When it comes to mainstream audiences, especially those who only know the X-Men from the movies and possibly cartoons based on the characters, there isn't a better X-Man than Wolverine. Hugh Jackman turned in a fantastic performance as the diminutive Canadian mutant and at least one of the cartoons had Wolverine's name in the title -- before the words X-Men even appeared. It is clear that, as far as Marvel is concerned, there isn't a better member of the X-Men than Logan. However, when looking at the character -- especially the character from the comic books -- there is a strong argument that Wolverine isn't the best X-Men, but is, in fact, the worst member of the team.
Looking back over the history of Wolverine and the X-Men, it is strange to think that he is so revered by comic book fans. It is also interesting to think that Professor X didn't fire Wolverine many times over the years for multiple violations of the X-Men code of conduct. Then again, Professor X isn't innocent in this either and might be more culpable for Logan's actions than anyone. With decades of bad behavior and poor teamwork, here is a look at 15 reasons that Wolverine is the worst X-Man.
15 HE IS AN ALPHA-MALE (AND THAT ISN'T A GOOD THING)
When one thinks of Wolverine, what image comes to mind? He drinks a lot, he chomps on a lot of cigars and he doesn't bathe much. He likes to fight a little too much, he calls everyone "bub" and he has what some might label "toxic masculinity." Wolverine is everything that is wrong with an alpha male and is a terrible superhero as a result.
The main reason that Professor X put the X-Men together was to prove to humans that they could live in peace with mutants. This opposed the ideas of Magneto that mutants should fear people and should work to control the world instead of living in peace. Wolverine is not the type of hero that fits into Xavier's goals and is nothing more than an over-adrenalized weapon of mass destruction with a temper that strikes fear into people rather than promoting peace.
14 WOLVERINE IS NOT MENTALLY STABLE
Wolverine is not all there. Honestly, out of all the superheroes in the world today, Logan has way too many mental holes and deficiencies for anyone to fully trust him -- and that includes the X-Men. Through his life, too many people have messed with his brain. From the training at Weapon X to the mind manipulation from Professor X, not even Wolverine's healing factor can fully repair the damage to his brain.
Look at the period of time where Logan became feral. Look at the times where he has completely zoned out and fought everyone around him -- friend or foe. How can any team, with the fate of the world on the line, trust someone who can snap at any moment and go completely berserk? Wolverine is a loose canon thanks to his mental instability and that makes him a terrible X-Man.
13 HE LEAVES TOO MUCH FOR PERSONAL REASONS
One of the big problems when it comes to Logan and his mental instability is that he has no idea who he really is. The best X-Men members are there on call when needed to save the world from Magneto, the Hellfire Club or the Dark Phoenix. Wolverine has helped save the day more times than one can count but he also has a really bad habit.
Wolverine likes to take off for personal reasons, and those reasons are usually because he is always trying to figure out who he is and where he came from. Whether he is running off to Japan to fight ninjas or searching through Canada to find hints at his origin, Wolverine is way too preoccupied with his past to bother with his future with the X-Men.
12 WOLVERINE TREATS WOMEN HORRIBLY
For someone who drinks and smokes as much as Wolverine, and someone who rarely bathes and cares very little for personal hygiene, Logan gets a lot of women. Sure, his greatest love was Mariko -- and he treated her like a queen -- but everyone else he dated has often been at the blunt end of his "toxic masculinity."
Wolverine has been with Silver Fox, Viper, Mystique, Yukio, Domino, Black Cat, Squirrel Girl, Snowbird, Dazzler and many more, almost all of whom he has treated like garbage. He has even hooked up with Storm after her marriage to Black Panther was annulled. To make it worse, in the Ultimate Universe, he spent time in the body of Peter Parker and tried to sleep with an underaged Mary Jane.
11 HE IS ALSO A HORRIBLE JERK TO OTHER HEROES
Part of being an X-Man is about being part of a team. It means being a friend and ally to the men and women who depend on you to have their backs. Wolverine has saved his teammates on numerous occasions but he has also fought them just as many times. Wolverine is someone who likes to claim he has no friends and then does everything in his power to make sure no one likes him.
He fights with Cyclops every chance he gets. Spider-Man makes fun of him. Deadpool makes fun of him. Logan makes fun of everyone and has no respect for anyone unless he wants something from them -- hello, Jean Grey. Interestingly, Captain America seems to respect Logan while hating The Punisher, despite the fact that the two characters are similar. However, when it comes to most heroes -- including the X-Men -- there is little to like about Wolverine.
10 HE SPREADS HIMSELF TOO THIN
The X-Men need their members to be loyal to them, but Wolverine is not someone who likes to stick with a super team. However, for someone who considers himself a loner with no real friends, Logan sure does love to join other superhero teams outside of the X-Men. This makes him someone who the X-Men can't rely on.
Wolverine has been a member of The Avengers, the Fantastic Four, Alpha Flight, the Secret Avengers, the Secret Defenders, Department H, Department K, and was even part of the Horsemen of Apocalypse. Honestly, it almost seems like Logan just pretends to be a loner and wants to be part of every team he can with no loyalty to any of them.
9 WOLVERINE DIDN'T JOIN X-MEN OF HIS OWN FREE WILL
There is also a huge problem for why Logan joined the X-Men in the first place. Long-time fans know that Wolverine was one of the new members who joined the team when they rebooted the entire franchise to try to win fans back over with a new lineup. However, that was the main origin and then there is the secret origin -- the real reason Logan joined the X-Men.
Wolverine Origins #29 saw Logan go to the mansion to murder Professor X. Chares knew Logan was coming and let him in, despite knowing his plan to kill him. The reason he gave was that he needed a weapon for the team and then used his immense powers to scramble Wolverine's brain even more, tricking him into joining the team against his own will. Wolverine didn't even want to be an X-Man.
Want proof that Wolverine is worthless to the X-Men? His entire skeleton is made of adamantium. Which is a metal. The X-Men's most dangerous enemy for years was Magneto. The Master of Magnetism's main power was controlling metal. It seems kind of strange to have a key member of the X-Men's biggest weakness to be the strength of their main villain.
Now, for storyline purposes, it makes sense for a hero to have to overcome their greatest weakness. It also is good storytelling to have their main nemesis have a strength that puts the hero in the worst possible predicament. This isn't about storytelling. This is about the X-Men having a member of their team basically worthless in a fight with their arch nemesis, and a liability because of it. Proof exists in X-Men #25 (1993) when Magneto rips the adamantium off of Wolverine's entire skeleton.
7 WOLVERINE IS SELFISH
It has already been determined that Wolverine will up and leave the X-Men anytime he needs to learn more about his past, fight ninjas in Japan or live in the woods like the angst-ridden loner that he really is. That isn't much for being a team player and it all comes down to Wolverine being a selfish person -- and that is the worst trait of all when it comes to being a good X-Man.
Take one look at the movies and see how Wolverine is depicted there -- which is much better than his depiction in the comic books. He meets Cyclops and Jean Grey and immediately starts to fracture the team by trying to come in between the two of them. He also holds grudges and will always put his teammates in danger when his unchecked rage gets the better of him, making his sense of vengeance more important than his team's needs.
6 HE BETRAYED THE X-MEN WHEN THEY FOUGHT THE AVENGERS
What makes Wolverine the worst X-Man? In the comic book series Avengers vs. X-Men, Wolverine takes the side of The Avengers. Hell, Storm destroyed her marriage to Black Panther by remaining by the side of her mutant brethren, but Wolverine immediately jumped to the side of Captain America, Iron Man and the Avengers, betraying the X-Men instantly.
Yes, by the end the X-Men are painted as villains due to their members being infected by the Dark Phoenix, but The Avengers were militant and not completely in the right in this fight. There is one other huge problem here. The X-Men wanted to protect Hope Summers while The Avengers wanted to imprison her. However, Wolverine wanted to kill her to end the threat -- which makes no sense because Dark Phoenix is still out there even if Logan murders the young girl.
5 HE STEALS THE SPOTLIGHT
The title of the animated series Wolverine and the X-Men is a perfect example of how important Wolverine is to Marvel. The fact that Wolverine is the only character to appear in every single X-Men movie in some sort or another is proof of how important he is to Fox. However, while Logan is there every step of the way, does the character of Wolverine deserve that much attention?
Storm has incredible powers that are a varied as anyone in the Marvel Universe. After Avengers vs. X-Men, Cyclops proved that he is much more than the Boy Scout that Wolverine always painted him as. Jean Grey, Archangel (but not Angel), Rogue, Nightcrawler, Psylocke, Cable -- all of these characters are much more interesting and powerful than Wolverine. Logan takes the attention away from all these more deserving X-Men members.
4 WOLVERINE HAS NO RESPECT
Wolverine is selfish and has no respect for other superheroes. That is a given and was already discussed. However, that has a huge setback for his role as a member of The X-Men. Wolverine has no respect for the team leaders and that makes him a wildcard. Sure, people love the anti-authority figures and Wolverine reaches that person who feels held down by "The Man."
If Wolverine was someone like The Punisher who struck out on his own and wants no partners, that is a perfect attitude to have. When Wolverine is a member of The X-Men, he needs to be a member of the team and that means respecting his team leaders. Logan never gave Cyclops any respect. He slept with Storm when she was a team leader. He is the one person who will always put Professor X in check. Fans might love that but it makes him a really bad X-Man.
3 HIS POWERS SUCK COMPARED TO HIS TEAMMATES
If you have the time, look for the amazing video series by comedian Pete Holmes titled "Ex-Men." In this series, Holmes plays Professor X and he fires every member of the team that he deems worthless based on their powers. The episode where he fires Wolverine is a riot and is completely on the money. When it comes to his mutant powers, Wolverine is basically worthless to the team.
Wolverine has the healing factor, meaning that if he is blasted by an explosion, he will heal -- over time. What good does that do to the X-Men when they are in a giant battle. Take a look at Days of Future Past where the Sentinels disintegrate Wolverine. Sure, he will come back but by that time his partners are all dead. He has claws but if the X-Men have to save people, how does that help? Nothing about Wolverine's powers make him a value to his teammates.
2 HE IS A HORRIBLE ROLE MODEL FOR THE STUDENTS
There is one thing that people need to keep in mind when looking at Wolverine as a member of the X-Men. Yes, Professor X put the team together to fight villains and save the world and prove that mutants are good and just beings, no different than regular humans. However, the original team was made up of kids -- teenagers who had to learn how to use and control their powers.
As the X-Men series continued on, the Xavier Institute became a full-fledged school with dozens of mutants learning from their teachers how to control their powers as well as regular schooling. Members like Storm, Kitty Pride and Wolverine became teachers. So a self-centered, egotistical jerk with anger and authority issues teaches kids who need a mentor. That is a recipe for disaster.
1 WOLVERINE IS A COLD-BLOODED KILLER
The biggest reason that Wolverine is the worst X-Man is that he is not a hero -- he is a cold-blooded killer. Wolverine has two powers. He has his healing factor and he has sharp claws. His only power is to stab people and heal fast if they hit him first. That makes him nothing more than a fighter and his main weapon are long knives to kill anyone he stabs.
Punisher is a killer and has murdered villains that would fill a list a mile long. Wolverine has been alive for over 100 years and has killed as many if not more people that The Punisher. When the Dark Phoenix was coming for Hope Summers, his idea was to kill her. The X-Men are a force for good in the world and a mass murderer in their ranks goes against everything they stand for. Wolverine is the worst X-Man ever.