Movies & TV / Columns

The Avengers’ Most Unpopular Members

April 29, 2020 | Posted by Steve Gustafson
Starfox Avengers

Welcome back! I’m Steve Gustafson and if you enjoy discussing anything comic book related, you’ve come to the right place. Each week we cover something in the industry and I always enjoy your input in the comment section below.

Previously on…


 
Last week we discussed our Thoughts on Rob Liefeld’s EKO 92. Here’s what some of you had to say:

Ken Wood: “I’ve never been his biggest fan. Youngblood was okay. Had plenty of potential but never really got it together in my opinion. Bloodstrike and Brigade were actually really good but, again, had plenty of potential without ever really getting it together. He just doesn’t seem to have long term down. Prophet seemed like it could’ve been cool. I don’t know, hopefully he finds success but he seems like he needs someone to take control of him and his stuff and give it a plan and strategy.”

Al Lobama: “I’m actually surprised that it took this long for Liefeld to think of doing an “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Youngblood!” team if he can’t have the real thing. Lord knows he was quick to come up with off brand Cables, Deadpools, Dominos, and Shatterstars as soon as he was gone from Marvel. And that’s not an insult, really, as using knock-offs as stand-ins for the real thing has been storytelling device in comic books for longer than most of us have been alive. If you hate EKO 92 on this principle alone, then you also have to hate Squadron Supreme. And if the storyteller is any good, they can take those “ripoffs” and turn them into something completely different while still keeping a simliarity to the character they’re supposed to be standing in for; like how the Astro City characters Samaritan, the Confessor, and Winged Victory can be similar enough to Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman to draw the comparison and yet are still unique enough be their own thing.”

Gil: “I remember reading the original article. Liefield should have chosen Youngblood as one of his choices when they were splitting up the comics. That way he doesn’t have to create a complete rip-off of the team and risk getting sued. Still, this Rev dude seems like a scummy guy. Best of luck to Rob.”
Thank you to everyone who commented!
This week we discuss…

The Avenger Most Unpopular Members

Go to your local comic book store and ask…hold on. Can’t do that currently. OK, ask the average person walking along the sidewalk…wait, that’s not very safe right now. Go online and ask friends and family who they know from the Avengers and you’ll hear names like Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow, and so on. 
You know who you’re not going to hear? Lightning. Or Rage.

That’s what we’re doing this week. Looking at those Avengers who aren’t mentioned as often, The ones who came and went without making much of an impact. Even ones who did make an impact but not in the best way. Like Hank Pym. Lots of history with him but he created Ultron, one of their greatest foes. Not too cool if you ask me. 

Or what about Stingray? I always though he had tons of potential and I have a discarded pitch I sent Marvel years back. Along with their rejection letter. Anyways, he’s not making any “Best of…” lists. Walter Newell designed the Stingray battlesuit, an armored exoskeleton suit designed mainly for underwater use. He’s like Aquaman without the royalty angle and not able to talk to fish. While super smart, he’s never really been able to stand out among the other geniuses the Avengers have had on the roster.

I know bringing up D-Man might draw some criticism, as he always has his defenders in the comments, but his character has never clicked with me. He’s strong, started off in a dirty original version of Daredevil’s costume, and gets mistake for being a chunky Wolverine. On top of that , I still remember the first issue of Kurt Busiek and George Perez’s Avengers run, the big joke was he stunk. He’s made other appearances but nothing I’ve particularly cared for. 

Triathlon, or also known as 3-D Man, has one of the worst costumes ever created. His powers include having three times the physical abilities of a man in peak physical condition and can heal three times as fast. His sight, hearing, smell are also hightened. Absolutely generic and that costume pulls him to the bottom.

Then we have Silverclaw. This souped up Tigra has the ability to mimic the physical characteristics of various animals native to rainforests and jungles. We’ve seen her reflect a jaguar, anaconda, cockatoo, monkey, sloth, puma, cheetah, and crocodile. Let’s be clear, she doesn’t morph into these creatures, just aspects of their characteristics. At least Tigra had some personality.

In today’s current culture, Starfox is one character that won’t be getting much spotlight. His powers are practically begging for him to be arrested for sexual assault. In fact, I vaguely remember him going to court for something along those lines in She-Hulk or something. See, Starfox can stimulate the pleasure centers in nearby people’s brains, making them open to suggestion. Remember the Purple Man from Jessica Jones? Kinda like him but not as violent. Oh, and he’s brothers with Thanos. 

Doctor Druid is like a poor man’s Doctor Strange. His abilities were even activated by the Ancient One. All comparisons end after that. Shockingly, he once led the Avengers during a very low period and ended up betraying the team. Outside of that, he’s forgotten about.

Speaking of, the Forgotten One, or Gilgamesh, is a natural for this list. While Marvel has said his strength rivals Thor’s, the stories he’s been involved in don’t quite match up.

One character who has an interesting story is The Sentry. Back in the late 1990s, Paul Jenkins and Rick Veitch developed an idea about “an over-the-hill guy, struggling with an addiction, who had a tight relationship with his dog” into a proposal for Marvel Comics’ Marvel Knights line. Veitch suggested that the character could be woven into the history of the Marvel Universe but due to some cataclysmic event, all recollection of the Sentry would have been removed from everyone’s memory (including his own). Oh, and they tried to extend this into the real world, telling everyone he was a forgotten Marvel character. Cool story, horrible execution. 

Coming from outer space is Deathcry and I blame this on the extreme 90s. They slapped Deathcry on the team to give them some edge but turned out to be a member of no importance.

While Mantis might have found some mainstream love in Guardians of the Galaxy 2 , she was more of a footnote in the comic pages and one of the more weaker members of the team.

I could go on but I’ll turn it over to you. Who’s an Avenger you don’t like?

That’s all the time I have. See you next week!

article topics :

Avengers, Comics 411, Steve Gustafson