Top 10 Green Lantern Villains

Top 10 Green Lantern Villains

I’m quite a fan of the Green Lantern gallery of villains. There are many cool designs, and I dig the characters and motivations of many of them. There are plenty of great rogues to choose from, and I’m going to count down the ten best right now. Let’s begin!

  1. The Shark

A telepathic shark-man, Karshon the Shark is a threat both physically and mentally. Ever since he mutated from being a simple tiger shark, the Shark has been a dangerous foe of Hal Jordan.

He’s not made in an appearance in quite a while, being supplanted by King Shark as DC’s nominal shark-man villain. He was changed back into a tiger shark sometime back by the Green Lantern. I for one hope that the Shark makes a return sometime in the near future.

  1. Nekron

While I’ve gone on record in saying that I’m not a big fan of “archetypally evil” villains, I would be remiss to not mention the mastermind behind one of Green Lantern and DC’s coolest crossover stories, Blackest Night.

Nekron is the embodiment of death itself and the manufacturer of the Black Lantern Ring, a weapon which can raise the dead to attack the living. In the later stages, he was even able to use them to possess heroes who had encountered death before.

Nekron very nearly conquered Earth and the entire universe before Earth’s heroes and all seven Lantern Corps were able to send him out of this dimension. He is the Blackest Night itself, and this makes him a worthy foe of the Green Lanterns.

  1. Larfleeze, the Orange Lantern

The being known as Larfleeze is the bearer of the Orange Light of Avarice. This ring is unique in how it changes the personality of its bearer and allows him or her to summon those who have been slain by an Orange Lantern.

Larfleeze is a pitiable creature, as he was forced into taking on this burden and cannot escape it. He wants all things in the universe to be his.

He has been made into something of a comedic character at times, but I prefer the more serious and sad interpretation of the villain. He has helped the other Lantern Corps in their time of need which shows a spark of goodness in the greedy heart of the Orange Lantern. All of these qualities combined earn Larfleeze a noble place on this list.

  1. The Phantom Lantern

          A new addition to the Green Lantern rogues gallery, Frank Laminski is a really interesting foe brought to life in Sam Humphries’ Green Lanterns title. His ring can summon the seven colors of the spectrum, and he gets to choose the Ring as opposed to the Ring choosing him.

Laminski is a unique foe in that he desperately wanted to be a super hero and even had some failed ventures before being presented with the Ring by Volthoom, the First Lantern. He was yet another well-intended human being who stepped into a realm he did not fully understand.

Another pitiable character with potential for greatness, Frank Laminski has easily earned a place on this list despite his short existence in comic books.

  1. The Manhunters

          “No man escapes the Manhunters,” the motto of a violent and near-totalitarian brigade of law enforcement androids. This was the First Army of the Guardians of the Universe, but they proved to be flawed and led the beings of Oa to create the Green Lantern Corps.

These are dangerous machines who have gone rogue on many occasions, prompting the Guardians to send the Green Lantern Corps to round them up.

The Manhunters are a really cool concept because they helped add depth to the ancient order and conflicts into which the Green Lanterns of Earth have been recruited. Their visual design is simple and sleek, their motto is ominous and memorable, and they are more than worthy of being on this list.

  1. Star Sapphire

Love is a complex thing, and no relationship shows this better than that of Hal Jordan and Carol Ferris. Though they have fallen in and out of love on many occasions, they have clashed with Rings of Light just as often.

The gem which was previously used by Carol Ferris initially controlled her, and she was later given a Ring which she could better control. She has since been more of a heroic figure with her in control of the ring, helping Hal Jordan and the other Lanterns in the War of Light and the Blackest Night.

However, she was a great foe of the Green Lantern first, and that earns the Star Sapphire a place on this list.

  1. Black Hand

William Hand has the touch of death, literally. Whatever he touches with his right hand begins to wither and die. Thanks to Nekron and his Black Lantern Ring, he can now also raise the dead to serve him.

He has trouble getting along with the living, and so he finds solace with the dead. The Black Hand is an oddly sympathetic villain in his struggles to empathize with the living, but that doesn’t negate the fact that he is a great threat to all that is living.

These elements earn the Black Hand a spot in the 10 Greatest Green Lantern Villains list.

  1. Mongul

A conqueror from beyond the stars, Mongul has taken over many worlds and is responsible for countless deaths. From his throne on Warworld, Mongul extends his dominion over species after species.

He has strength to match even the lives of Superman, and he was even a member of the Sinestro Corps for a time before Thal Sinestro himself cast him out for mutiny.

Mongul is a being with an endless thirst for power, and he is the kind of classical evil rogue that I love. He is a worthy foe of the Green Lantern and a threat to anyone who stands in his path.

  1. Atrocitus, the Red Lantern

The being once known as Atros is one of the best characters to come out of mainstream super hero comics in the last decade. He is a being who will never let go of his grief. The Manhunters slew his family, and those who oppress others will ever pay the price for this crime.

Atrocitus is not an evil man; he only wants to punish those worth punishing and take in those whose grief matches his. He takes in the lost and destroys the oppressors.

However, his vengeance is thorough and brutal, and this is why the Green Lantern Corps has had to stand in his path on many occasions. He is among the most powerful beings in the universe, with a Power Ring of his own, the ability to spit napalm, and immense strength he can augment with his Red Ring.

He is among the deadliest beings the Green Lanterns have ever faced, and he is quite worthy of being on this list.

  1. Sinestro

Of course, no foe of the Green Lantern Corps has challenged them as often and as greatly as Thal Sinestro, wielder of the Yellow Light of Fear. The trainer and friend of Hal Jordan, Sinestro found the methods used by the Guardians and the Green Lantern Corps lacking.

Believing in a more totalitarian method of law enforcement, Sinestro has put together an army of Yellow Lanterns to enforce his brand of justice throughout the universe.

Like Atrocitus, Sinestro is not inherently malicious. He does want peace in the universe. However, this peace comes at the price of freedom. He believes that people can only be safe if they are too afraid to step out of line. This is where Sinestro runs afoul of Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps, who believe that liberty is just as important as safety.

He has killed many Green Lanterns, and he has clashed with Hal Jordan and the other Green Lanterns of Earth more times than anyone can count. He will never stop until his vision of the universe is brought to life. He is the greatest Green Lantern villain of all time.

Top 10 Fantastic Four Villains

Top 10 Fantastic Four Villains

Did you know that, once upon a time, the Fantastic Four was actually a team with its own book? More than that, it was even the first super hero comic book title of the Marvel Age of Comics, only being preceded by Captain America, Bucky, Namor, the Torch, and a couple of other heroes in Marvel’s super hero catalogue? It even had its own rogue’s gallery of really awesome villains?

Now I’m being facetious of course. The fame of the Fantastic Four is not so easily forgettable, even if Marvel seems afraid of it for some reason. Nixing the book to avoid aiding the cinematic competition in Josh Trank’s disastrous Fantastic Four, Marvel still has yet to bring back the world’s First Family of Heroes, opting instead to make eight Deadpool titles I guess.

Now, as a Luke Cage fan, I am willing to admit five years is a relatively small amount of time to be without a comic book title, but, in regards to the Fantastic Four, I’m not sure that the world has been without a book dedicated to them since their inception back in 1961.

But we’re here to celebrate their villains instead of lamenting their absence. So without further ado, let’s count down the Top 10 Fantastic Four Villains!

  1. The Mad Thinker

Mad scientists are something of a bottomless well in comic books. They’re something of a cliché even, but they are still quite often engaging characters. Julius, the Mad Thinker, is no different. He has ambition, a vision, and the courage to follow through with that vision.

Now, it’s a shame that his vision is flawed and even cruel, but those are fungible details. One of the best parts of the Mad Thinker trademark is his loyal android companion, the Awesome Android (or Andy for short). This is a robot which can mimic powers and has immense strength. He also a head shaped like a brick; simple but elegant I’d say.

The Thinker has challenged the FF, the Avengers, and the Hulk on many occasions over the years with nothing but his intellect and ingenuity. If that is not a good mad scientist, I don’t know what is.

  1. Blastaar

A being of immense power from the Negative Zone, Blastaar has given the FF a run for its money on more than one occasion. Known as the Living Bomb-Burst, he is a large humanoid creature with the ability to put out unfathomable amounts of energy. He has been both a rival and a follower of the Negative Zone conqueror known as Annihilus.

Blastaar is one of the most powerful villains to ever threaten Earth’s heroes. He has the ability to conquer worlds, so he has made this his goal. He is a ferocious and ruthless foe who has challenged the Fantastic Four, the Avengers, the Nova Corps, the Guardians of the Galaxy, and many other defenders of the universe.

In a recent Fantastic Four tale written by Matt Fraction and drawn by Mark Bagley, it was revealed that his energy will only build up over time and will eventually cause him to explode in a blast of energy so large that it would end the universe. To solve this threat, the Fantastic Four took him back to the beginning of time, where his energies could disperse amongst the explosion of the Big Bang.

  1. Kl’rt, the Super-Skrull

A member of the shape-shifting Skrull race and imbued with the powers of the Fantastic Four, the Super-Skrull can literally match the FF beat for beat. He also proves the power of teamwork and the individual skills of the Fantastic Four, as he has yet to outright best them.

Kl’rt also played a pivotal role in the Kree-Skrull War. An exile at the time, the Super-Skrull brought Captain Mar-Vell, a hated enemy of the Skrull Empire and member of the Kree race, to the Skrull Emperor in hopes that he would accept him back into the fold.

The Super-Skrull also aided in the efforts against the Annihilation Wave, brought about by Annihilus to end all life in the positive universe. He almost lost his life in service to the cause, and the majority of Skrull worlds were destroyed in the war, leaving the entire race a species of exiles.

With cool powers and a great story, Kl’rt the Super-Skrull is definitely a worthy member of the Fantastic Four rogues gallery.

  1. The Wizard

Another mad scientist type, Bentley Wittman, the Wingless Wizard challenged the Fantastic Four of nothing but honest hubris and envy. The repeated defeats only made him more avid in his attempts to destroy them.

I don’t really know why he’s called “the Wingless Wizard,” and I can’t really find any reference material to explain that. Maybe it’s because he can fly without wings thanks to his jet boots? I don’t know.

He’s taken more of a comedic role in comics in recent years, and I’m actually okay with that. There’s something kind of charming about the hapless Wizard. He tries hard still, and his giving of his clone to the Future Foundation actually shows a degree of self-awareness that he’s not the best role model in the world. I feel for the Wizard and hope he keeps trying to achieve his villainous goals for years to come.

  1. Thundra

A super-strong woman from a world where women are in charge, Thundra has challenged the Fantastic Four and the Incredible Hulk on many occasions. She’s even been a member of the Wizard’s Frightful Four on more than one occasion.

Like many characters on this list so far, she is less nefarious these days than she once was. She’s become more of a heroic character and fostered a daughter named Lyra who is a mixture of her genes as well as the those of the Hulk himself.

She is strong-willed and has muscles that allow her to challenge the Strongest There Is, so what’s not to like about Thundra? She’s really cool and deserves to be on this list.

  1. Annihilus

The Living Death that Walks, Annihilus is a being who fears death and dispenses it in spades. He originally feared that the Fantastic Four may be a potential death to him, thus beginning a longstanding feud between he and the FF as well as the Earth itself. He has since fought the Avengers, Captain Mar-Vell, the Guardians of the Galaxy, and the positive universe in its entirety.

The last of these is the most notable act of Annihilus. In a mad attempt to end all life, he used his insectoid Annihilation Wave to scour the positive universe of everything except himself. He was slain in this crusade by the Nova Prime known as Richard Rider.

He has since been reborn more than once, at one time supposedly killing the Human Torch, though Johnny Storm would later be found to have survived.

Annihilus is a threat to the universe itself on par with the likes of Thanos himself, and this makes him a very worthy opponent of the First Family of Heroes.

  1. Maximus the Mad

Like I said, I respect the mad scientist types, and they don’t get much madder than Maximus. And, yes, he’s more of a Inhumans villain. However, he and the rest of the Royal Family of the Inhumans first appeared in the Fantastic Four, and I’m not going to do an Inhumans Rogues list because, frankly, there’s just not enough interesting material there.

Anyway, Maximus is a delightfully mad schemer in the vain of Loki. Like Loki, he really hates his brother, the air to a dynasty of a powerful royal family. Okay, he’s a lot like Loki. However, there is a vicious sadism that separates him from the erstwhile brother of Thor. There’s also a coldness and cruelty to Black Bolt that helps make the relationship more interesting.

He’s evil, vicious, and conniving. This is what makes him yet another worthy villain of the Fantastic Four (and the Inhumans).

  1. Ronan the Accuser

A powerful member of the proud Kree race, Ronan is the high Accuser of the Kree Empire, making him the highest law in their society. He also has immense strength and a hammer that can bend reality to a small degree.

He almost brought the Kree-Skrull conflict to Earth, but he later joined in the coalition that challenged Annihilus during the Annihilation War. He later joined with Nova, Quasar, the Silver Surfer, and other cosmic heroes in the group known as the Annihilators, a group intended to be the strongest muscle available to defend the universe from the worst threats imaginable.

His powers have recently been augmented further by the Black Vortex, but this could not save Hala from the mad crusade of J’Son of Spartax. The Kree homeworld was destroyed, and he is a man without a home.

Like many others, he has made a turn to a more heroic side, and his intriguing character and massive strength land him a worthy place on this list.

  1. Galactus, Devourer of Worlds

          A remnant of a universe that died before ours was born, the celestial Galactus has a hunger that is insatiable and can only be stayed by the consumption of the life force of planets.

He first faced the Fantastic Four with his herald, the Silver Surfer. This battle cost the Devourer his servant and drove him back. He has made attempts on the Earth since then, but he has become warier of challenging its heroes.

Notably the group known as the Ultimates managed to send Galactus back to the pod which brought him to this realm of existence and were able to change him into the Lifebringer. He is now known as Galactus, the Seeder of Worlds.

In either iteration, he is a powerful force of nature and yet more sign of the boundless creativity of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in those early days of Marvel Comics.

  1. Doctor Doom

Again, could it have been anyone else? Victor Von Doom is a fantastic rogue and the intellectual rival of Reed Richards himself.

He believes himself to be the only one worthy of ruling this world, but he is also deftly loyal to his homeland of Latveria. He is a master of science, but he has also dabbled in sorcery. He is a force to be reckoned with and has challenged, heroes, warriors, and the gods themselves.

He is not incapable of sympathy and is not needlessly cruel. He is very deliberate in his schemes. He is also madly in love with Susan Storm Richards.

He has recently taken up the mantle of Iron Man in the absence of Tony Stark, and he has even aligned himself with the Avengers. His endgame is yet to be known; perhaps Victor von Doom has truly turned over a new leaf.



Also, let’s show Paste Pot Pete aka the Trapster a little love. He has a weaponized glue gun. He’s just great.

Top 10 X-Men Villains

Top 10 X-Men Villains

Marvel’s premier team of mutants has a rather impressive rogue’s gallery all their own. From celestial conquerors to violent freedom fighters, they have dealt with a number of rather impressive enemies. As such, today we will count down their ten best villains. Villains that have challenged individual X-Men, such as Wolverine of course, more often than the full team are not excluded from this list. Let’s begin!

  1. Avalanche

A good first step for this list, and sort of a foreshadowing of what’s to come with this list. Much of what is included on this list is here more for character and aesthetic design as opposed to deeper reasons such as personality and character arc, at least until we get closer to the top.

Avalanche is a good example of this, as, beyond being a freedom fighter of sorts and his friendship with Pyro, there’s not much to Avalanche for me beyond a sweet costume and awesome powers. His ability to create seismic waves makes him a powerful foe. His end at the hands of the Red Skull is quite a shame, and I hate that he went down that way. A new Avalanche has appeared in the new X-Men: Gold, though not much is known about this one yet.

Also, did you know he was originally Greek? Like the Rhino, I always just pictured Avalanche with something of a Bronx accent. Just like Rhino, he’s actually from Europe. Go figure.

  1. Sauron

A hypnotic, energy absorbing, pteranodon energy vampire; that is just another really cool concept from the get-go. Doctor Karl Lykos is a guy who can turn into a freaking pteranodon with a tail (not a pterodactyl or a dinosaur, those are different things), and that’s just really cool.

Beyond that, he’s always proven a deadly foe of the X-Men, and he he’s a force to be reckoned with. He’s a classic X-Men foe and quite worthy of inclusion on this list.

  1. Lady Deathstrike

The daughter of a Japanese kamikaze pilot-turned-crime lord, Yuriko was raised to hate and to fight. She has clashed with Daredevil, Captain America, and, most notably, Wolverine.

Her design is quite awesome as well, with her cybernetic augmentations, her bushido-esque armor, and her massive finger-claws. I wasn’t a big fan of her presentation as a lover-scorned of Wolverine, but she has become more than that over the years. She is a dangerous foe and a worthy rogue of the X-Men.

  1. Silver Samurai

Another Japanese Wolverine-centric foe who started off in Daredevil comics, I’ve grown to love Keniuchio in recent years. He, like many villains I love, has a weird code of honor which drives him to make his decisions. He’s a powerful mutant with the ability to channel energy into his weapons to make them even deadlier.

I don’t know what that Transformers-esque abomination in The Wolverine was, but it didn’t diminish my love of the comic book incarnation of the Silver Samurai. His costume is quite cool too, with its gleaming armor and immaculate helmet. Silver Samurai is a powerful enemy and another X-Men classic.

  1. Mister Sinister

          One of the X-Men’s most intelligent and powerful foes, Nathaniel Essex has a warped and malignant fascination with the human genome. As a result, he would naturally become obsessed with the mutant phenomenon, particularly in regards to Scott Summers and Jean Grey.

In my teenage years, I had a fascination with Apocalypse that naturally extended to his frequent ally, Mister Sinister. Though that interest has diminished over the years, it’s never disappeared completely. Sinister is a really cool foe, from his genius to his immense power that makes him a challenge even for the most potent X-Men lineup.

In my adult years I find that Sinister is probably more fleshed out than En Sabah Nur, but, well…

  1. Apocalypse

I won’t lie, this is mostly for the costume and never-ending cache of super powers. Apocalypse has been designed as this cosmic force of nature, eternally attempting to forward the wheel of evolution as mandated by the celestials what augmented his mutant superhuman abilities.

Like with Darkseid, I struggle to find foes who are destined to be evil that intriguing, but they can still be cool foes when used properly. Again like Darkseid, I still think Apocalypse is a threatening and fairly well-designed enemy that I can’t help but get excited over whenever he rears his ugly head.

  1. William Stryker and the Purifiers

Not too long ago, I read the Chris Claremont classic X-Men: God Loves, Man Kills, and I was fascinated by the first appearance of the charismatic yet vicious man known as Reverend William Stryker. I was in awe of his hatred of abnormality, going so far as to kill his wife and malformed son to scourge such things from the Earth.

I love the evil bastard that is William Stryker because he and his followers are terrifyingly real. Religious zealoutry has been responsible for so many atrocities throughout history, and it shows no sign of stopping in the present day.

Stryker and the Purifiers are great foes of the X-Men because they are pure fear and hatred, but that mixture of fear and hatred is both believable and depressingly common. Recent activities by such organizations as the Westborough Baptist Church show that these organizations can still exist, and organizations like the X-Men must fight against them.

  1. Sabretooth

An unsurprising entry for anyone who saw my Top 10 Marvel Villains list, Victor Creed is a vicious monster whose bestial instincts have led to the deaths of many. He’s strong, has a healing factor as well as razor-sharp claws; Sabretooth is one of the deadliest enemies ever faced by any member of the X-Men.

He is notoriously locked in a eternal struggle with his opposite, Wolverine, and he represents an excellent foil for the restrained rage of James “Logan” Howlett.

Sabretooth is a terrifying foe who often gives in to his baser instincts which exist in us all. Though he was more recently an Avenger and an X-Man, I will always remember Sabretooth more for his exploits as a Brotherhood member and a vicious killer.

  1. The Juggernaut

I’ve always preferred the idea of Cain Marko as a hero. That’s the reason he didn’t show up on my Top 10 Marvel Villains List. He, like the Hulk and Wolverine, is a man with good intentions struggling with a monster within, in Marko’s case the demon Cyttorak who gave him his powers. He’s attempted to strike out on his own to be a hero, he has joined up with the X-Men, and he’s even been a Thunderbolt. He’s tried to make amends, but he keeps sliding back.

All this being said, the Juggernaut is a classic X-Men villain. His immense strength and unstoppability make him one of the most powerful X-Men rogues to ever challenge the team. He’s tussled with the Hulk and the Thing on many occasions, almost matching them strength for strength.

Though I still hope he is able to redeem himself, I am happy anytime the Marko shows up. Whether he be a hero or a villain, the Unstoppable Juggernaut is one of the coolest X-Men characters around.

  1. Magneto

Really, could it have been anyone else?

My love for the Master of Magnetism is well-advertised on this site. I absolutely love Eric Lensherr. He is one of the best Marvel characters ever created, and his zealousness as a freedom fighter is to be admired, even if his methods are at times ill-advised.

He will stop at nothing to defend his people. He will not stop fighting so long as there is a single mutant left on Earth to fight for, even if that mutant is simply him. He is not a villain in the generic sense; he is a man with a dream and a mission that has simply taken him down dark paths. God help any human or mutant that tries to separate him from his goal.


Also, he didn’t make the list, but could we all agree that the Living Monolith is really cool? I mean, look at him, plus that name…

Anyway, until next time, keep reading comics!

Top 10 Flash Villains

Top 10 Flash Villains

We’re going to get back into the lists by returning to the ever-flowing well of counting down the best members of the rogues galleries of the great heroes of Marvel and DC Comics. We’ve done Spider-Man and Batman; now it’s time to move onto the Fastest Man Alive. You probably already know the top three if you’ve been following my site for a while, and I do apologize for that. The other seven will still hopefully be a surprise for you.

We won’t be counting Justice Society villains or rogues of Jay Garrick. For this, we’ll be looking strictly at the foes of Barry Allen and Wally West. We’ll probably spotlight Justice Society rogues at a later date.

Without further ado, let’s get started!

  1. The Weather Wizard

Marco Mardon received a pretty cool visual redesign in the New 52, and I dig his role as the less talkative powerhouse of the Central City Rogues. The ability to create and alter weather patterns is pretty freaking cool all around. I also like the backstory he was given by Buccellato and Manapul in his reappearance in the New 52 DC Universe. There’s honestly not much more to say about Weather Wizard. He’s just plain cool, and he is a loyal member of the Rogues.

  1. Captain Boomerang

Digger Harkness hasn’t really tangled with the Flash in a while, now being a regular member of the Suicide Squad with Deadshot and that one lady with the red and black clothes. That’s kind of why he’s so low on this list. That being said, he is a really fun and nutty villain. He throws trick boomerangs to fight. A lot of them explode. He also wears a trench coat and a toboggan. What’s not to love?

Geoff Johns also gave him a pretty heavy backstory not too long before the New 52 that was pretty cool too. He had an abusive father whom he ends up decapitating with a boomerang. I like the weird balance of goofiness and heavy themes that make up Boomer’s tale. I also have an affection for down-on-their luck losers like him, and all of these elements combined land Harkness a place on this list.

  1. Golden Glider

Yeah, she used to be a pretty lame villain, but Buccellato and Manapul conspired to make her a really compelling character during the New 52 relaunch. I like that she is an ethereal being trapped in a comatose body, and that she had to wrest control of the Rogues away from her brother, Captain Cold, when he started screwing things up. I also like the relationship she has with Mirror Master. It’s genuinely pretty cute. She’s pretty strong too, with the ability to attack from that intangible form. She’s dangerous and motivated, and that’s what earns her a place on this list.

  1. Heatwave

          Buccellato and Manapul really did a good job redesigning the Flash Rogues, and Heatwave was no exception. Becoming something of a living human furnace, Mick Rory became a malformed and dangerous being that challenged Captain Cold for his leadership on a regular basis. True to his powers, he’s quite a rage-filled hothead who hates the Flash as much as any other member of the Central City Rogues. His powers are also just plain awesome too. He even became a sacrifice for the other Rogues when they were being chased down by the Royal Flush Gang during the events of Forever Evil. He survived and was later found by the Riddler, which makes me glad. Central City is just that much better with a regular Heatwave.

  1. Trickster

It’s easy to write off Axel Walker as something of a discount Joker, but he is so much more than that. Where the Clown Prince of Crime has become notorious for his macabre and horrific tortures sessions and murders, the Trickster is a far more whimsical and fun iteration of the goofy jokester villain template. Of course, there’s room for both, and the Joker is closer to my heart, that frightening, grinning bastard.

Axel is a really fun rogue to watch. He’s fairly inept and would not be as successful without the support of his fellow rogues. However, there’s something so endearing about the innocence of the Trickster, which makes it a little more saddening when the Rogues have to deal with heavier problems.

  1. Gorilla Grodd

He’s a talking, telepathic, genius gorilla. Do I really need to say anymore? He was also voiced by the late, great Powers Boothe (who just passed) in Bruce Timm’s Justice League cartoon, which is just awesome too.

I’m not really a fan of the New 52 iteration of Grodd. He’s not as intelligence or conniving, and the eating brains detail was actually kind of a bit much.

I prefer sadistic, evil genius Grodd over animalistic, beastly Grodd. His scheming mind balances out his strength to make him a full-package supervillain. I love that, and I hope we get to see a return-to-form Grodd very soon.

  1. Mirror Master

One of the real strokes of genius of the legendary John Broome and Carmine Infantino, I think Sam Scudder is one of the most creative villains to have ever been designed. The fact that he can hop dimensions to baffle and challenge the Flash is really cool and shows true creative talent on behalf of his creators. He’s not an elemental villain like Weather Wizard and Heatwave. He’s not an ironic foe like Captain Cold. He’s not an “in a mirror, darkly” villain like Zoom and Reverse-Flash. He’s just someone who has a gun that allows him to jump worlds. That’s just awesome. His costume really good too, making him just an all-around great baddie.

I like that he’s become one of the more level-headed Rogues, balancing Snart’s ambition and Rory’s fury. As previously stated, I like that he has a relationship going with Golden Glider.

He’s been made to have confidence issues, which I think adds an interesting level of depth to the character. He’s a villain that represents the unabashed creativity at work in the superhero comics scene, and I love everything about him.

  1. Professor Zoom (Eobard Thawne)

Though I did discount Thawne in Mirror Master’s entry, there is something to be said about the pure, unbound sadism that exists in the twisted mind of Professor Zoom. He is pure evil, and all of his hate is directed towards Barry Allen.

Like Grodd, I greatly prefer the pre-New 52 iteration of this villain. As opposed to being a deposed warlord, he’s a dejected scientist who became obsessed with his city’s greatest hero and idol, the Flash. He has dedicated his life to making the Flash miserable, but, of cruel ironies, Barry Allen is his ancestor, so he cannot kill him in our timeline yet. He can only torment him in actions such as the murder of Nora Allen, Barry’s mother, during the childhood of the hero.

He’s a cruel monster, and I love him.

  1. Captain Cold

You have to love Captain Cold. He’s an evil guy who has ice powers and dresses like an Inuit. He’s a petty thief with a moral code. He, unlike Grodd and Thawne, is not cruel. He’s just greedy. He wants money, and the Flash gets in his way. He’s pretty simple, but there has been a lot written to explain that simplicity that I actually think makes the character engaging.

None of this is to say that Leonard Snart is without ambition, and this ambition led to a fracturing in the Rogues not too long ago when he found a device that could fuse the powers of the Rogues’ weapons to their bodies, giving them genuine super powers. This resulted in Mirror Master being trapped temporarily in the Mirror Dimension and Heatwave being burned and malformed.

He has since lost his own powers and must rely on his ice gun once again. You just have to love Captain Cold though. I almost want to see him get a win over on the Flash sometimes. Almost.

  1. Reverse-Flash (Daniel West)

A rather new addition to the Flash mythos, Daniel West was a short-lived villain that left an impact on me nonetheless. He is one of the most sympathetic rogues ever designed. The brother of Iris West, the two had to deal with a hateful and abusive father which led Daniel down a bad path in his adult years. Learning of the Flash’s time-traveling powers, he attempted to attain and use those powers to go kill his father and fix he and his sister’s lives. The Flash stopped this from happening of course.

His costume is also quite incredible. I love the red and black, and I like the addition of metal shards he can fire with the static electricity produced by his speed. He looks just plain awesome.

He had a short stint on the Suicide Squad which ended with him possibly being killed while disposing of a bomb at sea. I hope he makes a return soon, because I think he was an excellent recreation of the Reverse-Flash by the aforementioned Buccellato and Manapul. Who doesn’t wish they could go back and fix that moment where their life took a turn for the worse?

Top 10 Spider-Man Villains

Top 10 Spider-Man Villains

Well, we did the Batman Rogues, so why not do the Spider-Man Rogues. They are undeniably the other best batch of bad guys. Animal themed burglars, mob bosses, and aliens attached to serial killers, what’s not to like?

Like many comic book fans, Spider-Man was my first love. He was funny, had cool powers, and has, arguably, the most creative costume ever conceived. As a result, I will always love his villains quite a bit, and I do know quite a bit of them and quite a bit about them.

Anyway, let’s not waste time. Let’s get started!

  1. Speed Demon

It’s hard to read Nick Spencer’s Superior Foes of Spider-Man as well as Fabian Nicieza’s New Thunderbolts without gaining a healthy respect for this former Squadron Sinister member. Yeah, he’s essentially an inferior version of the Flash/Reverse Flash, but he’s just so smug and so…not good at being a bad guy, that it’s hard not to gain an interest in Jimmy Sanders. He’s just a dick, but he’s so charming at the same time. What can I say? I love him.

  1. Doctor Octopus

When I was a kid Spider-Man 2 was my absolute favorite movie. Alfred Molina brought Otto Octavius to life in an impressive and endearing way. As a result, Doc-Ock will always have a place in my heart. He’s a genius with forceful and, at times, violent ways to bring his vision to life in the world. He has generally wanted to make the world a better place, but his personal hang-ups have held him back. I kind of adored the idea of him being in love with Aunt May honestly. Also, the Superior Spider-Man story was actually a pretty interesting idea, even if I didn’t read much of the story.

  1. Kraven the Hunter

Between Deathstroke, Deadshot, and, now Kraven, I guess you could say I have an affection for men with aspirations of leaving a legacy. Sergei Kravinoff wants to be remembered as the world’s greatest hunter, and Spider-Man became the White Whale to his Captain Ahab. He wants to be the man who killed the Spider-Man. He has enhanced strength, speed, reflexes, and this all compounds his already impressive physiology. He has a myriad of weapons, and he will do anything to get his pray. He’s just freaking cool.

  1. The Rhino

He’s a big, kinda dumb, and angry guy dressed like a rhinoceros. What’s not to like? I won’t lie, my admiration for Aleksei Sytsevich (did anyone know that he was Russian? I always just assumed he was a Bronx leg-breaker) doesn’t really go much deeper than him looking cool. I always liked the really strong rogues too, and Rhino was one of my first experiences with such characters. Rhinoceroses are one of the coolest animals on the Earth. Aleksei chose one of the best creatures off of which to base an identity.

Plus, he killed that axe-wielding sucker who tried to replace him. Good on him.

  1. Carnage

Cletus Kasady was a serial killer even before he had a blood-thirsty alien parasite attach itself to him. He worships Chthon, the Marvel god of chaos. He’s just a scary bastard. He will do anything to taste blood. Killing is his sole hobby. The more bodies he can drop, the better. To give Todd MacFarlane his credit, the symbiotes have a really great visual design. So, on top of everything else, Carnage just looks really cool. He’s an immensely powerful and dangerous villain for the Web-Head to throw down with. Even being torn in half by the Sentry didn’t stop him. He keeps coming back.

  1. Sandman

I have a soft spot for rogues who try to go straight (hence, the Thunderbolts), and that is one of the main reasons for my admiration for Flint Marko/William Baker. He only stole to get the funds for his sick daughter. If that’s not a good motivation for crime, I don’t know what is. Apparently, there have been retellings of his origin story, but that’s the one I prefer. After a number of defeats, he did begin feeding a grudge against the Wall-Crawler. He tried to go straight a few times, teaming up with Hawkeye and the Avengers on a number of occasions. He even went straight again during Axis. He keeps going back to his criminal ways, but there may still be some hope for Sandman. We will see.

  1. The Green Goblin

Norman Osborn is a brilliant, scheming, dangerous douchebag. I love him. I list him as the Green Goblin because that is the identity that he is most famous for, and it is the moniker he often uses while fighting Your Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man. However, the era in which he led the Thunderbolts then H.A.M.M.E.R and the Dark Avengers is what truly gave me a love for Gobby. I dug him as the Iron Patriot. It showed an understanding of the kind of world he lived in as well as ambition that took him to the top of the food chain. He could have stayed there if he wasn’t absolutely freaking insane. Ever since, I held a love for Green Goblin, and he will always be one of my favorite Marvel rogues.

  1. The Shocker

That’s right. I love the Shocker. Fight me. He’s cooler than Green Goblin, Carnage, Electro, Doc-Ock, Sandman, the Rhino, Hobgoblin, the Lizard, Scorpion, the Vulture, Mysterio, Chameleon, that jackass Morlun, and all of your favorite Spider-Man villains. I love his costume that makes him look like a tire mascot. I love that his primary weapons are a pair of gauntlets that cause vibrations in the air. I love that the general disrespect he gets has translated to a likable character who has extremely low self-esteem thus making him relatable…oh.

Yeah, I don’t like that the Shocker gets dumped on a lot, but it’s what has made him into the lovable character he is today. It’s a bit of a conundrum I kind of want him to succeed more because of that. I love that he finally gets his day at the end of The Superior Foes of Spider-Man. Hell, he gets to lay out the Punisher. He has a Shocker-mobile that looks like his costume. It’s just plain great. Plus, he was a Thunderbolt too, and that’s just cool.

  1. The Kingpin

I consider him primarily a Daredevil villain now, but I can’t ignore the fact that he first appeared in Spider-Man comics. He’s a man of great vision and ambition. He will do anything to rule the criminal underworld. He does tend to have a loose code of honor, and he’s not willing to do anything especially depraved. However, killing those who would stand in his way is never off the table. He is the epitome of terrifying, silent fury, and he will always be close to my heart as a result.

  1. Venom

Flash Thompson will always be my favorite iteration of Venom. I will always prefer Venom as a hero. However, I do still love Eddie Brock, the original Venom. He’s a great bad guy, and he is a good opposition of Spider-Man. Spider-Man has never really had a problem with coming close to killing his enemies, but Venom is a portrait of what that would be like.

Venom wants to use his power for good. He wants to have control of the beast. However, its will is often stronger than his. It gives him the power to bring down the truly reprehensible people, but the price of its power is him not always being in control. To add to it, the beast really hates Spider-Man, so it often brings him back into the Web-Head’s path. That’s interesting, and it makes Brock a really compelling character.

Anti-Venom and the subsequent attachment to Toxin were cool turns for Eddie Brock. In all honesty, I would have preferred if Brock stayed as Anti-Venom. I thought that was an interesting turn for the character, and I loved the inverted colors of that symbiote. It allowed him to be the brutal hero he always wanted to be.

Mac Gargan was a pretty cool Venom too, and I actually liked the visual design of his version of Venom a little more than MacFarlane’s original and still fantastic depiction. Lee Price was an interesting if apparently short-lived bearer for the symbiote. At the end of the day though, Eddie Brock is my favorite version of the villainous Venom (second-favorite overall after Flash Thompson), and Venom is my absolute favorite Spider-Man rogue.

That’s all for now folks! Keep reading comics!

Top 10 Batman Villains

Top 10 Batman Villains

I’m often and excitedly critical of the Dark Knight Detective. As I’ve said on many occasions, I have more than my fair share of issues with the character and his presentation in modern DC Comics. That being said, I can’t argue that he easily has one of the best rogues galleries in comics, only challenged by the X-Men, Spider-Man, and the Flash. From psychos to geniuses to well-meaning but misguided environmentalists, Batman has to deal with an eclectic guide on his nightly searches for people to viciously beat. Plus, the Top 10 lists I did for Marvel and DC didn’t really allow me to cover as many villains as I’d like. I will likely do lists like this for other heroes and teams in the near future as well. With that being said, let’s count down my Top 10 Batman villains.

  1. Killer Croc

Waylon Jones is a pretty sympathetic character when you get down to it. He was born with a skin disorder, put in a freak show, and his problems were compounded by unnatural mutations that turned him into an anthropomorphic crocodile monster. His mental health has gradually deteriorated by the constant torment he has received during constantly during his life as well as his mutations which he has undergone throughout his life. Essentially, he was told all of his life he’s a monster, and he became a monster. I feel that it’s no irony that Waylon is an African American, and, if you spent your whole life being told you are a criminal, it makes it easier to become a criminal. Oooof, I’m on a roll this week.

Point being, Killer Croc is an animalistic villain with a great visual design and a sympathetic backstory, and I like him a lot.


  1. Black Mask

I have a soft spot in my heart for the classical mob boss archetype, and, consequently, I love Roman Sionis. Yeah, he is sort of the second iteration of the Penguin with a visual design that rips off the Red Skull, but, hey, he looks really nice in his white suit. That’s something, right? Yeah, I can’t defend this one too much. I just like the Black Mask a lot. He screams a lot, he’s incredibly violent, and he seems like he could be good friends with Tony Montana. He’s a Dick Tracey villain for a hero who was based heavily off of Dick Tracey.

  1. R’as al Ghul

Immortal leader of the League of Assassins, the Head of the Demon is a great antagonist to go toe-to-toe with the Caped Crusader. He has fighting prowess on par with the Bat, and he can get back up every time he’s killed. The fact that he and his order of ninjas trade in killing bad people while Batman just puts them in a place that is ill-equipped to hold them R’as them a pretty good yin to Bruce’s yang. It’s hard to argue with R’as’ logic every time Joker or Zsasz butcher an entire family.

  1. The Riddler

The poster boy for trying to overcompensate for an inferiority complex, The Riddler is really smart, but his inferiority complex prevents him from making an unbeatable challenge. This sort of predestines him to fail if you forget the fact that he is just about as smart as Batman. All it takes is one failed riddle, and the Riddler will win. That’s kind of scary if you think about it, and it means that, if anyone is going to kill the Batman, it will probably be the Riddler.

  1. Hush

Or it could be Hush. He’s really smart too, and he has insight into Bruce Wayne’s formative years. A childhood friend of Bruce Wayne, Doctor Thomas Elliot is a sociopathic surgeon with a grudge and a lot of resources at his disposal. Jeph Loeb’s original Hush storyline is a masterclass in comic book storytelling. Hush is a dangerously intelligent schemer who can play the long game and sees all pieces on the playing field. His costume design is really cool too, and I’m disappointed that he hasn’t shown up much since the start of the New 52. I’d like to see more of him in the future.

  1. The Joker

Yeah, I couldn’t make this list without name-checking the Clown Prince of Crime. He’s morbid, incredibly dangerous, and damn funny; what’s not to like? He is crazy beyond comprehension, but he’s also a schemer with plans that a normal human mind would struggle to decipher. His pseudo-romantic obsession with the Batman makes him quite fascinating, and his purple suit is timelessly stylish. He’s a villain that has stood the test of time, and he is a terrifying character study into the depths of the human psyche.

  1. Mr. Freeze

Victor Fries is a man driven by love and compassion. When his beloved Nora was almost taken away from him by a terminal disease, he froze her until the day he could save her life. His experiments made it so that he himself required low environmental temperatures to survive. Armed with a freeze gun and body armor, he is a genius with a grudge against the Batman for the many times he has been foiled by the Detective. He isn’t an evil man though. He just can’t bear to see his beloved go. Who can’t relate to that on some level?

Also, screw that New 52 retcon that made him into an obsessive stalker. My Victor Fries will always be a man who loves and was loved.

  1. Solomon Grundy

I went back and forth on whether or not to include Cyrus Gold aka Solomon Grundy on this list. He was originally a foe of the Justice Society, but, in recent years, he has gone toe-to-toe with the Batman quite often. I decided to include him as an excuse to talk about Solomon Grundy some more. He’s a rage-driven beast, but he doesn’t actually hold much malice in his heart. He is often a pawn, a puppet, in the schemes of others. Plus, f that time Batman brought him food on Thanksgiving doesn’t warm your heart, then I don’t know what would. He’s a mammoth beast with minimal intellect, but he is strong enough to throw down with Superman. What’s not to like?

  1. Deadshot

          Floyd Lawton may not harass the Dark Knight too much these days, but, when he first hit the scene, it was in Gotham trying to beat Batman at his own game. He has gone to battle with the Caped Crusader on many occasions since, and it’s always been a rough bought for Gotham’s resident hero. Deadshot is the best marksman in the world, and he never wastes a bullet. He’s also reckless, probably has a death wish, and really only does it for the reputation he has. We’ve talked about Deadshot before on this site, so I won’t go on much more. I just love Deadshot, and he will always be one of my favorite DC rogues.

  1. Scarecrow

I absolutely love the Scarecrow. From his creepy, spindly form to his obsession with exploring the depths of fear in himself and others, Jonathan Crane is a force to be reckoned with in Gotham’s underworld. His fear toxin is potent and will make you face your worst nightmares. His costume is unnerving. His intelligence is among the greatest in Gotham. All this, and he has the ability to make Batman experience the worst moment in his life on repeat.

Honorable Mentions

The Dollmaker

Tony S. Daniels introduced Barton Mathis at the beginning of his New 52 run of Batman: Detective Comics. The rogue has not shown up since with the exception of a weak appearance in Arrow, and apparently in Gotham and Batman vs. Robin. This guy is freaking creepy. He takes body horror to the David Cronenburg/Lucio Fulci level. He performs reconstructive surgeries on people, making them into patchwork monstrosities to do his bidding. He was the one who infamously cut off the Joker’s face at the behest of the Clown Prince. He posed a dangerous threat to the Dark Knight, and I hope he shows up again someday.

Poison Ivy

Pamela Isley is an individual who can see the damage we are doing to our planet, and a serum gave her the ability to communicate with and control plants. She is not an entirely malicious person; she merely thinks that humanity has done more than its fair share of damage to Earth. Due to her connection with vegetation, she favors their welfare of people, and her pheromones give her the ability to control men. She is a brilliant femme fatale and one of the coolest villains in Gotham.


A man with two personalities, Harvey Dent’s decisions come down to the literal flip of a coin. He can be merciful or ruthless. He can be intelligent or impulsive. He can save your life or end it. He is also a respected crime lord in Gotham, and he has carved out a name for himself despite the odds. Like I said, I like crime lord characters, and Two-Face is one of the best in Gotham.

Venom #1 (2016) Review

Venom #1 (2016) Review

A Price to be Paid

Mike Costa (W), Gerardo Sandoval (A), Dono Sánchez Almara

Cover by Gerardo Sandoval

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Price: $3.99

          What? A review on a Friday? Is that even legal? Well, according to my lawyers (me in a monocle), it is! Finals week is done, the semester is finished, and it’s time to talk about some Sweet Christmasing comic books!

I know this comic is about half a month old now, but I have to review it. It’s Venom, it’s replacing my 5th Favorite Marvel Hero, Agent Venom, and, well, it’s actually a pretty interesting comic to talk about.

I’m pretty freaking disappointed that they are replacing Flash Thompson as Venom. Like I’ve said numerous times, he’s one of my favorite Marvel Heroes of all time. However, I would be lying if I said I never expected it to happen, just like I probably shouldn’t have been surprised to figure out that Kaine the Scarlet Spider (another character I adore, Minimum Carnage was a fantastic story for me) died at the end of Spiderverse recently, but I did when I looked at an issue of Amazing Spider-Man with good ole’ Kaine Parker on the cover.

I was, however, surprised to figure out that the symbiote was not reverting back to Eddie Brock. We are getting yet another new Venom. I’m not complaining, but it was surprising. That being said, Eddie Brock hasn’t been Venom proper in over a decade now. That means for roughly half the character’s existence, the person who is most well-known for being Venom hasn’t actually been Venom. Mac Gargan was Venom for the latter half of the 2000’s. My boy Flash Thompson was Venom from 2011 until—well now. So it probably shouldn’t have been too surprising that they would find someone else to get ahold of the suit, even an all-new character like Lee Price.

The book begins with stone-faced drifter Lee Price getting a message about a job from a friend. We simultaneously get a look at the Venom symbiote on its own looking very sickly. Price gets to the meeting about the job and finds his friend Tony and former-Venom current-Scorpion Mac Gargan. Price and Tony are told about a protection job which they accept.

We briefly return to the symbiote as it inhabits an inebriated homeless man. The bond proves incompatible and this further weakens Venom.

Price and Tony are at the scene of their job when they are confronted by a different crew, and we find out that Price and Tony’s real boss is none other than the Black Cat. They are offered the chance to run, but Price insists on payment. Before a bullet is put in his head, the Venom symbiote arrives and attaches to Price.

We then get a history of Price as the symbiote discovers it. He had a rough home life with an abusive father. He joined the military where he lost two fingers, and the symbiote tells Price about its tenure with Flash Thompson and the admiration it holds for him.

This rings hollow for Price, who proceeds to brutally murder all of the opposing gangsters to the symbiote’s misery. He then kills his friend Tony and the homeless man as Venom continues to plead for him to stop. We get more history from Price as he talks about a mutant friend he had as a child who was killed in a fire of his own making after G-men tried to arrest him.

The comic ends with Price taking the materials he was hired to protect, destroying all evidence, and returning to a warehouse with the suffering symbiote in tow.

This comic is actually really, really good. I almost hate that since I already miss Agent Venom, but, at the same time, I could get used to Lee Price.

This book does a lot of things that you don’t see often in comics. You get a feel for what it’s like to be a small fish in this world of heroes, gods, and monsters. Price is just a normal man. Well, not a normal man, but we’ll get to that in a second. That being said, he is bottom-rung. He was made into a disposable underling for Black Cat. His friend as a child was the one to get mutant powers. He has come into contact with this world, as almost everyone in this universe must at some point, but he has never been a part of it.

Price is also a proper sociopath. This guy is a cold-blooded sonuvabitch as we see in this comic. He’s not cackling and manic like the Green Goblin or Carnage. He isn’t talkative like Doctor Doom. He’s not a dumb brute like Absorbing Man. There’s nothing redeemable about him like Magneto or even previous Venom Eddie Brock. He is cold, quiet, and malicious. When the symbiote attaches itself to him, he only sees it as an opportunity to get his.

This also allows for the comic to invert the “man vs. the beast inside” narrative that Marvel loves so much. When I say that, think characters like the Hulk, Wolverine, Ghost Rider, and even Venoms Eddie Brock and Flash Thompson. Marvel loves to tell stories about heroes who are fighting something big and ugly inside of them that manifests itself in literal ways. This is different. The symbiote has been redeemed by Flash Thompson and his trip to the Klyntar homeworld. It wants to do good and be a hero, but it makes the mistake of latching onto Price, whom is a selfish and cruel individual. He executes his associate Tony without a second thought. This time the beast wants to redeem the man, but the man could care less. This even separates itself from Carnage, which is a monster in sync with another monster named Cletus Cassidy.

The pacing is really good in this comic. It explains itself perfectly, Price is characterized really well, and the action comes at the right moment. It never drags, but it doesn’t rush itself either. It’s a story with a lot of confidence in itself.

The art is perfect for the comic too. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing Sandoval’s artwork back when he was on Al Ewing’s New Avengers. It’s very stylistic and perspective-based. Characters do tend to look a little different from panel-to-panel, but it works because they don’t look too odd or unappealing. It even looks better in this comic, as Venom is already an amorphous beast. It fits his design, and we get to see him distort and twist in interesting ways. The faces are very expressive too, and you can see a character’s mood without he or she needing to say a word. He even manages to give the symbiote itself some interesting expressions, especially when it is alone and ailing. Almara’s colors are very good too, with a lot of muted and darker shades that set the atmosphere perfectly.

This is the kind of villain book that I live for. It’s an interesting and brutal character study. It’s violent but thoughtful. It’s confident but approachable. I’m not sure it’s as good as Remender and Bunn’s Venom yet, but, as much as it pains me to say it, it’s already better than Venom: Space Knight (a comic I wanted to love but fell short). I know I’m a little late on this, but, if you haven’t picked this comic up yet, buy it. You won’t be disappointed.

Final Score: 9/10