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CSBG Archive

You Decide ’09 – Who Is the Top Non-Osborn Spider-Man Villain?

You know the bit – each day in October I’ll give you folks a poll question. Each poll will last four days. The results will be posted every Tuesday leading up to (and ending with) Election Day on the first Tuesday in November. Here is the master list of all questions asked so far!



Brian, have you missed The Scorpion off this list or have I missed something and he has been ret conned as Osborn

While a lot of these villains likely are there just as window dressing for a likely Dr. Octopus victory (WHERE everyone ends up ranking is what interests me most), I couldn’t come up with a case for Scorpion even being an option on the list. MAYBE as Venom, but then I figured, hey, just pick Venom in that case (by the way, I believe Gargan actually WAS retconned as related to Osborn at one point).

It really came down to Rhino or Scorpion for the last spot, and while yeah, neither one is a REAL challenger, I dig Rhino better as a villain.

I agree that it’s probably the Doc with JJJ as the possible darkhorse.

I voted for Ock, incidently, just because I think that, on the rare occassions when he’s drawn really right, he has one of the best visuals in all of comicdom.

The original Hobgoblin from the Stern/Romita issues had the potential to be the greatest Spidey villain INCLUDING Osborns. Pity they screwed it up.

I voted Doc Ock, but I’ve always had a soft spot for Rhino, despite what people say about him.

Dr. Octopus has this pretty much locked up. He embodies everything that makes Spidey’s gallery of villains both great and unique: semi-realistic abilities, science-based origins, and PATHOS most of all.

@Joe: Have you read the Milligan Rhino story in Tangled Web? If not, check it out (and for that matter, buy the whole rest of the series). It’s good stuff.

It’s not Venom. If you vote for Venom, you have bad taste.

Hmm, actually, the Jackal might be Spider-Man’s greatest foe if we account for the health of the property.

and then the Spot.

Yeah, Doctor Octopus wins this one easy. One of my favourite Marvel villains, and he pretty much WAS Spider-Man’s arch enemy – both before Green Goblin killed Gwen Stacy, and for the decades that Osborn was dead. It kinda makes me angry that, since Osborn’s resurrection, it’s like the writers have gone out of their way to make Doc Ock just look utterly crap to try and reaffirm Osborn’s status as the REAL top dog in Spidey’s rogues’ gallery.

Heck, I’d vote for Doc Ock even if Osborn were on the list. He’s crazy, but not gibbering like an idiot crazy, and as evidenced both in the past and recently, he really doesn’t want to hurt any normal people. He has a certain pathos about him that is sadly lacking in most villains both of the comic book and non-comic book varieties. And as more than one Spidey writer has hinted over the years, he is the kind of character that Peter could very easily have turned into without the guidance of Ben and May.

And on the movie front, with the exception of JJJ, who I would view as an idiot rather than a villain, he’s by far the best realized of Spidey’s antagonists in any of the films to date.

JJJ may hate Spidey, but he has his own honour at the same time, as evidenced by his refusal to name Parker as Spidey’s photographer when threatened.

I too voted for Otto.

The Scorpion is a serious ommision from the list though – surely more deserving than Carnage or Morlun?

No Shocker? *tear rolls down cheek like Native American looking at littering*

Screw it, going with Electro. Dude’s really badass, very much look forward to the Gauntlet story by Mark Waid.

JJJ is not a villain.

And the Scorpion is not included, while C-listers like the Chameleon and the Jackal are? Please!

I really don´t see JJJ as a villan. One of the higher ADVERSARIES to Spiderman, yes I do agree, but not a villain.

i’ve voted for Doc Ock because truthfully he is the greatest Spidey villain, but my favourite has always been the Lizard. something about him has always appealed. Also very big fan of Molten Man but I’ll concede he’s nowhere near the top echelon of SPidey foes

Ooohhh… So many good choices… Comes down to Hobgoblin, Doc Ock, or Venom, really. JJJ is an antagonist, but he isn’t a villain.

I can’t decide!

Ock. And it was Sandman who was retconned as related to Osborn (it was the hair).

You should have said past Osborn and Doc Ock.

I’d like to do a write in vote for joe quesada as Spidey’s greatest villain

I’m not sure I would have put JJJ on the list, but he got my vote.

Kingpin is by far the best villain on the list, but it’s hard to think of him as a Spidey villain anymore.

Whatever happened to The Rhino?

It’s gotta be Ock, hands down, for all of the reasons cited above.

Also – count me in on those who don’t think JJJ should be listed as an enemy. He’s a fabulous character and a great foil, but Spidey has never had to take him down. Other than his irrational hate of spider-man, he’s a model citizen.

And hey! What’s a spideyphile gotta do to get a little love for the Kanagroo around here? Or the Gibbon?

Actually, there was a fairly good bit in one of the Deadpool magazines recently (Suicide Kings, I think?) where Deadpool was scoring some legitimate points on Spidey by making fun of some of the more ridiculous members of Spidey’s rogues gallery (Kangaroo and Gibbon included). Brian should keep that in mind as a future poll (most ridiculous spidey villains). Count an early vote from me for the Hypno Hustler.

hard to pick but had to go with the Chameleon mostly for spider man has to think when he is around since he can be any one not to mention the latest story line had the Chameleon posing as spider man a villian who has spider man have to look over his shoulder

Doc Ock is the top villian for Spidey, probably even with the Goblins, it’s just the fact that no one has found a good way to utilize him since, like, the 70’s.
On a personal note, though Doc Ock HAS to win this, my favorite Spidey villian is Sandman, who really should get more respect considering how dang powerful he is. Why is a cartoon the first show to explore his powers to the fullest?

Jameson. He’s been a pain in the rear for Spidey since his debut in ASM # 1. Most of the others here are either dead or inactive. Some are more like recurring thugs, but only Jameson has repeatedly used his clout to make things miserable for our hero, no matter how many times Parker saves his sorry a$$!

Doc Ock




“And it was Sandman who was retconned as related to Osborn (it was the hair).”

That was in Chapter One, I don’t think anyone took that book seriously.

I vote for Doc Ock. He’s always been my favorite Spider-Man villain. Well, except when I was 13, then I thought Carnage was awesome.

I voted for Doc Ock (and I would vote him over Norman as well), but I wouldn’t be shocked if JJJ or Venom was close to him.

I would have included “The thief who killed Uncle Ben” over the Rhino. He might have made the top four in this poll.

J. Jonah Jameson. Though Doc Ock has been a powerhouse from time to time, JJJ has been a prick since the word go.

I’m surprised there’s so much love for Ock. I’ve been reading comics for 25 years, and always thought he was pretty lame. Never read a really good, strong Doc Ock story in my life. He always seemed to be one of those villains that was thought of as epic or legendary more because of how long he’d been around than anything else.

There was an issue of spider-man posted in a CBR article (was it a year of cool comic book moments?) and it was Doc Ock just owning Spider-man, showing how scary a mind Ock is. If Norman Osborn was dead for good, I would want a threat for Spidey who is as calculating as he is dangerous.

Seeing as how Doc Ock needs no support from me, I’m going to go with Hobgoblin, whom I’m actually surprised is not being counted as part of the Osborn legacy. Even though there wasn’t an Osborn behind the mask, he embodied the spirit of Green Goblin and instantly assumed the role of arch-nemesis. Frankly, I liked him better than the Green version, as the latter’s lunacy was replaced by a cold, calculating evil, which is really the truest kind of evil. Loved all those Hobgoblin issues from the Stern and Defalco runs.

But I guess Ock has it locked up, especially after the best film adaptation of any comic book villain shot his cred through the roof! Plus nearly marrying Aunt May takes him to a whole other level.

And poor Kingpin probably won’t get any votes. Blast you and your poaching, Frank Miller!!

Morlun sucks.


October 19, 2009 at 7:29 am

I’m surprised there’s not more love for Kraven among the posters here. The dude went out with one of the greatest Spidey storylines of all time!

(And how could you not love that Deadpool intervenes in one of the great Silver Age Spidey/Kraven fights during Joe Kelly’s Deadpool #11?)

I would be amazed if anyone voted for Carnage or Morlun. But I’m sure there are people out there that grew up with them or something and dig them. They make my skin crawl, personally. I definitely would have replaced them with Scorpion and Shocker. Hell, I think Big Wheel and Ringer would have been better options.

The Ugly American

October 19, 2009 at 7:33 am

The Shocker is the best Spider-Man villain because his hand sign is so much like Spidey’s when he’s shooting webs.

I think that villainy goes farther than just giving Spider-man a hard time. I need a villain who Spider-man doesn’t consider to be a pushover.

Spidey does have the best line-up of villains in the marvel u, though, so it’s hard to say that some of these villains are below others.

Forget the Scorpion and the Shocker (though I do love Herman), how the heck is the burglar not an option?

@Ultimate Matt: Even though I voted for Doc Ock, I think he is one of the most misused villians out there, and I can see why you think there aren’t any strong Doc Ock stories out there. I have to respectfully disagree, however. His first few Stan Lee / Ditko appearances were very strong. Doc Ock was part of the greatest stroy arcs ever as the Master Planner. Also, he founded the Sinister Six, IIRC. And in later years he had some good stories here and there. My personal favorite is the Doc Ock / Owl gang war that ran through Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider Man #72-79, especially when Black Cat gets caught in the crossfire and is nearly killed. I also thought he was used well by Miller and O’Neil in ASM Annual #15 (which, admittedly, is more of a Punisher story, but still pretty awesome nonetheless).

Plus, I just think Doc Ock is one of the most visually interesting of Spidey’s foe, and very much Parker’s superior in cunning and brainpower, which is often neglected and dismissed by writers who see him as a campy fool instead. I particularly disliked it when Doc Ock had a pathelogical fear of Spider-Man in the mid-80s. Just dumb.

Glad to see some love for the Shocker, I actually like him. Mcfarlane’s Venom was awesome, now though, could never get my vote (this applies to Carnage also). Kingpin could have but, as I assume would be agreed upon by many, better in DD. So even though his character was shat upon by Bendis, I’m gonna go with my man Kraven, with Mysterio and Chameleon close behind.

Doc Ock is pretty well a no-brainer here.

Since Shocker was omitted, I went with Electro.

You gotta be kidding me… you exclude the Scorpion and leave Carnage AND Morlun there?!?!?
Seriously, Morlun sucks wet donkey balls!

Doctor Octopus is head-and-shoulders above everyone else there. The big question would be “who’s Spidey’s 3rd top villain”? (my 3rd would be the Lizard, btw)

Jameson isn’t a villain, he’s an antagonist. There’s a difference IMO.

JJJ actually tried to kill Spidey a couple of times back in the early days, didn’t he? That thing on the cover up there wasn’t called The Spider-Catcher, you know.

I love the Shocker, but had to vote Doc Ock.

I’m going with Venom, no matter what anybody else says. Doc Ock SHOULD be the easy pick, but, as some have pointed out, his potential just seems to have been wasted over the years. Admittedly, the same is true of Venom, but initially the concept of him as a villain was great. The alien costume and Brock both had personal vendettas against Parker, they knew his secret identity (and were thus a threat to his loved ones), and, my personal fave, Spidey-sense didn’t work against him due to the symbiote having previously bonded with Peter. His first appearance was handled extremely well, and his look clearly establishes him as an iconic Spidey villain. However, he suffers from the same problem as Ock, no great stories. As far as stories go, Kraven would win that one hands-down. All that said, my personal fave is Lizard, since his powers are the result of science just like Spidey’s, and Peter always had the dilemma of knowing he couldn’t harm him too much because he was actually a friend. Just doesn’t show up often enough to get my vote, but that’s understandable seeing as how every Lizard story ends up being pretty much the same.

Doc Ock, hands down, Osborn or no.

I can’t believe that the Rocket Racer was left off the list. Razorback, too.

And don’t forget Slyde (or was it Glyde)? ? ? You know, that frictionless dude.

Tom from West Chester

October 19, 2009 at 8:33 am

It’s going to be Doc Ock, but I voted JJJ. While he’s not a villain in the tradiitonal sense of the term (except for the whole Spider-slayer bit and creating the Scorpion), he is Spider-man’s enemy, and he’s one that Spider-man can’t beat. He also showed up in all three movies, just like Norman.

I voted for Mysterio because his costume is a fishbowl and cape. Takes big brass ones to walk out the house like that.

There’s too many that could be just *perfect* IF not for some detail… Doc Ock is helpless without his arms (and even with them, I never understood how he could hit a guy who can dodge BULLETS), JJ Jameson is not a villain (no, the Spider-Slayer robot doesn’t count), Hobgoblin’s identity shuffle kept him from being as interesting as he could have been… Venom just likes to eat braaaaains… so I voted for The Jackal. Hey, the Clone Saga REALLY screwed up Peter’s life (and his sales! :P )

Of course, if Quesada had been in the poll, he’d probably won easily. ;)

I’m just surprised no one has suggested Joe Quesada. I’m very proud of all of you.

Most of Spider-man villains are either suited up, juiced up, or both, so most of them are nothing without their fill-in-the-blank.

I think that Ock could mastermind a plan that would ruin Spidey, and he wouldn’t even have to lift a tentacle.

I’m willing to check out some Doc Ock stories and get proven wrong – also, admittedly, my most overwhelming memory of the character is the Hulk taking him down with a flick of a finger in #396. So that doesn’t help the guy.

Doc Ock wins this even if Osborn was on the list.

It’s Doctor Octopus. It’s always been. I prefer the Vulture, but the answer here is Doc Ock.

Venom does not exist in the universe I hail from.

Apparently everyone forgot about that issue of Web of Spider-Man where JJJ throws Deb Whitman off a bridge.

I second JoeMac. One of the greatest Doctor Octopus storylines was in the 1980s, in “Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider Man.” He was portrayed as a deadly menace, so much so that Spider-Man bid farewell to his friends and loved ones before a duel battle with Octopus.

Stegron, the Dinosaur Man.

Then probably Doc Ock, I suppose.

I would take Morlun off this list for sure, and replace him with the Shocker, but I’d ALSO take the Kingpin off the list – ultimately, he’s a DD villain, despite first showing up in ASM – and replace him with the MOLTEN MAN, who’s proven himself on several occasions.

I voted for Mysterio because he has many times had Spiderman on the ropes because he masked his plans the best. Bu that’s my favorite of the bunch. Your question is not who our favorite is but who is his top villain and based on appearances that would be Doc Ock

Ulimate Matt-If I recall Hulk #193 had less to do with Doc Ock and more to do with a subliminal shot in the PAD/Larsen feud that was ongoing at the time.

I voted The Jackel

On a general note Spider-,Man ranks his top 30 foes in 1989 ASM annual and since and here are the top ten
10. JJJ
9. The Burgler
8. Venom
7. The Scorpion
6. The Vulture
5. Dr. Doom
4. Kingpin
3. Kraven
2. Doc. Ock
1. Goblins, both Green and Hob

Otto, without a doubt.

While I agree that Scorpion is not big enough a villain to be featured on the list, he still beats Rhino. However, he was more of a victim of JJJ’s obsession and therefore only when he came out of the Scorpion suit Gargan became a villain on his own, notably as the new Venom.

Ain’t it funny that most of Spidey’s major villains were created in the ’60s? There’s only one from the ’70s, two from the ’80s and one from each of the remaining decades. Shows you how deep is the crisis Spider-Man has been in for years (and now he’s even in a deeper mess). Morlun, I assume, is on the list just as a representative of the decade since there were no real villains created since JMS took over on the main title (I’ll let history judge whether the post-OMD new villains – like Menace and Mr. Negative – will have any affects on the mythology of Spider-Man).

Okay, first, yes, the machines are called Spider-Slayers, but Jameson was trying to CAPTURE Spidey, not kill him. Big diff.

Second, Razorback was never a villain. Gibbon’s reformed. So has Molten Man.

Sadly, they backtracked on Sandman’s reformation, which I thought was a wonderful storyline when it happened, gradually, over several titles over several years. I miss the reformed Sandman, who was a terrific flawed hero.

Morlun stinks. Carnage is slaughter pron. Chamelion can’t even throw a punch. Daredevil stole Kingpin.

You might as well toss in the likes of Hammerhead (you HAVE to be a badass to survive a nuclear explosion in the face), the Lobo Brothers (man I got sick of those guys when I was a kid), and the killer mimes.

I went with the obvious, but if the poll is actually as titled on the poll (outside of Norman Osborn) rather than as the post title (non-Osborn), the Harry Osborn Green Goblin at least belongs on the list about Morlun or Carnage. (Morlun? Seriously? I’d find Mr. Negative more credible…)

Somtimes I can’t get over the fact that Otto looks like Moe Howard so I don’t take him as seriously. But you really only connect him with Spidey. Some early Spider-Man villains ended up being more identifed with other titles… Sandman became part of the Frightful Four. Kingpin was positioned to be a major Spider-Man villain but was used to shore up the weaker Daredevil rogue’s gallery. I think Doc Ock was given a big boost since he made the best translation to the films IMO. Heck, I think he probably was better done than Magneto.

I voted for Venom. I love that guy. And Michael up at the top, you’re a bag o’ poo.

I really wanted to give this one to the Kingpin, but he really has shifted his attention elsewhere. So yeah, gotta be Otto.

Most of Spider-man villains are either suited up, juiced up, or both, so most of them are nothing without their fill-in-the-blank.

This criticism doesn’t really make sense. Doesn’t this criticism apply to everyone’s rogue’s gallery? Actually, being suited up, juiced up or both applies to all superheroes as well. Unless I’m not properly getting what you mean by suited up and juiced up.

The year is 1976. Flying high after the success of their Wizard of Oz co-production, Marvel and DC decide to take it up a notch, and tell a story in which their two most popular characters team up to fight an alliance of their arch enemies. For Superman, there’s no choice other than Lex Luthor.

For Spider-Man, it’s Doctor Octopus. End of discussion? Nope, but it shows you where their heads used to be.

I look at the list and have some real problems. Brock-Venom isn’t the same as Gargan-Venom, so which do I vote for.

Hobgoblin was great, but also so intricately tied to his creator’s mystery story, that the character derailed significantly, afterwards. When the whole thing was finally revealed, it was a side character who hadn’t been seen or mentioned in years. With Norman Osborn back, there’s very little place for him, since he never had any strong motivation for being a top tier villain. He didn’t even particularly hate Spider-Man and had no problem walking away from the role.

JJJ isn’t a villain and the Kingpin is now Daredevil’s #1 enemy. Heck, the thing that could have brought Fisk back into the Spidey camp was retconned away by OMD.

I think Scorpion is a more prominent foe than Morlun.

It was Sandman who was retconned into the Osborn family. Although that family connection seems to have since been discarded (it was one of the Chapter One retcons, none of which are in continuity any more).

The Rhino over The Scorpion?? I don’t even really think of the The Rhino being a Spidey villian as such.

Oh well, I’ll just have to pick someone else I guess:)

Doc Ock for sure. What’s a Morlun?

First off, I love seeing that Carnage cover. Not voting for him, but that was the comic book that got me into comics. The cover was just awesome to my little brain. Good times.

Second, I voted for Venom. I agree that Doc Ock is #2 to a lot of people, but I think more readers think of Venom nowadays when they hear Spider-Man than think Ock.

I don’t like how this poll excludes Osborn by automatically assuming he’s the greatest villain. He’s not even close. He was never that great, and nowadays he is WAY overused. (I can’t wait for this Dark Reign mess to end.)
I don’t understand why everyone is discounting the Kingpin. So what if he’s also Daredevil’s arch-enemy? He’s big enough for both of them. I’ve never understood this idea that each bad guy has to belong to one hero. That’s just stupid.
Throughout the ’80s, which is still the best period for Spider-Man, Wilson Fisk was always around. Even when he wasn’t a villain in a particular story, he’d be there laying the ground work for his next big plan. And he almost never came across as a joke, which makes him pretty much unique among major comic-book bad-guys.
To me, this just seems like it should be a total blow-out victory for Fisk. I don’t see how anyone could seriously consider anyone else, with the possible exception of Doc Ock.

And everyone else is right that Jameson shouldn’t count as a villain.

Did you not even consider including the Punisher on this list? I know people like to think of him just as a hero, but he’s been a great Spidey-antagonist for years.

And I know you probably felt you needed somebody relatively recent on the list, but Mister Negative would’ve been a MUCH better choice than Morlun. (Come on, he even got his own limited series recently. I can’t be the only one who thinks he’s great.) (And just in case Cloak & Dagger ever get any kind of series again, he would make a great bad guy for them, as well.)

My favourite would be Roger Stern’s Hobgoblin. His first Hobgoblin arc was how you introduce a new major villain. Unfortunately, late 80’s and 90’s were awful for poor Hobgoblin.

But since this poll is about the top villain, it is hard to argue against Doc Ock. Doc Ock from 60’s to gangwar against Owl, that is. After that he hasn’t been that great, even if he did effortlessly beat The Hulk once. Still, this is the guy who almost married Aunt May! Who can top that?

JJJ, of course. He DID marry Aunt May. To his own father, JJJ sr. And JJJ has been a constant thorn in Spideys side from the very beginning to this day.

So which one wins it? Two decades worth of great menace or constant, if mostly not life-threatening, antagonism. Both have strong cases. Umm..

Sorry, I can’t vote against Hobgoblin in this one.

I am little surprised by all the love of Doc Ock. Marvel presented him as the ultimate Spidey villain when both Osborns were dead, but I never bought it.

I voted for Jameson, because he is a villain Parker can’t hit and he terrorizes Spidey and Peter. I also could make a case for Kingpin, the Lizard (he is probably the non-Osborn who is closest to Peter), Venom, and the Jackal (for really derailing Spider-Man for so long).

I voted for JJJ, not because he is a real physical threat, but he attacks Spider-Man on every level.

And I’m sure if we did an issue-by-issue count we’d find that JJJ gets mentioned by Parker/Spidey as a pain, a villain, an issue in his life more then anyone else.

Think about it, every time he’s squared off with one of those other villains JJJ is in the background turning the city against him or cutting his pay or something.

Hobgoblin. No question. Here’s hoping they collect some of that stuff soon.

“The year is 1976. Flying high after the success of their Wizard of Oz co-production, Marvel and DC decide to take it up a notch, and tell a story in which their two most popular characters team up to fight an alliance of their arch enemies. For Superman, there’s no choice other than Lex Luthor. ”

See, you update this to 1995’s Spider-Man/Batman crossover, and “Lex Luthor” becomes “the Joker,” which makes sense. Unfortunately, Dock Ock is replaced with…Carnage.

Yeah, if you want to get technical, it really depends on the decade. The late 70s-80s really go heavy for Dr. Ock, what with Osborne dead. There was an (arguably) classic Hobgoblin story in there, but the ending really blows it. SInce I grew up reading mostly eighties back issues, The sudden, comparatively recent arrival of Osborne, and this insistance that he was and always had been Spidey’s greatest foe felt improbably and forced upon me by the writers, not developed organically.

Then, of course, there’s the the 90s, where it’s pretty indisputably Venom, no matter how one feels about the character.

I would never consider Morlun among the greatest Spidey foes, but the story that introduced Morlun is quite good. It’s classic Spidey versus unbeatable villain, where Spider-Man’s smarts and gritty are put to the test.

I know it’s too tied to the infamous idea of Spider-Man as a mystical hero, but it’s a great fight pencilled by John Romita, Jr.

But Morlun’s later appearance in “The Other” was totally gratuituous, unexplained, and ridiculous.

I am incensed by the exclusion of Fancy Dan.

Ult. Matt–I never read a Doc Ock story that made him seem intimidating at all until Daredevil #165, early in the Miller/Janson run. That’s by far the most effectively villainous I’ve ever seen him. It’s been included in a whole bunch of different trades; check it out!

I’ve got a soft spot for Kraven and Mysterio because of a couple of Marvel Tales issues I read til they fell apart. I was planning on voting for Ock, but screw it, I’ll vote with my heart. Kraven it is!

Hey, I’m fancy! Hope that makes you feel better, Buttler.

Whew! What a response to this. If anyone says shit about not reading Amazing Spider-man currently, I’ll be suspicious.

T., I was jusrt responding to someone who said that Dock Ock is nothing without his tech. I say that most villains lose their teeth without their gimmicks, but Ocks still got the crazy brain.

Yeah, most heroes and villains are augmented. ON the x-side and in the galactic section, those are people naturally born with powers. Still, I’m saying that Spidey has the best Rogues of the Marvel U. Look how much conversation he sparks!

It should be the Juggernaut.

…I’ve always been partial to Mysterio, personally.

I love venom for being just so vicious looking and recognizable.. But I gotta go with Doc Ock for overcoming his ridiculous getup to be a working villain who over time has actually become intimidating

Now realistically speaking, it’s probably going to go to Doc Ock or Venom, or at an outside bet, JJJ , much as I don’ care for Venom personally, he’s certainly an very popular foil for Spider-man.

I however am going to go for the Lizard. I always liked the whole Conners attempting regenerating his limb angle, and out of all Spider-mans animal themed villains, he’s the one thats kind of the most interesting mirror to Spider-mans own origin (although Morbius is similar) being the whole unintentional vs intentional DNA wrangling causing positive and negative results respectively.


” Most of Spider-man villains are either suited up, juiced up, or both, so most of them are nothing without their fill-in-the-blank.

This criticism doesn’t really make sense. Doesn’t this criticism apply to everyone’s rogue’s gallery? Actually, being suited up, juiced up or both applies to all superheroes as well. Unless I’m not properly getting what you mean by suited up and juiced up.”

You’re reading it out of context, T; this isn’t a “criticism” of Spidey’s rogue’s gallery at all.
He’s replying to an earlier comment which tried to disqualify Doc Ock as being “nothing without his arms.” He was replying to this with a “so what? You can say that about most of them” pretty much the same point you were making.

… and I see that he’s already clarified his point. Excuse me.

One of the best and more recent Doc Ock stories was in Peter Jenkins run on Peter Parker, Spiderman, where Doc totally outfoxes a new villain Fusion(?) and Spidey. It really showed of Doc Ock’s smarts.

You’re reading it out of context, T; this isn’t a “criticism” of Spidey’s rogue’s gallery at all.
He’s replying to an earlier comment which tried to disqualify Doc Ock as being “nothing without his arms.” He was replying to this with a “so what? You can say that about most of them” pretty much the same point you were making.

Oh I understand now. My bad Vichus.

What? No Man Mountain Marko?

No love for Hammerhead?

@ Dan Felty. The Spider Man story where Doc Ock gets the adamantium arms and goes ape ^%$* on everyone was pretty vicious. He single handily trashed Spidey, the Hulk, and some other heroes. I remember reading it and being really shocked at how bad ass Doc was in the story… granted I was 13.

Why isn’t Wil O’ The Wisp on here? Venom. And it’s not about bad taste, it’s about bad writers screwing up a perfectly good villain. First he was a good mirror image of spider man, then he was shoe-horned into an anti-hero (because it was the 90’s and everybody was doin it) and now he’s just a mindless hungry cannibal.

I’ll be honest. I voted for Venom. I’ve always loved him, Carnage, and some of the other symbiotes. Proud to say so. I do admit that Doc Ock is really high up though, maybe even moreso than Venom but I had to go with him.

Scorpion definitely should’ve been included and maybe even the Shocker. They’re equal to, if not greater, than Jackal and Morlun. I’m not sure about Jonah being a villain either, unless you count him doing the Spider Slayer robot stuff.

Seriously, Wil O’ The Wisp. Anybody? He’s like Spidey’s Molecule Man or Gravity in that if anybody actually thought about the powers they have and used them properly they’d be unstoppable. Plus his outfit rocked. Wil O’ The Wisp. Seriously.

Vincent Paul Bartilucci

October 19, 2009 at 5:05 pm

Doc Ock. Even if there were Osborns on the list. And Kraven’d be #2. Norman MIGHT make my top 5.

Let me echo DanLarkin’s comment – Morlun?

The only decent Spidey villains that were introduced post-Ditko are Kingpin and Rhino. Venom sux and his inclusion ruined Spider-man 3.

JJJ is a villain! Those Spider Slayers were financed by him and sent after Spidey. The Scorpion also. This should be used as a story to remove him from the mayors office. The Kingpin is a horrible villain for Spider-Man! Pete should have accidentally crushed his fat head in!
I think i need to vote for The Jackal! If I vote for Miles Warren does that also count for Carrion as well?

Also, i write in a vote for Tombstone! My most prized Spider-Man comics are Sassy Sal’s Spectaculars, so i’m partial to that era.

These people are right that Tombstone, Hammerhead, and Will-o-the-Wisp should be on the list. That’s one of the great things about Spider-Man– he has so many good villains. I also like the Answer, the Spot, and the White Rabbit. And the Molten Man.
I really liked Belladonna, but as far as I’m aware she only appeared in three issues back in the early ’80s. (But that’s how Roderick Kingsley was introduced. He really needs to come back.)

I forgot to mention the Black Fox. Has he been seen since #350? (I missed most of the ’90s, and the first half of this decade.)

Tombstone, Silvermane, Shocker, Will O’ The Wisp, Molten Man…these guys are all better than Morlun or JJJ. And If you’re going to have them, why not Spidey himself or Seward Trainer or Judas Traveller or Kaine or Mephisto or Deadpool?

Lacking the Stegron option, I voted JJJ.

And the implicit understanding that he SHOULD be portrayed as at least 51% villain.

Okay… so I must have a weird counter culture notion of best Spidey villains. My two favourites are the Rhino and the Sandman. Rhino played as a crazy drunken lout who just gives ‘er full throttle and bashes his head into the good guy, or Sandman a blue collar tough who can turn his body into a giant sand hammer and club a hero out, or in need just vanish into earth… those two guys are the lumpen proletariat of Spider-Man villains.

For the record it was Sandman for me. But credit to Brian for just including the Rhino. I hope he gets a vote or two.

I never could see JJJ as a villain in the post-1960s stories. You get past his anti-Spidey obsession and there is a noble and decent man inside him. The proof is that he usually does the right thing when Spider-Man isn’t involved to cloud his judgment. He is the crusading publisher that is unafraid of the Kingpin in Frank Miller’s classic Daredevil stories, and he refuses to get into the mutant hysteria fad in the Uncanny X-Men comics of the 1990s.

By the way, one of the few things I dislike in the current Spidey stories is that JJJ is seen as trying to gain Norman Osborn’s favour. I think it would be more in character if he considered Osborn as as bad as Spider-Man.

And overexposure or not, Dark Reign did one good thing to Norman Osborn (and the Scorpion-Venom too), it caused the character to be taken seriously by the rest of the Marvel Universe! There is this thing about Spidey’s rogue’s gallery: they were never respected by any other hero, particularly the big guns. Doctor Doom is big trouble, Loki too, the Red Skull, Magneto, even the Kingpin. But Doctor Octopus, Electro, et. al. were seen as lame thugs by the Avenger-level heroes.

I think it’s a good thing that Osborn is seen now as major villain by the rest of the MU. Makes Spider-Man more respectable by association.

I am with Comicbookreader on that one and voted for Kraven.

This was a hard vote. I understand how Doctor Octopus ranks waaay up there when ranking Spidey villains, but I had to go with Venom because of how he was originally envisioned to be. While Doc Ock is brilliant and definitely respectable, I had to go with Spidey’s antithesis, the Joker to his Batman if you may.

Dr. Octopus is the top notch non-Osborn villian, here’s why:

– Amount of history with the hero (one of his earliest foes)
– Iconic Encounters that are memorable (Aunt May engagement, unmasking teen Peter, ASM #500, just a FEW examples)
– Great look (It’s been copied at this point, but he was original)
– Just crazy enough without being too extra

Otherwise, many of Spidey’s classics have gotten better the past few years. ELECTRO is the best example, after MK Spidey from Millar and Bendis’ New Avengers pumped him up to powerhouse level. There’s plenty of electric characters; Electro should be the best.

Mysterio has been more of a threat as well, if not easy to follow. I love that weird fishbowl look.

Jackal did most damage in-continuity, but the character will never get the respect.

Always thought Shocker could be a bigger threat. His big comeback after BND was lacking, as most big villain combacks are.

I want Eddie Brock Venom back, and Mac to be a souped up Scorpion…he’s been souped up before and still sucked, but let’s hope he’s been learning during his time as Venom.

For the record, I said Octopus was *helpless* without his arms, not that he wasn’t *dangerous*. Heck, he’s just a fat nerd, I’ll bet that even *I* can beat the crap out of him without them! Of course, he would then probably come up with a diabolical plan of vengeance that would humiliate AND kill me, as he has done many times in the comics. :P Still, a top-notch Spider-Man villain really should be able to *fight* him by himself and not with a device (and again: Spidey can dodge bullets, but not metallic arms? Please.) Also, last time I looked Ock wasn’t bulletproof even with his arms on, so a dude with a gun could just kill him. He’s just not impressive enough to me.

Lobstah Johnston

October 19, 2009 at 7:08 pm

Sure JJJ counts as a villian. How many Spider-slayers did he employ? Those things were made to slay as in kill. That makes him an enemy, a threat and a not very nice man.

Mary Warner
October 19, 2009 at 5:30 pm

I forgot to mention the Black Fox. Has he been seen since #350? (I missed most of the ’90s, and the first half of this decade.)

He was a regular in the short-lived Irredeemable Ant-Man series a couple of years ago (by Kirkman and Hester).


Seconded on Shocker. He was my favorite SM bad guy as a kid.

I voted for the Rhino – ever since I was a kid he was my favorite. I don’t care if he almost didn’t make your list. He could destroy most on this list.

I would bet a lot of people love Sandman and Rhino. They just don’t rank as very many people’s favourites.
I think the Sandman is really great. He’s more powerful than he often gets credit for, and while he is a brutish thug, he still has more decency at his core than comic-book thugs are usually allowed to posess. I think I’ve actually read more stories with him as a good guy than a bad guy. (He was even a good guy in Peter David’s Friendly Neighbourhood series just before One More Day.) But even when he was good, he was still anti-social enough that you could easily see him sliding back to his old ways.
And I think Thomas Hayden Church did a great job with him in the movie. When I first heard he was playing the part I couldn’t picture it working at all, but he actually captured him really well. (Although I hate the way the movie tied him to the death of Ben. It lessened Peter’s guilt, which goes against everything the Spider-Man character has always stood for.)

You didn’t need the disclaimer. If Osborne was on this list I woudl still vote for JJJ.

It would have been Kingpin if DD hadn’t stolen him away.

Who (or what) the hell is Morlun?

TomerS said: “Ain’t it funny that most of Spidey’s major villains were created in the ’60s? There’s only one from the ’70s, two from the ’80s and one from each of the remaining decades. Shows you how deep is the crisis Spider-Man has been in for years (and now he’s even in a deeper mess).”

I agree that Spider-Man is in a bit of a mess, but I think it would be misleading to point at the fact that there has been a lack of great new villains… I mean, most great villains in both Marvel and DC were created in the 1960s or earlier. I’d guess more than 70% were. There are always a few here and there from the 70s and 80s, like Ra’s Al Ghul or Bullseye, but classic villains are hard to come by in more recent times… mostly, I believe, because major villains are, for the most part, able to stand the test of time, and therefore, by definition, a new villain is hard pressed to be considered a major villain right out of the gates.

Mac Gargan. If you’re tired of your Venom making empty campaign promises to eat brains, go with America’s favorite symbiotic nutjob!

I really liked Tombstone.

But, I gotta vote for Doc Octopus. If only for one thing that I didn’t notice mentioned.

When the villains tried to rebel against Doom in the first Secret Wars, although it was Kang that Doom executed to get their obedience, it was Ock who formulated the rebellion.

That made him the #2 villain in the MU for me when I was a kid.


Sijo: “Also, last time I looked Ock wasn’t bulletproof even with his arms on, so a dude with a gun could just kill him.”

“Dude with a gun could just kill him . . . ” Ah, how many villians could we say that about, with a few notable exceptions (Sandman comes to mind). That critique can apply to most super villians out there (our inestimable Mr. Osborn inlcuded). But, we’d rather watch our superheros engage in super-powered slobber-knockers, that’s why we’re comic book fans.

Look at the list again – other than Morlun, Sandman and maybe Rhino, you can pretty much off any of them with a bullet.

Yeah, I know Doc Ock will probably win, too. But, I had to go with Sandman. Mostly, because of his cool powers, but also because he’s a cool, scary villain and sympathetic at the same time. Let’s not talk about ‘Spiderman 3′ though.

Brian Cronin posted:
“While a lot of these villains likely are there just as window dressing for a likely Dr. Octopus victory (WHERE everyone ends up ranking is what interests me most), I couldn’t come up with a case for Scorpion even being an option on the list. MAYBE as Venom, but then I figured, hey, just pick Venom in that case (by the way, I believe Gargan actually WAS retconned as related to Osborn at one point).”

I can’t believe I’m going to bat for Gargan, but lest we forget, he was able to deduce that Peter Parker is Spider-man in Millar’s ‘Marvel Knights: Spider-man” run. So he should make the list for that.

I for one like what they’ve been doing with Gargan as Venom. I seem to remember an old Spectacular story where Scorpion was unable to remove his old green duds. Now he’s melded to the symbiote–poetic justice.

How about: the symbiote costume as a villain choice then?

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