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Who are the biggest jobbers in comics?

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CharlesPhipps Author from Ashland, Ky Relationship Status: Lovey-Dovey
Author
Apr 11th 2018 at 3:03:49 AM

I use the wrestling term. Jobber

All supervillains exist to lose to the heroes but there's some guys who exist to lose without any sort of dignity whatsoever and never seem to have any real threat to them no matter how powerful they're supposed to be.

These are the guys who get mocked by the heroes, beaten in the Batman Cold Open, and are done with so the real plot by Doctor Doom or Magneto can begin. The people who exist to provide a fight scene to show off the heroes and who never seem to win even for the hero to rally back. Even if they should due to power set or past ability to stand up to much more powerful heroes.

I was thinking of this when I was re-reading the original Runaways run and watched the Wrecking Crew (Thor villains) lose to the Runaways.

That was just....wow.

edited 11th Apr '18 11:58:51 AM by CharlesPhipps

Author of The Supervillainy Saga, Cthulhu Armageddon, The United States of Monsters, and Lucifer's Star.
Sigilbreaker26 Serial Procrastinator
Serial Procrastinator
Apr 11th 2018 at 4:33:39 AM

Would Killer Croc be one? I generally see him being treated as a joke a whole lot.

"And when the last law was down and the Devil turned round on you, where would you hide, the laws all being flat?"
CharlesPhipps Author from Ashland, Ky Relationship Status: Lovey-Dovey
Author
Apr 11th 2018 at 4:41:12 AM

Basically, anyone who should win more than they do but get taken down.

Spiderman has a lot of villains like this.

Rhino, Shocker, Trapster, and so on.

He also has a couple that recognized their status as Jobbers and tried to change it. Jason Macendal was Jack-O-Lantern and realizing he was already a crappy D-list Green Goblin rip-off, stole the Hobgoblin identity for years.

And Mac Gargan became Venom simply because he was sick of being treated as a joke as the Scorpion.

Electro is kind of a middle example of this because he loses a lot but was still a recognizably famous Spdierman villain.

Author of The Supervillainy Saga, Cthulhu Armageddon, The United States of Monsters, and Lucifer's Star.
GraymanofBelka The Senate from Coruscant Relationship Status: Seeking boyfriend-free girl
The Senate
Apr 11th 2018 at 9:50:55 AM

If video game portrayals are allowed I'd say Mysterio and the Leader

It honestly feels like half of Spider-Man's rogues gallery are jobbers

edited 11th Apr '18 9:52:09 AM by GraymanofBelka

Did you ever hear the tragedy of Darth Plagueis the Wise?
Luminosity ahuhuhuhuhu from the mother of all drills Relationship Status: Lovey-Dovey
ahuhuhuhuhu
Apr 11th 2018 at 10:19:26 AM

They are.

It's especially weird when they're jobbers who really shouldn't be jobbers. Electro's powers should make him a huge threat, for instance.

BigK1337 Comedic Super Troper from Detroit Relationship Status: Hoping Senpai notices me
Comedic Super Troper
Apr 11th 2018 at 11:27:06 AM

Yeah a lot of Spider-Man villains suffer Badass Decay after their intial appearance, which ended up making them enhancement talent for many super heroes. Shocker is indeed the worst example as in his debut he was intially a legitimate threat who can fuck up Spider-Man. Look at him now. He is the Barry Horwitz of Marvel villains.

Might as well list some guys who are definite jobbers.

Marvel

  • Shocker: Nuff said
  • Wrecking Crew: Also nuff said
  • Trapster: For that matter any incarnation of the Frightful Four (sans Sandman and Medusa) are pretty much jobbers to the Fantastic Four
  • Rhino: Especially after he became a Rogue gallery transplant for the Hulk.
  • Boomerang: And he originally started out as a recurring villain for the Hulk. Notice a pattern here?
  • Leader: Who just so happen to create jobber villains the Hulk will face. Holy shit! Hulk is the Hulk Hogan of the Marvel Universe . . . except not a cunt.
  • Batroc the Leaper: When working independently. He is actually pretty damn competant villain when employed by Bigger Bads and actually give heroes (namely Captain America) a hard time. But when he works alone he is pretty damn useless. But hey at least he’s not . . .
  • The Serpent Society: Now there’s a stable of jobbers who always get their ass whooped by Captain America.
  • Justin Hammer: Well more specifically his whole empire of super criminals he created. He’s pretty much Marvel’s equivalent to Bobby Hennan . . . except not a wonderful and funny person who doesn’t deserve his fate.sad
  • Crimson Cowl: Like her dad she also have a stable of jobbers in the form of her Masters of Evil. Actually, to be fair, the Masters of Evil was always just jobbers coming together to get an advantage over the heroes who whooped their asses in the past. The success failure ratio is usually 50-50 as sometimes they are legitimately dangerous but other times they’re just the villain of the week.
  • Toad: . . . Yeah I got no explanation for this. His whole chaacter is just lackey.
  • Whirlwind: Hell the EMH cartoon lampshades how much of a non-threat the guy really is.
  • MODOK and A.I.M.: In the silver age they were a legitimate threat but by the modern age they are pretty much the evil science group who always get unceremoniously taken down and not as intimidating as their Nazi counterpart Hydra (who if their Nazi subtext was taken away would of also be treated as joke like AIM).

DC (oh god, there’s going to be alot)

  • Intergang: Pretty much a criminal group for Superman to fight that can put up some kind of challenge (but in the end won’t as they are merely a very low level section to the bigger picture of Apokalyps).
  • The Rogue: Even though I like the team, I have to say all of them are basically jobbers to the Flash when it comes to their capabilities in battling him. Really have to give that Rebirth story featuring the group props for having them being self aware of their jobber status and have them out smart Flash rather than fight him with their heist.
  • Cheetah: . . . Well this is sad, seeing how she is supposed to be Wonder Woman’s key villain.
  • Penguin: I don’t know, it seems like in a lot of Batman stories Penguin is there to be a random crime boss that Batman would alway take down. Though interestingly he does have more interesting and sympathetic stories later on where he does attempt at reforming himself or serve as an informant for Bats after realizing his own losing streak.
  • Any Earth based villain for Green Lantern: Tattoo Man, Hector Hammond, (maybe) Sonar and Doctor Polaris to me are all jobbers to GL.
  • Doctor Light: Nuff said.
  • Despero: Especially when he became swole and wants revenge of the JLA. He really fallen from being a Frieza like conqueror into just some no name brute that is there to be beaten by the new JLA team.
  • Solomon Grundy: Yyyyyeah, this one is debatable. On one hand the guy is beaten by a lot of super heroes and a lot of his stories end with him dead only to come back again in another story where the heroes beat him. On the other hand, he is still a powerful and dangerous villain whose strength can match even Superman. If I put him on the list, might as well add Amazo.
  • Many, many costumes villains and metahumans: I got lazy so I have this point to fill up the slots for DC jobbers.

Y’know, the better question here is what heroes from both universes are jobbers?

"Who needs sanity when you have unlimited power!" Now in (Very Active) Tumblr Form
GraymanofBelka The Senate from Coruscant Relationship Status: Seeking boyfriend-free girl
The Senate
Apr 11th 2018 at 11:41:14 AM

the Titans and green Lanterns tend to suffer major casualties

Batman also has a lot of jobbers: condiment king, carpenter, killer moth, catman, killer croc , cluemaster , firefly , ventriloquist, KG Beast, Copperhead, Kite Man, maybe Man Bat, (after the introduction of the Man Bat Commandos in Batman and Son he's kind of a degraded boss), and Carmine Falcons come to mind

edited 11th Apr '18 11:49:18 AM by GraymanofBelka

Did you ever hear the tragedy of Darth Plagueis the Wise?
CharlesPhipps Author from Ashland, Ky Relationship Status: Lovey-Dovey
Author
Apr 11th 2018 at 12:11:22 PM

I love the Hulk Hogan and Bobby Heenan references.

Some thoughts:

Marvel

  • Hydra used to be the ultimate jobbers because the joke were they had Offscreen Villain Dark Matter. They got some of their Villain Decay reversed when the Winter Soldier happened and they suddenly became capable of infiltrating SHIELD, an ancient conspiracy, and now, sadly, took over the United States and destroyed Las Vegas.

  • AIM has recently been bought out of by Robert Dacosta and now is a heroic organization but the joke is that all of the employees are still evil, they're just being paid by the good guys now. I'm not sure what I think about that plot development. Cut Lex Luthor a Check but they're still a bunch of science-Nazis.

  • Gwenpool had a lot of fun with the fact she confused Jobber status out of universe with in-universe. Batroc the Leaper, for example, is a guy who constantly loses to Captain America but then he points out that he's a normal guy who regularly fights a superhuman for fun. M.O.D.O.C. also casually disabuses Gwen of the fact he's a Memetic Loser by incinerating her friend.

  • Squirrel Girl is fun because she took Spiderman Rogue, the Plunderer, and made him her archenemy. Also, Kraven the Hunter gets treated as the world's greatest hunter (which he is) and INSANE but mentions he's one of the "three guys who has killed Spiderman."

  • Stiltman and Boomerang, I think are villains who people realized were inherently stupid for the opponents they fight.

  • Wolverine is the Worf Effect version in reverse, of course.

  • I think Titannia has never beaten She-Hulk in 40 years.

  • Ulik the Troll is the Monster Heel version of this trope as he literally is the prototype for Kalibak in the Fourth World and Dumb Muscle that people have stopped putting up against Thor to pound on every week.

DC Comics

I think DC does a better job of rehabilitating its jobbers than Marvel.

  • Cheetah has recently gotten some benefits from getting an upgrade to being Diana's Evil Former Friend.

  • Lex Luthor I think is a famous way to show the reverse of Villain Decay as becoming the Kingpin-EXPY and Corrupt Corporate Executive allowed him to get over 50 years of being the generic evil mad scientist who spent most of his time in jail.

  • I'd argue Penguin isn't the case because he tends to rise to the top of being the mob in Gotham City whenever they don't have someone new in charge.

  • Suicide Squad also made Captain Boomerang's entire thing being that he's a Dirty Coward with a stupid gimmick but AWESOME because he's aware of that and The Cynic.

Actual jobbers?

  • The Royal Flush Gang as mentioned.

  • Kalibak gets no respect (see Ulik above) and exists solely for Orion or Superman to punch while Darkseid disrespects him.

  • The Riddler really is the Batman's Rogue who gets the least respect these days. He's not one of the genuinely psychotically evil ones so he gets treated as a much much lesser threat.

edited 11th Apr '18 12:18:59 PM by CharlesPhipps

Author of The Supervillainy Saga, Cthulhu Armageddon, The United States of Monsters, and Lucifer's Star.
BigK1337 Comedic Super Troper from Detroit Relationship Status: Hoping Senpai notices me
Comedic Super Troper
Apr 11th 2018 at 12:34:36 PM

[up] Thanks for mentioning the ones I forgot like fucking Stilitsman, a lot of Silver Age Daredevil villains could qualify as jobbers (sans Purple Man and The Owl).

Anyway, yeah the Royal Flush Gang I agree with. I would say Kalibak is debatable but than again in all of his appearances he just gets his ass kick by whatever hero he faced; hell he was the Galactic Powers cartoon equivalent of Bebop & Rocksteady.

And Riddler . . . well I would argue that its Badass Decay rather than actually being a jobber. Especially with the recent story arc War of Jokes & Riddles where he actually played a serious antagonist role along with the Joker. Though in a lot of other mediums he seems to fluctuate between serious threat and cannon fodder.

"Who needs sanity when you have unlimited power!" Now in (Very Active) Tumblr Form
Sigilbreaker26 Serial Procrastinator
Serial Procrastinator
Apr 11th 2018 at 2:12:31 PM

The problem with the Riddler is two-fold - he's not a serious physical threat (unless he's pumped up on Venom like he was once or is undergoing Adaptional Badass a la the Telltale games). So he has to be a mental threat. But as a mental threat he's so self-undermining and compared to the other Batman villains who've deduced his identity like Bane and Ra's Al Ghul he's not even as smart as them (let alone as physically intimidating) while having a lot more personality drawbacks.

So Riddler's basically redundant unless you actually want to have a riddle based story. No wonder they made him go legit as a detective once, it seems the only way to get interesting stuff out of him.

"And when the last law was down and the Devil turned round on you, where would you hide, the laws all being flat?"
Apr 11th 2018 at 4:59:23 PM

Probably villains from way back when concepts were ridiculous like Kite Man.

CharlesPhipps Author from Ashland, Ky Relationship Status: Lovey-Dovey
Author
Apr 11th 2018 at 5:06:50 PM

I love how in the New 52, they just randomly had Kite Man show up and steal shit in like 3 panels then fly away.

Often saying, "Kite man, hell yeah."

Author of The Supervillainy Saga, Cthulhu Armageddon, The United States of Monsters, and Lucifer's Star.
Apr 11th 2018 at 5:09:33 PM

Isn't that a thing in Tom King's Batman?

edited 11th Apr '18 5:14:38 PM by ParaChomp

CharlesPhipps Author from Ashland, Ky Relationship Status: Lovey-Dovey
Author
Apr 11th 2018 at 5:11:08 PM

I saw it happen in a couple of other stories too.

Author of The Supervillainy Saga, Cthulhu Armageddon, The United States of Monsters, and Lucifer's Star.
Apr 11th 2018 at 5:15:56 PM

A tad off-topic, I just rewatched Spectacular Spider-Man recently and I find it made what many of us would consider Jobbers actually threatening. Goes to show you how a limited roster isn't always a bad thing as opposed to having an endless array of characters.

CharlesPhipps Author from Ashland, Ky Relationship Status: Lovey-Dovey
Author
Apr 11th 2018 at 5:20:14 PM

The SUPERIOR FOES OF SPIDERMAN is a book "about" jobbing Spiderman villains and is awesome for it.

Author of The Supervillainy Saga, Cthulhu Armageddon, The United States of Monsters, and Lucifer's Star.
Apr 11th 2018 at 5:21:19 PM

I might need to check that out...

CharlesPhipps Author from Ashland, Ky Relationship Status: Lovey-Dovey
Author
Apr 11th 2018 at 5:25:23 PM

I love the central premise they claim they're the Sinister Six and yet none of them are people who the actual Sinister Six (themselves jobbers) would give the time of day. Also, their habit of dealing with Spiderman is running away.

Author of The Supervillainy Saga, Cthulhu Armageddon, The United States of Monsters, and Lucifer's Star.
Apr 11th 2018 at 5:55:51 PM

Spiderman's veritable avalanche of D-list tryhards and pathetic, animal themed bozos reached memetic status more than a decade ago. [1]

And yes, that was an officially printed card with Spiderman head in hand in the illustration, the flavor text being "Oh, c'mon, guys-you're grown men!"

edited 11th Apr '18 5:56:18 PM by ViperMagnum357

GraymanofBelka The Senate from Coruscant Relationship Status: Seeking boyfriend-free girl
The Senate
Apr 11th 2018 at 6:36:04 PM

"Don't forget Big wheel you can't have a Spiderman story without Big Wheel"

Videogamedunkey, 2017

edited 11th Apr '18 6:36:41 PM by GraymanofBelka

Did you ever hear the tragedy of Darth Plagueis the Wise?
BigK1337 Comedic Super Troper from Detroit Relationship Status: Hoping Senpai notices me
Comedic Super Troper
Apr 11th 2018 at 7:13:51 PM

@Para Chomp

What like Shocker? Remember my comment about how his intial debut he was threatening? Same thing applies! I mean look at Electro in the show. At the start he comes off as a powerful foe to deal with with his electricity power, but by season two he is pretty much an overglorified Bebop/Rocksteady villain with his incompetency in the show while working for Doctor Octopus. Same can be said for Rhino; though his Bebop,Sandman, manage to shed away his incompetant weekly baddie status by the fifth episode of season two.

As for Shocker in the show, well he didn’t show much sign of decay to become a jobber in the show.

edited 11th Apr '18 7:14:34 PM by BigK1337

"Who needs sanity when you have unlimited power!" Now in (Very Active) Tumblr Form
Apr 11th 2018 at 8:59:45 PM

[up] How true, a lot of villains become jobbers after their first outing. Speaking of Shocker, Ultimate Shocker was a jobber from day one. Always trumped by Spidey except his final appearance.

Apr 11th 2018 at 11:57:50 PM

Does the Living Tribunal count? I mean he's supposedly the most powerful being in existence next to the One Above All, yet he gets his ass handed to him by the Beyonders.

Apr 12th 2018 at 3:28:57 AM

Marvel

  • Just about any telepath. Telepathy is one of the most broken power sets in fiction, so writers need to come up with all sorts of contrivances for why it doesn't work. Just look at how many X-Men characters have some kind of immunity to telepathy for one reason or another.

  • Wonder Man. An energy being with superhuman strength, speed and durability and energy projection. Given he's sort of a pacifist this makes some sense.

  • Thor. When he's with the Avengers expect him to be one of the first to go down and go down hard.

  • Ben Grimm. Remember when he was considered a legitimate rival for the Hulk? Instead of a jobber which is what he is?

  • Galactus and his Heralds. It is rare for me to argue that a character should have been killed off after their initial story. But considering the numerous indignities Galactus and his pals were put through after their first arc, I can't help but feel death would be so much better for them.

  • She-Hulk. Aside from that time she fought the Champion of the Universe, I can't think of a single instance where Jen was even close to being able to match her cousin.

  • Vision. If you want to see how much a writer subscribes to What Measure Is a Non-Human?, look how often they have the robot member of the crew get ripped apart.

DC

  • The Green Lantern Corps. Forget super speed, super strength or heat vision. The guy whose power allows him to make anything he wants is the real tension killer.

  • The Martian Manhunter. Telepathy, telekinesis (sometimes), shapeshifting, density manipulation, invisibility (again sometimes). As the Black Lantern Martian said, "I'm as powerful as Superman. Why does everyone FORGET that?" .

  • The Titans. With how many members have been killed off this franchise might as well be a teen horror comic.

  • The Justice League International. Basically when you take the hidden badass out of Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass, you get the JLI crew as they've been handled ever since they got beaten by Doomsday in Death of Superman.

  • The entire Wonder Woman cast. ALL OF THEM. Whether it Diana, Donna and Cassie having their strength, fighting ability or intelligence downplayed even in their own books, the frequency of the Amazons getting slaughtered by enemies that I'm surprised we don't have a separate trope name for that or Diana's villains getting punked out in other books. Highlights include Bruce beating Diana by kicking her in the stomach, Cheetah being beaten by Catwoman and Bruce beating Circe with a deus ex machina spell from Zatanna that nullifies Circe's magic. They can't even decide on if Diana is bullet proof or not.

And last but not least

  • The New Gods. Oh my, the New Gods. Once on a completely different level from the DC pantheon now they might as well all be populated by Kalibaks. You want an idea of just how low the New Gods have gotten? James Robinson's Wonder Woman has the Female Furies being defeated and captured not by Wonder Woman (who would still need Big Barda's help), not by the Amazons, not by the Olympains or any of Earth's deities, not by guest starring superheroes. No, by Steve Trevor and the Oddfellows. With no super powers or advanced technology on hand, a team that included a weirdo who likes bombs and a barely functioning alcoholic took down Darkseid elite female asskickers. Bravo DC, you did what no one ever succeeded in doing. You killed the New Gods. Their dignity at least.

edited 12th Apr '18 4:00:51 AM by windleopard

Forenperser Foreign Troper from Germany
Foreign Troper
Apr 12th 2018 at 5:53:45 AM

Well, as for the persons who have a so called jobber aura (aka making people WAY above their paygrade consitently forget about their powers), Batman and Captain America come to mind.


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