Magneto on the cover of X-Men (vol. 2) #1.
Pencils by Jim Lee and inks by Scott Williams.
|First appearance||X-Men Vol. 1, #1 (September, 1963)|
|Created by||Stan Lee
|Alter ego||Max Eisenhardt |
|Team affiliations||Brotherhood of Mutants
Savage Land Mutates
|Notable aliases||Magnus, Erik Lehnsherr, White King (later Grey King) of the Hellfire Club, Michael Xavier, Erik the Red, White Pilgrim, The Creator|
Magneto (born Max Eisenhardt, also known as Magnus and Erik Lehnsherr) is a fictional character that appears in comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character first appears in X-Men #1 (Sept. 1963), and was created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby. A powerful mutant with the ability to generate and control magnetism, Magneto has been the X-Men's most prominent enemy ever since his first appearance. In his early appearances, his motives were bent on megalomania, but writers have since fleshed out his character and origin, revealing him to be a Jewish Holocaust survivor whose actions are driven by the purpose of protecting the mutant race from suffering a similar fate. His role in comics have varied from supervillain to anti-hero to even hero.
Sir Ian McKellen portrayed Magneto throughout the entire X-Men film series. He was ranked number 1 by IGN's Top 100 Comic Book Villains list, was listed number 17 in Wizard's Top 100 Greatest Villains Ever list, and was ranked as the 9th Greatest Comic Book Character Ever in Wizard's list of the 200 Greatest Comic Book Characters of All Time, the second highest villain on that list.
Magneto first appeared in the debut issue of X-Men in 1963, along with the titular team. Through the decades from the 1960s, Magneto has appeared in several issues of the original X-Men series, generally known as Uncanny X-Men, as well as in such spin-offs as X-Men, Astonishing X-Men, Alpha Flight, Cable, Excalibur, and The New Mutants; many X-Men miniseries, and several other Marvel titles. His first solo title was a one-shot special, Magneto: The Twisting of a Soul #0 (Sept. 1993), published when the character returned from a brief absence; it reprinted Magneto-based stories from Classic X-Men #12 & 19 (Aug. 1987 & March 1988), by writer Chris Claremont and artist John Bolton.
In a 2008 interview, Stan Lee elaborated that he "did not think of Magneto as a bad guy. He just wanted to strike back at the people who were so bigoted and racist... he was trying to defend the mutants, and because society was not treating them fairly he was going to teach society a lesson. He was a danger of course... but I never thought of him as a villain." In the same interview, he also revealed that he originally planned Magneto to be the brother of his archnemesis Professor X.
Magneto's first original title was the four-issue miniseries Magneto (Nov. 1996 - Feb. 1997), by writers Peter Milligan & Jorge Gonzalez, and penciller Kelley Jones. The miniseries took place during a period where it was believed Magneto had been de-aged and was suffering from amnesia, calling himself Joseph; it was later revealed that Joseph was a younger clone of Magneto. Later, Magneto became ruler of the nation Genosha. During this period, he received two miniseries; Magneto Rex (written by Joe Pruett and drawn by Brandon Peterson) and Magneto: Dark Seduction (written by Fabian Nicieza and drawn by Roger Cruz). A trade paperback novel detailing Magneto's childhood, titled X-Men: Magneto Testament, was released in September 2008, and written by Greg Pak. Magneto Testament, which Pak based on accounts from Holocaust survivors, watched documentaries, and read comics such as Maus, finally confirms and clarifies into the Marvel Comics canon, Magneto's personal history and background. Before the publication of X-Men: Magneto Testament, Magneto's personal background and history was  established in Uncanny X-Men vol. 1, #150 (August 1981) as him being a Jewish Holocaust survivor, while he was searching for his wife Magda, a Sinti Gypsy, Magneto maintained a cover identity as a Sinti Gypsy. This created confusion amongst some readers, as to his heritage, until it was authoritatively confirmed in Magneto: New Testament that he is, in fact, Jewish.
Magneto was born Max Eisenhardt sometime in the late 1920s to a middle class German Jewish family whose father, Jakob Eisenhardt was a highly decorated World War I veteran. Surviving discrimination and hardship during the Nazi rise to power, Kristallnacht, and the passing of the Nuremberg Laws, in 1939 Max and his family fled to Poland where they were captured during the German invasion of Poland and sent to the Warsaw Ghetto. Max and his family escape the Ghetto, only to be betrayed and captured again. His Mother, Father, and Sister were executed and buried in a mass grave, but Max survived possibly due to the manifestation of his powers. Escaping from the mass grave, he is ultimately captured yet again  and sent to Auschwitz, where he eventually becomes a Sonderkommando. While at Auschwitz, Eisenhardt reunites with a Roma girl named Magda, with whom he had fallen in love when he was younger, and with whom he escapes the prison camp during the October 7th 1944 revolt. Following the war, he and Magda move to the Ukrainian city of Vinnytsia, and adopts the name "Magnus". Magda and Magnus have a daughter named Anya, and live uneventfully until one night when an angry mob burned their home down with Anya still inside. Enraged at the mob preventing him from rescuing Anya, the young Magneto's powers manifest uncontrollably, killing the mob and destroying a part of the city. Magda, terrified at Magneto's power, leaves him and later dies giving birth to the mutant twins Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch. Wanted by the authorities for the deaths and destruction in Vinnytsia, while searching for Magda, Magnus paid a Romanian forger George Odekirk, to create the cover identity of "Erik Lehnsherr the Sinte gypsy" for him.
"Erik", relocated to Israel, where he met and befriended Charles Xavier while working at a psychiatric hospital near Haifa. There, lengthy debates are held by the two regarding the consequences humanity faces with the rise of mutants, though neither reveals to the other that they both in fact possessed mutant powers. However, they are forced to reveal their inherent abilities to one another, while facing Baron Von Strucker and HYDRA. Following the battle, Erik (now dressed as Magneto) leaves, realizing that his and Xavier's views are incompatible, with a cache of hidden Nazi gold, which provided him with the financing to launch his goals.
Magneto's experiences surviving Nazi Germany, Auschwitz, and Vinnytsia would shape his outlook on the situation that mutants face in the Marvel Universe. Determined to keep such atrocities from ever being committed against mutant-kind, he is willing to use deadly force to protect mutants. He would believe that mutants ("Homo superior") will become the dominant life form on the planet and would set about either creating a homeland on Earth where mutants could live peacefully, or conquering and enslaving humanity in the name of mutantkind.
Magneto's first villainous act was attacking a United States military base called Cape Citadel. He was defeated by Charles Xavier's mutant students, the X-Men. He creates Asteroid M, an orbital base of operations in an hollowed out asteroid that he wanted it to be a homeland for all mutant kind. He then gathers a group of angry and disenfranchised mutants, including, his own, albeit at the time unbeknown to him, son and daughter Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch and forms the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants to further his goals. Magneto briefly conquers the fictional South American nation of San Marco in the hopes of establishing a mutant homeland there, but is once again foiled by the X-Men.
Constant defeat of him and the Brotherhood by the X-Men led to him to get ultimately captured by the Stranger. A powerful alien being, the Stranger encases Magneto in a special cocoon and spirits him away to another planet, the Stranger's laboratory world. While back on Earth, Magneto's Brotherhood splinters, and Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch desert him. Magneto escaped to Earth and battled the X-Men, but was then recaptured by the Stranger. Magneto remains on the Stranger's world for a long time. Magneto eventually escapes again, makes his way back to Earth, and re-assembles the Brotherhood of Evil mutants with the exception of the mutant Mastermind. He then captures the X-Men, but with the help of the Avengers and a rebellious member of the Brotherhood, Toad, Magneto is defeated again.
Magneto then created the Savage Land Mutates. With the Savage Land Mutates, he clashed with the X-Men and Ka-Zar. With Namor, Magneto later attacked New York City. He later fought the Inhumans Royal Family. He later battled the Avengers once more.
Magneto later reorganized the Brotherhood, and fought Professor X and the Defenders. Using ancient and advanced alien technology he finds near the core of the earth, Magneto creates an artificial humanoid he names "Alpha the Ultimate Mutant." Alpha rebels against his creator and reduces Magneto to infancy. Magneto is then placed in the care of Xavier's former love interest, Professor Moira MacTaggert at Muir Island. At Muir Island, MacTaggert manipulates the infant Magneto's genetic code in an attempt to prevent him from becoming "evil" in adulthood. However, her genetic tampering loses its effect when Magneto re-activates his powers again. Magneto is eventually restored to adulthood when he is found at Muir Island by the alien Shi'ar agent Erik the Red.
Magneto later discovers that former Brotherhood members the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver are actually his children, simultaneously learning about their recent marriages to the Vision and Crystal. He revealed to Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch that he is their father. He also discovers his granddaughter, Quicksilver's human child Luna Maximoff. Seeing Luna as a bond to the human race he has rejected, Magneto tries to reach out to his children. Angered by his rejection of them and their mother, they push him away and refuse to forgive him.
Magneto finds himself allied with Professor Xavier and the X-Men when a group of heroes and villains are abducted by the Beyonder, a nearly omnipotent alien being. This entity takes them to a planet he creates called the Battleworld to participate in a personal experiment of his to observe the concept of the battle between good and evil which would be later known as the Secret Wars. The characters are sorted according to their desires, as Magneto was placed with the heroes as his desires were based on a wish to help mutants rather than the more selfish drives of the others. This surprises many of the other heroes, who still believe he is a villain, although they mostly come to accept him as an ally. Captain America even spoke in his defense on some occasions, and the Wasp develops a certain affection for him, although it is tempered by her knowledge of his past.
After the Secret Wars are over, Magneto is transported back to his base, Asteroid M, where the alien Warlock, traveling to Earth, collides into the asteroid, breaking it to pieces. Magneto is sent falling towards Earth and into the Atlantic Ocean, sustaining serious injuries. He is rescued by Lee Forrester, the captain of a fishing trawler. Lee helps him recuperate from his injuries and the two share a small romance.
After recuperating from his injuries, Magneto is asked to aid the X-Men in battling the returned Beyonder, and Magneto stays with the X-Men even after the Beyonder is defeated. His association with the team softens his views on humanity and Magneto surrenders himself to the law to stand trial for his crimes. A special tribunal is organized. They choose to strike all charges against Magneto from prior to his "rebirth," deeming that this had constituted a figurative death of the old Magneto. However, the tribunal is interrupted by an attack from Fenris, the twin children of Baron Wolfgang von Strucker. Fenris is defeated but Professor X is brought to near-death due to the strain of the battle and previously sustained injuries. Xavier asks Magneto to take over his school and the X-Men, and tells him that doing so would make amends enough for his past crimes. Magneto agrees and chooses not to return to the courtroom. Instead he takes over Xavier's school under the assumed identity of Michael Xavier, Charles Xavier's cousin. Seeing him try to reform, the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver begin accepting him as their father.
Though Magneto makes a substantial effort as the headmaster to the New Mutants and an ally to the X-Men, his tenure is disastrous. The Beyonder plagues him yet again, slaying Xavier's current students, the New Mutants, and bringing them back to life soon later. This deeply traumatizes the entire group. He is manipulated by Emma Frost, headmistress of her own school, the Massachusetts Academy, and White Queen of the Hellfire Club, into battling sanctioned heroes the Avengers and the Supreme Soviets. Magneto submits to a trial once again, but uses mind-control circuitry he salvages from the wreckage of Asteroid M to alter the opinions of the head justice in charge of the trial. As a result, he is finally absolved of his past crimes but finds that this has only fueled the hostility that normal humans have towards mutants. Feeling that desperate measures needed to be taken after the genocidal massacre in the Morlock tunnels, Magneto and Storm join the Hellfire Club jointly as the White King. He is unable to prevent his students Roberto da Costa and the alien Technarch Warlock from running away from the school, or prevent the death of the young mutant student Douglas Ramsey after the students sneak away yet again to save a friend, and witnesses the apparent death of all of the senior X-Men on national television.
His relationship with the New Mutants deteriorates even further when they see him and the Club work with the demons of the Inferno incident. Magneto later ousts longtime Hellfire Club co-chair Sebastian Shaw in order to establish himself as the head of the Hellfire Club as the Grey King. During this confrontation he reveals his real purpose of raising an army for the coming war between humans and mutants. The New Mutants do not return to Magneto's tutelage.
Seeing conditions for mutants grow progressively more perilous, Magneto began seeking allies to protect mutants from humanity. He participates in the "Acts of Vengeance" alongside such established villains as Doctor Doom, the Wizard, the Mandarin, and the Red Skull. His temporary alliance with the Red Skull — an unrepentant Nazi war criminal — is a highly uneasy one. After confirming that the Skull was the original one who had worked with Hitler, Magneto takes revenge upon him by entombing him alive. He also attacks (and is defeated by) a cosmically powered Spider-Man. He works alongside Rogue, Ka-zar and the American intelligence agent Nick Fury as well as a number of Russian operatives in order to re-establish peace in the Savage Land. This ultimately led to an altercation with Zaladane, who had appropriated the magnetic powers of his then-unknown daughter, Polaris. The conflict ended with Magneto executing Zaladane himself. With her death, he renounced his previous efforts to act as a mentor to the New Mutants and to follow Xavier's beliefs in peaceful co-existence between mutants and normal humans.
Tired of the constant state of strife, Magneto set his sights significantly lower than world conquest. Instead, Magneto built a second orbital base called Avalon where he hoped to live a life of quiet seclusion. He is, by this point, a figurehead for the cause of mutantkind and is sought out by a group of new mutants calling themselves the Acolytes who pledge their service and allegiance to him. Under the influence of one of them, Fabian Cortez, he announces that the orbital base known as Asteroid M will be a new homeland for mutantkind, obtains nuclear missiles from an sunken Soviet Sub he had previously destroyed and places them around the Asteroid pointed towards Earth.
Magneto would discover how Moira MacTaggert had altered his genetic structure when he had been de-aged. Enraged as he feels that his redemption has been a lie, he kidnaps Moira and subjects her to torture. Though it was later revealed that the genetic tampering had lost its effect when he had first used his powers after being re-aged, and thus his actions had never been influenced by Moira's tampering, the damage was done. While the X-Men attack Avalon to rescue Moira and stop Magneto's plans, humanity, the Soviets launch a particle beam satellite which destroys Asteroid M. Betrayed and abandoned at the last minute by Cortez, Magneto refuses Xavier's pleas to escape with the X-Men back to Earth and he and his followers "perish" in the subsequent explosion. It would later be revealed that Magneto survived the crash, as the Acolyte Chrome had encased him in a protective shell. However, Chrome and the other Acolytes died.
The United Nations Security Council, in response to a resurgent Magneto, votes to activate the "Magneto Protocols" — a satellite network, in slightly lower orbit than Avalon, which skews the Earth's magnetic field enough to prevent Magneto from using his powers within, preventing him from returning to the planet's surface. In response, Magneto generates an electromagnetic pulse not only destroying the satellites, but deactivating every electric device on Earth within minutes. The X-Men respond by hacking into Avalon's own computer systems to teleport a small team to the station with the aid of Colossus (who had joined Magneto as one of Magneto's Acolytes). Magneto, during the battle with the X-Men, rips the adamantium from Wolverine's bones, which enrages Xavier to the point that he blanks his former friend's mind, leaving him in a coma. This action later leads to the creation of Onslaught an omnipotent being that was formed with the combination of both Xavier's and Magneto's powers. Magneto remained comatose on Avalon worshiped by his Acolytes, under the leadership of the ancient mutant Exodus, until Avalon itself is destroyed by the arrival of Holocaust from the Age of Apocalypse Earth. During the destruction, Colossus places Magneto in an escape pod sending him back to Earth. This pod is intercepted by Astra, a former ally who now desires his death.
After cloning Magneto, Astra restored Magneto's memories and powers before attempting to kill him. Instead, Magneto, now fully revived, battles both Astra and his clone. After a pitched battle, Magneto triumphs over the clone sending him crashing into a South American barn. However, too weak to continue the battle, the real Magneto goes into hiding while the now-amnesiac clone becomes known as Joseph (christened as such by the nun who discovered him) and eventually joins the X-Men. Since the world believes Joseph to be the real Magneto, Magneto takes his time to plan. He engages in a pair of brief diversions, first posing as "Erik the Red" and revealing Gambit's past crimes to the X-Men, resulting in Gambit's expulsion from the group. Then he kills George Odekirk, the forger that created his "Erik Lensherr" alias to prevent his true identity from being discovered by Sabra and Gabrielle Haller.
Following this, Magneto constructs a machine to amplify his powers and blackmail the world into creating a mutant nation. The X-Men and Joseph, who has fallen under Astra's control again, oppose him. The X-Men defeat Magneto, leaving his powers severely depleted from over-strain, while Joseph sacrifices his life to restore the Earth to normal. The United Nations, manipulated by its mutant affairs officer Alda Huxley, cedes to Magneto the island nation of Genosha, which has no recognized government. Magneto rules that nation for some time with the aid of many who had previously opposed him, including Quicksilver, Polaris, and the founder of the Acolytes, Fabian Cortez, and engages in a brutal civil war with the island's former human rulers.
Despite the UN's hopes that Genosha's civil war between humans and mutants would destroy or at least occupy him, Magneto ultimately crushes all opposition to his rule and rebuilds the nation by forming an army of mutants dedicated to his cause, including mutants coming from all over the world seeking sanctuary. Eventually, Magneto is able to use the Genegineer's equipment to fully restore his power. Intending to declare war on humanity, he captures Professor X to use as a symbol with which to rally his troops. In the Eve of Destruction storyline, Jean Grey recruits a new groupof X-Men to help Cyclops and Wolverine rescue Xavier and defeat Magneto. Taking the opportunity for revenge, Wolverine attacks the defeated Magneto, crippling him with serious injuries.
Following those events, Genosha is destroyed by Sentinels under the orders of Cassandra Nova Xavier, Charles Xavier's previously unknown dead twin sister. Magneto and 16 million mutants who were gathered at Genosha are reported deceased. Months after the event, a team of X-Men searching in the debris apparently finds a recording of Magneto's last words. Mutant-supremacist ideas, attributed to him, become widespread in the mutant community with some holding him as a martyr of the mutant cause. Magneto became a Che Guevara-like revolutionary figure in the mutant community. T-shirts and posters with Magneto's face and the phrase "Magneto Was Right" became popular items.
During this time, the mutant known as Xorn joins the X-Men. Later in the Planet X storyline, Xorn revealed himself to have Magneto's face beneath. It is alleged that Xorn never existed and is simply an identity conceived wholly by Magneto. Having "exposed his deception", he then schemes to destroy the X-Men and reverse the polarity of the Earth's magnetic field, increasing his power with the use of a mutant drug called "Kick". He recruits the Special Class and Esme from the Xavier School to serve as his Brotherhood of Mutants, though most eventually turn against him. Before being decapitated by Wolverine, "Magneto" devastates much of New York City and kills Jean Grey using a lethal electromagnetic pulse, causing her to have a massive stroke.
Some time later, the X-Men find another Xorn, who identifies himself as Shen Xorn and claims that the "Magneto" who devastated New York was Kuan-Yin Xorn, his brother. The reasons behind this act remain unexplained in the comics, although Marvel editor-in-chief Joe Quesada later elaborated on this, stating that "Kuan-Yin Xorn came under the influence of as-yet-to-be-revealed entity that forced him to assume the identity of Magneto." This retcon has never been mentioned in the comics, but remains the only official explanation of the Xorn character and its relationship to Magneto.
Following the events in New York, Xavier meets the real Magneto in Genosha, who apparently survived Cassandra Nova's attack and lived unnoticed within the ruins. Xavier brings with him the coffin supposedly containing the corpse of Xorn (but which is later shown to be filled with guns), and explains how the impostor has killed over 5,000 people including Jean Grey. Magneto is shocked and angry that people think he is capable of committing such an act. Xavier and Magneto put aside their differences to rebuild the island nation, rekindling their friendship in the process.
Magneto's daughter Wanda suffers a mental breakdown over the loss of her children and starts to warp reality in order to recreate them, inadvertently resulting in random attacks on the Avengers, until Doctor Strange puts her into a coma to stop her. In Genosha, Magneto hears Wanda's psychic cry for help and, creating a wormhole, whisks her away before the Avengers were able to stop her. Back in Genosha, Magneto tends to Wanda increasingly becoming more withdrawn and angry. He allows only Xavier to visit, in the belief that Xavier can help Wanda. Xavier is angry to learn that Magneto has revealed to the world that he was alive by rescuing Wanda, but agrees to try and help. Months pass with no avail, and not even Doctor Strange's magic helps. The X-Men and the Avengers meet to decide what should be done, and when some of the members suggest killing Wanda, Quicksilver informs him of this development, as Quicksilver convinces Wanda to warp reality into the House of M. In the new reality, where the New Avengers, the X-Men and the members of Wanda's family all received their 'heart's desires', Magneto is attacked by Sentinels over Manhattan in 1979, and reveals an alleged international anti-mutant conspiracy involving Richard Nixon. This results in Magneto being granted sovereignty over Genosha as leader of the world's much larger and much faster growing mutant population. Magneto then turns Genosha into the most powerful, technologically advanced country on Earth to which he uses as a base to dominate the world and place mutantkind above humanity.
A group of heroes are brought together by Wolverine — who alone remembers the way the world is supposed to be because his 'heart's desire' was to regain all the memories stolen from him by the Weapon X Program — and have their own memories of the "real world" restored by Layla Miller. They band together and attack Magneto in Genosha, believing him to be the one responsible. During the battle Layla is able to restore Magneto's memories as well, and he confronts his son, enraged that Quicksilver had done all of this in his name. Quicksilver reveals that Magneto would have let Wanda die, but Magneto replies that Quicksilver was only using Wanda and himself, and he would never have allowed this to happen. Furious, Magneto kills Quicksilver. Sensing her brother's death, Wanda retaliates with the phrase "No more mutants," Wanda changes the world back to its original form and causes ninety-eight percent of the mutant population to lose their powers including Magneto who is left a broken man.
When Quicksilver comes to Genosha to restore the mutants' powers with the Inhumans' Terrigen Mists, Magneto condemns his actions, pointing out the disastrous effects the Mists have on non-Inhumans. An angry Quicksilver attacks Magneto with his new powers from the Mists, savagely beating him until his own daughter Luna stops him.
The Collective, a being composed of energy from all the former mutants' powers, merges with an energy absorbing mutant named Michael Pointer. The Collective kills all of the most recent incarnation of Alpha Flight save for Sasquatch, and battles the New Avengers before landing in Genosha. There it re-powers Magneto and reveals itself as Xorn. Xorn explains that he took the image of Magneto because he knew mutants would follow him, and that they needed the real Magneto again. Magneto, not in control of himself, begins attacking the New Avengers and S.H.I.E.L.D. agents while he pleads for them to kill him. He is taken down with a direct brain attack from mutant S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Daisy Johnson. Iron Man, Ms. Marvel, and the Sentry combine their powers and send the Collective/Xorn into the Sun. Michael is separated from the Collective and an unconscious Magneto is loaded into a S.H.I.E.L.D. helicopter. The helicopter, however, explodes upon take-off through unknown means; his body was not found among the rubble.
Magneto appeared at the end of X-Men: Legacy #208, apparently at the behest of Exodus and claiming to be powerless, to help restore the broken psyche of Professor Xavier. Together they manage to revive Xavier before being attacked by Frenzy. Magneto wounds Frenzy by firing a medical laser into one of her eyes, prompting Exodus to ask what punishment he would have instilled on a human who injured a mutant (as the Acolytes consider him a human, Exodus even claims that Magneto is dead and that Lehnsherr is just a shell that was left over). Magneto replies "Death" and Exodus proceeds to choke him with his telekinesis before Xavier challenges Exodus on the astral plane. After Xavier defeats Exodus, he leaves Magneto and Omega Sentinel to try and rebuild his lost memories.
Magneto appears, seemingly repowered, re-activating Sentinels to attack the X-Men just as they had recently relocated to San Francisco. After the X-Men defeated him, it is soon revealed that the return of his powers are actually artificially recreated by a suit designed by the High Evolutionary, and that his attack itself was a distraction, so the High Evolutionary could gain an unknown object from the Dreaming Celestial, in order to further a shared goal between Magneto and the High Evolutionary. After extensively examining the Dreaming Celestial, the High Evolutionary subjected Magneto to an extremely dangerous technological procedure in an attempt restore his powers, which had apparently succeeded as his powers had been restored to its pre-M-Day condition. Re-energized, he referred to himself as Magneto rather than his former alias of Erik Lehnsherr and Magnus.
Magneto appeared on Utopia, the new mutant homeland created by the X-Men using the remnants of his old Asteroid M. Magneto stuns the X-Men by offering to work with them as he was rather impressed with their recent efforts in defending and helping mutantkind. Magneto feared the end of mutantkind until Cyclops informed him that Hope Summers, the Mutant Messiah is alive and well. He puts this offer in action as he assisted the X-Men in defending Utopia Island from an attack of Predator X monsters. After helping the X-Men defeat the Predators, Magneto, now considered a member of the X-Men, assisted in helping the rest of the X-Men in stabilizing the asteroid from sinking into the Pacific. To that end, he worked with Namor and the Atlanteans by constructing a pillar supporting Utopia on the surface while providing a home for the Atlanteans, which Magneto would later refer to as New Atlantis. However, Magneto's actions had angered Cyclops who reprimanded Magneto for acting on his own accord. Despite Xavier being apologetic and appreciative for what he's done, Magneto leaves Utopia for nearby Mount Tamalpais in Marin County and begins meditating on a cliff overlooking the ocean, promising himself that he will finally do something good with his life. It is revealed that he is drawing the giant planet-killer bullet, that Shadowcat is trapped in, back to Earth.
Magneto is a mutant with the power to generate and control magnetic fields, enabling him to achieve a wide range of effects.
His primary use of this power is the manipulation of ferrous metals. He is able to manipulate a very large quantity of metal at one time. He has levitated objects as heavy as a 30,000 ton nuclear submarine and has on more than one occasion used his power to move asteroids; the maximum amount of mass that he can manipulate at one time is unknown. He is able to manipulate a large number of individual metal objects simultaneously, and even to assemble complex machines using only his powers. Magneto can also manipulate paramagnetic and diamagnetic materials to some extent.
Another way in which he frequently uses his power is for the production of a personal shield or 'force field' which selectively blocks out matter and energy. Magneto's personal shield is strong enough to protect him even from the detonation of a thermonuclear weapon; hence he is invulnerable to most harm when his personal shield is active. He can also survive in deep space when his personal shield is active, presumably using his powers to retain some amount of air around his body by which to breathe.
Magneto frequently employs his powers to levitate his own body and fly; his personal shield is usually active whenever he is levitating himself.
Because electricity and magnetism are both aspects of the electromagnetic force, it is possible for Magneto to generate electrical currents (via electromagnetic induction) and to produce electromagnetic radiation of various frequencies. He can also generate an electromagnetic pulse of great strength.
Although Magneto has been shown capable of manipulating matter on a subatomic level (insofar as the electromagnetic force is responsible for bonding electrons to protons within an atom), the use of his powers in this way seems to be difficult for him, and he has not been frequently depicted as doing so.
In a handful of stories he has demonstrated the capacity to produce a wormhole and to safely teleport himself and others by use of the wormhole. It is not clear how his magnetic powers are used to achieve such a feat; in any case, the production of a wormhole must be extremely difficult for him, as he has only done so a few times.
Magneto has been consistently and frequently depicted as able to resist all but the strongest or most unexpected of telepathic attacks. A number of explanations have been proposed for his unusually strong resistance to telepathy, among them: (a) technology wired into his helmet (the explanation given in the X-Men film series), (b) some physical aspect of his electromagnetic powers that can interfere with telepathy (he once used the Earth's magnetic field to dampen the powers of all telepaths within his reach), (c) sheer willpower (cf. X-Men Vol. 2 #2), or (d) latent telepathic powers of his own. The theme of latent telepathic powers has been explored in a number of stories, among them the Secret Wars limited series. In some of his earliest appearances, Magneto was depicted as capable of engaging in astral projection. He has also, on rare occasions, been shown reading other's dreams, issuing telepathic commands, and probing the minds of others..
In addition to his powers, Magneto is also a genius with competence in various fields of advanced science, especially in genetic manipulation, physics, engineering, and other fields of technology. He has engineered advanced weaponry, space stations, humanoid lifeforms, devices that generate volcanoes and earthquakes, devices that block telepathy, and devices that can nullify all mutant powers except for his own. He has reconstructed computerized devices from memory. Magneto is also a master strategist with extensive combat experience, and has often been successful in single-handed combat against entire groups of superhuman adversaries. While Magneto has some knowledge of hand-to-hand combat and will engage an enemy this way if necessary, he is not an expert and prefers to use his powers in combat situations.