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10 Villains That Conor McGregor Could Play in the MCU


10 Villains That Conor McGregor Could Play in the MCU


UFC Champion and mixed martial artist Conor McGregor certainly made an impression on audiences who tuned in to Prime Video’s remake of Road House. From director Doug Liman and starring Jake Gyllenhaal, McGregor stole the show as the film’s primary villain, Knox. Since the film’s release, there has been a lot of attention to McGregor getting more movie work, and many fans want to see McGregor joining the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

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This certainly makes a lot of sense, as despite some recent misfires, The Marvel Cinematic Universe is still the biggest franchise in the world, with their films and streaming series dominating social media conversation and still drawing in a large audience. McGregor has a certain energy that would make him great to play a Marvel villain.

While the MCU has already adapted many of their iconic villains like Thanos, Red Skull, and Ronan the Accuser, there are still plenty of untapped villains that need to be cast. Here are ten Marvel villains McGregor would be great for.

10 Juggernaut

Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby

Debut: X-Men #12 (July 1965)

The X-Men are set to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and one of their most iconic foes is Juggernaut. Cain Marko is actually the stepbrother of Charles Xavier/Professor X. He is actually a regular human empowered by a gem belonging to the deity Cyttorak that gives him super strength and durability and is almost unstoppable. He is one of the strongest characters in the Marvel Universe and a villain whose powers can allow him to go head-to-head with the likes of The Hulk or Thor.

An Unstoppable Force

While Juggernaut does not need a physically big actor, as to get the proportions right, one would need to do CGI like in Deadpool 2; Juggernaut does have an attitude that McGregor could easily pull off. He is brash and headstrong, someone who gives off the presence of being unstoppable.

It also makes Juggernaut scarier if he was already tough before getting his powers, as now they are enhanced to an unstoppable degree. Juggernaut is certainly a character who will need some love and attention in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and McGregor could fit the role easily.

Related: X-Men: 20 Mutants Who Must be on the Team in the MCU Reboot

9 Devos the Destroyer

Created by Tom DeFalco, Paul Ryan, and Danny Bulanadi

Debut: Fantastic Four #359 (December, 1991)

Devos the Destroyer is in many ways an intergalactic Punisher but to a greater extreme. He is an alien cyborg who acts as an intergalactic vigilante dedicated to bringing peace to the universe. He does so in his own warped, twisted view that the only way he can achieve this is by destroying anyone whom he deems a threat to galactic peace, therefore putting a good portion of the galaxy in his crossfire.

An Intergalactic Threat

Devos first appeared in The Fantastic Four, and while the film is heavily drawing from the 1960s era of the comics, putting a character that originated in the 1990s as a foe for the team would be an interesting exercise in adaptation.

His status as an intergalactic villain could also make him a potential threat for whatever form a new Guardians of the Galaxy team takes, or a foe for Captain Marvel or the Eternals. Since he is not a major Marvel villain, casting McGregor in the role would elevate the character and also give the mixed martial arts the chance to bring his skill set to a cosmic set story.

8 Bushwacker

Created by Ann Nocenti and Rick Leonardi

Debut: Daredevil #248 (November 1987)

Bushwacker, real name Carl Burbank, was a priest who lost his faith following a drug-related death of young members of his parish. After joining the C.I.A. he was outfitted with a cybernetic arm and became an assassin, drawing himself into conflicts with Daredevil, Wolverine and The Punisher. He can transform his hand into a sword or gun and is also skilled at hand-to-hand combat.

McGregor vs Daredevil

McGregor’s skills as a martial artist would serve well for the character of Bushwacker, particularly as he can turn his arms into swords for hand-to-hand combat. There is no doubt fans would want to see someone of McGregor’s skill set used in an action scene with either Daredevil or The Punisher in either Daredevil: Born Again or a Punisher spin-off. Also, the nature of range weapons for his character would allow McGregor not to rely so much on stunts and instead on physical presence.

7 Ares

Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby

Debut: Thor #129 (June 1966)

Ares is Marvel’s spin on the Greek God of War, just as Thor is their take on the popular Norse god. Ares might be considered more of an anti-hero, but he was originally introduced as a villain for both Thor and his half-brother Hercules. He also served as a member of Norman Osborn’s Dark Avengers, a team of supervillains posing as heroes.

While he did so under the impression he could use his powers for good, Ares’s history with villains in the Marvel Universe and overall status being associated with war means when he shows up in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, he will likely be a villain.

Ares’ Foundation Has Been Laid

Thor: Love and Thunder already introduced the Greek Gods to the Marvel Universe, with Russell Crowe as Zeus and the film’s mid-credit scene showcasing Brett Goldstein as Hercules. While the status of Thor 5 is up in the air, and it is unclear when Hercules will reappear in the MCU and battle Thor as the film mid-credit scene teased, the films now have a chance to introduce Ares as another Greek god and one that could force Thor and Hercules to unite.

Casting a mixed martial artist as a god of war would be an inspired casting, and fans would certainly want to see an action scene with McGregor fighting both Chris Hemsworth and Brett Goldstein.

6 Titanium Man

Created by Stan Lee and Don Heck

Debut: Tales of Suspense #68 (September 1965)

There have been many different people who take up the mantle of Titanium Man in the comics, but what they all have in common is they tend to be Russian, wearing a piece of high-tech armor similar to Iron Man. He is one of Iron Man’s most popular villains, but he is one that the movies have never gotten around to. Despite Tony Stark being dead within the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Titanium Man now has the perfect opportunity to enter.

Armor Wars

Marvel Studios is still developing Armor Wars, a film centered on War Machine (Don Cheadle) as he looks to protect his fallen friend, Tony Stark’s, legacy, as Stark tech has fallen into the wrong hands. With Stark tech more widely available, Armor Wars could see War Machine facing off against his own armored enemy in the form of Titanium Man.

The filmmakers could change the character from Russian to Irish to match McGregor’s nationality, give McGregor a role that focuses less on his martial arts training, and allow him to do something different by wearing an armored suit. McGregor might be a mixed martial artist, but that shouldn’t box him only doing one type of role.

5 Terrax

Created by Marv Wolfman and John Byrne

Debut: Fantastic Four #211 (Oct. 1979)

While The Silver Surfer is the most famous member of the Galactus Herald, he is far from the only one. Terrax is the second most famous, even serving as Galactus’s main head in the animated series Avengers: Earth Mightiest Heroes. He has the ability to control the earth around him and is typically seen wielding a massive ax.

He has fought The Fantastic Four and The Avengers, and his status as a heart of Galactus makes him one of the strongest characters in Marvel.

A Cosmic Threat

With the casting of Julia Garner as a version of the Silver Surfer and all but confirmed that Galactus will be the primary villain of The Fantastic Four, it seems like only a matter of time before Terrax will appear. Be it in that film or in another MCU cosmic entry, Terrax would provide major heavy hitters in the Marvel space set stories and even fill the role left by Ronin the Accuser from Marvel Comics.

McGregor certainly has the presence to bring Terrax to life, and it would be great to imagine a cosmic villain as a heavy bruiser that will take on the heroes face to face.

4 Sabretooth

Created by Chris Claremont and John Byrne

Debut: Iron Fist #14 (August 1977)

Originally introduced as a human villain for Iron Fist, Sabretooth quickly became repurposed as a mutant and an archenemy of the X-Men Wolverine. Little is known about Victor Creed’s past, except he was in the same Weapon X program as Wolverine and is one of the most violent and deadly killers in the Marvel Universe. He also has deep ties to the Brotherhood of Mutants and, along with the mutant Mystique, is the father of the mutant-hating human, Garyson Creed.

A Fierce Fighter for Marvel’s Fiercest Villain

We’ve already discussed why McGregor would make a great Sabretooth in a previous article. Suffice it to say that with the X-Men soon set to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe, there is no doubt that Sabretooth will be one of the first villains cast to join the franchise. McGregor’s history as a mixed martial artist matches previous Sabretooth actor Tyler Mane. McGregor’s viciousness and quickness in the ring would make for a thrilling take on Sabretooth and one that could easily face off against Wolverine.

3 Black Tom Cassidy

Created by Chris Claremont and Dave Cockrum

Debut: Cameo in Uncanny X-Men #99 (June 1976)/First Full Appearancein Uncanny X-Men #101 (Sept. 1976)

We’ve already suggested McGregor play Juggernaut; how about his frequent partner in crime, Black Tom Cassidy? The cousin of X-Men member Banshee and uncle to Siryn, Tom Cassidy’s powers originally were to generate blasts of heat through a wooden medium, but eventually grew to include control and manipulation of all manner of plant life. He is a career criminal and a frequent foe in the X-Men’s side.

An Irish Villain

It certainly makes sense to cast McGregor as one of Marvel’s most famous Irish villains. It is also an interesting change as Black Tom Cassidy’s powers are not physical, but he has elemental plant powers, so it would be a chance for McGregor to showcase more of his skills as an actor and less a body being used to fill out a suit. A version of the character appeared in Deadpool 2 but was drastically different from his comic counterpart, something the MCU could remedy.

Related: 10 Great Comic Book Villains the MCU Wasted (And What They Could’ve Done Better)

2 Kraven the Hunter

Created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko

Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #15 (August 1964)

Kraven the Hunter is one of the most famous villains in Spider-Man’s rogues gallery. Sergei Nikolaevich Kravinoff is a renowned big-game hunter whose goal in life is to beat Spider-Man to prove himself as the world’s greatest hunter. Kraven the Hunter often has a code of honor, but is still one of the deadliest villains in the Marvel Universe. While Kraven the Hunter might be getting his own film soon, the MCU needs a proper version of the character, and this is a role McGregor would be well suited for.

A True Kraven

Aaron Taylor-Johnson is set to play Kraven the Hunter in Sony’s Spider-Man Universe, but following the box office of Madame Web and Morbius, it feels unlikely this Kraven will ever join the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The only way Kraven the Hunter can appear in the MCU is through a Spider-Man movie co-produced by Sony.

If Sony’s Kraven the Hunter disappoints at the box office, they might try another go at the character in an MCU Spider-Man film and would need to recast it in a role that McGregor would be perfect for. Nobody would have a hard time believing him as the legendary hunter, and one audience would buy being able to fight Spider-Man on his own.

1 Cul the Serpent

Created by Stuart Immonen and Matt Fraction

Debut: Fear Itself #1 (June 2011)

Culthe Serpent is the Norse God of Fear and the brother of Odin, making him the uncle of Thor, Loki, and Hela (much of Cul’s backstory in the comics was given to Hela for the MCU). Cull was the lead villain in the 2011 event comic Fear Itself, and it revealed that Cu was Odin’s secret brother who was hidden away by Odin at the bottom of the Earth’s ocean. He sends his own hammers across the globe to corrupt heroes and turns them into his minions, similar to Apocalypse’s horseman. Cul is an Avengers-level villain.

A Major Step Up for McGregor

Cul the Serpent is an underrated Marvel villain, one that the MCU could use to fill the hole left by Kang the Conqueror following the firing of Jonathan Majors. Cul’s connections to Asgard make him a great foe to help reunite Thor and Loki, while also being a threat that would draw various Avengers together.

With rumors of the Serpent Society being cut from Captain America: Brave New World, they could be reworked to be the minions and disciples of this ancient Norse deity and help summon him. It would certainly be a much bigger role for McGregor than a lot of the villains on here, needing to hold his own as a screen presence as much as a stunt performer, but following Road House, it seems McGregor could pull it off and would be a terrifying villain for the Avengers.

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