Ever since the inception of the Marvel Cinematic Universe back in 2008 with Jon Favreau’s Iron Man, the famous heroes and villains of the world of Marvel Comics can seemingly do no wrong. The characters that we see on the big screen are often some of the most prestigious and time-honored characters that the colorful panels have ever unveiled. The films have even managed to take some characters with pretty un-inspired powers and turn them into box office hits and household names among fans. However, not every hero in the pages is really cut out for the big screen treatment.
The reason so many of these characters are set to never appear in the mainstream is because they have absolutely terrible powers. Whether they be weak, useless, or just stupid, they all find themselves being nothing more than laughing stocks of the Marvel Universe.
Chances are if you aren’t a huge follower of Marvel Comics then you may not even be aware of who most of these characters are but they are somehow unforgettable in terms of pure crappiness. Something about a guy who shoots lasers out of his eyes and a guy who is just kind of strong but is also very short certainly stand out but, for all the wrong reasons.
Alright, it’s been enough foreshadowing for one list. It’s time to jump in and check out the darkest corners of Marvel Comics lore and see those who Marvel would probably prefer us to forget.
20 His Pain Is Also His Power
Robert “Robbie” Baldwin made his first appearance in 1988 as his previous guise Speedball and suited up as Penance in 2007. Robbie’s powers are pretty cool if you just look at what they are. He is able to project very powerful blasts of kinetic energy and they can be pretty destructive.
The big issue with Penance’s powers is how they are activated and how they are strengthened. You see, Penance’s powers are activated by his own personal pain. This means that his powers have a very obvious ceiling once he has taken too much pain to continue on. It’s different but also incredibly inefficient, so much so that he wears spikes all over the inside of his costume to keep him in constant pain. It’s a pretty aggressive power and one that leaves him very vulnerable.
19 This Hero's Useless, Mate
A supervillain with the full power of the outback. Not really. He’s just a dude in a big robotic Kangaroo suit. This suit allows him enhanced strength, and super jumping abilities. As well as a giant kangaroo pouch cannon. Yes, this man has a cannon inside of his pouch.
Brian Hibbs made his first appearance in 1997 facing off against Spider-Man. He is very irrelevant in the Marvel universe with a small number of appearances. His weapons are boring, his skills are pretty much pointless and his gimmick is dumb. Here's hoping that he doesn’t make any more appearances anytime soon, since he’s so stupid.
18 At Least He's Got A Good Throwing Arm
Sharing pretty much the exact same skillset as equally trashy DC character Captain Boomerang, Frederick “Fred” Meyers aka Boomerang gets his bland and boring abilities from his skill with weaponized boomerangs. He made his first appearance in Tales to Astonish #81 in 1966.
As I stated, he has no special powers that make him super but his villainous career is backed by impeccable ability to throw gimmick boomerangs. Yes, this is very stupid, and how many can he really carry with him at once? He would be out of the fight quicker than Hawkeye. You think they would have given this guy a little more to contribute.
17 Like Daredevil, But Less Cool
Short, blind, weak, hilarious appearance, and some ugly subterranean mole people to control. That’s what you get when you take an in-depth look at the ruler of Subterranea, Mole Man.
He first appeared in Fantastic Four #1 back in 1961 and is somehow still relevant in the Marvel comics universe. This disgraced former scientist fell into a cavern leading to a hollow earth kingdom and without his Moloid army he is literally just a short blind guy with a staff. It’s almost pitiful how depressing his character and powers are.
16 The Suit Is Nice, At Least
Adrian Toomes is one of the more popular foes of the friendly neighborhood Spider-Man, first appearing for the first time in Amazing Spider-Man #2. He is a very intelligent electrical engineer and is in possession of a suit that has a very specific and very limited purpose.
The vulture suit that Toomes wears allows him the ability of flight, which he uses to rob buildings and such. While I can admit that he is rather skilled and agile at flying, he is just an old guy in a wing suit. Take that away and what do you got? Most certainly not a genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist. But Michael Keaton definitely killed it in Spider-Man: Homecoming though... he may be the best Spider-Man villain portrayal yet!
15 Stilts Aren't Intimidating
First appearing in Daredevil #8, he is a long-standing villain of Daredevil, Thor, and Iron Man. He is a dude in another suit that gives him abilities... boring.
Wilbur Day’s suit gives him telescopic legs that can lengthen and give him incredible height. That’s pretty much his biggest thing. How do you make a character that thrives on being tall? All you would have to do is sweep his legs and he down for a nap. I don’t understand how he is ever a threat to any of the prominent Marvel heroes. It’s pretty disappointing to see that a character like this even exists.
14 She'd Be Fun At Parties
While she is a particularly popular member of the X-Men, Jubilee still sits on the sidelines in most non-comic appearances of her famous superhero team. She made her first debut appearance in 1989’s Uncanny X-Men #244.
Prior to her becoming depowered during “M-Day” and before she became infected with a strain of vampirism during the Curse of the Mutants storyline, she had a pretty cool, yet obviously ineffective power. Jubilee had the ability to project small firework-like pyrotechnics from her fingertips. Pretty cool at parties, but not very helpful in most situations in the field. Despite that, she still remains one of the most popular supporting characters in the X-Men universe.
13 He's Nothing Without His Suit
Career criminal MacDonald “Mac” Gargan recently took a turn as the violent symbiote Venom, but he's known for his villainous guise as the Scorpion. He first appeared back in Amazing Spider-Man #20, and his powers are granted to him by his high-tech suit that obviously resembles a scorpion.
The suit comes with a tail that is capable of emitting energy blasts and is also capable of being a violent melee weapon that he can swing around. If you ask me, that’s a very basic and boring skillset for someone who is wearing a high-tech suit. Also, if you are able to subdue the tail then you have taken away all of his combat capabilities, making it a glaring weakness.
12 Why Pop Stars Shouldn't Be Heroes
If you grew up playing the incredibly popular X-Men arcade game, then you are no doubt familiar with Dazzler. She is the character that you definitely didn’t want to get stuck with. Her powers may seem cool, but they are pretty much for show and not very effective in other matters.
Dazzler is a pop star with the ability to store energy from sound waves and project them later in bright explosives. The only problem is that she can store energy from her own voice, making the most easily accessible fuel pointless and making her far less effective.
11 Shockingly Bad
Here we have another one of Spidey’s famous foes and a usual member of the Sinister Six. Now, at first glance Herman Schultz, aka Shocker, is a pretty nonthreatening villain, with his soft cushiony exterior costume. But when you look deeper, it is safe to say that he IS pretty unthreatening.
First of all, his name isn’t exactly true and his abilities don’t really involve shocking people as much as they involve projecting violent vibration waves. Now, while this could potentially be very threatening, Schultz is kind of an idiot and often is defeated by Spidey. And to top it all off, his powers are not natural; they are derived from his vibro-gauntlets which when removed leave him with no actual powers.
10 He Should Stick To The Olympics
This French villain, Batroc the Leaper, made his first appearance in Tales of Suspense #75 back in 1966 and while the name is laughable, the character is just equally as laughable. He is a thief, an Olympic level athlete, and weightlifter. And yes, he does leap.
Batroc is essentially a joke, and pretty much everything he appears in he is just a joke that is meant to be laughed at, aside from his live-action debut in Captain America: Winter Soldier in which he was actually pretty intense as an international terrorist. But that is only a small part of the character history, and the rest is filled with a borderline comedic character.
9 Maggots Are Gross
Now onto one of the most disgusting X-Men to ever be conceived and written in ink. Maggot is a supporting X-Men character who has never really been able to step into the spotlight, but once I tell you what his powers are you’ll probably be happy he hasn’t.
His digestive tract is actually a pair of living giant maggots that he can release to go and eat and gain nourishment. They eventually will return to him and provide him with that nourishment. It’s disturbing and hardly helpful in any kind of mission that the X-Men could find them in. This really makes him a pretty dedicated bench warmer.
8 The Cow Is A Vamp(ire)
Now, I can’t make this stuff up. Hellcow is very much a real Marvel character, and is the result of a cow named Bessie from the 17th century being bitten by Dracula himself. I need to stress that this a 300-year-old cow with the abilities of vampire.
That’s all there is to this character, it’s a basic vampire with dairy producing properties. She first appeared back in Giant Sized Man-Thing #5 and fought Howard the Duck by somehow mistaking him for Dracula. Howard ended up staking Hellcow through the heart killing her. Which is just tragic, what are we going to do without a Vampire cow?
7 A Tiny Bit Useless
The heart and soul of the Canada-based super team known as Alpha Flight, tiny, bouncy man Puck finds himself among some very powerful heroes. Unfortunately, he is not one of them.
Puck’s super powers are as follows: short, strong, fast, resistant. He’s all the basic superhero tropes wrapped up in a tinier package than most. His small physical appearance is really the only thing that gives him identity. If he was just a regular sized guy he would be boring and bland and I doubt he would have survived past a couple of issues. Yet somehow Puck is pretty popular among readers.
With his team as stacked as it is with heroes like Sasquatch and Northstar, I don’t understand why they need someone like Puck and yet here we are.
6 A Stupid And Unsafe Power
Super villain Victoria Murdock, aka Asbestos Lady, made her first appearance in the panels of Marvel comics back in 1947’s Captain America Comics #63, and the stupidity was seen pretty much immediately.
This short run villain has no powers... only a fire-proof suit she built from asbestos to keep her safe from her own flamethrowers, as well as her primary counterpart, the Human Torch (Jim Hammond) whose abilities were obviously fire-based. As fate would have it, she would later die not from fire but from cancer which she contracted from prolonged exposure to her own asbestos. She was just a pathetic character in about every way possible.
5 No Control
The leader of the X-Men likely has a place in a large portion of reader’s hearts, however I think we can agree that the charismatic leader of the Mutant team is anything but useful. Scott Summers first appeared back in 1963 as one of the first members of the X-Men.
Cyclops may seem to have to cool powers at first with his shiny eye beams. However, he has no ability to turn it on or off. It is just perpetually blasting out of his eyes and making his existence difficult, and his visor doesn’t even allow him remote access to his beams. Instead, he must press the button on his visor, which isn’t very helpful in many situations that require the use of his hands, such as physical combat. Plus, his brother Havok can fire energy blasts out of any part of his body, making him way more combat viable.
4 I Guess That's Convenient?
Making his first appearance in Avengers West Coast #46 in 1985, DeMarr Davis aka Doorman is a member of the West Coast Avengers and features a very simple power but little else in his wheelhouse. He is a mutant born with the ability to tap into the “Darkforce Dimension” and create portals through objects by standing up against them.
To put it plainly, he is the poor man’s version of the much more popular and useful Kitty Pryde. He never actually joins the X-Men and is forever a part of the very awkward West Coast Avengers, later called the West Coast X-Men. He does little else for his team other than as a glorified door, which makes for a stupid hero and a stupid name.
3 No Other Powers Squirrelled Away
I’m very much aware that this one may upset some people, as it is hard to deny that she is pretty awesome and a very different take on what a hero can be. That being said, it does little to change the fact that Squirrel Girl has one of the most stupid powers in all of Marvel. As her name would suggest, she has Squirrel abilities and is able to control squirrels.
Doreen Green first appeared back in 1992 and proved pretty quickly how powerful she was by defeating Doctor Doom. As surprising as it is, she accomplished this by overwhelming him with a horde of controlled squirrels. It really is amazing that she is becoming so incredibly popular today.
2 He's A Quack
When you look at this list, there is definitely one stand out character whose inclusion on this list should be far from a surprise. Howard the Duck was popular in the 80s due to his less-than-desirable live action film adaptation. However, he is quickly gaining popularity again with today’s readers.
Unfortunately, those readers will be treated to a character whose has very little power aside from his walking, talking duck gimmick. He is a master of Quack-Fu, a made-up fighting style and that’s it. Other than that, he is just a smoking, alcoholic humanoid duck. Seriously, what was going on with Marvel when they came up with the idea for his character? It’s almost frightening.
1 He Could Have Just Taken Driving Lessons
Finally, the most worthless hero there is, Buford Hollis aka Razorback. I know what you’re thinking, big muscular man in a giant razorback warthog costume, surely, he must have some form of superhuman strength or something that can be useful in most situations; but you’d be wrong.
Razorback’s super power is actually the ability to drive any vehicle. Yeah. That’s it, that’s all he can do. He first appeared back in 1977 and has made minimal appearances since. This everyman superhero is incredibly underwhelming and pretty pathetic if you ask me. Especially since his powers are genetic; yep that’s right he’s actually a mutant. Clearly not all mutants are born with dope powers like teleportation, regeneration or telepathy.