Marvel comics has created some of the most iconic heroes in comic book history. But these heroes are only as interesting as the villains they must face off with. These bad guys have really enhanced the comic book stories with their complexities, their relationships with the heroes, or just their outright evilness.
Some of these villains made a name for themselves by facing off with individual villains and becoming their archnemesis. Others are so formidable that they faced off with entire superhero teams like the Avengers. No matter the size of their threat, Ranker has highlighted these villains as Marvel’s best.
10 Green Goblin
Spider-Man has one of the best rogue’s galleries of enemies of any superhero, but Green Goblin often stands out the most. Given the torment and danger he has inflicted on the web-slinging hero over the years in the comics, it is not hard to see why he’s been so prominent.
Norman Osborn is a ruthless businessman in his own right, but transforming into the terrifying Green Goblin, armed with his glider and pumpkin bombs, and he is even more intimidating. The villain at the center of the classic Spider-Man comic book storyline “The Night Gwen Stacy Died” deserves his iconic status.
Though he was created by Avengers member Hank Pym aka Ant-Man to be a robotic peacekeeper, Ultron quickly became one of the superhero team’s most formidable foes. He is a machine without sympathy or reasoning which makes him incredibly dangerous.
While Ultron’s robotic body makes him almost impossible to stop and he packs a wide range of deadly weaponry, it is his intelligence that makes him such a hard villain to beat. He always seems to be one step ahead of the heroes and aware of their weaknesses.
The X-Men have plenty of great villains they have faced off with over the years, but Apocalypse is certainly one of the most powerful of them all. he is known as the very first human and has bent civilizations to his will throughout history.
His powers are nearly limitless making him an especially hard villain to defeat. Throughout the comics, the X-Men have often been forced to band together with their other enemies in order to bring Apocalypse down.
The alien symbiote is responsible for some of the most iconic and popular storylines in Marvel comics. And there has perhaps been no more sadistic host for a symbiote than Cletus Cassidy who became the villainous Carnage.
Even before joining with the symbiote, Cletus was a serial killer and fairly evil human being. But as the red symbiote, he was given the power to embrace his most evil tendencies from him. Able to morph his hands into all kinds of weapons, Carnage is a gross killer unlike any other.
While Carnage might be the evilest symbiote, Venom has always been the most popular and is often seen as Spider-Man’s greatest adversary. As a former colleague of Peter Parker, Eddie Brock united with the symbiote in the hopes of getting even for Parker’s perceived crimes against him.
Venom’s powers mirror Spider-Man’s in various ways making him an interesting darker version of the hero. However, part of the reason Venom is so beloved is that he can be the brutal villain at times as well as the anti-hero.
A big part of what makes a good villain is the relationship they share with the hero. In terms of Loki, the fact that he is the half-brother of Thor sets him up nicely to be the God of Thunder’s most important enemy.
The sibling rivalry between Thor and Loki adds a Shakespearean element to the story which has been wonderfully explored in the MCU. It should also not be forgotten that this trickster god is also the first villain to take on the Avengers on his own.
Magneto has been the villain in almost every X Men movie to date and it is not hard to see why. The mutant leader has the ability to control metal objects which ends up being a godlike power that poses an incredible threat.
Magneto is also a very complex villain who is often sympathetic and whose point of view can sometimes be difficult to argue against. Yet as the leader of the Brotherhood of Mutants, he is still a destructive and ruthless villain.
Not every villain needs to be a world-ending threat in order to be memorable. But it is hard to deny how imposing of a figure Galactus is. This cosmic villain is known as the Devourer of Worlds as he literally consumes planets across the galaxy.
Interestingly, Galactus is so powerful, he often sends his heralds to do his bidding yet is still very intimidating. He is the type of villain that requires virtually every Marvel hero to band together in order to defeat him.
two Doctor Doom
Though he has gotten some disappointing big-screen adaptations in the past, Doctor Doom is regarded as one of the most capable villains in comic book history. as the ruler of his home country of Latveria, Doom sets his sights on ruling the entire world.
As with many great villains, Doom is not evil just for the sake of it, but rather he sees himself as the hero. He honestly thinks the world would be a better place with him as the ruler over all and he will not let anyone get in his way of that.
It is true that the so-called Infinity Saga helped establish Thanos as the MCU’s biggest villain, but the Mad Titan had proven himself in the comics long before that. He has been a constant antagonist to the Avengers for years, but it was the storyline that inspired his role in the movies that really made Thanos an icon.
Wielding the all-powerful Infinity Gauntlet, Thanos wiped out half of the universe simply by snapping his fingers. But perhaps even more disturbing than his reasoning of him in the movies, the comic version of Thanos killed all these people simply to impress Death.
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