Superhero Shows 10 Most Frustrating Deus Ex Machina
Super hero and the villains possess incredible powers and abilities that help make their fantastical stories possible. What these characters can do separates them from their readers and fans. TV shows adapt the adventures of these comic book heroes for the small screen, but filling dozens of hours of television every year can be tricky.
Superhero television shows particularly resort to the use of deus ex machinas of storytelling, often recurring plot devices or elements that arrive just in time to save a character from an otherwise impossibly difficult situation. Some of the most popular superhero TV shows feature various versions of a deus ex machina, Smallville at The boysand even She-Hulk: Lawyer. Thanks to their sudden, almost “easy” nature, deus ex machinas can easily frustrate fans.
10/10 She-Hulk breaks the fourth wall to his advantage
For the majority of She-Hulk: LawyerThe first season of She-Hulk aka Jen Walters often broke the fourth wall to communicate with viewers, providing additional context or amusing observations on the current scene, such as highlighting the immediate chemistry she shared with Matt Murdock. .
Nothing about these interactions broke the series until the season finale. She-Hulk Popped On The Disney+ Home Screen, Found The Real One She-Hulk screenwriters and eventually rewrote his own finale. Breaking the fourth wall can be fun, but She-Hulk Used It To Completely Control The Direction Of The Show. As a unique event, it was shocking and funny. Hopefully she doesn’t retain that level of control in future seasons.
9/10 Superman’s powers are divine
Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman
Superman was not the star of Lois & Clark despite the show’s subtitle, The New Adventures of Superman. The series focused on the growing rivalry, partnership, and romantic relationship of Lois Lane and Clark Kent.
Lois and Clark were central to the show, but Superman still saved the day in most episodes, using powers reminiscent of his comic book counterpart Silver Age. Superman in Lois & Clark was completely overpowered, only weakened by kryptonite and the strange magical enchantment. Ironically, Superman and his unlimited power was a recurring deus ex machina.
8/10 Jor-El and Kryptonian technology save Clark Kent
Smallville beautifully blended early 2000s teen drama and superhero action. While much of the beginning seasons focused on Clark Kent and Lex Luthor and their personal relationships, Krypton, and the looming presence of Jor-El grew every year.
Clark Kent, new to his powers and his Kryptonian heritage, often found himself in impossible situations where his incredible powers weren’t enough. Luckily, there was always some type of Kryptonian or MacGuffin device that Clark used to save the day or find what he was looking for. It was an interesting plot device that the writers were quick to abuse.
7/10 Batman and Robin have a gadget for everything
Many people inside and outside the comic book community know that Batman is a hero who is practically prepared for almost any situation. Preparations for Batman have become a meme in pop culture. Whether it’s Superman or Darkseid, Batman usually has something in his utility belt to take them down.
This perception of Batman started in 1966 Batman Television series starring Adam West and Burt Ward. The Dynamic Duo really had a gimmick for every occasion. Batman used ballistic shields, smoke pellets, a million tools in the Batmobile, and Bat-shark repellant spray, of course.
6/10 Barry Allen uses the speed force
The first season of the flash was unbelievable. Barry Allen slowly learned to use his incredible superspeed while Harrison Wells, the season’s secret villain, orchestrated events from the shadows as the Reverse Flash. The Speed Force gives all speedsters their powers, allowing them to run fast and even time travel.
The Speed Force is essentially a piece of the universe, so its true power is immeasurable, allowing writers to take full advantage of it as a deus ex machina plot device. Whenever Barry or Team Flash are in a traffic jam, Cisco or Jay Garrick usually come up with a plan to use the Speed Force in some new and unexplained way.
5/10 Compound V gives everyone superpowers
The boys Television series offered a refreshing take on superheroes. batman v superman explored the social impact of Superman existing on Earth, and The boys took this concept to a whole new level. In The boyssuper-powered individuals are celebrities and ambassadors.
The group of rebels battling superheroes is way over their heads, but thankfully Compound V exists. Compound V is a formula used to empower people. Whenever writers need a new hero or need their heroes to survive, Compound V can give anyone superpowers. As Syndrome once said, “When everyone’s great, no one will be.”
4/10 Legends use time travel for everything
Legends of Tomorrow
Almost all the main characters of Legends of tomorrow comes from a previous CW superhero series. Constantine starred in his own short-lived series, Firestorm’s origin was explored on the flashand Sara Lance, aka White Canary, one of the team leaders, played leading roles in Arrow. The Legends use a ship called the Waverider to travel through time.
The Legends spend most of their time traveling through time itself and while the time travel gadget is nice to look at, it acts like a massive deus ex machina. If a hero or villain disrupts the timeline, Legends can simply use their own time machine to set things right.
3/10 Madame Web helped Spider-Man with cosmic powers
Spider-Man: The Animated Series
the anime Madame Web first appeared in Spider Man‘s third season with warnings of the future. Madame Web guided Spider-Man through many trials as he battled the Green Goblin and Carnage for the first time. Madame Web was one of the most mysterious characters in the series until the last episodes.
Madame Web, like the Beyonder, was a being from another dimension with incredible cosmic powers. She tested Peter Parker in hopes that he would save the multiverse. While Web was a nice addition to the series, she often gave Peter information about the future and teleported him away from trouble.
2/10 Peter Petrelli and Sylar have all the powers
Hero featured an ensemble cast of a dozen incredible characters, but two of the most interesting characters in the show’s first season were Peter Petrelli and Sylar, the main protagonist and antagonist, respectively. As Peter slowly discovered what his true power was, Sylar accrued more powers with each victim.
Their clash, both in the present and in the possible dark future, was epic, but as the two accumulated greater stores of power, they themselves became deus ex machinas. Peter and Sylar could use just about every other power in the series, and the characters got quite powerful.
1/10 Legion Of Doom’s Hall Of Doom Can Do It All
Super Friends Challenge
Bad guys also need deus ex machinas. The Legion of Doom, with villains like Lex LuthorScarecrow, Cheetah, and more were the main antagonists in each Super Friends Challenge episode, and the writers had to write scenarios allowing the Legion to escape the Superfriends at the end of each episode.
The Hall of Doom was the Legion’s base, and the high-tech facility allowed the Legion to accomplish just about anything, from flight to space travel to time travel. The Hall of Doom was the ultimate deus ex machina plot device that helped Legion escape and ensured their return week after week.