The daughter of one Lord Kinross, Moira MacTaggert or Moira Kinross as she was known at the time was born in Scotland. Moira met and fell in love with Charles Xavier also known as Professor X, at Oxford University, as a graduate student. She had been granted a scholarship to study genetics at the prestigious university. However, despite her love for Charles and a promise to wait for him she was forced by her father to marry a politician named Joseph MacTaggert and broke off her engagement with Xavier while he was fighting in the Korean War. Joseph was an abusive husband, beating her and then finally raping her. There after she would have a son named Kevin, who would become a mutant menace with the ability to alter reality at will. Moira had kept her pregnancy a secret and when Joseph refused to divorce her, she made people believe she was a widow. Moira was the operator of a high-tech Mutant Research Center on Muir Island, and it was the largest most advanced facility of its kind and was owned and operated by a private individual.
At one point in time she used the facility to do genetic research and confine her son Kevin (and mutants she and Prof. X considered to be dangerous), who was later named Proteus when his powers had become uncontrollable. At the research center she continued to research the human/mutant genetics genome, all while hoping to eventually find a cure for her son. Moira also adopted an orphaned mutant named Rahne Sinclair, who would later be known as Wolfsbane. Moira is a leading expert in the study of genetics, specializing in superhuman genetics and mutant genetics, even having earned a Nobel Prize for her work. Moira is the co creator of Cerebro, and had considerable involvement and contribution to Xavier's Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters. At one stage, Moira had and operated her own school for young mutants in collaboration with Charles Xavier, her students being Vulcan, Sway, Petra and Darwin. However during a rescue mission for Xavier's students they were tragically killed in action. The event so traumatic that Charles made his own choice to suppress the memories of the event and students, making it as if no one knew what had really happened.
Moira MacTaggert is a Marvel comics character commonly associated with the X-Men franchise. She was created by writer Chris Claremont and artist Dave Cockrum, first appearing in Uncanny X-Men #96 released in 1975.
A major theme of the X-Men is exploring the interactions between two groups that hold significant differences, as much if not more than the similarities possessed by both groups. Whilst the X-Men franchise traditionally focus on mutant characters, and their plight trying to integrate with humans peacefully, throughout the books franchise more human characters lacking powers have become an important angle to explore. Moira MacTaggert has been one of the chief X-Men characters in this respect, her contributions to the X-Men despite lacking powers of particular note, as is also the many various characters that she contributed to over time influencing their development as much as her own. Arguably X-Men's most prominent non mutant character. She is intertwined with two of the franchises most important characters, having shared a romance with Professor X in his younger days and having genetically tampered with X-Men antagonist Magneto.
During the 2000's a significant story arc, X-Men: Deadly Genesis, in a retcon, introduced substantial additional history and events into not only Moira's history but the history of all the X-Men and Professor X, when it was revealed that between Xavier's first squad of X-Men and second set, otherwise known as the international X-Men, there was another squad, of students that were trained primarily by Moira and including a brother to Scott and Alex Summers, Gabriel Summers. However this squad of X-Men had tragically met their demise attempting to rescue the first squad of X-Men. This was shown to affect Moira significantly, and the in story method of explaining how almost all of this had been forgotten for decades that had passed, was that Professor X had used his telepathy to suppress al memories concerning this students. Grant Morrison had wished to use Moira in his run of New X-Men, however her death in prior stories and the temporarily Marvel policy on not reviving dead characters meant that he could not, and so the writer substituted his planned role with her to the character Beast.
Major Story Arcs
MacTaggert was a partner in founding Xavier Institute for Higher Learning and was the co-creator of Cerebro. She had met the X-Men when Xavier called her to become the mansion's housekeeper. There, she met Sean Cassidy ( Banshee), and formed an on-off relationship with him for the rest of her life. Proteus had escaped and was killed by Colossus. Banshee stopped her from cloning him, but saved his DNA so she could clone him one day in the future. MacTaggert also disliked the thought of Xavier opening up a new school for the new generation of mutants called the New Mutants, with MacTaggert's foster child Rahne being one of them.
With the apparent death of the X-Men, MacTaggert and Banshee formed their own team when the X-Men were missing. MacTaggert however, was not her usual self, exerting herself as selfish, short-tempered and making harsh decisions. She even made the newly assembled alternative X-Men team battle against each other mercilessly, in order to study mutants in action. It was then revealed that Muir Island was being possessed by the Shadow King, but Xavier would go on free them from King's mental control.
When Magneto discovered that MacTaggert had tampered with his free will, he took her hostage and forced her to do this to half of the X-Men. However, it was revealed that the X-Factor which brought out the mutant abilities in the X-Men reversed the effects of the experiment, which meant that Magneto had been doing things of his own free will the entire time. On Astroid M, MacTaggert was held hostage and witnessed Fabian Cortez acting forcefully manipulative towards Magneto and draining his life force.
Moira volunteered to work as a geneticist on Genosha over an unknown virus. When she returned to Earth and discovered Magik was carrying the same disease to, she identified it as the Legacy Virus. She returned to Muir Island after Magik died hoping to find a cure for this ravaging and fatal disease. Excalibur then lived with MacTaggert on Muir Island where she became an official member of the group as a medic and all around warming presence. She later revealed she was in fact infected with the Legacy Virus too. It is unknown how she contracted disease, but possible reasons are her prolonged exposure to the virus on Genosha, giving birth to a mutant, or during her initial autopsy of Magik. However, she continued to live her life and continued with her role in Excalibur. She locked herself in a quarantine attempting to cure herself, but it was foiled by Wolfsbane and Douglock, as Wolfsbane wanted to carry on her mother's work yet Douglock had caused a lot of unintentional damage because of his personal feelings towards Wolfsbane.
Moira did find a cure, but Mystique had the virus target only humans. Then, along with Sabretooth, they destroyed Muir Island. Bishop, Wolverine and Rogue tried to save MacTaggert's life. Using her absorbing powers, Rogue had temporary medical knowledge, but even that could not save MacTaggert from the fatal infection. However, she was able to use her powers to let MacTaggert and Xavier speak with each other for one last time. After her telepathic conversation with her one true love, MacTaggert died. As a ghost, she has directed Banshee to a hidden room full of videos and has been a part of Xavier's mind. When the Chaos King temporarily disrupted death, several X-Men, including Banshee, were temporarily restored to life. Moira was likewise revived, and assisted these "Dead X-Men" in battling the Chaos King's minions, before the entire group returned to the afterlife.
Powers and Abilities
Moira MacTaggert is considerably bright, and possesses extensive knowledge and expertise in her chosen field of scientific study genetics. Considered one of the foremost experts on al things genetics, Moira's speciality is with regards to superhuman genetics. Moira has earned a Nobel Prize in Physiology. She is otherwise ordinary, having the fitness and strength level of a female her age and size who engages in regular exercise and fitness.
In Age of Apocalypse She is named Moira Trask after she is married to Bolivar Trask. They are part of Human High Council, the counterpart of Apocalypse´s mutant forces, along with Emma Frost (lobotomized), Mariko Yashida and Brian Braddock.
She seems to be the leader of the resistance and was the one to receive Weapon X and Jean Grey´s message, that warned of Apocalypse preparing a massive massacre of the remaining humans on earth. They decided to attack Apocalypse with nuclear bombs in North America using Gateway´s abilities to create transdimensional wormholes.
In this reality Moira was a Nazi. Whilst travelling on a train she was transported to Earth-616. She was then under watch as the team Excalibur went to find out what had happened and recover their own Moira. This event led up to the Excalibur Story arc, "Cross-Time Caper."
In this Universe Moira MacTaggert is the ex-wife of Professor Charles Xavier and the mother of his child: Proteus. She runs a hospital for sick and dying mutants in Scotland. She divorces Xavier after he leaves her to chase the dream of a mutant utopian society alongside Magneto in the Savage Land, before they became enemies. When Proteus escapes from the hospital and begins jumping from body to body, quickly burning each one out, she calls in the X-Men for assistance. This leads to a battle of epic proportions that endangers hundreds of people and leads to the death of Agent Betsy Braddock from the British Secret Service. Proteus body-hopped into Betsy's body while she was using her powers to help Professor X search for him and he goes on to use her powers to kill many people. She was able to momentarily wrest control from him and begged Professor X to kill her, he wouldn't, so Colossus did the job for him.
It is later discovered by the X-Men that Moira had been procuring funding for her hospital by making and selling the drug Banshee, a lethal and addictive drug that enhances mutant powers and was somehow derived from experiments on Wolverine by Magneto and Professor Xavier during their time in the Savage Land. Wolverine tries to destroy her supply and she fights back with an up to now unknown mutant power, a deafening sonic cry very similar to that of the drug's namesake. She is quickly defeated by Wolverine, despite her sonic cry, and is left for dead in the exploding hospital. Quicksilver finds her emerging from the ruins of the hospital, how she survived is unknown, but their conversation alludes to the fact that she is now working with Magneto
We meet House of M Moira during the Exiles' world tour. During the House of M, Moira was seen working on a cure for her son's mutation. This research into curing mutation was seen as potentially threatening by the King Magneto and he has Sentinels dispatched to Muir Island. Both Moira and her son escaped and he went on to become the sociopathic serial killer known as Mutant X. Moira helps the Exiles track down Mutant X, who at this point is living in the body of Beak's girlfriend, Angel. A huge fight ensues and Moira shoots her son, who has a weakness to metal (one of his only weaknesses), forcing him to abandon the host body that he was using and seek out a new one. He attempts to posses his mother's body, but she chooses death over that and shoots herself in the head.
In Other Media
X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)
Moira is played by Olivia Williams in several cameos throughout X-Men: The Last Stand. She first appears in a video for Xavier's Ethics class. She talks about what is considered right and wrong, such as whether it would be right to transfer the mind of a dying father of four into the body of a man born with no higher brain functions. Later, after the death of Xavier she is shown sitting next to beast at his funeral; sobbing.
After the film's ending credits, she appears again for a brief scene, where it appears that Xavier has transferred his mind into the body of the patient following his physical body being destroyed by Jean Grey. In the director's commentary for the movie's DVD, it is revealed that this patient is, in fact, the identical twin of Xavier, whose mind had been destroyed before birth by the power of Charles' mutation. Thus it is that Charles' voice is used and Moira instantly recognizes him. Xavier's twin is Cassandra Nova.
X-Men: First Class (2011)
In the 2011 film X-Men First Class Moira plays a much larger role then she had in the previous X-Men movie. In this film Moira MacTaggert is a CIA agent who while undercover, sees members of the Hellfire club use their powers to manipulate Colonel Hendry of the US Army into supporting the placement of nuclear missiles in Turkey. Once Moira realizes these mutants' plan is to start World War III, she seeks out Charles Xavier for his knowledge and prowess on mutant genetics and introduces him and "sister" Raven ( Mystique) to the CIA. Eventually Charles, Raven, and Charles new mutant friend Erik join the CIA and Moira, and recruit mutants to help stop Sebastian Shaw from having his plans come to fruition . Moira helps the mutants throughout the film, and at the end helps Xavier set up his school for the gifted. Moira is also responsible for giving the X-Men their name. Moira is portrayed by actress Rose Byrne.
X-Men: The Animated Series (1992)
Moira was played/voiced by Lally Cadeau in the few episodes of X-men the Animated Series that she appeared in.
Marvel Anime: X-Men (2010)
Moira is modified to suit a Marvel anime version of the X-Men, the character of Yui Sasaki is for all intents and purposes Moira MacTaggert. She is voiced by Yoshiko Sakakibara in the Japanese version and Gwendoline Yeo in the English version.