Posts tagged Villain spotlight
Villain Spotlight: Molecule Man
There is a point at which villainy becomes pointless. I know that this may be hard for some of the aspiring supervillians to believe but as someone who wants to rule the world you have to consider the level of power you already have and simply committing crimes becomes even more absurd. For example, if you will, Owen Reece, Molecule Man. With the ability to control all molecules and energy as well he has virtually unlimited power. He has been known to create solar systems as well as fighting the beyonder and has even died and come back. So, what is in that this man wishes to gain from being a villain? It can't be money, he already has the ability to create anything he wants by a simple thought and it can't even really be power. Short of the infinity gauntlets there is nothing that would really effect his power. Yet that is what he did. Attempting to take over New York he was confronted by The Fantastic Four and though the claim was that he was defeated because he couldn't use his power on organic matter the truth is that he was defeated because he didn't know when to simply accept that he had enough power. And that has led him down a path of pain. Sometimes on the side of right and sometimes on the wrong he has died, come back, created life, and even loved but the simple unwillingness to understand that he has more power than he can use is still his greatest problem.(except possibly the way he looks, I mean seriously there is something disturbing about that costume)
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Villain Spotlight: The Signalman
As a supervillain the first thing you must do is choose a theme. If you have superpowers this is easy enough as you can build your new persona around that, but what happens to the intrepid young villian who has no powers? If you are lucky your parents had the good sense to name you something that can easily be turned into a theme. Perhaps your name means something in latin or is an anagram. Phil Cobb had neither of those(though the Cobb, using corn based weapons may have worked if he tried) and so he had to find inspiration somewhere else and he chose the bat signal becoming Signalman. Expanding on his newly discovered theme Signal man created one of the most memorable costumes in comic book history and then began to commit crimes using this new motif by including symbols such as Morris Code or other symbols in every crime. Eventually he captured Batman in the Bat Signal but that was the high point of his career. A lack of follow through ultimately led Phil Cobb down the wrong path and he gave up on Signalman becoming for a short time the Blue Bowman, but without follow through his following was lost and he became little more than another in the crowd joining the Secrets Society of Super Villains and even attempting once more to become Signaman, but his credibility had been lost. There are those who still defend Signalman saying that he chose the persona of the Blue Bowman because superheros had become symbols themselves but Cobb has made no such argument himself refusing to comment when asked about the change of costue.
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Villain Spotlight: The Big Wheel
Villains come in all shapes and sizes. The ability to fight the bad fight is not one limited to only those born with superpowers or those that are brilliant. This truth is best demonstrated by the villain who's shape is round and size is big. "The Big Wheel." Jackson Weele was a businessman who grew tired of petty embezzlement and decided to take the next step. This was preceded by his attempt to hire Rocket Racer to steal the evidence of his embezzlement. The Rocket Racer made fun of the clearly unstable Weele, calling him The Big Weele. Taking his new nickname as a clue to what his superpower should be he goes to the Tinkerer who creates for him the ultimate weapon. A large wheel with guns and waldo arms. As with all villains upon getting a powerful new weapon he knew that he must attempt to destroy his archnemisis, Rocket Racer. He chased down the young skateboarder but the racer was already fighting Spiderman. This is where things fell apart for "The Big Wheel". A smart villain would have allowed Spiderman and The Rocket Racer to wear each other down. One of them may have even been beaten completely but Rocket Racer instead chose to attack. Sadly, as the wheel was new and he had not well tested it he didn't recognise its single flaw and as he was driving up a building it tipped over on its side and then fell into the river. Spiderman attempted to save the villain but was unable to save the businessman. He survived the fall and was almost immediately captured by the police on charges of embezzlement. He spent the next twenty years in jail before being released. Among the belongings returned to him as he left prison was a giant wheel. From this point on "the Big Wheel" attempted to go straight. He joined Vil-anon, an organization  designed to help villains reform.  As part of this program he teamed up with Spiderman for a day.  So far as it is known he has remained reformed.  Yet, even this reformed villain has lessons that can be useful in your life of crime. Know your equipment, have a plan, and don't name yourself after a child's toy.
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Villian Spotlight: Dazzler(Burtram Worthington)
Burtram Worthington, the first to have the proud name of Dazzler proves that often having a plan, and a really cool base of operations is more important than anything when becoming a villain.

The story of Burtram is a common one in the beginning. Denied his rightful share of his father fortune Burtram went to his brother,  Warren Jr. to borrow money which he used to buy a secret base under the Statue of Liberty that would be the headquarters of his illegal diamond smuggling operation.

Before we can move on we must stop to examine the brilliance of this plan. Because it is a common tourist location no one will notice a few extra people.  As an island it is possible for ships to dock without going through typical channels so the chances of getting caught are far less and most importantly you can turn the statue of liberty into a giant remote control weapon of destruction. (So far as I know Dazzler did not do this but it can only be because of time management issues).

His ultimate plan was to create a giant laser using the diamonds. This laser called the Spatial Destructor(You have to give him style points for the name). Saddly before he could create this ultimate weapon his meddling brother(upon finding secret base under statue of liberty on the expense report) discovered what he was doing.

Dazzler, smart enough to stay out of these things himself, hired goons to kill his brother(Using the money he borrowed from his brother presumably).

Warren Worthington III, AKA. Angel learned of his fathers death and immediately assumed that it was Burtran Worthington and sought vengeance.

Using the teleporter he had in the base(No need to explain that every secret base has a teleporter) Dazzler imprisoned Angel in a room with his girlfriend Candy Southern. He then attempted to brainwash Angel to steal him a diamond big enough for his machine. This failed because Angel is a mutant and no mutant can ever be mentally controlled. (Never, none of them. It's a known fact all other examples are simply misunderstandings or possibly the placebo effect.)

With the help of several other X-men Angel was able to defeat a middle aged man with a half completed laser and Dazzler was put in prison. As this did not appear to be enough punishment for Angel he later suggested the name Dazzler be given to Alison Blaire as a constant reminder to his uncle of his disdain for the man. This is still Alison Blaire's primary reason for remaining with the X-men.

Burtram has not returned to crime mostly due to his inability to come up with a name cooler than Dazzler though he was recently overheard asking a friend what he thought of the name Lazeler so his criminal tenancies may be returning.

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Villain Spotlight: The Spot
There is something noble about someone who gives up what is clearly a billion dollar idea in order to persue a life of petty crime. And that is the story of The Spot. The Spot, Dr. Jonathan Ohnn, while working for The Kingpin created a small black spot that led him to an odd dimension where he was covered with similar spots. These spots, that he can make any size, allow instantaneous travel through this alternate dimension. So why not simply take the million dollar Nobel prize and use the spots to replace the entire airline industry? The Spot has too much integrity for that.  He understood that the true use of any world shattering technological advancement is to rob banks. The Spot defeated both Spiderman and Blackcat during his first attack on the pair, using the ability to travel instantly through dimensions to punch Spiderman in the back of the head while he was laughing at the name The Spot. By the time the two met again Spiderman had gotten past the humor of the name The Spot and though he put up a valiant battle The Spot was defeated by the web crawler. Rather than simply admitting defeat and moving on to plan b(Selling the plans for the spots to the US military for 500 billion dollars) he joined the Spiderman Revenge Squad. This group was nearly able to succeed where the sinister six had failed so many times but nearing their moment of triumph Grizzly and The Gibbon turned on the team. Things began to go badly for The Spot after that. He was forced by The Gidion Trust to open a portal to The Negative Zone so they could exploit its natural resource and even had his neck broken by Tombstone though he seemed to have healed a few months later. No matter the path that The Spot takes in the future you can rest assured that this honorable man will resist any urge to use his abilities to make an honest living. The Spot is one of a rare few who understands villainy is far more important than profit and we could all stand to learn from his example.
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Villain Spotlight: The Red Skull
As a member of several self proclaimed evil societies I like to think of myself as a match for most men's evil, but on occasion you come across a true savant. One who understands evil in a way that most of us can only hope and dream. Perhaps one of the best of this lot is the personal friend of Adolph Hitler the Red Skull. The Red Skull has raised being evil to an art form. From world war II genocide to the murder of Peter Parker's parents this is a man who would boil puppies alive just because he was bored. You don't just fall into evil of this caliber though, it is something that must be earned. And The Red Skull has paid his dues. Johann Schmidt began his acts of evil early killing his mother in childbirth an act that also convinced his father to commit suicide. Johann Schmidt was forced onto the streets as an orphan thanks to the evil, yet not fully thought out plan. Yet he did not allow a lack of power or money to limit his evil ambition and he soon murdered the first girl he ever loved. His relationships with women have been rocky ever since. He eventually worked his way up to being a bellhop where we can only assume he soiled people's luggage in unimaginal ways. While there he met Hitler who, in order to prove a point, trained him personally to become his right hand man. As the young Nazi completed his training Adolph gave him the Red Skull mask and put in charge of Nazi terrorism. His acts across Europe at this time were so effective that America was forced to counter by creating Captain America. At the end of World War II the Red Skull was buried and left in suspended animation for decades. Yet his evil could not be contained by simple suspended animation and he terrorized the world with sleeper robots that woke to seek revenge for the Nazi's loss. One might think then that the Red Skull would remain loyal to the Nazi ideals after he woke, but loyalty is not evil enough for this protogy and he betrayed even his own ideals first becomming a communist and eventually an evil capitalist. Eventually he was killed, but even hell itself could not contain the evil of the Red Skull and he escaped. This escape from hell gave him limited reality altering powers which he used to become the USA secretary of defense and used a new experimental biological weapon on Mount Rushmore. He has also been implicated in the assassination of Captain America. A true genius of evil and a role model we can only hope to live up to. A few other Notable moments in the Red Skull's exploits This is how he treats people he likes
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Villain Spotlight: Dr. Spectro

If you didn't know Dr. Manhattan from The Watchmen is based off of the character Captain Atom. A being able to manipulate a quantum field with a theoretically infinite amount of energy. He can fly, is nearly invulnerable, has super strength, he can live in the vacuum of space, and even create matter. So who would dare challenge this almost god like being. He would have to be someone with great courage, great intellect and great power. This is where one of his most important villains appears. Dr. Spectro. A member of the legion of Doom Dr. Spectro is able to use light to effect emotions as well as hallucinations. Not bad powers but they seem unlikely to have much effect on Captain Atom. His career as a villain, started out typically enough. His own technology was turned against him driving him into the life of crime, but from there it became less average, but later he was approached by the government. Wanting to create a superhero who was answerable directly to the government they paid Dr. Spectro and a few others to lose to Captain Atom so he could become a major hero. I am not certain what the long term game plan of Dr. Spectro was but eventually captain Atom turned against the government. The most important aspect of Dr. Spectro is of course his courage. From the courage to face the face of criminals who eventually turned his invention against him to the courage to fight captain Atom with no fighting ability and no plan. Even the costume he wears shows courage in abundance and though courage itself has not proven to be enough defeat Captain Atom it is worthy of our respect.

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Villian Spotlight: The City Stealers
It is surprising how many people don't have tho follow through to go through with a plan. I can't tell you the number of times that I have suggested doing something that everyone thought was a good idea but there was just no follow through. That above all else is what impresses me about "The City Stealers". We don't know a lot about the history of the city stealers and there were some flaws in their plan, but they made their attempt. Their plan, as you might have gathered from their ingenious name, was to steal a city. Manhattan to be exact. To do this they made a deal with "They who wield power"(Clearly at this point marval had given up on naming characters) and were given power armor and destructo-rays. Using the destructo-rays to break away the stone that held the island of manhattan up began to cause earthquakes. This drew the attention of the only two superheroes who lived in New York at the time, Spiderman and Hercules. The two attacked the city stealers and were quickly defeated and chained up. This moment of morality seems almost endearing to these villians until you recognise the fact that if they were to succeed in their plot to destroy the foundations of the city of Manhattan it would have sank and killed millions. In this light the idea to not simply shoot Spiderman and Herculies in the head while they were chained up seems a little odd. They continued their attempt to create a new Atlantis but Herculie broke free but the city stealers prove to not be totally incompetent and shoot him with a blast from their gun. This again knocks him unconscious and again they choose to not kill him. Instead one of the city stealers decided that the best plan of action would be to hold spiderman over his head, assumingly because a 12 foot drop would be more effective at killing the webcrawler than the blaster rays. At this point Hercules and Spiderman once again break the metal chains and this time defeat the city stealers. Herculies claimed that they had succeded in their plot at this time and he dragged the city back to its position. This was later found to be untrue and the general assumption is that he absorbed the energy from the destructo-ray. What isn't understood is how the blaster rays from the city stealers blasters knocked him unconscious but he was strong enough to survive a destructo-ray blast. Still with the failures of their plots hte city stealers made their attempt and nearly succeeded, twice knocking unconcious herculies in the process, an impressive feat, and their allies got away in the nuclear submarine though they were not heard from again.
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Villain Spotlight: The Chameleon
The Chameleon was Spiderman's very first super villain this Russian born villain has the ability to appear as anyone, quite a useful power, especially when used for theft theft of important missile defense plans. This theft in two parts was when The Chameleon first ran afoul of the webcrawler. He successfully stole the first half of the plans by appearing as one of the scientists who were working on them, but for the second half of his plan he attempted something more ambitious. His plan was to appear as Spiderman, who at the time was a wanted criminal at the time, framing him for the crime. Not only this but in one of the most confident moves of all time he ensured that both the police and Spiderman would be at the scene while he committed his crime. In retrospect this may have been a small miscalculation and his plan was foiled but this was not the end of this super villains career. Over the years he continued his attempts to ruin Spiderman's life, sacrificing his own livelihood to help the greater community of super villains by limiting his criminal activity and instead focusing on the destruction of Spiderman, but showing great restraint in doing so by not appearing as someone Spiderman would trust and simply shooting him but though much more complicated plots. One of his most important attempts to stop Spiderman came in the form of an alliance with Harry Osborn, who before his death told the Chameleon that Spiderman's identity could be found through Peter Parker. He then created two androids who looked like Peter Parker's parents. The explanation of why he needed androids when he could have looked like either of Parker's parents is not explained, except through the Psychotic breakdown he suffered during this time and the epic battle against Mary Jane when she beat him down with a baseball bat. This led to the ultimate downfall of the villain who was also overpowered by his nephew and eventually by Aunt May who defeated him with oatmeal raisin cookies, but he can not be blamed for that as oatmeal raisin has been the downfall of many villains. His final downfall can be seen below.
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Villain Spotlight #8: The Flag Smasher
Born in Bern Switzerland, The Flag Smasher is the son of a Swiss Banker who's father was trampled to death by Latverians which led him to the understanding that the concept of countries and nationalism is evil. In order achieve his goal of eliminating governments he formed an organization called the Underground Liberated Totally Integrated Mobile Army To Unite Mankind which was not chosen for the acronym ULTIMATUM because who in their right mind would choose a name just so it had a cool acronym. Carrying a mace the Flag Smasher soon discovered that attempting to smash large pieces of cloth with a club wasn't as satisfying as he had envisioned and began to plan more effective plots.  The next of these plots was to capture an American airliner(presumably the most patriotic one) and hold the people hostage demanding the Captain America be handed over for execution in return for the release of the hostages. Perhaps he decided that smashing a flag with someone inside would be more effective. Some time later The Flag Smasher discovered that his organization was being funded by the Red Skull and he turned against his former comrades and he was forced to work with Captain America to stop ULTIMATUM from setting off a pulse which would render all electrically operated machines useless. Among his more notable feats was the defeat of U.S. Agent. He beat the man nearly to death then left him in a half frozen pond to freeze to death.  One might suspect a better plan would have been to shoot him but... well.... it just wouldn't be sporting. Another important point in his career came when he took a everyone in a Captain America press conference hostage. One of his minions began to fire into the crowd. This is typically where you would flog the minion, but instead Captain America got a gun from someplace and shot the minion, the first man who Captain America had killed since World War II. Flag Smasher has yet to attack the leader of Latveria, though they are the ones responsible for the death of his father. Perhaps he understands that unlike Captain America, Dr. Doom would simply kill him or perhaps it is just a case of honor among villains.
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Villain Spotlight #7: Steel Slammer
With so many villains focusing on long careers it's good to see someone who knows what he wants, goes for it and then gets out, and that plan would have worked perfectly for the Steel Slammer who was smart enough to avoid any of the typical superheroes. Even Iron Man, who would clearly have no chance against Steel which is clearly far superior to Iron, didn't find him. What the Steel Slammer didn't count on was the rivarly of villains. His attempt to steal a single piece of priceless artwork was seen by The Green Goblin. The Green Goblin, showing his true civic mindedness chased down this villian who turned out to be a industrial spy. He was presumibly going to explain how stealing a priceless work of art was spying rather than simple theft but the Green Goblin has se
Not the same
en the dangers of monologging used this moment which is the downfall of so many villains to push the man in front of a train. The first time villain was bounced between the train and several building but thanks to the absorbitive properties of Steel survived the battle and has remained out of the spotlight ever since.
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Villain Spotlight: Right-Winger
Do not confuse Right-Winger with Left-Winger. Right-Winger is evil in every conceivable way. He hates  children and puppies but loves war because it kills children and puppies, while left-winger, his partner, loves peace, puppies and children. Right-winger started out as a member of the military industrial complex serving four years but finding peace boring, Jerry Johnson, the Right-winger, join the Power Brokers Strength Augmentation Program. Upon completing this hugely dangerous, expensive and criminal process Right-Winger immediately joined the Unlimited Class Wrestling Federation, presumably to help himself train his new found abilities and not because he just liked to wrestle. After gaining some notoriety as a superhuman wrestler he was recruited to join the Bold Urban Commandos, also called the Buckies. This three man teem all wore variations of the Captain America costume and fought in urban areas boldly. But before they could boldly fight urban crime they must get rid of the ultimate enemy. Captain America. They did this not by overwhelming him with the spectacular moves that Right-Winger learned during his wrestling career but by pretending to attack John Walker during talk he was giving against Captain America. This worked and John Walker was named the new Captain America, but John Walker didn't chose the right-winger, or even the loving, kind and nearly perfect Left-winger to become his partner but instead chose Lemar Hoskins because he was the only one of the group willing to be called Bucky. (Later he became unable to withstand the humiliation and changed the name to Battlestar) Feeling betrayed by John Walker the two partners revealed his identity to the public. This dastardly dead committed by Right-winger, and patriotic stance against masked vigilantes committed by Left-winger led to the death of John Walker's Parents and drove John Walker into a near mental breakdown. The two then fought John Walker in an epic battle on an oil tanker which eventually exploded with Right-winger and Left-winger inside.
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Villains Spotlight #4: The Boss Man

One of Spider Man's most dangerous foes the Boss Man is a tactical genius with loyal minions and only a bit of bad luck that allowed Spiderman to once again narrowly escape death.
This highly ranked criminal overload of New York was able to capture Spiderman using nothing but his wit and a Super-steel Spider net.
After capturing Spiderman he locked him in a room with now windows. This room would almost certainly have held the wall crawler forever but for the Boss Man's single miscalculation. Leaving only a single guard to watch the door he did not count on Spider Man having a Hostess Fruit Pie which he was able to bribe the guard with.
This ingenious method of escape proved the single weakness in The Boss Man's organization. While his minions were highly paid and skilled enough to capture the super strongSpiderman they were not giving long enough lunch breaks. This along with the nearly irresistible lure of Hostess Fruit Pies created an inevitable crisis for The Boss Man.
Ironically a short time later A known associate of The Boss Man, Larcenous Lil captured Spiderman with a similar net. Sadly the Boss Man had not been able to come out of hiding long enough to warn the woman that though the net worked perfectly Spiderman was known to carry Hostess Fruit Pies. He once again offered the gun wielding thug a Hostess Fruit Pie and the man freed him from the net.

Check out the previous Villain Spotlights
Villain Spotlight #3 The Lepus
Villain Spotlight #2 Cycle Nurses
Villain Spotlight #1 Rainbow Raider

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Villains Spotlight #3: The Lepus
One of the most terrifying villains of all time. You see them all the time but you never think much about these deadly killers sitting quietly twitching their noses and waiting for the chance to strike, but Night of the Lepus brings that terror to the foreground.
Just as Jaws made people afraid to go into the water for years night of the Lepus made us fear carrot patches for fear that these giant mutant bunnies would capture us.
Just thinking about it brings back that horrible, horrible hopping and the folly of those scientists who used those rabbits for their testing and created giant, mutant, flesh eating rabbits.

In the end the only thing that stopped these ravaging creatures was the brilliant plan of Deforest Kelley's character who electrified the railroad then chased them into it. The movie doesn't explain why the rabbits didn't simply hop over the railroad tracks but I suspect that Deforest Kelly had made some brilliant mathematical deductions taking into account the size, weight and strength of those rabbits and knew that they would be unable to cover the distance between the two tracks.

Be advised that this clip is not for the faint of heart.

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Villains Spotlight #2: Cycle Nurses

As everyone knows nurses are the most dangerous members of the medical establishment, a fact that Johnny Blaze discovered in Ghost Rider #20.
After kidnapping Lucas Collier from the hospital the Brimstone Biker attempted to escape, but he hadn't counted on the Cycle Nurses fought him with guns, blades and anything else they could get, nearly defeating the spirit of vengeance as they chased him through the back roads of Montana.
Eventually the cowardly kidnapper led the nurses onto highway 18. The nurses, likely knowing the danger but willing to risk everything for the child, fought both the Ghostrider and the cannibalistic specters getting killed.
The young kidnapped boy even got into the fight showing clear signs of Stockholm syndrome helped to kill the angel which came to liberate him from Johnny Blaze.
The so called hero of this story then went on to find the innocent descendant of one of the killers of the cannibalistic specters and fed him to the ghosts, but that's another story.
The lesson of the Cycle Nurses is clear. You must never underestimate the dedication and strength of a hospital nursing staff, especially one which has allied itself with a rebel angel of vengeance who wants to overthrow God.
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Villains Spotlight #1
Villain Spotlight : Rainbow Raider

Rainbow Raider appeared originally in Flash Volume 1 Episode 286. His powers include making a hard light rainbow he can ride on and coating people with color that effects their emotions.
His tragic story began as a colorblind child who wanted nothing more than to become an artist and when that dream collapsed he found a new dream fighting against those who cruelly taunted the colorblind with works of art they could not appreciate.

His life was cut short when he was killed by Blacksmith, but do not fear his legacy lives on in a team of color-themed super villains calling themselves the Rainbow Raiders.

I salute this brave warrior for the rights of the colorblind, a misunderstood hero who used his powers in an attempt to create a world where even the colorblind could be equal and my heart goes out for this truly heroic man who was unable to see the beauty even in the rainbows which he created.

Let us take a moment of silence to mourn a life lost to soon.
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