From Marvel and DC movie products to the huge amount of comics people have read over the years, mad scientists have played an integral role in some of the world’s biggest and best productions in this space. While the unspeakable acts they implement don’t make them the most charming of characters, they’re personalities many people love to hate.
Mad scientists have been prominently featured in a number of products and continue to be present today in a selection of smash-hit creations, be it in 2013 hit movies like Upstream Color or in popular titles that take gamers into the lab of a mad scientist, such as in Pragmatic Play’s The Wild Machine. These modern-day creations have been inspired by a number of mad scientists of old who helped pave the way for even more dastardly foes thanks to a series of iconic productions.
With the superhero genre offering up some of the most memorable villainous mad scientists ever, below is a brief look at some of the best of them, with some being seen in the comic books and movies we all know so well.
Kicking things off with perhaps one of the most famous doctors from the Marvel Universe, Doctor Doom is a mad scientist with a difference. Not only does he possess immense knowledge in all things science, but Doctor Victor Von Doom or Victor Van Damme also had a fascination with dark magic and combined the two to cause untold amounts of destruction. The child of a witch, Doctor Doom oozes evilness and is a horrible character many people grew to love.
A robotic personality people who adore the Superman franchise will be more than familiar with, Brainiac isn’t actually a scientist, but he’s making our list because he is a great villain who manages to carry out various pieces of scientific research in a number of Superman productions. While he doesn’t have a doctorate, his evident intelligence helped fuel some of the most dangerous moments in Superman history.
Doctor Arnim Zola
Originally seen in the Captain America comic books of the 1970s, Doctor Arnim Zola is a seemingly indestructible scientist who continually evaded capture after being recruited by the terrorist Nazi splinter group known as HYDRA. The Nazi scientist eventually succumbed to a fatal disease before living on through a mechanical body and continuing to cause notable pain to Captain America as the comics progressed. A villainous scientist of the highest order, Doctor Arnim Zola is a great character overall.
Another instantly recognizable face from the comic book category, Doctor Octopus is one of Marvel’s very best mad scientists due to the tentacles that he possesses. While his demise from being a respected nuclear physicist and robotist is a fairly sad story that ultimately fuelled his wicked ways, the fact that he was a formidable enemy for Spider-Man makes him hard to like. A mad scientist like no other, Doctor Otto Octavius has been thwarted by Spider-Man on numerous occasions but he still always manages to put up one hell of a fight due to the intelligence he has.
A horrible mad scientist that we definitely couldn’t leave off the list, Lex Luthor is another terrifying opponent who threatened the life of Spider-Man and the world as we know it. A clear genius that helped create things like a warsuit and various other dangerous weapons in an attempt to take down Spider-Man, Lex Luthor has helped make the Spider-Man franchise what it is today thanks to the immense battles he had with Peter Benjamin Parker on numerous occasions.