Special Sub-Topic: What's My Motivation?
|They were going to remake my movie! And put some other guy in the lead role! That's why I became a bad guy. Unless it was that I was turned into a shape-shifting amorphous monster after taking a dip in a pool of radioactive protoplasm I found while treasure-hunting. I never can remember which. Who am I?|
Clayface. The name Clayface has been used by at least four different Batman villains, each of whom has a different origin story and powers. The first Clayface, Basil Karlo, took on the identity of the horror movie character he'd once played in order to stop a new actor from taking over his role. ("Detective Comics", 1940)
|I was corrupted by the powers given to me by a mighty wizard. I served as a champion of my people for a while, but then decided I should be in charge. For my troubles, I was exiled to the farthest star, and flying all the way back to Earth has made me pretty cranky. Or, perhaps, I might have been tempted by the wizard's evil daughter into becoming a bad guy, after which I spent a couple of millennia cooling my heels as a mummy. Who am I?|
Black Adam. Black Adam is a principal villain in the stories of Captain Marvel and the Marvel family. He initially appeared as a villain in 1945, but was a something of a one-hit wonder at the time. He was revived in the 1970s as a recurring feature in the "Shazam!" comics.
|I hate my rival hero! Sometimes I hate him because he's the only one in the world I can't bribe or buy off, and sometimes because I'd like to date his girl, but mostly I hate him because when he was a teenager, he blew up my secret lab and made me lose my hair! Who am I?|
Lex Luthor. Lex was originally designed as a redhead, but in 1941, an error in printing showed him as completely bald. The loss of his hair became a part of his supervillain motivations. Since then, attempts have been made to give Luthor slightly more complex and/or believable motivations.
|I'm a mutant, and either I'm the daughter of a noted underworld boss, or I'm a street-level car thief. In one version of my origin story, I tried to free my lover from a situation he had no desire to be free of, leading to his suicide and my villainy. In another, I was run over by a truck after a fight with my friend, and I blamed her forever, even after I was put back together again. Who am I?|
Lady Deathstrike. The original Lady Deathstrike story pits her against Wolverine - a fitting match since she also has an adamantium-enhanced skeleton and extending claws. The second storyline, from "Ultimate X-Men", pits her primarily against Storm.
|In my many lives as villain, hero, anti-hero and love interest, I've been motivated by the thrill of the heist, by reacting to violence against me, my sister, or a street prostitute, and by a fanatical devotion to animal welfare. Who am I?|
Catwoman. All that doesn't count the Halle Berry movie "Catwoman", in which Catwoman is given mystical cat-powers by the Egyptian goddess Bastet.
|I had a very traumatic childhood, that's for certain! It might have been on a ship, where I was repeatedly sexually abused and the well-known hero who would become my enemy didn't come to help me. It might have been in the Arkham Asylum, where the doctors didn't understand that I was infinitely more comfortable in the water than in the terrible beds, and where I saw my later nemesis on television. Who am I?|
Black Manta. Black Manta, a longtime foe of Aquaman, has also been used in experiments to create humans who can breathe water, been turned into a human/manta hybrid, and had parts of his face bitten off by King Shark. It's no fun to be Black Manta.
|In the 1980s, I was an African-American soldier who was manipulated by Lex Luthor into thinking Superman was responsible for the Vietnam War, where my brother lost all his limbs. In the 1990s, I was a white supremacist who turned to villain-hood to answer for crimes I imagined had been committed against me by African-Americans. Both versions of my character have used the same technology, a device that teleports weapons to me. Who am I?|
Bloodsport. Later, the two Bloodsports would fight in Stryker's Island prison. Robert DuBois, the original Bloodsport, is killed in the battle, and Alex Trent, the later edition, is burned alive by his Aryan Brotherhood teammates for showing weakness in the matter of DuBois.
|I got my superpowers from betrayal: either my lover and partner in thievery tried to poison me to keep me quiet about our heist, or my lover and professor injected me with toxins as a twisted experiment. Either way, I was pretty annoyed once I recovered, and found that I was resistant to all poisons and drugs. I decided to avenge myself, and the earth, against men and their depredations. Who am I?|
Poison Ivy. Poison Ivy was created to fill a villainess-shaped gap in Batman's enemies list in 1966, after Catwoman had begun to shift into the anti-hero/love interest role. She was outfitted with a set of powers and a nifty green costume, but didn't get an origin story until much later. Her current back-story didn't appear in comics until 1995's "Shadow of the Bat" annual.
|According to one of my creators, I was originally meant to be a supernatural entity discovered by a movie crew, but by the time I made it to the page, I was a young man locked in my dysfunctional father's house. As a child I nervously imagined an evil entity was lurking. Later, when I suffered an unfortunate lab accident, I took on the identity of that monster. Who am I?|
Green Goblin. Green Goblin was developed by Steve Ditko, with input from Stan Lee, as a foe for Spider-Man. According to a 2002 interview with Ditko in "Starlog", Lee initially imagined the Green Goblin as a lurking ancient evil, but Ditko drew him as a human tormented by the idea of a lurking evil instead. The Green Goblin appeared in comics for some time before being unmasked as industrialist Norman Osborn in an issue written by Lee and drawn by John Romita, Sr.
|I've got a split personality! The first villain to bear my name was a Russian and a foe of "Captain America, Commie Smasher" back in 1954, when all a US comics reader needed for a villain's story was that he was a communist. My more recent incarnation is driven by a sense of inferiority - my mother said I wasn't smart enough to learn to do the job I wanted, so I took a more menial job instead. On this job, a shocking accident gave me superpowers. Who am I?|
Electro. Marvel's Electro is a foe of Spider-Man, and got his powers from a lightning strike that hit electrical lines he was working on. All this could have been avoided, if his mother hadn't discouraged him from pursuing a safer career in electrical engineering.
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