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Top Five Most Iconic Magneto Covers

Here are my picks for the top five most iconic covers featuring Magneto (with iconic being determined by what covers are most established and most recognized when it comes to Magneto, with a preference towards covers that are homaged a lot). This is not a BEST cover list and due to the very nature of icons, very few (if any) recent covers will be on the list. A notable exception to the rules is that I don’t count covers from a character’s first appearance (which isn’t applicable to all characters, of course, just those who appeared on the cover of the comic they debuted in), as those tend to be automatically iconic so they’re boring. Here‘s a list of all characters featured so far.


First off, while I’m exempting first appearance covers from the countdown, it’s only fair, I suppose, to share them here before the countdown begins, so here is the first cover appearance of Magneto from his debut story, X-Men #1…

Artists: Jack Kirby and likely Paul Reinman

And on that note, another “disqualified” cover is X-Men #104, which is a direct homage of #1…

Artist: Dave Cockrum

Now on to the list!

5. Artists: John Romita, Jr. and Dan Green

The readers have spoken, and they remembered this notable 80s cover for the X-Men’s 200th issue!

It is not a particularly GOOD cover, but it was a notable one, so I have no problem with this one being on the list.

4. Artists: Dave Cockrum and Joe Rubinstein

One of the best representations of the seemingly eternal struggle between the X-Men and Magneto, with a good shot of the casualties that result from said battles.

3. Artists: Jim Lee and Scott Williams

Like it or not, Lee’s Magneto cover to X-Men #1 (I posted the gatefold version of the cover, which you can click on to enlarge) is one of the most famous Magneto drawings period, due to the hype of the comic and the proliferation of copies of X-Men #1 out there (also, note that this comic is almost TWENTY YEARS old!).

2. Artists: Jack Kirby and George Roussos

It’s hard to beat such an iconic shot of Magneto, especially with the introduction of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants along for the rise..

1. Artists: George Perez and Bob Layton

But I think Perez does so with this cover, which is likely the most memorable Magneto cover of all time (except for perhaps the 1963 X-Men #1 cover).


What what?

the number one cover looks like wolverine’s screen test for the movie Idle Hands.

Disqualified for it’s less-than-stellar costume?


(this might just be my love for the various Trials of Magneto speaking)

I’ll accept the first three–if only because I can’t remember the universe of Magneto covers. I’m not at all sure about #4-5. As alternatives, what about these?




Tijmen, I was also shocked to not see that on there anywhere. I think it’s the most iconic Magneto cover.

Funny thing is, that on 4 of those 7 Covers shown it’s Cyclops firing his blast to Magneto, who blocks it.

I gotta admit that although I have never owned or read X-Men 200 that that is the cover I thought of when I saw that Magneto was today’s star. And I don’t like anything about the cover. I am surprised that #112 was #1. To me that story was the height of the entire run. To an 11 year old kid who believed anything could still happen in comics (the good guys could lose, the dead stay dead), that story was absolutely mind-blowing.

Also, who inked George Perez on that cover? It doesn’t look like his normal work. Did Cockrum ink him?

I also thought of X-Men #200 before I looked below the fold. Nothing wrong with the ones you picked, but I wouldn’t have thought of #63, Neal Adams or not.

I read somewhere that Lee’s X-Men #1 was intended to be a homage to the original X-Men #1, and I suppose I could see that, but it’s certainly not as direct of a homage as #104 is.

I guess I’m just not all that much of an X-Man fan because my favourite Magneto cover is this Buscema image for Avengers 49: http://www.comics.org/coverview.lasso?id=21659&zoom=4 .

I could also see Uncanny X-Men #200 as a contender for #5.

The last five covers “cut down” to make the list were Uncanny #200, Avengers #11..0? 111? 112? I forget which number, the Cockrum cover with Magneto and Professor X (where the redemption of Magneto began) plus the two Buscema covers (one for X-Men, one for Avengers).

In fact, tell y’all what – I’ll have a poll to let you people pick #5.

Like I said, #5 was a tough call.

“Also, who inked George Perez on that cover? It doesn’t look like his normal work. Did Cockrum ink him?”

It was Bob Layton.

I have to add my vote for Uncanny X-Men 200, that was the one I thought of (well, that and Jim Lee’s X-Men #1). Would have definitely changed that one for #5.

Not much in the way of modern fare on these Top 5s, are there? I loved the cover to X-Men #-1, the “Flashback” issue from the late 90s. It’s a very simple story, but a pretty good one as far as Magneto is concerned given the time period in which it was published.

Not much in the way of modern fare on these Top 5s, are there?

That’s the problem with iconic – it almost always is going to correspond with “old,” but not ALWAYS! There are some major “modern” covers – heck, even today there’s a cover from the 1990s!

all good choices can see why you had such a hard choice and the poll though would have switched number one with number 2 for it shows magnetoe with his soliders the brotherhood. plus even Perez shuold be under the king jack.

Omar Karindu, with the power of SUPER-hypocrisy!

September 9, 2009 at 6:58 am

Don’t ask me why, but Captain America #367 is always in my mental list of iconic Magneto covers.

Man, I want to read that Fantastic Four issue someone posted the cover of.

Omar, good one! A lot of people remember the Magneto/Skull fight as a great story.

Gotta say, I think #2 is the most iconic one.

X-Men #200 is the most iconic for me, but then again, that was around the time I “discovered” the X-Men comics and was one of the first covers I ever saw.

I have to second Omar’s nomination of Cap #367. Also, I know this is fairly new school, but I find the AoA version of Mags to be very iconic, with Astonishing X-Men (v1) #1 http://i7.tinypic.com/4opx8nm.jpg to be his most iconic cover in the AoA costume.

On the question X-Men #63 vs. X-Men #200:

The definition of iconic that I have been using is a graphical representation of the traditional style in which the character has been used. Magneto is primarily a charismatic terrorist. He is appeals to young mutants, because he offers a way of addressing their grievances. The X-Men want to integrate with the outside world and work to see Magneto as an impediment to mutual understanding.

Cover #3 and #4 follow the pattern laid down by Kirby of showing the X-Men in violent opposition to Magneto. They are nice selections, because they present contrasting styles from very different eras of the Claremont X-Men. So, conflict is pretty well represented.

X-Men #63 is really a “Magneto as recruiter” cover. The shadowy figure is Lorna Dane, who is about join up with Magneto. That makes it a pretty iconic cover. Also, Adams is doing the “rounded machinery” thing in this panel. That is a visual that I pretty strongly associate with the X-Men in general. For example, Bryan Singer used it a lot in his X-Men films.

X-Men #200 shows two different groups of mutants fighting over a shackled Magneto. Like I said, the “Versus” cover motif is pretty well represented on this list. I guess you could argue that X-Men #200 shows the dispute as being over Magneto as a symbol. It demonstrates that he has adherents who are willing to fight for him. However, that is exactly the angle that #63 is illustrating.

I am going to cast my vote for X-Men #63. It has more classic X-Men elements.

While it hasn’t had time to become iconic one of the best covers for the character ever was Magneto Testament #1.


Dean it was Loreli in that machine in X-Men #63. The ‘Devil Had A Daughter’ storyline with Lorna was X-Men #49 thru #52.


Damn. I just realised that Jim Lee’s XMEN #1 cover is actually a subtle “modern” homage to Kirby’s XMEN #1 cover. It’s almost Oulipian!

Maybe it is not very iconic, but I find Xmen vol2 #41 a very powerful cover. (This is the end of Legion Quest saga, which leads to AoA). I have really good memories of that cover because that is the time I really got into Xmen comics.

Just wanted people to remember that cover, because I find it great.

Omar Karindu, with the power of SUPER-hypocrisy!

September 9, 2009 at 1:10 pm

X-Men #63 is really a “Magneto as recruiter” cover. The shadowy figure is Lorna Dane, who is about join up with Magneto.

This is completely misinformed; Neal Adams neither designed nor pencilled Lorna Dane’s first appearances. The cover of #63 if from the one arc in which Adams pencilled Magneto, one introducing the Savage Land Mutates. The mysterious character in the glass enclosure is Lorelei, not Lorna Dane.

Lorna was never trated as a “mystery character.” Her first cover appearance was not shadowed, but was a memorable Jim Steranko effort captioned “Queen of the Evil Mutants.”

@ Omar:

I read these issues in re-prints with, so pardon my confusion.

I agree with the AoA Magneto cover being one of the best ever.
I’m glad you put UXM200 on the list, because before I clicked to read more, that was the only one I could think of.
In fact, even after seeing your OTHER choices for 1-4, it’s STILL the only one I can think of, with Jim Lee’s being a second thought…

Well, first off, I’m confused. Uncanny X-Men 200 comes in at #5, yet there are a bunch of comments wondering why it isn’t listed. I don’t know that I’d really call it iconic, considering that he’s not even in his regular outfit.

Sadly, none of these images can hold a candle to the impact of the final panel of X-Men (1st series) #017.

After recovering from the menace of the Sentinels, the X-Men return to the mansion, where, one-by-one, they are defeated by an unknown assailant. (Well, except for Iceman who’s in the hospital) They are then launched into the atmosphere in an airtight sphere, all the better to suffocate. Warren’s parents come to the door of the mansion where they are surprised by the man that greets them. “Who are you?”

“I? I am power” (Turn the page……)

“Men call me….Magneto”

If you were reading this fresh off the rack in 1966, you were stunned, and in for a long wait for part 2.

Best Magneto moment EVER.


I think that X-men 104 was the 1st issue I ever bought. And on the other hand, 200 was probably the last. Damn, that JR jr art was UG-LY!

Magneto must’ve been stuck with some really shit covers over the years if these are the most iconic.

I would make #2 number #1. Would I do so because it is Kirby or because it is the coolest and most iconic. I’m going with all of the above.

Really diggin’ the Green “Scarlet” Witch from cover # 2 there.

What about the one where he’s pullin’ out Wolverines bones? That’s one of the most often used.

I can’t believe I didn’t notice that until MarkAndrew pointed it out! So what’s the deal? Was that just a colouring error on the cover only, or was she the Green Witch in that issue?

What about the one where he’s pullin’ out Wolverines bones? That’s one of the most often used.

The panel, yes, the cover, not so much.

I’ll pick Jim Lee’s X-Men #2 cover over issue #1, yeah the gatefold is nice, but that shot of Magneto with the broken X-men ‘statues’ is simply amazing.

My most iconic is Jim Lee’s Magnet + Rogue in the Savage Land, It’s the first one that popped in my mind. But I can see why it didn’t make the list.

yeah, as huge as X-men #1 was (and i love the other 3 parts of it) I always thought the magneto image was a little “off”, maybe because he’s not really engaging the other covers, he’s facing the reader…

Magneto and Rouge in the savage land would be my iconic Jim Lee Magneto too.

I really want some one to ask Jim Lee about his cover for X-Men 1 and what happened to Rogue!

Just look at her in perspective to Colossus. It seems like he drew her to be in the back round but had to be moved down to incorporate the X-MEN logo.

I want some one to ask Jim Lee about Rogue on the cover of X-Men 1 and why she is sized so small. I can only assume it was do to making room for the logo but I’m still curious about it.

Is this a very important issue for you, Adam, to mention it twice within an hour? :)

My Internet Explorer was having some fun with me apparently. Might as well throw in some content for good measure, so here are some personal favs.

Scarlet Witch – Avengers 234
Vision – Avengers 254
Kitty Pryde – Uncanny X-Men 179
Magneto – X-Men 41

Anything from Jim Lee would be on my number one list. Especially where Magneto is concerned, If I were to pick five iconic covers from Magneto though, I would likely include adjectiveless X-Men 25. That cover with Magneto removing the adamantium from Wolverine is classic! Not to mention the story was probably one of the best stories in that time period. If I had to pick one to remove in it’s place (and believe me it’s no easy choice) it would be X-Men 150. As great as that issue was it was never anything of any major significance to me.

Shout outs to Andy Kubert on that one by the way!

Ma favorite is Jim Lee’s cover, X-Men #1. Well, I was 18 at that time, and I loved Lee’s art so much, I wanted to be like the girls, and I had a crush on nearly every men he drawed (including Magneto). I’ve been reading the X-Men since I’m 11, but the Jim Lee era really made a difference.

Avengers 110 drawn by the criminally underrated Don Heck.

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