10 Weirdest Matchups From Marvel's Acts Of Vengeance Event | CBR – CBR – Comic Book Resources

Marvel’s Acts of Vengeance event featured a few strange matchups as villains took on heroes that they had never faced before, with predictable results.
Marvel kicked off the ’90s with a crossover event that ran through a number of titles that all featured the Acts of Vengeance banner, though not every issue was directly related to the event. Acts of Vengeance saw a group of powerful villains gather together in order to take on heroes that they didn’t usually fight in an attempt to surprise teams like the Avengers and Fantastic Four.
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While some of the matchups that occurred during Acts of Vengeance actually managed to challenge the heroes with new threats they had never faced before, there were just as many odd battles that not only failed to do any damage to the heroes but left some fans scratching their heads. Today we’ll highlight a few of the weirdest matchups from Marvel’s Acts of Vengeance event.
The street-level heroes known as Cloak and Dagger hadn’t been operating in the Marvel universe for very long when the Acts of Vengeance event started. They had yet to make a name for themselves beyond news reports labeling them as dangerous mutants. This led to their invitation by The Jester to join his newly formed Alliance of Evil to take part in an attack on the Avengers.
While they joined villains like Hydro-Man, Fenris, Rock, and a Hulk robot, they only did so to stop the group from hurting innocent people. When the attack on the Avengers started, they revealed their true intentions and helped get the civilians out of danger before returning to help stop the short-lived Assembly of Evil.
While Doctor Doom wasn’t fully on board with Loki’s plane to bring the villains together during Acts of Vengeance, he did send a Doombot to orchestrate a number of encounters that tied the various tie-in issues together. Doom also rebuilt Ultron by combining the previous versions of the robotic villain into one, including the humanity-loving Ultron-12 who took charge.
However, the other Ultrons all competed for control and left the villain mentally unstable when he encountered Daredevil and Inhumans Gorgon and Karnak. Ultron made quick work of the heroes, though the voices in his mind caused him to nearly rip off his head. Daredevil was able to batter Ultron’s head with a big stick, decapitating the robot in one of his strangest appearances.
The youthful superteam of siblings known as the Power Pack had been oddly involved in a few crossovers over the years like the “Mutant Massacre” and Inferno, so it wasn’t that surprising to see them during the Acts of Vengeance event as well. However, what was really strange was that Doctor Doom had instructed the mutant pyrokinetic Typhoid Mary to go undercover.
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She used her mild-mannered Mary personality to become a teacher at a school for blind children to befriend the team, steal their Kymellian technology for Doom, and then kill the Powers. She mentally manipulated the children before attacking them and their father, though she revealed her goal the whole time was to toy with Doom during their follow-up “therapy” debriefing.
The Protector of the Universe had only recently been recruited by the Avengers when Quasar was called in to help clean up the destruction of Avengers Island that kicked off Acts of Vengeance, and he started off well taking on a cosmically-powered Absorbing Man.
However, in the next issue, Quasar quickly captured Venom before getting involved in a fight with Klaw and the Living Laser that ended up on the moon, where the Red Ghost was laying in wait. A number of villains were packed into one issue for the event that even featured the Watcher, though it was still a fairly forgettable issue.
A number of tie-ins to the Acts of Vengeance event were only loosely connected, and Doctor Strange: Sorcerer Supreme spent most of the first issue of the tie-in dealing with the return of his vampirized kid brother Victor. However, the demonically-possessed Hobgoblin was still eager to prove his new powers against Doctor Strange, though he wasn’t much of a threat.
Strange cast an enchantment that drained Hobgoblin’s powers and made him think his face had been restored to normal, causing him to flee. Strange’s following matchup with the Enchantress was a much better fit for the event until she sent Akron the Thunderer after him. Thankfully Clea was there to take care of Akron and put an end to Strange’s participation in the Acts of Vengeance.
Even Canada’s superteam Alpha Flight wasn’t safe from the Acts of Vengeance, as they faced off against a team of American villains who had been called in by their enemy Llan the Sorceror. Spider-Man’s usual villain Scorpion headed to Canada but was soon joined by villains like Nekra, the Serpent Society’s Asp, and The Owl, as they each crossed the border individually.
This was one of the weirdest combinations of villains and was not the Alpha Flight’s usual cup of tea, which was definitely true to the event. However, the involvement of the Sorcerer and the distraction of Gamma Flight made the villains feel forced into the ongoing storyline.
While the actual matchup between Wolverine and Tiger Shark during Acts of Vengeance isn’t that weird, given both characters have a similar rage and animalistic fighting style, the circumstances of their encounter were quite strange.
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Wolverine was heading to the island of Tierra Verde in search of the villain Roughhouse when he interrupted Tiger Shark’s planned attack on a new hero named La Bandera. Kingpin had sent Tiger Shark to deal with Bandera’s interruptions to his drug shipments from the island nation, making the ensuing brutal battle between the two characters a coincidence.
The West Coast Avengers played a fairly big role during Acts of Vengeance and faced off with respectable enemies like the U-Foes before teaming up with the regular Avengers to take the fight to the organizers of the villainous attack. However, they also faced off with one of the Fantastic Four’s first villains in an underwhelming bout.
Mole Man and his underground monsters like Giganto and the Deviant named Tricephalous were led to believe they were attacked by the West Coast Avengers. Giant monsters will forever be the Fantastic Four’s bread and butter, but the Avengers made quick work of them before Wonder Man was able to convince Mole Man that he had been manipulated and he called off the attack.
While Acts of Vengeance was advertised as an event that focused on heroes like the Avengers and Fantastic Four, Spider-Man had a few titles that tied into the event. This meant that he faced off with the most villains in the Acts of Vengeance event, and some of them were powerhouses that would have usually been above his paygrade.
Thankfully Spider-Man was granted the cosmic Uni-Power to become Captain Universe, which gave him incredible new abilities that he used to take on foes like Graviton, Titania, Goliath, Dragon Man, Brothers Grimm, Magneto, Hulk, and a new Tri-Sentinel that was put together by Loki.
When Doctor Doom was approached by the Prime Movers behind the Acts of Vengeance event like Loki, Magneto, Red Skull, Kingpin, The Wizard, and the Mandarin, he agreed to work alongside them. However, he felt that no one but him could successfully defeat the Fantastic Four, and he treated the whole event as a joke.
He used his Aggression Enhancer to draw a number of C-list supervillains to attack the Fantastic Four, though they mostly tripped over themselves and proved to be little to no danger to the FF. Even when the device set congress against the FF, Reed Richards was able to talk them down and disarm Doom’s deadly invention to put an end to the weak attempt at an attack.
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Entertainment reporter, writer, and all-around geek, Scoot Allan has written for print and online media sources like Geek Magazine, GeekExchange, GrizzlyBomb, WhatCulture, RoguePlanet.tv and the Urban 30 before joining CBR, ScreenRant, GameRant and The Gamer as a staff writer. He enjoys salad but prefers french fries.

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