10 Things You Might Not Know About the Marvel Universe

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Thor is the only one who can pick up Mjolnir, except he’s not.

Captain America, Beta Ray Bill, Superman, Wonder Woman, Conan The Barbarian, Thunderstrike (which, shockingly was not the name of a 90s WWF tag team), various sentient robots, and an unnamed paramedic have all lifted Thor’s hammer.

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The Human Torch was originally not human.

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The original Human Torch was actually an android that fought in WWII (anyone who’s picked up a history book knows that). Gracing the pages of Timely Comics and created by scientist Phineas Horton, the first Human Torch was originally considered a monster, but eventually came to be known as a hero.

 

Daredevil and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ origins resulted from the same event.

When the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles debuted in 1984, they were largely a parody of the comic book landscape at the time. Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird’s style borrowed heavily from Frank Miller’s dark and gritty interpretation of Daredevil, and the Turtles were only given distinct looks and lighter personalities when they were converted to television and targeted at a younger audience.

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Splinter (a parallel to Daredevil’s mentor “The Stick”) witnesses an NYC traffic accident involving a truck carrying radioactive ooze. He sees the canister strike a boy in the face before the ooze affects the turtles. That boy presumably is Matt Murdock, who, in his own origin, was affected by an identical incident in which the ooze blinded him but heightened his remaining senses. It’s also no coincidence that the evil ninja clan in Daredevil is named The Hand, while the Ninja Turtles’ foe is called The Foot.

 

Psylocke, the Asian ninja assassin, wasn’t born Asian.

It’s really cool to see people cosplay as Psylocke. It is not that cool to try to explain her origin. Psylocke began life in the Marvel Universe as Betsy Braddock, the twin sister of Captain Britain, who incidentally must have the laziest basis for a character in all of comics, and this is a medium that features things like Red Hulk, Man Bat, and Reverse Flash.

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Betsy didn’t waste much time being Captain Knockoff’s sister though, as she eventually acquired the body, skills and personality of a Japanese female ninja mutant, which would have made for a cool story arc that gets fixed in the end when everyone gets their lives back, except that it’s just her origin now. Mind you, it’s not quite that simple- there was a stint filling in as Captain Britain, a brief modeling career, some spy work, magic doors, cybernetic eyes, and a six-armed cyborg invloved, but just know that Psylocke was not born Asian, despite now being Asian. Moving on.

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