Cyclops (Marvel Comics)
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Art by John Cassaday
|First appearance||The X-Men #1 (Sep. 1963)|
|Created by||Stan Lee (writer)
Jack Kirby (artist)
|Alter ego||Scott Summers|
(Time-Displaced Cyclops): Champions
|Notable aliases||Slim, Slym Dayspring, Eric the Red, Mutate #007, Phoenix, Dark Phoenix|
Cyclops (Scott Summers) is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics and is a founding member of the X-Men. Created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby, the character first appeared in the comic book The X-Men #1 (September 1963).
Cyclops is a member of a subspecies of humans known as mutants, who are born with superhuman abilities. Cyclops can emit powerful beams of energy from his eyes. He cannot control the beams without the aid of special eyewear which he must wear at all times. He is typically considered the first of the X-Men, a team of mutant heroes who fight for peace and equality between mutants and humans, and one of the team's primary leaders.
Cyclops is most often portrayed as the archetypal hero of traditional American popular culture—the opposite of the tough, anti-authority antiheroes that emerged in American popular culture after the Vietnam War (e.g., Wolverine, his X-Men teammate).
One of Marvel's most prominent characters, Cyclops was rated #1 on IGN.com's list of Top 25 X-Men from the past forty years in 2006, and the 39th in their 2011 list of Top 100 Comic Book Heroes. In 2008, Wizard Magazine also ranked Cyclops the 106th in their list of the 200 Greatest Comic Book Characters of All Time. In a 2011 poll, readers of Comic Book Resources voted Cyclops as 9th in the ranking of 2011 Top Marvel Characters.
James Marsden has portrayed Cyclops in the first three and the seventh X-Men films, while in the 2009 prequel film, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, he is portrayed as a teenager by actor Tim Pocock. In 2016's X-Men: Apocalypse, a younger version of him is portrayed by Tye Sheridan. Sheridan will reprise his role in X-Men: Dark Phoenix.
- 1 Publication history
- 2 Fictional character biography
- 2.1 Main Timeline Cyclops
- 2.1.1 Youth
- 2.1.2 Ancestry
- 2.1.3 The X-Men
- 2.1.4 X-Factor and Inferno
- 2.1.5 Return to the X-Men
- 2.1.6 New X-Men
- 2.1.7 Headmaster
- 2.1.8 Astonishing X-Men
- 2.1.9 Deadly Genesis
- 2.1.10 Civil War
- 2.1.11 World War Hulk
- 2.1.12 Messiah Complex
- 2.1.13 Manifest Destiny
- 2.1.14 Mutant/Anti-mutant rioting and the return of Madelyne Pryor
- 2.1.15 Utopia/Dark Reign
- 2.1.16 Second Coming and Age Of Heroes
- 2.1.17 Fear Itself
- 2.1.18 Schism
- 2.1.19 X-Men: Regenesis
- 2.1.20 Avengers Vs. X-Men
- 2.1.21 Post-Avengers vs. X-Men
- 2.1.22 New Xavier School
- 2.1.23 Secret Wars
- 2.1.24 All-New, All-Different
- 2.2 Time-displaced Cyclops
- 2.1 Main Timeline Cyclops
- 3 Powers and abilities
- 4 Relationships
- 5 Other versions
- 6 In other media
- 7 Collected editions
- 8 References
- 9 External links
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Cyclops first appeared in The X-Men #1 (September 1963). He was created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, and has been a mainstay character of the X-Men series. Lee said that Cyclops and Beast were his two favorite X-Men, elaborating that "I love tortured heroes—and he was tortured because he couldn't control his power." Originally dubbed "Slim Summers", by The X-Men #3 his name was changed to "Scott", with "Slim" becoming a nickname.
Scott Summers is the first of the X-Men recruited by Professor X; Xavier hand-picks Scott to lead his X-Men, and to carry on the legacy of his mutant-human-harmony ideals. Xavier views Scott as one of his most prized pupils; their relationship exhibits father/son qualities. From time to time, Scott's extreme loyalty to Xavier has cost him dearly in his relationships with others; but, over the course of the characters' publication history, he eventually emerges from Xavier's shadow as the X-Men's undisputed leader.
Dave Cockrum created the Starjammers, including Corsair, and convinced X-Men writer Chris Claremont to use the characters for this series. In order to provide a plausible excuse for the Starjammers to make repeat appearances in X-Men, they decided to make Corsair the father of Cyclops.
Summers remained a member of the team up through Uncanny X-Men #138. After departing the main cast, he was a recurring character in the series until Uncanny X-Men #201, after which he was featured in the launch of a new series by Marvel. This new series, X-Factor, launched in 1986 and starred the original X-Men team of Cyclops, Marvel Girl, Beast, Iceman, and Angel. Scott stayed with the X-Factor title through X-Factor #70. In October 1991, Summers returns to the X-Men to launch X-Men #1 (2nd series). This series was the second of two X-Men titles and featured Cyclops, Wolverine, Gambit, Psylocke, Rogue, and Beast as Blue team. Cyclops has recently been featured in another title launch with the second introduction of a new X-Men series Astonishing X-Men. Astonishing X-Men features Cyclops, Wolverine, Shadowcat, Colossus, Emma Frost, and Beast as a team. Throughout this time, Cyclops continued to make appearances in Uncanny X-Men  Marvel has also used Cyclops to launch variant series of X-Men titles most notably Ultimate X-Men and New X-Men.
Cyclops has appeared in limited series including Adventures of Cyclops & Phoenix, Further Adventures of Cyclops & Phoenix, X-Men: The Asgardian Wars, the second series of Astonishing X-Men, X-Men: The Search for Cyclops, his own self-titled series Cyclops, and X-Men Origins: Cyclops #1.
In 1991, writer Brian K. Vaughan worked on the self-titled series Cyclops #1–4. In 2000, Joseph Harris wrote the four-issue run titled X-Men: The Search for Cyclops that dealt with Cyclops's return after merging with Apocalypse in the events of the Twelve from Uncanny X-Men #377.
During Joss Whedon's run of Astonishing X-Men, Cyclops adopts a new attitude unfamiliar to most accustomed fans. After Emma Frost's psychic intervention at the mansion, he temporarily loses his powers after owning up to his self-inflicted, traumatic past. This prompted an interview with Whedon in Wizard magazine #182. When asked if Cyclops didn't have his powers any more, Whedon replied:
No, he doesn't have his powers. Well, he had a choice to either be completely out of control or bury them. He can't use them. That's pretty much it. But the thing that would be fun is that, with no powers, he's going to be the best that he's ever been. That's what the arc is about. [Cyclops has] been the team leader and the team washout in terms of popularity. He was defined by Jean [Grey] so much, and I just think that this guy is so interesting in his struggle against mediocrity. Then, when it's all laid on the line, when you find out the thing that's been holding him back from being just a complete bad ass has been himself all his life, that he's been lying to everyone, including himself, about who he is-that should be freeing. The Scott we're going to see is going to be a little bit different. This guy is either completely out of control or in control of something we're not used to. I wanted him to be an unabashed tough guy. He is shooting people and turning very much into a leader. Not everyone is going to like it."— Joss Whedon
Now, the X-Men leader has become more confident, outspoken, and audacious. This has had a significant effect on his leadership and his respect among teammates, most notably Wolverine.
However, since the birth of Hope Summers, Cyclops has become increasingly unstable with his own self. Overprotective of those close to him, amoral in his new, Magneto-like view of humanity, and mentally ambiguous, Cyclops is viewed as an antihero and occasionally even a villain in the minds of his fellow superheroes. Kieron Gillen's run in Uncanny X-Men ended with an unrepentant Cyclops, who had become increasingly hardline during Gillen's run, in prison for his actions during Avengers vs. X-Men. Gillen wrote him openly suicidal in a five-part epilogue: AvX: Consequences.
As part of Marvel NOW!, there are two Cyclopes: the original Cyclops is featured in volume 3 of Uncanny X-Men, which was launched in February 2013, and a younger time-displaced version as part of the All-New X-Men team, both series are written by Brian Michael Bendis and drawn by Chris Bachalo. Uncanny X-Men features the remnants of Cyclops' Extinction Team, who have taken up a revolutionary, and sometimes violent course to promote mutant rights, and started up a new school for new mutants, the New Charles Xavier School for the Gifted. The younger Cyclops tries to make sense with his future and find a place for himself, while deciding if he even wants to stay an X-Man.
Fictional character biography
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Cyclops's history has undergone various revisions, both minor and major. The central fixed element is the character's origin story. As a young boy, Scott Summers is orphaned after watching his parents die in a plane crash. Scott and his brother, Alex, are the only survivors. Their parents placed the two boys in the only available parachute and forced them to jump from the plane just prior to crashing. The boys become wards of the state and are separated. When Scott's powers manifest uncontrollably he runs away from the orphanage and wanders before being taken in as ward by Charles Xavier.
Main Timeline Cyclops
When Scott was a boy growing up in Anchorage, Alaska, his father, USAF Major Christopher Summers, took the family for a flight in their de Havilland Mosquito. It came under attack by an alien Shi'ar spaceship. As the plane went down in flames, Scott's parents fastened him and his younger brother Alex into a parachute and pushed them off the plane, hoping that they would survive.
In Cyclops's first appearance in X-Men #1, he is already leading the X-Men under tutelage of Professor X. Later, Scott's origin is first presented in Uncanny X-Men #38–42 and later refined in Uncanny X-Men #144 and Uncanny X-Men #156. In 2010, Marvel released X-Men Origins: Cyclops #1 that describes the character's childhood through his joining the X-Men.
The early accounts in the X-Men comics use flashbacks to tell the origin story of Scott parachuting from his parents' plane. The flashbacks are often told from various narrative perspectives and place different emphasis on the events of this period. Scott's poor control over his power have been attributed to events in his childhood. In Uncanny X-Men #156, Scott's parachute caught fire and Scott struck his head upon landing. This caused brain damage to Scott which is responsible for his poor control over his optic blasts. Several origin stories do not feature the head injury account with X-Men Origins: Cyclops #1 being the most recent. The head injury account has also been retconned in Astonishing X-Men Vol. 2 as being due to a self-imposed mental block he made as a child to deal with the traumatic events of his life. With the help of Emma Frost, Scott is able to briefly bypass his own mental block and control his powers, though he reveals that his control is waning and temporary.
For a time Scott had prolonged amnesia about his childhood. Parts of his memory returned when he was unexpectedly attacked by the demon D'Spayre while on a leave of absence after Jean Grey's perceived first death. Scott spent most of his childhood at the State Home for the Foundlings in Omaha, Nebraska and was subjected to batteries of tests and experiments by the orphanage's owner, Mr. Milbury, an alias for the geneticist Mister Sinister, who also placed mental blocks on Scott.
In The Further Adventures of Cyclops and Phoenix limited series, both Scott and Jean were sent back in time to 19th century England by Madame Sanctity, a surviving member of the Askani sisterhood. In 1860, prior to the epilogue of the story, a young English orphan named Daniel (who was freed, one year ago, from the clutches of Nathaniel Essex by Scott and Jean) is shown arriving in New York Harbor from London. As a form of reverence toward the couple who recently showed him great kindness, when urged by his apparent guardian to adopt a new surname at the immigration station, Daniel chooses Summers. Although Scott does not make the familial connection between Daniel and himself, he suspects that his presence in this time (along with Jean's) did something else to affect the course of history, aside from stopping Mister Sinister and Apocalypse.
When Scott is sixteen, he runs away from the orphanage, and while wandering the streets is taken in by Charles Xavier. On a trip to New York with his orphanage supervisor Scott walks across a construction site and his optic beam activates. The blast damages a metal crane causing it to fall towards an onlooking crowd. Scott thinks quickly unleashing a second blast that destroys the crane. The crowd thinks this is an act of violence, and forms a lynch mob. Scott hops onto a train and runs away. Wandering Scott encounters Jack O' Diamonds and battles the villain. Scott is found by Charles Xavier, who erases the crowd's memories. Xavier then asks Scott to join the X-Men, and he gladly accepts, as the first official member.
In the X-Men's first field mission, he battles Magneto. With the X-Men, he battles the Blob. He also becomes romantically attracted to Jean Grey. With the X-Men, he then clashes with the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants for the first time. Xavier would soon choose him to be deputy leader of the team and act as field leader whenever he was absent.
Cyclops has a relationship with Jean Grey during their time in the "original" X-Men. For a long time, he refuses to admit, even to himself, that he has feelings for her, afraid he would be hurt again or that his optic blasts would hurt her – or anyone else he cared about for that matter – and also because he feels he is no match for his wealthy teammate Warren Worthington III, a.k.a. Angel, who is at first also romantically interested in Jean. What Scott doesn't know is that Jean actually has a crush on him, but is too shy to make a move. Finally, on Bobby Drake's 18th birthday, they reveal their passion for each other and become lovers.[volume & issue needed]
When the X-Men are defeated by Krakoa, Cyclops is the only member able to escape and return to Xavier. He helps train a new group of X-Men, which includes Storm, Colossus, Nightcrawler, Banshee, Thunderbird, Sunfire and Wolverine to rescue the others. When the other original X-Men (Angel, Beast, Iceman, Jean Grey, and later additions Havok (his own brother Alex) and Polaris) decide to leave in light of the arrival of the new X-Men, Cyclops stays, feeling that he will never be able to lead a normal life because of the uncontrollable nature of his powers.
At first, Scott believes that his parents died in the plane accident and is unaware that they, in fact, had been captured and sold into slavery by the Shi'ar. As an adult member of the X-Men, Cyclops meets his father, now known as Corsair, leader of the Starjammers, a group of aliens opposing what they see as the tyranny of the Shi'ar empire. Jean learns of Corsair's identity but keeps it from Scott and several more years pass before he learns his father's true identity. He later comes into contact with his grandparents, who he learns are still alive and own a shipping company in Canada.
Cyclops privately questions his relationship with Jean after Jean dies trying to pilot a space shuttle through a solar flare, and then is reborn as Phoenix, feeling that this reborn Jean was not the same Jean he had loved. Yet when he thinks her dead for an extended period of time after a battle in the Savage Land, Scott is not able to mourn her, and believes this meant he didn't really love her anymore. He briefly dates Colleen Wing. However, when Scott and Jean are reunited on Muir Island to fight Proteus, he rediscovers his love for her, and they share a passionate kiss on the way home. A few days before Jean dies, Scott psychically proposes, and she accepts. After her death, he quits the X-Men, unsure of what to do anymore. He signs on as crew of a fishing boat, captained by Lee Forrester. After an adventure in which Lee's father is possessed by D'Spayre, Cyclops and the Man-Thing must fight D'Spayre, Scott and Lee find themselves shipwrecked in the Bermuda Triangle, where they stumble upon Magneto's new base of operations.
Scott soon returns to the X-Men. He then discovers that Corsair is actually his father. Eventually, Scott marries Madelyne Pryor, a woman who bears a strong resemblance to Jean and he retires from the X-Men. Scott has a difficult time adjusting to life outside of the X-Men and, to his wife's dismay, he later challenges Storm to a battle in the Danger Room for leadership of the X-Men. Despite Storm no longer possessing her mutant powers, she defeats Cyclops. Madelyne gives birth to their son, Nathan, and Scott returns to retirement from the X-Men.
X-Factor and Inferno
Shortly after the birth of Nathan, it is revealed that Jean Grey was alive and had never been The Phoenix. The Phoenix is revealed to have been a cosmic entity who placed an injured Jean Grey in a healing pod at the bottom of Jamaica Bay and replaced her taking on her appearance and memories, not realizing that "she" herself was not the real Jean Grey. Years after Phoenix died, the real Jean Grey is eventually discovered and revived by the Avengers and the Fantastic Four. After hearing that Jean is alive, Cyclops leaves his wife and son and rejoins the other original X-Men as X-Factor, who pose as mutant hunters but in reality are trying to help their genetic brethren. Meanwhile, Pryor goes on to be an assisting member of the X-Men, apparently sacrificing her life during the Fall of the Mutants with her teammates, although she was left with feelings of despair over the loss of Scott, who felt bad himself over the way he had handled the situation.
The demons S'ym and N'astirh corrupt Madelyne's feelings of self-despair, transforming her into the Goblin Queen. Madelyne seeks revenge on Scott for leaving her. When it is revealed that she is a clone created by geneticist Mister Sinister, essentially for the purpose of becoming a brood mare, Madelyne can't take it any more and kills herself. Scott seemingly kills Sinister with an optic blast, and pursues a romance with Jean, reclaiming his son. Scott soon learns that Mister Sinister ran the orphanage in which Scott was raised, and battled Sinister over this.
Shortly after the X-Tinction Agenda, Scott reencounters Apocalypse, who infects Nathan with a techno-organic virus. Although Scott saves his son with the help of his teammates and through the combined strength of Nathan, Jean, and himself defeats Apocalypse, he was unable to save his son from the fatal infection. Distraught, Scott sends his son into the future where he can be cured.
Next, Xavier's psionic enemy, Shadow King, returns to combat the X-Men and X-Factor. After his defeat, Cyclops and X-Factor rejoin the X-Men team, and Scott is named leader of a newly created "Blue Team".
Return to the X-Men
After Cyclops's return as field leader,[volume & issue needed] much of the Blue team is kidnapped by Omega Red and the ninjas of The Hand.[volume & issue needed] After the captured teammates' rescue, Mr. Sinister sends Caliban, a former X-Factor member, to kidnap Cyclops and Jean for Stryfe, a madman and rival to Cable, both time-lost mutants.[volume & issue needed] Stryfe tells the two that he is Nathan, sent to the future and abandoned. In a fight, Cable and Stryfe apparently die.[volume & issue needed] Afterwards, the team battles Omega Red again, and teammate and telepath Psylocke tries to lure Cyclops into an affair behind Jean's back.[volume & issue needed] Ultimately, however, Cyclops remains with Jean.[volume & issue needed] Cable returns as well and reveals to Cyclops that he is the real Nathan Christopher Summers, while Stryfe is a clone of Nathan created in the event of his death who was stolen and raised by Apocalypse.[volume & issue needed]
Scott Summers and Jean Grey finally marry. During their honeymoon, they are brought into the future where they raise Cable for the first 12 years of his life during The Adventures of Cyclops and Phoenix miniseries. After helping Cable defeat the future version of Apocalypse, they are sent back to the past. At the request of Rachel Summers, Jean assumes the Phoenix identity. Mister Sinister, involved with the machinations of Apocalypse and Stryfe and still alive, tells Cyclops that there is another Summers brother, and leaves him wondering.
As Cyclops deals with the fact that his son is now old enough to be his father,[volume & issue needed] the X-Men are forced to battle their mentor when Professor Xavier is transformed into the evil Onslaught, as a result of his recent attempt to wipe Magneto's mind causing Magneto's darker impulses to merge with Xavier's own subconscious darkness and manifest as a new personality.[volume & issue needed] Although the X-Men defeat the evil entity and free Xavier, most of Earth's heroes are lost for a time.[volume & issue needed] Xavier, who is left powerless after Onslaught's defeat, is arrested for his part, leaving Scott and Jean as leaders and co-headmasters of the school.[volume & issue needed] However, the pair go into retirement following Operation: Zero Tolerance, in which Cyclops is gravely injured when a bomb is placed in his chest.[volume & issue needed]
Merging with Evil
Scott and Jean return to the X-Men some time after at the request of Storm, when she grows concerned about the mental well-being of Professor X (who had returned sometime prior). Their return then leads to the events of The Twelve, in which Apocalypse plans to use a machine to steal the powers of twelve select mutants and the body of Nate Grey which will make him virtually omnipotent.[volume & issue needed] In order to save Nate, Cyclops willingly merges with the villain Apocalypse. He is believed dead until Jean and Cable track him down to Egypt and separate him from Apocalypse, killing Apocalypse's spirit in the process.
Upon Cyclops's return to the X-Men following his possession, his personality has been altered as a result of being bonded with Apocalypse. This change causes a rift between him and Jean; he claims that Apocalypse made him question not only their relationship, but his life as a whole. He is instrumental in preventing the mutant Xorn's suicide and in recruiting the powerful mutant to the X-Men. The two establish a close friendship; similarly, repeated missions with Wolverine result in the growth of a tentative friendship between the two veteran X-Men.
When Jean begins to show signs of the Phoenix Force again, the distance between the two grows larger and Scott begins abstaining from sex with Jean for the five months. Jean attempts several times to confront Cyclops, but he continues to push her away, claiming that Apocalypse had changed him too much on the inside. Jean, confused by the change in their relationship, confides in Logan and the two kiss in the woods outside the school, but Logan walks away telling her that she should remain with Scott. Xavier leaves Earth while under the control of Cassandra Nova and Jean is left as Headmistress of the school. Her new responsibilities along with her growing powers, force Jean to put her attention elsewhere leaving Scott feeling ignored and his trauma from being possessed trivialized. Instead of attempting to reconcile with her, Scott turns to Emma Frost for consolation, feeling that he can talk to Emma about his problems. Their relationship ostensibly begins as a series of psychic therapy sessions, but Emma takes advantage of this situation to get closer to Scott. Under the guise of counseling him, she instigates a telepathic affair.
When Phoenix discovers the affair, Cyclops claims he and Emma shared only thoughts and thus had done nothing wrong. Meanwhile, Emma's snide and mocking jeers provoke a hurt and angry Jean to psychically confront her, using the full-power of the Phoenix Force to 'burn through lies'. She forces Emma to admit her true feelings for Scott, and to face her many failures, sins, and personal demons. Furious at both himself and Jean, Scott confronts Jean and demands that she read his mind; Jean finally complies, only to discover that Scott and Emma never engaged in any physical contact, though Emma had offered it. After confronting Jean with the truth, Scott leaves the Xavier Institute, and a short time later Emma is found shattered in her diamond form and believed killed.
Scott soon finds himself at the Hellfire Club which had been turned into a sleazy strip club and tries to get drunk, attempting to escape the responsibilities, expectations, and demands which he feels are unjustly placed on him by the X-Men. He then accompanies Wolverine and Fantomex to the government-created time-pocket called The World and then Asteroid M. During his time with Wolverine, Scott reveals that he feels his relationship with Jean is stagnant and that the two of them had not progressed romantically since their initial teenage romance. He also confesses that he feels that Jean is so concerned with the school and her new powers that the two no longer communicate like before and that he feels left behind due to Jean once again being connected to the Phoenix Force. When Scott finally returns to the X-Men, their new teammate Xorn (who was revealed to be Magneto, but was subsequently retconned as an imposter) attacks the X-Men. Having at last reached full Phoenix power, Jean confronts Xorn-Magneto and is killed in the process. As she is dying, Scott apologizes for hurting her, but Jean instead tells him that she understands and has never seen him more alive and urges him to live on.
Scott, however, is devastated by Jean's death, and considers leaving the X-Men once more. It was revealed in the "Here Comes Tomorrow" storyline that, had he done so, it would have led to an apocalyptic alternate future. To prevent this, a resurrected, future-version of Jean uses her powers as the White Phoenix of the Crown and telepathically nudged Cyclops into a real relationship with Emma, reaching out to him from this alternate future. Together, the pair rebuild the Xavier Institute as co-headmasters.
The new relationship between Emma and Scott leads to problems between them and the rest of the X-Men, all of whom believe that the pair are doing Jean's memory a disservice. Rachel Summers in particular feels hurt and angry by her father's lack of remorse for the psychic affair that hurt Jean before her death and Emma's part in it, and takes on the last name of Grey in place of Summers. The other X-Men eventually come to accept the relationship and both Scott and Emma manage to reconcile with Rachel in their own ways, such as introducing Rachel to Jean's other family members.
Deciding that the X-Men need to play more of a role in emergency rescue and aid, and thus garner attention on mutants in a more positive light where mutant abilities are used for the good of people, Cyclops hand-picks a new team in Astonishing X-Men of himself, Emma, Beast, Kitty Pryde, and Wolverine, which is subsequently used by Marvel as the chief representation of the X-Men.[volume & issue needed] The team faces an alien named Ord of the Breakworld, who supplies Earth scientist Dr. Kavita Rao with a "cure" for mutation.[volume & issue needed] The team subdue Ord and rescue the resurrected Colossus, but not before learning that one of their own will be responsible for the destruction of Ord's homeworld in the coming year.[volume & issue needed] Not long after, the X-Men's Danger Room becomes sentient, attacking the X-Men and seeking to ultimately kill Xavier. Calling itself "Danger", "she" reveals that Xavier knew she had been self-aware since Shi'ar technology was installed in the Danger Room years ago, but chose to ignore her, effectively inhumanely using her only to train his teams of X-Men.[volume & issue needed] After her defeat on the island of Genosha, the X-Men abandoned Xavier in disgust, with Cyclops no longer welcoming Xavier's input at the School or with the team.[volume & issue needed]
In Astonishing X-Men #14, during an impromptu telepathic "therapy session", Emma Frost presented Cyclops with the possibility that his lack of control over his optic blasts actually stems not from physical brain damage, but from a sort of mental block that the young Scott imposed upon himself after the combined traumas of the loss of his parents, separation from his brother, and shocking manifestation of his powers; this is seen as a coping mechanism, giving Scott something to focus on and try to maintain some sort of control over at a time when events completely out of his control had effectively shattered the life he had led up to that point.
Scott admits that this theory is the truth, further admitting that he had blocked making this decision out of his memory, to preserve the fallacy in his own mind and prevent others from discovering his "secret". The issue ends with Scott apparently in a catatonic state, with his eyes uncovered and displaying their natural shade of brown, with no evidence of his powers manifesting. Later he manifests, and has full control over his optical blasts, although it was only temporary.
After the events of House of M, nearly all mutants were left depowered, and Xavier was missing. A mysterious villain then attacked and easily defeated several members of the team, including Cyclops and his alternate-reality daughter, Rachel. The two were captured and taken to an undisclosed location, which Cyclops vaguely remembered visiting in the past. Eventually managing to free themselves, Cyclops and Rachel attempted to escape, only to run into their captor (revealed to be Vulcan), who informed Cyclops that he was the X-Man's younger brother. A powerless Professor Xavier confirmed this information in the final book of the miniseries. This new information has left Cyclops resentful towards his mentor and has gone so far as to demand that Xavier leave the school as it is no longer 'his'.[volume & issue needed]
Cyclops, along with the other living original X-Men, declare neutrality on the subject of Civil War, reasoning that the X-Men sympathized too much with Captain America's side – who, like the X-Men, were persecuted for wanting to do the right thing – but believed that the mutant race had suffered too great a loss recently to take a side either way due to the recent depowerment of so many mutants. Bishop leaves the team to join the Registration supporters and locate the escaped 198. In Civil War: X-Men #2, Cyclops under mind control of Johnny Dee helps the futuristic X-Man in recovering them. Cyclops is then manipulated into attacking Bishop which he does by overloading Bishop's power of energy absorption.
World War Hulk
Cyclops is listed at IGN as a target on Hulk's "Hit List" of characters. He is seen fighting the Hulk in World War Hulk: X-Men #1 and in issue #2, he uses a full beam blast to stop the Hulk, refusing to let the Hulk take Professor Xavier regardless of his own feelings towards his mentor regarding the truth about Krakoa. While it peels off some of the Hulk's skin, he was able to walk towards Cyclops and clench his entire face, effectively containing the blast. After Hulk left when Mercury told him about the mutant race being near-extinct, Cyclops began to forgive Professor X while the wounded were being tended to.
Cyclops leads a team to Alaska to find the new mutant detected by Cerebro. When the team arrives, they find nearly every child in the town killed, dead Marauders and Purifiers, and the baby gone. He sends a team consisting of Wolverine, Nightcrawler, Angel, and Colossus to find former Acolytes for information on the Marauders. He argues with Xavier, who complains about not telling him about his team. Scott tells Xavier it's not his X-Men any more and that he can do what he wants. Scott also calls in X-Factor to help with the situation, asks Rictor to infiltrate the Purifiers, and asks Madrox and Layla Miller to go see Forge. Upon discovering that Cable has kidnapped the newborn mutant, Cyclops orders the reforming of X-Force with Wolverine leading the team. Their first mission is to hunt down Cable and retrieve the baby. Cyclops later breaks all ties with Professor X and asks him to leave the mansion, as Xavier continues to question Cyclops's judgement. Later on, Cyclops is seen with his own team and X-Factor, to help out Wolverine against the Reavers and to capture the baby from Cable. Cable eludes the X-Men.
After finding the Marauders' hideout on Muir Island, Cyclops dispatches X-Force and Bishop to go there and retrieve the baby. During the final battle, Cyclops sends the New X-Men against the Marauders, believing that Sinister's forces will be caught off guard by unfamiliar opponents. The students prove to be effective. Cyclops then confronts Cable demanding the baby. Cable, with a gun pointed at his father, begs Cyclops to let him escape into the future with the baby. However, Cable gives the child to Cyclops, after Xavier points out that the future of all mutantkind is at stake and Cyclops, as leader of the X-Men, speaks for mutantkind. Cyclops holds the baby and, realizing that the child deserves the chance to make its own destiny, gives her back to Cable. Cable teleports to the future just as Bishop fires a round at the child. The shot misses her and hits Xavier in the head. Cyclops strikes Bishop with an optic blast, and Cyclops declares the X-Men disbanded.
During the interim period, Cyclops goes on a vacation with Emma to the Savage Land after refusing Tony Stark's request to have the X-Men as part of the Fifty State Initiative. There, they are contacted by Warren asking them for assistance in San Francisco. Scott and Emma are successful in rescuing not only Warren and the other X-Men, but also in rescuing San Francisco as a whole. As a result, the Mayor of the city offers to help the X-Men reestablish themselves in the city. After building a new headquarters, Cyclops sends word to all the world's mutants that San Francisco, which has welcomed the X-Men with open-arms, is now a safe haven for mutant-kind and that all are welcomed to join them. The X-Men's presence is widely approved of by San Francisco, including the police, who now hire the team to aid them in cases that might be out of their area.
Cyclops dispatches Wolverine to track down Mystique and revives X-Force as a clandestine black-ops team whose mission is to take down threats to mutankind that they cannot deal with while under the public eye. Cyclops places Wolverine in charge of the team and resolutely keeps X-Force's existence secret from the other X-Men, including Emma Frost (manifested as a psychic "black box" in his mind that Emma is unable to open), also demanding that X-Force remain unknown to the public. However, Cyclops utilizes other X-Men for parts of the groups mission, including Beast and the Stepford Cuckoos. The team is sometimes less careful, leaving blood-stained clothing around, piquing Emma's suspicions. The controversy of Cyclops's decisions as leader of the X-Men is further highlighted during the Skrull invasion of San Francisco when he readily utilizes biological warfare against the Skrulls by knowingly infecting them with an adapted version of the Mutant Legacy Virus created by Beast without first determining if there was also a cure.
In another controversial decision, Cyclops sends X-Force to track down the Leper Queen who is infecting mutants with a strain of the Legacy Virus to use their uncontrolled powers in attacks against humanity in order to stir up anti-mutant hysteria. While on the mission, Beast locates Cable in the future and Cyclops orders X-Force to abandon the current mission and prepare for transport to the future to assist Cable and the baby, Hope. Despite knowing that the Leper Queen has kidnapped and intends to kill Hellion, Surge, and Boom Boom, and despite the protests from both X-Force and Beast that a few more minutes is all that is needed to kill her and save the students, Cyclops makes the difficult decision to activate the time machine. Though Domino is only moments away from killing the Leper Queen, the team is transported to the future and the Leper Queen appears to shoot Boom Boom in the head, while Hellion and Surge are injected and sent to the United Nations building for another attack. Upon his return to the present Wolverine confronts Cyclops on the risks he took in making that decision.[volume & issue needed]
Mutant/Anti-mutant rioting and the return of Madelyne Pryor
Footage of Cooperstown, Alaska from X-Men: Messiah Complex is eventually released to the media by Simon Trask, designed to deceive the public into believing that the destruction was caused by the newborn mutant messiah rather than the Purifiers. The footage, coupled with Trask's newly formed "Humanity Now! Coalition" pushing anti-mutant legislation, dubbed "Proposition X", aiming to control mutant reproduction, causes an increase in mutant hate crimes, causing Scott to open the X-Men's base to anyone seeking refuge. During this time, his growing secrecy concerning X-Force and Emma's suspicions that he is keeping something from her begin creating a rift between them. Taking advice from Storm that Scott's actions are always in the best interest of mutant-kind, Emma secretly agrees to participate in Norman Osborn's Cabal in her own attempt to ensure the protection of the mutant population.
Scott encounters his dead ex-wife, Madelyne Pryor, again when she inexplicably returns as a psychic ghost, calling herself the Red Queen and with a newly assembled all-female team of mutants calling themselves the Sisterhood. Her team attacks the X-Men and Madelyne steals a lock of Jean's hair in Wolverine's possession, with the goal of using it to locate and inhabit Jean's body, allowing her to be reborn. Scott employs Domino to exhume Jean's grave and swap her body with another. Unaware of the switch and spurning Scott's attempt to reach out to her, Madelyne attempts to possess the body, but seemingly disintegrates into nothingness as no other body than Jean Grey's can house an entity of Madelyne's level of power.
After the battle with Madelyne and the Sisterhood, Beast confronts Scott and Emma, stating that he is aware of both of their clandestine actions and that they will discuss them at length together or their secrets will tear the X-Men apart. In the limited crossover tie-in, Dark X-Men/Dark Avengers: Utopia, the growing unrest among the mutant population and calculated instigation from Trask and Humanity Now! leads to violent rioting from mutants against the anti-mutant coalition in San Francisco. Though supported by the mayor, Cyclops is largely viewed as the leader of the remaining mutant population by the media and he takes the brunt of negative media and public opinion, implicated as endorsing and sending the X-Men to lead the rioting. Trask capitalizes on the hysteria, portraying Humanity Now! as victims of oppression in order to push Proposition X. Norman Osborn utilizes the Dark Avengers to stop the riots and arrest Cyclops and his team of X-Men, calling in Emma to lead a new team of "Dark" X-Men. Emma agrees to lead the team, which will answer to Osborn, as the Black Queen. Marvel writer Matt Fraction indicated that Emma's alliance with Osborn places Scott and Emma at odds with one another, creating "a profound schism". Cyclops travels to Osborn's base on Alcatraz Island to speak with him. Osborn tells Cyclops that they can end the riots and hysteria here right now but Cyclops interrupts him and orders him to surrender. A shocked Osborn asks what he means, and Cyclops replies that Osborn needs to get the riots under control and then withdraw H.A.M.M.E.R. and the Dark Avengers and leave San Francisco to him and the X-Men. When Osborn refuses Cyclops leaves, telling Osborn that he tried. After Cyclops leaves, Osborn tells Victoria Hand that when the time comes Osborn is going to kill Cyclops personally.
As Emma's Dark X-Men slowly get the city under control, Cyclops continues to form his plans to deal with the situation. Scott assigns his X-Men (such as Mirage, Domino, Mindee Cuckoo, and Psylocke) different tasks, as well as having another team observe Emma's team, as they deal with a group of bio-sentinels attacking San Francisco. When asked how they're expected to take out both the Dark X-Men and Dark Avengers, Scott retorts "Who said you're the squad that's supposed to stop the Avengers?"
Scott's plan finally comes together as he has Magik teleport X-Force into H.A.M.M.E.R's Alcatraz Island, where they take on the Dark X-Men and Avengers, while Magik teleports all the captured mutants to safety. X-Force is aided by Emma and Namor, who are revealed to be double-agents against Osborn. Immediately after, Scott has the X-Club resurrect Asteroid M which crashed into the Pacific Coast a few years prior. Cyclops then orders Magik and Pixie to teleport every X-Man and allied mutant to what he now calls 'Utopia'. During a press conference, Cyclops informs the world that they have left the United States and that they reject Norman Osborn and his methods.
During this time period, Cyclops struggles to define what he wants Utopia to be (nation/base/etc.) Utopia is attacked by numerous threats, including the events of "Necrosha", "Infernus 2", and "Fear Itself". After the discovery of X-Force, Beast leaves Utopia and blames Cyclops for terrible judgement in how he is running Utopia.[volume & issue needed]
Second Coming and Age Of Heroes
Sometime after Utopia began, Cable returns to present day Westchester, New York with Hope Summers, the baby believed to be the mutant Messiah. As Cable had no idea that Cyclops and the X-Men moved to Utopia, Cyclops deploys his senior team of X-Men to search and rescue just as the purifiers and Nimrod begin their attack on Cable and Hope. During the rescue, Nightcrawler is killed teleporting Hope back to Utopia. Cyclops holds a funeral for his fallen friend (one of the few who really believed in Scott's belief of the mutant messiah). Beast arrives on Utopia for the funeral and blames Cyclops for the loss of Nightcrawler. Shortly after, an impenetrable field surrounds Utopia and sentinels from the future begin to attack. Cyclops is forced to send a team of X-Men into the future led by Cable, but upon their return Cyclops and Hope watch Cable die from a combination of the techno virus and time travel. After Nimrod and the purifiers are defeated, Cyclops holds a funeral for his fallen son. As Emma Frost witnesses a sign of the Phoenix manifesting in Hope, she runs to tell Scott who dismisses her as he sees he was right all along: Cerebra detected 5 brand new mutant signals. Cyclops deploys Hope to recruit the new mutant signals and they become her team known as "The Lights". Shortly after, Cyclops is awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom on the request of Commander Steve Rogers for his acts, but subsequently discards it as he wants to focus on doing what is right for the people rather than worrying about how his actions are perceived by others.
A possessed Juggernaut escapes Thunderbolts captivity and begins to make his way west to San Francisco to either destroy Utopia or destroy San Francisco, depending on which side would give up the other first. Cyclops deploys multiple attempts to stop the Norse-powered Juggernaut to no avail. As one of his final plans, Cyclops sends Magik, Colossus, and Shadowcat to meet with Cyttorak to convince him to take away the powers he gave Juggernaut. Cyttorak agrees in exchange for making Colossus the new Juggernaut avatar and is able to push Cain Marko back until Cain is summoned by The Serpent.
At the beginning of Schism, Cyclops thanks Wolverine for always being there for him as they seem to finally have come to a mutually unspoken yet understood respect for each other after years of fighting and rivalry. While at a conference for weapon control, Kid Omega (Quentin Quire) launches a psychic terrorist attack on the ambassadors present. In response, sentinels are deployed at the conference and are disposed of by Cyclops and Wolverine. Due to growing fears of mutant threat, countries around the world begin to mobilize their Sentinel forces. Cyclops begins to deploy X-Men around the globe to deal with the threat. Sometime after, Kid Omega shows up on Utopia to plead for amnesty. Wolverine tries to attack Kid Omega when Cyclops stops him. When Kid Omega insults Wolverine, Cyclops defends Wolverine and commands Quentin to be quiet. Later, Cyclops sends a team to a local mutant museum exhibit as a "show of force". The new Hellfire Club attacks the exhibit and incapacitates all senior X-Men present. As Cyclops flies to the museum from Utopia and Wolverine rushes to help, Idie asks if she should kill the Hellfire Club to help. While Wolverine protests against it profusely, Cyclops tells Idie to do what she feels is right. Idie kills almost every Hellfire Club member left to save her friends and mentors. Wolverine pops his claws at Cyclops in anger but restrains himself when he realizes what he's doing.
However, the new Hellfire Club activates a special giant Sentinel, sent towards Utopia. With most of the X-Men far from Utopia and part of the team being in the med-lab, young mutant messiah Hope Summers and other teenage mutants volunteer to join Cyclops in the fight against the super Sentinel. Wolverine is opposed to the idea of putting children on the front lines against the Sentinel; when Cyclops insists that everyone who wants to fight should fight, Wolverine gets a detonator and threatens to blow up Utopia in order to make the youngsters run away from the island and destroy the super Sentinel. Cyclops and Wolverine's frustration with each other come to a head when Cyclops brings up Jean Grey. The two fight each other in a rage while being attacked by the sentinel.
Eventually, the super Sentinel threat forces them to stop fighting each other and join Hope and the other young mutants in the battle against the Sentinel, and the Sentinel is finally taken down. But the ideological differences between Cyclops and Wolverine makes Wolverine decide to leave Utopia and bring along whoever wants to come with him. Both men eventually start recruiting their teammates; some members of the X-Men leave with Wolverine, while part of the team stays in Utopia with Cyclops.
While Wolverine doesn't leave as an enemy of Cyclops and his X-Men, he makes clear he wants both sides to stay out of the other's business. Various X-Men leave for various reasons; Rogue, as an example, departs because she feels that Cyclops has reached a point where his previous willingness to question his decisions has been replaced by an inability to accept when he might be wrong. With the X-Men who have chosen to leave alongside him, Wolverine returns to Westchester, New York to open the Jean Grey School for the Gifted while Cyclops organizes new teams of X-Men and remains on Utopia.
Avengers Vs. X-Men
With the discovery that the Phoenix Force is returning to Earth, apparently to use Hope as a host, Cyclops believes Hope as Phoenix can be used to 'jump-start' the mutant population. Captain America, fearing that the Phoenix will come to Earth and destroy everything, assembles a force of Avengers aboard a S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier and using the S.H.I.E.L.D. cloaking technology travels to Utopia to confront Cyclops. Upon arriving on Utopia, Captain America orders Cyclops to transfer Hope to his protective custody. Assuming that Captain America will not take no for answer Cyclops refuses and uses his optic blast to push the Captain back into the sea. Captain America then orders the Avengers take the beach and apprehend the mutant, Hope. Cyclops denounces the Avengers as having always seen the mutants as 'ugly stepchildren' and will now seek to actively undermine them after they acquired a "messiah". During battle, Hope escapes Utopia. After Hope escapes, Cyclops orders the X-Men to surrender and ends the fighting. Once Magik returns to Utopia, Cyclops directs Magik to use her teleportation power to facilitate the X-Men's escape.
Cyclops scatters the X-Men across the globe with the mission to prevent the Avengers from capturing Hope. Hope seeks out Wolverine for help. Wolverine aids Hope in traveling to the Blue Area of the Moon but then calls the Avengers to inform them of Hope's location. Cyclops and a select group of X-Men arrive to stop Hope's capture. Iron Man fails in his attempt to disrupt the Phoenix Force. As a result, the Phoenix Force is divided and instead inhabits five X-Men present on the moon none of which is Hope. Cyclops, one of the new Phoenix avatars, travels back to Earth with an unconscious Hope.[volume & issue needed] The newly dubbed Phoenix Five begin to transform the world. The world's transformation beings as a utopian society which descends to a police state as the avatars are corrupted by the power of the Phoenix and are unable to control their desires, impulses, fantasies and whims from changing reality. Wanda teleports Hope away and Cyclops declares that there will be no more Avengers.[volume & issue needed]
In defense against the combined assault of the Avengers and the X-Men, Cyclops kills Xavier and attacks Emma Frost, absorbing her portion of the Phoenix Force and elevating to Dark Phoenix. In pitched battle, the Avengers and X-Men weaken Cyclops enough for Hope to absorb the Phoenix Force into herself. She undoes the changes to the world caused by Cyclops and she and the Scarlet Witch then spread out the Phoenix Force across the globe, causing thousands of people to become mutants. Cyclops is held captive in a ruby quartz cell and while guilt-stricken over killing Xavier, he is happy over the mutant race restarted and claims he would do it all over again.
Captain America convinces Wolverine to visit Cyclops, who is being held in a specialized private prison created for the reemerged mutant population, to learn where his Extinction Team might be hiding. Cyclops baits Wolverine into trying to kill him, but Wolverine lets up once he realizes that Cyclops wants to die and be made a martyr. Once returned to general population, Cyclops is joined by Jake, the only other mutant inmate in the prison. The pair soon realize that all the guards have left as three inmates approach them brandishing shivs. When the inmates move towards Jake, Cyclops tells the inmates to leave him out of this. The tattooed inmate states to Cyclops that their issue is with all mutants as he and the other two inmates attack them. However, due to his training in martial arts, Cyclops was able to defeat the three inmates. After that, he had a talk with Jake who revealed his origin to Cyclops. Cyclops then tells Jake about the Jean Grey School and they might take older students. Later that night, Cyclops uses metal filings to communicate with Magneto and tell him not to break him out as he must stay a prisoner, a political prisoner and he will not let them turn him into a criminal.
Cyclops allows Iron Man to study him for remaining effects of the Phoenix Force. As he is leaving, Jake is murdered by the mutant-hating inmates. Depressed at this action, Cyclops ends up taking up the earlier offer from Magneto to break him out of prison. Magneto, Magik, and Danger break Cyclops out of prison. Before leaving with Magneto, Magik, and Danger, Cyclops has Magik send Jake's murderers to Limbo and has Danger disfigure the corrupt warden by carving an X on his face. The Avengers arrive to find the prison demolished and abandoned except for the warden who delivers a message from Cyclops to Wolverine stating that he will support Wolverine's school and continue to fight for mutant rights, noting that now that Wolverine has taken the role of "the better man", Cyclops can be "the man who does what's necessary". Cyclops, Magneto and Magik watch a newscaster advocating putting mutants in concentration camps. When Magneto asks Cyclops if killing Neanderthal newsmen falls within their purview, Cyclops tells him it does not. Magneto warns him that they're embarking on something completely different now, but Cyclops tells him he's wrong saying that just like before... they're hated, feared, and saving the world.
Post-Avengers vs. X-Men
With the X-Men disturbed at Scott's more violent policies — including attacking police officers and various officials for illegally detaining mutants after their powers manifested — but unwilling to actively confront him for fear of triggering a mutant civil war, a chance comment by Iceman inspires Beast to pursue a new solution; he travels back in time to recruit the Scott Summers from the early days of Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters to convince the present Scott that what he was doing was wrong. It is also speculated that those who either possessed or had strong interactions with the Phoenix Force have had their abilities altered in varying ways. This leaves the present day Cyclops with little to no control over his powers.
It is also revealed that the "Mutant Revolution" and Cyclops in particular have gained popular support among the general public, despite continued distrust and animosity from the Avengers and X-Men.
Later it was revealed that the reason for this alteration was not from the exposure to the Phoenix Force but because they had been infected by Dark Beast with nano-sentinels. Once they removed the nano-sentinels from their bodies, they regained total control over their powers.
New Xavier School
Cyclops has made a new base in the old Weapon X facility in Canada to train new mutants with Emma Frost, Magik and Magneto. He calls it New Xavier School for the Gifted. It was revealed that Scott, Emma, Illyana and Magneto had been infected with nanite sentinels that had corrupted their powers and caused them to be unpredictable. Cyclops then begins recruiting new mutants for his new Uncanny X-Men. He uses Cerebro to find new mutants and often clashes with Sentinels, S.H.I.E.L.D., the Avengers, and even mutants from the future during the Battle of the Atom.
Storms finds Cyclops's new school in order to tell him that Xavier's last will and testament will be read in Westchester and they will allow him back on the original school's campus again. After the reading of Xavier's will, in which he left everything to the present Scott and noted that he always saw Scott as a son, Scott decided to close the New Xavier School and send all his students to the Jean Grey School, reflecting that he had simply started making threats after all other methods had failed but was now forced to recognize that such an action wasn't what Xavier would have wanted of him, admitting that he had never had a real plan for what would happen if someone tried to make him enforce those threats.
Cyclops, after finally realizing what his mutant revolution is, gathered all world mutants at the White House to show humans that the mutants could all gather in one place without creating harm to the human race. Some X-Men were reluctant to appreciate Cyclops's genius act, while other endorsed him, such as Nightcrawler, his brother Havok and finally Magneto, who stated that, even if Cyclops's actions seemed insane, Xavier would have loved this.
At some point during the future Time Runs Out storyline, Cyclops acquires a Phoenix Egg which he holds in reserve, hoping to use it to end the Incursions.
During the Secret Wars storyline, Cyclops stands on top of the Phoenix Egg during the incursion between Earth-616 and Earth-1610. Cyclops eventually uses the Phoenix Egg to become one with the Phoenix Force again and uses his powers to decimate the Children of Tomorrow, before joining most of the surviving heroes from his universe in their 'life raft', his fellow survivors including Mister Fantastic, Carol Danvers (now known as Captain Marvel), Spider-Man, Black Panther, the new Thor, and Star-Lord. They remain in stasis for a time until they are released by Doctor Strange- who survived the incursions on his own- and meet Miles Morales, the successor to the Ultimate universe's original Spider-Man. Learning that Strange is now Doctor Doom's sheriff, the heroes set out to learn more about where they are now and what's the situation in the present world. Although Cyclops's Phoenix-influenced state initially accepts the new world that Doom has created following the destruction of the Multiverse, he joins the other survivors in attacking Doctor Doom. The Phoenix Force actually allows Cyclops to hold his own for a time against Doom's Beyonder-acquired powers, but the fight ends with Doom breaking Cyclops's neck.
Following Secret Wars and the restoration of Earth-616, Cyclops was killed during Death of X, when the X-Men discovered that the released Terrigen mists were fatal to mutants upon exposure. Cyclops was one of the first victims of the M-Pox, although Emma Frost used a telepathic projection of him to rally mutant attempts to destroy a Terrigenesis cloud, subsequently faking his death in a final confrontation with Black Bolt to create a détente between mutants and Inhumans so that the two could work on saving mutants while leaving each other alone. Only the Stepford Cuckoos, Havok and Magneto were aware of Emma's deception (and Magneto only aware because his helmet prevented Emma from altering his mind).
Although the specific details of his death were not known to the public, eight months later, several mutant youths regarded Cyclops as a figure of inspiration for standing up for their rights. This led to problems for the young Cyclops, who is disgusted at what his future self has become and resents the legacy he is seemingly destined to leave. He travels the country hunting down a team of villains calling themselves "The Ghosts of Cyclops" who claim to be fighting for mutant rights, but are really using their powers to steal. It turns out they are just college students and the All-New X-Men come to save them. Cyclops convinces them to turn themselves in rather than fight the police. He vows to not go down the same destructive path as older Cyclops. Storm in particular is recorded as blaming the elder Cyclops for spreading the M-Pox.
With the disappearance of Colossus and Magik at the hands of the Marauders, the X-Men confronted Mr. Sinister only to discover that he was experimenting on unwilling subjects, to try to make Inhuman and Mutant DNA co-exist in order to allow the creation of a genetically superior species of mutants who could survive the Terrigen Mist. To their surprise, Sinister deployed his only successful specimen, the seemingly-revived Cyclops. Cyclops however, was soon revealed to be actually another experiment created by Sinister who combined Scott Summers' genetic material with Inhuman DNA.
When the Phoenix attempts to return once again by bringing the adult Jean Grey back to life, it allows her to talk with what appears to be Cyclops' spirit, but after reading his mind about the events that led to his death, Jean simply expresses regret that she wasn't there to help him, the two apologizing for the way things ended before she and Scott agree that they belong dead. 'Scott' subsequently ages rapidly and dies in Jean's arms, Jean informing the Phoenix that all she wanted was to say goodbye to her husband.
Beast hoped that bringing the original X-Men into the present would remind Cyclops of why Xavier created the X-Men and prevent a mutant genocide. The original X-Men then decide they want to stay and become the All New X-Men. Both Cyclops join forces when faced with the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants from the future, who come to the present and try to force the Original X-Men back into the past. This results in the Battle of the Atom crossover.[volume & issue needed] When the time-displaced Jean Grey is later kidnapped by the Shi'ar and placed on trial for the destruction done by the Phoenix Force years earlier in the 2014 crossover storyline Trial of Jean Grey, the teenage Cyclops and the All-New X-Men team up with the Guardians of the Galaxy and Starjammers, and rescue Jean from the Shi'ar homeworld.[volume & issue needed] The younger Cyclops learns that his father Corsair is alive, and decides to follow him out to space and leaves the X-Men. He also secretly wants some time apart from Jean Grey, who is showing feelings toward younger Hank McCoy.
In his own spin-off series, young Cyclops enjoys spending time with the father he thought was dead. They get marooned on a hostile alien planet, hunted by dangerous bounty hunters, and are kidnapped by the villainous Space Pirate Captain Valesh Malafect. Cyclops even develops a relationship with the Captain's daughter Vileena. They eventually meet up with the Guardians of the Galaxy and the All-New X-Men during the events of The Black Vortex. After Secret Wars ends Cyclops leads a team of young X-Men consisting of the time-displaced X-Men along with Wolverine, Oya, and Evan Sabahnur with the hopes of shaking off the legacies left for them by their older counterparts.
Inhumans vs. X-Men
Despite facing his future self's reputation as the man who attempted to destroy the Inhumans with his final act, the young Cyclops nevertheless sides with the other X-Men when they go to war with the Inhumans over the creation of the Terrigenesis clouds. However, during this fight, young Cyclops is briefly possessed by the body-jumping Inhuman Mosaic, which results in him witnessing a memory Mosaic saw when he possessed Magneto of Magneto and Emma Frost standing over the future Cyclops' body after he died of M-pox. This leads to young Cyclops realizing that his future self did not die attacking the Inhumans, prompting him to vow to go after Emma Frost for what she did to his reputation. He exposes the truth about her actions at the conclusion of the war with the Inhumans when Emma tries to continue the conflict even after Medusa destroys the Terrigenesis cloud to save the mutants at the cost of the Inhumans' future, ignoring Emma's attempts to claim that she did what Scott would have done if he could.
After becoming inspired by a viral speech made by Ms Marvel, the young Cyclops decides to join the new Champions team. After misreading a situation and attacking Hulk, initially the Champions attack him and restrain him. After hearing his pitch and putting it to a vote they decide to not make the same mistakes made in the most recent Civil War and not judge him for the actions of his future self, agreeing to let him join the team. Due to his experience in leading the X-Men, many of the Champions look to him for leadership. However, a leader is never formally chosen.
After Inhumans vs. X-Men ended, the young Cyclops was determined to return to his own timeline but upon returning to the past, he is crestfallen to realize that their timeline is not the same as the Earth-616 timeline. This knowledge places Cyclops into a stupor as now the time-displaced X-Men do not know what timeline they are originally from. With the new knowledge that they are from a separate timeline entirely, Cyclops and the time-displaced X-Men leave the rest of the X-Men to find their place. After joining Magneto's team of X-Men in Madripoor, Cyclops steps down from leadership and Marvel Girl leads the team.
Powers and abilities
Cyclops emits beams of energy from his eyes, described as "optic blasts", which have the appearance of red light and deliver massive concussive force. His cells constantly absorb solar energy and he can use some that energy to create an opening to another universe in front of his eyes. The beams fire from these openings. The beams cause recoil or heat, are tremendously powerful, and can be used to rupture steel plates and pulverize rock, or even punch a hole trough a mountain. The beams constantly emanate from his eyes involuntarily, and can generally only be stopped by his own eyelids, or by shielding his eyes with "ruby-quartz", a translucent mineral; Cyclops wears ruby-quartz as lenses in glasses or in his visor, which is generally the only way for him to safely see without inadvertently damaging his surroundings. The beams' involuntary nature has been explained as a psychological shortcoming that resulted from childhood trauma. Cyclops can nevertheless manipulate the beams in several different ways, partially through the use of adjustable apertures in his eyewear that allow the beams to fire through their shielding at variable levels.
In addition to varying the beam width, height, and intensity, Cyclops has demonstrated a high degree of skill and accuracy in manipulating his optic blast. Cyclops is able to reflect the beam off hard and shiny surfaces. This feat also demonstrates his intuitive sense of spatial geometry between objects. The reflective qualities of the beams allows him to bounce the beam off many different surfaces in rapid succession. It has been observed to be focused tight enough to punch a pin hole through a coin, drill through the trunk of a log, and pierce the skin of the Blob. Cyclops has shown the power of his optic blast by blasting through the walls of a hardened building, tunneling through solid rock, and blowing the top off a mountain. Cyclops's force beams were measured by Iron Man to be almost 2 gigawatts. Two gigawatts is about half the peak power output of the Doel Nuclear Power Plant and when Cyclops released this much energy he exceeded his control over his optic beam. With Cyclops unable to shut off his optic beam, Leech came to his aid and negated his mutant power. Against other Marvel characters, Cyclops has been able to use his optic beam to knock Thor's Hammer from his hand. He is known to be able to overload Bishop's energy absorption power and is revealed to never have willingly used more than a small fraction of his full potential due to his anxiety regarding his optic blast.
Early accounts describe Cyclops's optic beams as the product of his body metabolizing sunlight and other ambient energy. This is similar to his brother Alex (alias Havok) who metabolizes cosmic radiation. This metabolized energy is then released in the form of the beam from his eyes. In some stories Cyclops depletes his body's energy reserves and needs to recharge through exposure to sunlight. When depleted, Cyclops continued to emit the beams; however, their intensity was greatly diminished. One story showed him able to safely open his eyes when in complete darkness-without any ambient light to absorb, his power diminished to the point that he did not need his visor.[volume & issue needed]
The original 1983 Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe volume stated that Cyclops's eyes contain inter-dimensional apertures, releasing powerful energies from another dimension into his own via the beams. This account states that his body naturally metabolizes ambient energy that is used to open and focus the apertures in his eyes. The energy of the beam itself originates from this other dimension. This explanation, however, was later changed for the 1986 Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition.
Cyclops's body is naturally immune to the force of his own beams. His mind projects a psionic field that envelops his body rendering it immune to his optic beam, allowing him to shut it off by simply closing his eyes. Scott is also immune to the power of his brother Alex (Havok) who has the ability to emit waves of energy that heat the air into plasma. Likewise Havok has demonstrated immunity to Cyclops's optic beam. Scott has been shown as being able to absorb Storm's lightning bolt, although this act caused Cyclops a great deal of pain. The ruby quartz used in his battle visor has been said to resonate with his body's psionic field. Scott has only a limited resistance to his brother Vulcan's powers.
For all Cyclops's skill in manipulating his optic beam, it continuously projects from his eyes whenever they are open and unprotected. To prevent the destruction of any objects in his field of view, Cyclops uses a pair of ruby quartz eyeglasses developed by Professor X to contain the devastating rays. In his X-Men uniform he uses a ruby quartz battle visor in place of the glasses. The crystal is said to resonate at the same frequency as the psionic field that protects Cyclops (and Havok) from their own powers.[volume & issue needed] His uniform has firing studs incorporated into his gloves and on the sides of the battle visor that control the visor's aperture. In the event that the visor has a power failure, the apertures are spring-loaded to automatically close so Cyclops can at least see normally. He has also been observed using casual sunglasses and contact lenses made from the same ruby quartz as his visor lens.
Cyclops's poor control over his power is attributed to events in his childhood, initially described as being due to a head wound, disabling his brain's ability to turn off his optic blasts. Later depictions explained that his lack of control is psychosomatic and due to the emotionally traumatic events of his childhood. This later explanation allowed Cyclops to finally control his optic blasts for a short time during a mission on the Breakworld, though at the conclusion of these events, he revealed that he was beginning to lose control again and reverted to using his visor and lenses.
Cyclops's power has been altered by his exposure to the Phoenix Force. His optic blasts are more powerful, now appearing as multiple curved beams. His optic blasts can even cause Dormammu pain. However he would afterwards be infected with nano-sentinels that made him lose control over his power even further, to the point that his blasts became inaccurate, activating on their own and becoming even more unstable. The end of the issue concludes with Beast purging the nano-sentinels from both Cyclops and Magik, giving him control over his still altered optic blasts.[volume & issue needed]
- Spatial Awareness: Cyclops seems to possess an uncanny sense of geometry, in this sense used to describe his observation of objects around himself and the angles found between surfaces of these objects. Cyclops has repeatedly demonstrated the ability to cause his optic blasts to ricochet and/or reflect off those objects in a trajectory to his liking. This is commonly called a "banked shot" when applied to this talent. Cyclops has been observed causing beams to reflect from over a dozen surfaces in the course of one blast, and still hit his intended target accurately. It is his sense of superhumanly enhanced spatial awareness that allows him to perform these feats as well. On two occasions Cyclops has been fast enough to blindly predict the position of Quicksilver and Northstar who were moving at superhuman speeds with enough accuracy to hit them with his optic blast.
- Expert Pilot: Cyclops is an expert pilot of fixed-wing aircraft, a skill he appears to have inherited from his father. It has also been implied that his geometric sense improves his abilities in the air.
- Master Tactician and Strategist: Cyclops has spent most of his superhero career as the leader of either the X-Men or X-Factor and has developed exceptional leadership skills. According to Nick Fury's files, Scott's abilities are at their best in tense situations. Fury notes that the less time Cyclops has to think about a decision, the better that decision is. Even Sebastian Shaw has acknowledged Cyclops's skill in taking advantage of the single flaw in the Hellfire Club's defense to reverse a dire situation for the X-Men. When the other X-Men were hypnotized into thinking Cyclops was the Dark Phoenix and started hunting him down, he thwarted Colossus, Nightcrawler, and Storm in quick succession before fleeing to the Danger Room and creating a jungle environment in which to hide from his fellow X-Men, allowing him to outwit and defeat Shadowcat, Wolverine, Colossus, Storm, and Rogue, all while suffering from broken ribs. In Uncanny X-Men #150, Cyclops organizes the X-Men to defeat Magneto at a time when the team is denied their mutant powers.
- Expert Combatant: Cyclops also has extensive training in martial arts and unarmed combat, holding black belts in judo and aikido.
During the "Riot at Xavier's" storyline, Cyclops faces off against Quentin Quire's Omega Gang and can be observed doing a cartwheel while firing his optic blast at Radian's leg. In a fight with the Horseman of Apocalypse named War, Cyclops executes an acrobatic flip off a statue in the graveyard and while inverted in mid-air fires his optic blast into the mouth of the robotic mount.
Cyclops has had multiple serious relationships and is rarely written without a romantic female relationship. Cyclops' relationships are particularly complicated because of the many retcons involved in the publication history of the Jean Grey and Madelyne Pryor characters.
In terms of publication time, Cyclops's longest and deepest romantic relationship would be with Jean Grey, whom he would eventually marry but not before she would appear to tragically die protecting the X-Men. Grieving from this loss, Scott leaves to the Summers family reunion where he meets and starts to pursue Madelyne Pryor. Scott would become obsessed with Madelyne's similarity to Jean. Madelyne turns out to be a clone of Jean and becomes a supervillain but not before Scott marries Madelyne and has a child with her. A romantic love triangle would later be created when Jean was reawakened from a coma and brought back to life by the Fantastic Four. These relationships would be resolved over the duration of Cyclops's appearance in the X-Factor series. Asked whether or not Cyclops was really in love with Madelyne, X-Factor writer Louise Simonson answered, "I think she was a substitute for Jean." Uncanny X-Men writer Chris Claremont noted that Cyclops's love for Madelyne was genuine and intended as a means of retiring the character from the team, stating, "It's a metaphor for us all. We all grow up. We all move on." Jean Grey and Scott finally marry in X-Men #30.
When Cyclops married Jean Grey, he seemed to have reached a happy ending. Subsequently, Scott becomes possessed by Apocalypse and the lingering effects from this would taint his relationship with Jean. This combined with Jean's returning Phoenix powers creates stress in their romantic relationship. Confused, Scott turns to Emma Frost, who takes advantage of Scott's emotional problems, which leads to a telepathic extramarital affair. When confronted by Jean, Scott claims that they shared "only thoughts" and that he had done nothing wrong; Jean, however, disagrees and demands that Emma explain herself, but Emma only jeers and insults her. Enraged, Jean unleashes the immeasurable Phoenix ability on Emma, rifling through her memories and forcing her to confront the truth about herself.
In the aftermath, Scott then leaves the X-Men for a time to understand his own conflicting feelings. He returns to tell Emma that he had made a decision between her and Jean, but Jean is killed in battle before it is revealed which woman he had picked. After Jean's death, Scott feels disillusioned with Xavier's dream, leaves the X-Men, and refuses Emma's offer to reopen the school. Had the school remained closed, this outcome would have led to an apocalyptic future. To avoid it, Jean, who was resurrected in this apocalyptic future, used her Phoenix abilities to absorb this future timeline into the White Hot Room. She then mentally pushed Scott past the guilt he felt over her death and made him accept Emma's offer of reopening the school with her.
The two have since been together, although not without problems, particularly in light of the "House of M" storyline in which Emma alienates herself from many people by completely reformatting the school's workings and the events involving the Hellfire Club's return. As of the Divided We Stand stories, their relationship seems to be back on track. The relationship begins to deteriorate again with Cyclops keeping secrets about the actions of X-Force, and Emma not telling him of her agreement to join Norman Osborn's secret alliance known as the Cabal. However, both had their secrets revealed to each other and their romantic relationship seems to be back on track once again, apparently stronger and closer than ever.
A wedge is driven between Scott and Emma's relationship during the war with the Avengers, with Emma and the other members of the Phoenix Five becoming more and more corrupted by the Phoenix Force while Cyclops tries to control his portion as his allies go out of control. In the end, Scott betrays Emma by attacking her and stealing her portion of the Phoenix Force. Following the end of the war with the Avengers, Scott and Emma's relationship is ended.[volume & issue needed]
The time displaced version of Cyclops was in a relationship with Jean, but she ended the relationship when discovering their future. He later began a budding relationship with X-23, prior to leaving the X-Men to join his father, leaving Jean and Laura devastated. The present-day Scott was romantically approached by the time-displaced Jean at one point but he flatly stopped her advances. The displaced Scott has confirmed that he is still in love with Jean, but is unaware of the past Jean's location.[volume & issue needed]
In other media
|Title||Material collected||Publication date||ISBN|
|X-Men Icons: Cyclops||Cyclops (vol. 1) #1–4||April 1, 2004||978-0785108719|
|Death of X||Death of X #1–4||March 14, 2017||978-1302903374|
|Title||Material collected||Publication date||ISBN|
|Cyclops, Volume 1: Starstruck||Cyclops (vol. 3) #1–5||December 30, 2014||978-0785190752|
|Cyclops, Volume 2: A Pirate's Life for Me||Cyclops (vol. 3) #6–12||July 14, 2015||978-0785190769|
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