The X-Men have tackled some pretty heavy subject matter over the years, from prejudice to religious strife and more. As serious as X-Men comic book story arcs get sometimes, there have also been a number of weird stories that include the team fighting vampires and leprechauns.
Since the second iteration of the team launched in the mid-’70s, the X-Men are generally considered to be on the more serious side of comic book storytelling. But some of the weirdest Marvel comic books hail from this period and after, as the X-Men blazed a trail into all kinds of different stories.
10 X-Men Vs. Leprechauns
The early X-Men comics of the Chris Claremont and Dave Cockrum era were often in flux, which led to stories like the X-Men fighting leprechauns in an Irish castle.
This unlikely tale takes place in X-Men #103 when the team travels to Ireland to visit Banshee’s ancestral castle. Things go upside down from there, with the leprechauns capturing Nightcrawler, revealing Wolverine’s true name of Logan for the first time ever, and eventually siding with the X-Men against Black Tom Cassidy.
9 Welcome to Mojoworld
“Welcome To Mojoworld” from The Uncanny X-Men Annual #10 in 1986 is one of the weirdest X-Men stories by virtue of its antagonist. Mojo is one of the most evil X-Men villains and he’s also one of the most outrageous.
A spineless alien floating in a hover chair, he presides over a world in which all its citizens are either forced to watch endless TV or participate in violent content. This story arc would play out over several years, getting weirder and weirder, eventually introducing the cute but strange X-Babies.
8 Professor X Marries Mystique
There are a number of strange romances in the X-Men comics. One of the weirdest has to be the marriage between Professor X and Mystique. This was a retcon, revealed only after Professor X’s death at the end of the Avengers Vs. X-Men story arc.
It resulted in a lot of blank looks and jokes on the part of the X-Men, but the weird development never really went anywhere. Eventually, the marriage was retconned away in the comic books and it never actually happened.
7 Cyclops Has A Tumultuous Family Life
The appeal of the X-Men is in part the deep interpersonal relationships between the characters and their many ups and downs. Some downs are deeper and weirder than others. In one of the stranger story arcs of the series, Cyclops leaves his wife Madelyne Pryor and their child, Nathan, to go back to Jean Grey.
It gets even weirder as Madelyne is eventually revealed to be a clone of Jean Grey, created by Mr. Sinister. She then becomes the Goblin Queen in the “Inferno” storyline from 1989. Nathan would be aged up dramatically into Cable, a time-traveling mutant.
6 Adam-X Is Another Summers Brother
The Summers family is one of the most complicated in comics. In a major story arc from the’ 90s, the character of Adam X the X-Treme was heavily hinted to be the brother of Scott and Alex Summers throughout numerous issues of X-Force and X-Men. Secret family members are a standard trope in comics, but this never came to be in the ’90s.
The storyline was unceremoniously dropped and only recently picked back up in the pages of X-Men Legends, which addresses the Summers family tree.
5 X-Men Vs. Dracula
Leprechauns weren’t the only mythical creatures the X-Men fought in the ’70s. The all-new X-Men also fought against Dracula in one of their weirder adventures. The story wasn’t exactly scary and played more for humor with Colossus trying a fastball special with Wolverine against Dracula.
They fought on a number of occasions, including Uncanny X-Men #159 and Uncanny X-Men Annual #6, where the X-Men try to save Storm from the Prince of Darkness. They also fought against him in a mini-series titled X-Men Vs. Dracula from 1993.
4 Wolverine Devolves
One of the weirder storylines from the 90s involved Wolverine devolving into a feral version of himself. This version of Wolverine lost all his adamantium in a brutal attack by Magneto in the Fatal Attractions story arc and then began to become increasingly animalistic.
Beginning in Wolverine #90, the character became more and more erratic and violent, and his physical appearance also changed, with him essentially losing his entire nose.
3 The Cross Time Caper
Excalibur was in general one of the weirder and more humorous X-Men comics of the late 80s. This was on full display in “The Cross-Time Caper” story arc, which ran between Excalibur #12 and 24 and involved neither time travel or a caper of any real sort.
The story does feature one of the big early explorations of the multiverse, with the team hopping from one reality to another and enjoying different adventures in each. Time travel is a major staple of X-Men comics, with the team visiting some of Marvel Comics’ darkest timelines.
2 The X-Men Just Don’t Tell Anyone They’re Alive
In the late-’80s, the X-Men appear to die at the end of the “Fall Of The Mutants” crossover. They actually survive and operate in secrecy in the Australian Outback.
For several years, they tell none of their grieving friends and allies (like the aforementioned Excalibur) that they’re really alive. Though the X-Men routinely operate all over the world, including major Marvel fictional countries like Madripoor, they never say a word to anyone until the “Inferno” crossover of 1989.
1 The Starjammers
Cyclops’ family tree is very weird, and that arguably begins with his father, Corsair. He is the leader of the Starjammers, a crew of space pirates, who debuted in Uncanny X-Men #107 in October 1977. Scott Summers originally thought his parents died in an accident but Corsair, whose real name is Christopher Summers, had been out in space the entire time.
The Starjammers would open up the X-Men to a lot of cosmic weirdness, including the Shi’Ar Empire, some of Marvel Comics’ most powerful cosmic beings, as well as the cataclysmic events of The Dark Phoenix Saga.
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