10 Marvel Characters Who Need To Retire | CBR – CBR – Comic Book Resources

Whether they were iconic in the past or never seemed to break through and make a name for themselves, these characters are outdated and should retire.
The key to Marvel Comics is a roster of classic characters dating back decades. That includes the likes of Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Spider-Man, and Wolverine. Though there are other heroes that made their name during the early days of comics and they are all iconic in their own ways, not all of them stood the test of time. Some of them had to be retired over the years.
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In some cases, they’ve long since passed the point of being relevant. And there are other cases where they really never were. Regardless of the reason, it might just be time for them to hang up their cape and retire.
Hulk has a lot of secondary characters who get caught up in his path- and not all of them were winners. A key one has long been Doc Samson, a superpowered therapist who was also impacted by gamma radiation. He then used his powers and training to try to help Hulk deal with his own mental health issues.
But as is often the case with a character like Samson, Marvel has changed him a few times to keep him interesting and keep readers engaged. Some of these attempts have been more successful than others. The bigger problem is that his character has been watered down to the point he has no meaning anymore.
There is a strong argument to be made that The Sentry might be the most powerful being on Earth. His levels are off most of the charts. And his various mental health issues have often meant that his control over those abilities is dubious at absolute best, which can lead to some fascinating and relatable dynamics.
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The story of Sentry being a forgotten hero as well as being his own worst enemy was an interesting arc, to say the least. At the same time, his actual powers make him come across as a knockoff Superman. Once he was a full part of Marvel and out in the open, he suddenly became a lot less compelling.
Over the course of his career, the Mutant speedster known as Quicksilver has been a hero and a villain. Beyond that, he’s also been a member of several prominent teams like the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, X-Factor, and various iterations of the Avengers.
In reality, his sister Scarlet Witch is a much more engaging character. Quicksilver is a speedster but he has nowhere near the power levels that someone like the Flash does. His arrogant attitude has become more and more annoying over the years, to the point that it’s just better when he isn’t around.
The story of Thanos the Mad Titan has long been tied to Eros, his brother and constant enemy throughout his villainous career. A frequent member of the Avengers under the name Starfox, he has done his best to aid the heroes of Earth against Thanos.
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Over time, his power set became problematic. He has the ability to manipulate people’s emotions to his advantage, something he used on women all too often back in the day. While Starfox is currently dead, comic book characters rarely stay that way. In his case, it might be time to maintain the status quo.
There have been a number of characters who have become the Ghost Rider over the years. It’s hard to imagine that any of them enjoyed the transition from flesh and blood human into a flaming demonic skeleton. But that’s part of the gig.
Dan Ketch was the Ghost Rider of the 1990s. Once that era was in the past, he went through a lot of changes in attempts to make him appealing, again. They have pretty much all fallen flat on their faces and gotten increasingly ridiculous.
As long as there has been an X-Men team in Marvel Comics, Cyclops has been associated with it in some fashion. Even if he was part of an adjacent team like X-Factor, he was still a part of the X-Men on one level or another.
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The irony is that he’s easily one of the most boring characters in comic books. And attempts to make him interesting often just serve to make him even less likable. It might be time for him to move on and retire with whoever he’s dating at this point.
Of all the teenage sidekicks in Marvel Comics, few have been as prolific as Rick Jones. The man has been associated with the likes of Captain America, the Hulk, Captain Marvel, and Rom. On top of that, he’s had his own powers on more than a few occasions.
Even in comics, no one human could plausibly go through the range of adventures he has been on and still be alive. The absurdity of his life is almost too much to take in at this point. It’s time that he hung up his adventuring pants and just stayed out of the way for a while.
There are a lot of masters of various martial arts in comic books. And Iron Fist has been a prominent one in Marvel Comics for several periods in the company’s history. He has been part of a few truly great stories and arcs.
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That being said, Iron Fist has become an increasingly dated character over the last few years. A big part of what made him appealing was his partnership with Luke Cage. Even that isn’t enough to make him interesting anymore.
There is a place of respect among Marvel’s heroes for the founding members of the Avengers. Thor, Ant-Man, The Wasp, Iron Man, and the Hulk came together to deal with the threat of Loki. From there, an iconic team was born.
Over the years, Hank Pym has changed superhero identities with a startling frequency. And no amount of goodwill ever undo all the bad he has done in his life. He has walked away a few times over the years. It’s time he made it permanent.
Many, many years ago, a man named Charles Xavier opened a school for young Mutants. It was meant to be a place where they could be trained with their powers and be safe. Then, he turned them into a paramilitary team he used to fight his personal wars.
It has been revealed in recent years that Professor X has used his formidable mental abilities to manipulate people into doing what he wanted them to. There’s a real chance that he’s a bigger villain in the overall story of the X-Men than Magneto ever was.
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Ian Goodwillie is a freelance writer based out of Saskatoon, SK, Canada. He has a BA in English Literature from the University of Saskatchewan and completed the Writing Program at Vancouver Film School. More importantly, Ian is also a wrestling fan, comic book reader, video game player, and photographer. He loves to write and writes about what he loves. Ian’s also an unrepentant, unapologetic Cougar Town fan, a show he will defend until the day he dies. Follow him on Twitter at @ThePrairieGeek.


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