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Off My Mind: Why are so Many Villains Doctors?

Do they all go to the same school of villainy?

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Besides wanting to take over the world, there's one thing that many supervillains have in common: a doctorate. For some reason there are several villains with the title of doctor in front of their name. What is the connection between them? It's possible some of them have actual degrees but others are a little more questionable. Was it their intentions to become a doctor? Did something go wrong that turned them against the profession and towards the idea of world domination? Is the idea of paying for medical school simply too much for these promising physicians?

Not all doctors in comics are evil but you would be surprised how many pop up if you did a simple search with doctor or dr. using our search menu. Let's look at some of the more common evil doctors and try to determine if they are actual doctors.

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Doctor Doom

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Victor Von Doom was a brilliant college student until he blew up his face trying to reach his mother's spirit in Hell. He was born a gypsy and his mother was a sorceress. His father was a healer so perhaps little Victor had plans to follow in his father's footsteps.

When the Dean of Science at State University found him and offered him a scholarship, Doom was busy making inventions rather than trying to heal others. There didn't seem to be any desire to help others.

After getting kicked out of the university, he journeyed to Tibet to learn the forbidden secrets of black magic and sorcery. Once his new armor was complete, he simply proclaimed himself a doctor.

Is he an actual doctor? No.

Doctor Octopus

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Otto Octavius had a different upbringing than Doom. He grew up the son of an abusive factory worker father. Seeing the importance of an education, Otto quickly dived right into his studies (which resulted in more bullying from his classmates).

Continuing his hard work and studies, Otto was awarded a scholarship, focused on science, worked at an engineering firm and later became a nuclear physicist.

When a lab accident caused his mechanical arm apparatus to become fused to his body and caused his brain to be damaged, Doctor Octopus was born.

Is he a real doctor? Yes.

Doctor Hurt

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The story of Simon Hurt is a complex one. Complex as in the accuracy of facts can be called into question. Working with the Gotham City Police Department and the Pentagon, a psychiatrist by the name of Simon Hurt was put in charge of a program to create replacement Batmen. When an isolation experiment required Batman to spend 10 days under Hurt's care, the seeds of future trouble for Batman were put in place.

Doctor Hurt would later turn up, trigger a post-hypnotic phrase that would make Bruce Wayne lose his memory and go a little crazy. Hurt even tried to tell the world he was actually Thomas Wayne, Bruce Wayne's father.

Is he an actual doctor? Maybe. It's possible he was an actual psychiatrist.

Doctor Bong

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As a child, Lester Verde was also bullied (looks like this is another common link between many evil doctors). Despite the abuse he received, Lester always came up with witty comebacks to his tormentors. He became a journalist, lost his hand while performing in a punk band and then decided to become a villain named Doctor Bong.

After some crazy schemes, Doctor Bong gave up his evil ways and earned a PhD in psychology. Doctor Bong even tried to treat Deadpool.

Bong's turn to helping others didn't last long as he went back to the crazy schemes.

Is he a real doctor? Yes.

There are so many other evil doctors out there. Others that come to mind are Doctor Sivana, Doctor Hugo Strange, Doctor Demonicus, Doctor Light, Doctor Polaris, Doctor Horrible, Doctor Robotnik, Doctor Mindbender and so on. Some of them are actual doctors and others are just evil. Just looking at the few above, many have had some sort of traumatic childhood, often filled with bullying and abuse.

Why do you think so many doctors become evil? Who is your favorite evil doctor?