Martial Artists in Real Life vs the Comics

Ever disappointed anyone by telling them that practicing martial arts is NOT twirling nunchucks, doing backflips, headbutting wooden blocks or breaking bones? (At least it isn’t 99% of the time.) Don’t blame them – DC and Marvel have been lying to them their whole lives.  Here are some useful clarifications based on an article of the 15 best martial artists in the Marvel Universe.

15. Hawkeye
Yes, we use weapons that require aim.
No, we don’t use any weapons that are laced with explosives or electromagnetic pulses.

14. Echo
Yes, we sometimes do train vigorously and sometimes even in “exclusive academy” like environments.
No, we don’t have backstories like growing up in a criminal family and learning martial arts to avenge our dead fathers.

13. Moon Knight
Yes, it usually is helpful to have moves that are unpredictable (preferably not due to mental instability like Moon Knight).
No, our strength does not depend on the lunar cycle or any other external phenomena (though some of us are supernaturally motivated by chocolate and muffin/coffee combos).

12. X-23
Yes, sometimes looking like a young woman may lead to getting underestimated as a threat.
No, we are not indoctrinated to become perfect killing machines. …At least, not in the sense of what happens to X-23.

11. Batroc
Yes, Savate is a form of kickboxing that some of us have probably tried.
No, we still wouldn’t win against Captain America.

10. Gamora
Yes, we can definitely favor bladed weapons! And we often are good friends with people we fight with.
No, we don’t have a “near-limitless skill set” and our friends aren’t usually from other dimensions.

9. Black Panther
Yes, we often train with other martial artists and learn from each other.
No, we usually aren’t the masters of most forms of African martial arts – because that includes an entire continent.

8. Elektra
Yes, we have great teachers that guide us toward the light.
No, we don’t wear skin-tight red costumes!

7. Wolverine
Yes, knowledge of pressure points is useful.
No, we don’t have retractable claws (though we wish we did).

6. The Cat
Yes, we can be morally ambiguous and be both ‘bad guys’ and ‘good guys.’
No, none of us would win empty-handed against anyone “armed to the teeth with swords and firearms.”

5. Karnak
Yes, living at a monastery could possibly train our minds and bodies.
No, we wouldn’t be able to just ‘sense’ someone’s physical, emotional and spiritual weaknesses. Maybe after some years of friendship, stolen medical records and a degree in psychology?

4. Taskmaster
Yes, some of us go through the process of becoming instructors and passing on skills/knowledge.
No, there isn’t any such thing as a “photographic reflex” where we are able to pick up fighting skills just by watching.

3. Captain America
Yes, some of us know BJJ, Judo and Kung Fu. Some of us have even trained in all of them!
No, we’re not physically enhanced by the government. Also, we’re not usually as attractive as Chris Evans.

2. Iron Fist
Yes, delivery of a solid punch is a core skill.
No, we did not gain that skill by killing a dragon and plunging our hands into its molten heart.

1. Shang Chi
Yes, a dedicated lifetime study of empty handed fighting can make a person pretty formidable.
No, we don’t dodge bullets. That’s Neo.


(Reproduced under fair use and with credit)

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