MCU: 10 Best Origin Stories, According To Reddit

With She-Hulk: Attorney at Law set for an Aug. 17 release, MCU fans are getting ready to learn more about the irradiated lawyer who's going to be defending the world's superheroes. While newcomers may not currently know much about the character, her origin is surely going to excite and enthrall.

But She-Hulk certainly won't be the first hero to have her origin told within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Many extraordinary characters have had their whole lives play out on screen, and their origins were specifically tailored to each character. Yet it's hard to deny that some MCU characters come to superheroics in more interesting ways than others

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Ant-Man

ant-man scott lang paul rudd age in the mcu

A thief turned superhero, Scott Land has one of the best origins in the franchise. "I love how small-stakes and human it is," says Redditor weirdoldhobo1978. "He's not an immature godling who almost started an interplanetary war, he wasn't making weapons of mass destruction, he's a smart guy who makes bad choices and has to make up for them."

Fans are introduced to Scott at his lowest point, and it helps to establish him as both a comedic hero and one trying to use heroism to improve himself. Ant-Man isn't exactly the most high-profile hero, so giving him humble beginnings helps to make that more believable than it would if he was a billionaire like Tony Stark or a god like Thor.

The Scarlet Witch

Elizabeth Olsen as the Scarlet Witch in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

Once nothing more than an orphaned test subject for Hydra, Wanda Maximoff's descent into becoming the Scarlet Witch is all the more believable thanks to her origin story. Having only ever had her brother at her side, his death made her loneliness all the more understandable.

Besides, the Scarlet Witch has lost so often in Marvel that it's understandable that she would struggle to cope with it all. "I think Wanda's is super relatable for certain people who have experienced trauma," says Reddit user Financial_Accident71. That relatability is part of what fans love so much about her. They can understand.

Kingpin

Kingpin on Daredevil image

Taught violence by his father before being forced to kill the man, Wilson Fisk was raised in brutality from an exceptionally young age. "I really believe Wilson Fisk’s storyline motivations is one of the most believable villain origin stories," says Reddit user jasonmbergman.

Kingpin is one of the most dangerous crime lords in Marvel Comics, and it shows in his every appearance. But it's not hard to understand, given his origin. Having killed his own father and then been separated from the mother he loved, he found nothing he could rely on but crime to get by.

Star-Lord

The Guardians tend to have backstories that are considerably less grounded than most Marvel humans do, and Star-Lord is certainly no exception. "Abducted and raised by alien space pirates, who turn out to be the wayward employees of his own alien father?" says a now-deleted Reddit user.

His origin helped him learn to be a vigilante by serving as a criminal and a smuggler, while it also put him in the presence of people who could teach him to fight — and who could show him the importance of family. It also explains why Star-Lord is a total himbo sometimes. Raised by Ravagers, he really had no chance to be anything else.

Tony Stark

Tony Star from Iron Man

The hero who started the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe, Tony Stark went from an arrogant billionaire to a man attacked by his own weapons, which taught him the importance of using them wildly. Tony "sees the reality of what his technology does to people and learns a little humility and about himself," says Redditor _jvc123.

It isn't easy to get audiences to empathize with a billionaire, but by having him learn about the mistakes he'd already made as a weapons manufacturer, they made him comprehensible and a beloved figure. Somehow, despite the concept being wholly unrelatable, his familial problems and struggle with his own behavior and society's perceptions of him make him comprehensible and even sympathetic.

Daisy Johnson

Daisy Johnson AKA Quake In Agents Of SHIELD

One of the most powerful members of the Inhumans, it initially looked like Daisy Johnson didn't have powers at all. "They gave us a backstory right under our noses, only revealing it all when the time was right is some great writing," says Redditor Marc_Quill.

The slow reveal of her powers and her nature as an Inhuman was as shocking to Daisy as it was to the fans. It helped explain why S.H.I.E.L.D. had an interest in her, and it also offered a great and ambiguous villain in Calvin Zabo, while giving the team some much-needed firepower.

Rocket Raccoon

Rocket Raccoon with Groot on his shoulder.

It isn't easy to make a talking raccoon into a figure that doesn't just belong in an animated kids' movie. It especially isn't easy to make an angry cursing raccoon with a gun into more than a sideshow feature in a freak show. But Rocket's tragic history as a lab experiment turned him into a viable character deserving of more than just laughs.

"Kinda makes all of the earth characters sound boring by comparison," says this Reddit user. It even makes him more compelling in scenes where he isn't brooding on his depressing past. After all, who wouldn't want to learn more about the experiments that made Rocket, or how he came to be a friend to a talking tree?

Daredevil

Daredevil standing with shadows over him in Bendis' run.

A boxer's son turned blind superhero, "Daredevil has like a seperate origin story for each of his facets (blindness/powers, reason he fights crime, how he knows how to fight, being a lawyer/befriending Foggy). One of which involves ninjas and a secret ninja war," says Redditor alex494.

His history helps explain how his Catholicism relates to his superheroism, and it also serves as an explanation for where an overwhelmed child learned to use fights and heroism to cope with the struggles of his life. It also offers him endless opportunities for storylines with the ninjas he learned beside and from. Besides, his relationship with his father is the heart of Daredevil.

Doctor Strange

Doctor Strange with his cloak.

Once a skilled doctor who suffered an accident that took away his skill with a knife, Doctor Strange was an arrogant braggart who quickly learned humility and magic and lost his lover in the process. It made him a legendary sorcerer, but it also helped to make Marvel's most powerful magical superhero into a relatable figure. After all, everyone has loved and lost, just like Strange did.

"I loved the way they first show his fall from a great surgeon to basically begging on the streets in Nepal and then his rise to become the Master of the Mystic Arts," says Reddit user Refqka. Without that origin, he would have been another boring hero with incomprehensible powers. Instead, he was a lovable figure with a good heart and understandable goals.

Captain America

There's no Marvel origin story better than Captain America's. "He is always and will always be that 5'2 (?) skinny guy from Brooklyn, just trying to stop bullies," says Redditor TransitRanger_327.

Steve Rogers wanted to serve to protect people from bullies, and that behavior continued all through his time as an Avenger. He never truly changed, and the nature of that scrawny kid remained the same through every movie and every appearance. As a man who only wanted to help people, Captain America continued helping across the world, the only way he could, and that origin explains each step he takes during Captain America: Civil War as he pushed against the corrupt government.

2022-08-14T15:03:58.000Z

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