The Marvel Cinematic Universe had always made a reference to the real by giving us some very interesting parallels. Each movie involves a rather light-hearted formula that is a mix of massive battles and at the same time some fun from the characters. But upon looking closer one can see that there is a layer of depth about the characters which goes to show the attention to detail that is set up around them. We even get to see the consequences of these characters going through a variety of events over the movies and how that affects their regular life. There have been cases where the characters have indicated certain patterns of behavior that are indicative of these issues that they suffer from. Let’s take a look at some of the characters with mental health problems in the MCU.
Tony Stark has had a terrible history that was filled with tragedy. Added to that is his tendency of trying to be the father figure and sticking to his own self which later affects him if he doesn’t manage to live up to himself. It was only when he got to see his father that we saw him make peace. He had wanted to meet his father and talk to him and this eventually led him to make the BARF technology. While the hero had a lot of issues with his past, things only got worse in the present and his PTSD started to take effect right after the events of The Avengers. Even though it is explored in-depth in Iron Man 3, its presence was felt by him for quite a long time with the past few appearances.
Wanda has only experienced loss ever since she made her debut in the MCU. Losing her brother did have an impact but she was able to control it and Vision was able to get her through that. It was during this period that she was also indirectly being blamed during the events of Captain America: Civil War, and kept in a sort of a house arrest. After going through all that she managed to gather herself and stick around with Vision but the latter gets killed by Thanos during the events of Avengers: Infinity War. These things continue to affect the way that she lives and uses her powers and each of these come as bursts of anger and the final impact of this is seen in WandaVision. It seems we will continue to see these elements in her future appearances too as she appears next to Doctor Strange in the upcoming Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
One of the most brilliant depictions of depression is shown in the MCU with the character of the God of Thunder. The character undergoes some major trauma in the past few films that he appeared. In a single movie, we saw him lose his father, Asgard, and pretty soon his brother too. Thor still manages to get through all that and strike a blow on the Mad Titan but it was the wrong aim and it ends up making no difference at all. This leads to him going absolutely haywire and he hardly considers himself worthy anymore. It was only after meeting his mother after going back in time that he is able to make peace with everything that had unfolded in the movie.
Bruce Banner has a lot of issues and that has been indicated from the start of the franchise. The character already suffers from anger issues which he able to make peace with over the years. But around the end of the Infinity Saga, we see him suffering from a Dissociative Identity Disorder as Hulk became a persona of his own and had arguments with Bruce. So in Endgame, we get to meet Professor Hulk, which was basically the body of the green giant and the brains of Bruce Banner. This was probably a temporary solution considering later in the franchise we see that he has gone back to being Bruce Banner.
Thena made her debut in the Eternals and she was the only one who started showing problems because of a disease called Mah Wy’ry. This would bring her memories from the past and at the same time turn her against the other Eternals. There was too much risk in this as Thena is a warrior and if let lose she can cause some serious damage to her enemies. She doesn’t do that considering Gilgamesh helps her take her to live somewhere where they don’t have to suffer that much. It also ends up helping as her memory flashes actually bring to attention the true nature of the Eternals and the Celestials.
Norman Osborn might have made his MCU debut with Spider-Man: No Way Home but the character has some serious issues that fans got to witness in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 1. We saw that the character has another form of Dissociative Identity Disorder. During his appearance in No Way Home, we gather pity for him as Norman Osborn’s true self appears and he is scared and lost with all the chaos surrounding him. This actually allows for the other characters to take pity on him considering he himself volunteers to help them along with Peter. Even though all this was a hoax as the character was in his dark persona all through it we do see him finally getting cured by Peter himself.
The Mad Titan is one of the most important villains in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This character was being developed ever since his first appearances in The Avengers during the post-credits scene. But we only got a proper look at him when he appeared in Avengers: Infinity War which dedicated to his story in a major form. The character experienced his planned death due to overpopulation and he started believing that he was actually saving other races by massacring them. In simpler words, Thanos was a megalomaniacal psychopath who was motivated at going at his will. The biggest weakness he has is his love for his daughter but he doesn’t have any idea how to work on that.
Loki has had a troubled past specifically considering it was quite later that he discovered that he was the son of the people who were killed by his present parents. This makes him feel as if he doesn’t have anyone to call his own and thus starts doing terrible things to gain attention. Going ahead in the narrative would cause him suffering at the same time as it would further distance him from his own people.
Bucky Barnes is someone who has experienced a lot of tragic instances even though he wasn’t in control of most of them. Like Winter Soldier, he had to go through with some of the most ruthless kills in his life and this only made things worse going ahead. Even though he is trying his best to get out of the control of the HYDRA experiments his present work might put him back in those circumstances. He was provided with a therapist that might see some interesting developments coming to the way of Bucky in the future of the franchise.
The most essential part of the character of Moon Knight is going to be his Dissociative Identity Disorder. From the very first teasers, we saw that the character was going to be still suffering from these problems till he manages to come to terms with them. Even the comics have indicated that some of his conversations with Khonshu might haven’t even happened and might just have been products of his schizophrenia.
So these were the MCU characters with mental health problems.