The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time Fictional Characters
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107  reranks 153,659 votes 9,323 voters 136,041 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 3591
    Down 1985

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

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  2. 2
    Up 2953
    Down 1881

    Stan Lee, Steve Ditko

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  3. 3
    Up 2784
    Down 1724

    Len Wein, Roy Thomas, John Romita, Sr.

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  4. 4
    Up 2944
    Down 2027

    Joe Shuster, Jerry Siegel

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  5. 5
    Up 2371
    Down 1638

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  6. 6
    Up 2460
    Down 1626

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee, Don Heck

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  7. 7
    Up 2331
    Down 1524

    Joe Simon, Jack Kirby

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  8. 8
    Up 2056
    Down 1491

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee, Larry Lieber

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  9. 9
    Up 1966
    Down 1497

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  10. 10
    Up 1522
    Down 1658

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

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  11. 11
    Up 1650
    Down 1602

    Bill Finger, Martin Nodell

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  12. 12
    Up 1466
    Down 1000

    ranked low on reranks Chris Claremont, Michael Golden

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  13. 13
    Up 1863
    Down 1589

    added by JesusPerez Rob Liefeld, Fabian Nicieza

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  14. 14
    Up 1155
    Down 1099

    added by Logan2011 Mort Weisinger, George Papp

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  15. 15
    Up 1505
    Down 1409

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  16. 16
    Up 1448
    Down 1354

    Chris Claremont, Jim Lee, Mike Collins

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  17. 17
    Up 1215
    Down 1294

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  18. 18
    Up 1468
    Down 1263

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  19. 19
    Up 1229
    Down 1369

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

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  20. 20
    Up 1322
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    Len Wein, Dave Cockrum

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  21. 21
    Up 1050
    Down 880

    ranked low on reranks Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  22. 22
    Up 1019
    Down 923

    Christy Marx, Len Wein, Dave Cockrum

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  23. 23
    Up 1099
    Down 1066

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  24. 24
    Up 984
    Down 843

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  25. 25
    Up 1075
    Down 947

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  26. 26
    Up 1172
    Down 1127

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

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  27. 27
    Up 952
    Down 943

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  28. 28
    Up 1093
    Down 920

    Len Wein, Dave Cockrum

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  29. 29
    Up 1157
    Down 1103

    Dave Gibbons, Alan Moore

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  30. 30
    Up 981
    Down 884

    John Broome, Gil Kane

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  31. 31
    Up 879
    Down 780

    Mike Mignola

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  32. 32
    Up 781
    Down 818

    added by dayton72 C. C. Beck, Bill Parker

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  33. 33
    Up 914
    Down 864

    added by Logan2011 Stan Lee, Don Heck

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  34. 34
    Up 684
    Down 742

    Mort Weisinger, Kurt Busiek, Jackson Guice

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  35. 35
    Up 887
    Down 967

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  36. 36
    Up 765
    Down 738

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  37. 37
    Up 308
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    ranked low on reranks & added by blackvulcan Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  38. 38
    Up 862
    Down 963

    Bill Finger, Bob Kane

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  39. 39
    Up 780
    Down 856

    added by cptron Stan Lee, Steve Ditko

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  40. 40
    Up 545
    Down 431

    ranked low on reranks Chris Claremont, Dave Cockrum

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  41. 41
    Up 761
    Down 831

    added by PawanBaadshah Joseph Samachson

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  42. 42
    Up 923
    Down 902

    added by Logan2011 Todd McFarlane

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  43. 43
    Up 484
    Down 420

    added by Logan2011

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  44. 44
    Up 694
    Down 790

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  45. 45
    Up 589
    Down 609

    Chris Claremont, John Byrne

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  46. 46
    Up 686
    Down 780

    added by Logan2011 Curt Swan

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  47. 47
    Up 646
    Down 544

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

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  48. 48
    Up 331
    Down 320

    Chris Claremont, John Byrne

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  49. 49
    Up 333
    Down 329

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

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  50. 50
    Up 171
    Down 174

    added by blackvulcan Carmine Infantino, Robert Kanigher

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