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The 5 Best M.O.D.O.K. Stories You Should Read
Marvel Comics Reading Recommendations

The 5 Best M.O.D.O.K. Stories You Should Read

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George Tarleton was once a man until A.I.M (Advance Idea Mechanics) used him for an experiment, turning him into M.O.D.O.K. Standing for “Mental Organism Designed Only for Killing”, the heinous M.O.D.O.K. has been a regular foe of Captain America, along with others such as Iron Man, Hulk, and Gwenpool.

Are you looking to read some comics featuring M.O.D.O.K.? Below are five of the best, which cover different heroes, tones, and genres. With tales ranging from action-packed to humourous, there’s a M.O.D.O.K. story for all kinds of readers.

Happy reading!

Tales of Suspense #94 cover by Jack Kirby.
Tales of Suspense #94 cover by Jack Kirby.

If This Be… Modok!

Written by Stan Lee. Art by Jack Kirby.

Up to this point, Captain America had fought the scientific criminal organisation A.I.M a few times in his publication history. However, with this encounter, they gained supreme leadership in the form of M.O.D.O.K. For two-thirds of the tale, the scientific mastermind is kept off-panel, spoken in hush tones by some and in contempt by other A.I.M agents.

M.O.D.O.K. lives up to the hype in the final third. Kirby gives the character a bombastic design – in a way that the legendary artist can – that mixes in grotesque elements. The script backs these elements up, making him a force to be reckoned with, possessing a heinous attitude towards life.

Issues: Tales of Suspense #92-94
Collected Edition: ‘Marvel Masterworks: Captain America Volume 2’ or ‘Captain America Epic Collection: Captain America Lives Again’ or ‘Penguin Classics Marvel Collection: Captain America‘ or ‘M.O.D.O.K.: Head Trips’
Buy: eBay | Amazon/Kindle

Captain America #133 cover by Marie Severin and Frank Giacoia.
Captain America #133 cover by Marie Severin and Frank Giacoia.

Madness in the Slums

Written by Stan Lee. Art by Gene Colan.

Captain America has always been a thorn in M.O.D.O.K.’s side. However, the mental organism is not content with defeating the hero – he wants to destroy his reputation too. To do this, A.I.M has deployed the Bulldozer Man to smash up the slums of Harlem, gaining the people’s support but only so he can use it against Captain America and Falcon when they oppose the destruction.

This tale shows the devious and plain evil side of M.O.D.O.K., who’s not afraid to weaponise the less fortunate for personal gain. While this is done through more fantastical methods, there’s a real-world parallel, with the villain using the same playbook as some right-wing politicians.

This issue also briefly delves into M.O.D.O.K.’s origin, something thart up until this point had only been hinted at.

Issues: Captain America #133
Collected Edition: ‘Marvel Masterworks: Captain America Volume 5’ or ‘Captain America Epic Collection: Bucky Reborn’ or ‘M.O.D.O.K.: Head Trips’
Buy: eBay | Amazon/Kindle

Super-Villain Team-Up/M.O.D.O.K.'s 11 #1 cover by Eric Powell.
Super-Villain Team-Up/M.O.D.O.K.’s 11 #1 cover by Eric Powell.

M.O.D.O.K.’s 11

Written by Fred Van Lente. Art by Francis Portela.

M.O.D.O.K.’s 11 is a superpowered heist caper. M.O.D.O.K. has assembled a crew of C-grade villains to capture an omnipotent device, intending to use it to create a new cosmic cube.

This humourous tale is full of double-crosses, triple-crosses, twists, and unexpected turns. M.O.D.O.K.’s 11 will keep you on your toes, switching things up just when you think you have things figured out. Check it out if you love a good heist.

Issues: Super-Villain Team-Up/M.O.D.O.K.’s 11 #1-5
Collected Edition: M.O.D.O.K.: Head Trips
Buy: eBay | Amazon/Kindle

M.O.D.O.K.: Head Games TPB cover by Cully Hamner.
M.O.D.O.K.: Head Games TPB cover by Cully Hamner.

Head Games

Written by Jordan Blum and Patton Oswalt. Art by Scott Hepburn.

M.O.D.O.K. is having visions of a long-lost family. Are they real? Or is it some elaborate programming? The mental organism goes on a quest to find out. On his journey, he’ll encounter A.I.M politics, supervillain weapon conventions, a team-up with Iron Man, the fourth-wall-breaking Gwenpool, and heaps more.

The character is usually portrayed as either sinister or goofy. However, Head Games has found a way for him to be sympathetic. You want to follow him on his quest for answers and feel bad for him through the visions the reader is privy to. But don’t worry, M.O.D.O.K. hasn’t gone soft. He’s still a force to be reckoned with and is out there to prove it.

Issues: M.O.D.O.K.: Head Games #1-4
Collected Edition: M.O.D.O.K.: Head Games
Buy: eBay | Amazon/Kindle

Incredible Hulk #288 cover by Al Milgrom.
Incredible Hulk #288 cover by Al Milgrom.

Loose Ends

Written by Bill Mantlo. Art by Sal Buscema, Chic Stone, Jim Mooney, Joe Sinnott, and Carlos Garzon.

While M.O.D.O.K. has primarily been a foe of Captain America, he’s also had run-ins with the Incredible Hulk. Loose Ends sees the mental organism in conflict with A.I.M, with a rebellion within the organisation threatening his leadership. This motivates him to manipulate Hulk villain Abomination to recapture his dominance.

M.O.D.O.K. is diabolical in this story, showing no mercy, remorse, or empathy towards a broken Abomination. He’s only interested in his personal goals and willing to screw over others to reach them. These qualities make for a villain you love to hate, to the point that you’ll feel sorry for the other villains involved.

Issues: Incredible Hulk #287-290
Collected Edition: M.O.D.O.K.: Head Trips
Buy: eBay | Amazon/Kindle

Have your say!

Have you read any of the above M.O.D.O.K. stories? Share your thoughts in the comments below or let us know on Facebook, Twitter, or Mastodon.

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Comments (2)

  • Why throw politics into this? If you want to do that then bring up the Biden Crime family hijinks that’s going on so they can pocket millions. Modok reminds me of the Chicom balloons that are allowed to monitor us. Please stay away from politics. These articles should be a “safe place” to give us a rest from such topics.

    • Mate, you’re going to be disappointed if you read Captain America #133. It’s a political comic about housing, poverty, and how rhetoric can influence the less fortunate. It’s also a very early appearance of Falcon, which was at the time a political statement.

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