Who is the X-Men’s worst villain? Which mutant is responsible for the most mayhem, the most bloodshed, the most destruction? I’ll give you a clue: he’s slated to appear as a super-hero in the next X-Men movie, he’s currently the Player versus Player Adamantium Award in Avengers Alliance, and he’s also back as a member of Psylocke’s X-Force. Yes, I’m talking about Bishop!
When Bishop was first introduced, we saw the kind of ‘aggressive policing’ he was used to handing out. Policing in Bishop’s era was a simple matter; if the bad guys resist arrest, lethal force is ready and waiting. Although Bishop let the X-Men soften him up, that kind of mentality had been drummed into him from an early age.
And then, in Messiah CompleX, Bishop saw everything come to a head. A child he believed would be entirely responsible for his nightmare world was born, and the only chance to stop her was to kill her. But he failed, and the infant Hope was taken into the future by Cable.
That’s when it gets rather fascinating. The moment he removed Hope from the present day, Cable created an alternate timeline – one where Hope never returned. The second he and Hope returned to the twenty-first century, that timeline was aborted. But when Bishop saw it, well, his conclusions were pretty wild…
So, we’ve got a timeline that Bishop refuses to see as real, and a baby he believes needs to be killed. Collateral damage is suddenly no object. Bishop’s response is to steal deadly weapons and use them on entire continents. Yeah, seriously, to get at the baby he wipes out the world. We saw it best in the Messiah War prologue (he’s telling lies to Stryfe in the voice-overs, by the way).
The fact is, Bishop’s madness took him a long way from being a hero. He was personally responsible for obliterating life across an entire timeline. And you want to know the real irony?
He was wrong.
On the most basic point of logic, he was completely, utterly wrong. Think about it: this timeline was created because Hope was taken and had not returned. This timeline’s potentiality ceased to be the moment Cable and Hope returned to the twenty-first century. So if Bishop had succeeded in killing Hope, he would have set this timeline in stone. Only the fact he failed means the world still has a future at all.
Wow. Way to be a super-villain, Bishop.