Character Issues: The Vision

Vision Crying

The Stats:
Name: The Vision
Height: 6’3
Weight: 300 lbs
Powers: Mass Manipulation, Solar Energy Blasts, Super Strength, Flight, Computer Brain
Type: Glass Cannon (Martian Manhunter sub-type)
Excels at: OP’ed Melodrama
Fails at: Living up to his potential

The Character:

The Vision we know was a Silver Age remix of a Golden Age Character from the Timely Comics Era.

Like so many of the Avengers, Vision started life as a villain. Vision’s history reads like a soap opera written by a group of very talented meth addicts.    He was built by Ultron using the body of the Original Human Torch and the brain patterns of Hulk level punching bag, Wonder Man.  He was a Synthezoid, a type of android in the Marvel Universe.   For a while, Synthezoids were something that Marvel was desperately trying to make happen and consequently, there were tons of them. For a period in the 70’s and 80’s, Ultron was cranking out at least one new Synthezoid every month.  Most of them have either been killed outright or Put On A Bus.

Vision is the heart of the team because he is a sympathetic character who is learning about humanity.  The readers are drawn to him because his story is familiar.   His mix of powers and abilities makes him one of the most formidable members of the Avengers instead…

The Issues:

Vision is trash because getting stomped out by every…single…team-busting villain is his status quo.  His default state was offline, damaged or injured. For a character that can become intangible at will, villains find little difficulty in putting hands on him.

Magneto Owns Vision

Now, I know Magneto is near the top of the food chain in terms of beings in the Marvel Universe…but on paper…so is Vision. In addition to being a glass cannon, Vision is ineffective because he is rarely a deciding factor in any major conflict.  His presence never tips the scales to assist The Avengers.   Furthermore, he can even be a burden to his teammates.  Ultron and Kang seem to hack him and use him (effectively) against his teammates at will.  All of Vision’s flaws are underscored by the fact that he is kind of a basketcase.

Vision Crying

Marvel really tried to give us a android character who was discovering his humanity.  What we received was an android character who was locked in a permanent existential crisis.  Most recently, Vision built himself a family….without getting into too many current spoilers, this has gone as poorly as we expected it to.

The Fix:

It’s time to wipe Vision’s brain (again).  Considering how poorly using an existing person’s brain as template for an android typically goes (see Ultron), perhaps it’s time to toss that on the “bad ideas pile” right next to Gamma Ray Experimentation, trying to change the past and having something Thanos wants.   Maybe instead forcing him into a romantic relationship to establish his humanity, the writers need to spend more time on him being a Synthezoid and slowly develop his character.

Additionally, emphasize the idea that Vision’s brain is like a human brain, therefore he is learning to manage his emotions.  They need to ditch the relationship with the Scarlet Witch.  Marvel doesn’t have a clear idea what to do with her character and it’s a drag for every character she is linked with.   If the plan is for him to keep his daughter, Viv, they need to focus on developing their relationship.  Vision could help her cope with the recent series of tragedies that happened in Vision’s solo series while teaching her to be a better hero during her time with The Champions.


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One thought on “Character Issues: The Vision

  1. Oh no! Just when I was loving your podcasts, you go and dis’ one of my favorite characters. But, I do like your idea of a brain wipe and a reboot of his personality. I’d love to see him used more effectively. 😉

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