Marvel Comics is chock full of amazing and powerful heroes and villains; many have stood the test of time and continued on to this day. Superheroes are an important part to pop culture of any decade. They give us something to hope for and to inspire to. From Captain America to Spider-Man, these are the superheroes that help to define not just Marvel Comics, but also the best of us. These heroes are part of the reason why we keep returning to comics. Though without great villains to combat and oppose, these same stories would be for naught.
Every hero needs an equally mesmerizing antagonist and there are plenty of dangerous villains inhabiting the Marvel Universe. While those like Thanos and Loki receive plenty of attention, there are many equally dangerous and potentially captivating bad guys who don’t. Be it because they’ve died or have been forgotten, they deserve recognition. Besides, what’s death in the world of comic books? Many of these villains just need a clever line or two of dialogue to bring them back into comics. With the powers they possess, these rogues can easily bring many heroes to their knees. Today at CBR we’re looking at 15 of dangerous villains Marvel just won’t use.
Powerful and awe-inspiring enough to have a full-on event revolve around him, Onslaught is one of the mightiest villains to ever threaten the Earth. After Xavier used his telepathic powers to shut down Magneto’s mind, part of the latter’s darker aspects merged with Xavier’s subconscious and eventually grew into a separate persona known as Onslaught.
With nearly unrivaled power, Onslaught possessed the combined powers of Charles Xavier, Magneto, Nate Grey, and Franklin Richards, which meant he could manipulate reality and magnetic fields, but also had telepathy, telekinesis, energy projection, and he could even increase his size and strength. It took the combined forces of nearly every Earth-bound superhero to beat him, but not before the Avengers and the Fantastic Four died. There’ve been attempts to bring Onslaught back, or at least versions of him, but none were as impactful. Maybe one day Onslaught will return in all his horrible glory.
Magus is the evil doppelganger of Adam Warlock. He believed he was a god to be worshipped and that nearly everyone in the universe needed to die. Believing that good and evil are merely tools to force people into submission, he’d like nothing more than to give all sentient beings one choice: worship him or die. And with all the powers of Adam Warlock to back him up, he can very nearly make his wish come true.
With Infinity War coming out in theaters next year, and Adam Warlock certainly making an appearance, it’s difficult to imagine Marvel wouldn’t want to reintroduce the Magus. There’s every reason to, especially since he was partly responsible for the original Infinity War comic event. Regardless, even if Magus doesn’t show up in the movies, he’s still a great character with wonderful potential. For all his history, there’s plenty more to do with him.
The X-Men are notorious for having powerful enemies. Kevin MacTaggert, known as both Proteus and Mutant X, is unquestionably one of the X-Men’s mightiest foes. After his powers developed, they were so great that the psionic energies burnt up his body; his mother placed him in a chamber on Muir Island to protect himself and others from his powers. Unfortunately, thanks to Magneto, Proteus got out and all hell broke loose.
Fighting the X-Men multiple times, his powers only grew with each encounter. Eventually, it got to the point where Proteus could bend all of time and space and reality to his will, as he could create whatever world he wanted. He can also possess people, because obviously he wasn’t powerful enough. It’s uncertain where Proteus is these days, but it’s difficult to understand why Marvel wouldn’t bring back an Omega-level reality-warping mutant to threaten us all.
12 THE LEADER
One of the Hulk’s oldest antagonists, the Leader versus Hulk is always a contest of brawn against brains. While not physically imposing, Samuel Sterns is remarkably deadly, using his science and intellect to bring ruin to all who oppose him. Yet for all his intelligence and schemes, he’s never permanently beaten the Hulk, but the same could be said with the Hulk and how he can’t get rid of the Leader.
The Leader is one of those villains who are just waiting to have a massive event built around him. His mental acumen is so great that he possesses enhanced intuition, pattern and problem solving, and can predict outcomes of scenarios before they even occur. He’s well versed in technology and even has potent telepathic and telekinetic powers. Capable of making anything he imagines and then seeing every outcome, there’s no reason why Marvel should be holding back the Leader.
11 CAPTAIN AXIS
First appearing in The Incredible Hulk #155, Otto Kronsteig was originally one of Hitler’s best scientists. Somewhere along the way Dr. Doom appeared and tested a ridiculous machine on Kronsteig, which in turn transformed him into the villainous Captain Axis and shepherded away down into the Microverse. Capable of fighting the Hulk to a standstill, Captain Axis’s strength and endurance are pretty far out there.
Axis can physically exert himself for 24 hours before experiencing fatigue. Eventually, the Shaper of Worlds reverted Axis back to his human counterpart and we haven’t seen him since. Who knows, what with this being comics, all you need a kooky explanation for him to get his powers back. A Hulk-level threat existing in the Micorverse is quite threatening. Besides, who of you wouldn’t want to give Captain America a break from punching Nazis and turn that task over to the Hulk?
A native of the 31st Century, Michael Korvac was a computer technician on an alternate Earth. Because this is comics, Korvac was transported through time by the Grandmaster and forced to do battle with Doctor Strange and the Defenders. After the mishap, Korvac ended up downloading the knowledge of Galactus’s space station into himself and he became a living god.
From there, Korvac became virtually unbeatable. Harnessing the Power Cosmic, Korvac was capable of altering matter, energy projection, teleportation, and manipulating time and space. His power is so great it took the combined might of all the Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy to originally beat him. Even then, he returned, defeated every Avengers team but was in turn overcome by the heroes from Avengers Academy. Even though he was supposedly annihilated, it’d be easy to see Korvac return once more. A god doesn’t die so easily after all.
Being the God of Thunder,Thor is prone to attracting some mean customers. Infused with otherworldly strength, it’s not often Thor finds himself hopelessly outmatched. When it comes down to facing the monster known as Kurse, it becomes another matter entirely. There have been a couple Kurses running around and they’ve all been Dark Elves. Each one, especially Algrin the Strong, the original Kurse, was so powerful he beat Beta Ray Bill, Thor, and Loki.
Infused with magical enhancements and made even stronger, courtesy of the Beyonder, Kurse is roughly four times stronger than Thor. While that might not sound like a lot, when you’re dealing with Superman-level strength, a multiplier of four is terrifying. With a weakness to iron and virtually nothing else it should be only a matter of time before Kurse rears his/her ugly head again and proceeds to wreck Thor once more.
The Silver Surfer’s strength is almost beyond belief. Despite his gentle-looking frame, the Surfer is the host to immense power and has even beaten the Hulk without touching him. The Power Cosmic is nearly without limit and can be used in multiple ways. Thankfully, the Surfer uses his powers for good, but the cosmic villain known as Morg wasn’t as kind.
Originally serving as one of Galactus’ heralds, the Devourer of Worlds imbued the already-ruthless Morg with the Power Cosmic making him as strong as the Silver Surfer. However, Morg’s power grew beyond the Surfer or any previous herald of Galactus when he immersed himself in the Well of Life. A cosmic-level being, one greater than the Silver Surfer, would make for captivating reading. While Morg died during "Annihilation", that was nearly a decade ago and long-dead villains have come back in shorter order. Why not Morg?
Gabriel Summers was raised by the Shi’ar as a slave after his mother was murdered. Life didn’t get any better for Gabriel. Back when Professor Xavier needed a team to save his original X-Men from the mutant island Krakoa, he enlisted Vulcan and several others to save them. Nearly everyone on the team died and Vulcan ended up in suspended animation, left for dead. When he woke up, he wasn’t happy. An Omega-level mutant, Vulcan’s fought the X-Men, nearly conquered the Shi’ar Empire, and battled Black Bolt and the Inhumans.
Vulcan possess many abilities, including manipulating all forms of energy, to which Xavier claimed Vulcan was the most powerful energy manipulator he’d ever seen, super strength, flight, telekinesis, energy absorption, controlling others’ psionic abilities with his own powers, and he can control the seven elements. A match for other god-like beings like Onslaught, it’s even unclear if he can die.
Another classic Thor bad guy, Ymir first appeared in Journey Into Mystery #97 and is the most powerful out of all the Frost Giants and the oldest. Formed at the beginning of creation, Ymir is immortal and older than Odin. Insanely powerful, Ymir’s only real weakness is his blinding ambition towards destroying everything in creation. Back when Odin was younger, he and his two brothers were able to use Ymir’s character flaw against him and temporarily defeat the Frost Giant.
However, he cannot be beaten for long, and definitely cannot be killed; even if he’s somehow shattered into a million pieces, he’ll simply reform. Even intense heat proves relatively ineffective. Standing at over 1,000 feet tall, if Ymir wanted to, he could throw the any world into a perpetual Ice Age (which he did to Earth once already) and nothing, aside from blind luck, would be able to stop him.
A powerful antagonist to the Fantastic Four, Mahkizmo, also known as the Nuclear Man, is the ruler of Machus, an alternate reality where men have enslaved women. On his own, he’s fought and defeated the Fantastic Four, able to infuse his fists and punches with a sort of nuclear power that can be released in all directions. However, he was briefly defeated when Thundra and the Thing hit him at the same time, causing reality to fold around him, but he survived as an intangible, invisible cloud of atoms.
When next we saw him, years later in John Byrne’s She-Hulk, Mahkizmo was no longer a serious villain, but written mainly for comedic purposes. He’d eventually fight the Fantastic Four again, but since then, which was over a decade ago, he hasn’t been seen since. Don’t tell us a gender-biased villain with nuclear-exploding hands doesn’t have potential!
4 PROFESSOR POWER
Anthony Power, or Professor Power, is what you get if you turned Iron Man evil and had him especially hate mutants. A former college professor, when his son returned from war and became vegetative as a result of shellshock, Power sought out Professor X to help them. Charles Xavier admitted there wasn’t he could do, which only made Power insane with paranoia, which manifested into him building a power suit and trying to kill the X-Men.
His strength was rather staggering, as he’s proven himself able to take on the combined might of the X-Men and Spider-Man, and even the Defenders, without much trouble. There’s no reason why he couldn’t be updated and made into a genuine threat to put all of mutantkind at risk.
3 IMPOSSIBLE MAN
Arguably one of the weirder beings the Fantastic Four have dealt with, and that’s saying something, the Impossible Man is a shapeshifter who stems from the planet Poppup. Essentially Marvel’s answer to DC Comics’ Mister Mxyzptlk, not only does the Impossible Man have complete control over his atomic structure, but he can has a myriad of reality warping abilities. The Impossible Man is effectively a god with a mischievous streak; able to do whatever he wants.
In fact, the Impossible Man is so powerful that he’s resisted the attacks of the Molecule Man, who’s known for creating entire universes and controlling all molecules…except apparently the molecules of the Impossible Man. More impish than malicious, it would be horrifying to see an enraged Impossible Man taking out any aggression he has on the universe. Who could stop him? Well, probably no one.
One of the more obscure villains dwelling in the Marvel Universe, it’s easy to forget Dracula is running around waiting to cause pandemonium. Ever since the ‘70s, Dracula hasn’t had a regular series and he’s appeared only randomly. For the longest while, Dracula has not been written as a formidable threat. He could, or rather should, be in current Marvel comics. He’d be a great foil to magical heroes like Doctor Strange or Ghost Rider, more so the former since Strange killed a fair number of vampires a while back.
While Dracula might not be the strongest baddie, he’s one of the deadliest. Virtually immortal, his longevity means he literally possesses all the time in the world to sit and plot humanity’s ruin. Dracula is a king who must feed his kingdom, that’s also made up of vampires; the day will come when they need to hunt for blood.
The Fantastic Four have a rather eclectic assortment of villains. One of their more ridiculous, and dangerous, foes is the legendary Super-Skrull. After the Fantastic Four averted a Skrull invasion, the Skrull emperor chose one of his finest warriors and worked a way to give him all the powers of the superhero team. A success, the Super-Skrull now had all the FF’s powers, but to a heightened degree. Additionally, aside from using their powers better than the Fantastic Four themselves, the Super-Skrull also can uniquely control the minds of others or paralyze an opponent.
Alone, he’s bested the Fantastic Four, but during the series Secret Invasion, the Skrulls made an entire army of Super-Skrulls, yet the original hasn’t been seen for while. Considering the Fantastic Four aren’t going to be turning up anytime soon, it’s a good chance their villains won’t be popping up either.
Which of these villains do you hope shows up soon? Let us know in the comments!