Superhero Categories

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Superhero Categories

Postby evan price » Tue Sep 01, 2015 6:38 am

I just had a thought during a long drive into work that we can divide "superheroes" into 3 distinct categories:

1. Beings with an intrinsic natural ability- Superman, Aquaman, The X-Men, Thor, Hellboy

2. Beings with a gadget or suit that gives them special abilities- Iron Man, Ant-Man, The Falcon, Batman

3. Beings that have had some change that makes them special- Spiderman, The Flash, The Hulk, Wolverine, Green Lantern, Captain America
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby Greg » Tue Sep 01, 2015 7:26 am

evan price wrote:I just had a thought during a long drive into work that we can divide "superheroes" into 3 distinct categories:

1. Beings with an intrinsic natural ability- Superman, Aquaman, The X-Men, Thor, Hellboy

2. Beings with a gadget or suit that gives them special abilities- Iron Man, Ant-Man, The Falcon, Batman

3. Beings that have had some change that makes them special- Spiderman, The Flash, The Hulk, Wolverine, Green Lantern, Captain America


Wolverine is (1) and (3). It's only (1) that lets him survive (3).
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby Jericho941 » Tue Sep 01, 2015 7:42 am

evan price wrote:I just had a thought during a long drive into work that we can divide "superheroes" into 3 distinct categories:

1. Beings with an intrinsic natural ability- Superman, Aquaman, The X-Men, Thor, Hellboy

2. Beings with a gadget or suit that gives them special abilities- Iron Man, Ant-Man, The Falcon, Batman

3. Beings that have had some change that makes them special- Spiderman, The Flash, The Hulk, Wolverine, Green Lantern, Captain America



In the case of Batman and Iron Man, starting out as #1 is why they act as #2.

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Re: Does not follow...

Postby evan price » Tue Sep 01, 2015 11:51 am

Jericho941 wrote:
evan price wrote:I just had a thought during a long drive into work that we can divide "superheroes" into 3 distinct categories:

1. Beings with an intrinsic natural ability- Superman, Aquaman, The X-Men, Thor, Hellboy

2. Beings with a gadget or suit that gives them special abilities- Iron Man, Ant-Man, The Falcon, Batman

3. Beings that have had some change that makes them special- Spiderman, The Flash, The Hulk, Wolverine, Green Lantern, Captain America



In the case of Batman and Iron Man, starting out as #1 is why they act as #2.

Well, no, y'see. Tony Stark and Bruce Wayne are rich geniuses but without their gear they are just normal people.
"Genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist" as Stark says in The Avengers.
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby evan price » Tue Sep 01, 2015 11:53 am

Greg wrote:
evan price wrote:I just had a thought during a long drive into work that we can divide "superheroes" into 3 distinct categories:

1. Beings with an intrinsic natural ability- Superman, Aquaman, The X-Men, Thor, Hellboy

2. Beings with a gadget or suit that gives them special abilities- Iron Man, Ant-Man, The Falcon, Batman

3. Beings that have had some change that makes them special- Spiderman, The Flash, The Hulk, Wolverine, Green Lantern, Captain America


Wolverine is (1) and (3). It's only (1) that lets him survive (3).

I forgot Wolverine was a mutant first...
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby Kommander » Tue Sep 01, 2015 12:30 pm

1. Beings with an intrinsic natural ability- Superman, Aquaman, The X-Men, Thor, Hellboy

2. Beings with a gadget or suit that gives them special abilities- Iron Man, Ant-Man, The Falcon

3. Beings that have had some change that makes them special- Spiderman, The Flash, The Hulk, Green Lantern, Captain America

4. Beings that are Batman

There, fixed it.

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Re: Does not follow...

Postby John_in_Longview » Tue Sep 01, 2015 2:29 pm

Kommander wrote:1. Beings with an intrinsic natural ability- Superman, Aquaman, The X-Men, Thor, Hellboy

2. Beings with a gadget or suit that gives them special abilities- Iron Man, Ant-Man, The Falcon, Green Lanterns

3. Beings that have had some change that makes them special- Spiderman, The Flash, The Hulk,Green Lantern, Captain America

4. Beings that are Batman

There, fixed it.


The members of the Green Lantern Corps derive their power via their power rings. There are non-human members of the GLC which would fall into category 1 when compared to humans.

I would agree that category 4 is the best.

Side note: I need to try harder not to let my children become comic book collectors like I was, but it's hard when I enjoying watching the new DC/Marvel cartoons more than they do. :geek:

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Re: Does not follow...

Postby JAG2955 » Tue Sep 01, 2015 2:48 pm

Wife and I have slightly different superhero categories, also determined on a car trip:

1. Aliens with superhuman abilities-Superman, Darkseid, Orion, the rest of the New Gods, Galactus, etc.

2. Tech based-Green Lantern Corps, Iron Man, Cyborg, Ant-Man, etc.

3. Mutants (born with their abilities, mostly human)-Wolverine, the X-men, Black Canary, etc.

4. Mutates (changed to get their abilities, still mostly human)-Hulk, Captain America, Flash, etc

5. Supernatural-Hawk and Dove, Specter, Captain Marvel, Hercules, etc.

6. Peak human-Batman, Green Arrow, Mr. Terrific, etc.

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Re: Does not follow...

Postby dfwmtx » Tue Sep 01, 2015 4:54 pm

Where does the Punisher fit into your taxonomy?
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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby randy » Tue Sep 01, 2015 9:41 pm

Split from the Does Not Follow thread at OP's request.
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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby Weetabix » Tue Sep 01, 2015 10:53 pm

You guys make me feel normal. And you can take that whichever way you like! :lol:
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby Dinochrome One » Tue Sep 01, 2015 11:08 pm

dfwmtx wrote:Where does the Punisher fit into your taxonomy?


Looks like #6 to me; he's just heavily-armed-and-cruel Batman.
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby JustinR » Tue Sep 01, 2015 11:42 pm

evan price wrote:Well, no, y'see. Tony Stark and Bruce Wayne are rich geniuses but without their gear they are just normal people. "Genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist" as Stark says in The Avengers.


I disagree. Stark is a brilliant engineer and inventor. His intellect IS his ability. The suit is merely the physical representation of his ability. Building the primitive suit in the cave in Crapanastan is a good example.

Wayne on the other hand, if you follow the Christopher Nolen movie theme, dedicated himself to learning, for lack of a better term, ninjitsu. His physical prowess and stealth are nothing to sneeze at, and I would consider far from a "normal" individual.
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby JAG2955 » Wed Sep 02, 2015 1:21 am

dfwmtx wrote:Where does the Punisher fit into your taxonomy?


Punisher would be Peak Human. While he does use tech, it is mostly off-the-shelf technology within the reach of the common, or even uncommon man. He is foremost in the field of weapons employment and tactics.

While Batman and Green Arrow utilize tech to a degree, they are still extremely dangerous without.

Lex Luthor and Tony Stark, while Peak Human in terms of intelligence, they are not effective without tech to the degree that Batman, Nightwing, or even Joker (peak human in terms of planning, deceit, and psychology) are. Someone like Clock King (lame super villain who can coordinate events to the nanosecond), who could get beaten up by a middle-school kid is still peak human in his own field.

The greatest superhero would be the offspring of Superman and Wonder Woman raised by Bruce Wayne and armed with a Green Power Ring.
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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby Kommander » Wed Sep 02, 2015 1:57 am

Depending on the story, writer, etc. it often seems that the Punishes greatest super power is the fact that he is actually willing to kill people. Should make things interesting if they

Fun fact for those watching the Netflix Daredevil series:

Spoiler! :
By any legal standard the Daredevil committed a homicide during his fight with the red ninja guy that ended up extra crispy. So much for not killing people. Also Karen managed to do more damage to Wilson Fisk's operation by pulling a trigger a few times than the Daredevil ever did. I'm not sure that I am getting the message the writers intended to send.

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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby SoupOrMan » Wed Sep 02, 2015 6:12 am

Whatever tiers of superheroes you may have, remember this: Aquaman is the worst of the Superfriends. Hawkman is the worst of the second-tier Superfriends. Also note that the Superfriends are very very different from the Justice League.
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby evan price » Wed Sep 02, 2015 6:48 am

John_in_Longview wrote:
Kommander wrote:1. Beings with an intrinsic natural ability- Superman, Aquaman, The X-Men, Thor, Hellboy

2. Beings with a gadget or suit that gives them special abilities- Iron Man, Ant-Man, The Falcon, Green Lanterns

3. Beings that have had some change that makes them special- Spiderman, The Flash, The Hulk,Green Lantern, Captain America

4. Beings that are Batman

There, fixed it.


The members of the Green Lantern Corps derive their power via their power rings. There are non-human members of the GLC which would fall into category 1 when compared to humans.



I would say that those non-human entities that have received GLC rings are themselves normal for their own archetypes.
However, given that, Superman is nothing special compared to Kryptonians either.


Also: Why does Aquaman rule the sea creatures, and why do the ants listen to Ant-Man when he commands them via his helmet?

Who elected them to be in charge?
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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby Denis » Wed Sep 02, 2015 7:23 am

So where do Judge Dredd and Rogue Trooper fit in, not to mention the Watchmen?

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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby toad » Wed Sep 02, 2015 10:15 am

Denis wrote:So where do Judge Dredd and Rogue Trooper fit in, not to mention the Watchmen?

Well IIRC Judge Dread had no superpowers. He was well equipped, big and mean, and had civil authority to judge and kill.
The Watchmen were a mixed bag some had super powers and some didn't.
Never came across the "Rogue Trooper".

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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby Dub_James » Wed Sep 02, 2015 11:49 am

Rogue Trooper was genetically crafted and "born", not sure where we'd fit him on the list.
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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby Kommander » Wed Sep 02, 2015 11:04 pm

Dredd really is not really a superhero anyway but rather just a cop who is really good at his job. Sort of an overtly facist Dirty Harry of the future. The only hero with any powers in Watchmen is Dr. Manhattan. The rest are all a combination of tech, physical conditioning, and insanity.

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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby Greg » Wed Sep 02, 2015 11:13 pm

Kommander wrote:Dredd really is not really a superhero anyway but rather just a cop who is really good at his job. Sort of an overtly facist Dirty Harry of the future. The only hero with any powers in Watchmen is Dr. Manhattan. The rest are all a combination of tech, physical conditioning, and insanity.


Ozymandias is peak human. He's clearly superior to the others, except Dr Manhattan.
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby Jericho941 » Wed Sep 02, 2015 11:17 pm

evan price wrote:
Jericho941 wrote:
evan price wrote:I just had a thought during a long drive into work that we can divide "superheroes" into 3 distinct categories:

1. Beings with an intrinsic natural ability- Superman, Aquaman, The X-Men, Thor, Hellboy

2. Beings with a gadget or suit that gives them special abilities- Iron Man, Ant-Man, The Falcon, Batman

3. Beings that have had some change that makes them special- Spiderman, The Flash, The Hulk, Wolverine, Green Lantern, Captain America



In the case of Batman and Iron Man, starting out as #1 is why they act as #2.

Well, no, y'see. Tony Stark and Bruce Wayne are rich geniuses but without their gear they are just normal people.
"Genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist" as Stark says in The Avengers.


Normal people can't build miniaturized reactors in caves.

What I'm getting at is that in the case of Bruce Wayne and Tony Stark, their absurd genius is a superpower by itself, among other things. These are the kinds of guys you could never say "just take away their money and-" because they gain doctorates overnight and invent game changing wonders on their way to the bathroom in the morning. They will never be less than ridiculously wealthy. Ultimately they rely on their gear in a straight up fight, but every time they're cut off from it, they basically just "genius" their way out of it.

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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby evan price » Thu Sep 03, 2015 6:14 am

Denis wrote:So where do Judge Dredd and Rogue Trooper fit in, not to mention the Watchmen?


The original Watchmen were all normal types- Night Owl was basically Batman- nothing without gadgets. Ozymandious obviously was a supergenius sort of like a Lawful Evil version of Tony Stark.

As mentioned above, Dr. Manhattan was the only "Super" and he was technically a created Super, he was a normal guy until the accident. That puts him in the same category as The Incredible Hulk and Spiderman.

How about Doctor Strange? Did he just learn to be the most badass sorcerer of the black arts or did he have some sort of Midichlorian-like predisposition for magic?
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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby evan price » Thu Sep 03, 2015 6:21 am

The AD&D alignment system can be confusing, I was sitting here after I typed "Lawful Evil Tony Stark" and thought about alignments.

Superman & Capt. America = Lawful Good
Rorschach & Judge Dredd = Lawful Neutral
Batman = Neutral Good
Iron Man = Chaotic Good
Hulk = Chaotic Neutral
Doc Manhattan = True Neutral

What say you, fellow gamer geeks?
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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby Kommander » Thu Sep 03, 2015 2:35 pm

I think that Alan Moore would be unhappy that your trying to stuff his characters into convienent moral cubbyholes.

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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby Jericho941 » Fri Sep 04, 2015 12:16 am

Alan Moore strikes me as the sort of person who's happiest when they're unhappy.

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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby MiddleAgedKen » Fri Sep 04, 2015 3:19 am

Not to jack the thread, but I just realized that it really makes sense that my favorite superheroes Captain America (Steve Rogers incarnation) and The Flash (Barry Allen incarnation).

They don't come any more noble than those two.
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Re: Superhero Categories

Postby Weetabix » Fri Sep 04, 2015 1:40 pm

Captain America makes me feel hopeful when I watch him. I'll have to check out the Flash, too.
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby HTRN » Sat Sep 05, 2015 4:47 am

Dinochrome One wrote:
dfwmtx wrote:Where does the Punisher fit into your taxonomy?


Looks like #6 to me; he's just heavily-armed-and-cruel Batman.

Frank Castle isn't a "hero'. He's a "garbageman". :ugeek:
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby Jericho941 » Sat Sep 05, 2015 6:18 am

HTRN wrote:
Dinochrome One wrote:
dfwmtx wrote:Where does the Punisher fit into your taxonomy?


Looks like #6 to me; he's just heavily-armed-and-cruel Batman.

Frank Castle isn't a "hero'. He's a "garbageman". :ugeek:


Yeah. Batman doesn't just use his money to buy gear and training to beat up the poor and insane. As Bruce Wayne, he runs a truly ridiculous number of charities, makes a point of giving felons jobs to curb recidivism, is a member of the parole board, and is so involved at combating crime at every possible level it's kind of a wonder he gets any Wayne Corp business done. The guy is so selflessly devoted to his cause that even if he's an atheist, I'm pretty sure there'd be the prerequisite two postmortem miracles necessitating his canonization as Saint Bruce.

That's the main thing that really bugged me about the "Nolanverse" Batman from the recent movies: He's more or less Punisher set to "stun" because guns are bad, mmkay? Chris Nolan's Batman was so anti-gun, he was an elitist about being a vigilante: So it's okay for some rich asshole who can afford years of martial arts training, super-secret special armor, and travel the entire world to find some weird cult to train with in the arts of beating people up to get a weird themed disguise and fight crime, but when Joe Blow who works 14 hours a day to return to a shithole apartment wants to do something about the assholes who keep robbing him and his neighbors, he's a LOLFAT sack of crap because he dares to use guns.

I mean, when Tony Stark is objectively a better person than your version of Bruce Wayne, you done goofed. "He's all yours."

Nolan's version of Bruce Wayne gets to take the cowl off and retire to his nice mansion well outside the crappy parts of Gotham because he feels sad, or broken, empty inside or whatever Hollywood thinks is "deep." Meanwhile Fatty McAverage has to keep living in Crime Hell 24/7/365 minus his rifle because Bats destroyed it, then Joker happens to him.

The other thing was all the Joker worship that came out of the second movie. Dude, he's a villain. He doesn't "make more sense" than Batman. Neither of them make any sense in the context of those godawful movies.

Anyway, I digress. Punisher doesn't care. Punisher punishes. Batman cares. That's the main difference between the two.

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Re: Does not follow...

Postby evan price » Sat Sep 05, 2015 10:29 am

Jericho941 wrote:That's the main thing that really bugged me about the "Nolanverse" Batman from the recent movies: He's more or less Punisher set to "stun" because guns are bad, mmkay? Chris Nolan's Batman was so anti-gun, he was an elitist about being a vigilante: So it's okay for some rich asshole who can afford years of martial arts training, super-secret special armor, and travel the entire world to find some weird cult to train with in the arts of beating people up to get a weird themed disguise and fight crime, but when Joe Blow who works 14 hours a day to return to a shithole apartment wants to do something about the assholes who keep robbing him and his neighbors, he's a LOLFAT sack of crap because he dares to use guns.


Bear in mind that Nolan was born a Brit and as such had his testes physically removed shortly after birth. The idea of guns in the hands of anyone but duly designated and specially authorized agents of HM's government leaves him with the screaming meemies because firearms not only kill- which is bad enough- but death by firearm rips the very eternal soul out of the victim, so dying from a gunshot wound- no matter if justified in self defence- leaves the shooter as an even worse criminal than the original criminal they shot. This *is* England, where a rapist home invader gets community sentencing and an ASBO, but the homeowner who defends themselves with their old shotgun gets life in prison.

This is today's England:
http://www.yorkpress.co.uk/news/8805022 ... d_mystery/
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article ... -pond.html
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Re: Does not follow...

Postby Weetabix » Sat Sep 05, 2015 5:26 pm

evan price wrote:http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2350657/Couple-discover-7-500-machine-gun-shotgun-pistol-bullets-garden-weeding-pond.html

Quaking in fear at the thought of the demonic pellets, Mr. Tipping went on, "Their unholy spirits could come back to punish me for disturbing their burial ground. I soiled my armor, I was so scared!"
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