The 10 Worst Things MCU Parents Have Done

The only reason that Hank Pym makes this list is because the way he dealt with his wife’s death ended up doing more harm to his daughter than good. Instead of spending time with Hope and making sure that she was dealing with her grief as much as he was, he chose to become a recluse of sorts and pushed her out of his life.

His relationship with Hope is obviously better now, however, his behavior towards her as she was growing up resulted in her thinking that she wasn’t important to him – something that is extremely traumatizing, especially for a child who has just lost one parent. It’s only with the help of Scott that Hope and Hank are able to fully repair their relationship and build a bond that will hopefully only get stronger.

Howard Stark

Like Hank Pym, Howard Stark was a very absent father from Tony Stark‘s life. Unfortunately, he couldn’t blame this behavior on the death of a spouse, and he never got the chance to repair his relationship with his son. Because of this, Tony ended up becoming an adult full of insecurities that were hidden under an extremely large ego and deflected by arrogance and stubbornness.

Once again, Tony‘s relationship with his father only becomes better after he finds a video where Howard professes the most unexpected sentiment stating, “What is, and always will be my greatest creation… is you.” While Howard never gets the chance to experience this change, the moment is very telling, because sometimes all people need to hear to feel better is that they are, in fact, loved and cherished by their parents.

Xu Wenwu

Driven to grief by Ying Li’s death, Wenwu – also known as the villain, the Mandarin – put immense pressure on a young Shang-Chi to avenge his mother’s death. On the path to get him ready for this vengeance, Wenwu not only pushes his son to physical limits in an attempt to make him an assassin, but he constantly reiterates that it’s his fault for not protecting his mother.

Further, while his entire focus is on his son, he also ends up neglecting – or in fact, completely ignoring the existence of – his daughter, Xialing. This turns both of his children against him and they flee from their house as soon as they are old enough to leave. Wenwu’s behavior towards them also drives a wedge between the two siblings.


By the end of Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. II it can be argued that Yondu has definitely redeemed himself from who he used to be. Unfortunately, that does not mean that he was always the parent that Peter Quill deserved – though he was definitely a better alternative to Ego, someone that he protected Peter from for many years.

After kidnapping Peter from earth, Yondu uses him as his own personal thief because of his tiny physique, which gave him the capacity to fit into smaller spaces. He also kept Peter in constant terror by threatening to eat him if he didn’t do what he was told. The only reason Yondu does not rank higher is because his love for Peter shines through in a few moments and, in the end, he made the right decision.


Even though Odin is nowhere close to the top half of this list, he definitely makes it in the middle spectrum because of how he fueled strife between Thor and Loki. While he obviously felt immense pride for Thor, he ended up feeding his arrogance to a destructive level. Alternatively, he constantly compared Loki to him, creating a character so full of insecurities that he was willing to find any way to outdo Thor.

Odin’s true nature as a father comes to light in Thor: Ragnarok when the brothers get to know that they have an elder third sister who is the Goddess of Death. The fact that Odin had to capture her says a lot about how he went wrong in bringing her up.

General Dreykov

In Black Widow, viewers finally come face-to-face with the man responsible for creating Natasha Romanoff – as well as Yelena Belova and countless others. Unfortunately, their trauma is not the worst that Dreykov is responsible for. Though there are a lot of instances that can be mentioned, the most important is his daughter – Antonia.

Not only does he subjugate his daughter and put her through a lot of pain, but he also strips her of any free will and enslaves her to his command. While it is unlikely that fans will get to see a story focused on Antonia’s recovery, it would be great to see her in upcoming movies alongside Yelena and see her progress as she heals from everything her father has done to her.


Thanos was a bad parent in a number of very distinct manners, the most obvious being that he outright tortured his children under the pretext of training them – with Nebula getting the much rougher end of the stick. He also loved pitting Gamora and Nebula against each other.

By the end of Infinity War, it is extremely obvious that Thanos definitely loved Gamora, if not Nebula, in his own twisted way. However, after spending her whole life being traumatized by her “father” and watching her sister suffer at his hands, Gamora’s realization that he actually did love her – right before he threw her off the cliff at Vormir – has to be one of the most tragic moments in the MCU.


Ego is without a doubt one of the most remorseless and unfeeling characters ever seen in the MCU. He’s also the worst parent – something that can be said with surety not just because of how he treated Peter but also because of the endless children that came before him.

Not only did he tell Peter that the entire purpose of his existence was to make Ego more powerful, but he also killed his mom. While Peter may still have been able to deal with the blow of realizing that his father never really cared about him, it’s the insinuation that his father killed his mother for literally no reason, other this his lack of self-control, that is something that will affect Peter for the rest of his life.

Wendy Spector

Moon Knight‘s fifth episode most definitely brought every fan to their knees when it came to the emotional carnage that it brought with it. After watching Marc and Steven interact with each other, viewers expected a lot to happen in this episode, but nobody expected what actually happened next.

Marc Spector’s backstory has to be one of the most tragic in the MCU. Not only do fans realize that Marc lost his brother and blames himself, but his mother not only blamed him, she berated him for the same. Furthermore. she took out the anger she felt over Randall’s death on Marc – because of which Steven Grant came into being, essentially protecting Marc during his childhood as well as making him realize as an adult that he was never to blame. Watching this episode was hard on a lot of people because of the immensely human characters and the fact that this could have happened to anybody.

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