- Books, Literature, and Writing»
- Comics & Graphic Novels»
Three Superheros With Powers Greater Than That of Superman
Who are these superheroes?
Stronger than a locomotive! Faster than a speeding bullet! Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound! It's a bird! It's a plane! No it's Superman! When Joe Schuster and Jerry Siegel created Superman as we all know him, their comic book superhero did not have the power of flight yet. First appearing in Action Comics #1 in 1938, Superman as he presently appears in his famous red, yellow and blue costume, only had super strength and super speed. As the years went on, Superman's powers increased to include x-ray vision, super hearing, and super breath, among others. There was just one problem with Superman's powers: they all have their basis in the energy of the earth's sun. Looking at it another way, if Superman were to leave the Milky Way and be in a region where there are no G-stars for some inexplicable reason, well, then he would just be another ordinary schmuck like Clark Kent. What can possibly be a greater source of superpowers than our little G-star? Why magic, of course.
3. Stardust (Fox Comics, 1939)
Stardust was created by Fletcher Hanks for “Fantastic Comics”, debuting in the first issue. Portrayed as a blond-haired man wearing a silver bodysuit, he possesses an extraordinary amount of interplanetary science, along with superhuman strength, the power of flight, and is basically invulnerable. Often called a “Super Wizard” due to his knowledge, Stardust possesses many magical abilities. Stardust can emit rays that will slow down and stop a moving object, such as a bullet. He also has ESP, can change the appearance of people into things or animals, has super-vision, and can change himself into an actual star although one of human size.
Stardust is an alien from another planet (some Fantastic Comics stories say a star, not planet) who views the events of war unfolding on earth through his crime-detector which he has in an observatory on his home planet or star. Stardust decides to travel to earth to put an end to crime on our planet. Stardust appeared in sixteen issues of Fantastic Comics between 1939 and 1941. AC Comics reprinted Fox Comics issues that Stardust originally appeared in. Later on, AC Comics came out with their own character named Stardust, a female superhero bearing no relation to the original Golden Age Stardust. Unfortunately, Stardust had a rather limited run in comic book history, but has regained some interest by webcomic artists who felt he was worth revisiting. Considering the sheer magnitude of his powers, maybe it was because Stardust could eliminate evil faster than most superheroes that resulted in his brief lifespan during the Golden Age of comics. Stardust is presently a public domain figure.
2. Thor (Marvel Comics, 1962)
Better known as the Norse deity of thunder, oak trees, strength, and protection, Thor Odinson is a superhero in Marvel Comics who possesses immense powers. Descended from his home of Asgard, Thor's hammer Mjolnir enables him with the powers that include flight, weather control, flight, speed, invulnerability, dimensional and time travel, electrical manipulation, among many others. Created by Jack Kirby, Larry Lieber and Stan Lee, Thor first appeared in the issue “Journey Into Mystery #83” in 1962, the Silver Age of comics. Thor is defender of the human race on earth and a member of superhero team affiliates that include Avengers, Warriors Three, and God Squad. Enemies that Thor has fought since the Silver Age include: Zarrko, Cobra, Grey Gargoyle, Surtur the Fire Demon, and many others. Thor remains one of the most popular Marvel Comics superheros, appearing monthly in a self-titled comic book.
1. Captain Marvel (Fawcett, 1940; DC, 1972)
Billy Batson is no ordinary orphan boy, for his destiny has been chosen by the most powerful wizard in the universe, Shazam. His origin story having more in common with the ancient rebirth stories often associated with the Greek mysteries (probably not accidental, since his powers are derived from the Greek deities with the exception of Solomon, a Hebrew king), Captain Marvel is a protector guardian who manifests into reality whenever his host Billy Batson utters the word “Shazam!” The name Shazam stands for: S-Solomon, H-Hercules, A-Atlas, Z-Zeus, A-Achilles, M-Mercury. Possessing the abilities each of these figures represents, Captain Marvel is the world's mightiest mortal. Superman obtains his powers not from his home planet of Krypton but rather the earth's sun – indeed, should Superman come in contact with a chunk of Kryptonite, his powers are drastically weakened. Superman is also susceptible to magic. Captain Marvel has some degree of vulnerability to magic greater than his but it is very rare when it does happen. Created by C. C. Beck and Bill Parker in 1940, Captain Marvel first appeared in Whiz Comics #2. Captain Marvel was also the very first superhero to make it to the silver screen, portrayed by the then-strongest man in America, actor Tom Tyler. Captain Marvel is now the property of DC comics and has appeared in: “The Power of Shazam!” series, “Justice Society of America”, and most recently, “New Thunderworld Adventure #1.”