MCU movies are loved all across the globe for their prowess in visuals, comedy, story, and action. We have never seen a superhero film that can make you laugh and tensed at the same time. But MCU is not just limited to comedy. In fact, some of the wittiest and strongest heroes in the franchise have endured the most heartbreak. It’s their devastating experiences that have transformed them into selfless heroes who have nothing to lose. They might look hard and strong on the outside, but they are the biggest softies and hurt souls. It’s shocking how the light-hearted comic book genre hides such dark storylines underneath the comedy. Which Marvel character do you feel bad for the most? Here are the 10 most damaged MCU characters with a tragic past.
1. Peter Parker
Peter is merely a teenager who is expected to worry about their exams and love lives. But he has experienced more than a kid can take in. He has fought his girlfriend’s father, watched his mentor, a father-like figure die in front of his eyes, and been betrayed by Mysterio. How will this hopeful kid ever see the world in the same light?
2. Peter Quill
We always look up to Star-Lord for some comedy and to feel good but the character himself might need someone to talk to. He lost his mom when he was a young boy and got kidnapped from his home planet moments after his mom passed away by aliens. God knows if he ever got over this trauma because his life didn’t get better even after growing up. He looked for his father for years only to find out later that he was a villain who planted the tumor in his mother’s brain. After he finally found a father figure in Yondu, the latter sacrificed himself for Peter. Gamora, the only source of light in his life was also taken away by Thanos and thrown off the cliff.
When was the last time you saw Nebula smile? Who can blame her for her grumpy nature? She was a kid when Thanos destroyed her planet and took her with him. In spite of wanting it, she couldn’t find a sister in Gamora as Thanos made them fight each other and replaced a body part of the loser.
4. Dr. Strange
Doctor Strange is a dependable hero with his calm and wise persona. He may be powerful as the Sorcerer Supreme, but it’s his intelligence that gives him an edge over his enemies. No one can tell everything that he has suffered through the years. He trapped himself with Dormammu in a time loop only to be killed countless times. After that, he saw millions of possibilities in the Infinity War against Thanos where his people died millions of times. The art of meditation has given him the strength to face all of these hardships.
5. Bucky Barnes
Bucky was born to be a hero. He fought for his nation during World War II and always had Steve Rogers back during his bully days. Bucky was a good man who was meant to be a hero but he was abducted by the wrong men. He was subjected to dangerous and excruciating experiments that brainwashed his mind and enhanced his abilities. Bucky’s brain was coded and operated in such a way that he had to execute Hydra’s orders and kill innocents against his will. Deep down he was aware of what he was doing and felt pathetic about it but he had no control over his body.
6. Natasha Romanoff
We haven’t explored much into Black Widow’s past but one can tell that she has spent half her life repenting it. Her body was subjected to experiments while growing up which snatched her opportunity to ever become a mother. She was deprived of a normal childhood and trained to be a spy which forced her to take many innocent lives in the past. Natasha was never able to forgive herself in spite of every sacrifice she made as an Avenger. Her ultimate sacrifice in Avengers: Endgame to save mankind and bring back her loved ones made her the happiest. Spending your entire life in guilt is the worst punishment one has to live with.
Gamora was a little girl but not so young to understand the loss of her planet, home, and family. She was deprived of a normal childhood after Thanos abducted her from her home planet and raised her as a warrior. She did have Nebula as a sister but thanks to Thanos who forced them to combat each other in matches.
Thor may have been treated as comedic relief in Avengers: Endgame but let us pause and recall everything that pushed him to that extent. He didn’t become the leader of Asgard that easily as his father, Odin banished him to live on Earth without powers. As he finally earns the hammer and returns home, he is betrayed by his brother, Loki and the endless fight between the siblings begins.
Soon, he loses his mother, followed by an off-screen breakup with Jane Foster. He had not even processed this trauma when he finds out about his evil sister, loses his Mjolnir, and ends up on Saakar as a gladiator prisoner. He does manage to escape Saakar but learns that the only way to defeat Hela was by destroying his home, Asgard.
As he finally takes his people to earth as refugees after the battle, his ship is hijacked by Thanos who kills his friend Heimdall and his brother Loki with whom he had just reconciled. He must have been hit by a hurricane of emotions but he gulped it down to fight Thanos in Infinity War on Wakanda. What follows after it is history.
9. Tony Stark
Tony was always perceived as the careless industrialist who didn’t see anything beyond his inventions and their consequences. Only he knew how much he cared about his people and humanity deep down. He suffered PTSD from the Battle of New York where he realized that earth was a prime target of aliens. Stressed out that he may fail to save mankind, Tony created Ultron. Unfortunately, Ultron grew his own sentience and came to bite Tony in the back. When he finally got a family that loved him, Tony had to sacrifice his life and happiness for the greater good.
Everyone Wanda has ever loved or considered family was taken away from her. She watched her parents explode at their home back in Sokovia during the war when she was a kid. Her only remaining family, Pietro Maximoff aka Quicksilver also died while fighting the army of Ultron, the AI she had previously trusted. She was completely alone until she found Vision. But even their love story was cursed. Not only did she watch Vision die but she had to destroy the love of her life with her hands.