The entire mission statement of Marvel comics all the way back to the first release of The Fantastic Four, was to give a slightly more grounded and realistic alternative to the more idealized superheroes of the esteemed competition. However, as the decades rolled on, more and more comics creators came along to ask what exactly it meant for superhero stories to be "realistic".
Some had the right idea about the whole thing, but some...really didn't. Especially at the House of Ideas.
Marvel is infamous for being downright brutal with its characters at times, making you wonder if the people writing them have it in for certain characters. From the bronze age of the eighties all the way up to now, Marvel has made some truly heinous creative choices with its world and characters that are as offensive as they are nonsensical.
From simply taking characters in directions readers would much rather they didn't, to outright subjecting them to horrific, graphic trials, these are the times when Marvel took their love for dark twists just a bit too far.
10. Turned Frank Castle Into Frankenstein'a Monster - Franken-Castle
Superhero secret identities are notoriously punny - this is nothing new. And while Frank Castle isn't really a play on anything like his earlier contemporaries, there came a time when they decided to capitalize on a pun that could be made out of his name. Thus, Franken-Castle was born. Dignity died shortly thereafter.
There have been many attempts to put The Punisher into a more fantastic setting so that they can keep writing him without having to, y'know, address the various problematic undertones of his entire character. Only one time has this actually worked - Cosmic Ghost Rider - while the other two times most certainly didn't. Franken-Castle was one of them.
This was Matt Fraction's attempt to reinvent The Punisher, having him be killed and then put back together again by a society of Moloids, turning him into a Frankenstein's monster. A "Franken-Castle" if you will.
Yeah... it lasted about one volume and was swiftly undone. Kinda shocked it even lasted that long, but Fraction's writing was juuuust good enough to hold up such an outlandish idea.
Cosmic Ghost Rider worked because of a lot of the caveats that came with the premise before broaching the same concept this comic does (CGR is an alternate Frank Castle, for one, and him being Ghost Rider works a lot better as a premise than this given his MANY sins), while this - though entertaining in a fun popcorn way - was just a dumb idea that fans, inevitably, did not warm to.