As one of the biggest team in all of comics, Marvel’s X-Men have gone through a lot. Over the years, the team has been to space, traveled through time, and come into conflict with some of the most powerful beings in the universe. As some of Marvel’s top-selling books, the X-Men have also partaken in many of Marvel’s event books, either playing a major role or spotlighting the event themselves.
However, some of these events are easily better than others, with some even going so far as to really upset fans. Looking closely at the superteam over time, here is our list of the 5 best X-Men events in Marvel history, and the 5 worst.
10 Schism (Worst)
For all the hype around X-Men: Schism at the time, fans ended up being rather let down by the outcome. In an event that was designed to separate the X-Men, the book succeeded, but in a very odd manner. For many, the character’s decisions often felt uncharacteristic.
Furthermore, many have noted that the schism itself felt very forced, and that the issue was only brought about because Marvel felt the need to divide the X-Men. Regardless, the event still had some major repercussions, as the X-Men would remain divided for years following this story. While it may not be the best X-Men event, Schism is still one of the most impactful.
9 Second Coming (Best)
In a time where the X-Men’s future seemed to be going in many different directions, Second Coming shines as one of the better stories from this period. Before the events of Avengers Vs X-Men, the number of mutants in the Marvel Universe had drastically been reduced, thanks to Scarlet Witch.
However, hope for mutantkind is reignited when Hope, and all-new mutant, is finally born. Not only does this story span several books, but it is also one of the more contained X-Men events of this time. The things that came before and after it all still mattered, but the event itself is very satisfying considering the status of the team. While the end of the book does set things up for AVX, it, alone, is still enough to give any modern X-Men fan what they want.
8 IVX (Worst)
At the time IVX was published, Marvel was really pushing for the Inhumans to have a greater place in the Marvel Universe. With their close similarities to the X-Men as well as the effects the Terrigen Cloud had on mutants, it makes sense that an altercation would eventually occur between the two teams.
Despite being a more recent event, Inhumans Vs X-Men is mostly forgotten. Likewise, fans have noted that a lot of the story felt “pointless,” and that there were hardly any repercussions from the fallout. Lastly, the events revolving around Cyclops during this time are often considered to be a massive blow to the character. Overall, both Death of X and IVX just didn’t deliver on what they could have been.
7 Fatal Attractions (Best)
Fatal Attractions easily helps establish Magneto as one of Marvel’s deadliest villains. In one of his biggest moves yet, Magneto strikes with a plan to erase all of humanity. Throughout the story, several massive changes occurred, altering the course of the X-Men for several years. For example, Colossus defected to the acolytes, Xavier erased Magneto’s mind, and, most notably, Wolverine’s adamantium was stripped from his skeleton.
Overall, Fatal Attractions is not only one of the best Magneto stories, but one of the most important ones in X-Men history. Encompassing several X-Men books, it is also one of the larger X-Men events. Thankfully, the payoff of the story ended up being worth it in the end, easily earning Fatal Attractions its place on this list.
6 Deadly Genesis (Worst)
Giant Size X-Men #1 is considered by many to be the most important single issue in X-Men history. Not only did the issue re-launch the title and save it from cancellation, but it also began Wolverine’s long journey with the team. In the story, Xavier assembles a new team of X-Men to rescue the old team on Krakoa.
In Deadly Genesis, however, it is revealed that this team was actually the second one Xavier had sent, with the first team being almost completely obliterated. Upon their failure, Xavier wiped Cyclops’ mind and re established him as part of the new team. For years, things went unnoticed, until the return of Vulcan, the third Summers brother, came back with a vengeance. Though it seems like an interesting concept, the story really paints Charles Xavier in a negative light. Furthermore, for such an important moment in X-Men history, making everything into a lie didn’t bode well with fans.
5 Days of Future Past (Best)
To this day, X-Men: Days of Future Past remains one of the biggest events in X-Men history. Yet, for such a massive impact, the story itself only took place over 2 issues. In the future, things have gotten so bad for mutantkind that Kitty Pryde travels back in time to team with the X-Men and stop certain events from happening.
Though things turn out well in the end, this single story has continued to influence X-Men books. With a heavy focus on morality and a cautionary tale of the future, the book is packed with a lot of real-world lessons as well. Likewise, Days of Future Past is easily one of the most adapted X-Men stories of all-time, making it easy to see how it ranks so high.
4 Phoenix: Endsong/Warsong (Worst)
Jean Grey has an extensive history of death and rebirth. Much like the Phoenix Force that she is often tied to, Jean has been a part of this cycle since The Dark Phoenix Saga. Once Phoenix: Endsong/Warsong came out, however, Marvel “officially” put an end to the cycle. Nowadays, Jean Grey is once again among the land of the living.
At the time though, this storyline was definitely a big deal, as it meant that one of the most iconic X-Men characters wouldn’t be seen for quite some time in the Marvel Universe. While the stories themselves aren’t poorly written, a lot of the events that occured within didn’t exactly sit well with the fans.
3 Age of Apocalypse (Best)
As one of the biggest comic events ever, Age of Apocalypse took over every single X-Men related title at the time, even stopping some story arcs in the middle. After Legion travels back in time to kill Magneto, the entire world is changed when he accidentally kills Xavier instead. Because of this, radical changes were made to many characters. Magneto was leading the X-Men, Cyclops was a villain, and the entire world was in chaos.
Despite being such a large event though, Age of Apocalypse actually manages to remain one of the best X-Men stories. A lot of the crossover titles actually contribute to the main story and offer some more insight into the world, which is an incredibly hard task for an event this big. With so many things to take in all at once, it is actually surprising that Age of Apocalypse holds up, even to this day.
2 Holy War (Worst)
Chuck Austen’s Holy War is often considered to be one of the worst X-Men stories of all time. After building up Nightcrawler, the author reveals that his priesthood was faked as part of a plot by the Friends of Humanity. Furthermore, Austen makes a lot of religious errors and falsities throughout this story.
If that wasn’t enough, almost everything else in this story just happens. With very little reason behind a lot of character decisions, it is easy to see why this story is widely considered to be one of the worst in X-Men history. Overall, the story just feels like a massive insult to fans and the characters, easily making it one of (if not) the worst X-Men events of all time.
1 Dark Phoenix Saga (Best)
Between all other X-Men events, none are arguably more important than The Dark Phoenix Saga. After the Phoenix Force possesses Jean Grey, Jean uses the power to obliterate an entire alien race. From there, her powers grew so out of control, that her teammates were forced to kill her in order to save the world.
For years, X-Men books have called back to this very story, continually reminding readers of the impact that Jean and these events have had on the team. Though it is also not one of the larger X-Men books in terms of number of titles, The Dark Phoenix Saga remains the largest X-Men book in terms of impact.