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Superheroes Who Started Out As Villains

Updated September 3, 2020 39.1k votes 8.0k voters 3.1m views22 items

List RulesVote up the heroes you're most surprised to learn were once bad guys

Super villains become heroes all the time. In comic books, it can be hard to tell the good guys from the bad guys in the first place. Nearly everyone wears masks and brightly colored spandex, after all. Even Spider-Man is a MENACE according to at least one New York newspapers. In such a strange world of cosmic happenings and super shenanigans, of course there are many villains who turned into superheroes.

These superheroes who started out bad range from the obscure, like Pied Piper, to the mainstream, like the Merc with a Mouth. Heck, a plenty of core X-Men have changed sides, as any fan of Gambit, Emma Frost, or Rogue could tell you. These comic book bad guys who became good guys are everywhere. You're favorite hero might have debuted as a villain. Don't think so? Would it surprise you to learn that Hawkeye tried to rob the Avengers before becoming one of Earth's Mightiest Heroes?

More surprises await you in this list of supervillains turned superheroes.These are the comic book heroes who started out as villains! Vote up your favorite reformed bad guy below!
  • Not only is Falcon Captain America's best friend (next to Bucky), he spent a spell wearing the red, white, and blue as Cap. But he actually got his powers working alongside Red Skull. Before he turned good he was a petty Harlem thug and Red Skull henchman, then on getting his powers quickly turned on Skull and teamed up with Cap. They've been bros ever since.
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  • Photo: Marvel Comics
    Rogue initially started out as an Avengers villain. She even took out Captain America! If you think about her powerset, it totally makes sense that she'd square off against Earth's Mightiest Heroes. Still, she's far more interesting as a tortured hero, which her decades with the X-Men have proven.
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  • Photo: Marvel Comics
    Hawkeye's first encounter with the Avengers was.. robbing them. That's right, one of the most iconic Avengers was a petty thief. They soon saw his talent and convinced him to join them. The Avengers indirectly nodded to his history by having Loki brainwash him into supervillainous shenanigans throughout most of the film.
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    Gambit is one of those heroes that always seems to be up to something. That's because he started as a villain, albeit a charming man-about-town thief of a villain. It was later revealed he was partially responsible for the massacre of the Morlocks. He's made up for as a member of Xavier's crew, though.
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