Art by Mike Deodato Jr.
I know, I know, I already discussed Bullseye when I did my Top 10 Vilest Villains list. However, this will be a different and more in-depth discussion of the character, so it’s still worth your time to read. Also, without spoiling too much, expect to see more repeat offenders on this list and the DC list that I will be putting together after this one concludes.
Anyway, on with the show!
Little is known about the man known only as Lester. He has made many claims about his early life. He says that he set his childhood home ablaze to kill his father. He may have been a major league baseball player for a time, a career that ended when he killed a batter with a baseball. He may have even worked for the NSA for a time.
All that is known for sure is that he became an assassin for hire, and that assassin’s name is Bullseye, the man that never misses.
His earliest known employments took him to places such as Africa and Nicaragua, bringing him to meet individuals such as Frank Castle and Deadpool.
He soon made his operations domestic, and he implemented an extortion scheme in New York City. This plan involved a number of murders, something that brings great joy to Bullseye. In his confidence, he even participated in an interview with New York newspaper company the Daily Bugle. This brought Bullseye into conflict with an individual whom would come to define much of his career, Daredevil, the Man Without Fear. Bullseye battled Daredevil, and the mercenary won the duel. However, his extortion scheme had to be jettisoned.
Bullseye was next hired to kill lawyer Matt Murdock. This brought him into conflict with Daredevil once again. The vigilante won this battle, and this drove Bullseye mad. This defeat caused irreparable damage to Bullseye’s reputation in his own perception. He became obsessed with Daredevil, taking any and all jobs that would lead to another battle with the Man Without Fear.
He would later develop a brain tumor that triggered a number of hallucinations. The most common of these was perceiving random individuals as his arch nemesis, Daredevil. After a significant killing spree on Bullseye’s part, the real Daredevil interfered and brought down the criminal once again. He was arrested, and the tumor was removed while he was in custody.
After managing to escape from incarceration, Bullseye received a job to kill Wilson Fisk, the Kingpin. However, Fisk offered Bullseye a better pay, and the assassin became employed by the crime lord. This changed when Bullseye was defeated yet again by Daredevil. Fisk hired another assassin named Elektra to replace the failed Bullseye. As a result, Bullseye killed Elektra, and this enraged the assassin’s lover, Daredevil. After another battle, Daredevil let Bullseye fall from a rooftop. The assassin managed to survive the fall, but his back was broken.
A Japanese mobster named Lord Dark Wind healed Bullseye and laced his bones with Adamantium. He returned to his criminal activities and once more joined up with the Kingpin.
During a period of Daredevil’s absence, Bullseye began impersonating the hero and began a Robin Hood-esque crime spree where he robbed the wealthy and gave the gains to the poor of the city. Bullseye began believing he really was Daredevil until the real Daredevil returned in Bullseye’s own costume and defeated the imposter. For whatever reason, this shattered Bullseye’s illusion and caused him to return to his own costumed identity.
Bullseye continued to be a blight upon the Man Without Fear’s life, killing Karen Page, learning his secret identity, and targeting Matt Murdock specifically. Daredevil would eventually carve the Bullseye insignia into the assassin’s forehead with a rock as retaliation.
When the Super Hero Civil War erupted, Bullseye was recruited by Norman Osborn aka the Green Goblin to join his own cadre of Thunderbolts. Osborn’s team was charged with arresting unregistered super humans on behalf of the government, a job the group performed gleefully and ruthlessly. He ran with this incarnation of the Thunderbolts for the entirety of its existence, never ceasing his bloodthirsty ways which were only encouraged by Osborn. He killed the sister of fellow Thunderbolt, the Swordsman, and he personally executed a number of super human prisoners arrested by the team.
After the Skrulls’ Secret Invasion, Osborn was promoted to be the head of the U.S government’s new security apparatus, H.A.M.M.E.R. He had a number of his former Thunderbolts impersonate Avengers in his own team of Dark Avengers. Bullseye was made to be the team’s Hawkeye. He fought for these Avengers on a number of assignments, including battling Morgana le Fey, a malfunctioning Hulkbuster drone, the Molecule Man, and even Deadpool. He was later tasked with killing Daredevil. The two fought to a standstill, and Bullseye (dressed in his old uniform) detonated a fully inhabited apartment complex in Hell’s Kitchen, killing many innocents. He taunted Daredevil and escaped back to Osborn.
After Osborn’s failed Siege of Asgard, his Avengers team was arrested. Bullseye was being transported to Ryker’s Island when he escaped and ran across Daredevil once again. This time, the hero showed a ruthlessness and brutality that he had never exhibited before. Daredevil ended the conflict by killing Bullseye with a sai, the same weapon with which Bullseye had killed Elektra years before.
The Hand managed to get a hold of Bullseye’s body and performed a dark ritual to bring him back to life. However, the ritual was imperfect, and Bullseye was brought back paralyzed and unable to survive of his own volition.
Lady Bullseye, who had brought Bullseye’s body to the Hand to be resurrected, placed him in a mobile iron lung to keep him alive. Unable to perform the physical feats he was once capable of, Bullseye focused on sharpening his mind and planning abilities. He constructed a scheme to bring down Daredevil, and Lady Bullseye and another Daredevil foe named Ikari put that plan into action.
This plan eventually brought Daredevil to Bullseye himself, and Ikari and Lady Bullseye attempted to kill the vigilante within view of his paralyzed nemesis. The battle caused the floor to collapse beneath Bullseye, and he was dropped upon a number of chemical vats. This broke them open, and they leaked into Bullseye’s makeshift cocoon. Daredevil was able to save his life, but the chemicals still blinded the assassin.
Bullseye has not been seen since this battle. However, Marvel has announced a solo series for him, so we’ll see what that’s about when it’s released.
Bullseye is a bloodthirsty psychopath who enjoys nothing more than killing people. This makes him a lot of fun to read about and a joy whenever he shows up to cause more turmoil in the life of Daredevil. His skill and agility make him a great match for the Man Without Fear, and this often results in awesome skill-based fight sequences in the comic books. His obsession with Daredevil and his paranoia about his own reputation make him a fairly interesting villain as well. However, his sadism is the thing that most makes him deliciously wicked in my eyes.
He’s a heartless monster with an undying vendetta, and this is what places Bullseye at the Number 8 slot of my favorite Marvel Villains.