Spider-Man has collected a lot of villains over the years. Some intimidating, some not. But Mister Negative was poised to make an impact from the start. First appearing in 2007, Martin Li a.k.a. Mister Negative came into Peter Parker's life at a moment of relative peace. It wasn't long before the monochromatic villain tore that peace apart. He might be a newer addition to Spider-Man's famous rogues gallery, but Mr. Negative has already been shown as a match for the Kingpin, Doc Ock, and Kraven the Hunter. With his inclusion in Marvel's Spider-Man for PlayStation 4, his profile is only going to grow from here.
But who is Mister Negative, and what's his beef with Spider-Man? He began life smuggled to the West by gangsters, he was used as a test subject for a dangerous new research that gave him superpowers. The experiments also split his personality in two, creating a good side and a bad side. The bad side, dubbing himself Mr. Negative, believed the world needed to be balanced between good and bad. He set out to do this by becoming the top crime boss in New York while his good side became a billionaire philanthropist.
Of course, Spider-Man ended up getting in his way. But when they came to blows, what powers did Mr. Negative have in his arsenal to combat the wall-crawler? What powers does he have? To answer that, here are 25 Superpowers Mr. Negative Has That Are Kept Hidden.
25 His Split Personality Happens Instantly
Mr. Negative's defining feature, besides his photo negative appearance, is his split personality. His good half is Martin Li, a philanthropist who owns and operates a series of homeless shelters called the FEAST Project.
Unfortunately, neither can control when the other personality takes over.
The Martin Li side isn't even aware of the Mr. Negative side, except as an unseen opponent in a game of Go he's set up in his office. Despite his villainy, the Mr. Negative side supports his Martin Li side. With Martin Li being so kind-hearted, He believes they balance each other out.
24 Corrupting Touch Is Too Strong...
One of the things that's made Mr. Negative such a successful crime boss is his corrupting touch. We mean that quite literally too. His most common superpower is touching someone with his dark energy. Doing so inverts their morality and brings them under his control. It also turns their clothes into a photonegative like his own look. His mind control isn't 100 percent perfect though. It depends on how moral the person was before he touched them. His hold is much weaker on people who are already villains. But on heroes like Spider-Man, it can be almost absolute.
23 Granting Superpowers To His Henchmen
Mr. Negative's henchmen, the Inner Demons, are a greater challenge than many of their ilk. Part of the reason for that is because their boss grants them additional superpowers. By touching them with his dark energy charged hand, Mr. Negative can pass some of his own abilities onto his goons. These include charging their weapons with dark energy and a form of regeneration. If the person he touches already has superpowers, that person's powers will also get a boost from the dark energy. It's useful tactically for Mr. Negative too. Touching people also brings them under his control.
22 Healing Touch — But It's Not Just For Good Guys
The split between Martin Li and Mr. Negative wasn't just in looks or morality. It manifested in their superpowers as well. Yes, the villain's good civilian identity has powers too. Where Mr. Negative can corrupt people and bring them under his influence with a touch, Martin Li can heal people.
He cured Eddie Brock's cancer with just a hand on his shoulder.
It's unclear how aware Martin Li is of this ability though. He seems to project it out as an aura too. His homeless shelters became very popular because being in his presence healed any wounds or injuries they had.
21 Yes, He Is A Master Swordsman
Though he's a crime boss with an entire gang at his disposal, sometimes a villain's just got to get his own hands dirty. Mr. Negative isn't just packing his formidable dark energy powers when he goes into battle either. He's also a trained swordsman. Despite his Chinese origins, he seems to prefer a Japanese katana as his main weapon. With it, he's battled both heroes and villains to a standstill. His swordsmanship outmatched the skills of the hero Anti-Venom and held off his demonically powered rival the Hood in a fight. Even his Lego minifigure has a sword.
20 His Super Strength Is Serious
The dark energy surging through his body has enhanced Mr. Negative's physique in many ways. One of the more obvious, and useful for a supervillain, was in giving him some super strength. Not exactly to the level of the Hulk, but more than enough to match Spider-Man. In their first encounter, Mr. Negative sent the wall-crawler flying through two buildings with a single blow. Add in his martial arts skills and forget about it. Arguably, this is one of his least impressive abilities though. Plenty of people have super-strength in the Marvel Universe.
19 He Createdd Devil's Breath In His Image
Supervillains always need evil schemes and Mr. Negative is no exception. The first big one we saw in the comics was his plot to wipe out his rival crime factions with a weapon called Devil's Breath. Devil's Breath is a bioweapon that can be keyed to specific DNA. Mr. Negative had obtained the DNA of all his rivals, ready to wipe them out in one fell swoop, but Spider-Man got in the way. The hero got Mr. Negative to agree to spare his rival's families in exchange for his own DNA. The villain took the offer and did try to use Devil's Breath on Spider-Man later.
18 He Created Anti-Venom
Much like Mr. Negative can corrupt heroes into evil, it appears Martin Li can turn villains good. At least, he can accidentally. Hearing of Li's healing ability, Eddie Brock sought him out to cure his cancer. Brock, of course, was the most famous host of the Venom symbiote. Li did heal him of cancer, but neither knew some of the symbiotes' cells were still in Brock's bloodstream. The healing regenerated these into a new symbiote Brock dubbed Anti-Venom and he went on to be a new superhero. Appropriately, Anti-Venom looked a photo negative of Venom.
17 His Light And Negative Sides Each Have Powers
The Yin-Yang is very big motif with Mr. Negative. We can see it in his split personality with Martin Li. We can see it in their divergent powers of corruption and healing. We can see it in his origin too. The experiments that created Mr. Negative tapped into primal forces of the universe.
The Darkforce and the Lightforce.
The two forces found a balance in his body, granting both personalities their respective powers. But that's just the tip of the iceberg. Both forces have greater powers, like teleportation and generating weapons. Could Mr. Negative eventually tap into these?
16 He Has Superhuman Reflexes
Spider-Man is a pretty agile guy. Between his leaping and spider-sense, he's hard for most people to get a read on. Let alone dodge his attacks. But Mr. Negative can keep up with the webhead when it comes to agility and dodging. The man has superhuman reflexes. During his battle against fellow supervillain the Hood, Mr. Negative was able to dodge his opponent's bullets. If that weren't enough, he also cut them in half with his sword. This extends to his offense as well. Mr. Negative can throw knives with pin-point accuracy. Good thing Spidey has spider-sense.
15 Charging Weapons With Dark Energy
There's a lot of things Mr. Negative can do with the dark energy at his command. He can corrupt others with it, shoot it out of his palms, and heal himself. But the thing he really likes to do with his dark energy is charge his sword with it.
When he does, it crackles with a black electricity.
This increases the weapon's lethality greatly, making it stronger and more durable than before. The charged energy can also be released from the sword in a wave if Mr. Negative wants. It's just the same as what happens to him when his evil side takes over.
14 Negative Energy Blasts
His connection to the Darkforce has proven quite beneficial to Mr. Negative. With its dark energy coursing through his body, he's learned to manipulate it many different ways. One of the more common is to shoot out blasts of the stuff from his hands at opponents. He does this at Spider-Man in the PS4 game and they're powerful enough to send the webhead flying back. This actually connects Mr. Negative to the wider Marvel Universe. The heroine Dagger does something very similar, shooting daggers of Lightforce energy. Given the two's connection to that primal universal force, it's not too surprising.
13 He Has A Ridiculously Strong Regeneration Ability
Of the powers of his that he grant his Inner Demon henchmen, Mr. Negative's regeneration is the one they make the most of. Thanks to him, the Inner Demons can heal even wounds that would be lethal in normal circumstances.
They've survived impalements, gunshots, and even decapitation.
Only suffocation has been shown to slow them down. Given that Mr. Negative gave them their powers, we can assume he has the same. It's probably connected to the healing powers he has in his Martin Li personality. Of course, he's good enough in a fight to not need them.
12 Limited Shapeshifting (Yeah, Seriously)
Mr. Negative's signature photonegative look isn't just a costume he wears. No, that's what his actual skin looks like. Whenever Martin Li involuntarily transforms into Mr. Negative, the Darkforce energy inside him shape shifts him into the photonegative look.
This isn't something he can control or is even aware of.
Mr. Negative seems to have some manner of control over the shapeshifting though. He can even extend it to others. Whenever he corrupts a hero like Spider-Man, their costume will turn into a photonegative look like him. Branding is always important to a supervillain.
11 Dark Energy Puppets
If it weren't enough that he had a whole army of henchmen at his disposal, Mr. Negative can bolster his ranks by himself. He can manipulate the dark energy within him to form into puppets to fight for him. Look at the second phase of his boss fight in the PS4 game to see this in action. He can either make a bunch of regular-sized puppets or one really huge one to defend himself. But that's all the puppets are for. Defense. Their attack is really limited and Mr. Negative only makes them if he's caught one on one.
10 Super Speed
While not exactly on the same level as someone like the Flash or Quicksilver, Mr. Negative does have some impressive speed at his disposal. His reflexes are incredible to begin with, able to dodge web blasts from Spider-Man easily. But he can also match the wall-crawler in movement too.
Mr. Negative is one of the few people to get the drop on Spidey.
He moves faster than the hero's spider-sense picks him up. This might be connected to Mr. Negative's Darkforce energy. Other people have used the Darkforce for teleportation, and his speed may be a limited form of that.
9 Negativity Makes Him Stronger
Like Jekyll & Hyde, Mr. Negative is the dark side of the kind Martin Li. And like that famous pair, the two's wildly different moralities isn't a cause of an accident. Mr. Negative is actually all of Martin Li's repressed negative feelings. It's how he can be such a generous and helpful person in his civilian life. All his bad ideas are being acted out by Mr. Negative. It's making Mr. Negative stronger too. The more Martin Li represses, the more good he does, the more Mr. Negative's powers increase when he takes over their body. Always in balance they are.
8 Charismatic Leader
Being a crime boss is all about engendering loyalty. The more people you can get to follow you, the stronger your power base will be. While his power of mind control helps with that, Mr. Negative is charismatic enough without it. He founded the Inner Demons gang on his own and became the major criminal power in New York's Chinatown. When the Kingpin's organization collapsed, Mr. Negative almost took his spot as top crime lord. Even his Martin Li personality has his charisma. Aunt May was so impressed by his philanthropy, she was a frequent volunteer at his homeless shelters.
7 Superhuman Durability
Pitched superhero battles will take a toll on anybody. It's best to be able to take some damage and still keep swinging. Thankfully for Mr. Negative, the dark energy that empowers him also makes him quite durable. The connection to the Darkforce & Lightforce helped him survive the experiment that gave him powers in the first place. His body, like his sword, is surrounded and charged by Darkforce energy, making him stronger and more resistant to damage. Even if he does get hit, the restorative power of the Lightforce will take care of any injuries quickly.
6 Turning People To Stone
A character's superpowers can get interpreted in some odd ways when they're adapted to other media. Sometimes they get wildly different in cartoons or video games. That's what happened to Mr. Negative in the Ultimate Spider-Man animated series. Instead of his corrupting touch, he could turn people to stone instead. This change was probably done to make him a bit more kid-friendly. He was still a mobster though. That's fitting considering this version of Mr. Negative also existed in the Spider-Man Noir universe, which was inspired by 1930s detective stories and horror movies.
5 Expert Manipulator
Mr. Negative and Martin Li couldn't be more different and Mr. Negative wants to keep it that way. While he's a monsterous gangster, he wants everybody to think of Martin Li as the noble humanitarian his other personality thinks he is. It serves both personalities that no connection is made between them. To that end, Mr. Negative has used his cunning to manipulate the public image of Martin Li. His campaign was very successful for a long time too. Yuri Watanabe, a police friend of Spidey's, had to dig very deep to find any evidence of his secret.
4 Keeping People Corrupted
The one major flaw in Mr. Negative's corrupting touch is that it isn't permanent. Yes, it's stronger on more moral people, but a strong enough will can break through his control. Spider-Man himself has broken free from it. He also can't re-corrupt someone once they've escaped his control. To that end, Mr. Negative has been looking for ways to keep people corrupted. He's found one too. The drug Shade can mimic the effects of his dark energy, keeping people Mr. Negative has corrupted under his control. With his partial mind control, he can make people take Shade even easier.
3 Cloak & Dagger
Spider-Man isn't the only Marvel hero Mr. Negative is associated with. His origin story also links him to the teen heroes Cloak and Dagger. When Martin Li was forced into experimental drug tests, two other test subjects with him were the runaways Tandy Bowen and Tyrone Johnson. All three of them were exposed to the energies of the Darkforce and the Lightforce. But where as Tandy and Tyrone were only connected to one force each, the Lightforce and Darkforce respectively, Li was connected to both. The two escaped and became the heroic duo Cloak & Dagger. Li became a supervillain.
2 Will To Survive
Even before he had superpowers, Martin Li had a strong will to survive. The ship that transported him to the West wrecked on the coast. He had to swim through a storm to survive. He was the only one who did. When he was forced to be a guinea pig for experimental drugs, his will kept him going until his personality split. Even after becoming a villain, he's never been beaten down for long. When Martin Li was arrested, Mr. Negative escaped and returned to Shanghai. Building his criminal empire back up from scratch was no challenge for him.
1 Access To Advanced Technologies
Being a wealthy mob boss has its perks. You get all the best toys. Mr. Negative has access to many weird and wonderful gizmos from the Marvel underworld. It's not just bioweapons like Devil's Breath either. He's outfitted his Inner Demons gang with electrified swords, nunchucks, and other melee weapons.
His lairs have advanced medical technologies.
Hammerhead, another Spidey villain, even went to Mr. Negative when he wanted a robotic adamantium skeleton. He's the villain who's got the money, the tech, and knows the best mad scientists to combine them.