A cult Marvel hero may be getting a reboot in the MCU.
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier showrunner Malcolm Spellman says he wants to bring the cyborg warrior Deathlok to the screen but not the same character who appeared on Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD.
Who is Deathlok?
Debuting in 1974, Deathlok has gone through several interesting iterations.
Originally, Luther Manning was a soldier killed in battle in a post-apocalyptic future. His body was used to become a cybernetic soldier who wanders this wasteland. Deathlok eventually found himself thrust back into modern times, where he clashed with several heroes before finally being destroyed.
The second Deathlok was Michael Collins, a scientist forced into this cyborg body by a sinister corporation. The intriguing idea was that Collins was a pacifist fighting the programming to do violence. He used his abilities for good before he discovered a way to revert to his human body and vanishing.
A new Deathlok was Henry Hayes, a mild-mannered doctor who had no idea he was transformed into a cyborg assassin sent to eliminate targets and then revert to his normal form with no memory of his crimes.
In a conflict, SHIELD agent Jemma Simmons was infected by a techno-organic virus that turned her into a version of Deathlok (although she doesn’t use the name). She could control it much better than previous versions to use the technology to aid the team.
In all the versions, the common theme was the battle between the man and the machine with Deathlok trying to keep his humanity despite being built for war.
Deathlok in the MCU
While speaking to Heroic Hollywood on what MCU hero he would want to tackle next, Spellman replied, “My favorite character, the character I would most love to do next, would be Deathlok. But it would have to be right.”
It was pointed out to Spellman that Deathlok already existed in the MCU. Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD’s first episode featured Mike Peterson (J. August Richards), who received enhanced strength from the Extremis drug.
Wanting to be a hero, Peterson was captured and experimented on by Hydra, who turned him into a cybernetic killer. He managed to fight off the programming to aid SHIELD in several missions. In the series’ 100th episode, Peterson showed up as a guest at Fitz and Simmons’ wedding and revealed he had purged the Deathlok additions from his body and was once more a normal human.
Spellman acknowledged this by pointing out it would be “a different Deathlok.” Given the various versions of the character established in the comics, moving to a new version wouldn’t be difficult.
Richards himself has stated he would enjoy playing the role again even if the last sight of the character was fully human and happy being out of the super-hero life.
With Marvel building a larger slate of original series, Deathlok would fit in well and fit the comic book character to continue evolving on the small screen.
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