When Wolverine debuted in 1974, he wasn’t the unstoppable force of nature that future stories would present him to be. True, he had claws and could heal quickly, but he didn’t quite have that killer instinct. Wolverine talked a big game but hadn’t had the opportunity to really back it up. In 1980, he would finally get his chance to prove himself to readers.
In the middle of Chris Claremont and John Byrne’s Dark Phoenix Saga, the X-Men had all been captured by the Hellfire Club. Wolverine, thought to be dead, had been dumped into the sewers. Although Uncanny X-Men #133 featured Wolverine stalking his way back inside the Hellfire Club, taking out many of the Club’s bodyguards along the way, it was the final page of #132 that was most memorable. Wolverine, though battered and hurting, began to unleash his rage. This moment helped make Wolverine a true fan favorite and propelled his stories for the next 30 years.