The universe of Marvel Comics is full of fantastic gadgets. Without even considering alternate realities or possible future, the mainstream Earth-616 features a range of technology that varies from what’s merely around the corner to displays of pure science fiction bordering on mysticism. It makes sense that a world populated by super-geniuses, sorcerers, and secret government agents has a host of amazing devices.
Comic book characters are encountering, using, and inventing new forms of technology constantly. Some of these items are even feasible or backed by real science, while others are purely imaginary and could only exist inside of a superhero comic. But which of these devices are the most iconic, fascinating, enviable pieces of tech any fan would want to try out?
Click the button below to start this article in quick view.
Possibly the most essential part of Spider-Man’s character, the web-shooters Peter Parker designed are his main form of transportation and first option for taking down villains (particularly because he’s strong enough to kill a non-powered human in one punch.) After being bitten by a genetically altered spider and transformed into Spider-Man, a young Peter Parker designed the web-shooters and their corresponding ‘web fluid.’ The devices are activated by applying a specific level of pressure to the trigger mechanism, causing them to fire synthetic webbing. Though Peter has massively upgraded the web-shooters since then – going truly high-tech when his budget allows – a particularly notable upgrade is allowing them to fire spider-tracers which interact with his spider-sense, allowing him to track his villains.
Though he typically sticks to the standard formula for his web fluid – one which is stronger than steel, but quickly biodegradable – Peter has developed various other versions including acid webbing, ice webbing, and even sonic webbing to name a few. Peter has also mastered the use of his webbing and can use them to create not just single strands, but complex nets and shapes. So skilled is Spider-Man with his webs that, with enough time, he can even create sculptures with them.
The Multisect is an amazing device constructed by none other than the smartest man in the world, Reed Richards. Introduced in Chip Zdarsky and Jim Cheung’s Marvel 2-In-One #1, the Multisect granted access to the Multiverse. Richards created it so that, in the event of his death, the other members of the Fantastic Four could continue their exploration of the Multiverse. The Multisect accomplished this task by giving one access to the Multiplane, a nexus for seemingly infinite universes. Unfortunately, when an alternate-future version of the Sandman arrived in the prime Marvel universe, the Multisect was destroyed when Human Torch used it to send Sandman back to his original reality.
Star-Lord’s Element Guns can be combined or disassembled into different forms of firearm, but they’re most commonly twin pistols capable of conjuring and firing the four classical elements.Though the version of Star-Lord in the Marvel Cinematic Universe utilizes ‘Quad Blasters’ of a similar design to their comic book counterparts, the weapons wielded by the Peter Quill of the comics are much more powerful, not to mention strange. So strange in fact, Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn stated the guns were too much for a film that already featured fantastical components like a talking tree and an anthropomorphic raccoon traversing the stars together.
In Al Ewing’s Guardians of the Galaxy, Quill’s gun became even more fantastic when he used it to take down the reborn Olympian gods. Quill used his Element Gun to absorb the energies of the rampaging Greek pantheon, seemingly sacrificing himself in the process. In fact, Quill survived and discovered his weapon significantly changed. Training with his weapons, Quill discovered that mastery of a wider range of elements gave him almost indescribably varied super powers.
While Ant-Man’s shrinking powers come from Pym Particles that stretch the definition of gadgetry, his helmet is another matter entirely. Hank Pym designed the Ant-Man helmet to allow its user to communicate with insect life – a skill later holders of the title have used to strike up a genuine bond with both aliens and the insect queens of the prehistoric Savage Land, leading to the truly gross giant insect suit Ant-Man Scott Lang was able to create; not through super-powers, but through communication. The helmet also contains a miniaturized, fully functional laboratory – not so cool if you can’t get to it, but enough to earn it a place on this list as a gadget that you can use to build other gadgets.
‘Big Time’ Stealth Suit
Making its debut in Dan Slott and Humberto Ramos’ Amazing Spider-Man #650 as part of the ‘Big Time’ story arc, in which Peter was able to finally experiment with some real resources, Spidey constructed his Stealth Suit to counter the new Hobgoblin’s Sonic Laugh. After being defeated twice by this ability, Spider-Man falls back and regroups before constructing the suit, stating that it warps light and sound, which not only makes him invisible but immune to sonic waves as well. Spider-Man teamed up with Black Cat to defeat Hobgoblin and retrieve the Reverbium (the opposite of Vibranium) he’d stolen. While there are more powerful enhancile suits like Iron Man’s armor, Spider-Man has shown there are areas where he’s Tony Stark’s equal as an inventor of gadgets, and the stealth suit is a unique piece of technology made for a single awesome purpose.
When Ben Grimm, aka the Thing, lost his powers after absorbing too much of the Hulk’s radiation, Mister Fantastic designed an exo-suit based on Ben’s original powers and appearance. Reed hoped the suit would at least boost Thing’s ability to the levels of Luke Cage, but in actuality it allowed Ben to access around 90% of his original strength. The suit was also amazingly durable, capable of withstanding a blast from Galactus. Ben used the suit off and on as needed until it fell into the hands of pop star sensation Darla Deering.
When Mister Fantastic realized his powers were decaying, he appointed Ant-Man (Scott Lang) as interim leader of the Fantastic Four while Reed and company traversed the Multiverse in hopes of restoring his powers and health. Each member of the original Fantastic Four was meant to find their replacement, but Johnny Storm waited until the last second and therefore appointed his girlfriend Darla. Since Darla had no powers of her own, she wore the now upgraded Thing Suit as Miss Thing. Now, touching two ‘Thing Rings’ together causes particles to emerge that form the suit around the user. The Thing Rings themselves are a reference to the 1970s Fantastic Four cartoon, where the protagonist Benjy Grimm used rings to transform into the Thing. Making the Thing Suit something the user can summon out of thin air only made it cooler.
So, which device is the coolest on this list? Likely, that depends on the powers you personally want to gain, but Spider-Man’s web-shooters are the most iconic. Yes, there are some huge real-world problems that could be solved with the use of Star-Lord’s Element Guns, and the Multisect has untold possibilities, but who hasn’t pretended that they had web-shooters at some point as a child – and possibly into adulthood? Besides their iconic status, the web-shooters are also an essential part of Peter Parker’s origins and his appeal as a character. As cool as the Stealth Suit and Thing Suit are, there’s a reason they only appeared for a short time, while the web-shooters became a fixture of Marvel Comics‘ most iconic hero that never go away for long.
Next: Black Panther Has A Weapon To Fight The Phoenix Force
content: ‘/ ‘;
<!–[if IE 9]>
<!–[if IE 9]><![endif]–>
About The Author