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Marauders (comics)

The Marauders featured on the cover of Uncanny X-Men #240 (Jan. 1989). Art by Marc Silvestri.
Publication information
Publisher Marvel Comics
First appearance Uncanny X-Men #210 (Oct. 1986)
Created by Chris Claremont
John Romita, Jr.
Dan Green
In-story information
Base(s) Various
Member(s) Current Members:
Former Members:
Lady Mastermind
Mister Sinister
Omega Sentinel

The Marauders is a team of fictional supervillain characters in comic books published by Marvel Comics. The Marauders are mutant assassins employed by the X-Men archfiend Mister Sinister, with the purpose of assassination of other mutants, and act in unison as a commando strike-force to carry out acts of mass murder.

Publication history

The Marauders first appeared in Uncanny X-Men #210 (Oct. 1986) and were created by writer Chris Claremont and artist John Romita, Jr..

Fictional team biography

The Marauders make their first appearance during the 1986 crossover, the "Mutant Massacre", slaughtering a large percentage of the mutant community living beneath Manhattan known as the Morlocks. During their battles with the X-Men, X-Factor and the Norse God Thor, several Marauders are apparently killed; Riptide in Uncanny X-Men #211; Prism in X-Factor #10; and Blockbuster in The Mighty Thor #374. After the Mutant Massacre, Sabretooth attacked some kids in the tunnels in Daredevil #238.

In Uncanny X-Men #213, Sabretooth attacks Xavier's mansion while Malice succeeds in possessing Dazzler but is driven out.[1] The Marauders attack Polaris, whom Malice takes possession of and becomes leader over the Marauders.[2] The Marauders then try to assassinate Madelyne Pryor in issues #221-222. It also shows flashbacks of them in X-Factor #39, and Uncanny X-Men #215.

During the 1989 crossover "Inferno", the dead Marauders mysteriously reappear alive in Uncanny X-Men #240 and battle the X-Men during the demonic invasion of Manhattan. Most of them perish here. Blockbuster, Malice, and Sabretooth later attack the X-Men at Xavier's mansion in issue #243.

X-Men #34 (vol. 2, July 1994) reveals that Sinister is able to clone the Marauders back to life; Gambit #8 (vol. 3, Sept. 1999) further reveals that all the clones have gene imprints that would shut them down if they turn against Sinister. In Gambit #9, the clone samples for Sabretooth were seemingly destroyed. However, in later issues of X-Force,[3] a clone of Sabretooth was shown.

The Marauders also chase after the mutant Threnody in X-Man issues #13-18-19 (March-Sept. 1996).

The 1996 miniseries, The Further Adventures of Cyclops and Phoenix, features a band of criminals known as the Marauders during the 19th century, hired by Mister Sinister to kidnap homeless and deformed people on which to experiment.

Uncanny X-Men #350 (December 1997) reveals that it was Gambit who had organized the modern day Marauders, although he was never actually a member. It also says that it was he who brought them down to the Morlock tunnels. He had no idea of their intentions, and when they started killing all of them, all he could do is save a little girl named Sarah (later Marrow). This contradicts with previous versions of the story since in Uncanny X-Men #210, it was shown that the Marauders followed a young Morlock girl, Tommy. This is one of several contradictions between the two versions of the story.[4]

The Marauders also make an appearance in Cable Annual '99, disguised as minions of Apocalypse and battle Cable after he sees through the guise.

The Marauders return in X-Men #200 (vol. 2, August 2007), attacking the X-Men and Providence to obtain certain mutants on a list. This incarnation of the team consists of the original lineup as well as Malice, who possessed Omega Sentinel after disguising herself as an e-mail; the former X-Men Lady Mastermind; Sunfire; Gambit; and Mystique, who have all aligned themselves with Acolytes Exodus, Random, Frenzy, Tempo, and Unuscione.[5]

On the list is a group of people or places that have information of the future, or even alternate timelines. In Cable and Deadpool #42 and X-Men #200, Sunfire and Gambit seemingly killed Cable, while Senyaka attacked Deadpool. Also in X-Men #200, Riptide killed Quiet Bill, and Scalphunter and Vertigo killed the Witness. In issue #202, it is revealed that Arclight brought down the Wohnhaus Strucker, a building that has ties to the future. Also in issue #202, it is revealed that Harpoon impaled Vargas with harpoons until his death. The Dark Mother was another victim taken out. They also thought they killed Gateway, although he survived. Bishop was also sought after in these attacks. Later in issue #202, the Acolytes attack the X-Mansion looking for Destiny's diaries, but find fakes. They also go to take out Blindfold, but she saw them coming and prevented her death. In issue #203, Iceman and Cannonball go against the Marauders for the diaries, but the diaries are destroyed in the process.

The Marauders also play a major role in X-Men: Messiah Complex storyline. In Messiah Complex: Chapter One, they arrive in Alaska and kill some Purifiers with the loss of Blockbuster and Prism, without finding the special mutant child.[6] In X-Men #205, the Marauders battles the X-Men at Sinister's Antarctic base. In Uncanny X-Men #494, the Marauders track Cable and the baby to Forge's Aerie in Dallas, where they defeat Bishop and seize the mutant child. The Marauders fight in the final battle on Muir Island and Scrambler and Vertigo seemingly all die.[7]

The Marauders appeared once again in the ongoing series of X-Force, where a contingent of Marauders clones had recently awakened after the death of Mister Sinister. X-Force returns to the facility where Vanisher lost the virus and battle and killed all the cloned assassins.[3]

The Marauders returned in the pages of Astonishing X-Men, with a yet undetermined motive. The new lineup consists of: Arclight, Blockbuster, Harpoon, Prism, and Vanisher, with Chimera as the apparent new leader.[8] It was eventually revealed that they were actually assembled by Susan Hatchi, actually Da'o Coy Manh, the half-sister of the mutant known as Karma, so she could get her revenge on their father. They were eventually defeated.[9]

The clones of the Marauders except for Sabretooth where later hunted down by Magneto (who was determined to make them pay once and for all for the massacre of the Morlocks). However as Magneto killed each of the Marauder clones, new clones were activated. He eventually hunted all the clones down and killed them all with the exception of Scapulhunter, whose arms and legs were cut. After tracking the remained clones in a port and killing them all, Magneto prevented the new clones from being activated and instead modifies their personalities to deploy in the future at his command.[10]


Original roster

The Marauders featured on the X-Men #200 wrap-around cover, with art by Humberto Ramos. Several characters include Vertigo, Riptide, Sunfire, Harpoon, Scalphunter, Malice, Gambit and Lady Mastermind.
  • Arclight (Philippa Sontag): A super-strong mutant, her mutation allows her to release shockwaves (like Avalanche and Rictor) and cause disorientation to her enemies, cause objects to shatter, and to generate earth tremors in limited areas. She served with the American ground forces in the Vietnam War, and is still haunted by memories of that place. She has a romantic interest in Scalphunter.
  • Blockbuster (Michael Baer): A superhumanly strong mutant who has stood up to punches from Thor, though a single hammer blow from an enraged Thor killed him. He did some work with German terrorists before hooking up with Sinister.
  • Harpoon (Kodiak Noatak): A young Inuit who can charge objects (usually his Slayspears - 20 pound (9 kg) barbed harpoons) with bio-energy for various effects.
  • Malice: One of Sinister's top lieutenants whose sadistic orders are followed without hesitation or question. She exists as an incorporeal psychic being that possesses others, though she often 'hides' in the person's subconscious and reveals herself in a mirror or as the dark side of the target’s consciousness. For much of her public activity with the other Marauders, she used the X-Man Polaris as a host. Malice was apparently killed by Sinister for disobeying orders,[11] but has returned as a digital entity, rather than a psionic one, and possessed Omega Sentinel.[12] Not be confused with the Fantastic Four villain named Malice.
  • Prism: An overconfident and cold-blooded killer who often underestimates the fragility of his crystalline body, which can deflect/reflect most forms of energy attacks, but not physical impact.
  • Riptide (Janos Questad): A brutally evil man who can spin his body at superhuman speeds and fling out shurikens (made from a resin his skin secretes) for amazing amounts of damage. He was the first of the Marauders to "die", when his neck was broken by Colossus.
  • Scalphunter (John Greycrow): A ruthless ex-G.I., and the group’s tactician. His orders are overruled only by Malice or Sinister. Scalphunter is the most cold-blooded of the group. He is capable of "technomorphing" (altering the configuration of any technological device), a power he uses to create a number of weapons from his battle armor. He also has incredible regenerative powers as he survived being executed by his fellow American soldiers in 1944 after having murdered and scalped eight fellow officers.
  • Scrambler (Kim Il Sung): The youngest Marauder, is a Korean mutant who can manipulate powers and systems, whether they be biogenetic, electromagnetic, or even technomechanical, such as mutant abilities, upon physical contact. He has been shown to be a psychopath more concerned with looking stylish than with the suffering he inflicts on others.
  • Vertigo: A mutate who can psionically induce a sensation of vertigo in others.

Second roster

  • Hans: A creation of Mister Sinister while he was infiltrated at the Weapon X Program, at a time in which only Scalphunter remained loyal to Sinister. Even though he possessed a wide array of powers, he was nonetheless killed by Sabretooth. Hans was the first of Mister Sinister's creations dubbed The Children. He has no relation to the Children of the Vault.

Third roster

The Marauders in Messiah Complex. Art by Simon Bianchi.

During the Messiah Complex storyline, four former X-Men joined the original roster of the Marauders, and Sabretooth was not among the group.[volume & issue needed]

  • Gambit (Remy LeBeau): Before joining the X-Men, Gambit was hired by Sinister to assemble the Marauders. Feeling responsible for the deaths of hundreds of Morlocks, Gambit kept this a secret from the X-Men until Rogue absorbed his memories and found out Gambit's secret. His brainwashing by Apocalypse and manipulation by Sinister led him to abandon the X-Men, though he has since returned to the team.
  • Sunfire (Shiro Yoshida): A Japanese mutant and former X-Man with fire generation and manipulation abilities.

Forth roster

After the Schism storyline, two enemies of the X-Men joined the Marauders.[volume & issue needed]

  • Chimera: A former interdimensional pirate from an unknown Earth, who can generate dragon-shaped flares of greenish-transparent ectoplasmic energy to strike her enemies on various planes of being (i.e. physical, astral, etc.).
  • Vanisher (Telford Porter): Longtime criminal and former member of the X-Force, he possesses the ability to teleport himself, his clothes, and an as yet undetermined amount of additional mass.

Other versions

Age of Apocalypse

In the Age of Apocalypse storyline, the Marauders are a band of human terrorists equipped with wrist-armories and air-steppers, serving Apocalypse and consisting of Arcade, Dirigible, the Owl and Red. The group was sent by Apocalypse to destroy the land of Wakanda where Arcade was able to murder Black Panther and together destroy much of the land, the Marauders' life was cut short by Clint Barton and Gwen Stacy.[13]

House of M

In the House of M reality, the Marauders are a covert ops group led by Callisto and consisting of Banshee, Black Tom Cassidy, Blob, Caliban, Mammomax, Sunder, and T-Rex.

Mutant X

In the Mutant X dimension, a group of thieves calling themselves the Marauders are made up of mostly X-Force and Generation X associates, such as an overweight Cannonball, Jubilee, Husk, Sunspot and Wolfsbane.[14]

Ultimate Marvel

In the Ultimate Marvel universe, the Marauders appear in the Ultimate X-Men series and are a white supremacist group led by Arnim Zola.[15]

What If?

The Marauders are featured in What If? vol. 2, #101.

In other media


  • The Marauders as a group are not featured in X-Men. Sabretooth is a major recurring villain, but is usually seen working alone. Additionally, Mister Sinister's primary underlings are instead the Nasty Boys and the Savage Land Mutates. Vertigo belongs to the latter group and is later seen with the Nasty Boys in the "Beyond Good and Evil" storyline.
  • The Marauders first appear in the Wolverine and the X-Men episode "eXcessive Force". It consists of Arclight, Blockbuster, Harpoon, Mister Sinister, Multiple Man, and Vertigo. Like the comics, they tend to collect Mutant DNA by force for Mister Sinister's plans to create the "Ultimate Mutant." Cyclops ended up disrupting their missions at the time when Cyclops thought Mister Sinister had Jean Grey. In the episode "Guardian Angel", Mister Sinister transforms Angel into Archangel as a way to restore his wings. Archangel becomes a full Marauder in the episode "Shades of Grey" in which he and the other Marauders (namely Arclight, Blockbuster, and Vertigo) are captured but escape. The final scene showed that Mister Sinister and the Marauders are in league with Apocalypse.

Video games

  • The Marauders appear in the Deadpool video game. The group is led by Mister Sinister and consists of Vertigo, Riptide, Blockbuster, and Arclight.[16]


  1. ^ Uncanny X-Men #213-214
  2. ^ Uncanny X-Men #219
  3. ^ a b X-Force vol. 3, #9
  4. ^ "UXN Presents... The Wolverine Event!". Retrieved 2013-08-30. 
  5. ^ "UXN Presents... The Wolverine Event!". Retrieved 2013-08-30. 
  6. ^ X-Men: Messiah Complex #1
  7. ^ Uncanny X-Men #494
  8. ^ Astonishing X-Men vol. 3, #48
  9. ^ Astonishing X-Men vol. 3, #50
  10. ^ Magneto vol. 3 #6
  11. ^ X-Factor #105
  12. ^ X-Men (vol. 2) #200
  13. ^ X-Universe #1
  14. ^ Mutant X #26
  15. ^ Ultimates Annual #2
  16. ^ "The Marauders Confirmed for Deadpool Video Game". Retrieved 2013-08-30. 

External links