This week, Marvel released its latest edition of Spider-Gwen Annual #1, and the murderous super-villain known as M.O.D.A.A.K. (Mental Organism Designed As America’s King) may look strikingly familiar to political junkies.
The villain is clearly modeled after Donald Trump: he has Trump’s wrinkly orange visage (albeit on a physically huge head and balanced on tiny limbs) a hatred for “foreign filth” and an obsession with his small hands.
omfg donald trump is officially a marvel villain ???? pic.twitter.com/xUumSq48um
— بول (@sarcasticIwt) July 3, 2016
M.O.D.A.A.K. himself is a longtime enemy of Captain America, appearing frequently in Cap comics, though not as a presidential contender. In Spider-Gwen, an alternate universe comic where Peter Parker love interest Gwen Stacy is bitten by the radioactive spider instead of Peter, M.O.D.A.A.K. is facing off against Cap’s successor Samantha Wilson, a black, female Avenger charged with protecting Earth in the very distant future.
The metaphor is hard to miss, obviously. And M.O.D.A.A.K.’s end is remarkably easy to predict: He’s easily dispatched with Wilson’s characteristic Captain America sucker punch.
Marvel hasn’t commented on the similarities between the New York real estate investor and Captain America’s tiny-fingered foe, but the artist responsible, Jason Latour, is clearly no Trump fan, as you can tell by his Twitter feed.
Sometimes I stare at the ceiling & ponder what my job in Trump's detainment camp for Great American traitors will be? Hope I'm not on steaks
— Jason Latour (@jasonlatour) May 11, 2016
Headline: "Do you think Donald Trump is inciting violence with his supporters?". You are the NEWS. It is a FACT he is. Report it as such.
— Jason Latour (@jasonlatour) March 14, 2016
I've been called a bigot online twice tonight. For saying I don't like Trump. Welcome to the election cycle.
— Jason Latour (@jasonlatour) July 2, 2016
I do like being in Entertainment Weekly. But I'd rather live in a world where the butt of our joke didn't exist. https://t.co/JS9p0oSplO
— Jason Latour (@jasonlatour) July 1, 2016
But Latour isn’t the only Marvel employee with strong feelings about Donald Trump. Although Marvel Entertainment itself doesn’t make political contributions, its reclusive CEO, Isaac “Ike” Perlmutter does.
Perlmutter and his wife are friends with Trump and his wife Melania, according to their representative, and have given millions to Republican efforts, including a $2 million donation to Conservative Solutions PAC, a Marco Rubio-affiliated SuperPAC.
In January, when Donald Trump skipped a debate and announced that he was raising money for veterans groups instead, Ike Perlmutter and his wife were among Trump’s high-dollar donors. Trump even gave them a shout out from the stage in Iowa, calling Perlmutter, “One of the great, great men of our country in terms of business and talent.”
Perlmutter’s reported donation prompted a small boycott of Marvel products, which quickly died out. Perlmutter has not made overt statements of public support since.