Superheroes are often seen by fans as models of virtue, but like the gods of Greek myth, they have shown how truly imperfect they can be, countless times. For the most part, this implies that they fail in their mission, but sometimes it means that they fall into darkness.
The story of a hero turned bad is not a new trend in comics, but it always has the potential to generate some really great stories. However, with all that said, not all of the heel twists that DC and Marvel have done have been gold, in fact some have proven to be outright failures.
10 Great: Captain America (Secret Empire)
Controversial over its genesis, Captain America’s tenure as Hydra’s sleeper agent is a fascinating period to remember. Although fans had a knee-jerk reaction to the change from some of the more emotionally happy fans, Cap saying “Hail Hydra” and leading an evil take on America was mostly well written and great.
Steve Rogers’ villain career ranks low here because Marvel went cold and revealed that this Cap wasn’t the real McCoy. Even if Secret empire The ending is disappointing, the consequences of Steve’s time with Hydra are still in play to this day.
9 Failed: Wally West (Heroes In Crisis)
Two years was all it took for DC to ruin Wally West’s glorious comeback. If it wasn’t bad enough that the divisive event Heroes in crisis It started with Superman finding Wally’s corpse amongst a cornucopia of dead superheroes, but the twist that he was the killer turned fans off completely.
The twist was literally pointless and felt extremely petty on the creative end. Beginning with this story, the creators had to go to great lengths to redeem Wally after the controversial decision to turn him into a murderer did nothing but alienate people.
8 Great: Jason Todd (Under the Hood)
For a long time, Jason Todd’s legacy was completely reduced to a disguise in one case at The Batcave. All of that changed when the character reappeared in “Under The Hood,” making the former Robin the new main villain.
Jason’s debut as The Red Hood set the precedent for what would be his life thereafter, with his villainous tactics working both to terrorize the criminal element in Gotham and to unsettle his former mentor, Batman. Today, Jason flirts with more traditional heroism, but his debut as a villain worked on a grand scale.
7 Failed: Spider-Man (Superior Spider-Man)
Some watch Spider-Man’s body being taken by Doctor Octopus in the acclaimed story Superior Spider-Man like Spidey going bad. If that’s the case, then the turn was a total flop, as it was more of a story of Doc Ock seeing the light.
When a dying Otto Octavious swapped bodies with Spidey, he barely got a chance to do something really bad before Spidey gave Otto his memories. Otto later learned that with great power comes great responsibility and he became a good guy from that day on.
6 Cool: Iron Man (Axis)
Axis It wasn’t the first time that Iron Man broke down, but it was by far the most successful moment. Invested by Red Onslaught, Tony created a new version of Extremis with the intention of using it to attack people with disabilities.
Not only did Tony charge an incredible price for the app, his actions perpetuated a massive crime spree just to get the money to use it. The Iron Man villain’s career was fun for fans to read and probably made those in the Marvel Universe happy that he was on their side.
5 Failed: Cassandra Cain (one year later)
Many people would consider Cassandra Cain the best Batgirl, but her status afterInfinite Crisis rubbed a lot of fans the wrong way. Trained to be one of the greatest assassins at the expense of being able to speak, Cassandra Cain’s journey from assassin to heroine was one that fans grew fond of, making her fall from grace even more painful.
Now, the leader of the League of Assassins in the One year later Era, Cassandra not only murdered many people, but also joined the most sinister team of the Teen Titans of Deathstroke. This period in Cassandra’s life is as controversial as it is, thankfully, brief.
4 Great: Bucky Barnes (The Winter Soldier)
Bucky Barnes’ return to life echoes that of Jason Todd, which makes sense since his two resurrections took place around the same time, but the circumstances of his return are far more harrowing. The story of “The Winter Soldier” revealed that Captain America’s former partner had never died, but instead was brainwashed into the private assassin of the Soviet Union.
The twist was a pleasant surprise, as the shock of Bucky’s current state had a heartbreaking impact on an already mentally fragile Captain America. Although Bucky’s memories would soon be restored, “The Winter Soldier” changed him forever.
3 Failed: Jean Gray (The Dark Phoenix Saga)
Very similar Superior Spider-Man, “The Dark Phoenix Saga” is a phenomenal story with a villainous twist that fails. Longtime X-Men member Jean Gray, becoming The Dark Phoenix is one of the most iconic things the character has ever done, but at no point was he in control of his actions.
The worst things The Phoenix Force made Jean do were his actions and only his, Jean had nothing to do with the atrocities The Dark Phoenix is responsible for. Unfortunately, Jean never got a chance to prove her innocence, because she sacrificed herself to stop the conflict between The X-Men and The Shi’ar.
two Great: Superboy-Prime (Infinite Crisis)
Debuting as a saint in Crisis on Infinite Earths, fans became more interested in Superboy-Prime when Infinite Crisis made him a sinner. Enraged at having lost his reality in the next age Crisis, Superboy-Prime, an alternate version of Superman, made a ruckus that would affect reality.
During Superboy-Prime’s epic rampage, he delivered a hit that literally shook reality and would cause some very significant ripple effects. Changes made by Superboy-Prime include the resurrection of Jason Todd, who would later be reconfigured.
1 Failed: Captain Atom (countdown)
If a heel roll is forgettable, what was the point? That’s the question posed by Captain Atom becoming the villain Monarch in Countdown, the hated event that was written to lead to Final Crisis. Although Atom became Monarch failed, it is a failure with some history.
In the equally bad case, Armageddon 2001, the main villain Monarch was supposed to be a future version of Captain Atom, but when the ending was leaked to fans, it was revealed that Monarch was Hawk from Hawk and Dove. Countdown tried to remedy this mistake, it’s a shame nobody cared.
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