Quantumania actor Corey Stoll says his version of MODOK has been changed from the comic by necessity , even if that upsets fans.
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania has finally hit theaters, and it is causing a lot of division among fans. While some say it is still a good time, others say that the special effects are awful and that the story has lost its Ant-Man charm. According to CBR, they are also specifically complaining about Quantumania version of MODOK, to which the actor who plays him responds: “Everybody’s trying to make this jump from a two-dimensional, static image on page to live action, and some things have to change.”
There are two reasons why fans aren’t happy about Quantumania’s MODOK (which stands for “Mechanized Organism Designed Only for Killing,” F.Y.I.). The first is that the character looks really odd, and a lot different than he does in the Marvel comic books. Basically, it is an inflated version of actor Corey Stoll’s head floating around in what looks like a gold helmet with tiny arms and legs.
Stoll defended this Quantumania characterization of MODOK by reminding critics that, in comic books especially, there is usually more than one version of most characters. He cites Batman as a good example: in the comics as well as the movies, there are multiple different versions of Batman. This doesn’t make one of them better or worse than the others, it just makes them different. He also says that “you don’t have to like everyone equally.”
Also, it is important to point out that, even putting aside the fact that Quantumania had to share its special effects budget with Black Panther 2, it is often difficult to turn a 2-D comic book character into a 3-D movie character played by a human actor. The character would have looked different no matter how they decided to make MODOK.
The second reason why fans are a bit miffed over Quantumania’s choices when it comes to MODOK is that his origin in the film is completely different than it is in the comics. In the comics, George Tarleton, an A.I.M. employee, is transformed into a big-headed killing machine.
In Quantumania, MODOK is created after Darren Cross, the CEO of Pym Technologies in the first Ant-Man film, is shrunken down so much that he seemingly disappeared, thanks to Ant-Man breaking his Yellowjacket suit. This is ret-conned in Quantumania, where it is told that he instead became disfigured and went to the Quantum Realm, where Kang the Conqueror turned him into MODOK.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter if fans liked Quantumania’s portrayal of MODOK or not, though, because it is highly unlikely that he will show up in the MCU again. After having a change of heart, he (spoiler alert) gets injured by Kang and dies, leaving him out of consideration for future Marvel movies.
That being said, Stoll admitted that he would be “game” to return if there is ever another opportunity to play MODOK in the future, because he would love to “bring smiles to people’s faces” with the character again.