The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time Fictional Characters
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107  reranks 154,107 votes 9,336 voters 136,248 views more info

The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time

List Criteria: Only superhero protagonist characters from comics No villains or superhero teams.

List of the most badass, tough, and iconic comic book superheroes ever created. This list includes central characters from both the DC and Marvel Universe, as well as more non-traditional or underground comic books. The definition of what makes a "superhero" can be quite slippery, and often encompasses characters with questionable morals and behavior (giving rise to the notion of the "anti-hero.")

Traditionally, a "superhero" simply means a larger-than-life character, or one gifted with special abilities, either organically or via their own genius or inventiveness, who uses his or her powers to protect and defend the public from threats. Though the word "superhero" began to be used as early as the 1910s, the concept really took hold in the public's mind following the introduction of Superman in 1938.

Though Superman and other characters of his day were gifted with special talents and abilities, making them particularly suited to crusading for justice, many characters that followed were more "human" than the noble alien from Krypton, using their intelligence (such as Iron Man or Batman) to create a superheroic persona. A common trope has also become scientific accidents or twists of fate that turn a regular citizen into a superhero (as is the case with Spider-Man being bitten by a radioactive spider or Bruce Banner becoming The Hulk after being pelted with gamma rays.) Some superheroes also have disabilities that counteract their skills, weapons or unique talents. Of course, a number of superheroes are also not only not human, but god-like beings, such as Marvel's Thor.

Because of the massive popularity of superheroes – particularly at the start of the 21st Century, when superhero films reigned at the box office – a number of deconstructions and analyses of the genre have also been done, culminating in the creation of "meta-superheroes" who comment on the concept of superheroism itself. The Watchmen, a group modeled on classic superhero comics but representing the ways that vigilantism and consolidated power can go wrong, is a good example of this trend.

So take a look at this list, decide who your favorite comic book superheroes are, and vote them up.
List is ranked by a combination of each item's votes & positioning in reranks
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  1. 1
    Up 3601
    Down 1988

    the people's #1 & added by blackvulcan Bill Finger, Bob Kane, Bruce Timm

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  2. 2
    Up 2962
    Down 1881

    Stan Lee, Steve Ditko

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  3. 3
    Up 2788
    Down 1728

    Len Wein, Roy Thomas, John Romita, Sr.

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  4. 4
    Up 2949
    Down 2032

    Joe Shuster, Jerry Siegel

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  5. 5
    Up 2376
    Down 1643

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  6. 6
    Up 2465
    Down 1630

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee, Don Heck

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  7. 7
    Up 2337
    Down 1527

    Joe Simon, Jack Kirby

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  8. 8
    Up 2064
    Down 1492

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee, Larry Lieber

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  9. 9
    Up 1974
    Down 1499

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  10. 10
    Up 1527
    Down 1661

    often listed & ranked high on reranks William Moulton Marston, H. G. Peter

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  11. 11
    Up 1653
    Down 1608

    Bill Finger, Martin Nodell

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  12. 12
    Up 1468
    Down 1003

    ranked low on reranks Chris Claremont, Michael Golden

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  13. 13
    Up 1868
    Down 1591

    added by JesusPerez Rob Liefeld, Fabian Nicieza

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  14. 14
    Up 1160
    Down 1101

    added by Logan2011 Mort Weisinger, George Papp

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  15. 15
    Up 1509
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  16. 16
    Up 1454
    Down 1354

    Chris Claremont, Jim Lee, Mike Collins

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  17. 17
    Up 1219
    Down 1295

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  18. 18
    Up 1473
    Down 1264

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  19. 19
    Up 1231
    Down 1372

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Stan Lee, Bill Everett

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  20. 20
    Up 1327
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    Len Wein, Dave Cockrum

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  21. 21
    Up 1022
    Down 925

    Christy Marx, Len Wein, Dave Cockrum

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  22. 22
    Up 1051
    Down 884

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  23. 23
    Up 1102
    Down 1068

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  24. 24
    Up 988
    Down 844

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  25. 25
    Up 1077
    Down 949

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  26. 26
    Up 1173
    Down 1130

    added by RatedMMA John Romita, Sr., Ross Andru, Gerry Conway

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  27. 27
    Up 953
    Down 946

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  28. 28
    Up 1161
    Down 1104

    Dave Gibbons, Alan Moore

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  29. 29
    Up 1094
    Down 923

    Len Wein, Dave Cockrum

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  30. 30
    Up 982
    Down 887

    John Broome, Gil Kane

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  31. 31
    Up 880
    Down 783

    Mike Mignola

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  32. 32
    Up 783
    Down 820

    added by dayton72 C. C. Beck, Bill Parker

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  33. 33
    Up 917
    Down 865

    added by Logan2011 Stan Lee, Don Heck

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  34. 34
    Up 687
    Down 743

    Mort Weisinger, Kurt Busiek, Jackson Guice

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  35. 35
    Up 889
    Down 970

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  36. 36
    Up 767
    Down 740

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  37. 37
    Up 310
    Down 210

    ranked low on reranks & added by blackvulcan Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  38. 38
    Up 864
    Down 966

    Bill Finger, Bob Kane

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  39. 39
    Up 782
    Down 858

    added by cptron Stan Lee, Steve Ditko

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  40. 40
    Up 549
    Down 432

    ranked low on reranks Chris Claremont, Dave Cockrum

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  41. 41
    Up 762
    Down 834

    added by PawanBaadshah Joseph Samachson

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  42. 42
    Up 923
    Down 907

    added by Logan2011 Todd McFarlane

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  43. 43
    Up 487
    Down 422

    added by Logan2011

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  44. 44
    Up 695
    Down 793

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  45. 45
    Up 591
    Down 611

    Chris Claremont, John Byrne

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  46. 46
    Up 688
    Down 782

    added by Logan2011 Curt Swan

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  47. 47
    Up 648
    Down 546

    ranked low on reranks Stan Lee, Chris Claremont, Dave Cockrum

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  48. 48
    Up 333
    Down 323

    Chris Claremont, John Byrne

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  49. 49
    Up 334
    Down 332

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  50. 50
    Up 173
    Down 176

    added by blackvulcan Carmine Infantino, Robert Kanigher

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  51. 134 +

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