In 1975, Marvel comics readers got their first glimpse at a new generation of X-Men heroes in Giant-Size X-Men #1. This new team consisted of characters who would one day become fan-favorites, including Nightcrawler, Storm, and most importantly (for this list at least) Colossus. Piotr Rasputin, aka Colossus, grew up on a collective farm with his siblings, both of whom also ended up being mutants. At around 13, Colossus learned that he was a mutant with the ability to transform into a metal giant at will. At first, Colossus only used his powers to help his family on the farm, but after Piotr transformed in order to save his sister Illyana, Professor X contacted him about joining the X-Men. Wanting to do more with his amazing powers, Colossus agreed to join the X-Men and the rest, as they say, is comic book history.
Colossus has since gone on hundreds of amazing adventures with the X-Men, making him one of the most popular characters in the franchise. He’s also appeared in numerous films, including both Deadpool and, most recently, Deadpool 2. Still, even though casual fans know of Colossus, they don’t really know much about him. He rarely stars in X-Men series’ and as a character, he’s usually pretty shy and reserved. With that being said, there are still a lot of interesting (and sometimes weird) facts about Colossus that readers can find in the comics. If you think you’re a diehard X-Men fan and an expert on all things Colossus, keep reading to test your knowledge!
20 CYTTORAK'S FAVORITE AVATAR
During the “Fear Itself” storyline, Magik offered herself to the demon Cytorrak, who required a new host after leaving Juggernaut’s body. Colossus couldn’t stand the thought of his sister becoming a demon’s puppet so he intercepted the trade and became Cytorrak’s new avatar.
Along with gaining Juggernaut’s powers, Colossus began to show physical signs of Cytorrak’s parasitic habitation, including claws and spikes. None of the other Cytorrak hosts have ever shown a “demon form” as Colossus did. Later on, Cytorrak revealed to Colossus that he gave Colossus a demon form because he was one of his favorite hosts. As a superhero, Colossus was constantly engaging in destructive fights, which fed Cytorrak’s need for chaos and war.
19 ARCADE BRAINWASHED HIM
Being a member of the X-Men means being willing to go into some pretty scary situations. One of Colossus’ craziest adventures came (unfortunately) shortly after he joined the X-Men. Miss Locke captured Colossus’ younger sister, Illyana, in an effort to get the X-Men’s attention. She needed their help to get her friend, Arcade, out of Dr. Doom’s clutches.
Somehow, during the skirmish, Arcade brainwashed Colossus, turning him into the blood-crazed "Proletarian." Fairly quickly, the X-Men countered the brainwashing and Colossus brought Illyana back to the mansion with him. After seeing what the world’s villains were capable of, he didn’t want her out of his sight. Naturally, not long after that, Illyana became trapped in Limbo for years.
18 DOESN'T HAVE TO BREATHE (OR EAT)
When in his metal form, Colossus’ body doesn’t act like a normal, human body. This means he doesn’t have to eat, drink, breathe, or go to the bathroom. Some readers assume Colossus’ mutant ability creates a metal coating around him, but in reality, every cell in his body transforms when he goes into his metal form. His metal form organs, from his lungs to his digestive tract, don’t work the same way.
Of course, Colossus has to be conscious in order to maintain his metal form. When someone knocks him out in battle, he instantly goes back to his human form, which needs air and food to survive.
17 LOVES NEIL DIAMOND
Most comics are all about the action. An issue of X-Men doesn’t feel complete unless Prof. X and his students KO some Sentinels, take down Magneto, and save the world. After all, that’s kind of their job: using their amazing powers to fight evil. Very rarely do readers get an up-close look at who these characters actually are, out of uniform and off the battlefield. Beyond the occasional wedding, writers rarely give superheroes’ regular lives a lot of panel-time.
However, when they do, it’s usually pretty amusing. According to a few different X-Men issues, Colossus is a big fan of musician Neil Diamond. Apparently, he bought his first album by the artist in 1995 and has loved his music ever since.
16 FELL IN LOVE WITH AN ALIEN HEALER
During the original “Secret Wars” comic event, the X-Men found themselves on a seemingly alien planet, surrounded by familiar and unfamiliar friends and foes. Shortly after arriving, Colossus became severely injured. Not wanting to waste time, the X-Men left Colossus in the care of a talented alien healer named Zsaji. Even though they spoke different languages (and Zsaji had a relationship with the Human Torch) the two eventually fell in love.
But, as with all comic romances, Colossus and Zsaji’s relationship didn’t last. Zsaji ended up sacrificing herself in order to save Colossus. Devastated and heartbroken, Colossus officially broke up with his long-term love interest Kitty Pryde after returning from Battleworld. It took many years for them to get back together.
15 ULTIMATE ADDICT
The early 2000’s Ultimate line of comics set up an alternate version of the Marvel world that we all know and love. Some of the Ultimate series’ did well, but most X-Men fans didn’t particularly like the Ultimate X-Men series, partly because the writers made some changes that were just a little too big to be forgiven. Take, for example, Colossus who, in the Ultimate Universe, was an addict.
Ultimate Colossus couldn’t move his body after transforming into his metal form, which made him powerless in battle. In order to move his joints, Colossus had to take a mutant enhancement substance called Banshee. Colossus had to constantly use Banshee in order to keep up with his fellow X-Men members.
14 HAILS FROM A FAMOUS BLOODLINE
If you know anything about the history of Russia, you’ve probably heard the name Grigory Rasputin. During the last days of the Empire, Grigory befriended the royal family and persuaded the Tsar that he was a powerful mystic. In the Marvel Universe, most of Grigory’s history is the same except for a few key facts.
Sometime during Grigory’s life, he met Mister Sinister who helped him discover his mutant ability of rebirth. In order to be reborn in the future, Grigory needed descendants who could serve as his future hosts. He impregnated a woman named Elena, who would eventually become Colossus’ great-great-grandmother. The reason why Colossus, his sister Magik, and their brother Mikhail are all powerful mutants is because they hail from the Rasputin bloodline.
13 IS (SORT OF) MISTER SINISTER
Alternate realities in comics are, generally speaking, insane. They allow writers to pretty much do whatever they want without having to worry about canon consequences. One of the more famous alternate realities in the Marvel universe was Earth-9997, which appeared in the Earth X comic series. The series outlined what would happen if all of humanity gained superpowers.
None of the X-Men have particularly large roles, though Colossus does make a few key appearances. During one of his scenes, he reveals to Nightcrawler that, at one point, he was Mr. Sinister. According to Colossus, he went back in time in order to manipulate other members of the X-Men. Whether or not that’s true (or even possible) we’ll leave up to you.
12 VULNERABLE TO VIBRANIUM
Colossus’ metal form is made of a kind of organic steel that isn’t on Earth. Every time Colossus transforms, he psionically trades his carbon cells for ionic osmium cells, which are conveniently located in a different dimension. Compared to most metals, this special kind of osmium is incredibly dense, durable, and strong. If it weren’t, Colossus would be a tin can by the end of every fight.
With all that being said, Colossus does have some major weaknesses. His metal form is susceptible to the anti-metal known as Vibranium. Typically, Vibranium is located in Wakanda, which means Colossus would be useless in a fight against the Black Panther. When confronted with the metal, Colossus automatically reverts back to his human form.
11 METAL FORM CAN BE PERMANENTLY BENT
Every member of the X-Men has limits, including Colossus. When in his metal form, Colossus is near indestructible, but he isn’t quite there yet. During "World War Hulk", Hulk (in a show of strength) bent back Colossus’ arm, essentially breaking them. When someone bends Colossus’ metal form, he has to stay metal until someone fixes the breaks, or else risk serious injury to his human form.
With his Hulk injuries, Colossus enlisted the help of X-Men scientist Beast, who used a hot laser to heat up the metal. When the metal reached a certain temperature, Strong Guy would then slowly bend the metal back into place. At other times, Magneto has helped Colossus recover from metal injuries by using his magnetism abilities.
10 KITTY PRYDE LEFT HIM AT THE ALTAR
Ever since Colossus and Kitty Pryde met, way back in X-Men #129, these two have been crushing hard. While each of them have had some pretty serious relationships outside of their perfect love story, they somehow always came back to each other. In the months leading up to their marriage (check out X-Men Gold series for details), things seemed to be looking up for the pair. Kitty proposed to Colossus and they, seemingly, were very much in love.
And then X-Men Gold #30 hit. The issue that was supposed to show their lovey-dovey wedding ended with Colossus standing alone at the altar. Since then, things have been understandably awkward between the two characters. Hopefully this means they’ll never rehash their romance again in the future.
9 HE'S HELPLESS WHEN BATTLING MAGNETO
There are two characters who, when battling Magneto, always seem to forget that he’s the Master of Magnetism: Wolverine and Colossus. These two legendary X-Men characters are partially (or completely) made of metal, which means they’re susceptible to Magneto’s attacks. This is both ironic and unfortunate considering just how prevalent Magneto is in the comics.
However, sometimes Magneto’s ability to manipulate metal comes in handy for Colossus. Contrary to popular belief, Colossus' opponents can injure him in battle if they hit with enough force or with a stronger metal. His metal form can become severely bent, limiting his movement. Using his powers, Magneto can correct these fractures and essentially “heal” the metal mutant.
8 LIQUID METAL FORM
Like pretty much all of the X-Men, Colossus was, for around 30 seconds, part of Apocalypse’s Horsemen of the Apocalypse. In Extraordinary X-Men, Colossus and his team traveled to Omega World, where they encountered a very angry Apocalypse. To save his teammates, Colossus sacrificed himself, allowing Apocalypse to transform him into one of his Four Horsemen.
The transformation (naturally) came with some downsides, like having to become Apocalypse’s lap dog. But, it also came with some positives, including a huge power upgrade. When in his Horseman form, Colossus had the ability to liquefy his metal form at will. In liquid metal form, Colossus could extend his limbs and hit targets dozens of feet away.
7 BECAME A VERY FAMOUS PAINTER
Along with being an expert fighter, a master swordsman, and an X-Men veteran, Colossus is also a skilled painter. When he isn’t busy saving the world, the mutant enjoys sitting down with some paints and a canvas. When he was younger, back before he joined the X-Men, Colossus taught himself how to paint on his family’s farm, which might be why he finds it comforting later in life.
In the comics, readers rarely get to see Colossus paint, since (for obvious reasons) he doesn’t get a lot of free time. He mostly uses painting as a form of therapy, particularly after severe injuries. When he temporarily lost his memories, Colossus became a well-known artist under the name Peter Nicholas as a way to recover.
6 CURED THE LEGACY VIRUS
During the '90s, most X-Men comics centered around one thing: the Legacy Virus. The deadly virus, which served as a metaphor for the AIDS epidemic, decimated the mutant population and the X-Men ranks. Colossus’ sister, Illyana, perished from the virus, which made it all the more personal for the metal mutant. For years, there was no cure for the virus and no hope for those who caught it. Finally, after the end of countless mutants, Beast found a cure. Sort of.
In order to activate the cure’s powers, Beast had to inject it into a mutant's bloodstream. Colossus immediately volunteered, even though Beast warned him that the process would be fatal. For Colossus, it was worth it to save mutantkind.
5 JUGGERNAUT 2.0
It’s the ultimate X-Men battle: the Juggernaut vs Colossus. They’re two of the heaviest hitters in the X-Men world so the rivalry naturally works. It even appears on-screen, during the climatic final scene in Deadpool 2.
So, what would happen if Colossus became the new Juggernaut? When Colossus became Cyttorak’s new avatar, replacing Cain Marko, he took on the powers (and signature uniform) of the Juggernaut. Colossus constantly struggled with his powers and new personality. Unlike Cain, Colossus hated the bombarding destructive thoughts that came along with being Cyttorak’s avatar. Luckily for him, Colossus wasn’t the Juggernaut for long. Magik cut Colossus’ ties with Cyttorak during the Avengers vs. X-Men miniseries.
4 IMMUNE TO MANY ATTACKS
In extreme circumstances, super-strong opponents can bend Colossus’ metal form, resulting in some gnarly injuries. However, those are extremely rare. It’s important to keep in mind just how superhumanly durable Colossus really is. The mountain of metal is immune to electrical attacks and can rebuke most mystical and magical energy assaults. The latter one is pretty useful when your sister is the ruler of the demonic dimension Limbo.
Colossus isn’t completely immune to magical attacks, but, because of his transformative abilities, magic rarely does a lot of damage. A lot of the fancy metals in the Marvel universe are capable of neutralizing magic, so Colossus’ hidden ability does (surprisingly) make sense.
3 PART OF PHOENIX FIVE
Avengers vs. X-Men was a weird time for Marvel Comics. A ton of strange things happened in a short amount of time, including the creation of the all-powerful Phoenix Five. As most X-Men fans probably already know (unless you only watched The Last Stand), the Phoenix is one of the most powerful intergalactic forces in the Marvel Universe. In Avengers vs. X-Men, the Force became split between five members of the X-Men: Cyclops, Emma Frost, Magik, Namor, and Colossus.
None of the Phoenix Five members kept their powers for very long. Colossus and Magik got into a heated fight that ended in the loss of both of their Phoenix portions.
2 ISN'T AFRAID TO CROSS THE LINE
The X-Men aren’t Batman -- most of them are willing to take a life when they have to. They may not like to admit it, but many of the X-Men members have crossed the line to protect their friends, Colossus included. During the “Mutant Massacre” storyline, Colossus became infuriated after witnessing the Marauders massacre the Morlocks (we know, it’s confusing). In an anger-fueled rage, Colossus smashed Riptide, which ended up putting him into a temporary paralysis.
Years later, when fighting the Brood, Colossus took down Whiphand to save fellow X-Men member Havok. As long as it’s to save his friends, Colossus won’t hesitate to end one of his opponents. While we haven’t seen him do it to anyone recently, we don’t particularly want to get on his bad side.
1 ALIENS BROUGHT HIM BACK TO LIFE
Rule number one in comics: no one stays gone for long. Almost every comic character has perished once or twice but (for the most part) they always come back, usually better than before. After sacrificing himself to cure the Legacy Virus, the X-Men had Colossus’ body cremated... or, so they thought.
In reality, a creepy alien guy named Ord captured Colossus, brought him back to life, and began experimenting on him. For years, Ord performed bad experiments on Colossus in a hidden lab. When Ord found the Legacy Virus still in Colossus’ body, he was able to modify it slightly, creating a “cure” for mutant DNA. When the X-Men heard about this “cure” they investigated, which led to Kitty finding the battered (but alive) Colossus.