Total Nerd 20 Ways the X-Men Universe Has Gotten Much Weirder in the Past Five Years  

Stephan Roget
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When Stan Lee wanted to create a group of heroes so weird they’d represent the very fringes of society, he came up with the X-Men, a team of mutants sworn to protect a world that hates and fears them. Weirdness has pretty much defined X-Men storylines ever since, what with the cosmic possessions, time-travelling clones, psychic twins, and other such “life events.”

Superheroes are, by their very nature, a weird bunch. Flying around in capes, sticking to walls, and turning invisible are not the normal day-to-day activities of the average person. There’s always been an element of escapism when it comes to superhero comics; societal outsiders use the spandex-clad heroes and their adventures to disappear from their own lives into a fantasy-filled, allegorical world.

Since the X-Men tend to stand in for real-life oppressed groups, like minorities or those who identify as LGBTQ, the writers of their adventures feel a need to constantly throw devastating twists and tragedies at them. After all, you can’t have a team of oppressed mutants without oppression. The last few years of X-Men publishing has been no different, with numerous events that have pushed the weirdness factor to all new, all different heights. There have been a lot of strange X-Men events, from the shocking death of Professor X to Wolverine heading up Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters. Honestly, did you ever think you'd see Wolverine teaching children? Read on to find out how these weird X-Men plots played out.

The Schism


The Schism is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 20 Ways the X-Men Universe Has Gotten Much Weirder in the Past Five Years
Photo:  Marvel Comics

All the weirdness that has plagued the X-Men for the past five years can be traced to the self-descriptive Schism of 2011. In the series, Wolverine and Cyclops came to blows over a disagreement regarding the deployment of young students in the war for mutant rights. Cyclops was in favor of training and using the youngsters in battle, while Wolverine wanted to protect the youth and focus on schooling them. This all came to a head when Cyclops ordered a young girl to commit murder to save civilians, and it led to a complete split of the X-Men into two major factions.

Wolverine: Headmaster


Wolverine: Headmaster is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 20 Ways the X-Men Universe Has Gotten Much Weirder in the Past Five Years
Photo:  Marvel Comics

In a sharp role reversal from his usual loner status, Wolverine emerged from Schism as the Headmaster of the new School for Gifted Youngsters, which he eventually named after Jean Grey. Running a school - and teaching a few classes himself - wasn’t a natural fit for the gruff Canadian, but he eventually found his way and provided valuable guidance and protection to a new generation of mutants. While he was Headmaster during the day, Wolverine was running black ops missions on the side to ensure his students’ safety.

Goldballs


Goldballs is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 20 Ways the X-Men Universe Has Gotten Much Weirder in the Past Five Years
Photo:  Marvel Comics

Very few new mutants have emerged in recent years, due to a variety of factors, but Cyclops gathered a new team of his own after his split with Wolverine. Few of these young newbies were memorable, with one very notable exception. Fabio Medina, who debuted in 2012, has to power to shoot gold balls in every direction from seemingly nowhere. He was thus dubbed "Goldballs."  Fabio wasn’t a natural hero, but his power was surprisingly useful and he proved himself braver than he looked. The awkwardly named, portly hero would later go on to room with Miles Morales at a private school.

Wolverine Had to Kill His Own Son


Wolverine Had to Kill His Own ... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 20 Ways the X-Men Universe Has Gotten Much Weirder in the Past Five Years
Photo:  Marvel Comics

Although Wolverine became the headmaster of a school in 2012, that doesn’t mean he entirely gave up his murderous side ventures that gave him his reputation in the first place. Wolverine formed a new X-Force team, which specifically sought to end threats to mutantkind before they became a problem. Eventually, one of those problems proved to be Wolverine’s own son, Daken, who had long since become estranged from his father. Facing no other options, Logan was forced to drown Daken in a shallow, muddy puddle, yet another brutal tragedy in the long life of Wolverine.