Digital Journalism Workshop: List Writing of The Greatest Comic Book Characters of All Time

The Greatest Comic Book Characters of All Time

Take a look at my favourite top 10 greatest comic book characters that ever were..

Since the introduction of the comic book format in 1934, many have argued and named who they feel are the greatest characters. Whether it be the Golden, Silver, Bronze or Modern Age; this particular medium is producing memorable and original characters all the time, resulting in the difficulty to depict which characters are definite fan favourites. Here, is my own list of who I feel are the greatest comic book characters of all time; all from a number of independent and well known publications.You may agree or disagree with me on a few of these rankings, however this is just my opinion on who I feel are individual, memorable and incredible characters and will always remain my favourite for as long as I enjoy comics.

10# Harley Quinn:

 First Appearance: Batman: The Animated Series “Joker’s Favor”. Despite only firstly being created as a mere “walk-on” role, Harley Quinn has become an immortal fan favourite in the Batman Universe. She transcends most characters with her infectious fun-loving (and also insane) personality and catch-phrases. Best Issue: “Mad Love” (1994).

9# Thor

 First Appearance: Journey into Mystery#83, 1962. The Marvel interpretation of the norse God of Thunder, Thor is probably one of the most iconic comic book characters of the silver age of comic books. He is a prominent member of the Marvel superhero team “The Avengers”, and even has his own live-action film franchise. In the words of co-creator Jack Kirby:  “How do you make someone stronger than the strongest person? Don’t make him human — make him a god.” Best Issue: Thor: The Midgard Serpent (1987).

#8 Scott Pilgrim

 First Appearance: Scott Pilgrim’s Precious Little Life 2004.23-year-old Canadian Scott Pilgrim, a shaggy haired slacker and part-time musician who lives in Toronto and plays bass guitar in the band Sex Bob-omb. He falls in love with American delivery girl Ramona Flowers, but must defeat her seven evil exes in order to date her. It is a definite that this character along with his story is creative to say the least, this character is on the list as he is a refreshing individual in a comic book world usually run by superheroes. Best Issue: Scott Pilgrim’s Precious Little Life (2004), very hard to choose!

7# Mystique

 First Appearance: Ms Marvel No.16 1978. A mutant that can shape-shift in to anything she please, Mystique is one of the most memorable villains of the “X Men” comic books. So much that she’s appeared in every X Men animated series, film and many other media forms. Although initially and for a majority of the time she is a villain, Mystique remains a fan favourite and I expect will remain so for years to come. Best Issue: House of M (2005).

#6 Rick Grimes

 First Issue: The Walking Dead #1 2003.  The primary protagonist of the ongoing black and white series The Walking Dead, throughout the series, Rick has strived to keep those around him safe from the zombie epidemic that has broken out in the comic books story. His character’s story has changed the way zombie-based narratives are received by not only fans but also the critics alike. Best Issue: The Walking Dead Volume 14 (2011)

#5 Marv (Sin City)

 First Appearance: The Hard Goodbye 1991. Marv is an unstably violent imposing figure who is covered in scars but with a good heart commonly getting himself involved in fights, usually in the defense of women. Best Issue: The Hard Goodbye (1991).

#4 Rorschach

 First Appearance: Watchmen#1 1986. Wearing the inc-blot mask he considers his “true face”, rorschach is a one-man team battling crime after the costumed vigilante group “The Crime Busters” is forced to dissolve. A cynical individual who sets new rules for the world of superheroes. Best Issue: Watchmen#12 1987.

#3 The Joker

 First Appearance: Batman#1 1940. Arch enemy of Batman, who is a master criminal with a clown like appearance who’s violent sociopathic tendencies lead him to murdering people for his own amusement. He has gone through many interpretations from live action to varying comic book versions of his character and will ever remain a fan favourite. Best Issue: The Killing Joke (1988).

#2 Batman

 First Appearance: Batman#1 1940. One of the most successful comic book characters of all time, who unlike most super heroes does not possess any actual superpowers but instead has genius level intelligence, is at the peak of human physical condition and has the wealth to access high tech equipment. Best Issue: Hush (2002).

#1 V

 First Appearance: V for Vendetta #1 1988. V is a largely unknown character whose identity is never revealed and whose backgroud is largely never explained and a believer in anarchy as an idea to over throw a totalitarianist government. He models himself after Guy Fawkes and throughout the comic strives to finish what he started. Best Issue: V for Vendetta #10 (1989).


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