The X-Men franchise might be one of the first hits in the modern superhero genre, but it's never had much visual flair. Known for dull colors and excessive black leather, the X-Men are the movie superheroes that just won't dress up like superheroes.
Why do the X-Men movies rarely look like the X-Men comics? Other than X-Men: First Class and the cast's bright yellow uniforms, the franchise rarely dresses characters in anything colorful, eye-catching, or remotely fun. However, X-Men fans aren't ashamed of colorful visuals like the movies seem to be — and thankfully, many of them are great artists!
For this list, we've collected some of the most unique X-Men fan redesigns we could find to show just how creative those fans can be. These fan creations vary from slight changes in costumes, to radical departures from X-Men source material. These redesigns can get pretty weird and wild — and yet they still manage to be cooler than the movies' black leather jumpsuits.
This article would not be possible without the exceptional art and talented artists below, whom we thank for giving the world such imaginative takes on classic characters.
Without further ado, here are 16 Crazy X-Men Redesigns Way Better Than The Movies.
16 Hi-Tech Deadpool
Ryan Reynolds' Deadpool outfit might be the only design the movies actually get right, but this sci-fi redesign by Johnson Ting is a cool alternative. Despite the near-future aesthetic and inverted color scheme, this tech-savvy Wade Wilson is still the merc that Marvel fans know and love.
There are some obvious nods to his original design: the swords mounted on his back, the dual pistols, the logo on his belt, and so on. However, the piece actually contains many Easter eggs left by the artist that embody the character: a Playboy pin, a music player in his chest, a pouch overflowing with candy, and more.
He looks pretty comic-accurate in Deadpool, but this design is way too cool to ignore, especially when we're still mentally suppressing the end of X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Well, we're suppressing all of it, really.
15 Women Of X
This piece by Kevin Wada, dubbed "X-Men Do Vanity Fair", has the women of the X-Men abandon their comic book costumes for modern fashion.
Many of them still maintain elements of their superhero outfits, like their basic designs and color schemes, but without the armor or colorful spandex. It's rare that the women get the spotlight in the X-Men films, but here they look as fierce as ever. The piece features (from left to right) Rogue, Ms. Marvel, Emma Frost, Polaris, Storm, Psylocke, and Sage.
Yes, we know Ms. Marvel isn't part of the X-Men, (and that Carol Danvers is Captain Marvel now), but she only adds to an already great lineup of characters. Wada's art feels truly refreshing without comic-heavy influences — which is why it stylishly lands a spot on this list.
14 Liquid Metal Magneto
The movies have always had trouble dressing Magneto up in his costume. The original trilogy had Sir Ian McKellen dress up in a dark cloak and helmet, which was... close enough? Meanwhile, the prequel trilogy never decided on Michael Fassbender's signature look. However, artist Anjin Anhut offers a design on the character that's just as functional as it is cool.
In this design, Magneto's armor is made of liquid metal that he can shape to his will. It forms around him in the shape of his armor (depicted here as a bit shinier and sharper), and can be used as projectile weapons as well as a mechanism for flight.
Why hasn't anyone thought of this before? Iron Man has had something similar, but not Magneto? This one gets bonus points for originality, on top of already being an awesome design for the master of magnetism.
13 Mecha Wolverine
Sadly, Hugh Jackman never donned the yellow tights. Even in Logan, science's answer to the legendary Wolverine was X-24 — a slightly younger clone of Logan and not, say, a ridiculous Wolverine robot. We can dream though, as artist Jeff Chen shows us just what that might look like with his robotic take on Wolverine.
With the jagged edges, horned headpiece, and classic blue and yellow color scheme, this design clearly channels Wolverine's iconic look. Even without the popped claws, this design would feel just as recognizable. It makes us wonder what the rest of the X-Men would look like in mechanized form!
It's a shame we never got to see Hugh Jackman in some semblance of his true costume, but who knows — with Disney's newfound ownership of the X-Men, a comic-accurate Wolverine might be right around the corner. Until then, we'll gladly take this sick robot instead.
Not so much a redesign as it is a really cool idea, artist Sandro Si mashed up several mutant heroes to create "X-Men Fusion." An amalgam of Wolverine, Nightcrawler, Cyclops, and Colossus, this character would fit really well in the X-Men films — specifically at the end of X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Instead of ruining Deadpool by giving him all sorts of powers that don't belong to him, maybe a character like this would have upset less fans?
Not only does this character share the physical traits of several heroes, but the powers as well — meaning there could potentially be more X-Men thrown into the mix that have iconic non-physical traits. Maybe a psychic power, perhaps? In any case, it's a cool idea that's wonderfully rendered by the artist.
11 Scott And Jean Meet Overwatch
Even in an homage to the hit video game Overwatch, artist Kiel Whitaker manages to nail the X-Men costumes better than the movies ever did. The colors are bright, and the suits themselves feel like outfits tailored to their wearer rather than a generic leather bodysuits.
This was created in an attempt to reimagine the X-Men in Overwatch's universe. As such, Cyclops and Jean Grey resemble Soldier 76 and Symmetra, two of the game's characters, respectively.
It's almost unfair to call this a redesign. Other than the influences from Overwatch, these could very easily be regular X-Men suits. Sadly, the movies have never given the X-Men distinct costumes — and no, the last two minutes of X-Men: Apocalypse don't really count. With that said, this toyetic video game-inspired redesign makes the list. Hopefully the mutants' next outing will take a swing at fun costumes like these.
10 Tribal Punk Ororo
While not a traditional X-Men uniform, this Storm redesign (also by Anjin Anhut) oozes with personality. The design strikes a good balance between Storm's Kenyan roots as well as her punk rock aesthetic from the early 1980s.
It's not regal enough for the Queen of Wakanda, nor is it necessarily designed for combat, but it is a youthful and strong look for a character often reserved for the background of most X-Men films. It even has hidden functionality!
According to Anhut, her robes open up into a wingsuit, and her tattoo — which runs over her arms and up the back of her neck— acts as a sort of electrical conductor for her powers. The tattoo itself is three O's (the third visible on the back of her neck), which represent the O's in her first name: Ororo. Nice touch!
9 Juggernaut Reimagined
The Juggernaut has never really had a complex design. No matter the incarnation, he's often just a big dude in a giant dome-shaped helmet. Despite the original design's simplicity, it remains iconic, and artist David Tran managed to put a spin on it that makes it way cooler.
This redesign opts for a more animalistic look, like a angry monster, instead of a man. The holes in the mask and helmet are much smaller, which don't leave glimpses of skin like the classic design. Here, all that can be seen in his face are small eyes and teeth. It's surprisingly effective as far as intimidation goes — as if the villain is some vicious creature, more than anything else.
8 High-Fantasy Wolverine
Artist Nate Hallinan created this awesome Wolverine redesign, reimagining the character as a dwarven warrior in a fantasy world. His comic book costume is translated into leather and metal to fit to the setting, and his physical features were already similar to that of a high-fantasy dwarf. Aside from the stellar visual design, the artist even attributes a backstory to this fantasy Wolverine.
Loghand Wolve'rune (meaning "the Stone Wolf") was exiled from his dwarf clan, as his mysterious past, lengthy lifespan, and curious abilities had led them to believe that he may have dabbled in forbidden dark magic. His skeleton is covered in an extremely durable metal dubbed "Adamithrilium" and his personality is that of the Wolverine fans know and love. This is a fantastic redesign— and frankly, an alternate universe movie pitch that sounds pretty enticing.
7 Robo Deadpool
Can you imagine the how much more destruction Deadpool could cause with four arms?
This intricate redesign by artist Justin Currie takes Deadpool and transforms him into a super hi-tech robot. With loads of loose wiring and small armor plates, this amount of minute detail in this redesign is something to behold.
Despite being so radically different in style, the design doesn't stray far from what makes Deadpool so iconic. The artist kept Deadpool's color scheme and logo, and even kept his animated eyes — while adding another set, of course. The artist also promised to write the character a backstory in his original post, but sadly it looks like he never got around to it. Regardless, this is a sweet redesign for Deadpool that we just couldn't leave off the list.
6 Tactical Emma Frost
This piece is the best from a set of X-Men redesigns by artist Calvin P., who gave several X-Men unique new uniforms. Each one is brightly colored and personalized to each character, while featuring extra armor that they usually don't sport. This is especially true for Emma Frost, whose revealing white robes have been replaced with a much more functional, combat-ready outfit.
With a trenchcoat, some utility pouches, and new silver armor, Emma Frost has never looked like more of an X-Man than she does in this redesign. The armor may seem redundant seeing as she can transform her skin into diamonds for protection, but why would she ever take the chance?
This stylish look is practical, and it gives her better visual consistency with the rest of the X-Men — a welcome change for a character that rarely displays any kind of visible solidarity with her fellow mutant teammates.
5 Special Ops Wolverine
While Wolverine isn't exactly know for subtlety, this redesign by Grailee was created for stealth. The artist designed the suit with a scenario in mind: Logan is recruited by the government to work alongside Captain America in covert operations. It's an interesting concept that is even referenced in the costume, with Xs symbolizing his roots with the X-Men, as well as a S.H.I.E.L.D. logo on his belt for his newfound employment.
According to the artist, his armor can be removed so that the suit can be worn as casual outerwear, and the yellow accents are indicators of Wolverine's temper. If he gets worked up into a rage, the lights on his suit will glow. While that sounds impractical for stealth, the visual design is a nice step up from black leather. The mask also maintains that classic comic book silhouette, which is a cool addition to an already sweet design.
4 Military Magneto
It feels like the First Class trilogy has always been working towards a Magneto like this one. Artist Ogi Grujic created this sensible redesign for the X-Men antagonist that seems to perfectly fit the character's personality.
Erik Lehnsherr is a dignified man that runs his Brotherhood of Mutants with strict leadership. An outfit reminiscent of a military general feels completely appropriate for the villain, unlike his recent movie outfits that look a little ridiculous on Michael Fassbender.
Grujic also brightened up Magneto's color palette with some purple and pink tones, and specifically added metal soles on his shoes so that Magneto can "walk on air." It's a simple yet effective costume design — from which the movies could probably learn a thing or two.
3 Storm and Forge
Although Forge has never appeared in the films, here he and Storm are wonderfully redesigned by Peter V. Nguyen.
Storm is given a traditional X-Men outfit, but with an added cloak and natural, afro-like hair. Meanwhile, Forge sports an outfit that differs wildly from his typical look. He wears a Metal Gear Solid-inspired tactical outfit and extra armor, highlighting his background as a soldier.
The designs were created to complement each other, as the characters briefly did when they were a romantic item back in the 1980s. The outfits feel unique to each character and yet similar enough to emulate the bond that the characters used to have. It sounds a bit like the artist wants these characters back together, which is totally fine by us. After all, the X-Men franchise seems to lack a strong couple, and these two would be a pleasant addition to the big screen.
2 Magneto And Rogue Meet Overwatch
Here's another Overwatch-inspired piece by Kiel Whitaker, this time featuring the X-Men characters Rogue and Magneto.
The video game's tech-hero aesthetic is even more apparent here. Rogue wears much heavier armor than she usually does, even for the comics. She also sports what looks to be a cybernetic arm... or maybe it's just a really hi-tech pair of gloves. Either way, she's never looked this super in the movies.
What's even more divergent from typical design is Whitaker's take on Magneto, which drops the helmet and cloak all together in favor of a suit of armor reminiscent of the Overwatch character Reinhardt. This is a surprisingly refreshing change that still retains Magneto's powerful and dignified persona. While we do miss his helmet, this is a seriously cool set of redesigns.
1 High Fantasy Quicksilver
Yes, we know this is based on Quicksilver from the Avengers, but since he's gotten no love from the MCU and tons from the X-Men, we decided to include this stellar piece on the list.
Aaron Taylor Johnson's short-lived tenure as the character may be the punchline of many jokes and memes, but to say he doesn't look awesome in artist Daniel Kamarudin's redesign is a lie. The long coat and fantasy armor is a good alternative to the speedster's skintight running suit, and the smoky, otherworldly aura adds to his sense of speed and power.
He's not a character that many fans take seriously, but this design is just intimidating enough to make him cool and land the final spot on the list. Bet you didn't see that coming.
What do you think of these X-Men redesigns? Leave a comment below, and tell us what you liked best!