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  1. #1
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    Default Magneto as a good guy or an antagonist?

    In Claremont's X-Men run Magneto reformed and joined the X-Men ostensibly renouncing his old views about humanity and mutantkind being unable to co-exist peacefully and that humans were at their heart bad and would inevitably try to exterminate his people if he didn't act.

    However much later on due to editorial mandates Magneto went back to being a bad guy (maybe 'bad guy' is too simplistic a term but you know what I mean, he was in the X-men's rogue's gallery again).

    What I'd like to discuss boils down to two points


    Firstly whether you liked it or not, whether you agree with it or not and regardless of the behind-the-scenes shenanigans that led to it, was Magneto's transition back into an antagonist figure for the X-Men organic and believable. As in you could read his character's history and the swing in that direction did make sense as opposed to being something like Cassie Cain's heel turn.

    Secondly from a creative point of view in terms of the big picture of the X-Men franchise was the decision to transition him back into an antagonist a justified or necessary decision? Was it more additive (or at least theoretically additive) to the series as a whole than it was reductive?

    To give my thoughts on the latter I think that in all honesty whilst Magneto as a more heroic figure was an interesting and even rewarding arc for his character that added a lot to the new Mutants and created some interesting dynamics with the individual team members it's one of those situations where you've told one interesting story at the expense of necessities of the series or genre.

    That is to say that in any superhero series (which regardless of what a certain podcast claim, the X-Men are definitely among) you need villains and good villains are gold dust. Magneto being not just the best X-Men villain by leaps and bounds but the one of the best Marvel and comic book villains period. That same moral complexity and greyness that could allow the character to believably transition into a more heroic figure is also why he was so unique and potent as a antagonist figure or as a 'villain'. You understood where he was coming from and could sympathize even fi you didn't condone and his point of view provided an inherent ideological clash between himself and the X-Men, rendering their conflicts an ideological debate played out metaphorically through optic blasts and magnetism. I mean this is why McKellen's and Fassbender's renditions are so popular right?


    I mean honestly what other truly great villains (or at least as good as magneto) did they have at the time where he transitioned back into being an antagonist? Apocalypse? Sinister? Shaw? Hardly guys who as charcters truly measure up to Mags.

    I'm not saying making him a good guy sucked or that I don't enjoy it but looking at the bigger picture...I think it was actually a justified direction to take the character and franchise in.

  2. #2
    Ultimate Member Wiccan's Avatar
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    I like where he is right now. He's more of a good guy but still a bit antagonistic to the more traditional X-Men.

  3. #3
    Astonishing Member sifighter's Avatar
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    I like him as an anti-hero/villain where he generally believes that his way of doing something is the right thing and the best for mutant kind, but he may have to do some less then noble things to achieve his goals and that puts him at odds with the X-men at times.
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  4. #4
    Mugga, please. xhx23x's Avatar
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    I like him both ways as long as he's being written well. But he is more interesting as an anti-hero than a straight up villain.

  5. #5
    Extraordinary Member Purplevit's Avatar
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    He will never be an X-Man or even a good guy for me.

    I like how Bunn is writing him but his team is not X-Men.

  6. #6
    Astonishing Member Kusanagi's Avatar
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    To use a couple wrestling terms he's a tweener, that role between face and heel. He works he does good for the wrong reasons/wrong methods, and does evil for the right reasons.

    I'll never look at him as the leader of the X-men though, nor will I look at any team that follows him as X-Men.
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  7. #7
    Extraordinary Member JudicatorPrime's Avatar
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    I've always preferred Magneto as humanity's antagonist, as opposed to merely being Xavier's foil. While I don't mind a run or two where Xavier's dream and Magneto's goals intersect, if I had any say at all, Magneto and his band of badass mutants would be making it their business to take out anyone and everyone that hated mutants, including the Red Skull, the Inhumans, the Trasks, etc. And if the X-Men want to get in the way of that, it's their funeral.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spidercide View Post
    In Claremont's X-Men run Magneto reformed and joined the X-Men ostensibly renouncing his old views about humanity and mutantkind being unable to co-exist peacefully and that humans were at their heart bad and would inevitably try to exterminate his people if he didn't act.

    However much later on due to editorial mandates Magneto went back to being a bad guy (maybe 'bad guy' is too simplistic a term but you know what I mean, he was in the X-men's rogue's gallery again).

    What I'd like to discuss boils down to two points


    Firstly whether you liked it or not, whether you agree with it or not and regardless of the behind-the-scenes shenanigans that led to it, was Magneto's transition back into an antagonist figure for the X-Men organic and believable. As in you could read his character's history and the swing in that direction did make sense as opposed to being something like Cassie Cain's heel turn.

    Secondly from a creative point of view in terms of the big picture of the X-Men franchise was the decision to transition him back into an antagonist a justified or necessary decision? Was it more additive (or at least theoretically additive) to the series as a whole than it was reductive?

    To give my thoughts on the latter I think that in all honesty whilst Magneto as a more heroic figure was an interesting and even rewarding arc for his character that added a lot to the new Mutants and created some interesting dynamics with the individual team members it's one of those situations where you've told one interesting story at the expense of necessities of the series or genre.

    That is to say that in any superhero series (which regardless of what a certain podcast claim, the X-Men are definitely among) you need villains and good villains are gold dust. Magneto being not just the best X-Men villain by leaps and bounds but the one of the best Marvel and comic book villains period. That same moral complexity and greyness that could allow the character to believably transition into a more heroic figure is also why he was so unique and potent as a antagonist figure or as a 'villain'. You understood where he was coming from and could sympathize even fi you didn't condone and his point of view provided an inherent ideological clash between himself and the X-Men, rendering their conflicts an ideological debate played out metaphorically through optic blasts and magnetism. I mean this is why McKellen's and Fassbender's renditions are so popular right?


    I mean honestly what other truly great villains (or at least as good as magneto) did they have at the time where he transitioned back into being an antagonist? Apocalypse? Sinister? Shaw? Hardly guys who as charcters truly measure up to Mags.

    I'm not saying making him a good guy sucked or that I don't enjoy it but looking at the bigger picture...I think it was actually a justified direction to take the character and franchise in.
    He can never really be a LEGIT bad guy again. He saved Rogue from CERTAIN DEATH in Uncanny 269, 274, and X Men #1-2.

  9. #9
    Twitter: @theprattlp donpricetag's Avatar
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    I prefer him to be somewhere in the middle. Not down to kill without reason, or unnecessarily sacrifice innocents (because that would make him no better than a Nazi) but will go through whoever he has to, to achieve his goals or what push forward what he truly believes to be for the greater good. Now this kind of mettle will undoubtedly put him at odds with anyone, hero, villain- whatever. What matters to me is we have a Magneto that's smart, charismatic, insightful, inspiring and very stubborn. Let him be Magneto and let the chips fall where they might in terms of his place on the spectrum of "right and wrong". Some times he should be seen as threat and other times a blessing in disguise.
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  10. #10
    MXAAGVNIEETRO IS RIGHT MyriVerse's Avatar
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    Antagonist? Absolutely. Even when I agree with him the most I wouldn't consider him a good guy.
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  11. #11
    Fantastic Member rdman's Avatar
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    A lot better than some paper cutter bad guy.

  12. #12
    Dazed and Confused Neko's Avatar
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    I like Magneto having his own agenda. Whether the Xmen agree with him or not. I think some of his strength comes from his convictions. To me he isn't a villain so much as a guy who strongly believes in his ideals.
    Last edited by Neko; 09-27-2016 at 07:23 AM.
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  13. #13
    Extraordinary Member Bl00dwerK's Avatar
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    I like him better as a villian, I guess.

  14. #14
    Incredible Member Majesty's Avatar
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    Magneto is in the same spot that Mystique is in.

    He is whatever he needs to be, whenever he or the story needs it.

    And I'm fine with that.

  15. #15
    Formerly Assassin Spider Huntsman Spider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Majesty View Post
    Magneto is in the same spot that Mystique is in.

    He is whatever he needs to be, whenever he or the story needs it.

    And I'm fine with that.
    Except Magneto is usually written more consistently as someone who will go over dead bodies, literally, to defend mutants and their right to exist and be safe from harm and has no time for niceties like "peaceful coexistence" with people who largely either want mutants eliminated or wouldn't care if they were. Mystique, meanwhile, gets written more as someone whose entire focus and drive in life is screwing with/over the X-Men, regardless of what it does to her plans or goals in the long-term, and whom everyone stupidly is willing to ally with even if they acknowledge on the page that she can't be trusted.
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