He Might Be Small But He Casts a HUGE Shadow in Marvel Comics
Despite the success of Ant Man at the box office, the smallest member of the Avengers remains a lesser known comic book character. With the Blu-ray/DVD release of ANT MAN today, we wanted to celebrate the comic book impact of this diminutive but important superhero and highlight some of his coolest exploits from the world of Marvel Comics.
5. Ant-Man starts a security agency while living in a dollhouse
If you’re looking for someplace to bone up on Ant-Man comics, the most recent series by Nick Spencer and Ramon Rosanas is a great place to start. It’s a fun adventure series with a sharp sense of humor and a lot of heart.
Like the movie, the series focuses on Scott Lang, the thief-turned-superhero who succeeded the old Ant-Man, Hank Pym. We follow Scott as he moves to Miami to be closer to his daughter Cassie, who is currently living with her mom, Scott’s estranged ex-wife. Determined to prove himself but lacking the skills and prosthetics to pull a Mrs. Doubtfire-like con, Scott instead starts his own enterprise: Ant-Man Security Solutions.
Using the shady tricks of his past to go straight seems like a smart idea, but it doesn’t always work as planned.
Scott enlists Z-level supervillains Grizzly and Machinesmith to help him build out his small business, but his activities ended up attracting the attention of real bad guys. Well, third party bad guys who were contracted by real bad guys. Thankfully, Scott has an army of moldable ants he can use to punch goons like Taskmaster.
In the end, Ant-Man will probably always be a B-tier superhero, but that’s what makes his adventures so enjoyable. Sure, he’s kind of a cad. Sure, he’ll shirk responsibility at the first possible chance. But he’s also the underdog. Scott will always try to do the right thing in the end, especially when it comes to his daughter.
The series makes clever use of the premise of a down-on-his-luck superhero. When Scott runs out of toothpaste, he uses his powers to shrink down and go inside the tube to make the most of the last few dregs. Instead of renting an expensive Miami apartment, Scott buys an Iron Man playset and lives inside. Cassie is more than happy with her dad’s new digs, especially because it means a cell phone becomes a giant-screen TV.
Now that we’ve gotten genuine character moments and heartfelt emotion out of the way, we can get to some old fashioned ultraviolence.
4. Ant-Man tears Doctor Doom apart
Here’s the thing about Scott Lang and his daughter Cassie: They’ve both been dead at various points in comics history. Scott was killed by Scarlet Witch, then brought back to life only to immediately witness the death of Cassie at the hands of Doctor Doom. This understandably enraged Scott, but he didn’t get his revenge on Doom until the end of Matt Fraction and Mike Allred‘s run on the Fantastic Four Spinoff comic FF.
The wait was totally worth it.
I can’t express enough how rad this is. Doctor Doom is basically Iron Man plus Doctor Strange wrapped up in an evil dictator. And this isn’t a clone or a Doombot — Scott is actually crushing Victor Von Doom’s actual gauntlets, before he proceeds to tear him limb from limb.
Since when was Ant-Man this powerful? It takes some comic book science to explain it. See, up to this point, Scott and the others who took up the mantle of Ant-Man were using Pym Particles to shrink and grow at will. But starting with this story arc, Scott discovered that Pym Particles can do more than just change the size — they can also shift the strength and durability of the user. Translated to movie terms, this kind of ability would bump up Ant-Man to Thor levels of power, maybe even beyond. It doesn’t matter that Marvel doesn’t have the rights to Doctor Doom on film — an Ant-Man that packs this kind of punch could go up against Thanos.
With this newfound power, Scott beat the everloving shit of the man who killed his daughter. On top of that, he made Doom think he killed a child.
Valeria Richards, daughter of Reed Richards and Sue Storm, had become like a daughter to Doom; the thought that he accidentally killed one of the only people in the world that understood him shook Victor to his very core. Of course, it was just a ruse and Val was perfectly fine, but that doesn’t change the fact that Ant-Man was able to destroy Doctor Doom physically and emotionally.
Moral of the story: Don’t screw with Ant-Man.
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