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Channing "Gambit" Tatum and Your Favorite Superheroes

I've been quite blocked today (apologies) so I'd like to turn the time over to you for an open discussion. With news coming that Channing Tatum would love to play Gambit in a movie (poor Taylor Kitsch. It's not his fault everyone has tried to scrub X-Men Origins: Wolverine from their memory) Fox will surely be jumping all over that to make it happen.

Though the superhero movie boom will surely die out as all movie trends do eventually, we have no idea how long it will last so we'll just try to enjoy it while it does rather than bristle against it.

The other day on Facebook Stan Lee posted a 'name your five favorite superheroes' thread and I answered more quickly than I knew I could. Without thinking about it five names popped right into mind: Nightcrawler, The Human Torch, Storm, Spider-Man, and The Scarlet Witch. Other than Sam Raimi's perfect Spider-Man 2 I haven't had much luck getting my favorite characters translated to my taste on the screen though, so I've tended to enjoy characters I didn't much at all care for in the comics the most onscreen. Like Captain America. Speaking of... my eyes bugged out seeing a brief glimpse of The Scarlet Witch in that film and I'll be curious to see how Joss Whedon and Elizabeth Olsen dramatize her in The Avengers: Age of Ulton. But still, I hate those post-movie tags which are the heighth of pandering narrative inelegance. They're very much like "next week on..." TV tags

But I'm curious. Name your five favorite superheroes in the comments.  I perused through some answers on Facebook and was surprised to see that very few people chose heroes beyond the truly iconic household name ones - batman, superman, spider-man, and wolverine were constantly name-checked.

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Reader Comments (30)

Jean Grey. The Dark Phoenix Saga is one of the most incredible stories in any medium. I will never forgive Fox and Brett Ratner for X-Men: The Last Stand. Jean (and Famke Janssen) deserved better.

Iceman, Human Torch, Spider-Man - the three heroes I most wanted to be growing up. As a small kid who got teased a lot, Peter Parker's story always resonated with me, and his wisecracking web-slinging later ego was a great escapist fantasy. Iceman and Human Torch had similar personalities (with the way they used humor) and even cooler powers.

Batman. Benefits hugely from his rogues gallery, but an incredible backstory and consistently great writing in the comics puts him on my list. His stories are always more grounded in reality than most other superheroes, which is something I appreciated more as I got older. Awesome cross-media adaptations like the animated series, The Dark Knight and Batman: Arkham City just keep reminding me why Batman is an icon.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJonny

Storm is the only superhero I have ever truly wanted to own the powers of. Maybe Buffy.

But then its not a genre I really care about or follow.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterHenry

1. Psylocke: Emotionally complicated, three-dimensional, refuses to be sex-shamed. Just an all-around badass character.

2. Tabita Smoth (Boom Boom? Meltdown? She changes her name a lot): Fun, creative powers, complex character.

3. Storm: Great origin story, great writing. She is the character that has been failed the most in the comic book to film adaptation process. Writing, casting...this character has been short-changed in nearly every way on film.

4. Northstar: Probably a biased citation because he's both queer and Canadian, but I love this character. And I think he's the first to marry a man in the Marvel Universe.

5. Colossus: Protective, yet gentle. A giant block of titanium with a beating heart. The ultimate fantasy. Like Storm, totally disposable in the film universe. Maybe next time will be better?

1. Rogue (X-Men) - Wish they would give as a proper movie version already.
2. Batman
3. Gambit (X-Men)
4. Storm (X-Men)
5. Medusa (Fantastic Four) - More gray area than superhero but I just love her.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSad man

Storm, The Hulk, The Black Cat, Rogue and Nicole Kidman!
What? Is there any genre she cannot tame? now thats a super hero!

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterRizz

My teenage self just had an orgasm


I always loved Spiderman, but he was more of a default favorite. In fact, Cable probably comes closest to breaking into this lineup. Rogue and Colossus will always be my favorite superheros...ever.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAndrew

Jean Grey/Phoenix - Out of all the heroes, she's the one whose powers i'd love to have. Plus, The Dark Phoenix Saga is one of the greatest story arcs to ever be published. Totally agree with Jonny about the story and Famke deserving better.

Emma Frost/White Queen - She's an ice cold glamorous bitch who usually has a pathetic excuse for a costume. She's everything.

Gambit - Cajun Swagger! Who doesn't want to be him?

Batman - Just an ordinary man who holds his own among gods. But I like him more because he has such a great roster of villains.

I can't think of a strong 5th one. Maybe Wonder Woman.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDerreck.

Green Lantern (Kyle Rayner, although his storylines weren't always great)
Tank Girl? Whatever, she counts.
Larfleeze, aka the Orange Lantern

I'm honestly over Batman and Superman. Oversaturation has led to apathy. I have hope for the future, though.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAnne Marie

Wildfire & Dawnstar (Legion of Super Heroes)
Dream Girl (LOSH)
Black Knight (Avengers)

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterTravis

My sensibilities from having grown up reading comics in the glorious '80s definitely skewed my picks:

Batman - When written well, he is very compelling.

Moon Knight - An obvious Batman knock-off, but I always liked him anyway.

Swamp Thing - Moore's work is incredible.

Daredevil - Miller's work is incredible.

Grendel - More of a villain and went through a lot of changes, but still a fascinating read.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterGregarius

From my X-Men loving youth, this is pretty easy:

Jean Grey/Dark Phoenix

...okay I lied. Those four were easy. Choosing a fifth? Not so much. It MIGHT be Mystique. Or Colossus. Or Cyclops. Or Rogue. Or Silver Surfer. Or Storm.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterdenny

Human Torch-I had such a crush on him growing up, and just-Johnny Storm was my first fake boyfriend.

Rogue-She was completely awesome, had the most powerful of powers, and was genuinely charming. Plus, her flirting with Gambit-bliss.

Jean Grey-I mean, come on-strong female character that totally dominated the most interesting of the X-Men storylines. Impossible not to love.

The Watcher-Completely powerful, mysterious, and always on the edges (the What If comics were my favorite).

Banshee-My mom got me into comic books, and he was one of her favorites so I guess that translated. Plus, again, one of the more unique powers.

Also, I feel like I need to point out that the villains of the comic book universe (Magneto and the Joker especially) were probably the best part so they would have made the list if it weren't just superheroes.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJohn T

Jean Grey/ Phoenix/ Dark Phoenix/ Black Queen . The level 5 mutant is the strongest there is and oh so sexy. Phoenix has used her power to delete my memory of the existence of that horrible X-Men The Last Stand hurray movie disaster

Superman/ Clark Kent. The phone booth changes and his nerdyness and krypton weakness

Storm/ Ororo Munroe. African elegance, powerful and angry. Halle Berry is neither of this

Emma Frost/ White Queen. Because she is an icy bitch and sexy

Wonder Woman. United States Flag hot pants, diadem, red boots, long raven hair and intelligent. Who can resist her?

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterManuel

5? If I were to choose one, (please don't punch me for this), it would be the Nickelodeon genre riff Danny Phantom. (Always kind of had a thing for "good ghost" stories). The peak run is probably episodes 7-25. (A bit too juvenile before, but mostly not painful, and a bit too compressed after, likely caused by the looming threat of cancellation.)

The other four overall?

Pre New 52 Stephanie Brown (and they're turning her into the hyper-competent save everyone badass in Batman: Eternal. Ugh. Talk about missing the bleeping POINT. She's probably not even going to be the daughter of either of the clue-droppers this time.)
Helen Parr

Limited just to characters who started in comics (because, yeah, I included a couple started in animation riffs in the first one)?

Pre New 52 Stephanie Brown
Batman (The rogues gallery, the fact that he's bold/crazy enough to train kids and the history that said truth ultimately created. I've not really been (fully) satisfied with any of his film adaptations yet, but I AM forced to concede that Batman: The Animated Series and the Batman: Arkham game series are probably the best currently produced that I can be satisfied with in any context, sidekick light or not.)
The Tick (His comics aren't nearly as known as his shows, but he did start in the comics, so let me have this one. Spoon!)

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

Volvagia, I've been waiting for you to weigh in! So glad to see Stephanie Brown make somebody's list. She's not on mine entirely because of this New 52 nonsense. (Same with Barbara Gordon. RIP, Oracle).

It also makes me really happy somebody else loves Danny Phantom.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAnne Marie

(in alphabetical order)
Dr. Strange
Lar Gand (aka Mon-El/Valor/M'Onel/Green Lantern)

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Outlaw

Jean Grey
Sue Storm

Interesting that 4/5 are women. Or maybe not surprising since that they were some of the only strong female characters I was regularly seeing on screen and in literature. As for Cyclops, I always had an affinity for because I empathised with the fact that everyone loved Wolverine, but Cyclops was always reliable, clean cut and did the right thing - but never go the right kudos for it. Also LASERS OUT OF EYES.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJoFo

Green Lantern (Hal Jordan)
Captain America

No particular order for that list. It was hard enough cutting the list down to just 5. Spiderman, Batman and Nightwing are CLOSE behind.

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMickey

My fave superheroes... well, some of them are never getting the big screen treatment. (Although some already have.)
- Starman (Jack Knight)
- Animal Man
- Booster Gold
- Rogue
- Hawkeye

April 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterOwen

In no particular order:

- Iron Man (but the pusillanimous Tony Stark of time ago in the comics... not the RobertDowneyJrish version)
- Darkhawk (the coolest hero of the 90's)
- Scarlet Witch (with a special mention to Quicksilver and the Vision)
- Green Lantern (I have forgotten they did that film)
- The Wasp (I am so angry they haven't included her in the Avengers films...)

April 16, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterbonobo

All of you are stupid. stupid, stupid.

April 16, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJoe

1. Wonder Woman (in the George Perez years).
2. Storm (in any of her incarnations).
3. Beast (in the 90s animated series).
4. The Justice League International, during the amazing Giffen/DeMatteis run, when it didn't feature any of the big names (well I guess Batman was there), but some oddball members, like the Blue Beetle, Black Canary and the Silver Sorceress.
5. The Incredibles.

April 16, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterCarmen Sandiego

bonobo -- i had forgotten that Green Lantern was one of my all time favorites precisely because that film was so terrible. I wish I could forget the film rather than my love for Hal Jordan.

April 16, 2014 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

so herewith a slight expansion/revision of my fav superheroes ever

1. Nightcrawler
2. Storm
3. Spider-Man
4. The Human Torch
5. Green Lantern (marred by a hideous messy movie)
6. The Scarlet Witch
7. Daredevil (marred by a hatefully inept movie)
8. Rogue (I like Paquin in the movies but it doesn't feel like Rogue to me at all regardless)
9. Phoenix (the one Jean Grey incarnation I loved... but oh how i loved)
10. Cyclops
11. Iceman
12. Cloak & Dagger
13. Northstar
14. Quicksilver
15. Wonder Woman
16. Angel
17. The Wasp
18. The Flash
19. Invisible Woman
20. anyone from The Legion of SuperHeroes or Teen Titans (we had a moment when i was very young)

...and i always considered Catwoman a villain which is why she isn't here.

April 16, 2014 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I have to go with Phoenix, Storm, The White Queen, Professor X, and Magneto. Sexy superladies 4ever. Still mourning the non-casting of early-90s Julianne Moore, Angela Bassett, and Michelle Pfeiffer… it could've been glorious. Luckily they got Prof X and Magneto just right (twice).

I'm obviously an X-Men fiend; I had a major crush on comic book Magneto circa the revamped X-Men 1-3 (the early 90s), and I've always appreciated the sub subversive wonder of the leader of the whole X-universe being a bald cripple with a strong mind.

April 16, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAdam Keller

OMG I forgot Rogue!!!

She gets the White Queen slot if the White Queen has to be considered a villain (the iteration I loved was certainly from the earlier, evil era). Otherwise I guess Rogue is a close 6th. Yeah Paquin definitely missed the mark, good performance or no. I'm not really sure what Singer was thinking there… I guess there was no other star particularly better suited to the role, and Paquin was perceived as having the chops for it.

April 16, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAdam Keller

Can´t believe not one has mentioned my favorite: Thor. Powerful and inmortal. What else could I ask? Then Gambit, the coolest of all. Like the kind of dude you wanna hang out with. And since I´ve been always fascinated by magic and such, Dr. Strange.
Never found Spiderman appealing, don´t know why.

April 16, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterLuca

Gambit was much more interesting that Wolverine-
"Challengers of the Unknown" a sort of X-File with hunks.

April 16, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJaragon

From the top of my head: Storm, Hulk, She-Hulk, Green Lantern (John Stewart, not Hal) & probably Martian Manhunter.

I just realized 4/5 of these superheroes are green-skinned or have green outfits. Ha.

April 17, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterTiffany

I always adored the Scarlet Witch, and really related to her as a kid. In the WASPY universe of the comics, in which the last names of the X-Men were Worthington, Summers, Grey, Pym, and Drake, along comes a Maximoff with dark, curly hair like mine. She was the coolest.

I was on board early with Wolverine, loving him since Chris Claremont's bringing him into the X-Men in 1975.

Also in the 1970s, I fell in love with Storm.

I'll add Daredevil and Jean Grey.

Runners-up include the Black Widow, Iron Fist, Luke Cage...I love me some 70s Marvel.

April 18, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDeborah Lipp

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