Regarding Magneto's early history, there are additional details derived from historical or scientific facts that don't have to be explicitly stated in the comics. For example, Magnus served in the Auschwitz Sonderkommando, as was shown in UNCANNY X-MEN #274, and stated in the 2004 EXCALIBUR; knowing Auschwitz history and the history of the SK, one can describe a lot more of what young Magnus was forced to do for the Nazis than is explicitly stated in the comics. Magneto himself has described what he did, basically, in UNCANNY X-MEN #274, but there are many more facets of life as a "crematoria raven" that help us understand what young Magnus went through. Likewise, dealing with Magda and Magnus' escape from Auschwitz as shown in the back-up story "A Fire in the Night" from CLASSIC X-MEN #12; the events depicted happned on a particular day in history (January 20, 1945, under certain circumstances. John Bolton's art and Chris Claremont's story don't have to show ALL these circumstances and details for us to know they happened ... had to have happened.
Some other points regarding Magneto's biography:
1) In the 2004 EXCALIBUR, Claremont retold the story of Magda and Magnus' escape and early life, and he left out the part about the Carpathian Mountain village. This is clearly shown in "A Fire in the Night" and since it is canon, Claremont's 2004 omission doesn't really contradict it. Claremont's EXCALIBUR reference jumped from the escape, to life in Vinnitsa. His earlier story described (logically, since they were on foot in the dead of the winter of 1944-1945) how they found shelter and safety in this obscure village BEFORE they moved to Vinnitsa.
2) Magneto did NOT reverse the poles of the earth in Magneto War -- he built a machine to channel his powers in order to disrupt and destroy the magnetosphere of earth. It was a crazy threat -- a blackmail attempt -- that went wrong, when he lost control of the situation after the X-Men attacked him.
3) Magneto is Jewish, there is no doubt about it. It was even stated in X-MEN #112, and EinC Quesada has backed this up. See X-MEN #72 for Magneto's confrontation with the forger Georg Odekirk. Go here for references, that include scans (fair use, fair use) from the comics to illustrate the references.
Magneto Facts and Background Information
Many readers still don't realize that the "Erik Lehnsherr the Sinte Gypsy" identity is a forged, false identity. Magneto took the name "Magnus" probably some time after he hired the forger to create the new identity. He has used all three names, sometimes as one name, sometimes separately. The name "Erik Lehnsherr" is a public persona, a public identity that Magneto has used for over 25 years, and refers to it as the name "Homo sapiens gave me." (As in NEW AVENGERS #20.)
4) Moira MacTaggart did NOT genetically "make Magneto good." That's simply not what happened, as stated in X-MEN vol.2 #2. And it's not a good position for Marvel to take -- that people are genetically "good" or "evil". Marvel has always been about character complexity; heroes have flaws, villains aren't all bad. Magneto's flaws are many, but he was basically a good man who went bad -- or continually makes the wrong choices, and is constantly goaded by his traumatic and painful past. Moira did NOT make Magnus good; she states exactly what she tried to do. She says that Magneto had an instability in his physiology that meant his human body couldn't handle the immense power he tried to channel through it. His mind, his psyche, were affected. We've seen in the comics (UNLIMITED #2, one of the parts that was actually accurate) how Magneto has an extra tract (or bundle of neurons) between his midbrain and brain stem. Moira tried to genetically strengthen his central nervous system, his body -- tried to "correct the anomaly" is her exact wording. The anomaly being, here is this uber-powerful mutant with a body that can't handle all that energy and power.
In any case, Magneto "made the choices he would have many anyway" as Moira told him. He, Magneto, was the one who accused Moira of "brainwashing" -- and he wouldn't let her protest or explain.
5) Astra did not "clone" Magneto. I know it's a fine distinction. But she made a bioengineered copy; Magneto was scanned and Astra copied him down to the last cell part, downloaded the "pattern of Magneto" into a "Glyxian eugenic restorative tank" and thus reproduced Magneto as a younger, more pliable version. (X-MEN #86.)
6) Magneto was advised by Storm to join the Hellfire Club. He was unsure of what to do, when he got the invitation. She said she'd join with him, as co-White King. (Yeah, "king" -- which is very interesting.) But then she and the X-Men appeared to die in Fall of the Mutants, and Magneto got sucked into the Club by Emma Frost's machinations. Dialog from NEW MUTANTS #75 that seems to suggest Magneto planned to join the Hellfire Club's Inner Circle is false, and contradicted by thoughts, words, and narration in several previous issues of NEW MUTANTS. Magneto was very conflicted about the entire matter, and feared that if he joined, he would too easily be tempted by the dark side again, so to speak. He proved to be correct, thanks to Emma Frost. Frost's motives are revealed as early as NEW MUTANTS #39, and it appears she wanted to use Magneto in order to oust Shaw, and eventually control the Hellfire Club herself.
NEW MUTANTS #75 also tried to have Magneto say that he deliberately held back from helping the X-MEN fight the Marauders and defend the Morlocks during the Mutant Massacre. But during the depiction of these events, for example UNCANNY X-MEN #211, it's Storm once again who orders Magneto to stay at the Mansion to protect the wounded and the New Mutants. She feels his powers will be useless in the Morlock tunnels, but she also fears he's psychologically unreliable due to the nature of the massacre (reminding him of the Holocaust). Magneto considered Storm the leader of the X-Men at this time, and did what she asked him to.
7) Magneto has stated that when he was reaged by Davan Shakari, he was returned to his "prime." And in several stories commented on how young and healthy he was. We see he was weak and aging in Neal Adams' UNCANNY #63, where he's the "Creator" in the Savage Land. And, in AVENGERS #110 and #111, he has to use a trick uniform that he gave to young Warren Worthington that transfers the youthful energy from Angel to him. He can hardly even move, let alone use his powers. It was a recurring theme -- he was destroying himself with his powers, and had to repeatedly "recharge." Also, there are repeated references in these old stories to Magneto's insanity. Jack Kirby drew those eyes differently than he did the faces of other villains -- Magneto's eyes were crazy and wide and staring, circled by dark lines. Magneto was described as having "insane laughter" or was simply described as being "insane." Not all Marvel villains back then were so described. Certainly not Dr. Doom, for example.
I go into this kind of detail to point out, that after he was babyized by Mutant Alpha, who did this specifically to give him a second chance, knowing he was basically a good man who might be able to change, he was supposed to grow up naturally, his body healed. When he was rapidly reaged -- passing through all the growth stages in minutes as is shown in the comics (UNCANNY X-MEN #104) -- to end up a man in his early 30s, his body regenerated itself at an incredible rate, and he healed all the damage of his body in those parts of his body that can regenerate cells and be repaired! This is scientific fact. It is also a handy explanation as to why Magneto continued to act psychotic for a little while AFTER he was reaged.
Neurons don't regenerate. When damaged, they are lost forever. That's why brain damage is so devastating. The brain DOES however, "rewire" itself -- reestablish new connections. People who are brain-damaged can relearn, they get their memories and skills back with effort. This being a science-fiction comic book story, we can see IN THE COMICS that Magneto was reduced to the level of a six-month-old baby and he retained much of his adult consciousness. (UNCANNY X-MEN #112, CLASSIC X-MEN #19). And indeed, the baby's brain is almost 50% of it's adult size already. When Magneto was reaged so quickly by Shakari, he gained the full mass of his brain back, through natural growth and development. But he still used those damaged, even infantile parts of his brain for a little while, while his brain rewired itself, and the adult parts of his cerebral cortex were integrated. Or, you could say, he retained from babyhood the more primitive dependence on the hind-brain (limbic system) that made him act insanely for a little while, and like all of us, as he aged his forebrain or cerebral cortex added most of the new growth. Only he aged in a few minutes.
you know it says magneto's real name has not been revailed — it's eric spiderman12901
Actually, Myst3 addresses this in the entry above yours, spiderman12901. Whereas I cannot address the veracity of this, Myst3 wrote that "Erik Lehnsherr" is a forged identity, not his real name. I'm guessing that this is a retcon since I had never heard this before. Then again, I am no X-pert. --Lonesome Pinky 00:36, 1 August 2006 (EDT)
Yeah, Magneto's real name remains unrevealed because he took the false name "Erik Lehnsherr" and the false ethnic identity of a Sinte gypsy, some 25 years ago, in order to hide from the police and better search for his Roma wife, Magda, amongst her own people. This is revealed in X-MEN #72.
In X-MEN #72, Sabra finds Magneto's papers in the files of Mossad, and has them analyzed by modern computer, and discovers they are forgeries, and were prepared by a master forger named Georg Odekirk. She alerts Gabrielle Haller, who had presented the fractured and mistake-filled "history" of Magneto and Auschwitz and the Holocaust during a lecture at a New York university some time earlier. They race to find Odekirk, in order to see if he can tell them anything about Magneto's real name and history. Meanwhile, Magneto himself has discovered that "his enemies" have discovered the forgeries, and he also moves quickly to confront Georg Odekirk; this time to tell him that his handiwork has failed the test, and that he must die. Before Magneto kills Odekirk, he reminds him how he, Magneto, was willing to deny "everything his family died for" in order to take the false name and ethnicity, in order to hide from the police and search for Magda. That now the forgery has been discovered, Magneto's enemies will trace "Erik Lehnsherr the Sinte" back to Odekirk. It is implied that given who his enemies are, including telepaths like (at the time) Jean Grey, they would easily discover too much about Magneto's real family name and identity, so he executes Odekirk then and there. He declares the only name he will be known by from then on is "Magnus." Presumably this too is a false name, but one that he himself took at some point.
Since that time, no one in the Marvel Universe but a handful of people, including Sabra, Xavier, Scott Summers, Wolverine, and probably Jean, are aware of the forgeries, and everyone still calls Magneto "Erik" because that's the only personal name they know him by. He himself uses the false name publicly, and recently in NEW AVENGERS #20 he called it the name "Homo sapiens gave me." It was given to him by a "Homo sapiens" -- Georg Odekirk. The name his parents gave him remains unknown. Both Pietro and Wanda seem to know that "Erik Lehnhserr" is a false name, as both have used "Magnus" at different times as the only part of Magneto's "real" name they know. Wanda most recently in the HOUSE OF M, which was the HOUSE OF MAGNUS. Again, we don't know if Magnus is a part of Magneto's real name -- it might be. Sources are vague on this matter.Myst3 03:16, 1 August 2006 (EDT)
ADDENDUM: MAGNETO: TESTAMENT #1 arrived in stores today, and it is now revealed that Magneto's birth name is Max Eisenhardt. His father was Jakob Eisenhardt, and his sister's name was Ruth. His mother's name remains unrevealed as of issue #1. He is also revealed to have been 9 years old when the story begins, in September of 1935, so he was born either in late 1925, or in 1926. Myst3 15:49, 10 September 2008 (EDT)
Seeing as how the Magneto in Planet X was an impostor, shouldn't we get another image for the article to replace the current one? --DrBat 10:07, 12 September 2006 (EDT)
We don't know what exact age Magneto was re-aged to. It is hard to tell visually, esp. with his naturally white hair. Is it not more reasonable to assume that he ended up in his early 20s than his early 30s?
On why he continued for a bit in his deranged thoughtpatterns, I always believed that he simply continued acting on those earlier assumptions that had become fundamental to his thoughtpatterns. Which were made when he was nuts. Only later did he reexamine them calmy in the light of sanity.We all make up our minds on some things and then act on those without fully analysing every step of the reasoning process every time. If we see a mugger, we don't stop to go through our whole process on why muggers are bad. In other words, he followed his habitual thought-patterns for a while, untill he started realizing that they were based on some rather demented reasoning.
Also, I had believed that while it was not stated flat out, Magneto did not get through the concentration camp in his teen years without some nutritional defficiencies, which were corrected when he was rejuvernated.
On other subjects, 616 Magneto does not use a helmet mechanism for mindshielding. His shields are natural. Xorn, movie and Ultimate Magneto does/did not have this advantage, and used a mechanism in their helmets.
Magnetos romance with Lee Forrester was not really brief, it was apparently still on in X-Men 275.
Magneto is a very poor strategist. But a brilliant tactican. He can fight multiple opponents with great success, but his strategy is normally to gain some incredibly powerful weapon and blackmail his opponents.
Umbrall, you make some excellent points.
Regarding Magneto's age, in UNCANNY #200, during Magneto's trial, Gabrielle Haller's defense rested on her contention that Magneto was a new man, having been de-aged and re-aged, and thus "reborn." In order to support her argument, she had a team of medical experts examine Magneto. She says, "... yet expert medical testimony will show he is now biologically a man in his ealry 30s...." So, this is why Magneto is said to be a man in his 30s; mid-30s now, given the passage of time since his trial.
Regarding your point about Magneto's thought patterns; I think you are correct. But both views are right. Magneto suffered damage to his body and brain via the misuse and overuse of his powers. Moira stated this, and we have seen how he exhausted himself in stories dating back to the 1960s, for example the Thomas/Adams depiction of Magneto as "The Creator" in the Savage Land. (In CLASSIC X-MEN #19 he thinks to himself, after he is hit by another of his migraine headaches after he uses his powers, "These seizures strike now whenever I use my powers. More extreme my usage, more debilitating the attack. I wonder, am I pushing myself too hard? Trying to run ... before I've learned to crawl?") By the time he attacks Cape Citadel, he's already done a lot of damage to himself. We have to pose the null hypothesis; when Davan Shakari reaged Magneto so quickly, and as stated in the comics, healed his body of the damage while restoring him to the prime of masculine health, how could his brain also have been restored so quickly, when that is physiologically not possible? Magneto's bizarre behavior in CAPTAIN AMERICAN Annual #4, which takes place shortly after his re-aging in UNCANNY #104 (in Marvel Time), is further evidence of a time delay.
However, you are right. Moira MacTaggert strengthened his mind and body, giving Magneto the potential to be a better man. But his old patterns of thinking and behaving persisted. And indeed, these patterns of thinking continue to this day, and maybe will always be there; this is what makes Magneto the adversary of the X-Men, a "villain," not one of the good guys. Magneto is complex. And the choices he makes are based on multiple factors. For example, in the added material to the story of UNCANNY X-MEN #112, (in CLASSIC X-MEN #19), Magneto comments, "...How classic. I have never been stronger ... I have avenged myself on my foremost foes. Yet, I have never felt more haunted." And then, he muses on Magda and says, "...Does she live? Has she recognized Magneto the terrorist, the 'evil mutant' as the young man who loved her? Foolish woman ... it was such as she who made me what I am! If she ... who loved me ... was terrified of my mutant power, think how the rest of humanity will react! Has reacted! I endured one death camp .. in Auschwitz. I will not see another. People fear what they do not understand and destroy what they fear. Mutantkind's only hope for survival is a world wherein WE are the rulers." That is a perfect illustration of what we both are saying, I think. While Magneto is stronger than ever, and his mind is now clear and he's remembering everything, and is capable of making different choices, he can't escape the paranoia, the rage, the desire for revenge.
As for your point about malnutrition, you are again correct. I believe it is stated in one of the earlier Official Handbooks, that Magnus suffered from malnutrition and diseases while in Auschwitz. Although, once he got into the Sonderkommando, he would have had adequate food and medicine, but the horror he endured everyday as one of the crematoria ravens would have left a psychological scar far deeper than anything physical, giving more credence to your points above about Magneto's "patterns of thought and behavior."
I agree with you about Magneto's helmet. But has that been retroactively changed? It isn't a bad idea, if it has been. It makes sense that the helmet had a purpose other than to make Magneto look like a GraecoRoman war-god. But yeah, the 616 helmet in the comics was used to influence the thoughts of others (in the AVENGERS/X-MEN crossover of the 1980s), but wasn't originally used as a psi-shield.
As for Lee Forrester, I again agree with you. Her romance with Magneto lasted many months, although they hardly saw each other. (But when they did, it was very passionate, see MARVEL FANFARE #33, for example.) In UNCANNY #274, ironically, Magneto states initially that his heart is committed to Lee when he's first attracted to Rogue, but by #275, he has a genuine "brief" romance with Rogue. He cheats on Lee to have a fling with Rogue. Once Zaladane was defeated, it seems that Magneto and Lee Forrester never saw each other again, and after the events of X-MEN vol.2, #1-#3, their romance sputtered out.
As for "strategist" vs. "tactician," I don't know enough about military strategy or tactics to intelligently comment. I thought those two words were very similar. I will say, in my opinion, Magneto in the 616 Marvel Universe is not very good at either. Since he often has made his plans while in a grandiose mania, or when experiencing psychotic symptoms. His great rage, pain, and paranoia also contribute to poor strategic skills, in my opinion. On the other hand, have we seen evidence that Magneto could have been a brilliant tactician and strategist? Yes, in the AOA. He was an excellent strategist, and successfully restored the correct timeline, even at the expense (or so we thought) of his wife and son. Could you explore some more the different between the two terms, using examples from 616 continuity, in relation to Magneto?Myst3 13:04, 12 December 2006 (CST) Ri [lt2] is not #1-#3 it found in house of m .
I read somewhere that there are talks of a Magneto movie to be made. IMDB.com already shows supposed cast members for it and it says that it whould be out in 2009. Does anyone know if this is really so?--Venomocity 11:35, 24 January 2007 (CST)
Hi im her to tell you that i am to agree That ther not going to make a movie But are going to have him mentioned in the next mavel movie to do with magneto.--[[User:Wise Old Man]
The Januray 2009 Marvel solicitations are out, and they include X-MEN: MAGNETO TESTAMENT #5, accompanied by one of the most moving, historically significant and symbolic covers I've ever seen in comics. "The boy survived Kristallnacht, the Einsatzgruppe, and the Warsaw Ghetto. But now Max Eisenhardt faces Hitler's Final Solution in the death camp known as Auschwitz-Birkenau. What will it take to endure? Who are the Sonderkommando? And will a vision of a girl named Magda bring hope — or horror? The definitive origin story of Magneto reaches its shattering conclusion." This description, that cover, literally sent chills down my spine. I urge everyone to pre-order and/or buy this series. Issue #3 comes out on November 12, 2008. Every Magneto fan needs to be reading this series.
Here is a link to information about Magneto and the Auschwitz Sonderkommando:
Magneto and the Sonderkommando
Myst3 11:18, 21 October 2008 (CDT)