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Who is Wilson Fisk, Marvel’s Kingpin

5 Minute Read
Feb 20 2024

Thanks to Hawkeye and Echo, fans can’t get enough of Vincent D’Onofrio’s Wilson Fisk in the MCU. But who is Marvel’s Kingpin?

Wilson Fisk’s character stole the show in the bloody, dramatic Netflix series Daredevil season 1. He also served as the animated main villain in Into the Spider-Verse and has a long-standing history as a Marvel villain you do not want to tango with. But who is he? And how did he rise to the top of New York’s criminal underworld?

Created by: Stan Lee & John Romita Sr.

First appearances of Kingpin Wilson Fisk: Amazing Spider-Man #50 (cameo appearance) & Amazing Spider-Man #51 (full introduction)

Powers & Abilities

Fisk was obsessed with bodybuilding as a child. After years of training, Kingpin exhibits peak human strength. He’s also a proficient martial artist, having studied abroad for many years.

Kingpin is also multilingual and self-taught. He prides himself on his intelligence and is exceptionally determined when accomplishing his goals.

Courtesy of Sony Entertainment

Who is Wilson Fisk?

In the comics, Kingpin’s early life wasn’t extremely detailed. He grew up poor, and his father was a drug addict. 

Wilson began training and bodybuilding at a young age, eventually studying the art of Japanese sumo. He also placed great value on intelligence, teaching himself anything he could by reading.

At just 15 years old, he was given the nickname “Kingpin of Crime”, merging gangs under his power. As he was quickly taking over the organized crime scene, Wilson had his first tangles with the superhero Spider-Man.


Fisk briefly stepped away from a life of crime when his wife, Vanessa, expressed a desire for him to leave it behind and help her raise their son. But in an attempt to lure him back into crime, one of his own enforcers kidnapped his wife Vanessa. And it worked.

Fisk has since served as a formidable opponent to some of Marvel’s biggest hero names. Panels have seen him tangle with Daredevil, the X-men, the Runaways, and Shang-Chi. After having her father murdered, Fisk adopted the young Maya Lopez, and the two worked together until she discovered his deceit.

Wilson Fisk in Netflix’s Daredevil

Long before the greater MCU was exploring the grey area between good and evil, Netflix viewers were falling in love with Vincent D’onofrio as Daredevil‘s Wilson Fisk. An intimidating and strong man, the character is also portrayed as vulnerable, traumatized, and deeply thoughtful. Due to his routines and mental processes, some viewers with Autism saw themselves reflected in the character as well.

Courtesy of Netflix

In the show, and presumably in the later Disney-owned MCU, Fisk is born to a loving mother and an aggressively criminal father. At a very young age, his father forced him to assault his bully, believing his son was ‘soft’ and that it would make Wilson strong.


Wilson’s father Bill was deep in debt to local crime families. Crushed under the pressure of his debts, he started drinking and beating Wilson’s mother. One night, Wilson grabbed a hammer and killed his father as he attacked Wilson’s mother. She helped him cover up the murder, figuring mobsters would be blamed.

Fisk inherited his father’s cufflinks, which he famously continued to wear in the show. According to the MCU wiki, the cufflinks are canon.

Marvel Kingpin

Courtesy of Marvel Studios

The Rise of Kingpin (Netflix)

As a young adult, Fisk moved to Asia and spent time abroad. He eventually returned to New York and began his mission to take control of the city’s crime scene.

In 2012 after the Battle of New York, Fisk saw his opportunity to rebuild the city. He founded Union Allied Construction, the company Matt Murdoch and his crew ended up investigating. 

Fisk’s calm and thoughtful demeanor was harshly contrasted by his outbursts of emotional violence. When this upsets the balance of crime organizations in New York,  this meticulous man starts to lose control.

Eventually, Fisk’s role in NYC’s organized crime imploded, and he landed in jail. But of course, the Kingpin of crime worked his way up to running the prison. While in prison, he meets Frank Castle, facilitating his escape in the hopes that the Punisher will take out the crime competition.

Eventually, Fisk cut a deal with the FBI in order to get himself out of prison. He was moved to a hotel to serve out his sentence as an informant. From there, he carefully played his cards in an attempt to regain his freedom, but he was foiled by Daredevil and taken back into custody.


Marvel’s Kingpin Joins the MCU Proper in Hawkeye

The holiday adventure Hawkeye brought D’Onofrio’s Wilson Fisk to the MCU officially. Unsurprisingly, he still doesn’t get along with the MCU’s Daredevil, who is also played by Charlie Cox.

This version of Kingpin is a major crime boss who is (reasonably) feared by Clint Barton. But the real tension comes from his relationship with Maya Lopez, who he has raised as his own daughter (after assassinating her dad.) At the end of of the holiday romp, Maya has found out how her father really died—so she puts a bullet into Fisk.

Wilson Fisk Returns in Echo

In the Echo series, Maya Lopez finds out here uncle Kingpin is still alive. He tracks her down and seeks her forgiveness, but when she refuses to come back into the fold, Fisk is displeased.

But when he takes her family as hostages, his plan goes awry. Maya is able to channel the powers of her ancestors, reaching into Fisk’s heart and forcing him to face his trauma. He escapes, but the series sets him up for his next big heist—all of New York City.

Wilson Fisk will likely be running for (or winning the title of) Mayor of the Big Apple. This will undoubtedly be an issue for Matt Murdoch if we ever get Daredevil: Born Again.



Author: Danni Danger
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