Super Father’s Day II: Top 5 Villain Makers
Which supervillain has or had the best father? When I asked this online, it proved to be much tougher than when I’d previous asked which superheroes had the greatest dads (“Super Father’s Day: Top 5 Hero Makers”).
Lex Luthor adores his infant daughter Lena, so much so that he has her mother drugged and locked up so he doesn’t have to share his child’s affections. “Everything I do,” he tells the infant, “I do for you.” He also trades her away to Brainiac 13 for technology from the future, one reason he ranks no higher on this list. To his (questionable) credit, he dreams of finding her some day and sharing his techno-kingdom with his heir. Sweet, right?
How Lena qualifies as a supervillain involves a convoluted time travel story, as happens so often in super-characters’ lives.
The mutant twins Wanda and Pietro, a.k.a. the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver, first appear in the comics as Magneto’s flunkies. They break away from him, become superheroes, and spend years searching for their roots only to discover that Magneto’s their father. In the days before Marvel storylines overused mutant parenthood revelations, this one seemed natural. Quicksilver always looked like Magneto, for one thing.
When 600-year-old eco-terrorist Ra’s al Ghul‘s daughter Talia falls in love with Batman, Ra’s deems the bat worthy as prospective son-in-low and as successor to run al Ghul’s international organization one day. So what if Talia killed her dad? She only did it once while brainwashed, and he got better.
Werner von Doom is a strong contender for the top spot. Young Victor von Doom‘s father died of exposure, giving his child the shirt off his own back to protect the boy. Werner tried to warn Victor not to follow a dark path in life, but death kept Daddy von Doom from finishing the sentence.
Additional candidates that various individuals suggested for supervillains who had the best fathers included the Riddler, Red Mist, Harry Osborn, James Gordon Jr., Richard Fisk, Frieza, Vegeta, J. Jonah Jameson, George Walker Bush, and all the Boys from Brazil. I’d love to hear more suggestions.
This whole topic also got me wondering: What counts a great dad for a supervillain? Is it the good guy whose kid goes bad despite outstanding fathering or the bad guy who successfully raises an heir to his villainy?