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Tropes beginning with the letters A to C for the X-Men Film Series.


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  • Absurdly Sharp Blade:
    • Logan's and Laura's claws, of course.
    • X2: X-Men United: Lady Deathstrike's fingernails (or talons, if you prefer) are made of adamantium and can effortlessly slice through everything in their way.
    • X-Men Origins: Wolverine:
      • Wolverine's claws, which are coated in adamantium. Shortly after he receives his adamantium infusion, he slices up several items in a farmhouse bathroom (including a porcelain sink) with his now impossibly sharp claws, despite applying what appears to be no more than the force required to move an unrestrained arm.
      • Wade Wilson's katanas.
    • The Wolverine:
      • The heirloom katana that Yukio brings with her to meet Logan is able to cleanly slice barstool legs and a beer bottle, without harming the man on the stool or the guy holding the beer bottle.
      • Ichirō Yashida's samurai swords which actually cut through Wolverine's claws.
    • Deadpool (2016): Deadpool's katanas are able to cut through anything he uses them on in the movie with no effort on his part, with the only exception being the axes Ajax uses against him.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Psylocke's psionic blade can slice through a car as if it were a hot knife cutting butter.
  • Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene:
    • X-Men: Wolverine talks to Rogue on the train to convince her that she can find a place at Xavier's school.
    • X2: X-Men United: Bobby Drake's strained relationship with his family after he reveals to them that he's a mutant provides some dramatic heft to the story.
    • X-Men: The Last Stand: There's a scene where Logan catches Rogue leaving to get the cure, and he asks her if she's sure that's what she truly wants, and if she's doing it for the right reasons.
    • X-Men: First Class: The many quiet talks between Charles and Erik about the latter's past and potentials as well as their differing views on human-mutant relations clinch how tragic their fall-out and eventual parting is.
    • The Wolverine: Logan develops a romance with Mariko.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: There are plenty of emotional, character-driven moments (especially with the younger Xavier) in between the spectacular action sequences.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: There are scenes dedicated to familial connections and friendships, such as Erik and Nina, Charles and Jean, Jean and Scott, etc.
  • Action Girl:
    • Jean Grey fights both up close and at a distance.
    • Storm is one of the most powerful X-Men because of her weather-summoning ability.
    • The Wolverine:
      • Yukio introduces herself in a bar brawl and proves competent enough to protect Logan. She later helps him fight Viper.
      • Mariko is proficient in soft-handed martial arts and an excellent knife-thrower, helping to kill the Silver Samurai.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Blink's portal powers make her extremely effective in fighting the Future Sentinels, both in taking them out herself and assisting her teammates in fighting them.
    • Deadpool (2016): Negasonic Teenage Warhead winds up being the one to deliver the defeating blow to Angel Dust.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • Mystique knocks out a few guys who are bigger than her in East Berlin. She later becomes the battle commander of the X-Men.
      • Jean Grey unleashes the full power of the Phoenix and obliterates Apocalypse, who can only marvel at her power.
      • An unarmed Agent Moira MacTaggert, who is covered in a niqab that hinders her movements somewhat, is able to disarm a man larger than she is and render him unconscious.
    • Logan: Laura is 11 years old, but is able to tear through hardened soldiers twice her size with aplomb.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job:
    • Professor X in the comics was blond before he lost his hair, but his movie counterpart is a brunet.
    • In the comics, Magneto has been shown to have had white hair for the vast majority of his adult life, presumably as a side-effect of his mutation. In the movie-verse, he has dark brown hair as a younger man.
    • Viper is blond rather than green-haired like in the comics.
    • Weasel has light brown hair instead of his usual black.
    • Psylocke's hair is purple in the comics, but her movie counterpart is raven-haired with purple highlights.
  • Adaptation Name Change:
    • Pyro's name is changed from Saint-John Allerdyce to the Americanized John Allerdyce.
    • Silver Fox has her name changed to the more Canadian-sounding "Kayla Silverfox." She was also apparently given a Race Lift, as she's played by the very light-skinned Lynn Collins, who claims to have distant Native ancestry, but otherwise looks nothing like Silver Fox.
    • MacTaggert is Moira's maiden name instead of Kinross. She got married and divorced within the 21-year gap between X-Men: First Class and X-Men: Apocalypse, and she is referred to as Agent MacTaggert before her marriage and after her divorce.
    • Mariko's fiancé has his name changed from "Noburo Hideki" to "Noburo Mori," possibly because, although an actual Japanese name, Hideki is a given name, not a family one.
    • Quicksilver's real name is changed from "Pietro Maximoff" to the more Americanized "Peter Maximoff." Presumably, this is due to the fact that the film version of Quicksilver was raised in the U.S., while his comic counterpart grew up in Eastern Europe. A supplementary website, 25 Moments, still refers to him as Pietro and so does the Italian dub.
    • Magneto had a daughter named Anya in the comics, but her name is Nina in the movie-verse.
  • Adaptational Attractiveness: Has its own page.
  • Adaptational Badass:
    • The comic book version of Pyro was a Laughing Mad pyrokinetic who was hamstrung by his inability to create flames, relying on an unwieldy pair of flame throwers with very prominent fuel lines. Naturally, he was often very easily hamstrung. In the films, he's perfectly rational, albeit a bit temperamental, and he now only relies on a lighter, which in X-Men: The Last Stand, he attached to his glove, allowing maximum firepower with minimum inconvenience.
    • Quicksilver is one of the fastest characters in the Marvel comics universe, but he has limitations on just how fast, and is generally well under the speed of sound. In X-Men: Days of Future Past, Hank mistakes him for a teleporter, and fans have noted that Peter's Super Speed and power set (he's capable of redirecting bullets with ease and shattering glass by vibrating his hands) are closer to The Flash, who explicitly has a speed advantage over Quicksilver in inter-company crossover stories. It's taken Up to Eleven in X-Men: Apocalypse because he rescues all of Xavier's students from an explosion in only a fraction of a second. Maximoff is one of the most powerful mutants in the whole X-Men film franchise.
    • X-Men: In the comics, Toad was originally conceived as a deformed, sniveling hunchback who served as The Igor to Magneto. His super power was he could hop... really high because of having very low-grade super-strength concentrated in his legs. However, stuntman Ray Park played him as a wisecracking martial artist with wall-crawling abilities and a tongue that he could use as a whip, thus making him more capable of holding his own in a fight with the X-Men. Also, he could spit slime projectiles.
    • The Wolverine: Mariko Yashida is a much more capable and physical badass than her comic book counterpart.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: In the comics, the Sentinels are just Humongous Mecha, and mutants with strong powersnote  usually take them down by the dozen. They are portrayed as such in the 1973 portion of the film as well. The future Sentinels, however, with their ability to duplicate mutant powers to counter their opponents, are so overwhelmingly powerful that any fight with them is considered outright hopeless.
    • Deadpool (2016):
      • The comic book iteration of Negasonic Teenage Warhead is a psychic with the powers of telepathy and precognition, neither of which really warrant the over-the-top name. Made significantly more fitting in the film, since she has the power to emit extremely powerful waves of heat energy, like Cannonball.
      • In the comics, Angel Dust could only get short bursts of strength due to her adrenaline. In the movie, her strength is permanent and she clearly has superhuman stamina to go with it, allowing her to fight Colossus in hand-to-hand combat on even terms (which the comic character never did).
  • Adaptational Heroism:
    • The film series portray Professor X as being more noble and sympathetic than his comic book counterpart, who personifies Good Is Not Nice and is a Manipulative Bastard—one of Kitty Pryde's most famous lines is "Professor Xavier is a jerk!" The movie franchise takes the opposite route because Charles is a Guile Hero, one of its nicest characters (he's The Cutie in X-Men: First Class and X-Men: Apocalypse), and even when he occasionally makes the wrong choice, it's understood that he only had the best of intentions. As a result, the cinematic interpretation is much more likable relative to the comics', and Xavier was purposefully adapted in such a way that he became Bryan Singer's favourite X-Men character (who is a big sci-fi fan and isn't a comic book reader).
    • Unlike the Rogue of the comics and most other adaptions, she ends up at Xavier's school from the very beginning and is never a former member of the Brotherhood.
    • Iceman is much sweeter and more mature than his comic book counterpart's Jerk with a Heart of Gold/Manchild persona.
    • The Wolverine:
      • Harada. In addition to pulling a Heroic Sacrifice to save Logan, he's far less of a Jerkass than his comic counterpart, who is a foreigner-hating bigot.
      • Yukio was much more morally ambiguous in the comics (especially in earlier appearances, where she was a mercenary/assassin/thief) than in the movie.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • Mystique is given a very realistic and sympathetic motivation for her Start of Darkness moment, in contrast to her depiction in the comics. It goes so far as to establish that prior to killing Bolivar Trask, she'd never taken a single life during one of her crimes. And additionally, she pulls a Heel–Face Turn and not only spares Trask, but rescues the president from Magneto during the climax. Presumably, this negates her role as a villain in the original trilogy via Cosmic Retcon.
      • In the comics, Quicksilver is often an outright jerk (often intentionally), but in this film, he's more of a merry mischief-maker. He can easily flee on his own once the breakout goes bust, but instead, he goes out of his way to save Logan, Charles and Erik, even though he had already freed the latter from prison by technicality. Quicksilver is also clearly not impressed (if amused) by the idea that he helped free the person suspected of killing JFK once he finds out, and is shown to be stunned and horrified by Magneto's "demonstration" in the climax.
    • Deadpool (2016): While Deadpool is still a Heroic Comedic Sociopath, his love for Vanessa is presented as his biggest redeeming factor, and the movie goes to great lengths to show that he would never hurt anyone who doesn't deserve it. Contrast that with the comics, where Deadpool sleeps around constantly, and he has been known to work for supervillains on the odd occasion.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • Mystique, a villain in the comics and in the original trilogy, has been traveling the world rescuing mutants following the events of Days of Future Past, and she becomes the field leader of the X-Men. She insists that she's not a hero, though.
      • Comic book Quicksilver was never a member of the X-Men, but his movie counterpart is. He also expresses his veneration for Mystique's courage in defeating Magneto—his own father—and preventing the latter from assassinating President Nixon.note 
  • Adaptational Nationality:
    • X2: X-Men United: The Australian Saint-John Allerdyce from the comics has been adapted to an American without the "Saint" in his given name.
    • X-Men: First Class:
      • Sean Cassidy and Moira MacTaggert are American, but in the comics, they were Irish and Scottish respectively.
      • In the comic books, Charles Xavier is fully American, but this movie establishes that he's half-British through his mother, and therefore he may possess dual USA/UK citizenship.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: The Eastern European Pietro Maximoff has been Americanized into Peter Maximoff.
    • Deadpool (2016): Ajax is English rather than American.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy:
    • The movie version of Bobby Drake is much sweeter and more mature than his comic book counterpart's Jerk with a Heart of Gold/Manchild persona.
    • In The Wolverine, Harada is far less of a Jerkass than his comic counterpart, who is a foreigner-hating bigot.
    • Logan's version of Zander Rice is nicer than his comics counterpart. They both see Laura as a weapon, but comics Rice also delighted in torturing her and went out of his way to make her life pure hell.
  • Adaptational Superpower Change: The films change a lot of the characters' powers:
    • While Mystique's blue skin, red hair, and Shapeshifting abilities all come from the comics, her film counterpart is the first iteration of her being reptilian in appearance, like a chameleon.
    • X-Men: The Last Stand:
      • To streamline the story, the Phoenix is just an aspect of Jean's mind and superpowers instead of a cosmic entity. Technically, this can also qualify as an odd case of Composite Character.
      • Callisto is given the powers of superspeed and a mutant tracking sense that she does not have in the comics.
      • Part of Leech's mutation in the comics is his green skin and huge yellow eyes. In this movie, he retains his ability to suppress other mutant's abilities, but he appears as a normal human kid.
    • X-Men: First Class:
      • Shaw's powers in the comics is absorbing energy to boost his personal strength and stamina; in this film, he is able to absorb energy and then repurpose it in seemingly any way he wants, up to and including causing devastating explosions.
      • Azazel is a literal immortal demon in the comics with an assortment of near god-like powers. In the movie-verse, he is a red-skinned mutant with a demon-like appearance and the power to teleport. He basically serves as an evil expy for his son Nightcrawler, who hadn't yet been born in continuity.
      • Riptide in the comics created whirlwinds by spinning his whole body, and he could also fling calcified projectiles from his body like shuriken or spikes. His film counterpart isn't gifted with the second ability.
    • The Wolverine: Both Yukio and Viper are normal humans in the comics, but in this film, Yukio is given the mutant power to see into the future, while Viper is given snake-like abilities. Interestingly, Harada, who is a mutant in the comics, is turned into a normal human in this movie. Note that this technically also qualifies as Adaptation Species Change because frequently in the X-Men world, humans (homo sapiens) and mutants (homo superior) are different species.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Kitty Pryde, resident intangible girl of the X-Men inexplicably gains the power to project people's consciousness backwards through time. This is because her role is combined with that of Rachel Summers from the comics, who does not have a film counterpart, seeing as both her parents are dead in that continuity. Also, the filmmakers were hesitant to create a new character with time travel powers because 1) they wanted to honor the original ''Days Of Future Past'' storyline by including Kitty Pryde in the story with an important role, and 2) the movie already has a rather large cast, and introducing another character would've put narrative strain on the plot.
    • Deadpool (2016): In the comics, Negasonic Teenage Warhead has Psychic Powers and her name is a music Shout-Out. The movie version gets a "warhead" power to cause explosions instead. Essentially, she's a Composite Character with the character Cannonball.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • In the comics, the purple energy blade Psylocke projects from her hand is simply a manifestation of her telepathic powers, and it can't do any physical damage. In the movie, the blade cuts through steel and concrete, and Psylocke can also morph it into a whip.
      • One of the comic book Apocalypse's main powers is total control over every molecule in his body, which means he can't be hurt by mere physical force. In the film, he doesn't seem to have this power, as evidenced by the way he dies.
  • Adaptational Ugliness: Downplayed with Ian McKellen's Magneto. While not ugly by any means, he's considerably older than the character in the comics and much less physically imposing. While Magneto was buff and chiseled in the comics, in the original trilogy, his white hair is the result of him being seventy-something years old. Justified, since the movies don't have the comics' sliding timescale or the multiple instances of him being de-aged and re-aged, so he had to be a realistic age for a Holocaust survivor. This gets rectified when you see Michael Fassbender's Erik Lehnsherr in X-Men: First Class, where his younger self is conventionally handsome.
  • Adaptational Villainy:
  • Adorkable:
    • X2: X-Men United: Nightcrawler loves to give (often interrupted) long-winded introduction speeches, playfully spies on secret meetings, and awkwardly flirts with Storm.
    • X-Men: First Class:
      • Charles Xavier was a cute geek during his childhood, as demonstrated by the framed pictures of his favourite scientists next to his bed. As an adult, he uses his nerdy knowledge to woo girls at bars.
      • Hank McCoy. Soft spoken, stutters, asks Raven out on the pretext of getting a blood sample and then apologizes for being forward.
    • Deadpool (2016): Colossus' first couple scenes have him eating cereal out of a bowl at least three sizes too small for him and lecturing his ward on the importance of eating breakfast in the morning. Near the end of the film, he catches a ride with Deadpool in Dopinder's cab—he's squished in the backseat next to Negasonic Teenage Warhead, and he's casually sipping a drink from a cup that's probably normal-sized, but comically small in his giant hands.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • This is Kodi Smit-McPhee's assessment of Nightcrawler from the May 2016 issue of Empire.
        "Kurt's an affectionate, cute character. He's almost a cute animal to me. [...] He's awkward and weird and amazing in a different way."
      • When Charles meets Moira at her office, he acts like a nervous and love-struck teenager, and the frequent fumbling of his words embarrasses Alex.
      • Hank stammers when he unexpectedly sees Raven again for the first time in a decade.
  • Adrenaline Time: In X-Men: Apocalypse, Quicksilver's Super Speed scenes are shown this way; he sees everything in slow motion, but the movie will quickly alternate to the "standard perception" of time, which is much faster.
  • Adult Fear:
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • A large explosion which can decimate an entire school when class is in session is any parent's nightmare. It's only because of Quicksilver's intervention that the death toll is nowhere near as high as it could've been.
      • In Erik's case, it's the death of his wife and daughter by police officers.
  • Advertised Extra:
    • X-Men: The Last Stand:
      • Cyclops' screen time is greatly reduced because of James Marsden's other commitments.
      • Angel is featured heavily in all the promotional material, as part of the whole "the original X-Men team in the comics finally together in film." He only has three scenes: he refuses the cure and flies away; he very briefly shows up at the X-Mansion for the sole purpose of allowing them to state categorically that the school is still open; and finally he saves his father's life during the final battle. He does nothing in between. The promo posters even showed Angel in an X-Men uniform despite the fact that he never officially joins the team (or dons a costume) during the movie.
      • The same can be said of Colossus — he has one line (which is about as long as both of his two lines in X2: X-Men United combined) and he's really only in the film for the Fastball Special.
    • X-Men Origins: Wolverine: Gambit has limited screen time, but manages to do a few things (sets/stops a fight between Logan and Sabretooth, takes Logan to the enemy base, and saves Logan in a Big Damn Heroes moment).
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Anna Paquin as Rogue has a total of one scene (and a handful of seconds at that) in the theatrical release. She even got her own Empire magazine cover despite the fact that most of her scenes were cut from the final film.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Jubilee got a fair amount of focus in the advertising along with the co-stars who played the new recruits Cyclops, Jean, and Storm. In the middle of the movie, it looks like she's going to be on the same squad of rookies with Cyclops, Jean, and Nightcrawler, even going with them on their teen rebel mall trip as a heroic team of four to contrast the Horsemen. Then she gets knocked out and left behind at the mansion in the next scene, leaving the others as a Power Trio instead.
  • Age Lift:
    • In the comics, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Iceman, Beast, and Angel are roughly the same age, being the "First Class" with Beast as the eldest. In the movies, Iceman and Angel are quite a bit younger than Cyclops and Jean, and Beast is older than all of them, having a couple of decades on Scott and Jean.
    • X-Men Origins: Wolverine presents Bolt as a contemporary of Agent Zero, as opposed to his protégé.
    • In addition to Beast, by deciding to avoid Comic-Book Time with X-Men: First Class and X-Men: Days of Future Past, several characters are older than the main cast in the original trilogy. There's Havok, who's Cyclops' younger brother in the comics; Darwin, who's the same age as Havok and hence younger than the First Class of the comics; Quicksilver, Riptide and Emma Frost, who are the same age as the present day characters in the comics; Shaw, who isn't as long-lived as his movie counterpart; and Angel Salvadore, who's in fact younger than most of the characters in the original trilogy. The future of DoFP also does this to Bishop and his counterpart in the comics, who still has yet to be born in the present, yet his movie self is teammates with Blink, Sunspot, and Warpath.
    • Iceman and Pyro are closer in age to Cyclops and Jean in the comics, yet their movie counterparts are younger, and Banshee was an adult when he joined the X-Men in the comics. Mystique is a couple of years younger than Professor Xavier in the movies whereas her comics counterpart is roughly the same age as Wolverine.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • It retcons away the X-Men: The Last Stand version of Angel, making him around the same age as Cyclops, Jean, and Storm as in the comics. It also retcons Jubilee into their classmate, as opposed to being a generation younger than them.
      • Inverted with Nina (the Adaptation Name Change for Anya), who in the comics is Magneto's eldest child, but in the movie-verse, Quicksilver is. Nina is at least 18 years younger than Peter Maximoff.
  • Agent Peacock: When Professor X still has hair, his porcelain doll-like face and nurturing personality make him the most androgynous male lead of the franchise. He's the most formidable telepath on Earth who can kill anyone with a thought, and he carries a streak of vanity which is a product of his upper-class upbringing (his mother was a haughty British Socialite). Even after he becomes bald and loses his prettiness, he still adorns himself in snazzy suits. Saving the world is hard work, and he wants to look good doing it. Heck, Patrick Stewart even admits on the "Two Worlds, Two Battles" documentary of The Rogue Cut that his character "has been seen as something of a peacock over all these years," so Xavier is more accurately a Professor Peacock.
    • X-Men: First Class: Charles is a suave womanizer who is perfectly aware of how appealing he is, and he doesn't allow Hank to shave his head when he tests the Cerebro prototype ("Don't touch my hair"). He's the sole mutant who is strong enough to stop Shaw single-handedly, provided that the latter isn't wearing a telepathy-blocking helmet. (Even Erik, as mighty as he is, gets clobbered by Sebastian during their duel.)
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Professor X is the second-most powerful mutant for most of the story, and his androgyny (in both looks and personality) is taken up a notch in comparison to First Class. He graduates from a Pretty Boy to a Long-Haired Pretty Boy, and the name of his hairdo, a feathered mullet, brings to mind a peacock's tail—he even fixes a handful of loose strands shortly before he reaches Moira's office. He's pushing 50, yet he still takes delight in being hip and attractive by following '80s fashion trends with a Miami Vice-inspired wardrobe. Xavier fully embraces being a sensitive guy, as he's more overtly "maternal" towards his students and he freely sheds Tender Tears. He was close to death after a botched Grand Theft Me procedure just a few minutes beforehand, yet Charles still has the fortitude to instigate a Battle in the Center of the Mind against the Nigh Invulnerable Apocalypse, being one of only two mutants who dishes out multiple blows on the self-proclaimed god. Xavier is so vain that even when he's already bald, his mental projection has a head full of hair during the psychic brawl.
  • Allegorical Character: Across the First Class series, Professor X represents empathy, and depending on the story, he can also be a figure of peace, hope or love. For X-Men: First Class, he's emblematic of serenity, and without his participation during the Cuban Missile Crisis, the planet would've plunged into World War III (no Charles = no peace). For X-Men: Days of Future Past, his 1973 self must regain hope, otherwise by 2023, mutantkind is doomed to extinction (a hopeless past Xavier = a hopeless future for mutants). For X-Men: Apocalypse, his love is the only thing that can conquer fear (Jean Grey's trepidation over her Phoenix Force disappears when she senses the utmost trust the Professor has in her), hate and anger (the last two are felt by Magneto, but once he recalls how much he loves his old friend, he betrays Apocalypse); in this case, Charles = The Power of Love.
    • Furthermore, Xavier's emotional state is a metaphor for America's mindset during the time period these movies depict. In 1962, the character's optimism is an extension of the hopeful outlook President Kennedy's administration tended to exude, whereas Charles' melancholia in 1973 is not unlike the general malaise American citizens felt while under the shadow of The Vietnam War. Xavier's descent into despair began in 1963, which is the same year Kennedy was assassinated—the end of "Camelot"note  parallels the end of Professor X's school. At least in the Alternate Timeline, Charles starts to piece himself together again shortly after the Paris Peace Accords are signed. The '80s in the USA was an era of excess and materialism (both were regarded as not just acceptable, but desirable), so Xavier's vanity is at its peak in 1983, and we get to see much more of his lavish estate and everything he owns within its boundaries. The combination of his smug demeanour, dressing like he had just stepped off the set of Miami Vice, and driving around in a gorgeous, well-maintained vintage car announces to everyone that "I'm beautiful, I'm rich, and I love it."
  • Alliterative Name: Scott Summers, Moira MacTaggert, Warren Worthington III, Betsy Braddock, Wade Wilson, Sebastian Shaw, Francis Freeman.
  • All There in the Script: Some characters are never named.
    • X-Men: Averted. In his commentary, Bryan Singer specifically mentions that he remembered that he had to namedrop Toad and Mystique, lest they just be the "nameless minions of Magneto."
    • X2: X-Men United: The movie never namedrops "Lady Deathstrike," although she is called Yuriko and she's still listed as Deathstrike in promotional material.
    • X-Men: The Last Stand: The Asian mutant with the purple hair is identified as Psylocke in the commentary, but is never called that (or her civilian name, "Betsy") onscreen.
    • X-Men: First Class: Riptide's name only appears in the end credits.
    • The Wolverine: Mariko's grandfather is never referred to by his full name, Ichirō Yashida. He's simply called "Yashida" or "Grandfather" for most of the film.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: A viewer who doesn't read comic books wouldn't know that Erik's wife is named Magda.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us:
    • X2: X-Men United: General Stryker's forces take over Xavier's school, which is also the X-Men's base of operations.
    • X-Men: First Class: The group move into Xavier's mansion after their previous HQ, a CIA compound, is attacked and destroyed by the Hellfire Club.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: In The Rogue Cut, Trask Industries have commandeered the X-Mansion, using it to experiment on mutants.
  • Alternate Continuity: Several of them.
  • Alternate History:
  • Alternate Timeline: Marvel's databases officially list Logan as occurring in an alternate timeline to the post-Cosmic Retcon Days of Future Past timeline, meaning that Mutants officially got something resembling a happy ending in the prime timeline, and the same happened in another, only for it to be taken away.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Mystique, Nightcrawler, Beast, and Apocalypse are different shades of blue. Azazel and a Horseman in Ancient Egypt who kills two traitors by ripping the flesh from their bodies are red. Toad's skin has a greenish hue.
  • Amplifier Artifact: The Cerebro supercomputer boosts telepathy.
  • Anachronic Order: Ever since X-Men: The Last Stand made it easier to go with prequels. X-Men Origins: Wolverine preceded the original trilogy, then X-Men: First Class preceded that (while also following the World War II opening flashback of the first movie), The Wolverine was a sequel to The Last Stand (with the opening being set in WWII as well), and then X-Men: Days of Future Past acted as a sequel to both The Wolverine and First Class simultaneously due to Time Travel. X-Men: Apocalypse follows the "past" timeline as well, albeit in an Alternate Timeline.
  • Anachronism Stew:
    • X-Men: First Class:
      • The film is set during the Cuban Missile Crisis, but characters walk around in modern haircuts while warships (some of which weren't active until the 1980s) fire Tomahawk cruise missiles at them.
      • Shaw/Schmidt plays "La Vie en rose" by Édith Piaf in the concentration camp in 1944, despite the song not being written until 1945 or released as a single until 1947.
      • Despite taking place in the early '60s, nobody ever comments on Angel's or Darwin's race, although them being a double minority is subtly alluded to by Shaw.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • Mystique ends up getting hit with a Taser in both the original and altered events of 1973, a year before Jack Cover invented the device.
      • Hank has created a serum capable of both restoring Charles' mobility and specifically silencing a gene; both feats are still being researched today, and this film takes place in 1973, when genomics was just starting to grow as a field. It's implied that Hank has a boost from Raven's DNA.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: A minor example occurs in a tie-in commercial, which suggests that the students have access to fiber-optic internet, widescreen computers and modern cars in The '80s.
  • And I Must Scream:
    • X2: X-Men United: Stryker's mind control serum makes the victim obedient, but their real self is still in there, fully aware and incapable of controlling their own body. Look at the sheer horror on Deathstryke's face when the serum controlling her briefly wears off. Particularly when she looks at her hands and remembers the pain of being bonded with adamantium, likely because she was being controlled during that process as well. Scott similarly tells Jean he couldn't stop himself from trying to kill her.
    • X-Men Origins: Wolverine: Wade Wilson's fate. He turned from a nice-looking, fast-talking, somewhat funny guy to a pale, disfigured person. He has no hair and his mouth was sewn shut. He got all the powers of the mutants Weapon X captured, but he was completely under their control with no free will.
    • X-Men: First Class: The death of Sebastian Shaw. He's held immobile while a coin is pushed slowly through his skull. Xavier, who's psychically linked to Shaw in order to hold him immobile, does the screaming instead.
    • Deadpool (2016): In the final attempt to activate Wade's powers, Ajax sticks him in a decompression chamber designed to keep him suffering on the edge of suffocation, then leaves him there for a weekend. After it succeeds, Ajax decides to leave him in there even longer, just because he likes Wade suffering.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Apocalypse seals the street vendor into a wall when the guy threatens Ororo, so just his eyes (which are still moving) are visible.
  • And Starring:
  • Animal-Themed Superbeing:
    • Wolverine embodies the ferocity of the animal he uses for his codename.
    • Toad possesses some toad-like traits, such as an Overly Long Tongue and being able to hop from one place to another at distances which are far greater than what a regular human can achieve.
    • Viper has an animal alias and its abilities (viper is a family of venomous snakes).
  • Annoying Younger Sibling:
    • X-Men: First Class: Raven is jealous of Amy, a woman her foster brother Charles is flirting with, so she activates her shape-shifting skill to pretend to have heterochromia. Raven knows that Charles is terrified at the prospect of his younger sister being outed as a superpowered mutant, so it forces him to abruptly end his conversation with Amy. As the siblings are walking away from the pub, Charles is exasperated at Raven for ruining his potential date.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Alex either rolls his eyes or ignores his younger brother Scott whenever the latter complains or is impolite.
  • Anti-Hero:
  • Arc Symbol: The film series features many instances of X symbols.
  • Artistic License – Biology:
    • The series has a whole collection of offenses. Mutants cannot be called another species, given that they can still interbreed freely with normal humans. Even if you don't have a biology diploma, it ought to be obvious that there could be no universal "cure" that suppressed all the flashy mutations (but not "regular" ones like, say, heterochromia?) on any given mutant without affecting anything else, and certainly not in a matter of seconds.
      • Different species can interbreed, though- example: lions and tigers. And the "cure" works by suppressing the X-gene, the cause of paranormal mutations. Standard mutations like heterochromis are caused by different genes. Of course, it still fails biology because, well, there's no X-gene in real people, and one gene is unlikely to cause, y'know, superpowers. But it does make sense in context.
    • Incidental dialogue (particularly Pyro during X2) mentions "the X-gene", implying that all modern Mutations (the controversial superpower kind) stem from a single gene that appeared at some point during human history and slowly proliferated until becoming widely apparent in recent years. The Sentinels also have detectors of said gene.
  • Artistic License – Geography:
    • X-Men: There is no Laughlin City within the province of Alberta.
    • X-Men: First Class: There's a scene where Erik kills some bad guys that supposedly takes place in the Argentinian city of Villa Gesell. The establishing shot shows snowy mountains and a beautiful lake surrounded by hills; the only problem is, although you can find a lot of cities that look like that in the southern part of the country, the real Villa Gesell is a beach city located nowhere near that area. The shot resembles the Argentinian city of Villa La Angostura where, according to legend, some Nazis hid away after World War II with the help of President Perón. So the mistake wasn't that big, but it was extremely hilarious for the Argentinian public.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: The Pentagon is definitely not in Washington, DC. It's across the Potomac in Arlington, VA. It's an understandable error because it has a Washington, DC mailing address, and Arlington was once part of DC.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Stryker manages to go from the X-Mansion (Northern New York, Eastern USA) to Alkali Lake (stated in the first two movies to be in Alberta, Western Canada) in a helicopter, without refuelling.
  • Artistic License – History:
    • X-Men Origins: Wolverine: The movie claims to start in 1845 Northwest Territories, Canada... Except that the Northwest Territories would not become a part of Canada until 1870 (and the borders of the vast area were gradually changed until 1905, which resulted in the creation of 4 provinces and 2 territories). Canada itself was only granted Dominion status in 1867.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • RFK Stadium is shown with a baseball diamond, when in real life the Washington Senators baseball team had moved to Texas in 1971, two years before this film is set.
      • Hank tells Logan that most of the students and teachers were drafted for The Vietnam War, which is why Charles had shut down the school. In real life, most—if not all—of them could have stayed through a student deferment, and it's hard to believe that Xavier couldn't push such a thing through if he really wanted to.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • It is nigh-impossible that a CNN reporter would have been allowed to film in a Polish town, especially given that Poland in 1983 was under martial law.
      • When Apocalypse is addressing the world, he speaks in Russian to a large group of churchgoers at a solemn Russian Orthodox Christian service. It is also highly improbable that the church would have that much attendance (religious life in the USSR was very strictly policed).
      • In the middle of the movie, there is a discussion about which Star Wars film is the best, which results in Jean saying the third is usually the worst. While that is Truth in Television today and has been since the Special Edition release of the trilogy in 1997, in the '80s, it was the now universally praised Empire Strikes Back that was viewed as the lowest performing of the series while Return of the Jedi was seen as a return to form.
  • Ascended Extra:
    • Mystique was a one-dimensional henchman in the original trilogy. In the First Class trilogy, she becomes a main character with far more character depth.
    • Quicksilver was a minor character in X-Men: Days of Future Past, and he returns in X-Men: Apocalypse with a larger role in the plot.
    • Deadpool (2016):
      • Colossus; while he's a big fixture in the comics, this is his biggest role in any of the X-Men movies to date.
      • Negasonic Teenage Warhead is a minor X-Men character who died in her first appearance and has only made a few scant appearances posthumously since. Here, she's a supporting character who eventually teams up with Wade.
  • As You Know:
    • The Wolverine: When Logan sees the old pit where he saved Ichirō;, he is about to tell Mariko what had happened there... and she stops him; she already knows that story.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Scott's teacher begins her lecture with, "As everyone knows, the existence of mutants was first discovered during the Paris Peace Accords after the Vietnam War in 1973."
  • The Atoner:
    • X-Men Origins: Wolverine: Chris Bradley after leaving Team X.
    • The Wolverine:
      • Wolverine goes to Japan to face his guilt for killing Jean Grey and to receive help from an old friend who might have the means to remove his Healing Factor and make him mortal.
      • Harada ends up as this near the end of the film.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Ian McKellen invokes this while discussing his character in the "Double Take: Xavier & Magneto" documentary.
      "The Magneto that you see with me is a man of conscience, and a man with an unhappy life behind him. He's come through a great deal, and isn't taking on single-handedly, or even with the help of his Brotherhood, society as a whole. He's joined up again with his old friend, Professor X, and together, they're going to try to move things forward."
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: This is how Michael Fassbender perceives Erik at the beginning of the story, as reported by the May 2016 issue of Cineplex.
    "He works in a steel factory, but he's not using his powers. I thought that was kind of interesting that he's doing honest manual labour. Penance is a bit extreme, but he's sort of left his world domination days behind him."
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     B 
  • Badass Beard:
    • Victor Creed/Sabretooth. How else can he compare to Wolverine?
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • Iceman sports one. Shawn Ashmore has said in interviews that it signifies his character's maturity.
      • Bishop's thick facial hair makes him look formidable.
      • Inverted with the younger Charles Xavier; he has a beard and somewhat longer hair, but they signify how much he has let himself go.
  • Badass Boast:
    • Deadpool (2016):
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • As Xavier lies on the ground and loses blood after being beaten to a pulp by Apocalypse during their Battle in the Center of the Mind, he still reminds Apocalypse that he is alone, and Charles is not. Cue Jean unleashing the Phoenix.
      • Apocalypse delivers one regarding how futile he regards nuclear weaponry.
        Apocalypse: You can fire your arrows from the Tower of Babel, but you can never strike God!
      • Erik and Charles have an exchange at the end mirroring the one they share at the end of X-Men.
        Charles: I feel a great swell of pity for the poor soul who comes to my school looking for trouble.
  • Badass Crew:
    • X-Men: The X-Men consists of Cyclops, Jean Grey and Storm. They all view Professor X as their father figure, who trained, educated and cared for them when they were younger, and this has reinforced the team's familial-like connection over the years.
    • X-Men: The Last Stand: The line-up has changed from the first two movies, so now the team members are Storm, Wolverine, Beast, Iceman, Kitty Pryde and Colossus.
      Bobby Drake: There's only six of us, Logan.
      Logan: Yeah. We're outnumbered. I'm not gonna lie to you. But we lost Scott. We lost the Professor. If we don't fight now, everything they stood for will die with them. I'm not gonna let that happen. Are you?
      (Bobby shakes his head)
      Logan: Then we stand together... X-Men, all of us.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • In the Bad Future, the remaining X-Men are Professor X, Magneto, Wolverine, Storm, Kitty Pryde, Iceman, and Colossus. In The '70s, it's just Charles Xavier, Beast and Logan.
      • According to Viral Marketing, Bishop founded the resistance group Free Mutants in 2018, and by 2023, the only survivors besides himself are Warpath, Blink and Sunspot.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Beast, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Nightcrawler, Mystique, Quicksilver and Moira MacTaggert (as the Token Human teammate) comprise the X-Men. Storm joins them later.
  • Badass Normal:
    • X2: X-Men United:
      • William Stryker is as intimidating as Magneto, without any superpowers!
      • One cop briefly took Wolverine down with a shot to the head.
    • X-Men: The Last Stand:
      • The military is smart enough to go after Magneto with non-metal weapons and took out quite a few members of his mutant army before the X-Men showed up to lend a hand.
      • A random security guard was the one who eventually took down Mystique.
    • X-Men Origins: Wolverine: Stryker was the one responsible for shooting Logan in the head with an adamantium bullet, giving him amnesia.
    • The Wolverine:
      • Shingen Yashida. No mutant powers, no supertech, just a katana. Nonetheless, he holds his own against the Wolverine himself. Oh, and Shingen was weakened by Viper's poison at the time, which was intended to kill him.
      • Harada is a mundane leader of a clan of mundane ninja.
      • Yukio's mutant power is a limited form of precognition that allows her to see how people will die. Her strength and skills come entirely from training, yet she kicks about as much ass as Wolverine, a nearly two-centuries old veteran warrior with an indestructible skeleton, metal claws, and an enhanced healing factor.
      • Logan has a very difficult time with the two determined Yakuza on top of the bullet train, who do all the same death-defying stunts as Wolverine without any superpowers at all.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: The Ancient Egyptians of 3600 BC defeated En Sabah Nur and his Four Horsemen without the benefit of superpowers or modern technology.
  • Bad Dreams:
    • Wolverine is shown to have some nasty nightmares about his experience with Weapon X. They're so terrifying that he wakes up and stabs whatever's in front of him. Or whoever, unfortunately for Rogue and Kitty Pryde.
    • The Wolverine: Logan suffers chronic nightmares of Jean Grey, his Lost Lenore who he previously was forced to kill.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Past Charles is plagued by these, which is why he informs Erik that he takes the serum so that he can sleep at night.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Jean Grey has one when Apocalypse awakens, and it's not the first (Xavier mentions to Hank that her nightmares are different this time).
  • Bad Future: The future is not nice to mutants to say the least.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past has the world ruled by sentinels with Mutants on the verge of extinction in a losing war against the Sentinels.
    • Logan trades the Sentinel post apocalyptic future for a more regular if not a bit decrypt future in the year 2029 with the X-Men disband and nonexistent and Mutants are more or less extinct and Logan and Charles seemingly the last remaining original members are both old ,miserable, and suffering from mental illness (in Charles case) and dying (in Logan's)
  • Bad Guys Do the Dirty Work:
    • X-Men: The Mutant Registration Act is defeated due to the Brotherhood unintentionally killing the Act's main supporter and Mystique replacing him later on.
    • X2: X-Men United: Magneto stops the machine that Stryker's using to kill all the mutants.
    • X-Men: First Class: Magneto halts the missiles that the US and Soviet fleets shoot at the mutants.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: A Brainwashed and Crazy Wolverine slaughters all of Stryker's soldiers holding our heroes prisoner.
  • Beam-O-War:
    • X2: X-Men United: Jean Grey uses the shield variation against Cyclops' Eye Beams while he is mind-controlled. This shows how much stronger Jean is here than in the first film.
    • X-Men: The Last Stand: Iceman and Pyro utilize beams of ice and fire, respectively. When Pyro starts to gain ground, Iceman abandons the beam strategy and coats himself in ice armor, allowing him to just walk over and take down Pyro with an old-fashioned headbutt.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Storm's lightning and Cyclops' optic blast collide during a battle. Nightcrawler teleports Cyclops away before a winner is established.
  • Beard of Sorrow:
    • The Wolverine: Logan starts out with a shaggy one, likely resulting from the events of X-Men: The Last Stand.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: The younger Charles has one when Wolverine first visits him in 1973; Logan finds a man broken by despair. Played with, as he keeps it for the entire movie even after he begins to move beyond his personal pain.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Erik's beard is initially a Beard of Hiding From the Authorities, but it becomes this trope after he loses his wife and daughter.
  • Beat Them at Their Own Game:
    • Magneto is very fond of this one—in X2 he reverses Stryker's machine to target humans rather than mutants, and in First Class he throws the US and Soviet navies' own missiles back at them. Threatening to shoot cops with their own guns in the first X-Men movie may also qualify.
    • A notable subversion—threatening to use the Mutant Cure against any mutants willing to stand against the Brotherhood in The Last Stand.
  • Been There, Shaped History:
    • X-Men: First Class: Mutants both caused and averted the Cuban Missile Crisis. And Beast not only designed the SR-71 Blackbird, but it was originally a transport!
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Magneto was arrested for his involvement in Kennedy's death (as in the magic bullet; the Viral Marketing raises the hypothesis that Mystique in guise of Lee Harvey Oswald was the one who shot), and the Paris Peace Accords that closed America's involvement with The Vietnam War now has Bolivar Trask and some mutants in attendance.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Havok says that Apocalypse took the idea of the Four Horseman from the Bible. Moira counters by suggesting the Bible took the idea from him.
  • Berserk Button:
  • Beware the Nice Ones:
    • X-Men: First Class: Magneto is on the receiving end of Beast's homicidal fury when he tries to compliment the latter's blue furry form (which Hank misinterprets as an insult), and McCoy strangles Erik in response. Only Xavier is able to talk Beast down. Jekyll and Hyde indeed.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: After Magneto nearly murders Mystique, Beast goes into a fit of Unstoppable Rage and almost succeeds in drowning her attacker.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • Nightcrawler doesn't want to fight at the East Berlin cage match, but when he's forced to, he wipes the floor with Angel (who is a Blood Knight and a multiple victor). Kurt then apologizes profusely.
      • Jean Grey is very fearful about the "fire" growing within her and the harm it can cause, but when Charles is on the threshold of death's door because of Apocalypse's mental assault, she releases it in all of its glory to rescue her father figure. The Nigh Invulnerable En Sabah Nur is reduced to ashes by the Phoenix's wrath.
      • Professor X is an All-Loving Hero who is extremely dangerous because of (and not in spite of) his magnanimity. Even when his telepathy is negated by Apocalypse's Psychic Block Defense, Charles can still use The Power of Love as a weapon and he defeats the self-proclaimed god with it. Ironically, Xavier is a conditional pacifist who has a knack for inciting others to engage in violence on his behalf. The foremost example of this is the Phoenix, who is his defender in the Alternate Timeline instead of his doom because he avoids the blunder of his original timeline's self. Instead of being motivated by fear and forcibly caging Jean's "dark power" (which brought out the worst in her), Charles is motivated by love and helps her to cope with it emotionally (which brings out the best in her). The Phoenix is the most powerful entity in the movie-verse to date, and now that Jean has gained mastery over it, by extension, it's also under Professor X's command. In the first film, Magneto belittled Xavier for being weak, but in Apocalypse's denouement, Erik recognizes his friend's strength after his love for Charles redeems him during the Final Battle ("You can convince me to do anything"). En Sabah Nur makes a fatal error in underestimating his captive because the former only measures power through brute force, and Xavier is so much more than his mutation; the latter proves to be the superior and the more lethal leader because of his empathy.
  • Beware the Superman: The series plays with this trope, although it's more along the lines of Beware the Supermen. Generally, this attitude of not trusting superpowered mutants is seen in a negative light, but considering the villains that pop up, some audience members might understand why non-mutants are so afraid.
    • Of course, Magneto was right. Colonel William Stryker (in the second film) was a serious threat to mutant kind and would be only the first of many to come.
    • X-Men: First Class appears to end in a manner which puts the world into such a setting. Up until the Cuban Missile Crisis, mutantkind was an unnoticed breed, but then the whole thing is blown wide open due to Magneto's actions against the fleets of ships at the climax. However, X-Men: Days of Future Past reveals that the US government had kept the mutants' involvement a secret from the public.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Dr. Bolivar Trask's goal in building the Sentinels is to prevent the extinction of Homo sapiens by Homo superior.
  • Big Bad:
    • Magneto and William Stryker alternate between the first four movies.
    • X-Men: First Class: Sebastian Shaw is the lead baddie.
    • The Wolverine: It's only revealed during the climax that Ichirō Yashida is behind the Evil Plan.
    • Deadpool (2016): Ajax is the main villain hunting Deadpool for reneging on their deal and destroying his facility.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Apocalypse is the biggest threat, given the Antagonist Title this film has.
    • Logan: Dr. Zander Rice is the scientist responsible for the mass suppression of the mutant gene. Although Pierce is the most active threat, Rice is calling the shots when trying to capture Laura.
  • Big Brother Instinct:
    • X-Men: First Class:
      • One of Charles' most admirable and flawed traits is his excessive need to protect Raven, who doesn't appreciate his coddling in the slightest. By the finale, it has driven a wedge between the two of them, resulting in Raven's choosing to side with Erik and make her own decisions for the first time in her life.
      • By the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis, Erik had already begun to view Charles as a brother figure. When the Blackbird spiraled out of control, Magneto used his body to shield Xavier from injury, and he immediately halted his attack on the American and Soviet naval forces when Charles was shot.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • When 1973 Charles sees Mystique again for the first time in 11 years, he caresses her hair and shoulder as a gesture of comfort while telling her that he will keep her safe among other soothing words. When Magneto then points a gun in her direction, Xavier stands in between the barrel and his foster sister, and Erik later has to use his power to change the bullet's trajectory so that it won't hit Charles in the head. Despite their estrangement, Xavier is willing to die for Raven to save her life.
      • It's hinted that Peter Maximoff cares a lot about his little sister by the way he holds her while they watch TV.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • Alex Summers brings Scott to Xavier's school in the hope that his former mentor can help his younger brother cope with his potentially dangerous mutant power.
      • When Apocalypse is asphyxiating Mystique, Charles doesn't think twice before he expresses his willingness to surrender himself, but then Moira reminds him that he can't do this because the entire planet would then fall under Apocalypse's control. Xavier collapses in tears when he realizes that he can't exchange his life for his foster sister's.
      • Beast behaves this way towards Cyclops. He designs a means to help the young man see without vaporizing everything. During the final battle, the two are constantly by each other's side, which is especially poignant considering Scott's actual older brother and Hank's former teammate Alex had died earlier.
      • Once Magneto pulls a Heel–Face Turn, he stretches his powers to their limits, doing everything he can in order to protect Charles, whom he loves like a brother, from Apocalypse.
  • Big Fancy House:
    • X-Men: First Class: When the team first arrives at Charles' residence, Erik, Sean, Alex, Moira and Hank have to tilt their head back a little to stare at the impressively large Xavier mansion, which practically looks like a small palace. It's even sarcastically lampshaded by Erik: "Honestly Charles, I don't know how you survived, living in such hardship."
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: The Xavier estate has never looked more beautiful on the silver screen—it's one of the most (if not the most) breathtaking, old-fashioned residences in cinema. It's practically a five-star hotel for mutants! The land around it is vast, lush and green, and one of its highlights is a stone-lined lake.
  • Big "NO!":
    • Wolverine does it three times: The Last Stand: After killing Jean. Origins: When his father dies, and later when his Temporary Love Interest dies.
    • X-Men: First Class:
      • When young Erik wrecks Schmidt's lab in the beginning of the film in anger and grief over the murder of his mother, he lets out an extremely long "Nein."
      • Xavier shouts this when Magneto pushes the coin through Sebastian Shaw's forehead and just before he tackles Magneto to the ground to try to stop him from committing mass murder against the American and Soviet fleets.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Past Charles directs this at Erik, who was at the time has started levitating metal kitchen utensils and cutleries in an attempt to kill the surrounding guards. Charles was even trying to hold him back physically.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Apocalypse exclaims this when he realizes that Charles had been freed before the Grand Theft Me procedure was completed.
  • Birds of a Feather:
    • X-Men: First Class:
      • Mutants in general are thrilled to meet another mutants since each one believes they were the only one. The adolescents are then "adopted" by Charles and Erik.
      • It's especially intense between Hank and Raven because they possess visible mutations, but they drift apart after the latter begins to accept her real appearance.
      • Among the young recruits, Xavier connects more strongly with McCoy than with the others because both men are scientists with a similar temperament who believe it's important to Hide Your Otherness from human society. X-Men: Days of Future Past even goes a step further by showing us that they become Heterosexual Life-Partners.
    • Deadpool (2016): Vanessa and Wade instantly get along due to sharing a dark sense of humor, a sharp wit, a talkative nature, problems against authority, etc. At one point, even Ajax remarks that she and Wade have a lot in common.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • Jean is scared of her telepathic power, and Xavier himself had struggled with his psychic abilities as a child (as mentioned in Days of Future Past), so he relates more strongly to Jean's situation than the difficulties the other young mutants have faced. They have a profound surrogate father-daughter bond because they are the only ones who can fully understand what it's like to be a telepath and the troubles that come with their mutant gift.
        Jean: (upset) You don't know what it's like to be afraid to shut your eyes, to be trapped inside your own head.
        Charles: Oh, I think I do. It wasn't so long ago that I was plagued by voices myself. All their suffering, all their pain, their secrets.
      • Scott and Jean are able to relate to each other when their other classmates look down on them because of the uncontrollable nature of their powers, and gradually, their friendship deepens. Throughout the movie, Jean is emotionally supportive to the newcomer Scott, which mirrors their psychic rapport in the comics.
  • Blade Brake:
    • X-Men: Wolverine averts a fall off the Statue of Liberty by hooking one of the points of the statue's crown, then spinning around it to land on top. The point falls off only after he's done.
    • X-Men Origins: Wolverine has the title hero do this to make a hard turn on a motorcycle. Interestingly, it's one of the rare times his claws don't just go clean through.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Psylocke narrowly survives what would have been a fatal fall by using her energy sword to slide down a building. It still takes her out of the fight, though, allowing Mystique to impersonate her.
  • Blatant Lies:
    • X2: X-Men United: Bobby Drake presents Wolverine to his parents (who think he's been attending a normal prep school) as "Professor Logan." This in itself is borderline, but when the Drakes ask Wolverine what he teaches, he replies tersely, "Art." The trailers for the film played this to maximum effect by intercutting the question and the response with a shot of Logan, claws extended, screaming and leaping towards the camera.
    • X-Men: First Class: Raven claims that her eye colour change at the pub was an accident, but Charles knows that she did it on purpose, and the audience understands that Raven's motivation for the "slip-up" was jealousy towards Amy.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • When Past Xavier (who is drunk and looks like he just got out of bed) is initially unwilling to hear Logan's plea for help, his excuse is:
      Charles: Well, tell whoever it was who sent you that I'm... busy.
      • When confronted by guards in the Pentagon kitchen, Charles attempts to reassure them that he and Logan are important personnel, but one part of his speech is especially unconvincing.
        Charles: We are special operations C-B-F-E-C-I-C.
      • There's a glitch in Logan's Mental Time Travel, resulting in his past self waking up at the worst possible time, in the middle of a botched assassination, surrounded by strange people (some of whom are blue), days after he last remembers anything. Charles briefly tries to explain the situation to him truthfully, before giving up.
        Charles: ...You're on acid. Someone gave you really bad acid.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • The flamboyant East Berlin cage match announcer exclaims, "Sorry, mutants!" after Nightcrawler is electrocuted, but the former's ecstatic giggle afterwards makes it plain that it's just part of his act; he's not the least bit apologetic for any of the abuse inflicted upon the mutants.
      • Professor X telling Jean Grey that her "nightmare" was just a dream is a necessary fib to prevent her from running away, as Bryan Singer points out in his commentary.
        Singer: He lies to her. Because he knows, because he's such a powerful psychic, [...] the power of Phoenix is growing inside her, and it's going to become out of control. And she's terrified of it, but doesn't understand it. And he does understand it. And he can't let on to her that he understands it because it would be too frightening, and she would run away.
      • Xavier claims that he has Level 5 clearance when Moira asks him how he got into her office, which is obviously not true—he gave everyone at the CIA building a "break" with his psychic abilities.
      • Stryker says "I'll be right back" to his subordinates during Logan's rampage. His next scene is when he he escapes by helicopter.
  • Blessed with Suck:
    • X-Men:
      • Rogue's superpower doesn't allow her to touch the ones she loves.
      • Wolverine's claws hurt every time they pierce through his skin.
      • Cyclops must always cover his eyes with a ruby quartz lens, otherwise he might accidentally kill someone.
      • The mutations produced by Magneto's machine are fatal.
    • X2: X-Men United: Jones can change television channels by blinking, but he never sleeps.
    • X-Men: First Class: Havok is very uncomfortable using his mutant ability because of its high potential for destruction, and most likely he has been incarcerated for manslaughter.
    • The Wolverine: Yukio's mutant power allows her to foresee a person's death (including that of her own parents), but she can't do anything to prevent it from happening.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • After slipping into a deep depression, the younger Charles views his telepathy as a curse because he can no longer control it. He is unable to shut out the clamour of thoughts that he doesn't want to hear, and this causes a tremendous amount of agony, to the point where he becomes addicted to a serum which numbs his ability, allowing him to sleep at night.
      • At the age of nine, Xavier believed that he was mentally ill (schizophrenia, most likely) due to the voices in his head, and it took him three whole years to recognize that he was actually telepathic—as dysfunctional as he is in 1973, his childhood experience must have been downright nightmarish in comparison.
      • This is Beast's attitude towards his physical mutation. He goes through great lengths in order to mask what he perceives to be his body's grotesque deformities.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • Professor X invokes this in his opening narration ("A gift can often be a curse"). When a blindfolded Scott tells him that a mutation "doesn't exactly feel like a gift," Charles agrees and responds with, "It never does at first."
      • Jean Grey's ever-expanding superpowers make her life miserable because her classmates don't want to be near someone who's prone to losing control, and she's anxious that she might inadvertently hurt others.
  • Bling of War:
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Blink has the most beautiful combat uniform, according to producer Lauren Schuler Donner in the "Two Worlds, Two Battles" documentary on The Rogue Cut.
      "The costume that stood out to me the most is the one that Fan Bingbing wears. That costume weighs minimum 25 pounds. [..] What Louise [Mingenbach] did was she went off to vintage stores, found beaded collars and put them all together in this amazing design, which she puts on the back of the jacket and on the epaulettes."
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • Magneto's Horseman armour is glorious, and it's certainly more awe-inspiring than his previous costumes.
      • Archangel's silver-and-dark-grey armour is also marvelous to behold.
  • Bloodier and Gorier:
    • Deadpool (2016): Deadpool shoots mooks in the face, impales them with his swords, decapitates them and then drop kicks their heads, and more. Also, no Pretty Little Headshots either; there are even a few scenes where the viscera from having their brains blown out can still be seen sitting on the scenery. Given the nature of Deadpool, this also doubles as Bloody Hilarious.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • The film has some noticeably more violent moments than most of the previous films, such as during Wolverine's rampage through the Alkali Lake base.
      • When Jean incinerates him with the Phoenix Force, Apocalypse's skin is shown melting off, revealing his skull underneath.
      • At one point, Apocalypse decapitates a group of three men with his powers onscreen.
      • During the Battle in the Center of the Mind between Apocalypse and Professor X, it can be surprising that the resulting No-Holds-Barred Beatdown that the former inflicts on the latter after growing in size (throwing Charles against a wall, no less) does not actually kill him. Just before pleading for help from Jean, Xavier is reduced to crawling on the floor, and not only is he covered in his own blood, but he is also lying in it.
      • Logan all but shows how horrific it would look to get torn apart by a mutant with super sharp claws, and throughout the movie Logan and X-23 inflict a lot of gruesome injuries with one guy getting stabbed through the head.
  • Blue Is Heroic: Blue is commonly tied to gentleness, tranquility and intelligence, which are the hallmarks of Professor Charles Xavier—the franchise's Big Good—so naturally it's part of his Color Motif. Fittingly for a man with an androgynous disposition, blue is also linked to masculinity and femininity; his parental authority is rooted in the blend of his Team Dad and Team Mom aspects. In X-Men: First Class, he's introduced as a scholarly kid in blue-and-white pajamas whose instinct is to be charitable towards a starving mutant girl, laying the foundation of his future ascent into an All-Loving Hero and a Guile Hero. As an adult, blue is routinely incorporated into his apparel, and he's the Allegorical Character for serenity. In X-Men: Days of Future Past, his past self is subjected to a Palette Swap that marks the return of his familiar blues and greys to designate that he has taken up the mantle of being a hero again. In X-Men: Apocalypse, he's only garbed in blue after he concludes his transition from a schoolteacher to a leader of mutantkind.
  • Bodyguarding a Badass:
    • The Wolverine: Yukio tells Logan, "Think of me as your bodyguard." Wolverine just eyerolls and goes with it. It's understandable in this case because Logan isn't used to fighting without his Healing Factor. The "everyone can use back up" reason is employed.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: It's the duty of each generation of the Four Horsemen to protect the god-like En Sabah Nur. He is vulnerable when he transfers his consciousness to another body, and his traitors in Ancient Egypt took advantage of this. Without the absolute dedication of his Horsemen, Apocalypse would've died when his pyramid collapsed.
  • Body Horror:
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • Happens to Wolverine during the film's climax, when Magneto impales him with several rebar pipes, entwining them within his flesh and leaving him to drown in the Potomac.
      • Several of the deaths in the Bad Future. First time out, Colossus has his head caved in whilst in his metal form and Iceman's head is snapped from the the rest of his body in his frozen form, only for the events to later be defied. In the climax, Bishop explodes due to being "force fed" too much energy, Colossus is ripped in two, Sunspot loses an arm, and Iceman has most of his torso vaporized.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Angel's empowering by Apocalypse is surprisingly disturbing. He contorts his body while his wings twist and shift as they get embroidered in metal and a second, smaller pair grows, seemingly breaking part of his ribcage and skin. He's understandably screaming in pain throughout the whole transformation.
  • Bonus Material:
  • Bookends:
    • X2: X-Men United: It closes with Jean Grey (in narration) giving the same speech about evolution that Professor X narrates over the opening of the first film.
    • The Wolverine: Yukio telling Wolverine "I'm your bodyguard."
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • The film opens and closes with narrations from both the old and young Charles Xavier, respectively; the former contemplates the future while the latter reflects on the past.
      • Logan waking up in a daze to Roberta Flack's 1969 cover of "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" in both 1973 and the new Alternate Timeline (playing on an oldies station on Internet satellite radio).
      • The mutant boy who is about to be fried by a Future Sentinel just before the main titles unexpectedly reappears in the Alternate Timeline as one of Professor X's students, safe and sound.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Because this is the conclusion of a 6-movie saga, the first shot of X1 can be compared to the final shot of Apocalypse. In the former, we hear Professor X's voice, but he's not seen; in the latter, Xavier is staring straight at the camera, but he does not speak (although his Icy Blue Eyes do convey a message—see that trope's entry). By starting and ending the hexalogy with the same character, it designates that Charles is the most important one (even if he doesn't necessarily have the most screen time).note 
  • Both Sides Have a Point:
    • X-Men had this trope for the Senate hearing where Dr. Jean Grey debated with politicians concerning mutants. Both sides brought up good points, which was the intention of the director. On the one hand, it is an invasion of privacy and discrimination to demand that all mutants register their names, powers, and identities with the government. On the other, mutants are genuinely superhuman, some of them with extremely dangerous abilities... abilities that law enforcement needs to know how to protect people from should a mutant decide to abuse his or her powers.
    • X-Men: The Last Stand:
      • When a cure for mutants is introduced, Magneto is wary that humans will 'draw first blood' and use it to forcibly strip mutants of their powers—which is exactly what they do. Unfortunately, he, the Brotherhood and the Phoenix then go on to launch an attack on the cure-production facility (tearing the Golden Gate Bridge off its foundations in the process) with the stated intent of destroying the cure's source—which happens to be an innocent teenage boy who is himself a mutant, thus giving humans every reason to believe that mutants are exactly as dangerous and destructive as feared.
      • Also, when the heroes are discussing taking the cure.
        Storm: I don't believe this. What sort of coward would take that just to fit in?
        Beast: Is it cowardice to want to be free from persecution? Not everyone can blend in so easily; you don't shed on the furniture.
  • Boyish Short Hair:
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Storm's hairstyle is quite short, and it's easier to maintain when she's struggling to survive the Future Sentinels.
    • Deadpool (2016): Ellie sports a buzz cut as a visual cue to the audience that her character is not a girly girl. Lampshaded by Deadpool, who makes a Sinéad O'Connor joke about it.
  • Brain Critical Mass: Professor Charles Xavier is highly intellectual and he's the greatest psychic on the planet.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy:
    • X2: X-Men United:
      • Done to Nightcrawler with a mind-control serum to make him kill/try to kill the President (it's not clear if he was meant to succeed or die in the attempt). He snaps out of it and escapes when a bodyguard shoots him. This is also done to Cyclops later in the movie and had already been done to Lady Deathstrike.
      • Also Charles Xavier, by William Stryker's mutant son Jason, who is himself Lobotomized and Crazy.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: The prototype Sentinels were constructed entirely from polymer, but Magneto controls them through metal he fused to their components.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Wolverine, when he's discovered by Jean, Scott and Kurt in the Alkali Lake base, has been turned into a mindless weapon. Jean mentions that Logan has lost his humanity and been experimented on. When he emerges, he massacres Stryker's troops in a rage without hesitation, and is only stopped when Jean reminds him of his humanity and removes his helmet.
  • Breakout Character:
    • Deadpool, sort of. He was already popular among comics fans, but the positive reception to Ryan Reynolds's Wade Wilson in Origins eventually led to Deadpool getting his own feature film, even though Origins's In Name Only depiction of Deadpool himself generally rubbed fans the wrong way.
    • Quicksilver was a such a crowd pleaser in X-Men: Days of Future Past that he was given a larger role in X-Men: Apocalypse.
    • In the First Class trilogy, Mystique stands alongside Wolverine, Magneto and Xavier as one of the iconic characters of the film series.
  • Break the Cutie:
    • X-Men: First Class:
      • Charles Xavier. When the movie starts, he's a friendly, happy-go-lucky, idealistic Oxford grad whose only interests are protecting his foster sister, studying genetics, drinking yards of beer and picking up coeds. His initial reaction to meeting other mutants is a puppyish eagerness to find others like him, as well as a gung-ho enthusiasm to work with a superhuman team to fight evil. During the climax, he gets smacked around in a variety of ways, including telepathically experiencing Shaw's gruesome death at Magneto's hands, getting shot in the spine, and having the US government, his best friend, and his sister all turn against him. By the finale, his government is trying to hunt him down, his best friend is preparing for a war against humans, and he's crippled for life in a wheelchair. We know from future installments that he never quite abandons his ideals, but he's frighteningly subdued and obviously much more cautious about who knows his secrets.
      • Hank McCoy starts off as the Adorkable love interest for Raven. He then undergoes a Karmic Transformation after telling Raven that society would never accept them for the way they really looked.
      • Raven Darkholme starts off as an innocent Womanchild who turns into a villain by the end, after being harshly rejected by her love interest Hank, and being repulsed by both humanity's intolerance and by Charles' ideals.
      • Erik Lehnsherr as a child in the early scenes, where he is subjected to the harsh treatment of the concentration camps and is forced to watch his mother die simply because he couldn't move a coin in time.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • For the past decade, Professor X has been very happy running his school with Hank by his side, and he's pleased by human society being more accepting of mutants. He's then kidnapped by Apocalypse (and with Magneto's assistance, no less), his home is blown to smithereens, and he's brought half-way across the world into a situation where's he's completely at the mercy of a mutant who's more powerful than he is. Apocalypse wants to cleanse the Earth of any mutant or human who isn't strong enough to survive the new world order, and he intends to exploit Xavier's telepathy to facilitate this extinction-level event by taking control of him. For Charles, this is a far more terrible hell than what he had endured in the previous two films. McAvoy sums up his character's suffering as:
        "It wasn't just the weight of the world I was feeling. It was the death of the world."
      • Literally in the case of Quicksilver. He's a Manchild living in his mother's basement who simply wanted to meet his estranged father. When he seeks the Professor's help in locating Magneto, Peter is abducted, imprisoned and interrogated by Stryker. He joins the X-Men when they head to Cairo, but the reunion Maximoff had longed for with Erik doesn't come to fruition because he learns that the older mutant has another family and is mourning their deaths. Quicksilver fears that Magneto may not embrace him as a son because Lehnsherr doesn't love his mother, so Peter assists Mystique in attempting to take down Apocalypse. The god-like mutant then breaks Maximoff's leg, which leaves the latter thoroughly vulnerable, and it seems that Quicksilver will meet his death at the tip of Psylocke's katana.
  • Broken Aesop/Metaphor Gotten: The Fantastic Racism-is-bad aesop loses a lot of steam when the group being hunted have Superpower Lottery powers that can include almost god-like powers like Jean's Phoenix powers in X3; especially as they try to use it as a metaphor for race and homosexuality (and the like), but race and sexuality generally don't give you the means to hurt and kill huge hordes of Muggles, including sometimes even without meaning to. However, it seems mutants are hated and feared regardless of whether they're villainous, or even whether their powers are at all useful or harmful, as seen by how Stryker treats one mutant whose "power" is having a lizard-like blue tongue and another who can remotely control TV channels (and maybe program a DVD player or something) by blinking. Generally, the metaphor seems to compare better with gun rights vs. gun control and people with various mental conditions (the socially avoidant and asocial to the autistic and schizophrenic), but these other metaphors don't get much attention and they don't mix very well with any of the others in any case.
  • Broken Angel:
    • X-Men: The Last Stand: A young Warren Worthington III tried to cut his wings off to avoid being rejected by his father.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Angel's wing is seriously crippled after his fight with Nightcrawler, hampering his ability to fly.
  • Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: In X-Men: Apocalypse, Quicksilver utilizes his super speed to punch the eponymous villain a few times. The latter catches on and twists Peter's arm, traps his left foot into the ground and then breaks his right leg. As a result, in the final scene, said leg is in a cast.
  • Bruiser with a Soft Center: Wolverine is near-invincible in a fight and he can be very ill-mannered in social situations, but deep down, he's actually quite sweet and caring. Those who are lucky enough to see his softer side include Rogue, Jean Grey and Charles Xavier. Although there's a part of Logan which will be always "wild," the Phoenix points out to him that Professor X has succeeded in "taming" him.
  • Brutal Honesty:
  • Bullet Time:
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Quicksilver's scenes usually just show his movement as a blur, but his bullet-time sequence, as well as highlighting how he sees the world when he runs, shows him to be not just fast enough to dodge bullets meant for him—he's fast enough to artfully rearrange them in flight so that they do not hit his allies. This is AFTER running a lap of the room and inventively messing with over half a dozen shooters on the opposing side.
    • Deadpool (2016): The entirety of the opening credits is in frozen time, with the camera whirling around a car doing a tumble while Deadpool is fighting some mooks in it, first from an extreme close-up and then slowly zooming away. In addition to the Credits Gag, this allow the viewers to catch plenty of hilarious little details, like a picture of Ryan Reynolds in Green Lantern getup, or Deadpool giving a wedgie to the one bad guy on a motorcycle.
  • The Bus Came Back:
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Toad finally returns for his first appearance since X1. He was in the military, and after Mystique saves him from Trask Industries, he's working in a kitchen somewhere.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • Moira MacTaggert returns after being absent in Days of Future Past.
      • After a 13-year-long absence from the silver screen, we finally see Nightcrawler again!
      • Jubilee returns in a larger role after nearly a decade of sitting X-Men movies out. Angel, who was introduced in X-Men: The Last Stand, also "waited" the same amount of time.
  • Butt-Monkey:
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: Despite his prominence in the overarching franchise (and his role as The Dragon to Trask), William Stryker suffers the most injuries and beatdowns out of anyone in the film. He's blasted by Havok in the opening scene, tasered after Mystique's failed assassination of Trask, and beaten again when Nixon and his team discover Mystique is in the room with them. It's really no wonder he seems to hate mutants so much later on, when he spends all of his screen time in this one getting his ass beaten by them.
    • Deadpool (2016):
      • Colossus' main role in the movie is to get mocked and/or punched in the balls by the other, less self-righteous characters.
      • Since there's absolutely zero chance of Deadpool dying, much of the movie involves him humorously absorbing injuries that would be career-enders or deadly for anyone whose superpowers didn't include a healing factor that makes Wolverine's look sickly.

     C 
  • The Cameo:
  • Canada, Eh?:
    • X-Men: Northern Albertans are depicted as rude, beer-loving, rough-and-tumble rednecks.
    • X-Men Origins: Wolverine: After Logan quits Team X, he returns to Canada and works as a lumberjack, and even wears a flannel shirt in one scene.
    • Deadpool (2016): Wade Wilson hails from Regina, "...the town that rhymes with fun."
  • Cannot Spit It Out: Quicksilver just can't tell Magneto in X-Men: Apocalypse that the latter is his father. Peter knows he'll say it to him some day, but just couldn't do it even when standing right in front of him at a moment where doing so could've convinced Erik to fight against Apocalypse sooner.
  • Canon Discontinuity/Cosmic Retcon: ...by making the events triggered by Wolverine's Mental Time Travel in Days of Future Past erase everything after this early point in the X-Men's career. Most notably, all that remains of the events of X3 are some actor choices (the older Beast and Kitty have their The Last Stand actors still) as proven by future Scott and Jean still being alive. When it comes to what of X1 and X2 remains, and if future Magneto is still reformed, we'll only know if and when there's an X4. To quote the original Days of Future Past, "Cliché though it sounds, only time will tell."
  • Can't Have Sex, Ever: Rogue takes this to can't kiss ever. Even that requires touching her longer than is safe, as proven when Iceman frosted his lips to try it in X3.
  • Captain Obvious:
    • X-Men
      • When Logan sees Cerebro for the first time, his astute observation is, "This is certainly a big, round room."
      • Storm's much maligned observation: "Do you know what happens to a toad when it's hit by lightning? The same thing that happens to everything else." This was supposed to be the payoff to a Running Gag where Toad constantly brags about things a toad can do in response to What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway? questions, and it was supposed to be delivered much more offhandedly; think of the line as it would be said in a show like Firefly. For some reason, it was left in as an Orphaned Punchline.
  • Care-Bear Stare:
    • X-Men: First Class: Xavier uses his telepathy to help Erik recall a happy memory from long ago in order to unlock the full potential of his friend's powers.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: A dying and weakened Professor X enters a state of Dissonant Serenity so that he can focus his residual psychic powers to transmit to Jean Grey his absolute faith in her that she can let loose the Phoenix without killing him. Through The Power of Love, she finally sheds her deep-seated misgivings, and she's able to direct her devastating flames solely at the intended target (namely Charles' would-be murderer Apocalypse).
  • Catch and Return:
    • X-Men: First Class:
      • Magneto catches and then reverses a barrage of missiles.
      • Sebastian Shaw's ability to absorb and release energy is also a form of this.
    • Deadpool (2016): During their climactic fight, Deadpool catches one of Ajax's axes and tosses it back at him.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Storm generates strong winds to launch a car towards the X-Men. Beast is able to slow it down slightly, twirls the car around with its remaining momentum, and then hurls it back towards her with his Super Strength. Storm would've been crushed to death if Psylocke didn't arrive in the nick of time to cut the car in half.
  • Central Theme: The entire movie series is driven by fear and the discrimination that results from that. Humanity fearing mutants and their powers and mutants fearing what humanity may eventually do against them. In that conflict Professor X and Magneto find themselves on opposite ends as far as the response: build a bridge to better the world or strike first and declare mutant superiority in the ensuing war.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: The importance of maintaining hope, even in the face of hardship and tragedy, because hope can conquer anything, and that just because someone has lost their way, it doesn't mean they're lost forever.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: The main threads throughout the story are families coming together, and that love is stronger and more powerful than fear, hate or anger.
  • Cerebus Retcon: Sort of, since the original incident was pretty dark in itself, but Mystique poisoning Charles in the first movie becomes much more sinister in hindsight when the prequel First Class decided to retcon that the two are foster brother and sister.
    • However, it is possible that she and Magneto may have known beforehand that the poison would have been ultimately harmless and have intended to simply keep Charles out of the way of their plan.
  • Chained to a Bed:
    • X-Men: First Class: Emma Frost is chained to the bed's metal railings. No points for guessing who did it and how.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Unlike most male examples of this trope, it's Played for Drama, not for laughs. Apocalypse (with Archangel's assistance) places Charles flat on a slab and restrains him with cuffs as a set-up for the Grand Theft Me procedure, which involves a terrifying Mind Rape where Xavier's mind, body and soul are being violated.
  • Changing of the Guard: The original trilogy and X-Men Origins: Wolverine featured Wolverine as the main protagonist, but X-Men: First Class has Magneto and Professor X as the two lead characters.
  • Character Development:
    • Wolverine has had the most character development throughout the film series.
    • X-Men: First Class explores Erik Lehnsherr's Start of Darkness.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past focuses primarily on Charles Xavier's transition from a Broken Bird to gradually embracing the role of an All-Loving Hero. As Simon Kinberg explains in the January 2014 issue of Total Film:
      "...very early on we made the decision that it was young Charles' arc, and that really the emotional story of the movie is watching him go from the guy who's lost his legs, lost his best friend, lost his sister, and in some ways lost his mind, to a guy who will become the all-powerful, benevolent Professor Xavier. McAvoy is really about as far as one can be from the Patrick Stewart that we know from X1, and we're really watching him take the first big step towards owning that chair and being a leader."
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • Charles' idealism is ripped away from him again, but instead of breaking into pieces like he did in between First Class and Days of Future Past, his experience with Apocalypse hardens him, resulting in a slightly darker (according to Word of God), but wisernote  Professor X than Patrick Stewart's version in the original timeline.
        Simon Kinberg: 'I feel a great swell of pity for the poor soul looking for trouble.' The way that James said that line, to me, it's almost a Magneto delivery. It's a threat. And there's a response from Fassbender where he gives a little smile. And the little smile to me, that I read that smile and Michael and I talked about that smile, the smile was Magneto understanding Charles has learnt my lesson. That's a militant Charles Xavier.
      • Kodi Smit-McPhee elaborates on his character's journey.
        "Nightcrawler, he's kind of scared of his own shadow at this point, so he's probably pretty terrified. Through everything he does in this movie it's kind of, as we say, the stepping-stones of becoming the brave hero he is."
  • Character Tics:
    • X2: X-Men United: Pyro has a compulsive need to open and close his lighter. His habit irritates Mrs. Drake.
    • Deadpool (2016): Angel Dust likes to chew on a matchstick.
  • The Charmer:
    • X-Men: First Class: Charles uses his bubbly exuberance and his psychic powers to pick up women in pubs on campus. Michael Fassbender has admitted that he had portrayed Erik as being captivated by Xavier's charisma.
      Fassbender: The first thing that James [McAvoy] did was he brought a little mischief, a little bit of a rebel to Professor X. Which I think really was very clever because looking at it from where Erik is standing, there was something about that he found very endearing, and he was charmed by this man. I think that's why the fans really react to the bromance thing, there's a real sort of Butch Cassidy element that he brings to it, James, which I thought was really smart.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • When Moira informs Charles that her investigation in Cairo is classified, he wraps up his bold-faced lie about having Level 5 clearance with a twinkle in his eye and a winning smile. Since he doesn't appear to be using his telepathy, Moira completely buys what he's selling with his charm because she then gives him a summary of what she had discovered about En Sabah Nur's cult.
      • During the jet ride to Cairo, Quicksilver (who is a stranger to all of the X-Men present except for Beastnote ) freely admits that he's a "total loser," but instead of sounding pathetic, his allies are amused and charmed by his self-deprecation. While it's not strictly part of canon, this commercial portrays Peter as a romantic suitor when he tries to woo a young woman with his super-speed. Since this ad was approved by the producers, we can infer that it's part of his personality to court a lady with roses and candlelight.
  • Chekhov's Gun:
    • X-Men: First Class: The coin that Dr. Schmidt gives to Erik, which Magneto later forces through Sebastian Shaw's head. Also foreshadowed when Erik impales a drawing of Shaw's head with it earlier in the film.
    • The Wolverine: Ichirō Yashida's life support equipment is used to discover the machine suppressing Logan's healing factor.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • The Power Nullifier that both Charles and Hank have been using to suppress their powers is useful when dealing with robots that can detect mutant powers.
      • Magneto is accused of using his powers to curve the bullet which killed JFK. He later uses this power to try and kill Mystique when a gun is knocked from his hand after firing a single bullet.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • The business card for Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters that Quicksilver received (or stole) in the last movie helps him find the mansion.
      • The fact that electrical fields interfere with teleportation comes into play during the cage fight and on Stryker's helicopter. Near the end, when Apocalypse tries to teleport away, Storm's lightning attacks disrupt him and gets him killed.
  • Chess Motifs: Xavier and Magneto play chess frequently. Since the former is the Big Good and the latter is the Big Bad of the franchise, Charles usually plays the white side while Erik has the black pieces.
    • X-Men: Professor X and Magneto play chess in the latter's prison cell, and Xavier wins the match, which parallels the X-Men's victory over the Brotherhood earlier in the story.
    • X-Men: The Last Stand: Magneto holds back Pyro, The Dragon, and sends in the Mooks, saying "in chess, the pawns go first." note  After the first wave gets mowed down, he adds "that's why the pawns go first." After being depowered, a civilian-dressed Lehnsherr is seen playing chess by himself in a park (he refuses to play with someone else because he is grieving over Xavier's death), and concentrating on the metal chess pieces. One moves, ever so slightly, and then the credits roll.
    • X-Men: First Class: Charles and Erik are seen playing chess a few times. The one move that is actually shown is Erik taking Charles' Queen with his King. The chess game is almost directly followed by scenes showing that Erik is able to understand Raven and consider her natural blue state beautiful while Charles does not. At the end of the movie, Raven, Charles' foster sister and closest ally, leaves Charles' side and joins Erik in his anti-human agenda. Oddly enough, the villains of this movie are the Hellfire Club, which used chess pieces as rank names in the comics, but this isn't addressed in the movie.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: During the plane ride to Paris, Erik tries to convince Charles to play chess for old time's sake; the latter refuses at first (it's an indicator of their practically non-existent friendship), but eventually relents. Xavier tells him, "You have the first move," a rare instance where Lehnsherr is assigned the white side for the game, which apparently symbolizes that he's on the X-Men's team. The first thing Magneto does once they reach the Parisian hotel is betray them.
  • Chick Magnet:
    • Wolverine; Rogue had a crush on him, Jean flirts with him, Mystique attempted to seduce him, Kayla was his girlfriend, plus he had a fling with Mariko and Gwen (the mob boss' daughter).
    • Magneto; he was romantically involved with Ms. Maximoff and Mystique, and in the Alternate Timeline, he was married to Magda.
    • Iceman; Rogue and Kitty have fallen for him.
    • In X-Men: First Class, Charles has the attention of Amy (the blond woman with heterochromia—she has a Funny Background Event showing her continued interest), his sister figure Raven (who has a crush on him) and Moira (there is a deleted scene where she and Charles are making out after drinking too much champagne, and at the end, they kiss).
  • Chivalrous Pervert:
    • X2: X-Men United: Iceman adores Rogue, and although he's supposed to be looking the other way, he can't resist taking a peek at her while she's changing into his mother's old clothes.
    • X-Men: First Class:
      • Charles Xavier boldly hits on co-eds, but when his latest target for conquest sincerely needs help, he's all business.
      • Sean Cassidy is introduced flirting with a girl, who seems to find him comical more than anything else. He also wolf-whistles at Angel.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • In this French interview, James McAvoy discloses Xavier's lust and adoration for Moira.
        "Definitely he has... the hots for her! (laughs) She gives new meaning to his life, undoubtedly. [...] Charles is madly in love with Moira and he will do everything to protect her."
      • Professor X may even have a bit of competition because Quicksilver blows a couple of kisses at Moira and holds her in a traditional dance pose before rescuing her from an explosion. In this commercial, Peter sniffs the hair of the young woman he's (very much) interested in, and he performs elaborate gestures just so that she can better enjoy the romantic movie she's watching.
  • Chrome Dome Psi: Hank recommends to Charles that he shaves his head in X-Men: First Class so that Cerebro will work more efficiently. It's strongly implied in the other films that Xavier is a more potent psychic when he's bald.
  • CIA Evil, FBI Good:
    • X-Men: First Class: The CIA isn't exactly evil, although most of its members certainly acted like Jerkasses.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Invoked by Agent MacTaggert and Xavier when she marvels at the Cerebro supercomputer.
      Moira: The CIA would kill for this.
      Charles: I know they would.
  • Circus Brat: In X2: X-Men United, Nightcrawler spent most of his life with the Munich circus before he was kidnapped by Colonel Stryker. In the Alternate Timeline, he leaves the circus when he's still a teenager.
  • Civvie Spandex: Which was even ported to the early-2000s comics.
  • Code Name: Yeah, um, all of them. (Many of the characters have real names, but we haven't listed them. Greatest lampshade comes in the first movie when Wolverine asks Xavier:
    Sabretooth? (looks at Ororo) Storm? (looks at Xavier) What do they call you, Wheels?
    • First Class has a scene where the younger mutants make up code names for themselves, Charles and Erik.
  • Color-Coded Characters:
    • Although Professor X is comfortable enough with his masculinity to confidently wear "feminine" hues such as periwinkle, pink or lilac, he's mainly associated with various shades of blue, grey and white.
    • While not in her X-Men uniform, Jean Grey often likes to dress in red clothing.
    • Quicksilver's civilian attire is usually accompanied by something silver, whether it's a jacket, pants, sneakers and/or sunglasses.
    • X-Men: First Class: Emma Frost's wardrobe consists exclusively of white outfits.
    • The Wolverine:
      • Yukio has an affinity for fiery red.
      • Viper has a preference for green.
    • Deadpool (2016): Black must be Negasonic Teenage Warhead's favourite because that's the only colour she wears when she's not in her X-Men suit.
  • Comically Missing the Point:
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: When Hank unveils his set-up so that any mention of what happened in Paris on TV is recorded, he proudly notes that it'll record from all three networks and PBS. Logan, coming from a future where there are far more than three networks, makes a sarcastic comment about it. Hank, not understanding what Logan is getting at, gets slightly offended and reiterates he's also got it set-up to record PBS.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • When Hank inquires to Charles about what he's seeing with Moira through Cerebro, Xavier completely misinterprets the question.
        Hank: Moira MacTaggert?
        Charles: (with a goofy grin on his face) Uh huh.
        Hank: Give me the details.
        Charles: She looks amazing. She has barely aged a day.
        Hank: No, I meant, what is she doing there?
      • Peter mentions that he's the son of Magneto, causing a Big "WHAT?!" When Raven asks him how was that possible, he says that Magneto had met his mother and the two of them had sex.
  • Comic-Book Movies Don't Use Codenames: Played with in just about every way possible.
  • Comic-Book Time: Originally averted, as the original trilogy was set within a particular time frame in the Aughts, and characters more or less aged in real time. The obvious exception was Logan thanks to his Healing Factor. However, it started getting played straight with X-Men: Days of Future Past because the past scenes were set about 11 years after the events of X-Men: First Class, yet the cast barely appears to have aged. It becomes even more egregious in X-Men: Apocalypse, as despite being set ten more years later, Xavier, Magneto, Beast, Havok and Moira hardly look to be more than a few years older, rather than than the twenty-one they ought to be showing.
    • Deadpool 2 completely mocks it when several members of the X-Men ( consisting of Cyclops,Beast,Quicksilver,Storm, and Professor X himself) cameo and are all portrayed by their X-Men: Apocalypse actors.
  • Commonality Connection: Bobby and Logan have a little chat about their inability to be close to the woman they have strong feelings for in X2: X-Men United.
  • Composite Character: Some of the characters are amalgams of various mutants from the comics. Which explains weird power combinations such as Callisto.
    • Rogue in the first three movies has the comic Rogue's powers and appearance but the comic Kitty Pride's personality and relationship with Wolverine.
    • Stryker is a combination of the homonymous preacher from the arc "God Loves, Man Kills", and Weapon X's Professor Thornton.
    • Pyro combines the name and powers of his comic book counterpart with Quicksilver's attitude and original position as Magneto's Dragon.
    • Angel Salvadore has her comics powers, but the wings of Pixie.
    • Shaw is a composite of Sebastian Shaw and Mr. Sinister, combining Shaw's powers and personality with Sinister's immortality and obsession with mutant genetics.
  • Continuity Snarl: Has it's own page.
  • Conveniently Coherent Thoughts:
    • X2: X-Men United: Played with when Jean Grey starts to lose control of her psychic abilities. Apparently she can usually tune out the garbage and focus on the particular thoughts she's looking for, but when her powers start to malfunction, she hears every thought of every person in the very crowded museum she's in. This gives her a headache, which causes her to involuntarily short out all the TV screens around her.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: A justified case near the climax. Among the cacophony of thoughts at the White House, 1973 Xavier can distinctly hear Mystique's inner voice speaking, "This is for you, brothers and sisters." When you are Professor Charles Xavier, it's not convenience; it's skill.
  • Cool Helmet: Unlike the previous models of the Cerebro helmet, the inner wiring of The '80s version lights up when activated.
  • Cool Loser: In X-Men: Apocalypse, Quicksilver has a moment of self-deprecation when calls himself a "total loser," and the rest of the X-Men chuckle with him (and not at him). They barely know Peter, but they are already beginning to like him.
  • Cool Shades:
    • Justified with Cyclops—he's always wearing them because they keep his particular mutation in check.
    • In 1973, Logan, Charles and Erik sport fashionable '70s-style sunglasses.
    • In 1983, Xavier, Scott, Alex, Quicksilver and Stryker are seen in '80s-style sunglasses.
  • Cool Teacher:
    • X-Men: First Class: Charles adopts this role when he trains the young mutants; he is always friendly, supportive and caring.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Professor Xavier is well-liked by his students because of his warm and pleasant disposition. He even dresses cool by '80s standards (his clothing is more casual than what he wore in the original trilogy and in X-Men: First Class), which makes it a little easier for the youngsters to relate to him because he puts in some effort in following current trends.
  • Cover-Blowing Superpower:
    • X-Men: By taking a beating in the cage match without a single bruise, Wolverine gives his opponent fair reason to suspect his mutant status. Then the guy goes at him with a broken bottle and Logan busts out the claws, removing any doubt.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Magneto is a fugitive, so he pretends to be a regular human while living in Poland. When Erik Lehnsherr uses his superpower to save a coworker's life, everyone who had witnessed it immediately learns that he's a mutant, and his metallokinesis is a dead giveaway to the steel mill employees that the man they knew as "Henryk Gurzsky" is actually the world's most wanted criminal.
  • Crash-Into Hello: In X-Men: Apocalypse, Scott and Jean first meet when the former bumps into the latter, and Jean would've dropped all of her textbooks and notes if it weren't for her telekinesis. To be fair, Scott's eyes were concealed at the time as he still hadn't learned how to safely use his powers yet.
  • Creator Cameo:
    • Stan Lee in the first and third movies.
    • Chris Claremont in the third.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • Len Wein and Chris Claremont appear as members of the government committee Trask speaks to.
      • Mystique disguises herself as cinematographer Newton Thomas Siegel as she walks away from the commotion at the Paris Peace Accords.
      • Immediately after Past Magneto uses his power to throw several Parisian police officers backwards, Bryan Singer can be seen as a bystander filming him.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • Stan Lee and his wife are one of the many shots of frightened citizens watching the nuclear bombs launch into space.
      • Composer John Ottman is an officer at the facility monitoring missile launches who is briefly seen during Apocalypse's New Era Speech.
  • Crucified Hero Shot:
    • X-Men: First Class: Inverted. This happens twice, once to Emma Frost and again with Sebastian Shaw, and neither of them are heroes.
    • The Wolverine: After Wolverine becomes a Human Pincushion, he strikes this pose, mostly because all the tethers attached to the arrows are forcing him into it.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past: There is a brief moment where the younger Charles, who is bleeding and Looks Like Jesus, is trapped under beams which form the distinctive shape of an X, almost like a cross.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: For a series that is mostly PG-13, people die in this series in ways that are pretty gruesome, especially in the installments directed by Singer.
    • X-Men: Senator Kelly literally dissolves into a puddle of water and then dies after being exposed to Magneto's mutant making machine.
    • X2: X-Men United: Magneto rips the iron out of a corrupt security guard's blood so he can fashion his escapee from prison. Note that he is also smiling as he does this.
    • X-Men: The Last Stand: Xavier being literally disintegrated by the Phoenix. You can even seen the flesh on his knuckles slowly fly off as he's being killed.
    • X-Men: First Class: Magneto shoves a coin very slowly through Sebastian Shaw's head as the latter is completely helpless to do anything about it. Charles, the one holding Shaw immobile, is feeling everything Shaw is.
    • The Wolverine: The victims who get killed Viper (at one point, she lashes her tongue at a random Yakuza member and his skin immediately starts to have boils and dissolving as his eyes turn white). In the unrated cut, Wolverine feeds a ninja into a chipper shredder Fargo-style.
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past might take the cake, thanks to the Future Sentinels and how they gleefully kill off any mutant by simply adapting to whatever their power is and flying it back in their face. Hell, half of that film's Nightmare Fuel page is devoted to it!
    • Parodied, like many things, in Deadpool (2016). At one moment when Wade gets his hands on Smith, he pushes the camera way so that the audience doesn't see what kind of torture he's inflicting on the guy. But we do hear Smith's screams, and they ain't pretty.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse has many examples involving the the titular antagonist and his Four Horsemen. In the prologue, we see his henchmen kill people by ways of melting their skin off, setting them on fire and even mashing them into balls of flesh and bone, to swallowing people into the ground, and that's not even going into the wide spread destruction that he delivers onto Cairo.
  • Crusading Widower: In X-Men: Apocalypse, after Erik loses his wife and daughter, he takes up En Sabah Nur's offer to get the ultimate revenge against a world which has been cruel to him, a world which he feels deserves to be destroyed.
    Magneto: They took everything away from me. Now, we'll take everything from them.
  • Crushing Handshake: Iceman does this to Wolverine in X2: X-Men United by freezing the older mutant's hand when Rogue introduces them. Bobby is aware that Rogue has a crush on Logan, so he wanted to subtly assert his position as her boyfriend.
  • Cult: Moira informs Charles and Alex in X-Men: Apocalypse that cults began to sprang up after the public discovered the existence of mutants, and some of these secret societies believe those with special abilities are part of a Second Coming.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle:
    • X-Men: Days of Future Past:
      • Warpath doesn't stand a chance when facing three Sentinels with only a knife in the opening battle.
      • Wolverine vs. Magneto. Even without adamantium covering his bones, Magneto has a baseball stadium full of metal to weaponize, preventing Wolverine from even landing a single hit before he's disabled.
      • Magneto's fight with a Sentinel only lasts a few seconds.
      • Subverted with Wolverine's fight with the mafia goons. The audience and Wolverine himself believes that it won't even be a problem for him, but then we learn that Wolverine doesn't have his adamantium (which besides making his claws super-sharp, also protect him from a headshot and absorb the impacts of the bullets). Wolverine still wins fairly easily (he's still Immune to Bullets because of his Healing Factor), but it's not entirely one-sided.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse:
      • Apocalypse in general against anyone who goes up against him, except for Jean; the one who comes the closest to get good hits in is Quicksilver, and he's ultimately dispatched. Professor X is at a tremendous disadvantage when he confronts Apocalypse on the astral plane because the latter can sizeshift to an impressive degree. After being crushed like a bug and smashed against a wall like a rag doll, Xavier is left crawling and he's covered in blood. Mystique gets one sneak attack on Apocalypse and then it's over. His hand constricts her throat, asphyxiating her.
      • Jean, meanwhile, shows that Apocalypse was ultimately small peanuts compared to the Phoenix Force.
  • Cute Bookworm: In X-Men: First Class, Hank is shy and geeky, and Raven finds him endearing.
  • The Cutie: This is how Charles is characterized in X-Men: First Class and X-Men: Apocalypse. He's sweet, compassionate, naïve, peace-loving and cheerful. His Pretty Boy features highlight his childlike attributes, and he retains the puppyish enthusiasm that he had as a kid. Even the aloof and grumpy Erik melts under Xavier's charm and affectionately labels him as "adorable." Charles is given more comedic lines in Apocalypse than in previous movies to increase his Adorkable factor. The younger Professor X is often called "bae" (which is an informal term for "baby") on Tumblr because he's so endearing.

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