When you think of Marvel Comics, your head is filled with instantly recognizable superheroes and villains. Characters like Spider-Man, Wolverine and Captain America have been published in comic books for decades with very few changes to their iconic designs; and just like the heroes that they spend their days fighting, Marvel has some great looking villains as well. Classic baddies like Loki and Doctor Doom have managed to look cool while trying to take over the world for years and even later characters like Venom don’t let their decade drag down their sense of style.
Unfortunately, not every evil-doer gets to look good while committing questionable acts; some pull the short straw in the wardrobe department, some are stuck with lame mutations and some are just plain ugly — getting punched in the face repeatedly can do that to you. Whereas there are a fair share of daft looking bad guys who debuted in the early days of Marvel (we’re looking at you, Paste-Pot Pete) and countless embarrassing character designs from the ’90s, the ’00s bred a special kind of awful-looking supervillain: here are those 15 guys and gals who would be better off left out of those supervillain selfies.
Astonishing X-Men‘s Ord has the rare honor of both looking terrible and having a stupid name (in fairness, he is an alien, but still — ORD) with an odd metal nose-bar and ridiculous ponytail, Ord looked really, really bad even before his face was lit on fire by Lockheed the dragon.
The combination of green skin and silver armor does not work in this X-villain’s favor and his red cape just adds to an already overcrowded design, sure, he carries a pretty cool circular sword, but that just isn’t enough to make up for his offensive appearance. It’s no wonder that Ord was such a short-lived character, let’s be honest with ourselves: is a supervillain with eye-whiskers really one we want to be reading about?
If you read Amazing Spider-Man during the Brand New Day era you will have been treated to many bad-looking villains and with the series was being published three times a month for a good few years, who can blame the writers and artists for occasionally lapsing in creativity when it came to their super-criminal design; but a pregnant goblin? That is something we’ll never un-see.
Menace’s weird goblin-child saga aside, her costume is atrocious, ranging from a pink jumper to black body armor in later appearances, with a change in skin color to accommodate her wardrobe change. Menace was a main player in Spider-Man’s life during the ’00s but has faded into the obscurity in recent years and in all honesty, we’re in no rush to her again soon.
13. BLACK WOMB
With a name like Black Womb, you know this villain is going to have a dark backstory but putting aside her sordid, child-experimenting past, this aged mutant’s appearance is anything but appealing. Now nobody can help the way they look (especially fictional characters), but wearing a revealing black dress when you’ve been alive since the 19th century just seems like a poorly-thought out fashion choice.
If her dress sense wasn’t frightening enough, Black Womb’s scarred skin and huge teeth make for a terrifying villain, and not in a good way; it’s hard to believe that our visually-pleasing friend Cyclops is descended from this evil-doer, that said, the Summers family tree has yielded more than its fair share of awful-looking Marvel characters over the past few decades.
12. THE HOOD
So if you’ve heard The Hood’s name, you’ve pretty much seen him — he wears a cloak with a big hood on. A magic-powered crime boss (these are comics, after all), the Hood’s costume is pretty much as unimaginative as they get, and his name does him no favors either; with such a weak name/costume combination, it is truly impressive that The Hood was able to assemble such a large criminal empire: imagine taking orders from a gangster in a billowing robe.
The Hood was quite a big character in the Marvel Universe during the ’00s, but like many of the ‘super’ villains on this list, has gradually faded into the background, doomed to an occasional appearance when a writer with a good memory remembers he exists.
11. MA GNUCCI
Ma Gnucci is an angry, angry woman; the head of the Gnucci crime family and enemy of the Punisher, this elderly mobster spends her days yelling at her subordinates and literally never cracking a smile. Had ol’ Ma known she’d cross paths with the Frank Castle in the future, she may have stayed away from organised crime, as after their first encounter the Punisher angers two polar bears to aid his escape (comics set in zoos are always winners) which then attack Gnucci, leaving her to continue her evil mission (although not for long) missing both arms and legs.
Another product of Brand New Day era Amazing Spider-Man, Freak is just a car crash of a supervillain. A drug addict who attempts to steal from Aunt May’s soup kitchen and ends up injecting himself with animal genes while chasing a fix, this is someone who really doesn’t promote a lot of sympathy. Freak mutates into a horrific hybrid creature, really living up to his name as he stalks the streets of Manhattan eventually further mutating and, of course, fighting Spider-Man.
While there’s no denying Freak has a pretty original origin (despite stealing his mutation cocktail from Curt Connors, aka The Lizard) his visual design is just poor, ranging from zombie-type creature to Serpent Squad reject, on a good day Freak is just a barely thought-of entry in Spider-Man’s rogues gallery.
It could be argued that a character as little known as Cache may not deserve a place on this list when there are so many more deserving candidates out there, and while a high-profile villain he ain’t, Cache more than earns his place here with his garish sense of ‘style’. A supercomputer come to life, it feels like Cache had so much potential while in the design stage, yet his two-tone blue and green armor seems like it would have been right at home amongst some of the more offensive inventions of ’90s comics a decade earlier.
8. GODKILLER (SUPER SKRULL)
One has to respect a villain that can take on both Thor and the Warriors Three, and the Godkiller Super Skrull is part of that elite club. Bred specifically to destroy the God of Thunder during the alien Skrulls’ Secret Invasion of Earth, nobody can doubt this supervillain’s power (it took Thor dropping the whole of Asgard on top of her to stop her), her fashion sense however leaves a lot to be desired.
Tight purple spandex is very rarely a good idea, but combined with an awful haircut, a garish silver headpiece and a belly bigger than Volstagg’s (well, almost bigger), Godkiller’s outfit comes alive in a really horrific way; illustrating that no matter your power level, there’s no substitute for a little style.
7. FUNNY FACE
Now, don’t get me wrong, clowns will always be always creepy, however in the medium of comic books clown-themed villains have been somewhat overdone (we’re looking at you, Mistah J) and Funny Face most certainly falls into the category of ‘clown-themed’. Facing off against Spider-Girl in an alternate reality during the early ’00s (and really more of a jester/clown hybrid) this brightly-colored villain fits the bill when it comes to committing circus-related evil; disregard for human life? Check. Playful, gimmicky weaponry? Check. Garish outfit? Double check.
While it’s highly doubtful anyone would argue that Funny Face is especially original or interesting, we can all agree that his costume is pretty dreadful; an uninspired wardrobe for an uninspiring bad guy: and all that green — eugh.
6. THE VULTURE (JIMMY NATALE)
When you picture the Vulture do you see an old, bald man in a fur-collared wing-suit? Well, I do. In 2009, Amazing Spider-Man introduced a brand new vulture and he was young, ugly and had a full head of hair: a somewhat shocking change to the status quo of Spider-Man’s bird themed enemies. A mob enforcer turned cannibal monster, Jimmy Natale takes the name Vulture to a whole new level and even vomits acid onto his foes when in a tight spot (birds do that, right?) and although his costume isn’t especially bad, his hideous facial appearance more than makes up for it.
Now nobody likes to make fun of the genetically modified, but when given the choice between flesh-eating, acid-spewing Jimmy and good old elderly grump Adrian Toomes, we’d take the green over the red any day. Heck, we’d even take Michael Keaton over this guy.
How could the physical manifestation of the X-Men’s Danger Room ever look as cool as we’d imagine it in our heads? A walking, talking training simulation, Danger grew tired of helping our favourite team of mutants keep in tip-top shape and broke free from the X-Mansion; fulfilling every computer’s dream by gaining sentience to become a supervillain; it’s just a pity she didn’t spend a bit more time thinking about what she wanted to look like in the real world before her big move.
Not far from a blue version of Warlock, it’s a surprise that Danger didn’t debut in the ’90s, as her dramatic hairstyle and jagged edges would have fit right in with the visual style of that questionable era in comic book history.
Yep, that’s right, Typeface. Another enemy of Spider-Man’s (he just seems to attract some stinkers) this unfortunate individual turned to a life of crime when, after returning from a war in which his brother was killed, his wife leaves him and he is eventually fired from his job as a sign-maker. Bad luck doesn’t really seem to cover what this ex-soldier went through, but that’s still no excuse to take it out on the world by wearing such a stupid costume.
Maybe it was his name that damned him, maybe it was his origin, but in all honestly, a villain called Typeface was never going to look good; with letters stuck all over his body and Mortal Kombat-style dungarees (think MK 3 Sub-Zero) it’s a surprise he made it past the drawing board.
One of the Hulk’s Warbound (a group of outcasts befriended by him while on the planet Sakaar) Miek is an insectoid alien with all sorts of daddy issues. Forced to fight in a gladiatorial arena alongside the Jade Giant, Miek ended up travelling with him and the Warbound back to Earth to declare war on the superhero community where it was revealed that he had known about the plot which ended up killing the Hulk’s wife; ugly actions from an ugly character.
Once small and feeble, Miek underwent a metamorphosis back on his home planet, transforming him into the hideous creature his is today; and although you can currently see him in cinemas in Thor: Ragnarok, don’t expect to catch him on any hottest-actors-of-the-year lists any time soon.
Overdrive is a joke. No, we’re not being cruel here, based on his history in the pages of Amazing Spider-Man and The Superior Foes of Spider-Man, it is pretty clear that this particular villain was created with little hope of him being taken seriously as an actual threat. Overdrive sports the highly enviable skill of being able to modify vehicles instantly (kind of like a superpowered Xzibit) usually turning them into suitable getaway cars from various crimes; given this fact, he definitely has the outfit to match.
Now it’s not that Overdrive’s costume is especially ugly, it just looks dull; like old bike leathers with a few attachments; and with so many well-dressed bad guys out there, he would never stand out in any hero’s rogues gallery.
1. MARVEL ZOMBIES
If you were reading Marvel comics in the ’00s, it’s extremely unlikely that you wouldn’t have run into some iteration of Marvel Zombies. Pretty much explained by the title, this series and its subsequent sequels focuses on an alternate dimension where pretty much every Marvel character has been turned into a flesh-eating monster: business as usual in the world of comics.
While zombies are never going be attractive, seeing our favourite heroes devouring human flesh just ain’t pretty, and given that they’ve taken to eating people (no Spider-Man, not Mary Jane!), we feel pretty safe in describing them as villains. The Marvel Zombies are good-looking by no definition, but given their popularity, the ex-heroes of Earth-2149 will most likely be sticking (in some cases, literally) around for years to come.
Which of these Marvel villains from the ’00s do you think is the worst? Let us know in the comments!
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