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Top Five Lies/Deceptions by Professor X

Top Five Month (check here to see an archive of all the top five lists ever featured) continues with a look at the founder of the X-Men who, for being such a good guy, seems to like to lie and deceive (all in the name of altruism, I suppose) constantly!

Here are his top five lies/deceptions…

Enjoy!

NOTE: Professor Xavier did not know actively know about the existence of Cassandra Nova until she introduced herself in New X-Men. Jean Grey entered his mind and discovered that Xavier had some vestigial memories of killing Nova in the womb, but obviously he would not remember that stuff. Just his parents perhaps letting him know that he had a twin sister who died in the womb. So he did not keep her existence a secret from anyone so she is not on this list.

HONORABLE MENTIONS

Keeping Cerebro a secret…for some reason

This one is really weird because I don’t really see what Xavier’s point is here – why keep Cerebro a secret from the rest of the X-Men? Especially because he reveals the secret, like, five issues later!!! So odd.

Making the X-Men think he lost his powers just to see what they would do

Years before Kitty Pryde made it explicit, man, Professor X was a jerk sometimes. Like here, the endings of X-Men #4 and X-Men #5.

Letting Wolverine attempt to assassinate him because he knew he could break Wolverine’s conditioning and then have him be a weapon for Xavier, instead.

So yeah, apparently, Wolverine and Xavier met before they “officially” met. Wolverine was brainwashed into killing Xavier, and Xavier stopped him and used his own mental powers to “turn” Wolverine. Why? Because Xavier figured he could use an assassin of his own.

Later in the issue, we see Xavier completing his own brainwashing so that Wolverine will later want to join the X-Men when Xavier approaches him in Giant-Size X-Men #1. Messed up, Charlie!!!

Keeping the Danger Room’s sentience a secret

In Astonishing X-Men #7-12, the X-Men find themselves in a fight against the Danger Room itself. Honestly, while at the time I did not think it was a good idea by writer Joss Whedon, looking back at it nearly ten years later, I REALLY don’t think this was a good idea. But anyhow, in Astonishing X-Men #12 we learn that Professor X knew about the Danger Room’s sentience for some time now…

So compounding the original not-so-great idea of making the Danger Room sentient, Whedon double downed and also made Xavier seem, well, really jerky.

The only reason this one did not make the top five is that a few years later, in X-Men Legacy #223, Mike Carey did his best to redeem Xavier’s actions…

I think Carey did a nice enough job that I am keeping this one off of the top five.

5. Not letting Cyclops and Havok know that they had a brother

One of the lesser revelations of X-Men: Deadly Genesis was that Xavier knew that one of Moira MacTaggert’s proto-X-Men was the brother of his own X-Men, Cyclops and Havok, and just chose not to tell them for whatever reason.

4. Being a member of the Illuminati

Pretty much everyone in the Illuminati was being deceitful to their people. Xavier, though, particularly stands out because the world hated and feared mutants and he didn’t seem to use the powers of the Illuminati to really help out that much, did he? What was he DOING, then, as a member of the Illuminati? So he’s part of this super-powerful hidden group and he never bothered to actually help out the mutant cause?

3. Faking his own death and not telling all but one of his students

I mean, I guess it makes sense, but it’s still a pretty messed up lie just to get time to prepare. Perhaps just tell your students, “Hey, no one bother me for awhile please.”

2. Wiping the memory of Cyclops of the team of X-Men who died between the original X-Men and the All-New, All-Different X-Men.

This is some really messed up stuff – wiping Cyclops’ memories of seeing a replacement team of X-Men killed (including his own brother) and then going out and recruiting a NEW team of X-Men without letting them know that he already sent another team to save the original X-Men and that they had all been killed!!! What the hell, Xavier?!?

1. Saying that the X-Men weren’t named after him

This one is tops because it is so blatant and really, if you can’t tell the truth about something so simple like this, how can you EVER be trusted?

Can you think of other notable lies by Xavier? Any that you think should make the top five? Let me know!

80 Comments

You’ll notice that the really jerky things he’s done, except for the faking his own death, are events inserted into his back story by modern writers. This is why there should be a moratorium on going back and “revealing” hidden things characters did in the past. Prior to a 20 years ago, Xavier was kind of an egotist but not outright evil. Starting with, I think, what he did to Amelia Voght, writers have tried really hard to make him almost villainous. It’s annoying.

Aargh! I’m not one to usually complain about retcons, but GOOD LORD have they made Charlie out to be an all-encompassing asshole in the last few years! Why can’t the Ultimate version be the bastard?!

Also, I hate Vulcan for the same reasons I hate Sentry…needless, annoying, and with him came about a half-dozen retcons that served NOBODY but the writer of the story at the time. Did the third Summers brother mystery REALLY need to be solved? Hadn’t we all moved past that? GAH!!! Gah, I say!

I suppose, though, that as you pointed-out…Xavier has always been a bit of a dick, hasn’t he? The brain-washing stuff just doesn’t sit well with me, and because it’s all shoehorned in to various other characters’ pasts makes it worse.

I feel like Onslaught ought to be on the list somehow, given the effect it had on Marvel U.

How about how Chuck knew that the Danger Room was a living entity but decided to enslave it so he could train his X-Men?

Xavier was indeed always something of a jerk, true, but indeed this development is just bad. Niles Caulder did this already, no need to copy.

To be fair regarding the Wolverine brainwashing, Logan had already had his mind controlled dozens of times by Romulus, and was a mental wreck. Charles couldn’t undo the damage, so instead he wiped Logan’s memories and allowed him a fresh start as a superhero. At the end of the story arc, Logan actually thanked Charles for giving him the chance to live a hero’s life.

You also forgot, ” I do not want to hit that ” Re: underaged Jean Grey :P

How about how Chuck knew that the Danger Room was a living entity but decided to enslave it so he could train his X-Men?

Yeah, I was thinking about that one too. But by the time that was revealed, the X-Men knew better than to be surprised by any screwed-up thing the Prof did.

ditto what Dru said, also the Xavier Protocols

Probably the best list to date, IMO, Brian.

How about Prof. X disguising himself as Dr. Niles Caulder from 1988-1991?

Wow, look at all these additional lies not on the list…Danger, the Xavier Protocols, Amelia Voght…how about lying to the team about when he first met Jean, and then having her keep her telepathy a secret?

I know a lot of these are retcons, but dang, the Prof gives “Superdickery” a run for its money.

Not to mention keeping Muir Island, and Moira’s true job, a secret from the team for many issues. Geez, the longer I think about it, the more I think of.

This list is awesome. Even without the brilliant choice for number one, it would be awesome, though the number one lie is pretty inspired (and funny).

As Brian says, it’s almost more remarkable to consider what isn’t on the list. e.g. psychically imposing short-term memory-loss on Spider-Man in the Secret Wars, solely so that he could pursue his plan to take the X-Men and ditch the other heroes for Magneto which was necessary because… I don’t know?

Kids’ stuff! Doesn’t even rate as an honorable mention! Charlie you’re a class act.

Fantastic list.

I had no idea that after Morrison left, Marvel had responded by turning X-MEN into a knock-off of his DOOM PATROL.

Look…at least he isn’t racist.

Well, now, what a complete and utter manipulative bastard, wasn’t he.
Nearly as bad as Magneto, eh?

Keeping in mind that I haven’t read most of the stories surrounding him. ;-)

No mention of faking his death and letting the Changeling die in his place? I thought that would be #1

HaHaHa jjc….no he left that to Cyclops….and in his “wise” thinking, that got busloads of non-powered children blown up!

Danger, X-Protocols, Onslaught, Amelia are all pretty bad… then there’s the whole attacking Cassandra Nova in the womb thing (that was a Morrison idea, so for all you M lovers he isn’t absolved on this one)

Throw in Legion and Gabrielle Haller, and Prof. X is approaching 40′s-50′s Superman and Frank Miller’s Batman in terms of being a “role model” here…

No mention of faking his death and letting the Changeling die in his place? I thought that would be #1

But no, it’s #3!

I haven’t been reading X-Men for over a decade, and now you tell me Xavier has become The Chief from Doom Patrol????

Xavier didn’t even know about his twin (same with not knowing that Heller was pregnant), so I can’t really count those as lies/deceptions. And when did he lie/deceive with Amelia? He almost mind-controlled her, but he did not go through with it, right?

I guess you could say he didn’t tell the X-Men about his old girlfriend, but that seems like a bit of a stretch as a “deception.”

Brian I’ll give you the womb thing….but the Haller and Legion treatment borders on deadbeat dad land… and it has bled into other arenas (X-Men Evolution, and a x- novel)

Just proof that he’s bordering on anti-hero status…

Mind you, Professor X was always eerily similar to Niles Caulder, even since their first appearances at around the same time.

Xavier was indeed always something of a jerk, true, but indeed this development is just bad. Niles Caulder did this already, no need to copy.

Yeah, very good point. I have to agree with the sentiment. It was shocking and dramatic and a total punch in the gut when Grant Morrison did it first with Niles Caulder. That was probably one of the very few “everything you know is a lie” retcons in superhero comic books that really worked. With Xavier, every time they have one of these “shocking” revelations about his past lies & manipulations, I just feel like yawning and mumbling “Oh, they’re throwing Charlie under the bus again? Whatever.”

I haven’t read the issues where/when #2 took place. Where can I find that?

#2 and #5 are both part of the mini-series, X-Men: Deadly Genesis, which is collected in a trade.

Condoning Jean’s mind wipe of Kitty’s parents in the run-up to Jean becoming Dark Phoenix. But then, no one seemed to really mind that…including Kitty.

Ohh, this is a good top five. Although I do think the whole “Danger” thing should be on here. That made him look like a prize douche.

Professor X has a whole cemetery in his closet.

How about him secretly being in love with Jean back when she was just a teenager and he was twice her age? Oh, silly Professor. We can excuse every other guy in the school for being infatuated by her, but you’ve -known- women….

I’ve noticed that there are no Chris Claremont scenes anywhere in the article. Nice to see that there is at least some X-Men related sins that people don’t blame good ol’ Chris for.

I guess Xavier’s biggest deception is that he is a fundementally decent person who knows what he’s doing. I suppose he could be one or the other, but clearly not both.
I thought about him lying to everyone and saying that Moira was a housekeeper he’d just hired– Claremont was responsible for that one. That lie was simply pointless.

Xavier fits the profile of the pathological liar and paranoid, hiding stuff big and small from his associates even when there is no point to it.

And yes, Claremont was responsible for that relatively harmless one. But the Moira scene isn’t in the article.

Xavier lied to the New Mutants and let them think Karma was dead when in reality she was enslaved by the Shadow King. That really belongs on the list.

He didn’t tell anyone that he had a kid with Gabrielle Haller. That was a Claremont one.

Great list, Brian.

Paty, wife of the late great Dave Cockrum, once told Chris Claremont that she felt Xavier really was a criminal, because he was lying to all the parents of his first class of students, promising that they would be getting a top notch education. Instead, he was taking a bunch of teenagers, forming them into a covert strikeforce, and training them to go out and fight dangerous super-powered criminals. Magneto, for all his sins, at least was not hiding behind the facade of the benign, kindly human educator, and was totally up front that his Mutant Brotherhood was a terrorist group.

Thinking about it, Paty did have a very valid point. I mean, I know it was the early 1960s, and Xavier’s actions weren’t too many years removed from Batman taking on Robin, a 13 year old orphan, to be his vigilante partner fighting against gangsters, mad scientists, and psychotic mass murderers. But, yeah, that’s one aspect of the X-Men that has not aged at all well. Which is probably at least partially the root of so many current writers coming up with these new retcons concerning Xavier’s other lies & deceptions. If he’s going to put teenagers repeatedly in harms way, lying through his teeth about it to his parents, and engaging in the wiping/altering of people’s memories at the drop of a hat, well, what else was Xavier capable of? A lot of writers obviously saw a very slippery slope to his behavior.

I think the biggest and most consistent ones is this whole BS notion that he respects the boundaries of other people’s minds and would never mindscan or influence (brainwash) someone without their permission, when in fact he does so whenever he happens to feel like it and decides on his own that it’s actually “important” enough… I think Bendis called it correctly in one of the Illuminati issues when he states to the group “That’s not what I do” and Namor or Stark counters with “That’s *exactly* what you do…”

Case in point, when reflecting on decades of murder and attempted world domination by his former best friend, during which he could have stopped him just by thinking it the second Magneto took his helmet off, deciding after three decades or so that actually he’s fine with it and just shutting down his mind completely, leaving him for dead as a human vegetable on a crashing, burning space station falling out of orbit.

Or at the end of the Claremont era in the first couple of issues of Adjectiveless X-Men, Magneto learns that he and Moira had either concealed or deliberately planned the series of subtle changes in his genetic makeup that occured while he was”youthed” in the 70s and in Moira’s care, to which Magneto himself attributes his personality and lack of megalomania to in subsqeuent years.

I think in the event, it was determined to be a nature vs nurture side effect to growing up a second time without the traumatic childhood but again, the fact that neither one bothered to tell him, despite noticing at the time did not look at all good when he inevitably found out years later.

He’s been shown so consistently to have lied just to make his own life easier, I’m beginning to doubt he’s even genuinely confined to that chair.

The guy reeks of pure goldbricker.

I now can’t look at Sir Patrick the same way again.

John, Xavier didn’t know that he had a kid with Gabrielle until shortly before he told the New Mutants. He didn’t tell anyone he had a relationship with Gabrielle until it became relevant but I don’t why he should have to.

Spikey_p, Xavier DIDN’T know what Moira did to Magneto. The readers were shown a scene where Xavier wonders what Moira did, but Magneto wasn’t present for that scene, so he erroneously thought Xavier was in on it.

For what it’s worth, I wrote a similar blog post on this subject (though mine was specifically moments where Xavier was a jerk). Read it here if you’re so inclined.

In addition to a couple moments Brian discusses here, I’d also add the Gabriel Haller/Legion situation, not so much his not knowing about Legion (as Haller never told me) but how, after he found out, he promised to be there for his son but pretty much wasn’t, leading to Legion getting possessed by Shadow King and later, destroying reality and creating the Age of Apocalypse, specifically because Xavier wasn’t spending enough time with him.

Then, there’s the time he left the school and the X-men in the hands of Magneto so he could travel space with his girlfriend.

And it’s worth mentioning the fact that, especially in the Silver Age, there wasn’t a memory around that Xavier wouldn’t alter.

Charles really is an asshole. Most of the interesting X-Men are, of course, but he even gives Scott, Emma, and Logan a run for their money.

Once again, Kitty nailed it perfectly.

The over-the-top one is the Deadly Genesis story, which I think was really unfortunate. Brubaker’s a talented writer but he had no business coming onto X-Men just to completely turn Xavier into an asshole. I feel like Mike Carey did a pretty good job with redeeming the character in X-Men: Legacy, but I dunno, it seems like an awful lot of X-Men writers over the years have had some serious daddy issues to make Charlie so screwed up.

To be fair – Claremont DID try to justify Xavier’s refusal to return to Earth. He threw in some lines about how the Starjammer was damaged and they need Xavier’s mental powers to survive their encounters with Deathbird’s hunters. I’m not saying it wasn’t a lame excuse on Claremont’s part but he did make it a choice between the lesser of two evils.

@Michael: Yeah, Claremont did setup a justification. I just seem to recall a point where Xavier could have come back to Earth, but chose not to.

But I could be remembering it wrong.

Yeah, but my point was Claremont tried to make the choice morally grey. If it’s a choice between boinking Lilandra and coming back to the X-Men, then Xavier’s a jerk if he chooses boinking Lilandra. But if it’s a choice between helping to stop Deathbird and coming back to the X-Men, then Charles is in a no-win situation.

@Michael: No, you’re right, Claremont did try to make it morally gray at the time, and he succeeded.

I just seem to recall a later time (maybe around when Xavier bumped into the New Mutants in outer space) where Deathbird was defeated and it was no longer a case of “return to the X-Men or stop Deathbird” and more a choice of “return to X-Men or stay in space with my space girlfriend”.

But, again, I could easily be remembering that wrong.

I just got done reading the Xavier issues of X-Men: Legacy, and wow. That was like two whole years of trying to redeem Xavier for all the shitty things he supposedly did.

The justification for the Danger Room decision was particularly hilarious, since it was basically “Yeah, I was still trying to figure out how to get you out when you went nutso on us.”

I think the Danger storyline is particularly interesting seeing as it’s one of the classic tropes in fiction based on social conflict that a recently oppressed minority will, shortly after gaining hard won acceptance and a voice, begin aggressively persecuting an even newer emergent group. As X-Men has always been a parallel development first of civil rights in the 60s and then later gay rights with the Legacy virus thread running through the 90s, it shows both Xavier and Magneto (ostensibly two sides of the same coin) up as hypocrites again.

Just as settled decendants of immigrant groups persecute and mistrust in coming new groups, Charles sees the development of Danger’s AI on Earth as a threat so dangerous to all he had accomplished, he kept it chained, blinded and mute for years, terrified that it could break free and try to take his people’s sh*t. So he enslaves it and goes all Gangs of New York to make it see new, exotic, threatening and terrifying.

At least Magneto only imprisoned and enslaved fellow mutants when their powers served to further his cause.

Given that Magneto was essentially good but misguided in his intentions for all of the 80s and most of the 90s, and again recently post-House of M and only *really* sought to overthrow the human race according to his own schemings during the 60s and early 70s, yet Xavier seemed to be constantly doing this kind of stuff (and still does), it would be interesting to see their crimes, mistakes and sets unintended consquences side by side.

As far as unintended consquences go, Xavier’s creation of Onslaught and the outcome what resulted from that must surely take the cake, whereas Magneto’s scorecard in recent years depends very much on whether you think he was ever Xorn.

Personally, I think he doesn’t deserve the blame for that one, even though I do believe it was really physically him doing those things – I blame the Kick/Sublime.

That’s a nice theory- unfortunately there’s not much support for it in the story. Joss’s “logic” was that Xavier felt the Danger Room was needed to train his students- because, after all, having to borrow the Avengers’ training facilities is much worse than enslaving a sentient being. And the X-teams HAVE befriended other AIs without Xavier complaining. There really is no good reason for Xavier’s actions.

I’ve noticed that there are no Chris Claremont scenes anywhere in the article. Nice to see that there is at least some X-Men related sins that people don’t blame good ol’ Chris for.

Actually, I do kind of blame Claremont for this, because in many interviews he’s made the point that Charles Xavier is a jerk and a manipulator and completely ruthless. I think that penetrated the consciousness of everyone who’s come on the book since.

Why “blame” Claremont, wouldn’t it be more appropriate to “credit” him instead? Shady Professor X is more interesting than Saint Xavier after all.

@Teebore I just seem to recall a later time maybe around when Xavier bumped into the New Mutants in outer space)

Another Xavier classic, I don’t think Deathbird was stopped at the time but Xavier very kindly forces Magik to take the New Mutants home when she really doesn’t want to.

She’s free of her evil side for the first time ever and going back to Limbo would restore it. Of course the most powerful psychic on earth does this nice action by ordering Karma to take over Magiks mind rather than doing the deed himself.

He does indeed choose not to go back with them even though he’s found out about the Mutant Massacre and believes the original X-Men are hunting down mutants, classy.

Perhaps he was still recovering from that time the evil side of his personality destroyed whole plants in the Microverse? I not read the relevant issues but I’m told Tessa/Sage turned out to be his agent in the Hellfire Club, if that’s true that’s pretty manipulative considering how much trouble they cause the X-Men that he must have known was coming.

Oh, wait, I forget… was it revealed that Xavier lied to Rogue that he’d try to find a cure to her power-related problems, and in fact he knew there was no cure, and just told her that BS so she’d become an X-Man, rather than returning to Mystique’s Mutant Brotherhood and becoming an enemy again?

@Michael I think the point with Joss’ back story about Danger was thank circa 1991, Xavier, Beast and Forge had, when rebuilding the mansion and the Danger Room circa 1991 incorporated either borrowed or cribbed Shi’aar tech into the place whereas previously all the tech was strictly terrestrial. The Danger storyline makes a big thing of Danger using the holodeck-style hard light technology that did not feature prior to the Jim Lee era… pre-late 80s, Danger Room training typically incorporated missiles, flamethrowers and hydraolic presses and the like but the threats were all physical rather than hard light or holographic and things floated mid-air thanks to retro-rockets or VTOL jets rather than anti-gravity.

It’s been rightly pointed out that while the rest of the Marvel cast have contact with Kree, Skrull and all other manner of alien races, the X-men and the Shi’aar generally interact on a fairly exclusive basis. Thus, while groups like the Avengers will have access to funding from Stark’s millions, the UN or corporate sponsorship, the X-Men are largely bankrolled by Xavier and Warren. Nevertheless, with geniuses like Forge on the team and access to superior Shi’aar tech, they can outshine those achievements, so long as they keep it to themselves in the sub-basement, Batman style. Thus, in Fatal Attractions, Xavier sports a cyberneticn Shi’aar body cast that allows him to walk, as well as an orbital site to site teleporter that allows them to infiltrate Asteroid M undetected.

There is certainly a line in Joss’ story to the effect that in reality, almost all Shi’aar technology is alive but that Xavier never realised that until right after he had incorporated it into the new Danger Room and switched it on, thereby granting it self-awareness. Thus Xavier’s “Oh sh*t!” moment in this instance comes after the fact when he realises what he has done and the tragic irony of exploiting an emergent life-form to bring about his dream.

To mix IT and sociological metaphors (in a way that is actually appropriate for once in this case), Xavier realised with horror that he was inadvertently exploiting Danger without even realising it, an act that was a byproduct of the system they were both operating within and became scared and overwhelmed with the realisation. His work to improve the lot for his own small, persecuted people has somehow resulted in oppression of an even newer and less numerous group of people, who are suffering because of it. Realising he is in way over his head and with not the first idea how to rectify the situation without suffering reprisals, he goes into total self-denial, puts his fingers in his ears and hangs his hope for redemption on no-one else ever finding out, rather than admitting that he screwed up and got scared what might happen when the truth came out.

Xavier fully expected Danger to come for him and to kill him when it got free and certainly believed that he would deserve no less punishment for prolonging his agony. Everyone but Emma was taken aback somewhat when Danger wouldn’t or couldn’t move past scaring the wits out of him, rather than taking actual vengence. In my mind, the X-Men themselves fear Danger because he is the unknown and so assume the worst of him. Xavier thinks he knows Danger and in his mind accepts that he deserves to have Danger do to him it’s worst after his transgressions. Only Emma and Danger know that Danger is actually a person, albeit an artificial one.

In my mind, this story is built on the notion that Charles sees himself as Martin Luther King to all mutants (with Magneto as the likes of Malcolm X). The facts of Danger’s existance and escape both cast him more in the mould of George Wallace in the 60s, with his mistrust and fear of Danger being the same as that of Wallace’s towards the idea of an angry black man loose with a knife in his neighbourhood at midnight circa 1964.

Joss is good with this, his media refelects the notion that acceptance grows by increments, so you can show evil vampires, followed by a vampire with a soul who therefor becomes good, to a vampire without a soul who does good through being forced not to be bad, to the same vampire choosing to do good things and then to become good again by choice and sacrifice. There is a period in Buffy history wherein the vampire without a soul doing good by choice is more likeable and heroic than the ensouled vampire forced to do good thing by being burdened with a conscience… Real sliding morality scale.

Bit off topic, bu you get the point

@Brian, as far as the attempted murder of Cassandra Nova in the womb goes, Charles was certainly aware that he had done it, even if was not consciously, as he was able to explain to Jean and Emma when they entered his subconscious mind. Even though consciously, he was almost certainly unaware of the event, some part of his mind remembered doing it and kept the secret his entire adult life.

That HAS to be the top of all the deceptions, in that case…

The holodeck technology was first seen in 1982- Scott used it to defeat the X-Men to save Maddie in issue 175, to cite just one example.
As for when Xavier first noticed- there’s a lot of controversy about that. Joss apparently intended for Danger to have been sentient since 1982 but that’s impossible since Bastion stole the Danger Room tech during Zero Tolerance.
And later writers clarified that no, “normal” Sh’iar technology isn’t alive.

- Keeping Cassandra Nova a secret
- The Danger Room fiasco

It seems to me that inserting all these shady actions into Xavier’s past after the fact are really to try to solve story telling obstacles:

1. His psychic abilities are so strong that it makes few of the X-Men’s adversaries are that formidable as well as making the involvement of most of the X-Men in confronting them unnecessary.

2. When he’s portrayed as a saintly crusader, he’s kind of bland.

Most of these add-on’s seem designed to create distance and distrust between Xavier and the X-Men in order to take him somewhat off the board and give the others more room.

I didn’t know about most of this stuff. I haven’t been all that regular an X-Men reader over the last 20 years. Mostly just Claremont’s brief return to X-Men 5-10 years back, Morrison’s New X-Men, Whedon’s Astonishing X-Men, and Carey’s X-Men: Legacy.

I really liked what Carey was doing. For me, it struck the right balance between keeping some distance from the X-Men so that they had room to shine while allowing him to still be basically a good guy.

THANK YOU! Thank you Brian for doing this list. I’ve been saying Xavier is douchemayor for years.

One of my personal favorites is Uncanny X-Men 375. Prof. X “suspects” one of the X-Men is a skrull infiltrator, so he does a mass mind halucination where he makes all the X-Men either kill their teammates and/or bear witness to their friends dying (which would probably have a lasting psychological truama for everyone involved). Then at the end, Beast calls down from where he and Moira were doing an autopsy on the deceased Logab and let’s everyone know Logan was the skrull. To which Xavier responds ‘…as I suspected all along’ (or something similar, I’m paraphrasing). So rather than waiting 90 minutes or so for Hank to confirm his suspicions, he thought it would be the perfect opportunity to mindf–k all of his students. You stay classy, Chuck.

i would also ad Xavier having Sage infiltrate the hell fire club as Tessa and not reveal till years later she was working for him. proving that xavier is one of the mu biggest dicks. not to mention also thinking it was a good idea to have saber tooth in the mansion. to try and reprogram him to not be so pycho.

Yes, Xavier has been revealed to be a catalogue of sins, but I agree with Greg Burgas, back up there. These are all ‘modern’ takes on the super hero, and DO MAKE him more interesting, like John G said. Personally, I choose to look at the character as a unique general in a major conflict, and like many of us we commit acts we are not proud of. I think Xavier did all these things precisely bc he was on the path to good will.
I liked what Mike Carey was doing with him in Legacy, but now it seems no writers know what to do with him since Carey let him go.

Half of the ones you guys are crucifying him for the character didn’t even himself know.
I gotta do a retcon, but my memory doesn’t recall him knowing he had a kid with Haller, when Legion first attacked!! Did Xavier really know Karma was enslaved by the Shadow King?!

How about biggest x-men feats.

Oh sorry for the double post but one of Xavier’s BIGGEST lies is when he only told Storm his plan to find the skrull imposter planted into the x-men. I mean the guy had them all think they killed each other. It doesn’t get any more deceptive than that.

I’m really UPSET at how you left out his treatment of Tessa!

Xavier did know Xi’an was enslaved by the Shadow King. In New Mutants #7, one issue after her apparent death, he told the X-Men that he sensed ‘the residue of a powerful– and malefic– psychic entity’, and that he did not ‘feel’ her death. He said that he wanted her teammates to think she was dead so that they would ‘far away, out of danger’ when the entity strikes again.
So yes, that deception was planned from the beginning. And the X-Men were in on the lying (although Logan was not present at the time).

I think the worst bit of the Legion storyline is the original relationship, Xavier acts as Gabrielle’s doctor and then has a relationship with her while she is still recovering from the trauma of the holocaust, the nazi memory manipulation and her own catatonia, ummm highly inapropiate me thinks, can anyone say patiant transference.

The one I forgot on the deception front is how long Professor X hid the fact he was a mutant instead of ‘comming out’, eventually doing so only when mind controlled by an enemy, how many of those emotional young mutant suffers issues of the comic would exist if they knew there were other mutant’s to look up to, somewhere to go. To my mind it puts him considerbly ethically below say Callisto, who at least attemped to collect and look after Mutant’s rather than just amass a private trained attact force.

I was JUST reading X-Men 1-10 and was marveling (guffaw) at what a dick Xavier was. Not really a lie (just highly unethical), but also: he sure was fond of mind wiping people back then for trivial stuff. He mind wipes and entire circus for gods sake!

“And the X-Men were in on the lying (although Logan was not present at the time).”
Neither were Scott and Kitty. It would have been out of character for any of them to go along with it, although I still say it was out of character for Kurt and Peter to go along with it. (Storm is another story.)

should’ve included Ultimate Xavier making the world think he killed Magneto…

omg this was proably a hard list to narrow down to just five given how it seems part of xaviers nature to be a jerk and a lier. including the bit about how he sent an earlier team to save the x-men from krakoe and then erased scotts mind about them including Vulcans being his brother. not to mention would have included him not being their for legion, plus also all the times he promised rogue he would help her and did nothing.

So bad reading this. Still can’t help but feel Xavier has been wronged by so many crappy writers who should have written their own stories rather than tread old ground with persecution complex garbage and pointless retcons.

Please never ever mention again the travesty that was Deadly Genesis, It actually was the reason I stopped reading X-Men.

As a reader who hadn’t read X-Men for years (I came back in the late end of Ed Brubaker’s run) it would’ve been nice to have issue numbers to guide me towards the issues I needed to read.

So Xavier’s a jerk. So are 90% of comic characters now. It has become an annoying trend that is causing me to read less and less. I want my characters to be heroes, not egotistic, self-serving bastards.

You left off the time when Xavier tried to use his powers to force Amelia Voght from leaving him, or when Xavier admitted that he lied to Rogue about helping her control her powers when she first joined the X-Men.

I can’t really count Onslaught against Prof X, since it was really the fault of his unconscious mind and Magento’s, and not something he did of his own free will.

I do have to give Prof X credit for not actually banging Jean, even though he was secretly fantasizing about bending her over his wheelchair.

Oh, and screwing with the minds of Kitty Pryde’s parents so that they would allow her stay at the school? MAJOR DICK MOVE.

Can’t believe that they incorporated Ultimate Wolverine’s origin into proper Wolverine’s origin.

I always hated Whedon’s stupid ‘Danger’ character. The danger room is not sentient. It’s a fucking hologram, not some lame terminator wannabe
Also, it was Jean Grey who screwed with the minds of Kitty’s parents

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