough, he is this less frequently with Gambit, the X-Man with whom has has the most in common with. A good example of how close he and Nightcrawler are is that that Kurt can crash in the notoriously anti-social Wolverine's apartment uninvited, and Logan will come home and not bat an eye. And of course there is Logan's emotional reaction to Kurt's death.
  • Human Weapon: He's Weapon X from the Weapon Plus program which was a black project to make living weapons.
  • Hypocrite:
    • His character has taken this turn in certain comics. He thinks that he should be the only one allowed to do the dirty work, selectively chooses to forgive or scorn people who caused harm while being possessed (even though he was in this very situation himself) and claims that nobody should ever put children in danger, when he has done things like dumping his students in the Savage Land and even repeatedly tried to murder teenagers (Wiccan or Hope for example) when he saw it fitting.
    • In the original X-Men film released in the year 2000, the X-Men are wary of any of their allies who show up from another room/location/etc., being that there is a near-flawless shapeshifter (Mystique) amongst them. When told to prove that he's himself and not Mystique in disguise, he deadpans to Cyclops: "You're a dick." Scott deadpans in return "Okay." It WAS a good tactic to prove his identity (and funny as well), but between the two of them, Logan had definitely been more of "a dick." He has a short temper and is extremely antisocial in the film, and is probably the reason that the feud between Cyclops and himself started to begin with.
    • A late 80s issue of Uncanny X-Men saw Wolverine track down and nearly kill Rachel Summers (Phoenix II), to prevent her from murdering Selene, psychic vampire and Black Queen of the Hellfire Club. Logan stabbed Rachel through the heart, and the only thing that kept Rachel alive was her telekinetics literally holding her guts in. Wolverine cited the X-Men's "no-kill" policy as the reason he did it, but teammate Kitty Pryde was quick to call him out on the utter bullshit of that hypocrisy.
    • Back in the day, he would mock Wonder Man for constantly pining over Scarlet Witch, a married woman who showed no sign of viewing him as anything but a friend. Yeah, that'd be real pathetic, huh Logan?
    • In the two-parter Spider-Man/X-Men crossover episode, he asks Jubilee to let Spidey go because, according to him, Spider-Man is too much of a loner. Beast however, points out that Spider-Man's attitude reminds him of Logan's own, when he first met the team, much to Jubilee's amusement, and Logan's dismay.
  • I Have Many Names: James Howlett, Logan, Weapon X, Wolverine, Patch... He has used "Jim Logan" as an alias in the past, when working as a private detective. Ironically, that is his true name, unbeknownst to him at the time, James being his given name at birth, and Logan being his biological father's last name.
  • I Have No Son!: His biological father tells him this when Logan refuses to be the ruler of Hell. Logan, who already loathes the man, simply claws him in the face and says, "Damn right."
  • Iconic Item: The claws, especially in combination with the gloves that have the chutes the claws extend through.
  • Iconic Outfit: The distinctive brow extensions of his costumes' cowls; even in silhouette they're instantly recognizable.
  • Identical Grandson: Grows up to look exactly like his biological father Thomas Logan. This was used as a Red Herring in the Origin story, with readers initially being led to believe that Thomas' other son Dog was the young Wolverine.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: One of Logan's signature moves, when he's not slicing you to ribbons. He's also on the receiving end occasionally.
  • Imposed Handicap Training: Wolverine once trained under a master samurai to learn how to properly wield a katana. The training regimen included this, where he would regularly spar with that master using a wooden practice blade broken to half length, while the master was Dual Wielding.
  • Immortality Hurts: Logan's healing factor doesn't dampen the pain he feels from injuries, so while the time of the pain may be shortened, its intensity isn't. He's developed a very high pain tolerance, but he doesn't enjoy getting hurt and has said that he has to meditate and focus to control the pain from serious injuries. He's also stated that he has phantom pains after his wounds heal that can linger for months.
  • Immortals Fear Death: After apparently losing his Healing Factor for good in Wolverine #7, Logan is absolutely terrified of dying. Talking to Death herself gets him to come to terms with it, however.
  • Immune to Bullets: Subverted; he can be hurt by getting shot, but the adamantium and healing factor make being killed by getting shot pretty much impossible. He lampshades this in his internal monologue from the first issue of his first solo series, after taking several bullets through the gut from an AK-47:
    The bullets burn like fire. Would've killed anyone else. They just make me mad...which is when things get out of hand. *cue berserker rage*
  • Implacable Man: Together with his Healing Factor, sense of smell, and sheer determination, nothing short of Galactus is going to stop him from tracking someone... and even then only for a little while.
  • Informed Ability: His martial arts prowess. 9 times out of 10 we only see him wildly flailing his claws around, something which requires no skill. Wolverine can't seem to make it out of a fight unscathed and is very dependent on his healing factor.
  • Ironic Name: Chris Claremont conceived of the name Logan as an ironic reference to Wolverine's height. The name Logan was inspired by Mount Logan, the highest mountain in Canada and the second-highest peak in North America.
    The idea was the tallest mountain being the name of the shortest character.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Wolverine is a Jerk with an abrasive personality, a serious anti-authoritarian attitude, and nasty personal habits. At the same time he is a devoted friend with a soft spot for teenagers (particularly girls) and women. He will go out of his way to help the people that need him.

    K - P 
  • Kavorka Man: He's a really short, hairy guy with cigar breath and weird hair. He's never without some hot woman or another after him. It's also been repeatedly stated or implied that he smells bad and rarely bathes. Easily explained by two words: Animal Magnetism.
  • Kick the Dog: Whenever (since he's done it a few times) he tries to kill a teenager, or anyone for that matter, under the excuse that its for the "greater good", tend to come off as this. Especially in All New X-Men when he decides to take out his anger and dislike of Cyclops and bullies the Past!Cyclops, vocally blames him for Xavier's recent death, and publicly humiliates him by threatening to kill him and encouraging someone to give him reason not to and, given how the X-Men still hate him for killing Xavier, no one steps up to stop him, at most looking on disapprovingly (making it a major KTD moment for all the X-Men too), so it continues until Kid!Cyclops tearfully calls him out until finally he's told off by Storm and Beast.
  • The Lancer: Usually takes this role in whatever team he happens to be on at the moment. Attempts to break him out of this into taking the role of The Leader full-on have been made in the last few years. See both Wolverine and the X-Men's TV show and comic book for example. Reception isn't stellar, to say the least.
  • Law of Inverse Fertility: Played straight for a long time. Up until Daken came around, it was only ever implied that Logan had any kids (specificallly, Gahck's baby sony Erista in the 1990 one-shot Wolverine: The Jungle Adventure, and Alpha Flight's Flex). The trope was finally averted in two story arcs:
    • In the Wolverine Goes to Hell arc, part of the emotional torture he undergoes is seeing all his shames and regrets paraded out in front of him, including the undisclosed multitude of children he sired and never cared for.
  • Legacy Character:
    • Jimmy Hudson in the Ultimate Marvel universe.
    • X-23 in the All-New All-Different Marvel Universe following the conclusion of Secret Wars.
    • Laura's clone Gabby Kinney also takes on the mantle in the future shown during the Old Woman Laura arc of the All-New Wolverine.
  • Lonely Bachelor Pad:
    • In one comic, a woman breaks into his apartment and sees that the only thing in it is a pile of old newspapers he uses as a mattress. Possibly justified in that he isn't staying very long.
    • In All-New Wolverine #13, Laura and Gabby hole up in one of Logan's cabins, which they arrive to find a complete wreck, with the only food in the house being a stale loaf of bread a family of mice have turned into an apartment. Laura makes it clear it's not because it's been abandoned since Logan's death; it looked like that when he was still using it. Logan truly was the best there is at what he did, but that wasn't housekeeping.
  • Life or Limb Decision: Played with in one issue from the original self-titled series. Logan ended up captured and with one arm in a huge manacle that he couldn't easily cut he pulled his arm out of the manacle, basically skinning it in the process.
  • Man of Kryptonite:
    • Logan is this to Silver Samurai, as adamantium is one of the few things the Samurai's cutting field can't penetrate.
    • On the other hand, Magneto is this to Logan in both the comics and movies, as adamantium is very susceptible to magnetism and Magneto takes full advantage of this whenever they square off. The only way Logan can effectively fight him is to catch him off guard or when he's distracted, and even then that may not be enough, as Magneto proved when he ripped the metal off Logan's bones even after being badly hurt by Logan a couple of minutes earlier.
  • Morality Pet: His younger sidekicks fall into this by default, although in X-23's case he was the one Defusing The Tykebomb.
  • Mourning a Dead Robot: Wolverine and Jubilee are confronting a group of Sentinels which have achieved sentience. One Sentinel, severely damaged, begins to express a sincere fear over the termination of its existence. Jubilee is moved by the robot's fear of death. Another Sentinel, dubbing itself Unit 3.14159, is puzzled by Jubilee's display of empathy, and rather than continue with its plan to spark a solar flare to roast all life on Earth, it decides that it, and its compatriots, will enter a dormant state while they consider the nature of empathy.
  • Mythology Gag: The blue and yellow colors on his costume is a Shout-Out to the Michigan Wolverines. (It sure isn't supposed to be for camouflage.)
  • My Suit Is Also Super: Very much averted; his costumes (and more often than not, his street clothes) are constantly being destroyed. Interestingly, when he was Brought Down to Normal, he received an armored outfit.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: He has an extremely effective Healing Factor and an adamantium-laced skeleton that's virtually indestructible. That said, the healing factor's effectiveness really varies Depending on the Writer.
  • Noble Male, Roguish Male: The Rogueish Male to Colossus, Cyclops, and Nightcrawler's Noble Males.
  • No Name Given: The only name he had for years was Logan. It was never specified whether this was a first or last name (his driver's license actually read Logan W. Logan). In an issue, he had an identity card which read "Jim Logan", which, if not a Foreshadowing (said issue, if memory serves, was about seven years before he remembered his past in House of M), was at least a hint. He also once used the name "Tom Logan" in the cartoon when infiltrating the Friends of Humanity... also ironic foreshadowing to Wolverine: Origins. His real name is James Howlett.
  • The Nose Knows: His sense of smell is especially enhanced, and gets the most use and mention. He is able to recognize people and objects by scent, even if they are well hidden. He can track a target by scent, even if the scent has been greatly eroded by time and weather factors, with an extraordinary degree of success. Wolverine can also use his keen sense of smell to detect lies due to chemical changes within a person's scent. In one issue where he's strongly implied to have slept with Mystique, he knew it was her from the moment she walked up to him just by her smell.
  • Now It's My Turn: One of the most awesome moments in an already awesome career.
  • Odd Friendship
    • One of his best friends is Puck, a Canadian midget whose power is to throw himself at things.
    • He's also best friends with Nightcrawler, who is about as different from Wolverine as Superman is from Lobo, aside from their mutual love of beer. To wit: Early in his tenure with the X-Men, Nightcrawler was just about the only one of his teammates he admitted to actively liking and any time he was forced to pair off with someone on a mission he almost always requested him.
    • His relationship with Storm, back when it was platonic, has always been this.
    • Is slowly becoming this with both Hercules and Thor, due to all three's shared long life spans, love of battle and love of drinking. Amusingly, he really wishes it wasn't happening with Herc, who remains blithely convinced that it's inevitable.
    • After working together for so long in the Avengers, Spider-Man has become one with him. Peter Parker normally has nothing but contempt for anti-heroes who kill even mooks but he's come to see Logan as often not having a choice. Meanwhile Logan, for all his short-temperedness, is surprisingly tolerant of Peter even when he's in one of his goofier moods.
  • Offing the Offspring
    • The Red Right Hand, a group of former victims or friends and families of some of Wolverine's Mook Horror Show battles, collected and trained a group of Wolverine's unknown offspring to be used as enforcers, then informed him of their lineage after he had already killed them.
    • In X-Force, Sabertooth manipulated Daken and Wolverine into a fight to the death which he knew Wolverine would win. He gleefully reveals this right after Wolverine drowned Daken.
  • Off with His Head!:
    • Invoked in the X-Men comic arc that revealed that Professor X had secret files detailing the ways to take out the X-Men. Wolverine's was described as decapitating him in a way that separates his head and neck fast enough to keep the wound from healing.
    • Subverted in the first solo series issue. During the brawl with the slavers, one actually lands a neck cut with a sword, but it shatters on Wolverine's spine and he gets skewered promptly.
  • Oh, No... Not Again!: Played for drama. The first time James Howlett's claws come out, his mother's response is this, implying that his brother John had claws, too.
  • Omniglot: Wolverine has been shown to be at least conversant in about a dozen languages, including one extraterrestrial and two native American.
  • One-Man Army: He's always been this, but it was most pronounced in the 1990's cartoon and Wolverine and the X-Men (2009).
  • One-Winged Angel: Wolverine's "Devolved" or "Feral" form from the 90s, which was stronger, faster, had an insanely higher healing factor and much sharper senses. The downside was that his mind degraded to a bestial level and he also mutated to look like a hideous, deformed version of himself.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: When he was first introduced, it took some time before his civilian name was revealed. When Nightcrawler questioned him about it when a leprechaun called him "Logan" instead of Wolverine, he just responded "You never asked" with a smirk. And even after remembering his past and his real name, most people that also know it still continue to call him Logan.
  • The Only One I Trust: Wolverine gave Cyclops a sword that would be able to kill him, trusting Cyclops to put him down if necessary.
  • Opposite-Sex Clone: X-23, a.k.a. Laura Kinney.
  • Original Man: Wolverine is revealed to be one of the last living specimens in both Marville and Earth X
  • Our Vampires Are Different: Bloodscream isn't technically a vampire, but a guy who was cursed by a witch to live forever with a blood thirst. The only cure, of course, is Logan's blood.
  • Papa Wolf: Regarding Jubilee and Kitty Pride, most notably, but young girls in general bring this out in him...God help you if you do anything to harm them. It's been suggested this is one of the reasons why Logan makes no effort to conceal his identity as Wolverine. Most heroes, like Peter Parker have close family they need to protect, so concealing their identity is necessary. Others, like Reed Richards have no need, because their loved ones are just as powerful. In Logan's case? Given his typical stance on killing, it's just not good for your health to try and harm his loved ones, so in his case, people knowing he's Wolverine is the best protection he can provide.
  • Parental Substitute: Has been a caring father figure to Jubilee, Kitty Pryde, Armor, and other young X-Men. Ironically, he was a Disappeared Dad to every single one of his actual children.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: His "Patch" alter ego; his disguise was basically just an eyepatch over one eye. In the '80s, Jessica Drew called him out on how blatant the Patch disguise was, and that no-one wanted to be the first to point it out lest they get stabbed in the face.
  • Perma-Stubble
  • Pet the Dog: Logan gets this from Lady Deathstrike in one issue during the "no adamantium" arc, when she learns the metal's gone.
    [Logan retracts his claws, letting Deathstrike see him bleed from the holes in his hands]
    Deathstrike: You're...still bleeding. But your healing factor—
    Logan: It's pretty much used up. As good as gone.
    [Deathstrike hesitantly brushes Logan's forehead with one finger]
    Logan: [internal] For the first time in years, she reaches out to touch me...and the touch is gentle.
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Logan's 5'3". This contrasts him more with his enemy Sabretooth who is 6"6".
  • Platonic Life-Partners: With Psylocke. Formerly with Storm as well, before their Relationship Upgrade in 2013.
  • Popularity Power: Uh, well, he beat Lobo. LOBO. THE GUY WHO FIGHTS ON EVEN FOOTING WITH SUPERMAN. Yeah, it was later handwaved that Lobo took a bribe to lose, but still...
    • The IRL reason he lost is because the winners were determined by readers' votes, and Wolverine got more votes.
    • His rival is Cyclops, a man with Eye Beams powerful enough to crack open a tank. Realistically, every fight between them should be over in a few panels and end with Scott standing over a smoking and unconscious Logan.note  However, because Marvel don’t want to show their patron saint of badassery get destroyed by a man generally seen as boring at best and a whiny prick at worst, Wolverine typically leaps right back to his feet after taking blasts that can knock the side off a mountain, or in some especially egregious moments, holds his claws up in front of his face and just walks into them like they’re a stiff breeze.
  • Power Creep, Power Seep: Originally, Logan's healing factor simply allowed him to heal faster than the average human but it was still possible to kill him. Modern stories have him recovering from being immolated down to a skeleton by an explosion in mere minutes.
  • Protagonist-Centred Morality: The eternal paradox of Wolverine is that he’s popular because he’s a snarly Anti-Hero who slashes his way through corridors full of Mooks; however, because he’s so popular, writers (many of whom are fans of him themselves) are loathe to even imply that he could be in the wrong and sometimes even like to depict him as a moral authority and role model for more straightforwardly heroic characters. This results in a character who frequently acts in a morally ambiguous fashion, yet is consistently depicted as completely right and justified, especially in recent years where Marvel tried to push him as a replacement for Professor X and the next Big Good of the X-franchise while keeping the stabby-hacky-slashy routine that makes him “cool”. It verges on an outright double standard, as other characters generally get taken to task for doing things that Logan gets a pass for. Sometimes by Logan himself.

    Q - U 
  • A Real Man Is a Killer: Subverted. Whilst he is indeed very manly by traditional definitions, and a killer, Logan himself has significant ethical reservations about killing per se and he strongly condemns the killing of innocents. Indeed, his Catchphrase of "I'm the best there is at what I do, and what I do isn't very nice" was originally meant to express his own self-doubt about the morality of his actions. In short, Logan rejects the trope even if he technically fulfills its requirements.
  • Really Gets Around: Logan has been around since the 19th Century, and by "been around" we mean "been around". The hirsute little berserker got more tail than Tony Stark and Matt Murdock combined.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Wolverine's healing factor drastically slows his aging. He was born in the late 1800s.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Sabretooth delivered one to him in the last part of Killable. Even fans agreed it was one of the best Take That! moments a writer ever did indirectly, because much (if not everything) of the statement was absolutely true.
  • Rebellious Spirit: In most continuities he's clearly an anti-authoritarian loner. Subverted in Wolverine and the X-Men (2009) owing to Logan and Scott's exchange of roles. Averted in X-Men: Evolution, where Logan's a Drill Sergeant Nasty combat instructor. Even in the mainstream canon these days, he's now school headmaster.
  • Reckless Gun Usage: During the aforementioned fight with the slavers, one opens up on him with an AK-47 in a crowded room, and Logan notes that the guy doesn't care a whit if he hits anyone else as long as he hits Logan (which he does).
  • Relationship Upgrade: With Storm following the annulment of her marriage to the Black Panther. Whether they're an Official Couple or just Friends with Benefits was never completely established.
  • Reports of My Death Were Greatly Exaggerated:
    Nightcrawler: Where have you been, Logan?
    Wolverine: Dead. But I got better.
  • Required Secondary Powers: Invoked. Early on, the writers (correctly) realized that storing metal blades under your skin and having a metal-plated skeleton would require superhuman healing powers to prevent a slow, painful death from infection and/or blood poisoning... which is the only reason Wolvie got his Healing Factor in the first place. As explained in his backstory, Weapon X's scientists decided to line Logan's skeleton with adamantium because they knew that, with his healing factor, he was one of the few people on Earth that could actually survive the process and put the add-ons to practical use.
  • Ret-Canon: In Ultimate X-Men, set in the Ultimate Marvel universe, Wolverine joins the X-Men with the mission to kill Charles Xavier. Mainstream Wolverine was retconned to have done the same in Wolverine: Origins #29. In his case, Xavier knew it all in advance, and simply altered his mind.
  • Retcon: Wolverine's claws were originally bionic implants... until Magneto pulled the adamantium off his skeleton, revealing that he had been born with bone claws that were infused with adamantium like the rest of his skeleton. This led to part of the Art Shift above regarding the claws' appearance. The original Weapon X storyline hinted at this, noting during the adamantium lacing procedure that an unusual amount of the metal was being drawn into his hands and wrists.
  • Retractable Weapon: His claws popping in and out of his hands.
  • Rigged Spectacle Fight: His first solo series' first issue opens with a fight between the leader of a pirate gang and the captain of a plane that the pirates have captured, with the other pirates and the surviving passengers watching. It's immediately obvious that the fight is meant to be bloodsport, as the pirate is wielding a machete while the captain's arms have been tied behind his back. The captain manages to put up enough of a fight to impress some of the other pirates, but he's eventually overpowered and decapitated by the pirate leader, who makes it clear to some of the female captives that this was done as an example of what could happen if they displease him.
  • Rival Turned Evil
    • Downplayed with Sabretooth, where it's a case of Rival Stayed Evil. They were partners in Team X and had a relationship akin to Teeth-Clenched Teamwork, as even as a Heel, Logan was a Noble Demon while Creed was a monster. Once they went through the Weapon X program and Logan made a Heel–Face Turn, it was open season between them.
    • With Logan and his half-brother Dog, a more straightforward example of the trope is in action.
  • Rogues Gallery: Sabretooth, Lady Deathstrike, Bloodscream, Cyber, Gorgon, Geist, Roughouse, Omega Red, and the Silver Samurai. Two of the rogues were killed by Wolvie's Anti-Healing Factor Vorpal Katana made from the dark area of his soul while Cyber succumbed to carbonadium poisoning, which can be fatal to Logan as well. His son Daken took up Sabretooth's role for a time before Sabretooth resumed it. Now it seems the majority of his anger and loathing is reserved for Cyclops. His half-brother Dog Logan jumped through time to the present day to try and kill James as well.
  • Sadly Mythtaken: The Shiva robots quote that they are Shiva the destroyer, and are so named after Shiva in Hindu Mythology, however, Shiva is not simply the Hindu god of destruction, as destruction refers to the aspect of clearing the way for new growth, or a new cycle.
  • Samurai Shinobi: Wolverine was trained as a samurai and is often associated with numerous samurai-themed superheroes and villains, such as the Silver Samurai and Scarlet Samurai. However, his animal senses and animal-themed abilities also make him a naturally-gifted hunter and stalker, and he has been further trained in covert operations and stealth assassinations. And, as the Trope Namer of Wolverine Claws, he even employs weapons more befitting a ninja.
  • Self-Made Orphan: Killed his biological father for killing the man who he thought was his father. It was his first kill and happened right after his claws appeared for the first time.
  • Self-Mutilation Demonstration: Logan isn't above harming himself or allowing himself to be harmed, either for intimidation purposes or as a way of externalizing his emotional pain. He's pinned his arm to a table with a knife and then picked the table up with that same arm to freak people out, and allowed a biker to punch him in the face with brass knuckles, making a show of re-setting his jaw and eyeball afterward.
  • Serious Work, Comedic Scene: This comic book is a very serious and often grim story with more than a few grisly moments to it, but that's not to say that it's without humor.
    • The Big Crunch story arc (Vol. 2 #51-3) starts with Logan picking up a woman at a local bar. Jubilee follows him and finds him at a motel...and is shocked to find Jean Grey coming out of the motel room. She returns to the Westchester mansion, dejected, until she sees Jean Grey jogging around the mansion, doing her morning workout. Jubilee is ecastatic, embracing Jean, realizing that whoever Logan was with it was someone she could "punch in the nose". note 
    • Wolverine, Rogue, and Jubilee go to the Savage Land to investigate rumors of Magneto being there. Separated from the others, Jubilee runs afoul of some native tribes in the Savage Land, and manages to best them in combat. When Logan meets up with her again on the Blackbird, he's informed that the people of the tribe mistook her for a boy and tried to betroth her to one of their princesses.
  • Shoot the Dog:
    • Subverted in the issue mentioned under Awkward Stoplight Moment above. The killer's wacked-out behaviour causes Logan to associate him with a rabid dog, which for some reason makes Logan unable to kill him, shown as flashbacks to him being unable to put down a rabid pet dog when he was young. After Logan retracts his claws, the killer is shot dead by a female police officer. In talking with her, Logan reveals at the end of the issue that Silver Fox took the gun from him and shot the dog herself.
    • He's actually become famous or infamous depending on who you ask for doing this trope to the point many heroes and squeaky clean types cut him so much slack because he does so when they are not willing. Wolverine was actually recruited into the New Avengers specifically so that they'd have someone willing to shoot the dog on the team. With Captain America, Spider-Man, Luke Cage, and Iron Man on the team at the time, the argument was that they needed a dog-shooter for those situations when a hard morale choice might be necessary.
  • Sidekick: Nightcrawler, Kitty Pryde, then Jubilee, then Armor, then finally X-23.
  • Slap-Slap-Kiss: With any and all of his love interests. The sheer amount of Belligerent Sexual Tension makes you wonder how he actually feels about Cyclops, Northstar and Gambit.
  • Sleeves Are for Wimps: His superhero outfits are typically sleeveless or short-sleeved, and his most common form of civilian dress is a short-sleeved white t-shirt or vest, sometimes under a leather jacket or plaid shirt.
  • Small Town, Big Hell: Wolverine - Saudade: A graphic novel about the X-Man goes to Brazil for vacation, where his motorcycle was stolen by Street Urchins, one of them with a secret. All the story occurs inside the favelas, the ghetto section of Brazilian cities full of delinquence and poverty that work as separated towns inside the cities.
  • Smoking Is Cool: Prior to Joe Quesada vetoing it, Wolverine smoked cigars due to his healing factor preventing/undoing any physical harm it would cause (when he temporarily lost it, he had to quit). In Uncanny X-Men #196, where Logan and Kitty are sitting on some college steps, Kitty gets so sick of his second-hand cigar smoke blowing in her face that she grabs it out of Logan's mouth, takes several puffs... and promptly breaks down in a massive fit of coughing and wheezing.
  • Sociopathic Hero: Much more so in his post-Claremont 1990s->early 2000s appearances than today. The last few years he has turned much more sympathetic since joining the Avengers and caring for the well-being of his students.
  • Soldier Versus Warrior: He’s very much a Warrior compared to Cyclops and Captain America, who are Soldiers.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Wolverine has become a signature example of the trope. This is part of the reason the trope Wolverine Publicity is named after him, since he's given a spotlight even when he's barely there.
  • Strong as They Need to Be: Due to his tendency to appear everywhere and meet everyone, he’s had one-on-one fights with just about every villain and most of the heroes in the Marvel Universe. Also, given his popularity, the fight has to look at least a little competitive. This means that one week he can be shown being taken to his absolute limits by The Punisher, and next week he’s somehow posing a serious threat to the Hulk.
    • The ultimate example of this would be Old Man Logan, where a hallucinating Wolverine kills the X-Men (literally all of the X-Men), despite the fact that many of the X-Men should be able to mulch Logan without even trying, and have in other stories. It’s explained that they were deliberately holding back to avoid killing him, except: a. between them they should have at least a dozen ways of restraining or incapacitating him non-lethally, and b. Wolverine is effectively immortal, so there’s no reason for anyone to hold back against him.
  • Super Drowning Skills: One of the few things that can kill him, given an oxygen-deprived brain does not heal, and his buoyancy is next to none due to the added weight of adamantium in his bones. Note that the comics are inconsistent on this — he's often shown to be a very good swimmer, and after being drowned by Daken, who kept in trapped in a water-filled tank for a prolonged period, he was able to recover after just a few minutes out of the water.
  • Super Reflexes: Logan has heightened reflexes and reaction times, which are tied to his healing factor. In the past he's demonstrated reaction times nearly on-part with Spider-Man's.
  • Super Senses: A side effect of the healing factor is that all of Logan's senses are superhumanly keen, although his sense of smell gets emphasized more than the others. He can see at far greater distances, with perfect clarity, than an ordinary human and retains this same level of clarity even in near total darkness. His hearing is enhanced in a similar manner, allowing him to detect sounds ordinary humans couldn't hear at a greater distances, enough to hear a teardrop in another room that have thick walls with enough focus.
  • Super Strength: Yet another byproduct of his healing factor. Logan's muscles, bones, and connective tissue are all denser than those of a normal human, resulting in enhanced strength. In Logan's case this is even further augmented by his adamantium skeleton: Not only does he need to be stronger to lug around the 100 pounds of metal inside his body ever day, but because his bones are unbreakable he can utilize far more of his muscles' potential than would normally possible.note 
    • Wolverine himself has observed that his healing factor lets him push himself harder during workouts, as his muscles heal, recover, and grow stronger almost as soon as he's finished. Since strength training means damaging muscles so as they grow back stronger, he can work out more often with faster benefits.
  • Superman Stays Out of Gotham: Sabretooth tracks him down every year on his birthday and beats him to within an inch of his life. Despite being friends with some of the most powerful superheroes in the world, and knowing for a fact that his Arch-Enemy would come after him on one specific day every year like clockwork, it never occurred to him to set a trap for Sabretooth or simply ask for backup.
  • Tame His Anger: He tries to do this a lot, but it doesn't last. Notable examples include Wolverine: Origins where Wolverine and Rose work at a mine in British Colombia and Wolverine finds peace and tranquility. That peace is interrupted when Dog shows up and Logan accidentally kills Rose while fighting him. Wolverine later meets a Native American woman called Silver Fox and they fall in love. Sabretooth, jealous of the peace Wolverine found, kills Silver Fox.
  • 10-Minute Retirement: After the events of Fatal Attractions (Marvel Comics), Wolverine feels helpless and confused with his Adamantium gone, sets of bone claws in their place and his healing factor messed up. He decides to leave the X-Men for awhile because of it.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Anti-Heroic to be specific, especially with the more traditionally-heroic Avengers.
  • Token Motivational Nemesis: His biological father Thomas and his half-brother Dog.
  • Tranquil Fury: Despite his usual way of expressing his anger, he will enter this when someone pisses him off so much he regains control, and God help you if you are the one to make him enter this state.
  • Übermensch: He lives by his own morals and does not care what others think about his morality... which has no restraints against killing in certain situations. Thus he fits the trope's requirements of rigidly sticking to a morality that many others often consider at least debatable. On the other hand, he is loaded with self-doubt and plagued by intense guilt about his past, and if he wasn't effectively immortal he might be suicidal. He sticks rigidly to his morality not because he believes it is the best or most ethical, but because it's an anchor to his humanity, knowing that there are still lines he hasn't crossed yet and that he has some traces of goodness in him. He agrees with the people who question his morality; he follows it anyway because it's a compromise between the man he is and the man he wants to be.
  • Unbreakable Bones: The Trope Maker in comic books and perhaps pop culture. His adamantium-laced bones keeps him from getting snapped like a twig, despite all the abuse he takes.
  • Uncle Pennybags: John Howlett, his legal father, a millionaire who was genuinely a kind-hearted Nice Guy, and didn't see any reason to treat poor folk any less compassionately or differently than anyone else, a point of contention between him and his even richer Jerkass father. He gave Rose a dress on Christmas just like her mother would, and when he caught Dog Logan at the window, gave him the toy train intended for young James, who didn't notice as he was playing with his new puppy. Ironically, John's kindess and acts of charity to poor folk made Thomas Logan hate him even more.
  • Unlimited Wardrobe: Wolverine's gone through several costume changes, although most of them have been based on his original costume or his iconic brown/tan costume from the '80s and '90s.
  • Unobtanium: The adamantium coating Wolverine's bones is a very rare commodity. When a villain wanted to give it back to him after he lost it the first time, the metal had to be stolen from another person using adamantium at the time... as his skin.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Whenever he goes into berserker mode... which tends to happen a lot.

    V - Z 
  • Verbal Tic: Wolvie has a habit of calling people "bub", particularly when he's pissed.
  • The Vietnam Vet: Wolverine served in Vietnam, during which he was responsible for torturing Nuke and also brainwashed him into becoming a Manchurian Agent.
  • Villain Protagonist: In the flashbacks of Wolverine: Origins.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Whenever he's not in costume (and sometimes when he is!), his clothes will be removed or destroyed in some fashion, nine times out of ten.
  • Wall Crawl: By poking his claws into surfaces and climbing.
  • Why Am I Ticking?: Recurring character Elsie Dee looks like a cute little girl, even talking with a lisp, but who (unbeknownst to her) is actually a robot whose body is packed with explosives.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: He has a fear of water, as it's very difficult for him to stay afloat due to his adamantium, and drowning can kill him.
  • Wife-Basher Basher: In one of the solo-series issues after the adamantium was removed, he goes after an alcoholic wife beater, who later runs him over.
  • Wolverine Claws: The Trope Namer. A lot of people forget that an early plan for Wolverine was that his gloves contained the claws. The writers eventually decided that that meant anyone could be Wolverine by putting on the gloves, and made it so that they were inside his body.
  • The Worf Effect:
    • Occasionally, a writer will remember that Wolverine is supposed be be barely above normal in terms of raw power and will have a much stronger or faster character stomp him in a matter of panels, i.e. the Thing punching him clear through two buildings, Superior Spider-Man effortlessly dodging his swing and smashing his head into concrete, Molly Hayes laying him out with a single punch, etc.
    • He once got into a fight with Wonder Man, who is one of Marvel’s heavy hitters, yet also kind of a second tier character and not exactly a mainstream name. Typical comic book logic would suggest a brief, fairly even skirmish. Simon delivered an absolute beating to Logan, with every hit sending him flying. Wolverine was utterly helpless, never got a shot in or even managed to pop his claws. The fight is eventually broken up by Thor, who is actually in Wonder Man’s weight class, but it does realistically depict how a fight would actually go between a man of above average but relatively normal physical capabilities whose primary offensive move is stabbing; and someone orders of magnitude stronger, who by his very nature is immune to being stabbed, and, given that his opponent would be fine in a few hours anyway, would feel no obligation to hold back.
  • World's Best Warrior: Wolverine isn't the best soldier (that would be Captain America), he's not the best fighter (that's split between Iron Fist and Shang-Chi), he's not the World's Strongest Man (that's usually the Hulk) and he's not a Person of Mass Destruction or Physical God. However, he is good enough to put up a fight against all of that, making him one of the MU's most dangerous men.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Logan generally detests violence against women, but that goes out the window when it comes to the women in his Rogues Gallery and other similarly lethal female opponents. Lady Deathstrike, the Viper, Lady Mastermind, Mystique, and even Rachel Summers can attest to that. Averted with Storm, although she saw during one of their blowups in the 80s that he was prepared to thrown down with her if that's what it came to.

Alternative Title(s): Wolverine Origin, Wolverine 1988, Wolverine 2003, Dark Wolverine, Daken Dark Wolverine, Wolverine Weapon X, Wolverine 2010, Wolverine 2013