We have seen many amazing black characters in the Marvel Universe over the years. Although we have only started to see more representation in the last couple of years, hopefully, the push for representation will still be as important in the years to come. Without these characters, we would’ve missed out on some amazing acting performances from Viola Davis, Michael B. Jordan, the late Chadwick Boseman, and many more. Not to mention that Angela Bassett, who played the character, Ramonda, is the first Marvel star to receive an Oscar nomination. With that said, we are going to take a look at the 15 best black Marvel superheroes and villains of all time.
If you are a fan of the Marvel Universe and you have found this interesting so far, you should stick with us and keep reading for more!
Created By: Marc McLaurin and Dwayne Turner
Debut: Cage #1 (1992)
Hardcore is a known Marvel villain, and his first appearance was in the Luke Cage comic series. He was born on a Caribbean island and later became a mercenary and an expert weapons specialist. One of his duties was training and supervising the Untouchables group.
His criminal overlord would give him orders which he would then pass on to the Untouchables. Hardcore would send them on different missions that they would have to follow. His first encounter with Luke Cage was when he was based in Chicago.
Created By: Gerry Conway, Alex Saviuk
Debut: Web of Spider-Man #36 (1988)
Tombstone is another Marvel villain that made his first appearance in the 1988 comic series the Web of Spider-Man. He grew up in Harlem, New York City, and that is also where he went to school. He had a lot of difficulties adjusting to his peers since he was albino.
Tombstone was a nickname he would receive later when he became very muscular. It was his way of getting stronger and finally being able to fight against his bullies. Over the years, his experiences built an overall negative view of the world and people in general. Eight years had gone by, and he was now the mob enforcer in Philadelphia.
Created By: Dennis O’Neil and Alan Weiss
Debut: Amazing Spider-man #209 (1980)
Calypso is a Marvel villain that had her first appearance in the Amazing Spider-Man comic series. Her powers were rooted in her voodoo abilities, and she was of Haitian descent. Her manipulative nature and psychotic tendencies would often come out with Kraven the Hunter.
She would usually fuel his rage toward Spider-Man, and eventually, this would lead Kraven to commit suicide. The nature of voodoo is, in this case, linked to sacrifice, and her powers increased significantly after she sacrificed her younger sister. She almost managed to murder Spider-Man using Curt Connors, also known as The Lizard.
12. Isaiah Bradley
Created By: Axel Alonso, Robert Morales, Kyle Baker
Debut: Truth: Red, White & Black #1 (2003)
Isaiah Bradley is a Marvel superhero that first appeared in the comic series called Truth: Red, White & Black. Chronologically, Isaiah was the first Captain America. He was a part of Project Rebirth, and as part of this project, he was used as a test subject.
Isaiah was not the only one; in fact, out of the 300 test subjects, he was the lone survivor. The people behind the project wanted to create the Super Soldier Serum, which would ultimately create the perfect warrior. After surviving the experimental phase and becoming incredibly strong, he took on the role of Captain America.
11. Misty Knight
Created By: Tony Isabella, Arvell Jones
Debut: Marvel Premiere #21 (1975)
Misty Knight, also known as Mercedes Knight, was a Marvel superhero that first appeared in the comic series Marvel Premiere in 1975. She was from New York, and that is also where she graduated from the Police Academy. She was a very diligent student, and that was one of the reasons why she graduated with honors.
Not only that, but her motivation and diligence made it, so she rose through the ranks pretty quickly. While she was working as a police officer, she became really close friends with Colleen Wing. After that, Misty became a detective and later joined the bomb squad of the New York Police Department.
10. Brother Voodoo
Created By: Len Wein, John Romita Sr., Stan Lee, Roy Thomas
Debut: Strange Tales #169 (1973)
Brother Voodoo, also known as Jericho Drumm, is another Marvel superhero that made his debut in the Strange Tale comic series. He is originally from Haiti but went to America, where he became a renowned scholar. He never really believed in the supernatural, but when his twin brother passed away, something changed in him.
After his brother’s death, he vowed to honor his legacy and take on all of the responsibilities of becoming a houngan. Papa Jambo was the one who trained Brother Voodoo, and with all the new knowledge he gained, he was able to protect the innocent.
9. Erik Killmonger
Created By: Don McGregor, Rich Buckler
Debut: Jungle Action #6 (1973)
Erik Killmonger is a Marvel villain that made his first appearance in the Jungle Action comic series. Erik is also known as N’Jadaka, and he had a very turbulent childhood. He believed that his chance at the Wakandan throne was taken from him.
He would go on to lead his life in exile; during that time, he was taught by M’Demwe, who became his mentor. For years M’Demwe groomed Erik’s hatred and rage towards Wakanda, which later became his ultimate goal – to take back what belonged to him.
8. War Machine
Created By: David Michelinie, John Byrne, Bob Layton
Debut: Iron Man #118 (1979)
War Machine, also known as Jim Rhodes, is another Marvel superhero that made his first appearance in the Iron Man comic series. He is a close colleague and friend of Tony Stark. Stark entrusted him with the use of the Iron Man suit. Jim started as Stark’s personal pilot and, over time, became his right hand, assisting in different missions.
When Stark was going through a really tough time, he shut everyone out and drowned his sorrows in alcohol; Jim stepped in as Iron Man. However, the Iron Man suit took a toll on him psychologically, so he decided he had to stop before it was too late.
Created By: Marv Wolfman, Gene Colan
Debut: The Tomb of Dracula #10 (July 1973)
Blade, also known as Eric Brooks, was a Marvel hero that first appeared in the comic series called The Tomb of Dracula. He was born in 1929 in London, and his story began right at that time. Eric’s mother was sent away to find shelter since his father was part of a secret society that led him to his imprisonment.
Tara, Blade’s mother, found shelter in a brothel owned by Madame Vanity. During her birth, Tara experienced a lot of complications which led to her death. The doctor that was called to help Tara was a vampire that attacked her, some of his enzymes entered Tara’s bloodstream, and eventually Blade’s too. This turned him into a Dhampir, half-human and half-vampire.
6. Luke Cage
Created By: Archie Goodwin, George Tuska, Roy Thomas, John Romita Sr.
Debut: Luke Cage, Hero for Hire #1 (1972)
Luke Cage, also known as Carl Lucas, was another Marvel hero that first appeared in the Luke Cage comic series in 1972. Luke Cage was born in Harlem, New York, and this is where he spent his childhood. As a young boy, he joined a gang called Rivals alongside his friends.
There was another gang that was called Diablos, and the two of them would often fight each other. Because of this, Luke spent a lot of his teen years in juvenile homes before realizing he didn’t want to go down this path anymore.
Created By: Stan Lee, Gene Colan
Debut: Captain America #117 (1969)
Falcon, also known as Sam Wilson, was a Marvel superhero that first appeared in the Captain America comic series. Sam had a rough childhood, and his father died trying to stop a fight between two rival gangs in Harlem.
A couple of years later, his mother was killed as well by a thief that attacked them. This changed Sam in many ways; he tried to live his life right and stay out of trouble. He became a social worker but was later lured to a Caribbean island. This is where Red Skull attacked him and Captain America.
Created By: Todd McFarlane
Debut: Spawn #1 (1992)
Spawn, also known as Al Simmons, was a Marvel antihero that first appeared in the Spawn comic series, also called Spawn. He trained in one of the most difficult military departments, the Marine Corps. Even with the immensely difficult training regime, he was thought of as a very gifted officer.
During a mission in Botswana, Simmons was murdered, and because of his past as an assassin, he was sent to Hell. However, his story didn’t end there; in Hell, he met a being known as Malebolgia. Simmons arranged a deal with that being to come back to life one last time so he could see his wife.
3. Miles Morales
Created By: Brian Michael Bendis, Sara Pichelli
Debut: Ultimate Fallout #4 (2011)
Miles Morales, better known as Spider-Man, is a Marvel superhero that first appeared in the Ultimate Fallout comic series. Miles was part of a different universe from Peter Parker, who we know as the original Spider-Man.
Since the different Multiverses are connected, when Peter Parker died, and his Multiverse was destroyed, Miles was transported to that timeline instead. His story began in the same way as Peter’s being bitten by a genetically altered spider. Consequently, this gave him the power to become Spider-Man.
Created By: Len Wein, Dave Cockrum
Debut: Giant-Size X-Men #1 (1975)
Storm is one of the most iconic characters in the Marvel universe, and she first appeared in the Giant-Size X-Men comic series. Storm is the daughter of a Kenyan princess and an American journalist. Both of her parents died in a tragic accident when a plane crashed into their home.
Her abilities make it so that she can control the weather, and even as a teenager, she tried to help in any way she could. She could ease the droughts in the Serengeti plains, where she was living at the time.
1. Black Panther
Created By: Stan Lee, Jack Kirby
Debut: Fantastic Four #52 (1966)
Black Panther is another really important Marvel character that first appeared in the Fantastic Four comic series. Black Panther, also known as T’Challa, was the head of Wakanda, which is the most technologically advanced country on the planet.
With the Black Panther suit comes a lot of responsibilities; the person wearing it has to be the King, the religious leader, and the commander-in-chief, all united into one. Wakanda developed advanced technology thanks to a material called Vibranium, and with this material, T’Challa has to pledge his life to serve humankind so that he can use its power.