How real PMPs would fight superheroes


February 23, 2023

Photo: ElegantSolution/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty ImagesAnt-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania hit theaters this past weekend so pest management professionals (PMPs) were asked how they would handle superheroes named after pests.

In an article in humor site Cracked, PMPs were asked about heroes and villains featured in the Marvel universe that are named after pests. Here’s what they answered to how they would handle these superhero pests:


Billy Bretherton, star of A&E’s Billy the Exterminator and owner of Vexcon Animal and Pest Control in Louisiana: In the industry, we like to use oil against spiders because their webs can’t stick to it. Spiders do terrible in oil, and I think that would work with Spider-Man too. So I’d lure him into a trap covered in oil, maybe at the top of a building or something, then he’d crash-land in the middle of the street. That should definitely kill him.

Photo: ElegantSolution/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty ImagesMark Goban Jr. of ABC Pest Control in Florida: I’d use a pyrethrin against Spider-Man, just like we’d do for a spider. Pyrethrins are all-natural — they come from chrysanthemum flowers — but they’re a nervous-system inhibitor for spiders, so that might inhibit his Spidey sense, which would make him easier to kill. We’d need a lot of it, though.

The Wasp

Jay Lee, owner of Pirate Pest Control in New Mexico: If the Wasp were shrunken down, a good shoe would do the trick, or maybe a vacuum cleaner.

Mike Janus of ABC Pest Control in Florida: I’d say an electric flyswatter might work.


Photo: ElegantSolution/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty ImagesBretherton: “She’s kind of easy because she’s so trusting, and so, I’d sneak up behind her with a pair of gardening shears and cut off those antennae. They’re the source of her strength so cutting them off will help to take her down.”

Lee: “Mantises are very beneficial creatures. I know that Mantis in The Guardians of the Galaxy movies is an alien, not a mantis, but she’s still cool, much like real mantises are. I wouldn’t want to hurt her. I’d want to take her to a safe environment far away from where I’d be spraying. “

Black Widow

Goban: I mean, she’s just a regular woman — I don’t think we should advise on how to kill a human.

Photo: ElegantSolution/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty ImagesAnt-Man (Ant-Sized)

Bretherton: Glue boards are pretty good against ants, so I’d get tiny Ant-Man and his ants stuck on a glue board.

Janus: I’d use that cordyceps fungus from The Last of Us. That’s a real thing that turns ants into zombies. If you used it against Ant-Man’s ants, he couldn’t control them anymore, which would make him much easier to take down.

Ant-Man (65 Feet Tall)

Bretherton: If Ant-Man was big, I’d go for the Achilles’ heel.

Lee: If it was giant Ant-Man, I don’t think I’d take that job. It’s a little bit out of my service range.

Do you think you could take on these heroes and villians or would you tackle them differently? Let us know in the comments or at

Image Credits: ElegantSolution/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty Images


About the Author

Ellen Wagner is a former digital editor for PMP magazine.

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