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I do a lot of interviews with this blog between my Friend Files, Cosplay Confessions, and Eight Simple Questions features. One thing I haven’t really done is indulge in a bit of personal fun with an interview of my own. I mean, what’s the use of having my own blog if I can’t rant about my favorite foods, movies, etc? So with this post, I’m going to write about my top ten favorite DC Comics characters.
Now, to preface this, I have never been a massive DC Comics fan. Yes, they’re comics and feature superheroes – so I will read them, but to me, DC characters have always been less human and more like gods. With all of that said, there are a few characters I really like and still try to follow. Keep in mind that this list is likely to change some, here or there, but that most of these have been my favorites for a while now.
So, without further ado – here is my personal top ten list of my favorite DC Comics characters.
10. SWAMP THING
HISTORY AND POWERS: Swamp Thing first debuted in House Of Secrets #92 (July 1971) and was created by Len Wein and Berni Wrightson. The first incarnation of Swamp Thing was Alex Olsen, a scientist caught in a lab explosion caused by his rival, Damian Ridge. Since then, there have been many others, the most notable incarnation being Alec Holland, who was killed in an explosion as well. His consciousness melded with a plant elemental and Swamp Thing was born.
Swamp Thing is a pretty interesting character, and his powers are neat. He possesses superhuman strength and durability, telepathic control over plant life, the ability to grow new bodies out of plants, and finally – Swamp Thing, due to his body which is made from vegetation, has the ability to shape shift and possesses hyper-elasticity.
WHY I LOVE THE CHARACTER: Face it, Swamp Thing is really creepy and is reminiscent of a movie monster from the 1940’s. He lives in a swamp, is literally a monster, and is vastly different from many of DC’s mainstream heroes. Even though he’s a giant, walking plant – he’s more relatable than Superman. A combination of creepy and brawn, this character has always been one of my faves.
HISTORY AND POWERS: Lobo first appeared in Omega Men #3 (June 1983) and was created by Roger Slifer and Keith Giffen. Lobo is an alien and works as an interstellar bounty hunter. Originally, he was the last of his race – the Czarnians – because he violently killed all other members of his race.
Lobo’s powers seem to change with whomever is doing the writing for his books, but there are some powers he has which seem to be consistent. These include superhuman senses (he has a sense of smell that can sometimes track people through space), superhuman strength, durability, and stamina. Lobo also possesses a very high-functioning healing factor (and in some cases, clones spring from just a drop of his spilled blood) as well as immortality. Finally, Lobo seems to possess a genius-level intellect, though you wouldn’t know it to look at him.
In addition to his powers, Lobo also is very proficient with most combat weapons including firearms, frag grenades, and his personal favorite – a large chain with a gutting hook on the end that he keeps wrapped around one of his hands.
WHY I LOVE THE CHARACTER: Lobo has been one of my favorite DC characters since the early 1990’s when I read his miniseries, Unamerican Gladiators. Simon Bisley’s art was meant for Lobo. Lobo was originally meant as a send up of Wolverine and Punisher from Marvel. Still, like Marvel’s Deadpool (who was sort of a parody in his own right), Lobo ended up taking a life of his own and becoming super-popular. I love his attitude, his violent solutions to all his problems, his love of dolphins, and the humor of the book. I do have to say that I hate the New 52 version of Lobo. I hope eventually they bring The Main Man back.
08: WONDER WOMAN
HISTORY AND POWERS: Wonder Woman first appeared in All Star Comics #8 (December 1941) and was created by American psychologist William Moulton Marston. The goddess daughter of Queen Hippolyta and Zeus, Diana has taken on the title and responsibilities as the new God Of War, though in earlier incarnations she was formed out of clay from the shores of Themyscira by Hippolyta and granted life as well as unique abilities by the Greek deities.
Wonder Woman possesses many powers including superhuman strength, agility, endurance, and durability. She can also fly, has super breath, and is a highly-skilled hand-to-hand combatant. In addition to her main abilities, she also uses a Lasso of Truth, indestructible bracelets, a magic sword, and a weaponized tiara. Phew.
WHY I LOVE THE CHARACTER: One of the main reasons I like Wonder Woman is similar to one of the main reasons I like Thor from Marvel Comics; DC mined the mythology of an ancient culture to create a character, which I think is pretty neat. She has similar powers to Superman, but since her creation is rooted in the mythology of an actual culture here on Earth, Wonder Woman is much more relatable than Superman is since he’s an alien from another planet. On top of that, I think it’s sort of strange and cool that a psychologist created her character. She’s got this sort of history of bondage, feminist ideology, and brute force mixed up into one package. Wonder Woman is pretty easy on the eyes, as well.
HISTORY AND POWERS: Hawkman first debuted in Flash Comics #1 (January 1940) and was created by Gardner Fox and Dennis Neville. Carter Hall, an American archaeologist, is the reincarnation of the Egyptian Prince Khufu. When Carter touches an ancient Nth Metal dagger which killed Khufu, Carter regains the memories of his past life and uses them to create a harness also out of Nth Metal which gives him enhanced strength and the ability to defy gravity and attaches to it a set of wings.
Hawkman, mostly through the Nth Metal, has various abilities including enhanced strength, the ability to fly, a healing factor, and he is immune to the effects of weather and high altitude while wearing his gear. In addition to this, in some incarnations he has been shown to use a Thanagarian police space ship and use various sci-fi inspired weaponry, but he traditionally tends to use archaic weaponry like spears, maces, flails, swords, etc.
WHY I LOVE THE CHARACTER: Well – for starters, he’s such a weird character. He isn’t a superhero in the traditional sense, meaning his abilities aren’t over the top. He basically just harnessed an ancient technology and fights crime the old school way, using medieval weaponry. He’s a mish-mash of a bunch of different ideas, all rolled into one. Ancient Egyptian culture, alien planets, rare and wondrous metal, brute strength. Plus, I like the fact that he’s usually teamed up with Hawkgirl. He’s like Angel from X-Men – only better and more interesting.
HISTORY AND POWERS: Catwoman debuted in Batman #1 (Spring 1940) and was created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger. Selina Kyle is a former dominatrix who escaped the abusive tendencies of her former pimp, and then sought out fortune as a thief and burglar. Though she sometimes plays the role of villain, she is more often than not an antihero character who has an on/off romantic relationship with Batman.
While having no superpowers to speak of, Catwoman relies on mostly her whip and acrobatic skills. However, in a pinch she will use firearms and has also been known to have retractable metal claws in her boots and her gloves. In addition to these tactics, she often binds enemies and duct tapes their mouths shut, and she uses gasses and caltrops when trying to be stealthy or when she’s facing multiple opponents.
WHY I LOVE THE CHARACTER: Catwoman is the epitome of sexy. Admittedly, that’s why she’s always so high on my list. But, in addition to that, Catwoman is a pretty complicated character when you look at her. She’s gone through a lot of pain, she is always following her own path even if that sometimes means she’s a villain, and she isn’t overtly powerful. Again, I like human characters and Catwoman usually gives in to her vices and that’s about as human as you can get.
05: GREEN LANTERN
HISTORY AND POWERS: Green Lantern first debuted in All-American Comics #16 (July 1940) and was created by John Broome, Gil Kane, Bill Finger, and Martin Nodell. Alan Scott is given a magic ring which can create anything the ring-bearer can imagine or think of, and thus he becomes a member of the Green Lantern Corps – which is an intergalactic peace-keeping force. Many characters wear Lantern rings, and each one has their own unique story.
Through the use of willpower manifesting itself through the ring-wearer, each Green Lantern gains the ability to become almost invulnerable, can construct objects to attack or defend with (among other things), and can fly through space – immune to any outside influences like weather or oxygen, etc.
WHY I LOVE THE CHARACTER: I’ve always loved the Green Lanterns because I’m somewhat of a creative person myself, so to be able to manifest anything you can think of is very appealing to me. I know some people think the Lanterns are silly, but I enjoy them – especially with the way that DC has been focusing on the different kinds of Lantern Corps. out there.
HISTORY AND POWERS: Deathstroke first debuted in The New Teen Titans (Vol. 1) #2 (1980) and was created by Marv Wolfman and George Perez. Slade Wilson is a world-renowned mercenary after having served time in the military and undergoing an experiment to create super soldiers. His wife having shot him in the eye after endangering the life of their child, Joseph, Slade now goes by the name of Deathstroke and covers his eye to show the world that his hindered sight is, in fact, not a hindrance at all.
In his current incarnation, Deathstroke wears a suit entirely crafted of Nth Metal – which enables him to take extreme blows without too much damage. Also, the serum he was given has enhanced everything about him, almost turning him into a superhuman. He possesses greatly-enhanced strength, stamina, agility, and reflexes. Also, he uses around 90% of his brain, making him a tactical genius. On top of all that, he has a healing factor which enables him to heal from life-threatening injuries.
In addition to his serum-based powers and Nth Metal suit, Slade also employs various weapons during his jobs like guns, grenades, swords, and even an energy staff. Slade is an expert martial artist.
WHY I LOVE THE CHARACTER: How could I not love Deathstroke? He is basically Captain America and Punisher combined into one ass-kicking package. His costume is super-cool, and he’s just an all-around badass. I don’t really need any other reason to like him aside from those, now, do I?
HISTORY AND POWERS: Zatanna first debuted in Hawkman #4 (October-November 1964) and was created by Gardner Fox and Murphy Anderson. Zatanna Zatara is the daughter of magician Giovanni Zatara and Sindella, a member of the magical Homo Magi race and becomes a stage illusionist before discovering she can perform actual magic and cast spells. She then works alongside heroes such as John Constantine and the JLA to fight crime.
Zatanna is one of the most powerful sorceresses in the DC Universe, and while her abilities have never been defined in a definite way, she can cast spells that heal, damage, and hinder foes. She has accomplished great feats of magic such as altering time and space, and most of her ability is tied to her self confidence.
WHY I LOVE THE CHARACTER: Zatanna uses magic, which, since I love works of fantasy – is something I am immediately drawn to and identify with. Her powers are quirky and versatile, her costume is sexy and different from many other heroes, and we get to see the magical side of the DC Universe through characters like her. I love the supernatural twist on superheroes, and it’s rare to find. Luckily we have Zatanna.
HISTORY AND POWERS: Huntress (The Helena Bertinelli version) first debuted in The Huntress #1 (April 1989) and was created by Joey Cavalieri and Joe Staton (with the original character being created by Paul Levitz, Joe Staton, Joe Orlando, and Bob Layton). Helena Bertinelli is the daughter of a mob boss in Gotham City and eventually witnesses the brutal murder of her entire family. Vowing an end to the mafia, Helena suits up as Huntress and exacts revenge on criminals everywhere.
Huntress is in peak human condition, is an expert marksman with bows and other firearms, a martial artist of superb caliber, and an accomplished sleuth. She sometimes wields crossbows and other times a staff.
WHY I LOVE THE CHARACTER: I love Huntress for the same reasons I love Marvel’s Punisher. She watched her entire family murdered in front of her and so wished to seek vengeance. She’s much like Batman but more willing to use lethal force, which is a good distinction to show with her. On top of that, I think her costume is one of the sexiest costumes out there for a female super hero and for me, it’s a bonus. I like the fact that Helena actually has a motive and is willing to kill to keep the streets clean.
HISTORY AND POWERS: Rorschach first debuted in Watchmen #1 (September 1986) and was created by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons. Walter Kovacs is a child with an abusive mother, and eventually grows up within the foster care system. Growing up like that eventually sees him wearing a mask, inspired by the senseless death of Kitty Genovese (a real life death in our own world) to fight crime. He eventually ends up working with Nite Owl II and then the Watchmen sometime after.
Rorschach is an “old school” crime fighter, not relying on many gadgets or powers and instead relying on his brain and his brawn together, though his tactics are somewhat brutal. He is a tactical genius and can use anything around him as an offensive weapon. Rorschach is also a very accomplished boxer and street brawler, heightened by his time fighting crime and in prison, and he is also great at detective work.
WHY I LOVE THE CHARACTER: Having grown up in a bad childhood situation, and having been through the foster care system, Rorschach embodies the kind of bitter, vengeance-obsessed man I could’ve become. What he thinks of the city, of people in general, are dark ideas I sometimes have due to my own experiences in life. This, coupled with the fact that he’s brutally honest, and brutally violent – cements him as my number one choice for a DC character. I like my characters human, as I’ve said many times before – and Rorschach is the most human of us all, even if the rest of us won’t admit that.
Graduated from Saint Joseph's College Of Maine with a Bachelor's in Fine Arts - Creative Writing as well as Stonecoast, a low-residency MFA program through University of Southern Maine. Has several screenplays, a novel, graphic novel and a memoir all in development.