Wallbangers: Marvel Comics
The sheer quantity of works allow for plenty of Wall Bangers to accumulate over the years.
Though special mention goes to the following:
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- In Civil War: Frontline #11, reporter Sally Floyd accuses Captain America of being out of touch with the "real America" because he's focused on moral values such as truth, justice, and freedom, as opposed to the pop-cultural shallowness that she and all the "average Americans" she knows focus on, such as American Idol, MySpace, and YouTube. That concentrated essence of outspoken stupidity instantly cemented Sally Floyd's status as the Stupidest Person In Comics and the Goddess of it.
- It's not just that Sally Floyd is an incredible jackass. It's clear from the writing, particularly from the way that a man famous for speeches about doing the right thing no matter what bows his head and accepts this, that we're supposed to be on her side. According to the writers, MySpace, YouTube and American Idol are more important to Americans than truth, justice, freedom, and democracy. Even if they're right, it feels wrong.
- Thankfully, other Marvel comics started to criticize this. For instance, Floyd is ridiculed for it in the Patriot issue of a Young Avengers mini-series. Moon Knight also saved her from some street thugs in his own comic, and then stated that if he had known who she was, he wouldn't have bothered to help her.
- And then there was the "if I'm going to be paying for an army..." line. Far as this troper knows, heroes like Captain America don't collect "heroism checks" from a government extension. Sally Floyd, or Ben Urich never put money into a hero's bank account in their lives. So basically, she ends up saying that she hates paying for being saved on a daily basis, and now, unlike before, that she's going to actually pay for it, she'd rather be paying for a service she was getting for free. Yeah.
- World War Hulk: Frontline parodies this with Top 10 Reasons to Hate Sally Floyd. #1 features her drunkenly kicking dirt onto Captain America's grave and asking him when was the last time he posted on YouTube. Also there was the time she dated Captain Rectitude, which is apparently "you don't want to know" territory.
- Many who didn't have a problem with Floyd spewing such ignorance (Far too many people IRL feel that way) had a MAJOR problem with Cap sitting there, shame-faced, taking it. (Which is one of the major reasons the "Cap's Response◊" photoshop is so popular)
- Cap himself provides material for one of these, when he says that all America accomplished World War II was "wasting the potential of a million young men." Firstly, that statement is factually incorrect - US casualties in WWII were less than half of that number. Secondly, whilst war is tragic and never to be condoned, America fought against two of the most evil systems of government in the world. There is no way those young men "wasted" their lives, and it demeans their sacrifice to suggest that they did. He also suggests that America "didn't know what it was getting into", which is untrue - America wasn't "getting into" anything. Roosevelt and some others wanted to get involved, but couldn't until America was dragged into WWII by Japan and Germany's aggression. All in all, the gist of Cap's speech is that America shouldn't have got involved in WWII, which not only doesn't gel with his previous characterization, is also morally untenable - what was America supposed to do? Let either Nazism or Communism overrun Europe and Japanese colonial occupation overrun Asia? Sure! The world would be in great shape these days!
- This becomes even worse was you remember that Steve willingly signed up for WWII (In fact, he was refused for being sickly) to stop Nazi Germany and would not have gotten his powers had he not put his potential in the position to "be wasted." This troper is pretty much certain that the above statement was just an attempt to villainize Cap, and is still an incredibly distasteful thing to use to do that.
- In the same issue that she declares her opinion on what the American way is, Sally Floyd and Ben Urich confront Iron Man and tell him that they found out about his plan to start a war with Atlantis in order to make the pro- and anti-registration sides join forces against a common enemy. That plan would also have provided him with some tidy war profits from Stark Industries' contracts with SHIELD, which he would then funnel into his pet projects like nanite-controlled supervillains, prisons in the negative zone, and cloning his dead friend, who happens to be a God. Anyone who has ideas like that cannot be trusted with the power Stark got after Civil War. But Floyd and Urich, without any logical reason, decide not to tell the public about Stark's plan and applaud him for his stoic "heroism." And they dare call themselves reporters!
- This is the moment that cemented Iron Man as a villain, even though the writer Paul Jenkins intended to show what he planned as a necessary evil or "shooting the dog." Starting a war that could kill millions of civilians because of a comparatively "trivial" issue of a few hundred people blowing up is beyond excuse. And this is coming from someone who otherwise agreed more with Iron Man's argument than with Cap's, but it also completely contradicts Stark's otherwise extreme philanthropic, heroic moral fiber, and the story has been completely ignored and never referred to again by anyone. Which still isn't the right approach of course, as it is still in continuity. Better to offhand retcon it into a Skrull, mind-control, or similar.
- He was going to start this war by having a nanite-controlled Norman Osborn, aka the Green Goblin, shoot an Atlantian Ambassador at a diplomatic negotiation! <shudder> To keep Osborn from revealing this, he puts him in charge of the other nanite-controlled supervillains of the Thunderbolts, which put Norman in a position to take over SHIELD after Tony screws up during the Secret Invasion.
- Tony's villanous streak goes for miles. Lying to and constantly watching Spider-Man; his detainment method being unconstitutional and lawless since there is no due process whatsoever, just "bag'n'tag"; the New Thunderbolts; the prison in the negative zone which is basically a passive torture chamber; beating the snot out of Peter at the first sign of trouble; constantly excusing the murder his Robo!Thor committed; constantly playing the Stamford angle to justify anything he does; having possibly made it so that Nitro got his hands on MGH in the first place; gauging his assets to make a mint of SHRA; war-profiteering; using Norman Osborn to start a war with Atlantis so that solidarity can be achieved via an outside enemy (the only other way to do so being "uniting for a common cause"); forcing Wakanda's hand by demanding that Ororo register before entering the White House on a scheduled appointment, since she's a dual-citizen (and the status of those are not yet clear, if memory serves); attacking Black Panther and his envoy, all representatives of another nation, without provocation; attempting to kill Black Panther in broad daylight; hypocrisy; and finally, even if on-demand, killing Happy. And he thinks that some good came out of the whole ordeal because he didn't drink. He thinks it's a good thing he didn't drink when many suffered, died (Captain America included), got arrested, are suffering, will continue to suffer, etc. That, as an alcoholic, he made progress, and that's the silver lining. Oh, and just to note, he makes a big deal out of Project Wideawake being the alternative to the SHRA, but sees no problem working with Maria fucking Hill, who would've been leading that one.
- Pretty much everything related to Civil War was a horrific Wall Banger, though the height of awful was Tony Stark's completely irrational Face-Heel Turn (and the writers' insistence that it was in-character and hero-compatible and not a Face-Heel Turn) from a man with such deep moral principles and who strongly rejected the "ends justify the means" philosophy that a major part of his origin story has him convert Stark Industries from an arms manufacturer to a futuristic technology R&D because he found the idea of developing lethal weapons abhorrent, funded the Avengers and used his money and influence to vigilantly protect them all from exactly the same kind of crap they were subjected to after the bombing that kicked off Civil War, whose Rogues Gallery included people who wanted to take over Stark Industries to develop the same kind of amoral abominations that Nazi-Stark used during Civil War, and who for decades had been portrayed as a person who would do anything for his friends and colleagues (especially his BFF Captain America), including sacrifice his life in a heartbeat several times over rather than risk one of theirs; into a ruthless manipulative Nazi who would engage in any number of horrific actions just because he though a SHRA was a good idea that should be implemented. Not to mention that he knows perfectly well how dangerous superheroes handing over their secrets is, and has refused to create blueprints for or tell anyone how to make his Iron Man armor out of fear that the information could fall into the wrong hands and be used for destruction.
- Also, Reed Richards being Pro-Reg in the first place, when in the past he explicitly said the idea of a SHRA was a stupid idea and spent an entire issue (Fantastic Four #336) outlining the reasons for why passing one would cause more harm than good. And no, he never was shown changing his mind, since he has always had an extremely dim opinion of the government's ability to deal with superheroes. It was just a irrational flash of whatthehellery that handwaved decades of past characterization. Not to mention that he is so ethical he once saved Galactus's life because he could not rationalize letting an unmalicious being die, yet during Civil War decided it was a good idea to make, program, and sic an evil Thor clone on his friends.
- Reed Richards shows many signs of being an abusive asshole where Susan Storm is concerned. He repeatedly lies to her, and when each layer is discovered he claims it is to protect her, every single time, all but telling her that she is a Damsel in Distress (hint: the same excuse is often used to explain why you beat one of her guy friends up); the letter he sends her reads like a man in love when taken out of context, but when placed back into the context, it reads like a typical abusive boyfriend pleading to have his girl back so he can continue as before. Of course, that Sue Storm decides to get back together with him after discovering he concocted the entire goddamn scheme after he read an Asimov book, makes a Wallbanger out of my head (a wall is involved.)
- Before the SHRA was a law, Cap is walking around with Maria Hill, and he says he won't enforce the SHRA. She immediately tries to arrest him. He beats up several soldiers, jumps out the window, and hijacks a fighter jet from the outside by embedding his shield into the canopy and telling the pilot where he wants to go. Awesome as it is, it still doesn't change that Hill tried to arrest him for saying he would not enforce a law that wasn't in force yet. The most they should've been able to do is court-martial and fire him, like they've done before - and even THAT assumed that Hill, as director of SHIELD, actually had the authority to do so (Whether or not SHIELD was an international group or under the Department of Defense seemed to change Depending on the Writer.)
- Maria Hill seems to serve as a one-woman rabid-response machine throughout the entire storyline, to the point where she might as well be HYDRA.
- In Ultimate Marvel's Crisis Crossover event Ultimatum, every character insists on referring to every other character by name, which is bad writing. The random deaths of characters have long since ceased to be interesting. The thing that sends the comic flying at the wall? Wasp is dead, and the Blob is eating her.
- This happened less than a month after her 616-verse counterpart was given a badly-handled death at the end of Secret Invasion.
- This was after her magical transformation from Asian to White in Ultimates 3, right?
- Wasp caused a few Wall Bangers herself. When Captain America gets squicked by Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch's incestuous relationship, Janet insults him for having outdated 1940s morality and being unable to accept that "love is love" in any form. And apparently, the reader is meant to agree with Wasp.
- House of M came about because Quicksilver was afraid the Avengers and X-Men would kill Wanda because her powers were out of control; it was even suggested that this might be necessary. This was around the time Astonishing X-Men was running a story arc about a way to remove mutant powers, seemingly safely and permanently. Poor Communication Kills.
- The over-arching plot in Avengers vs. X-Men is that the Phoenix Force is returning to Earth, keying in on Hope Summers. The Avengers and a few of the X-Men want to try and hide Hope from the Phoenix, fearing that if the Phoenix gained a human host, it would be Dark Phoenix all over again. Among the current X-Men is Rachel Summers... the last human host of the Phoenix Force, who wielded the power for years as a hero and never once went as out of control as The Avengers have talked about. You'd think someone, like say Wolverine, who is an Avenger and knew both Rachel and Jean Grey, would mention this. Nope. You'd think the X-Men — many of whom, like Logan, were teammates with both Phoenixes — would mention this or the fact that Jean didn't really go crazy until her mind was mucked with by Mastermind? Again, nope. Rachel herself? Again. No. (Something noted by the webcomic ComicCritics) Basically the laziest, dumbest Excuse Plot ever devised to set up a Crisis Crossover EVER. (And with competition like Civil War and Dark Reign, that's saying something.)
- But okay, let's just say the Avengers are still nervous, because the Phoenix is killing billions on its way to Earth and having history with only two hosts isn't enough to alleviate concern. Fair enough right? So the Avengers want to take Hope off-world, so in the event that if she becomes the host and does go crazy, she won't spit-roast earth. Again, fair enough. But the X-Men don't want that, because they've practically canonized her as their messiah and want to use her to rekindle mutantkind and as a big stick against anti-mutant humans. So rather than just having Hope meet the Phoenix in deep-space, they want her to stay right on Earth and gamble with the lives of seven billion people so they can have more mutants.
- And even better, neither side has come together to work for a solution. The Avengers just demand for Hope to be handed over, and the X-Men will hold onto her at all costs. Meanwhile, the Phoenix is immolating billions more people as it gets closer every passing day. Way to protect humanity and mutants, everybody. *slowclap*
- This only continues when the mandatory Plot Twist hits, with five X-Men splitting the Phoenix instead of it going to Hope. The Phoenix Five immediately forget that they wanted to restore depowered mutants, and instead decide to make the world a better place. The world that fears and hates mutants is quite happy with this.
- Oh, but the five who got possessed? Three have been known threats to humanity in general more than once (Emma Frost, Illyana Rasputin, Namor), one just finished a very short tenure as the host of Cyttorak (Piotr Rasputin), and the last is Scott fucking Summers, who has been written as nothing short of a military cultist since the X-Men moved to San Francisco. But when the Avengers call bullshit on this, the X-Men treat them like anti-mutant stormtroopers who are just sulking about not getting to be the heroes anymore until, surprise!, Rogue finds out the hard way that the Phoenix power is going to the new hosts' heads, and Illyana is imprisoning captured Avengers in hellholes in Limbo.
- To make matters worse, the treatment of Scott Summers is getting worse by the issue. Yes, Scott has been very Templar-like (itself something which has caused a very vocal backlash from the internets), but in his case it's understandable: Almost every mutant was either depowered or dead, Scott was in the beginning of a Trauma Conga Line, and the very worst of the X-Men's enemies were gunning for whatever was left. So, his behaviour was at he very least understandable (he's even admitted many times that he doesn't like doing what he's doing, but he has to for the sake of what's left). In short, it was a Bad Future storyline set in the present. During AVX, however, Scott is turned into one of the Phoenix Five, he still tries to use the insane levels of power for good, but over the course of the story he ends up first depowering and nearly killing Emma Frost, and successfully killing Charles Xavier, his father figure, before becoming Dark Phoenix. That's right, they've given Cyclops, one of the most important and iconic members of the X-Men and one of the most well known Marvel Characters a complete and total Character Assassination. Now, it's not the first time editorially mandated stories have destroyed characters, Civil War and OMD both nearly killed Tony Stark and Peter Parker, but unlike them, they didn't have prior Never Live It Down status (Scott has, previously, had a failed marriage which he was blamed entirely for, and prior to his second wife/first love interest's death he had an 'affair' (as in, Emma Frost took advantage of some mental problems and had psychic sex, something that if real and without the psychic part, would be considered rape and she'd be facing jail time), both of which are still cited today as reasons to hate the character). Fans of the character will be unable to forgive Marvel for this, while the character's Hate Dom will never let him be redeemed for something that was completely out of his control.
- Captain America and the Avengers in general take major levels in both dumbass and jerkass in this event. First of all, Captain America goes to Utopia and tries to force the leader of a sovereign nation to give up his adopted daughter by threatening him. Way to be diplomatic, Steve. Then after he refuses and tells them to leave the Avengers decide to kidnap the kid because they know more about the Phoenix than the X-Men do and they've always taken such an interest in mutant affairs before. Later Tony Stark the genius that he is separates the Phoenix into five parts with each part taking control of one of the X-Men. Good job, Tony. After which Cyclops goes around the world fixing the world's problems by ending wars and feeding the hungry. Captain America and his gang harass him at every turn, but even though he's far more powerful than them at this point he doesn't kill anyone. His partners start going off the deep end, but he keeps it together. The X-Men switch sides because the other Phoenix Five have been corrupted, but not Scott. So they go and join the Avengers and Professor X. Professor X and Doctor Strange start messing with Scott telepathically and mystically while the Avengers beat down his girlfriend and Professor X implies that he's going to mindwipe him. Captain America tries to arrest him for Crimes Against Humanity. Apparently in his world feeding the hungry and ending war is a terrible thing. And one of his oldest friends, Ice Man, basically says that he hates him. He repeatedly tells them to stop forcing his hand, but they keep going. Xavier keeps on yelling at him, telling Cyclops that he's going to shut him down and that he's disappointed in him. Finally he kills Professor X in self-defense while crying that he forced his hand. Almost every problem that comes about in the story is provoked by the Avengers in one way or another and the sad thing is, by the end of this Cyclops will be considered villain of the story.
- Another exhibit of "Why Chuck Austen Should Never Be Allowed To Handle Romance Ever": his treatment of Hank Pym, Janet van Dyne, and Clint Barton during his run on The Avengers — specifically, the decade-late resurrection of the "WIFE BEATER" meme and his failure at treating the characters as anything more than cardboard cut-outs with writer-imposed Issues pasted on.
- Avengers Disassembled. It retconned out that Wanda already remembered her children to justify her going insane at the revelation of them. Then there's Doctor Strange's stupid comment about chaos magic not existing when he himself had used it in past stories. (This ended up being one of the big factors taken on in the What If...? for the story. Strange claimed that he'd been busy elsewhere, and that the one they saw at the destroyed Avengers Mansion was a decoy made by Wanda.) The Avengers hand Wanda over to Magneto with no questions asked. This was what set up House of M, one of the most hated storylines in X-Men history. And then there was the writer's I Meant to Do That at the end. If he had known as much about continuity as those tossed-in pages implied, then the story never would have happened in the first place.
- Note that, shortly after Bendis retconned William and Thomas into soulless automatons who had never existed, they turned out to have been reincarnated as Billy "Wiccan" Kaplan and Tommy "Speed" Shepherd of Young Avengers. How does one reincarnate someone who has ceased to have ever been incarnate?
- Then there's the fact that Wanda, whose powers had been impressive enough but not outlandish, suddenly became omnipotent, on a level that she could threaten the existence of not just the multiverse, but the entire omniverse. She could now eat the original version of the Beyonder for breakfast and use Galactus as a toothpick if she wanted. Not only is no explanation given for how this happened, but none of her friends even try to figure out how it happened.
- The existence of at least one What If? issue dedicated to this mess means there is at least one alternate world with another version of Wanda capable of erasing all reality. Probably more. Even Mad Jim Jaspers and the (sigh) Marquis of Death were at least established to be unique in the multiverse. If there are a bunch of batshit-crazy omnipotent Wandas running around, how is anything still here?
- Even without going into all the retcons and general nonsense, there's the conversation that apparently started off the whole thing: Janet's discussion with Wanda about superheroes having children, which ends with the phrase "and you thought you could have two?" Wanda's twins may had been retconned to be nothing more than soulless constructs (and YMMV on that), but that doesn't change the fact that Wanda carried them to term, gave birth to them, and entirely believed they were her children. Is there ever a point that joking about one of your best friends essentially losing her children fails to be too freaking soon?
- An early issue of Bendis' Avengers Assemble has Natasha kiss Clint after they talk about how they're such close friends. Immediately after the kiss, Natasha snaps that he has a girlfriend (Jessica Drew) and storms out as Clint tries to say something. However, there are two massive problems with this. 1. Natasha was dating Bucky at the time. 2. Natasha kissed him first, knowing full well that he had a girlfriend. Not only was the kiss itself hugely out of left field (Clint and Natasha broke up years ago, Clint has been married since, and they've never shown any interest in each other for a long time), but it makes Natasha look like a massive hypocrite.
- Avengers Prime: Captain America, who was dating Sharon Carter at the time, who happens to be his primary love interest and has been on-and-off for over forty years, cheats on her by kissing an elf girl in one of the nine realms. He doesn't regret it right after, he doesn't feel guilty. One might get the feeling that Brian Michael Bendis, the series writer, simply didn't do the research. Until the end of the series, when he kisses her again, in view of both Iron Man and Thor. Who then have a chuckle and remark, "Isn't he dating someone on Earth?" So yes, Bendis DOES know the character is dating someone, and he doesn't give a shit, portraying the Marvel Universe's pinnacle of heroism, morality and character as cheater, and his two closest friends who are among the finest heroes of MU as a pair of douche-bros.
- Mighty Avengers #34 is headache-inducing. Between Pym allowing Pietro to torture Loki for information on Wanda, whom he'd been impersonating for months; Thor showing up to rescue Loki; the ensuing fight having Thor go full on arrogant-asshole-god mode by proclaiming that no one was allowed to judge Loki but other Asgardians (you know, the idiots he's been manipulating for centuries); Pym, out of nowhere, inviting Loki to join the team; and every member of the team walking out in response. Yes, the writer had to break up the team somehow, since the series is ending soon and some of the characters were required in other plotlines; but this issue was solicited three months before its release. Wasn't there time to make a breakup that made sense?
- It goes From Bad to Worse. There's the Ten Billion Bride Hive Mind. Janet's body was revealed as having become the Big Bang to start a new dimension, and Dimension!Jan is controllable because her soul's not in it — and Ultron and Jocasta both control it. Jocasta agrees to marry Ultron, and Pym is drafted as the unwilling techno-priest. Ultron goes to live in Dimension!Jan, and Jocasta uses her regained bodyhopping ability to go back and forth between that world and the central one. The entire series finale was an exercise in wallbanging What the hell?. Thankfully, from the looks of it, Christos Gage is currently ignoring all of the above in Avengers Academy.
- Unfortunately, no, he didn't. While issue seven had the perfectly legitimate explanation that Pym was waiting to bring Janet back until he was sure he could bring her back whole, because she'd had a longstanding fear of ending up like her mother, who'd essentially become a vegetable after a brain injury, issue eleven completely blew that out of the water with the revelation that the dimensional entity isn't even really Jan, it's actually Korvac's wife, Carina, who'd disintegrated herself to get away from him and her molecules got mixed in with Jan's, as the dominant form and personality. In other words, even if Jan could technologically be brought back, without some reality warping, she wouldn't even have her original body to come back to, as it no longer exists because that body is now solely Carina's. My God, cut the woman a break already. Aside from the fact of how shitty her death was to begin with, I think more than enough posthumous indignities have been piled on by now.
- All of this crap has now been retconned out. Ultron and Jocasta went to live on an unidentified alien planet, not the Van Dyne dimension, and are both back on Earth now. Janet was never dead, but she shrunk down to the Microverse when Thor was about to banish (read: kill) her, which burned out the Skrull bomb she'd been turned into. She was rescued by the Avengers and is ready for a new round of abuse.
- A minor yet prominent Wall Banger related to the above: How did they managed to capture Loki? I mean, come on, Loki has already escaped from much worse than that, like being trapped in a tree, in a isolated dimension, and even being turned into stone by Seth! And no, I don't agree with the "because he was trapped through technology, which he has very little experience with" argument. Remember that Loki escaped from an energy draining machine from Celestials (who themselves are way more than the whole Skyfather council) in possesion of friggin Apocalypse for cry out loud!
- For many fans, The Sentry: Fallen Sun has a story worse than even the Incredibly Lame Pun in the beginning. The story is that the Sentry, having been killed by Thor after giving in to his Superpowered Evil Side and threatening the universe and possibly even killing his wife, is remembered positively at his funeral. Rogue of the X-Men runs off distraught since, apparently, the Sentry was the only one she could touch. It is revealed that she slept with him; this is discussed in a single panel between Johnny Storm (The Human Torch) and Cyclops. (For a full analysis of why this sucks, see here.) The Thing admits that he hated the Sentry because he was a better man than he was for not killing the Wrecker, before he'd killed a group of schoolkids on a bus For the Evulz, which is out of character for the Thing, the Sentry, and the Wrecker. (Remember the reason for this funeral.) Tony Stark talks about how he was nothing but a drunk before the Sentry came along. Daredevil talks about how he was a good counsellor. Dr. Strange basically says that, for someone with the power of a million exploding suns, he taught him a lot about darkness. They pay their last respects. Stark gives them beer (despite that being a drunk bit), and they disperse. All these events were conveniently Retconned in and never shown. But the readers are supposed to empathize with the guy who nearly destroyed the world...
- Reed Richards then finds the last letter from his BFF the Sentry with his Robot Buddy C.L.O.C., which implies that he may return. (This is why Marvel Comics should never do funeral storylines.) Honestly, the whole thing was nothing more to show how fabulous the Sentry was. We're told that the pivotal moments of the lives of the major Marvel heroes... Happened because of the Sentry, which he couldn't do without Retcons. All we saw of him in life was his being agoraphobic and schizophrenic and being Achilles in His Tent when the shit hit the fan. At least Paul Jenkins clearly showed us what he was intended to be: a Gary Stu, whose claim to greatness was Remember the New Guy with a failed attempt of Too Good for This Sinful Earth... which makes less sense when you consider that he ripped Spider-Man villain Carnage in half and did the same to Ares after he went crazy. Even in death, some bullshit about the greatness that is the Sentry comes to light.
- In Ultimate Fantastic Four, evil zombie counterparts of the eponymous team are locked up in a high security cell. Evil!Mister Fantastic tells the guards that he converted a ballpoint pen into a teleporter and is about to set the team free. The four disappear, and the guards think they are gone and open the door to the cell. What they planned to do if it had been a teleporter is unknown. But stopping a second to consider that one of the baddies involved could turn things and people invisible would have been a good idea.
- The evil zombies immediately point out how stupid the guards are for taking such obvious bait before, y'know, devouring their flesh.
- It's not entirely outside the realm of possibility that Reed Richards could make a teleporter out of a pen, some hair and mashed potatoes. But the stupidity of opening the door immediately is not as bad as the fact that their holding cell doesn't have any readily accessible method of detecting otherwise invisible captives, given Sue's powers.
- In the same storyline, Richards refuses to kill the zombies even though he knows they are literally endangering all of humanity (it took the zombie virus literally 24 hours to wipe out their own world). There's a moral code, and then there's just stupidity...
- Doctor Doom has had a lot of Out of Character lines in later years, to the point he was once the trope image for Out-of-Character Moment. Like the infamous 9/11 comic, which has him crying in response to a terrorist attack. Yeah, right. Given how many times he's tried to destroy parts of New York, folks found that this made no sense whatsoever. Or as someone put it, if Doom had actually been offended by bin Laden's actions then you'd have known it from the part where he dumped bin Laden's smoking corpse on the front steps of the UN next week. The fact that he doesn't actually go after the terrorists — and remember, Doom is a head of state, and commands an arsenal (if not troops) equal to any First World superpower — implies that he just didn't care, making the tears even more unjustified.
- Reed Richards building an "Anti-Galactus Suit". Seriously. After encountering Galactus several times already, you'd think that building what is basically a giant mecha is one of the last things to drive off Galactus. Especially one that 1) Doesn't utilise the Power Cosmic, which to even stand a chance against him. 2) Doesn't use any of the energy-siphoning material Galactus uses and would hypothetically weaken him (like the last time he "died"). It's just as well he didn't fight Galactus with it, having to pull it out to fight another giant robot which inexplicably worfed many of the Earth's heroes. Reed also mentioned it cost a billion dollars for every second it even moved. So, it only has a stupid design, and an unrealistic function, it's also extremely cost-ineffective, and that's putting aside the potential property damage it can cause. Wow.
- "Fall of the Fantastic Four", the beginning arc of James Robinson's (yes, the same guy who gave us "JLA: Cry For Justice", which has its own slew of entries on Wallbangers for DC) run on the FF. OK, so, a horde of monsters broke through a dimensional portal in the Baxter Building and attacked New York? No problem, that's Tuesday for the FF. Johnny has temporarily lost his powers due to a side effect of the anti-cosmic gizmo Reed used to stop said monster horde and has decided to spend his time on the bench trying to be a full-time celebrity? Sure, that's an interesting possibility to explore for a while. The population of NYC is epically pissed off about said monster horde and decides to pursue a class-action suit against the FF? Um... well, that's new, but I suppose it's consistent with the post-Civil War tone of Marvel comics. And... as part of this class-action suit the Baxter Building is immediately 'secured as a crime scene' so that the FF cannot enter their own homes, their assets are apparently all frozen, they're suddenly attracting X-Men sized angry mobs, and a civil suit is also some kind of public tribunal where they're suddenly being prosecuted for every bad thing that ever happened in an FF comic? Um, what?
- Wait, and they're also using this as an excuse to declare the FF bad caregivers and take custody of all the Future Foundation kids? The place the kids end up to be 'taken better care of' is some kind of Weapon-X-esque lab where goons with guns scream at them, point guns at them, and send them to isolation cells to be studied like lab rats because it's "standard procedure"?
- Two of the things the FF is being accused of is 'not working with SHIELD to take down the wanted criminal Namor' and 'allowing Valeria to stay with the wanted criminal Victor von Doom'? Um, guys, while both of those guys are former or current supervillains, they're also sitting heads of state of nations diplomatically recognized by the US. By allowing this to be read into the record right then and there the judge has committed an impeachment-worthy offense, in knowingly filing arrest warrants vs. individuals with diplomatic immunity (and for that matter, getting involved in this at all instead of calling in the State Department the instant the legal case went international).
- And this is before we even get into the hilarious nonsense of apparently wanting to put Franklin and Valeria in the same lab later... and seeing as how one kid can smack Galactus and Mephisto around if he freaks out enough and the other one is a borderline-amoral supergenius who is currently staying with her legal guardian, Victor von Doom... um, good luck with that plan, you mind boggling idiots. Is the government suicidal? *THUMP of comic book hitting wall*
- Also noteworthy in that at the hearing, the judge interrupted the defense attorney with 'We've already established that the Richards' are wrong!' and made her sit down and stop talking. Oh really? And here we thought that the purpose of having a trial was for the jury to decide these things, after both sides had had a chance to present their case. Given how often this one comes up in comics stories (judges openly deciding a case, ignoring or overruling the existence of a jury), do writers even understand how a courtroom works in the US?
- There was a point in the Nineties where Mary Jane was killed off in a plane crash so that new stories about Swingin' Single Pete could be made. It did not work. MJ turned out to be not dead, and the whole mess was mercifully swept under the rug and forgotten. Of course, it seems certain people at Marvel didn't get the memo and decided to more or less try it again, but without her death involved. It still did not work.
- Another Spider-Man one: "Sins Past", where we find out that Gwen Stacy, in a moment of weakness, slept with Norman Osborn and got pregnant with twins; now the kids are back (with a Plot-Relevant Age-Up) and out to get Spider-Man. The original plan was that they were Peter's kids, but Quesada ruled that Pete was (or should be) too young to be a father. Unfortunately, this is still canon in the 616 Marvel Universe.
- To add insult to injury, Peter's reaction to learning this was ridiculous. He cried a bit, broke some furniture... and that's it. His only thoughts about kids are "They are all that's left of Gwen." Never mind that their father is his archenemy who killed his brother and his own child. And later he keeps her photo in his room. So Peter still views Gwen as some kind of a saint when a revelation like THIS should have shattered that image forever. That's a major Moral Dissonance. And, even though MJ hid this truth from him during their whole relationship, this never caused any problems later... If it had, we could've been spared that Deal with the Devil and its attendant baggage.
- After his Aunt May's wedding, Parker gets hammered and sleeps with his roommate Michelle (also drunk). Later they "reveal" that Michelle slipped Parker cider when he wasn't looking, so HIS inebriation was due to his own lack of experience being drunk.
- After Peter attends Aunt May's wedding, and starts drinking heavily when he sees Mary Jane, he wakes up in bed the next morning with Michele, his Tsundere roommate. Fair enough. He accidentally calls her "MJ". She throws him out of the house. She later leaves cookies out, but padlocks the fridge so Peter can't get any milk. The Chameleon later imitates Peter and sleeps with Michelle, and she thinks they're now boyfriend and girlfriend. Peter doesn't tell her what happened, until she ticks him off by forcing a curfew on him. She doesn't believe him, and punches him. When Peter's coworker ticks her off, she draws a line down the apartment, and destroys any of Peter's things on "her" side. At this point, the character is basically >90% Yandere, by volume.
- And fans still preferred her to Carlie.
- As if One More Day wasn't bad enough, Quesada has introduced Carlie Cooper, a new woman being pushed as Peter Parker's soul-mate, to the point where even MJ is telling him to be with her. Aside from being such a blatant Creator's Pet who looks more like Peggy Hill than anyone you'd want to date, there's two major problems with this: Carlie is supposed to be a stand-in for Joe Quesada's daughter to the point of being named after her... and Joe is using Peter as a stand-in for himself to the point of his looking like Joe in later issues. It may not be intentional, but it's still Squick.
- The amount of Creator's Pet Character Shilling going on with Carlie Cooper is bad enough, but the fact that their main strategies for trying to get fans to accept her as Peter's new girlfriend consist of that, and derailing every other character to do so. And of course, like all of Quesada's finest work, most of it is targeted at Mary-Jane. Although they've really taken the cake when they even went so far as to suggest Mary-Jane only loved Peter because he was Spider-Man, from PETER'S OWN MOUTH... Yeah, no she didn't. Otherwise she wouldn't have rejected Peter's marriage proposals twice, or refused dating him seriously for so long, when canonically she knew he was Spider-Man since the night Uncle Ben was killed. And in the retconned history presented in One Moment in Time she even refuses to marry him outright because he was Spider-Man. It doesn't even make sense in the newer continuity presented! Linkara went through a pretty damn big rant when JLA: Act of God suggested Lois only loved and married Clark for Superman. Can anyone imagine the rant he would go through if he ever reviewed the storyline where this was brought up?
- As the issues go on, it seems the current staff behind Spider-Man are trying their absolute hardest to make the fanbase like Carly, both as a character and as Peter's new girlfriend... it isn't working. All of their attempts are so far, making the fanbase dislike her even more and hoping for the day when him and Mary-Jane will be back together (should that day come). And relating to that last part in context with the first... throughout every single one of her appearances, Carly's design has never stayed consistent outside of her having glasses. She's gone from blonde, to brunette, to ginger whilst going from long hair, to shoulder length hair, to short hair, as well as having an incredibly non-distinctive facial design. So, when it looked like Peter was about to get into bed with a long-haired redhead with freckles in Amazing Spider-Man #658, certain fans were quick to point out that Carly looked suspiciously like Mary-Jane. What's wrong with this?... Making a disliked love interest look more like a more popular love interest, is not going to make people accept the status quo. If anything, it'll only help reinforce they want the old one back. And of course, there's the matter that Peter and Carly are already trying to sleep together here... when they've barely had any time to develop their relationship, especially compared with every single other prominent love interest Peter has ever had (making Carly the very definition of a Relationship Sue).
- ASM #659 has Carlie getting upset after finding out Peter lied to her, getting drunk, and plotting a way to get back at him. How? By getting a tattoo... of the Green Goblin. The guy who murdered Peter's first girlfriend. Especially galling when you consider that Gwen Stacy was retconned to be a childhood friend of Carlie.
- But in #660, it turns out that the tattoo she got was of Spider-Man's head instead. You heard that right, Spider-Man's head! This turned out to be a blatant Bait and Switch, all to make it clear just how perfect Carlie is!
- However as of Spider-Island's Finale, Carlie has broken up with Peter. And there was great joy in the land.
- And worse, The Green Goblin is now a symbol of White Supremacy in the Marvel Universe... For some reason. So, not only was she planning to get the tattoo of someone who killed his girlfriend and her childhood friend, but its also a symbol of Neo Nazism. While she doesn't go through with it, to even contemplate doing that makes her one of the least likable people since Sally Floyd.
- Even worse, Carlie is now one of the select few that know Peter and Spider-Man are the same person. This is something that only a privileged few get to know, and not even Aunt May is privy to that information anymore. What's worse, it was argued that she could "totally handle" the information had Peter just told her. But May, who we do know can handle it and handle it well, is still left in the dark and still argued that she couldn't deal with Peter being Spider-Man even though there are years of stories that show otherwise. So a character that has barely been in the book (and most likely won't be in the book for very long) is allowed to be in on the inner circle of a very private and exclusive club, but a character that has been in the books for decades and was previously one of these few secret keepers is no longer allowed to know.
- Not only that, but her finding out REALLY proves otherwise. When she found out, her reaction was to break up with him and call him out on lying to her, despite the fact that he's been Spider-Man a LOT longer than he knew her and all. So, this raises two points: Carlie's supposed ability to handle it is complete bull, and Carlie Cooper is now a non-rescuing example of an Entitled Bastard. Let me explain that, Carlie Cooper seems to think that Peter 'should have told her the truth' and shouldn't have lied to her about being Spider-Man, except that they'd ONLY JUST started going out. Did she just expect him to tell her when they first met, or during conversation? Peter would need to build up to telling her something so big, and she acts like she deserved to know it. If they were dating BEFORE he became Spider-Man, then sure, not telling her would be bad, but in universe, they've only known each other for about a year (a couple more in real life), and he hasn't told people like Harry or Robbie or even Aunt May (well, she DID know for a while, but not anymore) despite knowing them much longer. In short, she somehow feels she's entitled into his secret and he betrayed her by treating her as equally as he did with his family and friends. Bitch.
- Another big 'Carlie is great' moment of hackery would be one of the following issues after Spider-Island. Just when people were thinking that the writers had realized she was a horrible character and Peter and MJ were going to be finally reunited, somewhat evidenced by the fact that Joe Quesada had been replaced as EIC nearly a year ago and his current whereabouts unknown, with his name no longer popping up much, they decide to give one more fuck you to Carlie's detractors. In a moment of total Suefication, Carlie is the only person in the New York police department, or at least of the precinct she works at, who notices that the 'obvious accidental suicide victim' was too far from any great height to have caused his own death. Her captain, for some reason, rights it off as nonsense and ignores the obvious, until she points out why, which to anyone capable of becoming a police chief would have been obvious. To make her look like The Woobie, the chief then kicks her off the case for making him look stupid, forcing her to do the case herself when the chief closes it, and absolutely no one points it out. It's an utter insult to every real life police officer to say they could ever possibly be that incompetent to both miss obvious clues and to close a case just to spite one person. It's insulting to the readers to believe they would believe something like that would ever happen and that they would really have any sympathy for her in an obviously Idiot Plot set up. And lastly, it's almost a spit in the face to think any human being would ever be such a douche to do something like that, regardless of their position of power. This officially cements Carlie as the Creator's Pet. This is the moment that makes you realize that she's on par with Wesley Crusher.
- Now Carlie is the first and ONLY person to know about Otto taking over Peter's body in Superior Spider-Man. Let us detail how stupid it is that in the span of 25 issues, nobody else but super-special-awesome Carlie Cooper was the first and only person to deduce what anyone with two brain cells could have guessed. Spider-Man is probably the best known hero in the MU, having met everyone from God to the Punisher. The fact that his so-called friends, with their vast psychic, technological and even magical abilities, couldn't figure out something like this, couldn't investigate as soon as Spider-Man of all people started acting like a morally bankrupt supervillain, is already baffling. His friends, including super geniuses like Tony Stark and Reed Richards can't figure this out. His ex-wife, who knows him better than anyone else and has dealt with several people impersonating Peter in the past has basically said 'fuck it' and given up on him in Marvel's latest attempt to make the fans dislike her. But Carlie Cooper, who is now apparently a Batman-grade detective, has managed to figure the Doc Ock nonsense out completely on her own.
- Actually, Batman could have solved this case in his sleep. No, Ace the Bat-hound could have figured this out in his sleep. Do you wanna know how Carlie figures out what Doc's been doing? What super-complex, reality-warping trail of hidden clues she deciphered to learn this hidden secret? She follows the money trail Spidey's been using to pay for his goons and mechs, and the money comes from a bank account clearly under Doc Ock's name... that was all it took.
- It's not like Ock really tried very hard to hide the fact that he wasn't Peter. He acted pretty much the direct opposite of Peter, in front of people who should logically be able to tell. Case in point, his crossover in the 2013 Morbius series, he acted like an arrogant Jerkass, a far cry from Peter's Deadpan Snarker persona, to Morbius. He's been a Friendly Enemy to Spider-Man since the late 70's and has a genius level IQ. The fact that Morbius didn't recognize it is a Wallbanger unto itself.
- J. Michael Straczynski's run on Spider-Man had a couple of notorious Wall Bangers in its first story arc with Villain Sue Morlun, not the least of which was Spidey's assertion that Morlun was the first villain who really "ticked him off". Now remember, the Green Goblin (one of Spidey's oldest enemies) has murdered his first true love, kidnapped his infant daughter, ruined the lives of some of his closest friends, threatened his family, and made him doubt his existence by manipulating him into thinking he was a clone — in short, he's made Peter Parker's life a living hell. But Morlun made Spider-Man angrier than the Green Goblin ever did?
- In Brand New Day J Jonah Jameson becomes an eager supporter of Norman Osborn hailing him as a real American hero. Despite the fact that several years earlier Osborn bought his newspaper from under him via threatening to kill his family.
- After almost a decade of fan demand, the original Hobgoblin returned in Amazing Spider-Man #648. Chilling, cunning, and sane, Hobgoblin was one of the most unique, interesting, and underutilized of the Goblins, and is in the Magnificent Bastard comics section. During his career, he had three times fooled Spider-Man with red herrings. Finally, in a case of Know When to Fold 'Em, he set up a patsy, the third red herring, to take the fall and die for him while he retired. It was ten years before he reappeared. Finally brought to justice, he spends at most a month comic-book-time in prison before manipulating Norman Osborn into breaking him out. He then retires to the Caribbean to live off of his illicit gains. Surely, his return is going to epic. Wrong. After a decade of anticipation, the Hobgoblin is killed by a Z-list ex-superhero gone crazy named Phil Urich and replaced by said ex-superhero. This was after making the Hobgoblin the Kingpin's, one of Hobgoblin's old enemies, b—-h. They even have a line almost paraphrasing that. So first, they derail the Hobgoblin's characterization. Then they kill him off at the hands of a character nowhere near as skilled or powerful in a disrespectful manner without him putting up anything resembling a fight (I mean, if you're going to kill an awesome villain, it should be in awesome fashion) for nothing more than a cheap shock and what could possibly be a thinly-veiled Take That to fans demanding his return. They replace him with his killer, who when introduced had been written purposely as an incompetent hero who found himself way over his head, thus introducing yet another insane Goblin (how creative), as well as limiting future storylines with the original Hobgoblin. Why was killing Roderick Kingsley, the original Hobgoblin, necessary to make Urich the new Hobgoblin?! They could have easily made a Hobgoblin without resorting to offing the old one! Many fans have outright refused to believe that the Hobgoblin that was killed was Kingsley, preferring to assume that it was another stooge set up to take the fall, but seeing how the trend is in his appearances, it will probably be yet another (third) decade before he returns.
- Even if he is Z-list, there are people who remember reading and enjoying the "Green Goblin" series that first introduced Phil Urich, and many others who became familiar with an older version of the character from reading Spider-Girl. In the latter, Phil is a good friend and mentor to May Parker, and it's difficult not to like the guy. So to turn him into an insane killer is even more of a Wall Banger for fans of Phil due to the enormous Character Derailment.
- While that may have been revealed as a Bait and Switch and the original Hobgoblin is back (it was his wimpy Backup Twin that died), they've done it again to Ensemble Darkhorse Toxin: Fans have been wanting to see this guy back for a very long time... only for the symbiote to return, bond with Eddie Brock to turn him into a new Toxin, who's now returned Brock to his former psychopathic villain stage. While Brock was becoming a Knight Templar, it was to set up this event. Still, this is two buckets of Character Derailment: Eddie, right before this, was being praised for sacrificing his Anti-Venom abilities and was at his most heroic point in his life, willing to do anything to help anyone. Now he's a psycho villain again. Toxin meanwhile, was notable, and popular, for being a symbiote baby, he has no malicious purpose at all. He's completely innocent, and was terrified of being separated from his host Patrick Mulligan because he wasn't confident to bond to anyone else (he was bonded to Pat almost as soon as he was born). Now, he's a generic mind altering symbiote with no mention as to what happened to Patrick. The plot this extended from isn't particularly bad, but this is just, urk.
- We actually now know what happened to Patrick Mulligan. He was beaten to death by Blackheart. And it should be specified that this was not an epic or noble death that he suffered. Sure Pat as Toxin is outclassed by Blackheart a bit but Toxin is basically Spider-Man, Venom, and Carnage all rolled into one package with their weaknesses toned down significantly. That's mid level Thor villain threat right there and he should be an absolute bitch to put down even for most of the heavy hitters. But nope, he was literally "beaten to death in a gutter" (Direct quote from the Marvel Database). Seriously Marvel, what the hell?
- Here's an oldie for you. Listen: I respect Stan Lee, as well as all his contributions to the comic book genre. But that said, there are a couple moments even in his lengthy run that come a bit iffy. Many of them were times when he had trouble balancing Peter's problems as being a Cosmic Plaything and just coming off as Wangst. But there's also another one in particular that's made me go "What?" every single time I read it, even back when I was 10. It's in a very early issue where Flash and the other high school kids are all praising Spider-Man and then ask Peter about him. Peter says Spider-Man is horrible, bad mouthing himself which makes the other kids angry. The reason? He's afraid that if he says anything even remotely positive about Spider-Man, everyone will now automatically start suspecting he's Spider-Man. Again: What? I understand that it was a different period and all so the writing was a little simpler, but it still comes of as a ridiculous case of a character using Insane Troll Logic on himself more than anything else.