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And God said unto Noah: "The end of all flesh is come before me; For the Earth is filled with violence through them; And, behold, I will destroy them with the Earth".
~ Magneto.

Magneto is the main villain of the X-Men mythos yet his Ultimate Marvel counterpart took this to a new level - unlike the more anti-hero Magneto most X-Men fans know from the "mainstream" series, the Ultimate version of Magneto was dark, cynical and sought to utterly dominate humanity (who he referred to as "insects") - he also openly called for genocide on more than one occasion.

This stands as a contrast to the mainstream Magneto, who only sought to rule over humanity by his own moral beliefs and has at times attempted to follow the peaceful ideals of human/mutant coexistence embodied by his on/off enemies, though he frequently returns to his darker path in life. He was also the first main villain of the Ultimate Marvel universe as a whole until his death in Ultimatum where he is replaced by Reed Richards/The Maker.

Biography

Origin

Erik Lensherr was born as the son of two Canadian Weapon-X agents. When he was 13, his magnetic mutant powers manifested, prompting his father to try and kill him in a drunken rage. By pure reflex, Erik deflected the bullet his father had fired and shot it back towards him, killing him. As Erik grew into his teens, he came to realize the truth of the environment he had been raised in and that he was a mutant. Disgusted by Weapon-X's torture of Mutant X and their attempts to find a cure for the mutant gene, Erik used his powers to free Mutant X, killing his mother and several other Weapon-X operatives in the process before fleeing the Weapon-X facility.

Erik went on to marry a human woman named Isabelle and eventually approached mutant telepath Charles Xavier after hearing of his work saving young mutant patients with uncontrollable powers. Lensherr and Xavier found each other fascinating, neither having met an adult mutant before. They became close friends and developed an ideology regarding mutants as mankind's replacements. Eventually, both men left their wives to found the Brotherhood of Mutants, a safe haven for persecuted mutants. Erik took his mutant children, Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver, conceived from a previous lover with him, and would later deny he ever loved his human spouse.

A few years later, the Brotherhood moved to a remote Pacific island, the Savage Land, to found a new civilization. Erik even devised a new language for this new world, going on to use it as a base for his radical movement.

Igniting War

Increasingly convinced humanity would not peacefully relinquish the planet to Homo Superior, Erik became more radical, regarding the Savage Land's citizens as an army. Abandoning his human name, Erik took the title "Magneto" and upon realizing that Xavier didn't agree with his views, a paranoid Magneto took to wearing a helmet to prevent psi intrusion into his mind. Xavier finally fled with a handful of followers, but Magneto decided to teach him a lesson and broke his spine, leaving him crippled. Soon after, Magneto led the Brotherhood, now renamed as the "Brotherhood of Mutant Supremacy", in an anti-human campaign of political assassinations and terrorist bombings.

Following an attack on Washington, the U.S. government unleashed robotic Sentinels on the mutant population in retaliation. When Xavier's new students, the X-Men, interfered, Magneto learned Xavier had survived, and sent Wolverine to slay his former friend. He also had the President's daughter kidnapped, which halted the Sentinel campaign; the X-Men soon rescued her. American authorities located the Savage Land and launched a massive Sentinel attack, but Magneto used his powers to reprogram them, leading them back to assault Washington. While the Sentinels decimated the capital, Magneto dragged the President naked on to the White House lawn. The X-Men intervened, and Magneto was defeated when Pietro convinced that genocide was going too far, removed his helmet, leaving him vulnerable to Xavier's powers. Xavier claimed to have killed Magneto, but had instead secretly wiped his memories and set him free, hoping to rehabilitate him.

Return of Magneto

For several months, the amnesiac Erik lived peacefully as a Manhattan social worker looking after disabled children; however, the Brotherhood eventually learned he was alive, and restored his memories. Magneto resumed the bombing campaign halted by his errant children, simultaneously gathering every mutant he could into a floating Arctic Citadel. With his powers now enhanced by a machine of Forge's design, Magneto intended to reverse Earth's magnetic field, leaving humanity to perish in the ensuing environmental chaos. The X-Men were able to stop him and imprison him in the Triskelion, home of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the Ultimates. He was eventually freed by Mystique and Forge afterwards

Magneto kept a promise to Blob to search for his daughter, Elizabeth Allan, once her powers were awoken. The moment she burst into flames, he tried to convince her to join the Brotherhood and introduce her father, as he was only known to her as Uncle Blob, whilst the X-Men want to show her how to control her powers. But she chooses to flee back home, but he followed her, telling her she must meet her father. But all the pressuring from both groups, forced her to flee and choose neither. Magneto was confident that she would join him, as would all mutants.

Death

During "Ultimatum", Magneto caused global devastation, killing millions of people. He personally killed Xavier by snapping his neck, and many other heroes died as well (such as Nightcrawler, Dazzler and Beast). In a final showdown, S.H.I.E.L.D. and the remains of the X-Men found his mobile base. Wolverine tried to kill him, but Magneto killed him instead. Jean Grey then forced Magneto to realized the truth of mutants, they're not endowed by divine influence, but unintended genetic inheritance from the super soldier program. Finally realizing the error of his ways, Magneto says that Charles would forgive him, with Cyclops replying that no one ever will now that Charles was gone. He then vaporized Magneto, killing him once and for all.

Legacy

Even though Magneto died, he left a greater intolerant world as humanity thinks of mutants as living weapons. Anti-Mutant sentiments flared and the X-Men no longer had the power to temper public contempt as their leaders are dead and their school now defunct and disbanded. However, his brotherhood was salvaged by Pietro. Quicksilver decided to keep his father's legacy to rule humanity one day.

Scarlet Witch seemingly returned from the dead, as well as Magneto. He began using his influence to convince people he was a new Messiah and instructed Scarlet Witch to carry out his commands for Pietro's group. After Pietro carried out the unintended wish of his father, the Nimrod units began wiping out mutants. Furious to know such an outcome, Wanda told Pietro to head to Egypt. From there, father and son would be reunited and Magneto comforted him.

When Mister Sinister returned, as well as Apocalypse, he revealed that the return of Magneto and Scarlet Witch were actually illusions made by Apocalypse, confirming Magneto's demise.

Trivia

The X-Men movie mythology borrowed heavily from the Ultimate comics rather than the "mainstream" and thus the movie version of Magneto can be seen as having a lot of the personality traits of the Ultimate Magneto (which explains why he was willing to commit mass genocide in that film, seemingly in contrast with what most X-Men fans believe to be Magneto's character).

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Movies
X-Men: Brotherhood of Mutants (Magneto, Mystique, Sabretooth & Toad) | Pyro
X2: William Stryker Jr. | Lady Deathstrike | Jason Stryker | Brotherhood of Mutants (Magneto, Mystique & Pyro)
X-Men: The Last Stand: Brotherhood of Mutants (Magneto, Dark Phoenix, Pyro, Juggernaut, Multiple Man & Mystique) | Omega Gang (Callisto, Psylocke, Quill, Arclight, Avalanche, Spike, Glob Herman & Phat) | Archangel
X-Men: First Class: Hellfire Club (Sebastian Shaw, Emma Frost, Azazel, Angel Salvadore & Riptide) | William Stryker Sr. | Magneto | Mystique
X-Men: Days of Future Past: Trask Industries (Bolivar Trask, William Stryker Jr. & Sentinels) | Magneto | Mystique | Toad | Horsemen of Apocalypse (Apocalypse)
X-Men: Apocalypse: Ashir En Sabah Nur/Horsemen of Apocalypse (Apocalypse, Magneto, Psylocke & Archangel) | Dark Phoenix | Mystique | William Stryker Jr. | Blob
Dark Phoenix: Dark Phoenix | D'Bari (Vuk & Jones) | Brotherhood of Mutants (Magneto & Selene Gallio) | Mystique

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