5 Marvelous Character Foils
If there’s one thing that defines the worlds of Marvel Comics and the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it’s the characters! These vibrant individuals loom larger than life, and really give us someone to root for! One of the ways that character traits are revealed are through a narrative technique known as “character foils.”
When two characters are foils for one another, they are intentionally compared and contrasted. By the time the story is over, you have gotten a better understanding of both characters, often because of the way they interacted with each other, and the way they each reacted differently (or the same way) to external stimuli.
Still not sure what I’m talking about, Marvel Blog True Believers? Never fear: there are dozens upon dozens of examples from Marvel Comics and the MCU! Here are seven of them.
1. Spider-Man & Deadpool
Have you noticed a similarity in appearance between Spider-Man and the Merc with a Mouth? You’re not alone! The two masked superheroes have a long history of being confused with one another. But in spite of the fact that they may look similar, they have very different approaches to problem solving!
However, while the two may have very disparate outlooks on life, they nevertheless often end up as character foils for one another… as in Spider-Man and Deadpool, a 50-issue series that saw the pair teamed-up.
2. Daredevil & The Punisher
In the Netflix Marvel shows, we got to meet a lot of vigilantes – like, a lot! But not all vigilantes are created equal, as demonstrated by Daredevil (Charlie Cox) and The Punisher (Jon Bernthal).
However, while The Punisher may be motivated by vengeance and Daredevil may be seeking justice, both operate according to a strict moral code. Maybe they’re not as different as they first appear!
3. Hawkeye & Echo
In the fifth episode of Hawkeye, the ongoing MCU series on Disney+, Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner, dressed as Ronin) battles against Echo (Alaqua Cox), eventually besting her… but then he draws a comparison between her quest for vengeance, because those closest to her have been taking away from her, and his own experiences during the blip.
“We’re the same,” Clint tells Echo, confirming their status as foils.
4. Captain America & “Captain America”
In Captain America and the Winter Solider, we saw John Walker (Wyatt Russell) claim the title of “Captain America.” However, that title belonged to Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie)!
By the time this six-episode series was completed, we better understood the difference between Walker and Wilson… and somehow, it seems unlikely we’ve seen the last of these character foils!
5. Hawkeye & Hawkeye
Finally, there are two very obvious foils to address: Hawkeye (Hailee Steinfeld) and Hawkeye!
Both Barton and Kate Bishop have a lot in common, but they also have a lot of differences. As the co-leads of Hawkeye, we’ve gotten to better understand both of their characters!
Who are your favorite foils in the Marvel universe? We want to hear from you, Marvel Blog True Believers! Share your thoughts with us in the comment section.