Marvel has painted its Merry Mutants with broad strokes of grey. The "worst-of-the-worst," Magneto, was written as a tragic character who really believed his violent way was the only way to save his fellow mutants. The "best-of-the-best," Professor Charles Xavier, turned out (over time) to be manipulative and dangerous, even as he preached that mutants needed to be better than the humans who feared them. In the comics of the last ten years, Cyclops became proof that even the biggest boy scouts of mutants can be corrupted, eventually taking a militaristic approach as leader of the team. But when it comes to Mystique, she has lived on that gray line her entire life -- she always wore her ambiguity on her sleeve.
At times, Mystique was a mutant extremist, someone who shared Magneto's beliefs that she needed to burn everything down to protect and save her fellow mutants. On other occasions, she was conflicted -- not wanting to be part of a war but knowing that she had no other choice. It got even worse in the movies when the Mystique character changed drastically into a hero, something that made no sense based on her character from the comics. As a result, in both movies and TV shows, Mystique found more people who wanted to take her down than she found people who would help her. This includes her fellow mutants, where there were just as many that she respected as there were mutants that she would just rather fight. Let's take a look at characters that fall on either side of the aisle, shall we?
20 RESPECTS: PROFESSOR X
When X-Men: First Class came out, the movies made an interesting choice. They took the villain Mystique and made her a hero who shared a storied relationship with Professor Charles Xavier. The two developed a close friendship and eventually drifted -- of course, until they teamed up to form the first iteration of the X-Men.
The movies also showed her start to develop a relationship with Magneto, which would lead her away from Charles over time. In the comics, Mystique at one point became a double-agent working for Xavier. It got even better in Uncanny X-Men (2013) #24 when She-Hulk read Charles' will and reported that he, in fact, was married to Mystique -- making their relationship even more complicated.
19 FIGHTS: WOLVERINE
Wolverine and Mystique have battled fiercely in the pages of the Marvel comic books and on the big screen. Fans of the movies saw first hand how little the two characters liked each other. Wolverine put his claws through Mystique in the first X-Men movie, and then she tried to trick and seduce him in X2: X-Men United!
Well, things get even deadlier in the comics. In Wolverine (Vol. 3) #62-65, the two endured a now-classic battle in which Wolverine came out on top. Maybe Mystique got a bit of revenge later when she was (partially, let's be fair) responsible for sending Wolverine's soul to Hell...
18 RESPECTS: DESTINY
Mystique's longest and closest companion was the mutant known as Destiny. The two met for the first time in the early years of the 20th century, Mystique with the ability to take the form of anyone and Destiny with precognitive powers. The two set out to try to figure out what the early prophesies of Destiny -- ones that left her blind and haunted -- really meant.
The women were both friends for life, as well as lovers on occasion, and they worked hard for many years to shape the future of the planet into one that would allow them both success in their goals and for the goals of mutant-kind. It was the passing of Destiny that marked two men -- Shadow King and Legion -- as mortal enemies of Mystique for life.
17 FIGHTS: SHADOW KING
Mystique and Destiny had originally faced problems with the Shadow King around the time of World War II and convinced a time-traveling Kitty Pride and Logan to stop in their plans to take out Hitler which could have destroyed their timeline. However, she might have wished she could have eliminated Shadow King after a tragedy years later.
After Destiny fell at the hands of Legion, Shadow King used the loss as a way to set his targets on a now depressed and broken Mystique. The evil mutant saw her as a threat and tried to use her handler to take her out, failing. In the "Muir Island Saga," Mystique ended up going undercover to help Nick Fury and Professor Xavier finally stop the Shadow King.
16 RESPECTS: MAGNETO
It is strange to see how Mystique has such a close relationship to Magneto in the movies. She is the Master of Magnetism's right hand woman in the first trilogy and starts to find herself lured to his way of thinking in the next trilogy. Why this is so hard to believe is that, in the comic books, Mystique and Magneto did not have a strong history together, mostly connected through the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, although Mystique ran the group when Magneto was not in charge.
However, in the movies, Mystique has a strong relationship with Magneto. She took a bullet for him when she leaped in the way of the mutant cure dart and lost her powers to save him. In the second trilogy, she also shared a close relationship with Magneto, although never as close as her relationship with Professor X.
15 FIGHTS: LEGION
Mystique likely had no reason to hate Legion at all before Uncanny X-Men #255. However, in that issue, the Reavers attacked the new X-Men on Muir Island and their goal was simply to annihilate the entire young team. However, Mystique's handler sent her and Freedom Force to save them -- partially as a PR move to make the team look even better.
However, what they did not expect was to have someone inside the X-Men who would betray them. That happened when Legion helped the Reavers and took the life of Destiny -- the only person that Mystique ever really cared about. Legion was under the control of the Shadow King at the time, but that didn't really matter when it came to the hatred of Mystique, who came for revenge in X-Factor #108.
14 RESPECTS: KITTY PRYDE
The relationship between Mystique and Kitty Pryde hasn't been all that significant, but the two have worked together enough to warrant a level of respect. They actually crossed paths many years ago when Shadowcat and Rachel Summers traveled back in time to 1936 in X-Men: True Friends. Here, they met the man who would become Shadow King and had a chance to eliminate Hitler. Mystique convinced then that it was not the best idea.
Many years later, it was time for Kitty to do something for Mystique when Skrulls framed her for a crime she didn't commit in X-Men #94. Rogue and Sunfire helped clear her name. Before Kitty left, while she watched over Mystique to ensure no danger came to her, she ended up rewarded with a diary of warnings left behind by Destiny.
13 FIGHTS: EMMA FROST
It should come as no surprise that Mystique and Emma Frost do not get along. Emma gets along with almost no one and when it comes to a strong-willed mutant like Mystique, the tension is palpable. The two partnered as part of the X-Men, but of course at that point Mystique was working as a double agent -- so it wasn't really amicable.
The two mutants had an even worse relationship in the world of the Ultimate Universe. On Earth-1610, Mystique was the former lover of Professor Charles Xavier. When they were in the Savage Land with Magneto, Professor X began mentoring Emma Frost and he ended up dumping Mystique for his new student -- something that turned Mystique against Xavier.
12 RESPECTS: ROGUE
Historically, Mystique has sought to take care of Rogue more than anyone else in the world. That is because Destiny and Mystique took Rogue in as a child and raised her as their daughter. While Destiny and Mystique selfishly adopted Rogue for personal gain they eventually became drawn to her with an intense case of parental love.
Mystique cared so deeply for Rogue that she actually let her join the X-Men, believing Professor Xavier could help her control her powers in a way she never could. The two have had a rocky relationship with each other over the years but they have also both been there for each other at their worst.
11 FIGHTS: ICEMAN
There are many mutants in the X-Men in which Mystique has developed an antagonistic relationship. However, one of the more surprising instances of Mystique's hatred was geared towards Bobby Drake, AKA Iceman. This relationship was nurtured when she was a member of the X-Men during the run of Mike Carey, Chris Bachalo and Humberto Ramos,.
In a climactic battle with the Marauders during X-Men (Vol. 2) #200, Mystique shot her own daughter, Rogue, in the back -- and then revealed herself to be leader of the Marauders. Iceman, who the comic book creative team established as a romantic interest to Mystique, came to Rogue's rescue. Mystique swore, if they fought again, she would end him. In X-Men: Manifest Destiny, she tried to do just that -- numerous times.
10 RESPECTS: BEAST
The X-Men movie trilogy that started with X-Men: First Class changed the stories of many main characters drastically. However, like the comics, Beast was one of the first X-Men on the team, joining up with Professor X from the beginning. But, changing things up of course, the movies made Mystique a childhood friend of Charles Xavier -- which also meant she had a strong relationship with Beast from the start of the new movie trilogy.
Over time, Beast developed a romantic attraction to Mystique and started to work on a serum that could "cure" their physical mutations but allow their mutant powers to remain intact. Mystique gave him a sample of her blood and a kiss, but when the time came, she refused the "cure" due to the mentorship of Magneto, who encouraged her embrace of mutantkind. That resulted in her leaving Beast and the X-Men to set out on her new path of extremism.
9 FIGHTS: MISTER SINISTER
Mystique originally worked with Mister Sinister in the comic books as part of the Marauders. However, it turned out that this was all a ruse on her part to try to save the life of Rogue, using what she learned in Destiny's Diaries. In New X-Men #46, the Marauders found a newborn mutant but instead of doing it for Sinister, she took him out and used the baby to cure Rogue of the Strain 88 virus.
As with everyone in Marvel, that was not the end of Mister Sinister, and he returned as strong as ever. Recently, he was back and part of the Wolverines storyline. In this case, Mystique had one goal: to bring Destiny back to life. It was Mister Sinister that kept getting in her way, cementing the pale-skinned geneticist as one of Mystique's most enduring foes.
8 RESPECTS: BLOB
While Magneto was the mutant who started the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, the mutant who led the group for the longest period of time was actually Mystique. She was even able to swing things so that the Brotherhood were heroes for a while -- or at least posed as heroes while working for the United States government as Freedom Force. While leading most forms of her group, she always had one very loyal soldier: The Blob.
The two started working together when Mystique formed the third version of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants -- the one that was the center of controversy in the Days of Future Past storyline. They worked together many times after that and were also together when Mystique tried to use MGH to bring mutants back to full-strength.
7 FIGHTS: CYCLOPS
It should be no surprise to know that Mystique and Cyclops have never been on the same side. For many years, Mystique was considered a mutant extremist while Scott was -- for better or worse -- the boy scout of the X-Men. Even when Scott became deadlier and had no problem taking lives, the two remained on opposing sides.
After Mystique betrayed the X-Men in an effort to save the life of Rogue by curing her of the Strain 88 virus, it caused even more strain. Cyclops saw what Mystique did to achieve this goal and knew she was too dangerous to live so he gave Wolverine an order to end her life -- something Logan chose not to execute in the end.
6 RESPECTS: TOAD
Mystique has had a long and interesting relationship with Toad, of all mutants. He was part of her Brotherhood of Evil Mutants team on many occasions and was always a loyal soldier. This even passed over to the movie world, where Toad and Mystique were two of the top villains to work under Magneto in the first X-Men, while in the comics he worked directly under Mystique most of the time.
Mystique even helped Toad when he led his own version of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. To see the level of respect she has for the diminutive mutant, Mystique even helped save the life of Toad by exposing herself to radiation and ended up with reptilian skin as a result -- although it also boosted her powers as well.
5 FIGHTS: DAZZLER
If there is one person who hates Mystique more than Mystique hates her, it is Dazzler. This is because, after the passing of Professor X, Mystique tried to reform the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants but the X-Men thwarted her plans. She decided on another course of action. Mystique captured Dazzler, who was working as the chief in mutant affairs for S.H.I.E.L.D. and took her place in the agency.
Mystique, posing as Dazzler, was able to use this role to cover up a number of heists and used it to create a mutant sanctuary in Madripoor, which she acquired from Hydra. She was able to use the new identity to also start to spread the access to MGH. When Dazzler escaped captivity, she was able to take her identity back and became obsessed with bringing down Mystique.
4 RESPECTS: FORGE
The relationship between Mystique and Forge is very complicated. Destiny foresaw that the two would share a very intimate relationship that would prove important for mutants in the future. However, while Mystique rejected this at first, it got even worse when Destiny sent Forge to save Mystique, knowing him leaving would result in her falling to Legion -- something for which Mystique blamed Forge.
With that said, Destiny was right. After a series of events resulted in Mystique joining X-Factor, albeit, by force, she ended up developing a romantic relationship with Forge. There are some who believe that Mystique was just using him, but the fact that Destiny foresaw this makes it seem like there was more to their relationship than just convenience. Even when they broke their relationship off, they did so with a kiss.
3 FIGHTS: GAMBIT
The poor relationship between Mystique and Gambit is mostly due to the fact that she considers Rogue to be her daughter -- and she never approved of Rogue's relationship with Gambit. Mystique never liked him at all, but she took a direct approach of bringing Gambit down when she posed as a young mutant named Foxx and Emma Frost added her to Gambit's Chevaliers Squad.
Mystique then tried to drive a wedge between Rogue and Gambit by spreading rumors and making romantic passes towards Gambit. It never worked as he saw through it but Mystique never stopped trying to get her daughter away from the Ragin' Cajun. The two did work together to try to save Rogue from the Strain 88 virus, but neither of them liked or trusted each other.
2 RESPECTS: NIGHTCRAWLER
The relationship between Mystique and Nightcrawler is a very interesting one. While Mystique adopted a young Rogue and raised her as her daughter, she was actually the biological mother of Kurt Wagner, the mutant we'd come to know as Nightcrawler. While both are blue, the demonic look for Kurt came from the genetics of his father, Azazel, a literal demon. While both of Kurt's parents appeared in the movies, it was the comic books where this relationship existed.
In the comics, Mystique became pregnant with Nightcrawler when she was married to a Baron and was forced on the run when Kurt was born looking like a demon. She ended up abandoning him as a baby. Later, in X-Men #174, Mystique respected Kurt enough to forego membership unto the X-Men when they voted on inducting her into the team.
1 FIGHTS: SABRETOOTH
When it comes to Sabretooth and Mystique, the perfect description of their relationship is... "it's complicated." The two originally met around the time of World War II when Victor was tasked with taking out a scientist in Berlin. Guess who that was. Well, the two ended up as lovers, but she ended up faking her own passing to get away from him -- not before she ended up pregnant with their son, Graydon Creed, a man who (naturally) grew into a villain hellbent on the extermination of mutants.
The two have been teammates since, both on teams serving the forces of good and on teams serving the forces of not-so-good. In the pages of X-Factor, Sabretooth joined the team while Mystique was working with them as a sleeper agent. Later, in the pages of both X-Men (Vol. 2) and Wolverines, they were teammates once again. Apparently, they like working together.