Doctor Doom - Cultural Impact

Cultural Impact

In the book Superhero: The Secret Origin of a Genre, Peter Coogan writes that Doctor Doom's appearance was representative of a change in the portrayal of "mad scientists" to full-fledged villains, often with upgraded powers. Doom is also emblematic of a specific subset of supervillain, which comic book critic Peter Sanderson describes as a "megavillain". These supervillains are genre-crossing villains who exist in adventures "in a world in which the ordinary laws of nature are slightly suspended"; characters such as Professor Moriarty, Count Dracula, Auric Goldfinger, Hannibal Lecter, Lex Luthor and Darth Vader, also fit this description. Sanderson also found traces of William Shakespeare’s characters Richard III and Iago in Doctor Doom; all of them "are descended from the 'vice' figure of medieval drama", who address the audience in monologues detailing their thoughts and ambitions.

Described as "iconic", Doom is one of the most well-received supervillains of the Marvel universe, as well as one of the most recurring; in his constant battles with heroes and other villains, Doom has appeared more times than any other villain. The comics site Panels of Awesome ranked Doom as the number one villain in their listing of the top ten villains in comics; Wizard Magazine went a step further by declaring Doom the fourth greatest villain of all time.

Comic Book Resources ranks Doom as their fourth favorite Marvel character. Journalist Brent Ecenbarger cited him being able to "stand up against entities like Mephisto, the Beyonder, and Galactus and often come out on top", as well as the tragedy of any "other number of circumstances could have led to Doom being a savior, but as it is, instead he remains Marvel’s greatest villain." Fellow journalist Jason Stanhope called his "master of sorcery and technology an unusual combination", and also felt "his inner sense of nobility sets him apart from lesser villains, in a similar manner to Magneto." Doom has also been favorably regarded by those who wrote for the character; Stan Lee declared Doom his favorite villain, saying " could come to the United States and he could do almost anything, and we could not arrest him because he has diplomatic immunity. Also, he wants to rule the world and if you think about it, wanting to rule the world is not a crime." Mark Waid echoed Lee's assessment of the character, stating that Doom " got a great look, a great visual design a dynamite origin."

A ride called Doctor Doom's Fearfall is located at Islands of Adventure in the Universal Orlando Resort.

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