Why Captain Marvel is the Worst Marvel Character Ever

What makes this hero the worst in Marvel history?

There is much debate surrounding who everyone’s favorite avenger is, but nobody seems to talk much about who the worst marvel character is. 

When choosing the criteria upon which one should evaluate these characters, the worst character is not defined by how “evil” they are. In other words, it’s not that kind of bad. The worst character is simply the character that gets under the audience’s skin the most, is the worst portrayed from the comics, and is generally just not fun to watch. According to an article written by Sean O’Connell for Cinema Blend, many claim Hawkeye, Falcon, The Hulk, or even Iron Man to be their least favorite characters, but the character who is really the worst, who outdoes all the rest in the terrible category, is Captain Marvel- specifically, as she is portrayed in the Marvel cinematic universe.

Now, there is a large fan base for Captain Marvel that calls themselves the “Carol Corps” after the character’s name, Carol Danvers. These fans see Captain Marvel as a feminist icon, Marvel’s Wonder Woman, and a symbol for progress. As a woman, I think that her being a female superhero is as far as her good traits go, and even then, her feminism feels artificial. Zoe Fanzo, writer for The Meridian, said it well, “Captain Marvel is saturated with the theme of female power, and while that is in no way an unwanted motif, the politics of the film overshadow its ability to tell a fully realized story.” The movie is full of scenes where she is being undermined by male antagonists, and she only achieves her full power when she finds out that her male mentor had been stifling her abilities the entire time. An example of one of these forced feminism ridden scenes is when a man cat-calls her and she steals his motorcycle. It was unnecessary and just detracted from the actual story. It feels like she is a shell of a character that is just being used as a prop for feminism in order to be easily marketable.

In addition, everything concerning Captain Marvel all the way back to the comics feels ambiguous and forgettable. Every hero’s story has aspects, other people, magical items, nemesis, etc., that all amounts to what can generally be called lore, and this is what intrigues most fans. For example, Spider-Man’s lore (as seen in the comics) would be something encompassing Aunt May, Uncle Ben, Oscorp, Doc Ock, The Daily Bugle, and so much more. Captain Marvel’s lore is just nonexistent. As Thomas Well said in an article for Medium, “When you think of Captain Marvel, what do you think of? She… used to be a pilot? She has Kree DNA, somehow. Did she used to have a romance with Marr-Vell, before that character died?” She does not have anything memorable or interesting that makes the audience truly feel like the story is real.

Similarly, her origin is not compelling or interesting in the slightest. The hallmarks of a great hero’s origin story are sacrifice or loss, an interesting way of receiving powers or abilities, and an emotional hook. For example, let’s look at Spider-Man, specifically the origin seen in the Tobey Maguire movies. It begins with lovable and relatable Peter Parker who lives with his aunt and uncle, then receives a bite from a radioactive spider, giving him powers. He then goes on to try to use these powers to earn money in a pro-wrestling tournament, which he wins, but the promoter of the tournament refuses to give him the money he earned. So, when an armed robbery is committed against the promoter, Peter lets him go out of anger and does not try to stop him. This same man only minutes later shoots Peter’s uncle in the street, and Peter vows to live by his uncle’s famous saying “With great power comes great responsibility.” His clean, memorable origin story gives him motive to be a hero, an interesting power set, and an emotional connection with the audience, not to mention the entire backstory of his parents, Oscorp, etc.. Captain Marvel is a different story. Her origin basically goes as follows: She was an Air Force pilot working for NASA and then somehow she accidentally got Kree DNA to obtain the most boring and overdone powers of flight, super strength, super durability, and energy beams. She did not sacrifice anything or even gain a reason to fight for good. Without a gripping origin story, Captain Marvel falls flat. 

All of these flaws might be able to be overlooked to some extent if the hero had a lovable personality. Unfortunately, she does not. Scowling everywhere she goes, Captain Marvel seems standoffish, entitled, ignorant, and bossy. She struts into any room and makes demands when she isn’t in charge and then leaves. She never seems to have the right priorities either. For example, in Avengers: Endgame, every other hero works hard and risks their lives to stop Thanos and then Captain Marvel, who has been absent the entire time, waltzes in giving the excuse that she was off helping other planets, then proceeds to tell everyone what they should do. If she is truly the most powerful superhero as she claims, why was she not at the source of the problem? Why would she be doing cleanup on other planets? She has many qualities that contribute to her being the worst Marvel character, and her personality doesn’t help fix any of them.