Spider-Man Calls Out Big Marvel Cliché That MCU Should Avoid | Popgen Tech


Warning: Contains spoilers for Monica Rambeau: Photon #1Spider-Man called a big Marvel Comics cliché, that’s one MCU is wise to avoid. In Monica Rambeau: Photon #1, the titular heroine teams up with Spider-Man to stop a dangerous villain–and when she learns that this new threat used to be a scientist, she makes a sharp observation about how many of them are going crazy or going crazy. The Marvel Universe is full of mad scientists, to the point where it’s cliché and if the MCU wants to stay fresh and relevant, they should avoid it.


Photon visits Doctor Strange and Wong in the Sanctum Sanctorum when they suddenly hear a loud boom. Wong and Photon go out to investigate and discover a new villain named Hinge is responsible. Photon tries to fight Hinge, but they manage to conrt their body to avoid his blows. Spider-Man arrives on the scene to help and the two eventually overpower the villain. With Hinge now out of the reckoning, Wong turns them on–and readers learn that Spider-Man knows Hinge. Hinge’s real name is Doctor Yesenia Rosario, described by Spidey as “one of the most brilliant scientists” he already recognized. Hinge approaches and tries to attack again, but this time Wong hits him with a sleeping spell. Now passed out, Spider-Man calls the situation “sad,“saying,”another scientific mind…just shocked.” The issue was written by Eve Ewing, illustrated by Luca Maresca and Ivan Fiorelli, colored by Carlos Lopez and written by Clayton Cowles.

Related: Spider-Man’s Last Words Prove He’s the Ultimate Superhero

Mad Scientists Are A Classic Marvel Cliché

Spider-Man Photon Wong

When Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and others came together to create the Marvel Universe, their characters had science-based origins, as did many Silver Age heroes and villains. With the emphasis on science-based heroes came science-based villains–meaning extraterrestrials and mad scientists. Many of these mad scientists have been rejected by society for whatever reason, and they will take their issues out into the world. While mad scientists have been fixtures of comic books since the Golden Age, Marvel doubled down on it, creating characters like Norman Osborn and Doctor Octopus.

Mad scientists are a cliché not just in comic books, but in fiction as a whole–and it’s a trope that the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been wise to avoid. Many of Marvel’s first crop of mad scientists grew out of Cold War anxieties; the world is still reeling from the invention of nuclear weapons. Furthermore, at the time America was in a race with the Soviet Union to reach the moon first. Marvel creators capitalized on these anxieties, creating villains that would go on to become iconic. However, today there is no hysteria over nuclear war and the public seems to have taken an indifferent attitude towards science in general. To best reflect this shift in attitudes, the MCU should avoid mad scientists–or at least put a new spin on them.

Today, in a world plagued by rampant economic inequality, billionaires are the perfect villain; Superman’s arch nemesis Lex Luthor is proof of this transformation, transitioning from a mad scientist to a corporate warrior. However, mad scientists continue to be villains, and in a world out of touch with science, their stock as villains fades. Spider-Man is taught that Marvel Universe is crammed with them, and it is a cliché MCU must avoid.

Next: Why the First Avengers Team Ignored Spider-Man–Stan Lee Explains

Monica Rambeau: Photon #1 is on sale now from Marvel Comics!


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