Bad to the bone: Cower in fear at these powerful Marvel villains
It’s a good year to be a Marvel fan. The Marvel Cinematic Universe officially expanded onto Disney Plus with WandaVision and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Those two shows received overwhelmingly positive reviews, and they are just the beginning for Marvel’s Phase 4. Throughout the rest of 2021, the studio will release four different films, and their 2022 schedule is already filling up.
Black Widow, coming to theaters in July, will be the first MCU movie to come out in over a year. It will be followed up in September by Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. The year will end on a high note with Eternals in November and Spider-Man: No Way Home in December.
Along with some new heroes, this next batch of Marvel movies will also introduce some of the best villains that the company has ever created. Here’s a look at some of the baddies who will be arriving on screen later this year.
Created by writer David Michelinie and beloved comic book artist George Pérez, Taskmaster first appeared in The Avengers issue #195. He has “photographic reflexes” which allow him to mimic & perfect any fighting style he sees. Since battling Earth’s mightiest heroes, Taskmaster has also squared off against Captain America, Spider-Man, and Ant-Man.
This year, Taskmaster will make an appearance in Black Widow. Amazingly, Marvel has been able to keep the identity of the actor playing Taskmaster in the upcoming film a complete secret. Fans won’t likely know the who, what, how, or why of the MCU’s version of Taskmaster until Black Widow gets released on July 9th.
In the Marvel comics, the Mandarin is a major villain for Iron Man. Back in 2013, Iron Man 3 introduced the Mandarin as the leader of a terrorist organization. The movie later revealed that the Mandarin was really actor Trevor Slattery pretending to be an imposing supervillain. Fans wanted to see the real version of the character brought to life, and Marvel is finally going to deliver just that.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings will unveil the “real” Mandarin. Wenwu, played by Tony Leung, is a character written specifically for the MCU, which makes him one of the newest Marvel villains. Wenwu is Shang-Chi’s father, but the hero has no idea his dad is secretly the Mandarin. We’ll see how that revelation plays out on September 3rd.
One of the most anticipated MCU movies of the year is Eternals. The film is directed by Chloé Zhao, who recently became the second woman in history to win the Academy Award for Best Director for her film Nomadland. Focusing on a group of immortal beings who’ve secretly lived on Earth for thousands of years, Eternals will introduce some much-needed diversity into the MCU’s roster of characters & actors.
The Eternals are locked in an endless war with the Deviants. Both races were created by the godlike Celestials, but the Deviants received horrific mutations that left them superpowered but monstrous. The Deviants use the powers granted by their various mutations to try to control the planet Earth and destroy their Celestial-created brethren. On November 5th, the two groups will go to war.
Doctor Otto Octavius
More commonly referred to as “Doc Ock”, Dr. Octavius is one of the greatest Marvel villains ever created. He is a mad scientist who, in an experiment gone wrong, fused four metal “arms” to his back. After the accident, Doc Ock turned to a life of crime and ran afoul of Spider-Man. The two have been duking it out ever since.
Doc Ock, portrayed by Alfred Molino, previously appeared in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 2. To the delight of fans everywhere, Marvel is bringing Molino back for Spider-Man: No Way Home. Molino’s casting spurred rumors that the film will focus on a “multiverse”, tying together all the various Spider-Man franchises. We’ll have to wait until July 2nd to know for sure.
It’s going to be an action-packed year for the MCU! Which Marvel villains are you most excited about seeing on the big screen? Let us know in the comments.