The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time Fictional Characters
Ultimate List
108  reranks 156,551 votes 9,427 voters 138,597 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
  • 108 ReRanks
    • Women
    • Men
    • Age
    • Region
  • See list ranked by
</> Rerank List
Score
  1. 1
    Up 3636
    Down 2020

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

    open report item
  2. 2
    Up 2995
    Down 1918

    Stan Lee, Steve Ditko

    open report item
  3. 3
    Up 2985
    Down 2064

    Joe Shuster, Jerry Siegel

    open report item
  4. 4
    Up 2812
    Down 1768

    Len Wein, Roy Thomas, John Romita, Sr.

    open report item
  5. 5
    Up 2394
    Down 1679

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

    open report item
  6. 6
    Up 2487
    Down 1665

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee, Don Heck

    open report item
  7. 7
    Up 2359
    Down 1560

    Joe Simon, Jack Kirby

    open report item
  8. 8
    Up 2000
    Down 1528

    open report item
  9. 9
    Up 2085
    Down 1527

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee, Larry Lieber

    open report item
  10. 10
    Up 1551
    Down 1689

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

    open report item
  11. 11
    Up 1501
    Down 1022

    Chris Claremont, Michael Golden

    open report item
  12. 12
    Up 1676
    Down 1639

    Bill Finger, Martin Nodell

    open report item
  13. 13
    Up 1886
    Down 1623

    added by JesusPerez Rob Liefeld, Fabian Nicieza

    open report item
  14. 14
    Up 1176
    Down 1133

    added by Logan2011 Mort Weisinger, George Papp

    open report item
  15. 15
    Up 1531
    Down 1440

    open report item
  16. 16
    Up 1488
    Down 1278

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

    open report item
  17. 17
    Up 1469
    Down 1373

    Chris Claremont, Jim Lee, Mike Collins

    open report item
  18. 18
    Up 1233
    Down 1307

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

    open report item
  19. 19
    Up 1343
    Down 1370

    Len Wein, Dave Cockrum

    open report item
  20. 20
    Up 1246
    Down 1386

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

    open report item
  21. 21
    Up 1036
    Down 935

    Christy Marx, Len Wein, Dave Cockrum

    open report item
  22. 22
    Up 1060
    Down 898

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

    open report item
  23. 23
    Up 1118
    Down 1078

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

    open report item
  24. 24
    Up 1001
    Down 854

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

    open report item
  25. 25
    Up 1092
    Down 957

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

    open report item
  26. 26
    Up 1189
    Down 1136

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

    open report item
  27. 27
    Up 962
    Down 957

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

    open report item
  28. 28
    Up 1110
    Down 932

    Len Wein, Dave Cockrum

    open report item
  29. 29
    Up 1167
    Down 1119

    Dave Gibbons, Alan Moore

    open report item
  30. 30
    Up 997
    Down 893

    John Broome, Gil Kane

    open report item
  31. 31
    Up 702
    Down 751

    often listed Mort Weisinger, Kurt Busiek, Jackson Guice

    open report item
  32. 32
    Up 799
    Down 826

    added by dayton72 C. C. Beck, Bill Parker

    open report item
  33. 33
    Up 889
    Down 794

    Mike Mignola

    open report item
  34. 34
    Up 930
    Down 873

    added by Logan2011 Stan Lee, Don Heck

    open report item
  35. 35
    Up 324
    Down 219

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

    open report item
  36. 36
    Up 904
    Down 979

    open report item
  37. 37
    Up 780
    Down 750

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

    open report item
  38. 38
    Up 874
    Down 975

    Bill Finger, Bob Kane

    open report item
  39. 39
    Up 791
    Down 868

    added by cptron Stan Lee, Steve Ditko

    open report item
  40. 40
    Up 560
    Down 441

    ranked low on reranks Chris Claremont, Dave Cockrum

    open report item
  41. 41
    Up 776
    Down 842

    added by PawanBaadshah Joseph Samachson

    open report item
  42. 42
    Up 934
    Down 914

    added by Logan2011 Todd McFarlane

    open report item
  43. 43
    Up 499
    Down 429

    added by Logan2011

    open report item
  44. 44
    Up 709
    Down 799

    open report item
  45. 45
    Up 599
    Down 625

    Chris Claremont, John Byrne

    open report item
  46. 46
    Up 702
    Down 789

    added by Logan2011 Curt Swan

    open report item
  47. 47
    Up 661
    Down 555

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

    open report item
  48. 48
    Up 349
    Down 330

    Chris Claremont, John Byrne

    open report item
  49. 49
    Up 186
    Down 183

    added by blackvulcan Carmine Infantino, Robert Kanigher

    open report item
  50. 50
    Up 347
    Down 341

    Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

    open report item
  51. 134 +

    Something missing? Add it!

Is this list missing something?
RANKERS WHO ADDED ITEMS + 47 MORE

items 1 - 50 of 133

think you can do better?

Rerank This List
why?

got a blog or website?

embed this list
why?

viewers of this list also saw

more popular lists