Magneto (comics)

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For the Amalgam Comics character, see Magneto (Amalgam Comics). For the character from Strange Tales, see Magneto (Atlas Comics).
Magneto
Magneto on the cover of X-Men (vol. 2) #1.
Pencils by Jim Lee and inks by Scott Williams.
Publication information
Publisher Marvel Comics
First appearance The X-Men #1 (September 1963)
Created by Stan Lee
Jack Kirby
In-story information
Alter ego Max Eisenhardt[1]
Species Human Mutant
Team affiliations Brotherhood of Evil Mutants
Genoshan Excalibur
X-Men
New Mutants
The Twelve
Hellfire Club
Acolytes
Savage Land Mutates
Notable aliases Magnus,[2] Erik Lehnsherr,[3] White King[4] (later Grey King[5]) of the Hellfire Club, Michael Xavier,[6] Erik the Red,[7] White Pilgrim, The Creator
Abilities
  • Genius-level intellect
  • Magnetism manipulation
  • Ability to manipulate electromagnetic fields
  • Magnetic force fields
  • Magnetic flight
  • Skilled leader and strategist
  • Helmet grants immunity to telepathic attacks

Magneto is a fictional character that appears in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created in 1963 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, Magneto is the X-Men's first and most famous adversary. The character has made frequent appearances in X-Men books since their beginning, as well as in a number of television, movie, and videogame adaptations.

A powerful mutant with the ability to generate and control magnetic fields, Magneto desired mutants to eventually dominate the human race as he viewed humans as an outdated species that no longer deserves its continual domination over the world. However, writers have since fleshed out his character and origin, revealing him to be a Jewish Holocaust survivor whose actions are driven by the purpose of protecting the mutant race from suffering a similar fate. His role in comics has varied from supervillain to antihero to superhero.

Publication history[edit]

Magneto's first appearance in X-Men #1 (September 1963).
Written by Stan Lee & art by Jack Kirby.

Magneto first appeared in the debut issue of X-Men in 1963, along with the titular team. Through the decades from the 1960s, Magneto has appeared in several issues of the original X-Men series, generally known as Uncanny X-Men, as well as in such spin-offs as X-Men, Astonishing X-Men, Alpha Flight, Cable, Excalibur, The New Mutants, many X-Men miniseries, and several other Marvel titles. His first solo title was a one-shot special, Magneto: The Twisting of a Soul #0 (September 1993), published when the character returned from a brief absence; it reprinted Magneto-based stories from Classic X-Men #12 & 19 (August 1987 & March 1988), by writer Chris Claremont and artist John Bolton.

In a 2008 interview, Stan Lee elaborated that he "did not think of Magneto as a bad guy. He just wanted to strike back at the people who were so bigoted and racist... he was trying to defend the mutants, and because society was not treating them fairly he was going to teach society a lesson. He was a danger of course... but I never thought of him as a villain."[8] In the same interview, he also revealed that he originally planned for Magneto to be the brother of his nemesis Professor X.[8] Writer Chris Claremont confirmed that Malcolm X was an inspiration for Magneto's development, as Martin Luther King Jr was for Professor X.[9][10][11][12]

Magneto's first original title was the four-issue miniseries Magneto (November 1996 - February 1997), by writers Peter Milligan and Jorge Gonzalez, and penciller Kelley Jones. The miniseries took place during a period where it was believed Magneto had been de-aged and was suffering from amnesia, calling himself Joseph; it was later revealed that Joseph was a younger clone of Magneto. Later, Magneto became ruler of the nation Genosha. During this period, he appeared in two miniseries; Magneto Rex (written by Joe Pruett and drawn by Brandon Peterson) and Magneto: Dark Seduction (written by Fabian Nicieza and drawn by Roger Cruz).

A trade paperback novel detailing Magneto's childhood, X-Men: Magneto Testament, was released in September 2008, and written by Greg Pak. Magneto Testament, which Pak based on accounts from Holocaust survivors, watched documentaries, and read comics such as Maus, finally confirms and clarifies into the Marvel Comics canon, Magneto's personal history and background. Before the publication of X-Men: Magneto Testament, Magneto's personal background and history were [13] established in Uncanny X-Men vol. 1, #150 (August 1981) as him being a Jewish Holocaust survivor; while he was searching for his wife Magda, a Sinti Gypsy, Magneto maintained a cover identity as a Sinti Gypsy.[3] This created confusion among some readers, as to his heritage,[14] until Magneto: Testament confirmed that he is, in fact, Jewish.[1][15]

Fictional character biography[edit]

Early life[edit]

(Left) Max and Magda escape from the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp; (Right) Erik and Magda with their daughter Anya. Art from X-Factor Annual #4 (1989) by John Byrne.

Magneto was born Max Eisenhardt sometime in the late 1920s to a middle class German Jewish family whose father, Jakob Eisenhardt, was a highly decorated World War I veteran.[1] Surviving discrimination and hardship during the Nazi rise to power, Kristallnacht, and the passing of the Nuremberg Laws, in 1939 Max and his family fled to Poland where they were captured during the German invasion of Poland and sent to the Warsaw Ghetto.[1][16] Max and his family escaped the Ghetto, only to be betrayed and captured again. His mother, father, and sister were executed and buried in a mass grave, but Max survived, possibly due to the manifestation of his powers. Escaping from the mass grave, he was ultimately captured yet again[17] and sent to Auschwitz, where he eventually became a Sonderkommando.[17][18][19] While at Auschwitz, Eisenhardt reunited with a Romani girl named Magda, with whom he had fallen in love when he was younger, and with whom he escaped the prison camp during the October 7th 1944 revolt. Following the war, he and Magda moved to the Ukrainian city of Vinnytsia, and Max adopted the name "Magnus". Magda and Magnus had a daughter named Anya, and lived uneventfully until one night when an angry mob, spurred on by a first manifestation of Magnus' powers, burned down their home with Anya still inside. Enraged at the mob for preventing him from rescuing Anya, the young Magnus' powers manifested uncontrollably, killing the mob and destroying a part of the city. Magda, terrified at Magnus' power, left him and later gave birth to the mutant twins Pietro and Wanda before walking away to die. Wanted by the authorities for the deaths and destruction in Vinnytsia, while searching for Magda, Magnus paid a Romanian forger, George Odekirk, to create the cover identity of "Erik Lehnsherr, the Sinte gypsy".[3]

"Erik" relocated to Israel, where he met and befriended Charles Xavier while working at a psychiatric hospital near Haifa. There, debates were held by the two regarding the consequences humanity faces with the rise of mutants, though neither revealed to the other that they were mutants. However, they were forced to reveal their inherent abilities to one another while facing Baron Strucker and Hydra. Following the battle, Erik, realizing that his and Xavier's views were incompatible, left with a cache of hidden Nazi gold, which provided him with the finances to pursue his goals.[2]

Rise of Magneto[edit]

Magneto and Xavier would eventually part ways because of the differences in their beliefs on how to help mutants. Art by Carlos Pacheco.

Magneto's experiences surviving Nazi Germany, Auschwitz, and Vinnytsia would shape his outlook on the situation that mutants face in the Marvel Universe. Determined to keep such atrocities from ever being committed against mutantkind, he is willing to use deadly force to protect mutants. He would believe that mutants ("Homo superior") will become the dominant life form on the planet and would set about either creating a homeland on Earth where mutants could live peacefully, or conquering and enslaving humanity in the name of mutantkind.

Magneto's first villainous act is attacking a United States military base called Cape Citadel after bringing down missiles. He is driven off by Charles Xavier's mutant students, the X-Men, in their first mission.[20] He creates Asteroid M, an orbital base of operations in a hollowed out asteroid. He then gathers a group of angry and disillusioned mutants including his own, albeit at the time unbeknown to him, son and daughter Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch and formed the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants to further his goals. Magneto briefly conquers the South American nation of San Marco in the hopes of establishing a mutant homeland there, but is again foiled by the X-Men.[21] He tries to make the Toad infiltrate the X-Men. When that failed, he captures the Angel and tries to force him to tell the secrets of the X-Men. However, the other X-Men rescue their member and destroy Asteroid M.[22]

Magneto is captured by the Stranger, a powerful alien being, whom he initially thought was another powerful mutant. The Stranger encases Magneto and Toad in a special cocoon and spirits them away to another planet, the Stranger's laboratory world. Back on Earth, Magneto's Brotherhood splinters, and Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch desert him.[23] Magneto escapes to Earth by repairing a spaceship on the Stranger's planet, but leaves the Toad behind. He captures nearly all the X-Men and takes over the Mansion, hoping to use the Angel's parents to create a race of mutants, but is recaptured by the Stranger.[24] Magneto remains on the Stranger's world for a time, but escapes again, makes his way back to Earth, and reassembles the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants with the exception of the mutant Mastermind.[25] He then captures the X-Men, but with the help of the Avengers and a rebellious member of the Brotherhood, Toad, Magneto is defeated again.[volume & issue needed]

Magneto then creates the Savage Land Mutates. With the Savage Land Mutates, he clashes with the X-Men and Ka-Zar.[26] Along with Namor, Magneto later attacks New York City.[27] He later fights the Inhumans Royal Family,[28] and battles the Avengers once more.[29]

Magneto later reorganizes the Brotherhood, and fights Professor X and the Defenders. Using ancient and advanced alien technology he found near the core of the earth, Magneto creates the artificial humanoid "Alpha the Ultimate Mutant." Alpha rebels against his creator and reduces him to infancy.[30] Magneto is then placed in the care of Xavier's former love interest, Professor Moira MacTaggert at Muir Island. At Muir Island, MacTaggert discovers that the prolonged and extensive use of Magneto's powers has a disruptive effect on his nervous system and psyche, causing him to become increasingly paranoid and irrational the more he uses them. In an attempt to cure him of this flaw she manipulates the infant Magneto's genetic code, so that when he grows older he will be able to safely use his powers while still remaining rational, in order to prevent him from becoming "evil" in adulthood.[31] However, her genetic tampering soon loses its effect when Magneto reactivates his powers, as the very use of his powers causes his genetic sequence to realign and "reset" to its original state. Magneto is eventually restored to adulthood, but to his physical prime rather than his older, chronological age, by the alien Shi'ar agent Erik the Red.[32]

Magneto later gathers a new Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, and with them battles Captain America.[33] He then opposes Doctor Doom's conquest of Earth.[34]

Reformation[edit]

Magneto goes on trial for his crimes in Uncanny X-Men #200. Art by John Romita Jr.

Magneto's first steps towards a change in character begin during an encounter with the X-Men, when he lashes out in anger and nearly kills Kitty Pryde, stopping short when he sees that the X-Man that he attacked is a child—one of the young mutants that he claimed he was fighting to make a better world for. Realizing that he has come to regard the lives of those who oppose him to be as worthless as the Nazis considered his people to be, Magneto stands down and leaves the scene; though most of the X-Men are dismayed that he escaped, Xavier expresses hope that the encounter might prove a turning point for his former friend.[35]

Magneto later discovers that former Brotherhood members the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver are actually his children, simultaneously learning about their recent marriages to the Vision and Crystal. He reveals to Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch that he is their father.[36] He also discovers his granddaughter, Quicksilver's human child Luna Maximoff.[36] Seeing Luna as a bond to the human race he has rejected, Magneto tries to reach out to his children. Angered by his rejection of them and their mother, they push him away and refuse to forgive him.[36]

Magneto finds himself allied with Professor Xavier and the X-Men when a group of heroes and villains are abducted by the Beyonder, a nearly omnipotent alien being. This entity took them to a planet he created called the Battleworld to participate in a personal experiment of his to observe the concept of the battle between good and evil which would later be known as the Secret Wars. The characters were sorted according to their desires; Magneto was placed with the heroes as his desires were based on a wish to help mutants rather than the more selfish drives of the other villains. This surprises many of the other heroes, who still believe him to be a villain, although eventually they come to accept him as an ally. Captain America even speaks in his defense on some occasions, and the Wasp develops a certain affection for him, although it is tempered by her knowledge of his past.[37]

After the Secret Wars, Magneto is transported back to his base, Asteroid M. The alien Warlock, traveling to Earth, collides into the asteroid, breaking it to pieces.[38] Magneto falls towards Earth and into the Atlantic Ocean, sustaining serious injuries. He is rescued by Lee Forrester, the captain of a fishing trawler.[39] Lee takes him to the same island in the Bermuda Triangle where he'd once held her captive; there she helps him recuperate from his injuries, and the two become lovers.[40]

After recuperating from his injuries, Magneto is asked to aid the X-Men in battling the returned Beyonder.[41] Magneto stays with the X-Men even after the Beyonder is defeated.[volume & issue needed] His association with the team softens his views on humanity, and Magneto surrenders himself to the law to stand trial for his crimes. A special tribunal dismisses all charges against Magneto from prior to his "rebirth," deeming that this had constituted a figurative death of the old Magneto. However, the tribunal is interrupted by an attack from Fenris, the twin children of Baron Wolfgang von Strucker. Professor X, brought to near-death due to the strain of the battle and previously sustained injuries, asks Magneto to take over his school and the X-Men. Magneto agrees and chooses not to return to the courtroom. Instead, he takes over Xavier's school under the assumed identity of Michael Xavier, Charles Xavier's cousin.[42] Seeing him try to reform, the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver begin accepting him as their father.[volume & issue needed]

Though Magneto makes a substantial effort as the headmaster of the New Mutants and an ally to the X-Men, his tenure is disastrous. His responsibilities to the school force him to separate from Lee, who he felt would have been a strong guiding hand and emotional support.[43] The Beyonder plagues him yet again, slaying Xavier's current students, the New Mutants,[44] and bringing them back to life soon after.[45] This deeply traumatizes the entire group.[46] Magneto is then manipulated by Emma Frost into battling sanctioned heroes the Avengers and the Supreme Soviets.[47] Magneto submits to a trial once again, but uses mind-control circuitry he salvaged from the wreckage of Asteroid M to alter the opinions of the head justice in charge of the trial. As a result, Magneto is finally absolved of his past crimes but finds that this only fuels hostility towards mutants.[48] Feeling that desperate measures need to be taken after the genocidal massacre in the Morlock tunnels, Magneto and Storm join the Hellfire Club jointly as the White King.[4] He is unable to prevent his students Roberto da Costa and Warlock from running away from the school,[49] or to prevent the death of the young mutant student Douglas Ramsey after the students sneak away yet again to save a friend,[50] and witnesses the apparent death of all of the senior X-Men on national television.[51]

His relationship with the New Mutants deteriorates even further when they see him and the Hellfire Club negotiating with the demons of the Inferno incident.[52] Magneto later ousts longtime Hellfire Club co-chair Sebastian Shaw in order to establish himself as the head of the Hellfire Club. To win the support of the other Club members against Shaw, he claims that his reformation was all a pretense in order to use the X-Men and New Mutants as pawns in a long-term scheme to take over the world. In response, the New Mutants, who had already decided to leave Magneto's tutelage, declare themselves his enemies.[5]

Seeing conditions for mutants grow progressively more perilous, Magneto begins seeking allies to protect mutants from humanity. He participates in the Acts of Vengeance alongside such established villains as Doctor Doom, the Wizard, the Mandarin, and the Red Skull.[volume & issue needed] His temporary alliance with the Red Skull — an unrepentant Nazi war criminal — is a highly uneasy one. After confirming that the Skull was the original one who had worked with Hitler, Magneto takes revenge upon him by entombing him alive.[53] When Zaladane is able to appropriate the magnetic powers of Polaris,[54] Magneto works alongside Rogue, Ka-Zar, and the American intelligence agent Nick Fury as well as a number of Russian operatives in order to reestablish peace in the Savage Land.[55] This leads to an altercation with Zaladane, who appropriated the magnetic powers of Magneto in addition to those of Polaris. The conflict ends with Magneto reclaiming his powers and executing Zaladane himself. With her death, Magneto renounces his previous efforts to act as a mentor to the New Mutants and to follow Xavier's beliefs in peaceful co-existence between mutants and normal humans.[56]

Avalon and Genosha[edit]

Tired of the constant strife, Magneto rebuilds his orbital base and retires to a life of quiet seclusion. He is, by this point, a figurehead for the cause of mutantkind and is sought out by a group of mutants calling themselves the Acolytes, who pledge their service and allegiance to him.[57] Under the influence of one of them, Fabian Cortez, he declares Asteroid M a homeland for mutantkind, obtaining nuclear missiles from a Soviet submarine he had previously destroyed and placing them around the Asteroid pointed towards Earth.[57]

Magneto discovers how Moira MacTaggert altered his genetic structure when he was de-aged. Enraged, he kidnaps Moira and subjects her to torture, later forcing her to use the same procedure that was used on him to alter the minds of some of the X-Men. However, when the remaining X-Men attack Asteroid M to rescue Moira and stop Magneto's plans, the Soviets launch a particle beam satellite which destroys Asteroid M and the procedure wears off; Moira had learned long ago that her procedure didn't work as a mutant's natural physiology relied on their bodies operating in a precise manner, with use of their powers restoring them to normal, and so Magneto had genuinely reformed. Betrayed and abandoned by Cortez, who had revealed Moira's actions to him to try and provoke Magneto into bringing mutants together to serve as a martyr for Cortez's own cause. Magneto refuses Xavier's pleas to escape with the X-Men back to Earth.[58] Instead, the Acolyte Chrome encases him in a protective shell, saving him from the subsequent explosion. However, Chrome and the other Acolytes die.[volume & issue needed]

The United Nations Security Council, in response to a resurgent Magneto, votes to activate the "Magneto Protocols" — a satellite network, in slightly lower orbit than Avalon, which skews the Earth's magnetic field enough to prevent Magneto from using his powers within, preventing him from returning to the planet's surface. In response, Magneto generates an electromagnetic pulse not only destroying the satellites, but deactivating every electric device on Earth within minutes. The X-Men respond by hacking into Avalon's own computer systems to teleport a small team to the station with the aid of Colossus[59] (who joined Magneto's Acolytes moments after his younger sister Illyana's funeral[60]). Magneto, during the battle with the X-Men, rips the adamantium from Wolverine's bones, which enrages Xavier to the point that he wipes his former friend's mind, leaving him in a coma.[59] This action later leads to the creation of Onslaught, an omnipotent being formed from the combination of Xavier and Magneto's own dark sides, the darkness in Magneto's soul latching on to its counterpart in Xavier when he launched such a devastating assault.[volume & issue needed] Magneto remains comatose on Avalon, worshiped by his Acolytes under the leadership of the ancient mutant Exodus, until Avalon itself is destroyed by the arrival of Holocaust from the Age of Apocalypse Earth. During the destruction, Colossus places Magneto in an escape pod sending him back to Earth.[volume & issue needed] This pod is intercepted by Astra, a former ally who now desires his death.[volume & issue needed]

After cloning Magneto, Astra restores Magneto's memories and powers before attempting to kill him. Instead, Magneto, now fully revived, battles both Astra and his clone. Magneto triumphs over the clone, sending him crashing into a South American barn.[volume & issue needed] However, too weak to continue the battle, the real Magneto goes into hiding, while the now-amnesiac clone becomes known as Joseph (christened as such by the nun who discovered him) and eventually joins the X-Men.[volume & issue needed] Since the world believes Joseph to be the real Magneto, Magneto takes his time to plan. He engages in a pair of brief diversions, first posing as "Erik the Red" and revealing Gambit's past crimes to the X-Men, resulting in Gambit's expulsion from the group.[volume & issue needed] Then he kills George Odekirk, the forger that created his "Erik Lehnsherr" alias, to prevent his true identity from being discovered by Sabra and Gabrielle Haller.[volume & issue needed]

Following this, Magneto constructs a machine to amplify his powers and blackmail the world into creating a mutant nation. The X-Men and Joseph, who had fallen under Astra's control again, oppose him. Magneto's powers are severely depleted from battling Joseph, who sacrifices his life to restore the Earth to normal.[61] However, the United Nations, manipulated by its mutant affairs officer Alda Huxley, cedes to Magneto the island nation of Genosha, which had no recognized government.[volume & issue needed] He rules Genosha for some time with the aid of many who had previously opposed him, including Quicksilver, Polaris, and Fabian Cortez, and engages in a brutal civil war with the island's former human rulers.[volume & issue needed]

Despite the UN's hopes that Genosha's civil war between humans and mutants would destroy or at least occupy him, Magneto crushes all opposition to his rule and rebuilds the nation by forming an army of mutants dedicated to his cause, including mutants coming from all over the world seeking sanctuary.[volume & issue needed] Eventually, Magneto uses the Genegineer's equipment to fully restore his power.[volume & issue needed] Intending to declare war on humanity, he captures Professor X to use as a symbol with which to rally his troops.[volume & issue needed] Jean Grey recruits a new group of X-Men to help Cyclops and Wolverine rescue Xavier; they defeat Magneto when Xavier psychically cuts off his access to his powers. Taking the opportunity for revenge, Wolverine attacks the depowered Magneto, crippling him with serious injuries.[62]

The Destruction of Genosha[edit]

While Magneto recovers from his injuries, Genosha is attacked by an army of Sentinels sent by Xavier's long lost twin sister Cassandra Nova Xavier. Over 16 million mutants and humans die. The attack comes just after Polaris (one of the survivors) discovered the truth about her biological relationship as Magneto's daughter.[volume & issue needed] Magneto's supposedly last moments are spent revealing to Genosha Polaris' status as his daughter.[63]

Charles Xavier is met on Genosha by Magneto, who apparently survived Cassandra Nova's attack and lived unnoticed within the ruins.[volume & issue needed] Xavier and Magneto put aside their differences to rebuild the island nation, rekindling their friendship in the process.[64]

House of M[edit]

Main article: House of M
The House of Magnus, from left to right: Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch, her two children William and Thomas, Magneto, and Polaris.

Magneto's daughter Wanda suffers a mental breakdown over the loss of her children and starts to warp reality in order to recreate them, until Doctor Strange put her into a coma to stop her. In Genosha, Magneto hears Wanda's psychic cry for help and creates a wormhole, whisking her away before the Avengers are able to stop her. Magneto tends to Wanda, increasingly becoming more withdrawn and angry. He allows only Xavier to visit, in the belief that Xavier can help Wanda. After months of failed attempts, the X-Men and the Avengers meet to decide what should be done. When some of the members suggest killing Wanda, Quicksilver informs Magneto of this development, before convincing Wanda to warp reality into the House of M. In the new reality, where the New Avengers, the X-Men, and the members of Wanda's family all received their 'heart's desires', Magneto was attacked by Sentinels over Manhattan in 1979, and revealed an alleged international anti-mutant conspiracy involving Richard Nixon. This resulted in Magneto being granted sovereignty over Genosha as leader of the world's much larger and much faster growing mutant population. Magneto then turned Genosha into the most powerful, technologically advanced country on Earth, which he used as a base to dominate the world and place mutantkind above humanity.[volume & issue needed]

A group of heroes is brought together by Wolverine — who alone remembers the way the world is supposed to be because his 'heart's desire' was to regain all the memories stolen from him by the Weapon X Program — and have their own memories of the "real world" restored by Layla Miller. They band together and attack Magneto in Genosha, believing him to be the one responsible. During the battle Layla is able to restore Magneto's memories, and he confronts his son. Enraged that Quicksilver had done all of this in his name, Magneto kills him. Sensing her brother's death, Wanda resurrects him and retaliates with the phrase "No more mutants," changing the world back to its original form and causing ninety-eight percent of the mutant population to lose their powers, including Magneto. Magneto is left a broken man.[65]

Son of M[edit]

Main article: Son of M

When Quicksilver comes to Genosha to restore the mutants' powers with the Inhumans' Terrigen Mists, Magneto condemns his actions, pointing out the disastrous effects the Mists have on non-Inhumans. Quicksilver attacks Magneto with his new powers from the Mists, and savagely beats him until his own daughter Luna stops him.[66]

The Collective[edit]

Marvel's editor in chief at that time, Joe Quesada, later elaborated on the issue of Xorn and Magneto, stating that "Kuan-Yin Xorn came under the influence of as-yet-to-be-revealed entity that forced him to assume the identity of Magneto."[67] However, the issue of Xorn and Magneto was ultimately resolved during "The Collective" arc in New Avengers. A powerless Magneto is attacked by Xorn, who has somehow evolved into a being of pure energy and merged with both an energy absorbing mutant named Michael Pointer and free floating mutant power energy that manifested after Scarlet Witch depowered the bulk of the mutant population. Xorn reveals that he, of his own free will, impersonated Magneto in order to rally mutantkind against humanity but failed due to the quality of his impersonation. He possesses Magneto and briefly reactivates his powers before being defeated by the New Avengers and a cadre of heroes, including Magneto's former son-in-law Vision and mutant S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Daisy Johnson. Iron Man, Ms. Marvel, and the Sentry combine their powers and send Xorn into the Sun. Michael Pointer and Magneto are freed as a result, though Magneto is arrested and loaded into a S.H.I.E.L.D. helicopter. The helicopter, however, explodes upon take-off through unknown means as Magneto uses what was left of the energy provided to him by Xorn to escape.[68]

Divided We Stand[edit]

Magneto appears, apparently at the behest of Exodus and claiming to be powerless, to help restore the broken psyche of Professor Xavier.[69] Together they revive Xavier before being attacked by Frenzy. Magneto wounds Frenzy by firing a medical laser into one of her eyes. Seeing the injury of a mutant as a crime, Exodus attacks Magneto. Xavier challenges Exodus on the astral plane. After Xavier defeats Exodus, he leaves Magneto and Omega Sentinel to try and rebuild his lost memories.[70]

Manifest Destiny[edit]

Magneto, his powers artificially simulated by a suit designed by the High Evolutionary, reactivates Sentinels to attack the X-Men, who had recently relocated to San Francisco. Though he is defeated, Magneto's attack serves its purpose as a distraction so the High Evolutionary can gain an unknown object from the Dreaming Celestial.[71] After extensively examining the Dreaming Celestial, the High Evolutionary subjects Magneto to a dangerous technological procedure, restoring his powers.[72]

Nation X[edit]

Impressed with the X-Men's recent efforts in defending and helping mutantkind, Magneto offers to work with them on Utopia, the new mutant homeland created by the X-Men using the remnants of Asteroid M.[73] He aids the X-Men in defending Utopia Island from an attack of Predator X monsters.[74] Now considered a member of the X-Men, Magneto assists them in stabilizing the asteroid from sinking into the Pacific. To that end, he works with Namor and the Atlanteans by constructing a pillar supporting Utopia on the surface that would provide a home for the Atlanteans, which Magneto would later refer to as New Atlantis. However, Cyclops reprimands Magneto for acting on his own authority.[75] Despite Xavier being apologetic and appreciative for what he'd done, Magneto leaves Utopia for nearby Mount Tamalpais in Marin County.[76] In a final bid to gain their trust, Magneto enters a deep meditative catatonic state to focus his powers at an interstellar distance and reverse the path of Breakworld's "Earth-destroyer" Metal Bullet in which Kitty Pryde is trapped. Magneto had encountered the bullet earlier while working to regain his powers with the High Evolutionary, and surmised that Kitty was inside. He had chosen to focus on ways to restore the powers of mutants, but memorized the metals of the bullet allowing him to keep a trace on it. Magneto brings the bullet back to Earth, drawing Kitty out of it and levitating her safely to the ground. However, the strain of using his power at such intensity and duration leaves him comatose.[77]

Second Coming[edit]

Magneto comes out of his coma right after Hope is teleported into Utopia by a dying Nightcrawler.[78] With the Nimrods laying siege to Utopia, Magneto stops Hank McCoy from leaving his patients as he prepares to enter battle himself.[79] Magneto holds off a squad of Nimrods, dismembering the robots by pulling shards of iron from the core of Utopia through them.[80]

The Children's Crusade[edit]

Magneto learns that the Young Avengers are going to search for the still missing Scarlet Witch, and that the heroes Wiccan and Speed are the reincarnations of Wanda's children. Magneto meets them, stating that he wants Wiccan and Speed to finally know him as their grandfather, and helps them find Wanda.[81][82] The Avengers attempt to stop Magneto, before Wiccan teleports Magneto and the Young Avengers to Wundagore Mountain. There they encounter Quicksilver, who attempts to kill his father. They discover that this Scarlet Witch is actually a Doombot in disguise.[83]

Magneto Goes Public[edit]

With his reputation around the world as a well-known mutant revolutionary/terrorist, Magneto is talked into finding a solution to the problem by Cyclops before it goes public that he is established in Utopia. With an earthquake inbound for San Francisco, Magneto uses his powers to stabilize the city's buildings, structures and metal vehicles, and to smooth the earth movements themselves, thus preventing any major damage and saving many lives. As a result, some of the city favors him, while others are reminded of how potentially dangerous he can be and has been.[84]

Avengers vs. X-Men and aftermath[edit]

Main article: Avengers vs. X-Men

Magneto fights Iron Man when the X-Men will not give Hope Summers to the Avengers. During the fight, Magneto senses the destructive force of the coming Phoenix. Iron Man stops the fight in favor of helping in the search for Hope. As he is leaving, Magneto tells him to find his daughter Scarlet Witch.[85] After the battles around the world, Magneto and Psylocke meet Storm and an unconscious Doctor Nemesis at one of their hideouts. Magneto, Storm and Psylocke prepare to go to the Moon to help Cyclops.[86] Magneto later informs Cyclops of Namor's assault on Wakanda.[87] Magneto asks Professor X for his help as the Phoenix Force-powered Emma Frost's rule becomes more tyrannical.[88] Magneto later joins the Avengers, the X-Men, and Hulk in confronting the Phoenix Force-powered Cyclops. Scarlet Witch uses her abilities to keep Magneto from being harmed.[89] Following the defeat of Cyclops, Magneto and the other former members are reported to have gone on the run.[90]

After finding out that his control of his powers have been lost due to contact with the Phoenix Force, Magneto nonetheless teams up with Cyclops, Emma Frost, and Magik to start a new school for mutants, as new mutants have started appearing again, in the old Weapon X facility.[91] Magneto also pretended to serve as a disgruntled informer for SHIELD but it turned out to be an attempt by him to infiltrate the organization.[92]

Ongoing Magneto series[edit]

Magneto will be starring in his first ongoing series in 2014 written by Cullen Bunn.[citation needed] Feeling disenfranchised by the state of mutant affairs, Magneto decides to venture off on his own to fight for mutantkind's survival on his own terms.

Powers and abilities[edit]

Magneto is a mutant with the power to manipulate electromagnetic fields to achieve a wide range of effects.

The primary application of his power is control over magnetism and the manipulation of ferrous and nonferrous metal. While the maximum amount of mass he can manipulate at one time is unknown, he has moved large asteroids several times and effortlessly levitated a 30,000 ton nuclear submarine. His powers extend into the atomic level (insofar as the electromagnetic force is responsible for chemical bonding), allowing him to manipulate chemical structures and rearrange matter, although this is often a strenuous task. He can manipulate a large number of individual objects simultaneously and has assembled complex machinery with his powers. He can also affect non-metallic and non-magnetic objects to a lesser extent and frequently levitates himself and others. He can also generate electromagnetic pulses of great strength and generate and manipulate electromagnetic energy down to photons. He can turn invisible by warping visible light around his body.[93] Another way in which Magneto frequently uses his power is the projection of force-fields which selectively block out matter and energy. These fields are strong enough to withstand the detonation of multiple thermonuclear weapons, hence Magneto is invulnerable to most harm when surrounded by his shield and can survive in deep space thanks to it. He can also channel his powers through his own body to increase his strength and durability far beyond human limits and has a baseline reaction time 15 times as short as that of regular humans. On occasion he has altered the behavior of gravitational fields around him, which has been suggested as evidence of the existence of a unified field which he can manipulate. He has demonstrated the capacity to produce a wormhole and to safely teleport himself and others via the wormhole.[94]

Magneto has been frequently depicted as able to resist all but the strongest or most unexpected of telepathic attacks. A number of explanations have been proposed for his unusually strong resistance to telepathy, among them: (a) technology wired into his helmet (the explanation given in the X-Men film series and several comic plotlines), (b) some physical aspect of his electromagnetic powers that can interfere with telepathy (he once used the Earth's magnetic field to dampen the powers of all telepaths within his reach), (c) latent telepathic powers of his own or (d) sheer force of will (cf. X-Men Vol. 2 #2). The theme of latent telepathic powers has been explored in a number of stories, among them the Secret Wars limited series. In some of his earliest appearances, Magneto was depicted as capable of engaging in astral projection. He has also, on rare occasions, been shown reading other's dreams, issuing telepathic commands, and probing the minds of others.[95] He has demonstrated the ability to shield his mind, while in intense meditation, so completely that even Emma Frost was not able to read his thoughts, despite being directly in front of him and actively attempting to do so.[76]

In addition to his powers, Magneto has many other skills. He is a genius with competence in various fields of advanced science, especially in genetic manipulation, particle physics, engineering, and other fields of technology. He has engineered advanced weaponry, space stations, superpowered humanoid lifeforms, devices that generate volcanoes and earthquakes, devices that block telepathy, and devices that can nullify all mutant powers except for his own. He has reconstructed computerized devices from memory. He is fluent in many human languages and once single-handedly deciphered the unknown language of a lost civilization.[96] He possesses extraordinary skill in "reading" the microexpressions on others' faces and sensing what they are thinking and feeling, whether they are lying, fearful, etc. a skill which he refers to as "taking your enemy's measure."[97] He also is a master strategist and tactician with extensive combat experience, and has often been successful in single-handed combat against entire groups of superhuman adversaries. He also has some military training in hand-to-hand combat and has been shown to be effective with his fists, but he prefers to use his powers when in combat situations.

Reception[edit]

Magneto was ranked number 1 by IGN's Top 100 Comic Book Villains list,[98] was listed number 17 in Wizard's Top 100 Greatest Villains Ever list,[99] and was ranked as the 9th Greatest Comic Book Character Ever in Wizard's list of the 200 Greatest Comic Book Characters of All Time, the second highest villain on that list.[100]

Collected editions[edit]

Title Material collected Publication date ISBN
Magneto: Rogue Nation X-Men: The Magneto War #1; Uncanny X-Men #366-367; X-Men Vol. 2 #85-87; Magneto Rex #1-3 April 2002 978-0785108344
X-Men: Magneto Testament X-Men: Magneto Testament #1-5 October 2009 978-0785126409
X-Men: First Class: Class Portraits Magneto Vol. 2 #1, Cyclops Vol. 2 #1, Iceman and Angel #1, & Marvel Girl #1 May 2011 978-0785155591
Magneto: Not a Hero Magneto: Not a Hero #1-4 May 2012 978-0785158608
Magneto Vol. 1: Infamous Magneto Vol. 3 #1-6 September 2014 978-0785189879

Other versions[edit]

In other media[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d X-Men: Magneto Testament #1
  2. ^ a b Uncanny X-Men #161, September 1981
  3. ^ a b c X-Men vol. 2 #72
  4. ^ a b New Mutants #51 (May 1987)
  5. ^ a b New Mutants #75 (May 1989)
  6. ^ New Mutants #35-75
  7. ^ Uncanny X-Men #350
  8. ^ a b Marvel Spotlight: Uncanny X-Men 500 Issues Celebration, p. 5-7
  9. ^ Young, Paul. "Real Life Inspirations Behind Some of the Best Comic Book Villains". 
  10. ^ Hanks, Henry. "The secret to 'X-Men's' success". 
  11. ^ Darowski, Joseph J. The Ages of the X-Men:Essays on the Children of the Atom in Changing Times. p. 71. 
  12. ^ DeCandido, Keith R.A., Haber, Karen, Wein, Len (April 1, 2006). The Unauthorized X-Men: SF and Comic Writers on Mutants, Prejudice, and Adamantium. Benbella Books. p. 23. ISBN 1-932100-74-1. 
  13. ^ Mordechai Shinefield (2008-06-07). "X-Men mutant survives the Holocaust in new Marvel Comics miniseries". Haaretz. Retrieved 2008-06-09. 
  14. ^ The Religious Affiliation of Comic Book Character Erik Magnus Lehnsherr — Magneto. URL last checked 2010-09-28.
  15. ^ Meth, Clifford. Protocols of the Elders of Marvel. URL last checked 2010-09-28.
  16. ^ Classic X-Men #12
  17. ^ a b New Mutants #49
  18. ^ Uncanny X-Men #274
  19. ^ Excalibur vol.3 #14
  20. ^ X-Men #1
  21. ^ X-Men #4
  22. ^ X-Men #5
  23. ^ X-Men #11
  24. ^ X-Men #17-18
  25. ^ Avengers #47-49
  26. ^ X-Men #62-63
  27. ^ Fantastic Four #102-104
  28. ^ Amazing Adventures #9-10
  29. ^ Avengers #110-111
  30. ^ Defenders #15-16
  31. ^ X-Men Vol. 2 #2
  32. ^ X-Men #104
  33. ^ Captain America Annual #4
  34. ^ Super-Villain Team-Up #14; Champions #16
  35. ^ Uncanny X-Men Vol. 1, #150 (August 1981)
  36. ^ a b c Vision and the Scarlet Witch Vol. 1, #4 (February 1983).
  37. ^ Secret Wars vol. 1 #3 (July 1984)
  38. ^ New Mutants #21 (November 1984)
  39. ^ Uncanny X-Men #188 (December 1984)
  40. ^ New Mutants #23, 24, 26, 28, 29 (January, February, April, June, July 1985)
  41. ^ New Mutants #29 (July 1985)
  42. ^ Uncanny X-Men #200 (December 1985).
  43. ^ New Mutants #35 (January 1986).
  44. ^ New Mutants #37 (March 1986).
  45. ^ Secret Wars II #9 (March 1986).
  46. ^ New Mutants #38 (April 1986)
  47. ^ The X-Men vs. The Avengers #1–4 (April–July 1987)
  48. ^ The X-Men vs. The Avengers #4 (July 1987)
  49. ^ Fallen Angels #1 (April 1987)
  50. ^ New Mutants #60 (February 1988)
  51. ^ New Mutants #61 (March 1988)
  52. ^ New Mutants #73 (March 1989)
  53. ^ Captain America #367 (February 1990).
  54. ^ Uncanny X-Men #250
  55. ^ Uncanny X-Men #274 (March 1991)
  56. ^ Uncanny X-Men #275 (April 1991).
  57. ^ a b X-Men vol. 2 #1 (October 1991)
  58. ^ X-Men #1-3 (October–December 1991)
  59. ^ a b X-Men #25
  60. ^ Uncanny X-Men #304
  61. ^ X-Men, Volume 2, #87, April 1999
  62. ^ X-Men #113 (Jun 01, 2001)
  63. ^ New X-Men #132
  64. ^ Excalibur (comics)#Excalibur vol. 3 (2004) #20
  65. ^ House of M #8
  66. ^ Son of M #5, 2006
  67. ^ Quesada, Joe. "New Joe Fridays Week 03" URL last checked 2010-09-28.
  68. ^ New Avengers #20
  69. ^ X-Men: Legacy #208
  70. ^ X-Men: Legacy #209-#210, 2008
  71. ^ Uncanny X-Men #500
  72. ^ Uncanny X-Men #507
  73. ^ "Uncanny X-Men (1963) #516 | Comic Books | Comics". Marvel.com. Retrieved 2012-08-18. 
  74. ^ Uncanny X-Men #515-516
  75. ^ Uncanny X-Men #520
  76. ^ a b Uncanny X-Men #521
  77. ^ Uncanny X-Men #522
  78. ^ Uncanny X-Men #524
  79. ^ New Mutants #11
  80. ^ X-Men Legacy #237
  81. ^ Uncanny X-Men #526
  82. ^ Avengers: The Children's Crusade #1
  83. ^ Avengers: The Children's Crusade #2
  84. ^ Uncanny X-Men #534.1 (2011)
  85. ^ AvX: Versus #1
  86. ^ Uncanny X-Men Vol. 2 #13
  87. ^ Avengers vs. X-Men #8
  88. ^ Avengers vs. X-Men #10
  89. ^ Avengers vs. X-Men #11
  90. ^ Avengers vs. X-Men #12
  91. ^ All-New X-Men #1-5
  92. ^ Uncanny X-Men Vol. 1 #1-3
  93. ^ Vision and the Scarlet Witch #4 (February 1983)
  94. ^ Excalibur v.3, #8 (February 2005)
  95. ^ The X-Men, v.1, #5-7 (May–September 1964), New Mutants Vol. 1 #38 (1986), X-Men vs. Avengers miniseries (1987), Marvel Fanfare #33 (1987)
  96. ^ Defenders #15 (September 1974)
  97. ^ Avengers Academy #6 (January 2011)
  98. ^ IGN.com, Top 100 Comic Book Villains, "Magneto is Number 1"
  99. ^ Wizard, #177, July 2006
  100. ^ Wizarduniverse.com, "The 200 Greatest Comic Characters of All Time", Numbers 20 Through 1, 2008-05-23[dead link]

External links[edit]