The shapeshifting mutant known as Mystique has long been one of the most mysterious characters in the X-Men universe.
Since obtaining her gifts at the age of twelve, she effectively changed her identity many times over the years, leaving no traceable history and path during her life. She continued to take on various identities for either her own benefit or because of the plans of whatever group she was a part of at the time. On many occasions, however, her own desires superseded those of the group, which led the mutant to act out with only her best interests at heart. This selfishness has affected not only her life but those around her as well.
From jilted lovers to abandoned children, Mystique (also known as Raven Darkholme) lived to satisfy only herself. On rare occasions, however, readers were able to see Mystique make an effort to put the needs of others before herself.
Long considered a fan favorite in the world of the X-Men, Mystique has made her transition to big screen as well. The character has appeared throughout Fox’s movie universe, starting with X-Men in 2000. Her appearances have been scattered through the franchise movies and will even included the upcoming 2019 film Dark Phoenix. Appearances in animatedTV shows and video games add to her legacy as well.
Although fans continue to be intrigued by her mysterious past and outstanding abilities, we decided to look into the aspects of this beloved character that just don’t seem to add up.
Here are 20 Things That Make No Sense About Mystique.
20 Imitating Other People Keeps Her Ageless
One of Mystique’s most iconic power remains her ability to shape shift with incredible accuracy. Not only do her morphs copy the person’s full body but she can also imitate their voice, mannerism, and personality. In addition, the details in her transformations can even fool voice and retina recognition systems.
Considering her talents first appeared when she was twelve, Mystique has had plenty of time to perfect her skills. However, her shapeshifting skills have brought additional benefits to her life. Her mutant ability also made her nearly ageless.
She is estimated to be over 100 years old.
Based on her dialogue in Mystique vol 1 issue #17, she lived well beyond the average human lifespan: "I wasn't born last night, or even last century, for that matter..."
19 Radiation Exposure Gave Her New Weird Abilities
As we know, several Marvel characters have gained extraordinary powers due to radiation exposure. Look how much it benefited the Hulk.
Although shapeshifting became Mystique’s trademark skill set, her powers changed significantly after being exposed to radioactive materials. After saving Toad’s life during the X-Men Forever series, her shapeshifting powers expanded to include the ability to develop physical transformations that could be applied to specific situations.
For instance, she could develop night vision when needed.
Some of the more adaptations have included developing talons for fingers, growing wings on her back and creating multiple hands and limbs.
Not strange enough? Well, she can also make herself into a two-dimensional paper thin being because, well, who wouldn’t need that ability?
18 She Was Almost the Biological father of Nightcrawler
Mystique’s history in the Marvel Universe almost began quite controversially.
Created by David Cockrum and Chris Claremont, she originally premiered in Ms. Marvel issue#16 in 1978 as the title character’s enemy. Nothing too controversial there, however, the original plans for her history would have turned many heads.
According to Chris Claremont, they planned to have Mystique and Destiny as Nightcrawler’s biological parents by having Mystique morph into a man for the conception. An interesting concept indeed. Marvel declined the idea given that the Comics Code Authority prohibited the depiction of gay or bi characters in comics. Such a progressive notion certainly would have shaken up the comic book world. However, later in her history, Mystique as eventually depicted as a being bisexual.
17 She Can Shapeshift in Appearance Only, Not Body Mass
Over the years, Mystique’s superior shapeshifting skills continue to be one of the most impressive abilities around. From imitating Professor X to many of the other X-Men convincingly, her mutant skills continued to serve as an invaluable asset. However, her talents do come with some limitations.
Unfortunately, her imitations cannot duplicate the actual body mass of the person, especially if they are larger than her.
Granted, morphs of a subject that has a similar body mass or lower of her own don’t give her any issues. However, for any morphs that result in a form more substantial than her own, her body weight will remain the same.
In fact, taking the shape of anyone larger than herself actually results in her morph time being negatively affected, resulting in a limited imitation.
16 She Keeps Having Children and Abandoning Them
In the midst of her numerous disguises, identities and shapeshifting missions, Mystique managed to have children. Her first child resulted from her relationship with Sabretooth. While disguised as deceased German secret agent Leni Zauber, the two had an affair which resulted in her becoming pregnant. After faking her end to leave the relationship, she later gave birth to her son, Graydon Creed. She then gave him up for adoption.
Her second child, Nightcrawler, resulted from her affair with the mutant Azazel. She terminated Azazel and buried his body, deciding to have her child on her own. However, the locals in her town considered them both to be demons because of the child’s demonic appearance, and she abandoned him.
15 But adopts and raises Rogue
Now, before you dismiss Mystique for being the worst mother ever, she actually found it in her heart to help raise a child. Granted, not one of her biological children but still, she did become someone’s mother.
It was all due to prophecy by her long-time love Destiny, predicting Rogue’s importance to their lives.
She searched for the child until she found her alone in a forest. They took the child in and became the caregivers for the 4-year-old mutant. She grew to care for the child deeply and became very protective of her. Rogue even became a member of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, having been trained by Mystique over the years.
14 She Shot and Kidnapped Rogue
Since taking a young Rogue under her wing, Mystique grew quite fond of the child, caring for her like her own. She remained protective of her throughout the years and occasionally went out of her way to keep her out of harm's way.
There have even been occasions when Mystique has been seen crying over an injured Rogue. However, during the X-Men: Endangered Species comics, Mystique actually shot and kidnapped her.
As part of the Marauders working for Mister Sinister, she abducted her adopted daughter and brought her with the intention of using her to destroy him. It seems like they need to work on their communication skills to avoid all this needless gunshot wounds and felonies.
13 Her clothing
The beauty of the Mystique’s talent in morphing lies in the details of her replicas. Not only can she replicate the physical aspects of her subject, but the level of the details can capture even minute features. Not even recognition software can detect the difference in her morph and the real thing.
Her skills don’t just stop at physical appearance. She includes their uniforms, clothing, or any distinctive outerwear that completes that illusion. Clearly, Mystique perfected this skill in her own everyday life since she is actually not wearing clolthes, pretty much ever.
Even when she is not taking the form of her targets, Mystique continually changes her own appearance and clothes to appear to be covered most of the time.
Imagine the savings of never having to go shopping.
12 She Can Change Her Own Scent
As her powers and abilities continued to evolve throughout her history, Mystique continues to be one of the smarter and stronger mutants overall. Her strategies do not always rely on her ability to make powerful offensive moves, though.
Her ability to morph makes for incredible defensive strategies, even if needed as a last-minute fallback plan. She can easily take the form of someone else and blend in with a crowd. Even when she finds herself unable to blend in with other beings, she can still use several cloaking abilities to remain undetected. She has the ability to camouflage herself to her surroundings, making it harder to detect her presence.
To further enhance that cloaking ability, she can also change her own scent to make the form she has morphed into at add to her complete disguise.
11 She Can’t Replicate Superpowers
The powers and skills of many mutants in the Marvel Universe seem incomprehensible. Thanks to a simple change in their DNA, these human beings become more enhanced, possessing abilities that take them to the never level of evolution.
Mystique’s extraordinary skill set sets her apart from many of the other mutants. She possesses powers that only a few others share. Though her dominance in the mutant world has been supplemented by additional knowledge, including fighting abilities and weaponry mastery, her key offensive still remained with her morphing powers.
In order to fight another mutant effectively, she must rely on her other skills sets beyond shapeshifting.
Though she can duplicate the appearance of other mutants, she cannot replicate their superpowers. Though she does possess few powers herself, her morphs are merely duplicates in form only.
10 Despite the X-Men movies, she hardly ever worked with Magneto
Long-standing X-Men fans flocked to the theaters when the beloved mutants made their big screen debut in X-Men back in 2000.
As expected, many aspects of the X-Men universe changed when the comic book characters transferred to film. These changes included new storylines, powers, and backstories that directly conflicted with their Marvel Comics existence. Included in these changes was the relationship between Mystique and Magneto.
In the X-Men movie universe, Mystique serves as his second-in-command, often seen at his side for decisive fights and major decisions. Their comic book history, however, varied quite drastically. The two villains rarely worked together.
9 She worked for S.H.I.E.L.D.
Though her onscreen and comic book depictions do vary, one underlining truth remains: Mystique always looks out for her own best interest. Over the years, she utilized tactical strategies to stay undetected and pass for any being that is suitable for her current situation. These decisions and means of manipulations have led her to be categorized as a villain in many causes and, occasionally, an anti-hero.
However, in rare circumstances, Mystique has found herself fighting not only for the good guys, but for large-scale agencies.
Throughout the years, she has alligned herself with S.H.I.E.L.D., like in the House of M comic book series.
Also, she also found herself working for the government as a member of the X-Factor team after being captured for trying to destroy a dam.
8 She went after Her Daughter’s Boyfriend
Parents are often concerned about their children’s well-being. They often do everything in their power to make sure that get the best education and upbringing, ensuring their future success. In terms of love, many parents become very suspicious of people that come into their children’s lives, hoping they make the best decisions with their hearts. However, sometimes, parents have to intervene when they feel their child may have made a wrong decision.
Mystique, for example, decided that she needed to investigate Rogue’s relationship with her boyfriend Gambit further. How? By disguising herself as a Xavier School student named Foxx and attempting to romance him.
Whatever you have to do to make sure our children stay safe, right?
7 She Turned the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants into Good Guys
The Brotherhood of Evil Mutants has a long-standing reputation for being an enemy of both mutants and humans. Focused on the promotion of mutants as being superior to humans, the organization worked to break away from the non-mutant population. Often associated with Magneto, the second version of this group also fell under the leadership of Mystique.
In one particular instance, the group actually changed their name to the Freedom Force and willingly become agents of the government.
Granted with pardons for their past crimes, they seek out to capture the current Brotherhood leader, Magneto. The group assisted the government in taking control of the mutant community (a result of growing anti-mutant sentiment), leading to battles with the Avengers, X-Factor, and other notable mutant organizations.
6 She was a man in an alternate universe
Although the Earth-616 version of Mystique remains the most recognizable version of her character, Mystique has taken some fascinating journeys throughout the other universes of Marvel.
Although our version of Mystique never got the chance to have a child with Destiny, this storyline did make an appearance during the Exiles series.
On Earth-797, Mystique was depicted as a man going by the name Raphael-Raven Darkholme (with his alias being Mystiq).
However, the family did not get the opportunity to enjoy their happy time together for very long. Both Destiny and the child lost their lives in undisclosed circumstances, leaving Mystiq to visit their graves frequently during the storyline.
During one particular visit, he is almost attacked by soldiers before being saved by Sabretooth. In a debt of gratitude, Mystiq decided to join the Exiles and fight alongside him.
5 She Got Married But Used Her Powers To Betray Him
Although she usually maintained her disguises to carry out her own plots and objectives, she sometimes found herself in situations beyond a “business only” scope. Considering her decade-old lifespan, Mystique did become lonely over the years and occasionally took advantage of her disguises to get closer to people.
Beyond her long-term relationship with Destiny, Mystique has actually been in another formal committed relationship during her time in the comic book world. While disguised as Raven, she married Baron Christian Wagner (also referred to as Count Eric Wagner in other comic issues).
Although he truly loved her, she found herself seeking affection elsewhere as he did not satisfy her. In addition, his inability to conceive a child became an issue in their marriage. Eventually, she utilized her shapeshifting abilities to find gratification with other people.
4 She ended the life of her own son
Mystique began a relationship with Sabretooth while in disguise. She faked her own passing to end their affair but learned that she was pregnant. She put the child, Graydon Creed, up for adoption and moved on with her life. She did keep track of the child as he grew up, but lost interest in him after she learned he did not have any mutant powers.
His abandonment issues led him hating mutants.
He became the leader and founder of Friends of Humanity. He even lashed out, trying to hurt his mother by eliminating the grandson of Destiny. She vowed to take the life of her son in retaliation.
On the eve of the Presidential election he was running in, Mystique took his life in the middle of his campaign speech.
3 After being resurrected, she could turn into animals
Several limitations to Mystique’s powers prevented her from being the ultimate shapeshifting master. Although her copies were flawless, her morphs were limited to just duplicates of human beings. Thanks to exposure to radiation, her enhanced skills included morphing variations of animal body parts yet she could not take on full forms.
However, after the events during Wolverine issue# 303, Mystique’s abilities further enhance once she has been resurrected by The Hand. Her ability to duplicate animals improved to the point that she can grow tentacles for arms and even take on the form of animals better.
In the comic Astonishing X-Men issue #62, Mystique even managed to shrink her body to take the form of a dog.
2 The one biological child she did raise ended her life
Between abandoning her children, kidnapping them, or even terminating them, Mystique continued to prove she was not suitable to raise kids. However, she tried to redeem herself during the events of the Battle of the Atom.
During this arc, she did decide to dedicate to being a better mother to Raze, her so with Wolverine. Though she strived to be there for her child, he decided to eliminate his mother was a better option for him.
After doing so, he assumed her identity, as he received her morphing abilities as well as his father’s powers.
He used the disguise to take over Madripoor in All-New X-Men issue #27. It seems like ruthlessness runs in the family.
1 Her Body was auctioned off for $5 million
Understandably, Mystique’s unique abilities and talents made her the envy of many mutants, including those who wanted her for themselves. The criminal organization The Hand took a particular interest in obtaining her.
During the events of Wolverine Goes to Hell, Mystique attempted to rescue Wolverine after she helped send his soul to Hell, leaving his possessed body on Earth to harm his loved ones. Although she initially sided with the villain Red Right Hand and his plot, she turned on him, working to reverse his actions.
Though she eventually helped to bring Wolverine back from Hell, he wasn't exactly grateful. Angered at her part in the plot, in the end, he terminated her. Her body is then recovered and sold at auction to The Hand for millions of dollars.
What else doesn't make sense about Mystique from X-Men? Let us know in the comments!