A secret society often finding itself in conflict with the X-Men, the Hellfire Club has proved to be one of the most formidable villainous organizations in Marvel comics. Their many evil plans matched with their powerful members helped propel the Hellfire Club to becoming one of the most powerful organizations in the world.
Given their nebulous nature, not much is known about the Hellfire Club. Within the organization are several dark secrets waiting to be discovered. Here are ten secrets of the Hellfire Club, ranked.
10 All About Power
The purpose of the Hellfire Club has remained somewhat a secret since its inception. Given their mysterious nature, it's hard to know exactly what they are up to. The members of the Hellfire Club do have a specific goal in mind however, and they will use any means to achieve it.
In the end, everything is about power and influence. It doesn't seem as though the club has any specific or overt political agenda. They don't wish to change the world in any really significant way. Instead, the members of the Inner Circle hope to amass as much power and influence as they can. Whether that by physical, political, financial, or power in some other form, all they care about is gaining more.
9 Shaw's Takeover
When the Hellfire Club betrayed Sebastion Shaw, that proved to be an extremely stupid mistake. Shaw had always been one of the club's most loyal and influential members. Crossing him is a mistake that few come back from.
After a failed Sentinel attack on Shaw's home resulted in the death of Lourdes Chantel, his lover, Shaw joined up with Emma Frost and took the fight back to his former allies. In one night, the two mutants killed every member of the Inner Circle before reforming it with Shaw as the leader.
8 The Black Queen
With the induction of Mastermind, also known as Jason Wyngarde, to the Hellfire Club's Inner Circle, the evil group of supervillains began a very dangerous plot. Hoping to harness the power of the Phoenix, Mastermind used his mind-altering powers to brainwash Jean Grey.
Now in service of the Hellfire Club, Jean became known as the Black Queen, a title given to a particular member of the Inner Circle. Joining the Hellfire Club, Jean immediately made them extremely powerful, especially given that she was possessed by the Phoenix at the time.
7 Shinobi Shaw
Sebastion was not the only Shaw to make a name for himself within the Hellfire Club. His son, Shinobi Shaw, also joined the secret society for some time. In fact, Shinobi didn't just join the Hellfire Club's Inner Circle, he became its leader.
After an assassination attempt on his father which had appeared successful, Shinobi was under the impression that the Hellfire Club was his for the taking. His ambition was great, and after taking control of the New York branch Shinobi set his sights on the Hellfire Club Inner Circle located in London. All of these plans were squashed when Sebastion revealed himself to be alive and retook the club from his son.
6 Shaw's Second Circle
After overthrowing his son and retaking the club, Sebastian Shaw formed his second Inner Circle. This group of mutants proved to be even more powerful than the first had been.
Among these new members were Selene, Trevor Fitzroy, Donald Pierce, Tessa, Ella, Miss Hoo, Holocaust, and Madelyn Pryor. Most notable among these new members were Holocaust and Madelyn Pryor. The first was an extremely powerful mutant who had traveled from the alternate Age of Apocalypse reality. The latter was an incredibly powerful clone of Jean Grey.
5 Joining the X-Men
During a time after the Sentinel Nimrod attacked both the Hellfire Club and the X-Men, the two mutant groups decided to join forces. While this alliance was doomed to eventually fall apart, it was interesting to see them team up for a time.
Magneto and Storm were the leaders of the X-Men at the time, and the two mutant leaders became the White King and Queen of the Inner Circle. Magneto especially seemed to fit right in, using machiavellian methods to get Shaw kicked out of the group and amass a little more power for himself.
4 Hellfire Academy
Hoping to train an army of mutants to fight on behalf of the Hellfire Club, the Hellfire Academy was formed. At the time the club was led by a prepubescent super-genius named Kade Kilgore.
For a time this new mutant academy served as a direct and formidable competitor to the Jean Grey School of Higher Learning. Eventually, however, due to Kilgore's evil intentions, the staff of the Jean Grey School destroyed the Hellfire Academy once and for all.
3 The Sentinel Program
After Bolivar Trask's initial failure to use Sentinels against the mutant population, many of his plans were seized by the government. The US Government then had Stephen Lang revise and resurrect the program.
Lang didn't actually answer to the United States, however. Instead, because of the massive amounts of funding he had received, Lang answered to the Hellfire Club.
2 Inner Circle
The Inner Circle is the most important part of the Hellfire Club. Made up of a group of wealthy, powerful people, the Inner Circle would be dangerous enough even if they didn't have the full support and control of the many other club members.
Most of the Inner Circle members are blessed with powerful mutant abilities. In fact, they are so powerful that at times the Inner Circle has easily defeated the X-Men.
1 Lord Imperial
For quite some time it was believed that the members of the Inner Circle were the top of the hierarchy within the Hellfire Club. That is not the case. Actually, all Inner Circles and branches of the Hellfire Club answer to the Lord Imperial.
Working from behind the scenes, the Lord Imperial controls all aspects of the club in hopes of becoming the most powerful man on Earth. For a time Sir Gordon Phillips was the club's Lord Imperial. Sometime after his death, Sebastion Shaw took up the mantle.