20 Of Marvel Comics’ Weirdest Villains
For clarity’s sake: Man-Ape is more man than ape, no matter his appearance or brutish style. As a renegade warrior of the Wakandan civilization, M’Baku campaigned to drag the African country into a primitive state. To accomplish that, he used a sacred ritual to gain the powers of a sacred white gorilla — even if that meant making a meal out of one of them — and as such was reborn into a villain that harassed the similarly-themed superhero Black Panther. Speaking of, M’Baku started off as a mighty soldier, but still lagged behind Black Panther. Essentially, desecrating the corpse of an innocent and noble animal earned him nothing but a silver medal and regular defeats — to say nothing of the time he got drunk at a wedding.
Comic fans may have noted that Iron Man 3 features talks about AIM — Advanced Idea Mechanics — as part of its story. Thankfully, the movie had the foresight to not include one of its most notable villains, for fear of shattering humanity’s suspension of disbelief. The Mental Organism Designed Only for Killing is the result of a project gone wrong, who goes from computing middleman to energy-slinging psychopath and usurper of AIM’s command. His control over technology and psychic powers makes him a dangerous foe, but it takes the wind out of his sail when he looks like a cross between a soda can, a toilet, and an old man yelling at kids to get off his lawn. Whoever has to bring him to the big screen doesn’t have an enviable task.
It’s fairly common knowledge that the Hulk is the result of a gamma radiation experiment gone wrong — but he’s neither the first nor the last big brawler to be born from what might as well be pseudoscience. Enter Zzzax, the end result of a mix between terrorist gunfire and an atomic reactor; apparently those are the two ingredients needed to create a being of electromagnetic energy in human form, which for some reason also managed to develop human intelligence as it absorbed energy from human brains. Even for comics, that’s a bit of a stretch — but since beating him can effectively mean punching a bolt of lightning, it all evens out. Somehow.
Judging people by their appearances is neither fair nor advised, but sometimes it’s unavoidable. Sometimes there are characters like Sugar Man, whose mere presence goes against the very concept of reason. He’s Mole Man, Spiral, and MODOK all rolled into one; he’s a mutant from an alternate timeline; his tongue can stretch out and pierce through anything; his weapons of choice include a big hammer and an axe; on top of all that, he’s an accomplished biologist and geneticist. There’s creativity, and then there’s just pulling words out of a hat. Then again, one of Marvel’s A-list superheroes is an art student from the forties turned into a super soldier and frozen in ice for decades, so clearly the masterminds know what the people want. It’s either that, or pure random chance.