For a comic book character to get popular, they needs to be charismatic, relatable and entertaining. This is a lot harder than you would think, especially after a character is handled by countless writers over the years.
Spider-Man is meant to be a cheeky wisecracker but, depending on whose handling his dialogue, he might come across as a mopey teenager. Batman is a dark broody vigilante but there are times where he comes across as callous and crazy (especially if Frank Miller is headlining the story).
Although every comic book character has been written badly at some point, there are a couple of superheroes and supervillains who've NEVER been done right. And we're not talking about Z-list baddies or heroes you've never heard of; we're talking about mainstream characters who have appeared in some of the most influential stories ever - and yet writers still can't figure out what to do with them.
Is Red Hood an antihero or a villain? Can Marvel stop changing Mary Jane Watson's personality every five minutes? And what the hell did DC Comics do to Wally West in recent years?
Even though these characters are known and respected, the creative teams behind them just can't do them justice.
In his early days, founding X-Men member, Warren Worthington III, aka Angel, was labelled as a Mary Sue. Even though X-Men like Nightcrawler, Wolverine, Cyclops, Jean Grey and Beast have tons of insecurities, the winged mutant seemed unrealistically perfect, to the point where he came across as boring.
Instead of making Warren's character a little darker, the creative team went to the other extreme and transformed him into the Horseman of Apocalypse, Death. Although he broke free of Apocalypse's influence, Warren, now calling himself Archangel, was left with a demonic look. Since his new appearance was a constant reminder of what Apocalypse put him through, he developed a relentless obsession with the malevolent demagogue.
Annoyingly, this change made Archangel MORE boring since all he talks about is how he's going to destroy the evil mutant. And what did Warren do when Apocalypse was finally killed? He still obsessed about Apocalypse.
This does Angel a disservice since there's a lot of interesting aspects about the character. He's one of the world's richest mutants, led his own superhero squad, dated Psylocke, joined a secret black ops team, and once believed he was a real angel. He shouldn't be identified purely by his relationship with his arch-nemesis.