Chris Claremont returned to write a prelude to the iconic original run of Excalibur in X-Men Legends #12 this month, focused on two of the team’s most powerful members, Nightcrawler and Kitty Pryde. Excalibur has featured some of the most powerful beings in the entire Marvel Universe on its varied rosters over the years, including heavyweights like Phoenix and the Juggernaut.
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The current incarnation of the team features a new Captain Britain in Besty Braddock, extraordinarily powerful as one of the guardians of the multiverse. Though the team generally exists outside the traditional power structure of the world of the X-Men, Excalibur has nevertheless been the home of some of its most powerful characters fighting some of its biggest battles across infinite dimensions.
10 Captain Britain (Brian Braddock)
Brian Braddock is one of the strongest characters in the X-Men family, though he isn’t a mutant. He originally derived his superhuman strength, agility, and stamina from the Amulet of Right, an ancient relic that confers on him the title of Captain Britain.
In later incarnations of the character his strength and purpose come from his being a product of Otherworld, an alternate dimension key to his greater role as a member of the Captain Britain Corps tasked with defending the entire multiverse in Marvel Comics.
Nightcrawler is able to teleport enormous distances, as well as carry people with him, making him easily one of the most powerful members of the original Excalibur from the late 80s. His teleportation ability is just one of his many skills, though.
Kurt Wagner is also one of the best martial artists in the Marvel Universe, an expert swordsman with a flair for the dramatic. His incredible agility and acrobatic skill rank him among the best fighters among the X-Men and in all of Marvel Comics.
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8 Moira MacTaggert
Moira MacTaggert is one of the most powerful and one of the most complex members of Excalibur. She has the ability to resurrect after death and retain all of her memories of past lives, an ability she has exploited to mold the history of mutants.
Moira was a member of the team during the early 90s when she used her extraordinary intelligence to help combat the mutant virus. Back then, she was seemingly human but has since been revealed to be a powerful mutant hero and villain in some of the best X-Men comics of the 2010s.
7 Captain Britain (Betsy Braddock)
The current Captain Britain of Earth-616 is one of the most powerful variants of the character. Betsy Braddock is also charged with defending Otherworld and the multiverse and possesses all the strength and durability of any of the Captains Britain.
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Betsy is also one of the most powerful telepaths in the Marvel Universe, perhaps even the equal of Omega Level mutants like Jean Grey. Her power most often takes the iconic form of a psychic knife or sword, which she wields in battle to devastating effect.
Rogue is one of the strongest X-Men in the Marvel Universe, potentially without limits. Her mutant ability to acquire the powers and abilities of another person simply by touching them provided most of the alien strength and power of Carol Danvers in their first battle.
Rogue is also able to combine the powers of numerous people at once, as she’s done on occasion in the comics. This potentially makes her nearly infinite in power depending on who she is drawing abilities from, so long as she’s able to maintain control.
Meggan is a shapeshifter, able to assume the form of anyone she sees. This is accentuated by her powerful empathy. Meggan can unconsciously mimic the look and even moods of others simply by picking up on their emotions.
Beyond this, Meggan is able to mimic the powers of others. She’s able to do this in a way Rogue struggles with. Meggan typically doesn’t struggle to control these powers and doesn’t run any risk of harm to herself or others in doing so, unless she’s fighting supervillains.
Juggernaut menaced Excalibur in issue #3 of the first volume, but he was part of the second incarnation of the group years later. Juggernaut is one of the most powerful beings on Earth-616, granted near invulnerability by the Gem of Cyttorak.
He is essentially immortal and unstoppable when powered by the magical gem, with unlimited strength and stamina. He has proven his overwhelming might against the X-Men and many other Marvel superheroes over the years.
Apocalypse is one of the most intelligent, cunning, and cruel supervillains in the Marvel Universe. He is also one of the most powerful, with unheralded strength, durability, and stamina he obtained by exploiting the technology of the Celestials.
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Apocalypse was an unlikely member of Excalibur early in the Krakoan era, where he continued to add to his already impressive skill set by learning and practicing magic, experimenting with the organic properties of the living island, and reuniting Krakoa with Arrako.
2 Kitty Pryde
Kitty Pryde is one of the most intelligent characters in Marvel Comics and an essential asset to Excalibur. She’s also incredibly powerful, with the ability to phase through solid matter either on her own or in tandem with other people.
This power has grown significantly in modern comics, with some of Kitty Pryde’s most powerful variants able to phase through the entire universe and in the case of the Black Vortex, through all of time and space at once, making her almost god-like in power.
1 Rachel Summers
As the host to the Phoenix Force, Rachel Summers is the strongest member of Excalibur–and was one of the most powerful cosmic beings in the Marvel Universe. She was able to fly up to light speed in space, unleash unimaginable bursts of energy, and also manipulate matter and energy.
Even without the Phoenix Force, she is one of the most powerful telepaths and telekinetics in existence. She is able to ‘chronoskim,’ allowing her to manipulate time enough to send her own psyche or others back in time, the key to the plot of the classic X-Men story Days of Futures Past.
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About The Author
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DARBY HARN is the author of the novels Ever The Hero, The Judgment Of Valene, and A Country Of Eternal Light. His short fiction appears in Strange Horizons, Interzone, Shimmer, and other venues.
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