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The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time 

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
Updated September 18, 2019 1.8M votes 118.4k voters 1M views 311 items

List Rules Only superhero protagonist characters from comics. No villains or superhero teams (of course there is often a fine line between hero and villain).

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.") If you love these superheroes, you'll also be interested to know that a few of them have really lame origin stories.

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.  Some superheroes also have disabilities that counteract their skills, weapons or unique talents. 

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. So take a look at this list, decide who your favorite comic book superheroes are, and vote them up. We have your top 50 superheroes, your top 100 superheroes of all time… we don’t quite have your top 200 comic book characters of all time simply because this list is just for the best superheroes ever. We didn’t include the super villains on this top comic book characters list. Who are the top comic book heroes? Who is the best superhero? Let’s put these question to rest of who is the best super heroes to rest.

list ordered by
1
Spider-Man is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Stan Lee, Steve Ditko

Appears In: Daredevil vs. Spider-Man, Spider-Man, The Amazing Spider-Man, Spider-Man 3, Spider-Man 2, + more

Powers & Abilities: Precognition, Healing factor, Superhuman speed, Hand-to-hand combat, Superhuman strength, + more

Spider-Man is a fictional superhero created by writer-editor Stan Lee and writer-artist Steve Ditko. He first appeared in the anthology comic book Amazing Fantasy #15 (August 1962) in the Silver ...more

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2
Batman is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
blackvulcan added Bill Finger, Bob Kane, Bruce Timm

Appears In: Batman Beyond, Young Justice, Batman, Batman: The Animated Series, Justice League Unlimited, + more

Powers & Abilities: Flight, Martial arts, Eidetic memory

Batman is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics, as well as its associated media. The character was created by artist Bob Kane and writer Bill Finger, ...more

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3
Deadpool is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
JesusPerez added Rob Liefeld, Fabian Nicieza

Appears In: Deadpool, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Hulk Vs, Marvel Universe

Powers & Abilities: Martial arts, Healing factor, Immortality, Superhuman strength, Teleportation

Deadpool is a fictional antihero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by writer Fabian Nicieza and artist Rob Liefeld, the character first appeared in The New ...more

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4
Iron Man is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Jack Kirby, Stan Lee, Don Heck

Appears In: Iron Man: Armored Adventures, The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, The Super Hero Squad Show, The Incredible Hulk, Ultimate Avengers, + more

Powers & Abilities: Flight, Hand-to-hand combat, Superhuman strength, Energy blast, Compliance professional, + more

Iron Man is a fictional superhero appearing in comic books and the Marvel Cinematic Universe. A wealthy American business magnate, playboy, and ingenious scientist, Anthony Edward ...more

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5
Thor is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Jack Kirby, Stan Lee, Larry Lieber

Appears In: Thor: The Dark World, The Incredible Hulk Returns, Thor, Hulk Vs, Thor: Tales of Asgard, + more

Powers & Abilities: Flight, Superhuman strength

Thor is a fictional superhero that appears in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character, based on the Norse mythological deity of the same name, is the Asgardian god of ...more

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6
Captain America is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Joe Simon, Jack Kirby

Appears In: The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, Ultimate Avengers, Captain America, Ultimate Avengers 2, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, + more

Powers & Abilities: Martial arts, Hand-to-hand combat

Captain America is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by cartoonists Joe Simon and Jack Kirby, the character first appeared in Captain ...more
7
Wolverine is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Len Wein, Roy Thomas, John Romita

Appears In: X-Men: First Class, Superhero Movie, Hulk Vs, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, X-Men: Days of Future Past, + more

Powers & Abilities: Healing factor, Regeneration

Logan is a fictional character from the X-Men series. He is a mutant who possesses animal-keen senses, enhanced physical capabilities, powerful regenerative ability known as a healing factor, ...more

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8
Doctor Strange is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Arthur Williams added Stan Lee, Steve Ditko

Appears In: Dr. Strange, Doctor Strange: The Sorcerer Supreme, Marvel Universe

Powers & Abilities: Flight, Magic in Harry Potter, Martial arts, Telepathy

Doctor Stephen Vincent Strange, best known under his alias Doctor Strange, is a fictional superhero that appears in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. A former neurosurgeon, ...more

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9
Flash is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time

Appears In: Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths, Daddy Day Care, DC Universe

Powers & Abilities: Flight, Superhuman speed

The Flash is a fictional superhero who appears in American comic books published by DC Comics. Created by writer Gardner Fox and artist Harry Lampert, the original Flash first appeared in Flash ...more
10
Black Panther is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

Appears In: The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, Black Panther, Ultimate Avengers 2, Marvel Universe

Black Panther is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character was created by writer-editor Stan Lee and writer-artist Jack Kirby, first ...more

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11
Hulk is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

Appears In: The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, Ultimate Avengers 2, Hulk Vs, Ultimate Avengers, Planet Hulk, + more

Powers & Abilities: Shapeshifting, Healing factor, Superhuman speed, Superhuman strength, Reality warping

The Hulk is a fictional superhero that appears in comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character was created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, and first appeared in The Incredible Hulk #1. ...more

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12
Wonder Woman is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
William Moulton Marston, H. G. Peter

Appears In: Justice League Unlimited, Wonder Woman, Batman vs. Superman, Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths, Justice League: Doom, + more

Powers & Abilities: Flight, Regeneration, Superhuman speed, Hand-to-hand combat, Superhuman strength, + more

Wonder Woman is a fictional superhero who appears in comic books published by DC Comics. The character is a warrior princess of the Amazons and is known in her homeland as Princess Diana of ...more

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13
Venom is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Todd McFarlane, David Michelinie, Mike Zeck

Appears In: Marvel Universe

Powers & Abilities: Shapeshifting, Healing factor, Superhuman speed

Venom, or the Venom Symbiote, is a fictional antihero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics, commonly in association with Spider-Man. Venom was originally a supervillain ...more

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14
Punisher is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
RatedMMA added John Romita, Sr., Ross Andru

Appears In: Punisher: War Zone, The Punisher, Iron Man: Rise of Technovore, The Punisher, The Punisher: Dirty Laundry, + more

The Punisher (Francis "Frank" Castle, born Castiglione) is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character was created by writer Gerry ...more

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15
Superman is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Joe Shuster, Jerry Siegel

Appears In: Smallville, Superboy, Adventures of Superman, Justice League Unlimited, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, + more

Powers & Abilities: Flight, Healing factor, Eidetic memory, Superhuman speed, Superhuman strength, + more

Superman is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics, as well as its associated media. Superman is widely considered an American cultural icon. The Superman ...more
16
Black Widow is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Stan Lee, Don Heck, Don Rico

Appears In: Ultimate Avengers, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, The Avengers, Ultimate Avengers 2, Iron Man 2, + more

Natalia Alianovna Romanova is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by editor and plotter Stan Lee, scripter Don Rico, and artist Don Heck, ...more

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17
Nightwing is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time

Appears In: Batman: Under the Red Hood

Nightwing is a fictional character in the 2010 animated action thriller film Batman: Under the Red Hood.

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18
Groot is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Bellwoodbomb611 added Jack Kirby, Dick Ayers, Stan Lee

Appears In: Guardians of the Galaxy

Groot is a fictional superhero that appears in comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, and Dick Ayers, the character first appeared in Tales to Astonish #13. An ...more

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19
Star-Lord is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
DouglasMckeever added Timothy Zahn, Steve Englehart, Chris Claremont

Appears In: Guardians of the Galaxy

Star-Lord is a fictional superhero appearing in comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by Steve Englehart and Steve Gan, the character first appeared in Marvel Preview #4. The son of a ...more

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20
Silver Surfer is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

Appears In: Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, Marvel Universe

Powers & Abilities: Flight

The Silver Surfer is a fictional superhero appearing in comic books and other publications produced by Marvel Comics. The character also appears in a number of movies, television, and video game ...more

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21
Scarlet Witch is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

Appears In: The Avengers: Age of Ultron, Marvel Universe

Powers & Abilities: Reality warping

Wanda Maximoff is a fictional character, whose code name is Scarlet Witch, in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

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22
Rocket Raccoon is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Sal Buscema, Bill Mantlo, Terry Austin

Appears In: Marvel Universe

Rocket Raccoon is a fictional superhero who appears in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by writer Bill Mantlo and artist Keith Giffen, the character first appeared in ...more
23
Aquaman is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Mort Weisinger, Kurt Busiek, Jackson Guice

Appears In: Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths, Aquaman, The Cast of the Angler, DC Universe

Powers & Abilities: Telepathy, Healing factor, Superhuman speed, Empathy, Underwater breathing

Aquaman is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Created by Paul Norris and Mort Weisinger, the character debuted in More Fun Comics #73. Initially a ...more

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24
Johnny Blaze is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Roy Thomas, Gary Friedrich, Mike Ploog

Appears In: Ghost Rider, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, Marvel Universe

Powers & Abilities: Superhuman strength

Ghost Rider is a fictional superhero that appears in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Johnny Blaze is the second Marvel character to use the name Ghost Rider, following the ...more
25
Jean Grey is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Comic Book Superheroes of All Time
Jack Kirby, Stan Lee

Appears In: X-Men: The Last Stand, X-Men, X2, Marvel Universe, Earth-11052

Powers & Abilities: Extrasensory perception, Flight, Psychokinesis, Telepathy, Eidetic memory, + more

Jean Grey, or Jean Grey-Summers, is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics and is a founding member of the X-Men. Jean Grey has been known under the ...more

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