Magneto from Marvel’s X-Men is the Master of Magnetism, which would ultimately suggest he’s also the master of all metals, right? Well, as it seems, it’s not that simple. Magneto is the master of ALMOST all metals. I’m saying almost because he’s had trouble manipulating vibranium in the past. However, he’s done it several times as well, so the question is, can Magneto control vibranium?
Magneto can control vibranium only if it’s not pure – in an alloy with another metal. He can manipulate Captain America’s shield because it’s not pure vibranium but a vibranium alloy. However, when faced with pure vibranium, Magneto’s powers stop serving him.
We’ve seen that in a fight against Black Panther, whose suit is purely made out of vibranium. Magneto’s powers didn’t work. Vibranuim is an alien metal with unfathomable mystical properties. So, can Magneto even control other alien metals, or is he strictly limited to metals found on Earth? Let’s find out.
Can Magneto Control All Metals?
As the master of magnetism, Magneto can control every object with magnetic properties. That, of course, includes all metals, seeing that one of the main properties of (almost) all metals is magnetism.
Now, Magneto’s powers go beyond just metals. Being the master of magnetism, he can also control all electromagnetic fields, including the Earth’s gravitational force, electromagnetic and neural biochemistry in a human body, etc.
As you probably noticed, once again, I’ve said “almost” all metals. We’ve seen Magneto control everything from iron to aluminum. He even managed to control some extraterrestrial metals such as uru. However, one particular metal gives him trouble, and that’s vibranium.
Before we get into that a bit further, many fans wonder – if Magneto can fly by manipulating Earth’s magnetic fields, can he also move non-metallic objects?
Can Magneto Control Non-Metallic Objects?
Magneto can control non-metallic objects, but not with the precision or dexterity as metallic objects. You see, he can manipulate all electromagnetic fields – and the Earth’s electromagnetic field encapsulates the entire atmosphere.
So, Magneto can manipulate a fraction of that electromagnetic field around a certain object in a way to lift it or propel it in a certain direction. He could control a non-metallic object that way, but it would require much more focus and precision than controlling a metallic object that has magnetic properties itself.
Can Magneto Control Vibranium?
This question is so hard to answer without thorough research because it seems that, throughout comics history, the “relationship” between vibranium and Magneto’s powers was inconsistent, to say the least. Sometimes, he could control vibranium effortlessly – like Captain America’s shield, while sometimes, he was completely helpless against it. So, can Magneto control vibranium?
Well, the best answer is – partially. We’ve seen him fling Cap’s shield around like it’s nothing so many times that Steve just gave up on trying to use it against Magneto. Just recently, in 2019’s X-Men #1, he completely decimated a huge metal door made out of vibranium – ripped it out and tossed it aside.
And then, you get a situation from Black Panther #48 in 1998, where Magneto was completely helpless against Black Panther and his vibranium suit. T’Challa was able to run all the way up to Magneto and smack him in the face, and the master of magnetism couldn’t do anything to stop him. He even commented on his inability to do anything, as you can see in the scan below.
Back then, fans theorized that Magneto probably could control vibranium, too, but T’Challa used the advanced Wakandan technology to develop some sort of a gadget that would neutralize Magneto’s powers. And while that would certainly be plausible, the truth is much simpler. Magneto cannot control vibranium. He never could.
Look back at all those vibranium objects he controlled. Captain America’s shield’s basis is vibranium, but it’s mixed with other metals to get a vibranium alloy. The same thing goes for the huge vibranium door – it’s an alloy, not pure vibranium. On the other hand, the fibers in Black Panther’s suit are, indeed, pure vibranium, and Magneto can’t do anything against that.
Vibranium is a mystical, alien metallic ore that has unique, incredibly, but absolutely mysterious properties. It can store, harness, and burst out energy, absorb vibration, and be used in a million ways – which is why Wakanda is such an advanced country despite being cut off from the rest of the world.
While vibranium is a metallic ore, its properties are unique, unlike any other material that’s universally known. When Magneto controls vibranium alloys, he controls the other metals within the alloy, not the vibranium himself. That explains why, on some occasions, he could manipulate Cap’s shield, while on others, he could do nothing against T’Challa’s pure vibranium.
Can Magneto Control Adamantium?
Adamantium is another unique metallic element that can’t really be found in nature. Yet, Magneto can control it in almost any way he wants. We’ve seen it the most clearly in X-Men: Fatal Attractions crossover event, when he ripped Wolverine’s entire adamantium skeleton out on a whim. So, how can he control adamantium so easily but not vibranium?
Well, as we now know, Magneto can control vibranium alloys, and, if you didn’t know, adamantium is a vibranium alloy. It was artificially created by Dr. Maclain when he tried to synthesize steel and vibranium. The experiment failed but created adamantium, one of the strongest metals in existence, so I guess it didn’t completely fail.
Therefore, when Magneto controls adamantium, he actually controls the steel within the alloy, just like he does with Captain America’s shield. But what about alien metals that aren’t related to vibranium in any way?
Can Magneto Control Uru?
Uru metal is often mentioned in Marvel comics as another alien form of metal that also has unique properties and is stronger than the stuff we have on Earth. Uru metal is what Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir, was made from. So, can Magneto control uru?
Yes, he can. We’ve seen it numerous times when Magneto fought Thor. The God of Thunder would fling Mjolnir at Magneto with full force, and the master of magnetism would simply redirect it away from himself. That means he could wield Mjolnir, right? Well, not quite. He could maybe lift it or redirect it when Mjolnir is already in motion.
However, Mjolnir is enchanted by one of the most powerful gods in the Marvel universe, Odin. That means the hammer itself – including the uru it is made from – is much more powerful than the material alone.
Had Mjolnir not been enchanted, anybody, including Magneto, who’s strong enough to lift the weight of the metal, could wield Mjolnir. However, it’s not uru that makes Mjolnir impossible to wield to anyone unworthy; it’s the enchantment. Therefore, seeing Magneto isn’t worthy, he could lift any non-enchanted object made of uru and even redirect Mjolnir, but not wield it.