5 Marvel Characters Who Got Really Cool While You Weren’t Paying Attention

Marvel is great, but they aren’t perfect. They have had a lot of ridiculous characters, from Paste-Pot Pete to Whizzer. Here are five of their most uncool heroes that have managed to turn it around while you were off reading about Captain America and Wolverine.

5. Silver Surfer

Silver Surfer
Source: Marvel Unlimited. Annihilation: Silver Surfer #4. Art by Renato Arlem & June Chung. © MARVEL 2006

Okay, Silver Surfer has been cool for a while. Actually, some of his first appearances were really cool. The problem with old Chrome Dome is that he’s just so damn inconsistent. Introduced as the herald of the “Devourer of Worlds” Galactus, Norrin Radd was an alien from Zenn-La who sacrificed his own humanity to save his planet from being Galactus’ next meal. Decked out with impenetrable silver skin and the Power Cosmic, he traveled the galaxy, warning citizens of their planet’s imminent destruction.

Sometimes comics have him put the “rad” in Norrin Radd, playing up the fact that he rides a surfboard and making him the goofiest stoner surfer since Jeff Spicoli. Tip: You can almost always tell by the font they write “Silver Surfer” in.

However, when comics play him as a disconnected sentinel either serving his master Galactus or trying to find out what life truly means, he is truly a fascinating God-like character who, even if we can’t relate to, we can sympathize with. Plus, he can reshape your molecules or punch you across an entire galaxy!

Check out: Silver Surfer (Vol. 5), Annihilation: Silver Surfer, and Silver Surfer: In Thy Name.

4. Dazzler

Dazzler
Source: Marvel Unlimited. A-Force #7. Art by Ben Caldwell, Scott Hanna & Ian Herring. © MARVEL 2016

The X-Man Dazzler was created with the intention of being a cross-promotion artist/comic opportunity between a record label and Marvel Comics, but the record label dropped out before an actress could be cast as the “real” Alison Blaire.

Dazzler had a rather popular comics throughout the 1980’s, but – Dare I utter the words? – she was never cool. She was a Madonna-esque singer and roller disco star who had the mutant ability of converting sound into light and energy, saving her road crew a lot of money on light shows for her concerts and boring fans who wanted exciting action and cool powers.

She was more-or-less rebooted in a 2010 one-shot and has been a mainstay of the Marvel Universe since. Now as a member of the all-female A-Force, her powers haven’t changed aside from how she uses them, and her character has been otherwise retooled with a new punk aesthetic. She even kicks ass alongside an alternate reality version of herself who wields the power of Thor.

Check out: Dazzler (Vol. 2), X-Treme X-Men (Vol. 2) and A-Force (Vol. 2).

 

3. Squirrel Girl

Squirrel Girl
Source: Marvel Unlimited. The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #2. Art by Erica Henderson & Rico Renzi. © MARVEL 2015

Doreen Green is the unique one on this list, in that she hasn’t really changed much since her character’s inception – she just leaned hard into her inherent silliness and made herself a legitimately popular mainstream hero instead of a tongue-in-cheek joke among fans.

Squirrel Girl (and her current sidekick Tippy-Toe the Squirrel) has always been ridiculous and likely always will be, joining the joke team Great Lakes Avengers and then quitting because her sheer power levels were holding the team back from growing. Having beaten Doctor Doom, Fin Fang Foom, Galactus, Thanos, and more with the power of squirrels, Squirrel Girl is possibly the strongest hero in the Marvel Universe.

Now, with her own goofy solo series, Squirrel Girl is ridiculous and charming, and not afraid to completely avoid the idea of taking itself seriously. Think of her like an adorable  and relatable Deadpool. There’s a reason she’s got a TV series coming up!

Check out: Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, Deadpool: Too Soon?,  and U.S.Avengers.

 

2. Nova

Nova
Source: Marvel Unlimited. Nova #25. Art by Kevin Sharpe, Jeffrey Huet, Nelson Pereira & Bruno Hang. © MARVEL 2009

If you don’t know me, Nova is my favorite solo superhero. This is entirely because of his re-imagining as a cosmic badass by the icons Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning.

Richard Rider was introduced as a reluctant teen hero to capitalize off the fame of Spider-Man, and had a series of forgettable adventures before joining the New Warriors.

During the 2006 cosmic event Annihilation, Nova finds himself the only surviving member of the Nova Corps, the intergalactic police tasked with stopping the Annihilation War. Imbued with the full Nova Force and his trusty living-computer sidekick Worldmind, Nova wins the war by tearing Annihilus inside out and then travels from planet to planet, stopping planet-level threats himself.

Check out: Annihilation: Nova, Nova (Vol. 4), and Thanos Imperative.

 

1. Jubilee

Jubilee
Source: Marvel Unlimited. X-Men #1. Art by Olivier Coipel, Mark Morales, & Laura Martin. © MARVEL 2013

Dazzler wasn’t the only 80’s member of the X-Men who was the seemingly permanent butt of jokes for X-Men fans everywhere. Enter Jubilation Lee, the goofy firework-generating X-Man primarily known for her extremely dated outfit and her appearance in the 90’s X-Men animated series.

After being de-powered alongside thousands of other mutants by Scarlet Witch in House of M, Jubilee lost what she believed was her purpose in life. The bitter ex-mutant commissioned Night Thrasher of the New Warriors to build her a powered super-suit and trained New Mutants as Wondra. One day the son of Dracula, Xarus, offered her the chance to have superpowers without a special suit.

Arrested by the X-Men after biting Wolverine, Jubilee has spent her days since as a vampire. She is currently being rehabilitated on the team while they search for a cure for her vampirism.

Check out: Wolverine and Jubilee, X-23 (Vol. 3) and X-Men (Vol. 4).

What do you think? Agree with the list? Any shockingly glaring omissions in heroes or their recommended comics? Let us know!

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Author: Jesse "The Clairvoyant" Rolufs

Film star. Chemical engineer. Dancer. Comedian. I am none of these things. What I am, however, is a huge geek hailing from the frigid wastes of western Canada. I couldn’t even tell you when it started - I’m told the first words out of my mouth were “I swing my +2 DEX war axe and attack the dragon.” My name is Jesse (also known as “The Clairvoyant”) and I am a big nerd when it comes to video games, board games, movies, anime, TV, RPGs - and I am possibly the one of the world leading experts on comic books, the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Joss Whedon. You can find me on twitter as @JesseRolufs. Don’t be afraid to check out my informative Joss Whedon-themed podcast @whedoncast, and my hilarious bargain-bin-movie-bashing podcast @BlindBuy!

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