Marvel’s Unbeatable Squirrel Couldn’t Defeat Watcher Villain
The following contains spoilers for Fantastic Four #43, out now from Marvel Comics
While the Marvel Universe has many groundbreaking powers on its roster, some of the most exciting stories focus on these heroes with more down-to-earth abilities. These heroes always face galactic monsters or universal threats, but this allows them to overcome these challenges and establish themselves as a kind of unique hero.
But sometimes that’s not enough, as in The Fantastic Four #43 (by Dan Slott, Rachael Stott, Andrea Di Vito, Jesus Aburtov, and VC’s Joe Caramagna) where it turns out that even the unbeatable Squirrel Girl can’t convince the Cormorant to back down in its attack on the universe .
“The Reckoning War” was a cataclysmic event for Marvel heroes, who struggled to come to terms with the chaos caused by the ancient force known as the Reckoning. The agent of the mysterious Helmsman, the Cormorant decimated the Fantastic Four when he confronted them in The Fantastic Four #25 by Dan Slott and RB Silva.
The Cormorant possesses a level of power that allows him to deal with reality warpers like Franklin Richards (their fight even costing him the last of his powers). Their agents have proven capable of defending themselves against the Thing and other powerful heroes. This even extended to Doreen Green, aka Squirrel Girl, who earned a reputation as Marvel’s most unbeatable hero.
Squirrel Girl was introduced in marvel superheroes #8 by Will Murray and Steve Ditko. Despite her seemingly basic power set, she proved crucial in defeating Doctor Doom. When she came back from obscurity to be part of Dan Slott and Paul Pelletier GLA miniseries, the creatives leaned into his unlikely defeat of Doom by having him achieve more unlikely victories. Squirrel Girl even found a way to defeat Thanos off-panel. When she had her own series, The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl by Ryan North and Erica Henderson, Squirrel Girl’s seemingly unstoppable status became a major aspect of the character. While she may not be able to outmatch her foes, the new series codified the idea that she could overcome any challenge through her wits or (more likely) friendly demeanor, transforming many enemies into friends.
But she finally seems to have found an adversary whom she has failed to convince to fire. As the War of Judgment sweeps across the Marvel Universe, Cormorant has made his way across Earth, salvaging pieces of his armor that had ended up in other people’s hands. This includes the Great Lake Avengers, where Grasshopper used the lower half of the armor to aid in combat. Among the GLA members who failed to stop the Cormorant and ended up shot in a crater is Squirrel Girl. While she seemed to have done the best of her allies, she still struggled to stay conscious as the alien casually noted that no one was “unbeatable” in front of him.
It’s a pinpoint moment, and it gains an extra layer when you consider that it was Slott himself who helped put Squirrel Girl back in the limelight by making her more or less invincible. But even Squirrel Girl seems unable to defeat or reason with the Cormorant, emphasizing how powerful and uncompromising he is. That leaves Doctor Doom with a victory that, ironically enough, feels more like a Squirrel Girl plan: an offer of friendship instead of Doctor Doom’s typical assault. So even though she was beaten, Squirrel Girl’s tactic was apparently the key to stopping the villain’s rampage, it just took someone of Doom’s power level to come up with the circumstance where it could work.
The Fantastic Four almost went to war with a cosmic empire – and would have won