The Most Unethical Things Superheroes Have Done Onscreen (Other Than Murder)

List Rules
Vote up the most ethically shady things superheroes have ever done.

Superheroes are meant to be the best of us. The ideals we strive toward. But hey, they're human too! Well... most of them are human, at least. They're allowed to make mistakes from time to time. That being said, there have been some ethically shady things superheroes have done on film that make you take a step back.

Did Thor really have to start another Asgard-Jotunheim war just to soothe his petty ego? Did Professor X really have to wipe the mind of Moira MacTaggart at the end of X-Men: First Class? And Tony Stark really didn't have to get into the Iron Man armor while drunk in Iron Man 2. Get ready to feel a little bit better about your life decisions as we run through some of the most unethical things superheroes have ever done on film (outside of, you know, straight-up taking people out).


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    14 VOTES

    The Justice League Standing Around Talking While Steppenwolf Tortures Humans In 'Justice League'

    Although there are many merits when comparing Zack Snyder's Justice League to the actual Justice League theatrical cut, an interesting one happens when the heroes first encounter Steppenwolf. Snyder's version of this scene has the League formulate a quick plan to take on Darkseid's minion before Cyborg leaps in to save his father. The theatrical cut, however, takes a bit longer to get to the action.

    Why? Because we really needed to see Barry Allen have a freakout/quip fest about how he's never been in a fight before. Sorry, he's "never done battle" before. Hey, Flash? Batman? An alien is down there torturing innocent humans, and you guys are taking your sweet time! Oh, and the bit where Wonder Woman comes up with a quick plan of attack is cut out as well. It's just one of the many scenes in the theatrical cut that seem a bit off.

    14 votes
  • The Scarlet Witch Holding An Entire Town Hostage, Both Mentally And Physically, In 'WandaVision'
    Photo: Disney+

    There is no way around it: the Scarlet Witch certainly isn't the villain of WandaVision, but she absolutely is villain. It turns out holding an entire town hostage both mentally and physically is more along the lines of something a supervillain would do, not a member of the Avengers. When you hear the words "mass mind control," you don't think of Earth's Mightiest Heroes.

    Yeah, she didn't mean to take over Westview and warp all of its denizens into different people against their will... but she kept it going for a while after she figured out the whole thing was accidentally her fault. Watching the denizens plead with her to let them go in the series' final episode isn't the easiest thing to watch. Wanda eventually comes to terms with the whole thing and says goodbye to her children and Vision as she frees Westview, but there is no arguing how unethical her temporary control over the town really was.

    21 votes
  • Andrew Garfield's Peter Parker from the Amazing Spider-Man movies isn't your dad's Peter Parker. He's super handsome! He skateboards! He listens to Phillip Phillips for some inexplicable reason! The point is, this Pete is a bit different from both other live-action Spider-Men, as well as his comic book counterpart.

    For example, he tortures some villains when he first puts on the costume as he is hunting Uncle Ben's killer. Spidey is running around New York hunting criminals as he looks for a baddie with a wrist tattoo. When he catches a carjacker at one point, he webs him against a wall to check for the tat after messing with him for a little bit. Upon discovering he doesn't have the tattoo, Peter says, "This could've gone a lot worse." Pete! You're supposed to be the good guy!

    9 votes
  • The God of Thunder's character arc throughout Thor centers around him learning how to be a better, more understanding man before taking the throne of Asgard. Seeing as Thor ends up rejecting the throne altogether at the end of the movie, it seems Odin's plan to have his son learn some humility worked a little too well when it's all said and done. But let's talk about how much of a meathead Thor was during the beginning of the movie, shall we?

    Goaded by Loki, Thor starts a full-fledged war between the Asgardians and the Frost Giants of Jotunheim during the film's opening scenes. Why? Because a Frost Giant calls him "little princess." The opening scenes of Thor paint the petulant God of Thunder as a perfect picture of toxic masculinity. Thankfully, Thor gets a serious dressing down from Odin and gets sent to Earth to (rather quickly) learn how to be a better person.

    14 votes
  • Charles Xavier, AKA Professor X, is a powerful mutant whose base power level is so great, he's kind of written out of the majority of X-Men stories just so the plot can function. That's how powerful he is. And with power comes the ability to make bad choices. The man gets up to all kinds of shady business throughout the comics, but it's not like he's exempt from making poor decisions in the films too. Case in point: when he wipes the memory of Moira at the end of X-Men: First Class.

    "They can threaten me all they want, Charles. I'll never tell them where you are. Ever." That's the last thing Moira MacTaggert says to Charles Xavier at the end of the movie before he kisses her and wipes her mind. Next thing you know, Moira is back in Washington, DC, with almost no memory of the film's events whatsoever. Not cool, Charles. She ends up getting her memories back in X-Men: Apocalypse anyways!

    22 votes
  • The Dark Knight of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice seemingly has no problem killing people. Ben Affleck's Bruce Wayne appears to take the lives of at least 20 people throughout the 2016 film. Not exactly reminiscent of the comic book Batman whose only absolute rule is not to kill anyone, is it? The DCEU took most of its cues from Zack Snyder, though, and the 300 director was clearly comfortable with Batman taking lives from time to time. Which makes the whole branding thing that much weirder.

    You see, the grizzled DCEU Batfleck would sometimes brand criminals before handing them over to the cops on their way to prison. The differences in the theatrical cut and the "Ultimate" cut make this decision quite muddy. In the theatrical cut, the branding seemingly sees incarcerated people get murdered in prison. In the "Ultimate" cut, the people who take out the guy Batman branded were paid to do so by KGBeast. So is he branding people to get them taken out, or is he branding people as some sort of Zorro-esque power play? No clue! Still, it's not a very normal thing to do... even for a guy who dresses up like a bat to fight evil.

    13 votes