Popular Super Heroes
By Editorial Staff
Contributed by Info Guru Terri Wallace
They have extraordinary powers and a strong desire to protect the public.
They fight crime and defend the common man. They are super heroes. These archetypal characters are more than the stuff of summer movie blockbusters; super heroes remind us that sometimes one person is all that stands between calm and chaos. Here are some of most popular super heroes that help keep evil at bay.
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After witnessing his parents’ murder, young Bruce Wayne swears to fight crime and pursue justice. Fortunately, young Bruce has the bucks to bankroll his lofty pledge. With billions at his disposal, Bruce builds the Batcave, the Batmobile, and lots of other “Bat Bling” with which to battle the criminal element of Gotham City.
Actually an anti-hero, Wolverine is a class of superhero that is a broody, anti-authoritarian loner. He drinks and smokes too much, but he is wicked smart and is another one of those “bad boy” superheroes. Wolverine, born James Howlett and commonly known as “Logan,” is a mutant with animal-keen senses, superhuman physical capabilities and an accelerated healing rate that also slows down his aging process. Oh, and he has claws. Really long claws.
Superman is more than a catchy R.E.M. song that gets stuck in your head. It is also the alter-ego of Clark Kent. According to superhero lore, Superman was born Kal-El on the planet Krypton, but was sent to earth by his scientist father Jor-El, via a rocketship, just before the destruction of Krypton. Fortunately, a Kansas farmer and his wife found the infant hero and raised him as Clark Kent, whom they taught to be a moral and upright defender of humanity. When not saving the world, Clark moonlights as a reporter for the Daily Planet.
7. Spider Man
What child hasn’t pondered a spider scurrying across the floor and wondered, just for a moment, if that spider might be radioactive and able to convey the superhuman powers you need in order to escape from the mundane life in which you are trapped. Perhaps one bite is all it would take to transform you into the agile web-slinger of lore, but you never find out because you instinctively annihilate the arachnid into a smeary stain on the bottom of your shoe.
Of course, you could pretend that you’re just a little bit like Spiderman. Maybe just donning a pair of Spiderman socks or a t-shirt imprinted with the classic design will start you on your way towards eight-legged fame?
After the mild mannered physicist Bruce Banner is caught in the blast of a gamma bomb while saving a teenager named Rick Jones who has driven onto the testing field, Banner is subject to involuntary transformation into the Hulk during times of emotional stress. The Hulk is amazingly strong, incredibly angry, and unflatteringly green. However, the Hulk’s alter-ego, Bruce Banner, lives in a constant state of panic that the monster inside him will erupt and hurt someone—much like his abusive father hurt his mother. (Yes, it looks like we have another wounded, sensitive bad-boy with a heart of gold!)
5. Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Buffy Summers is more than a buff, blonde bimbo. Buffy is gifted with mad slaying skills, a strong sense of duty. With her supernatural strength, speed, stamina, agility, reflexes, and rapid healing, Buffy has many of the stock skills of the classic superhero; however, her enhanced intuition and prophetic dreams offer her wisdom to balance her physical abilities.
4. Harry Potter
Magical abilities and bravery to spare earn Harry Potter a spot in the superhero canon. His desire to protect others, even at his own expense, and his fierce loyalty to his friends also earn him a place in the hearts of millions of readers. He is more than The Chosen One, or The Boy Who Lived … he is The Boy that Make Children Love Reading Again. Yes, definitely a hero!
3. Iron Man
Tony Stark is wealthy, mind-blowingly smart, and more than a little cocky—an intellectual “bad boy.” But this womanizing industrialist, who made his billions by designing military weaponry, is injured during a kidnapping and suffers from a broken heart—literally. While captive, he crafts a powered suit of armor to facilitate his escape. Afterwards, Stark uses the armor to protect the world and woo women. (Come on, who can resist a man in a suit?)
Sure, Galdalf doesn’t sport a skin-tight costume emblazoned with a giant “G” (thank goodness!) but he does have uncommon powers, he does swoop in to save the day, and he does combat threats to humanity while helping those less fortunately. This makes him a superhero in our book, and the Lord of the Rings books, too!
1. The Doctor
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Okay, so the Doctor doesn’t technically have superpowers, per se. But he does have a TARDIS that allows him to travel through time and space, and he has a sonic screwdriver. The Doctor has also has saved the universe from untold disaster and (depending on which regeneration you are partial to) he has been known to sport a stylish stalk of celery, a striped scarf, a leather jacket, smarty glasses, or a bowtie … and, well, bowties are cool.
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