Marvel mutants and their different power levels
Mutants, mutants everywhere!
Aah Marvel, who doesn’t know their wonderful and vast world of fictionary mutant superhumans fighting villains from the galaxy? Marvel Comics, part of the Walt Disney Company, has been publishing stories and comics about the well-known X-Men since 1963 (X-Men, Sept. 1963). For those of you who have been living in a cave for all these years, here’s a quick summary about them: the X-Men are a fictional group of mutated humans with incredible abilities who fight together villains and cosmic threats from all around the universe. Or should we say “universes”? Yes, cause there are more than just one universe in the Marvel world! Heroes and villains die, resurrect, die again, get possesed by astral forces, are reborn, kidnapped an so on.
It’s nearly impossibile, if you’re not an hardcore fan, to get to know them all and understand all their complicated fictional biographies. Even the movies about X-Men are just a shortened fraction of what’s in the comics. That said, the goal of this article is not to explain all the event of the Marvel world (who has time for that?), but to give you a nice idea of who the mutants are and how they can be categorized and divided.
IS THERE A WAY TO CLASSIFY MARVEL MUTANTS?
During the years there have been many ideas and proposals to try and find a way to classify the beloved fictional heroes and villains in a rigid kind of scheme. Searching online you could probably find hundreds of possible classifications mostly based on power levels. However, many of them, well most of them, are not canon, meaning that they’re not officially recognized by the brand. There are a few, on the other hand, that have been cited in the comics, but are still very vague and not really clear.
If we narrow our search to just the most important canon classification, we can round the number up to two simple ones. The first being mentioned in the Age of Apocalypse (important serie of Marvel publications), where mutants are divided according to their power levels as ordered by Apocalypse, the supervillain, himself. Even if not clearly explained or thoroughly used in the comics, this classification identifies a lesser class of mutants called Dregs, with low levels of power who are no more than humas, Gammas and Betas mutants, a bit more powerful than Dregs but not that relevant, and last but not least Alpha Class mutants. These incredibly powerful guys are supposed to be Apocalypse finest warriors and deadly assassins.
However, since this categorization is only used briefly during this serie, we may want to analyze the other important one: the Greek-numbered classification.
BIOMUTATIVE CLASSIFICATION WITH GREEK LETTERS:
“Biomutative Classification”, it sounds very highfalutin, right? Well, it basically means that heroes and villains are classified according to both their power levels and their type of powers. As simple as that. This list, as well as the Apocalypse scheme, cannot be considered as a rigid classification, since it’s mentioned throughout the comics but it is always described as being very fluent and schifting as the stories unfold.
At the basis of this classification, we find, of course, low level mutants, called Epsilon-Beta Class. Now this class is only rarely recalled in some events of the comics and there are not that many interesting characters linked to it, so we may as well move on to some more powerful homicidal monsters, right?
Then we have the Beta Class, still not too powerful, but this group can count some rather peculiar characters, like Brian Rinehart, who had to be taken down with lethal force by the Sentinel, a villain of “Earth-616” (yes, they have multiple earths, since one wasn’t already enough…). This poor guy was actually rather good and polite and could blast bolts of destructive energy from his hands and also create force fields, low level, right?
After Beta mutants, there are, of course, Alpha Class mutants. These people are very, very dangerous if they get angry. Charles Xavier, aka Professor X, was an alpha mutant and he could control basically anyone with his mind. Just to give you the idea of how powerful they can be! Among them there are many intersting and well-know names: Magneto, Ciclops, Sunfire, Iceman, Polaris, Nathan Summers, Rasputin, Yeti and many many more. They represents the huge portion of the comics main characters and they side themselves with either good or evil according to their goals and personal alignment.
If you were thinking that Alphas were the most powerful in those wretched fictional universes, think again! There are even stronger people firing laser beams and killing with a stare in the Marvel world. We’re talking about the Omega Class Mutants. These mutants have no foreseeable limits in terms of power and can be extremely dangerous or beneficial for the heroes side. Jean Grey, once the host of the cosmic entity the Phoenix Force, was one of these mutants. Matthew Malloy, Hope Summers, Franklin Richards and David Haller are among the ranks of this class and there even more!
IT ENDS HERE RIGHT? NO… IT DOESN’T.
Epsilon-Beta, Beta, Alpha, Omega, and still more! Yes, as you may have guessed, Marvel isn’t keen on staying into the strict terms of a regular classification and keeps on adding new heroes who defy common rules and go beyond or above each class. We have in fact some mutants who can be considered “nearly alpha class” or “almost omega level“ and, of course, there are those who go even beyond the Omega level mutants, with unspeakable powers and incredible abilities.
Among these tremendous forces of nature (should we say nature?), we can find some notable individuals: Vulcan, Mr. M, Franklin Richards and Matthew Malloy. You may have noticed that some of these names appear more than once and in different classes of power. That’s because, just like normal people, mutants undergo changes during their life and some experiences can alter, permanently or not, their powers.
To conclude, the list of Marvel mutants is so long and so complicated, that it would be very hard to describe it in a short article, but I hope this quick summary gave you a good idea of the imaginary world of the X-Men.