The Strongest Comic Book Characters of All Time

The Marvel and DC cinematic universes serve as a great way to introduce casual viewers to some of the more obscure characters from comic book history. They also allow devoted comic book readers to see some of their favorite heroes and villains up on the silver screen. However, there are some comic book characters who are far too powerful to appear in the MCU or DCEU due to the massive imbalance that their inclusion would inevitably create.

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The strongest comic book characters boast abilities that would put the likes of Superman and Captain America to shame were they ever to come face to face. Likewise, the celestial beings who watch over their respective universes possess powers that could vaporize villains mere moments into a movie, making it impossible to integrate them without producing plot holes. As such, many of the most powerful comic book characters will likely remain in print for all eternity, which, in many ways, is a real shame.

10 Doctor Manhattan (DC Comics)

After an experiment involving radioactive particles goes wrong, Doctor Jonathan Osterman is torn apart at a molecular level. In the months that follow, however, Jon’s surviving consciousness learns how to control and manipulate particles and he’s eventually able to reassemble himself into a blue, human-like form. He starts going by the name Doctor Manhattan and uses his god-like powers for the betterment of humanity.

Even before the accident, Jon was an incredibly intelligent man, but, as Doctor Manhattan, his powers of perception and deduction are pretty much unmatched. Being able to observe the past, present, and future simultaneously, he’s about as Omniscient as they come. He’s able to disassemble and replicate himself at a moment’s notice too and is also capable of reassembly in the event that his physical form is somehow destroyed.

9 Thanos (Marvel Comics)

MCU fans should already be fairly familiar with Thanos, with the mad Titan having served as the main antagonist during the final phase of the Infinity Saga. With the help of the Infinity Stones, he’s able to eradicate life with just a snap of his fingers, making him an incredibly effective villain. As comic book readers will already know though, there’s much more to Thanos than just a fistful of magic gems.

Though he isn’t immortal in the traditional sense, Thanos will always come back from the dead due to him having been banned from Death’s realm. He’s also incredibly agile for his size and backs this up with a healthy dose of superhuman strength. These attributes have helped him to conquer countless realms and planets, though it is perhaps worth noting that Thanos’ motivations aren’t always evileven if they are misguided a lot of the time.

8 Darkseid (DC Comics)

In many ways, Darkseid is DC Comics’ answer to Thanos, with the sadistic tyrant even sharing a similar design. The biggest difference, however, is that Darkseid is actually a god who is able to control the will of any sentient race with the help of his Anti-Life Equation. This alone would make him an incredibly powerful villainbut he has plenty of other powers and abilities hidden up his sleeves as well.

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As well as superhuman speed and strength, Darkseid is incredibly intelligent and is able to fire concentrated energy beams. He’s also immortal and is able to walk away from cataclysmic explosions with barely a scratch on him. Even when he does get injured he can recover quickly, as evidenced by his ability to regain his eyesight after being blinded by Aquaman and Wonder Woman.

7 Lucifer Morningstar (DC Comics)

Lucifer Morningstar is one of several depictions of Satan to have appeared in DC comic books over the years. Unlike his predecessors though, he’s an incredibly well-fleshed-out character and one of the most powerful comic book characters in existence. Among his many abilities are Omniscience, Omnipresence, and, for all intents and purposes, Omnipotence, making him one of the strongest DC characters around.

Rather than Hell, however, Lucifer can typically be found hanging out in his trendy LA piano bar Lux, which serves as his base of operations. Almost everything that the fallen archangel does in the comics is self-serving, though Lucifer does have his own twisted moral code. He never fails to keep his word, he refuses to lie, and he always pays back his debts when they’re called in.

6 Adam Warlock (Marvel Comics)

Adam Warlock has always been an incredibly powerful character, but it was not until he became the new Living Tribunal that he really hit the big time. This all came about after the original Living Tribunal was destroyed by the Beyonders, an invading force from outside the Multiverse. Warlock then absorbed the essence of the Living Tribunal and struck a deal with God that saw him replace it.

As the new Living Tribunal, Warlock is God’s representative in the multiverse and the personification of Omnipotence and Multiversal law. This makes him more powerful than the likes of Eternity, Infinity, and Oblivion and allows him to completely nullify the powers of the Infinity Stones. It’s not quite enough to make him the strongest Marvel character of all time, but he does come awfully close.

5 The Beyonder (Marvel Comics)

The Beyonders are an alien race that originated from a dimension that exists somewhere outside the Multiverse, the strongest of whom is known as the Beyonder. With the help of their Cosmic Cubes, the Beyonders able to alter the very fabric of reality and often use this ability to interfere with events taking place in other universes. They also created the Molecule Man, a powerful being that served as a singularity across every version of reality.

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At their strongest, The Beyonders are nigh-unstoppable, as evidenced by their ability to kill Eternity, Infinity, and the Celestials in every version of reality as well as every member of the Multiversal Avengers. However, the biggest scalp taken by the Beyonders is undoubtedly that of the Living Tribunal, an Omnipotent force that serves as God’s representative in the Multiverse.

4 The Decreator (DC Comics)

Not to be confused with Lucifer, who is his own unique entity within the DC universe, the Decreator is a cosmic entity that serves as the shadow of God. As its name might suggest, its primary goal is to undo creation and eradicate existence by making matter spontaneously disappear. This makes it the Antigod of the DC universe and one of the most powerful comic book characters of all time.

The Decreator is so powerful, in fact, that it cannot be completely defeated, meaning that the total eradication of the Omniverse is inevitable given enough time. However, in volume 2 of Doom PatrolCrazy Jane figures out a way to drastically slow the Decreator down to the point where its actions become more or less unnoticeable over shorter periods of time.

3 Mother (Image Comics)

Mother is a mysterious entity that appears sporadically throughout Image Comics’ Spawn series in order to help and guide the titular Hellspawn. Despite its name, Mother is considered to be neither male nor female, though sometimes did appear as the Man of Miracles prior to a copyright dispute. In this form, it has demonstrated unmatchable levels of knowledge and wisdom, making it an invaluable resource for Spawn.

As well as being all-knowing, Mother has all of the same powers as a god too. In fact, God and Satan are just two of its many children and were entrusted with the planet earth after disappointing Mother with their incessant squabbling. Though it is undoubtedly one of the most powerful comic book characters around, it’s difficult to compare Mother with non-Spawn characters due to the smaller scale of the Image Comics universe.

2 The Presence (DC Comics)

The Presence serves as the ultimate creator within the DC universe, with many people likening the character to God. After starting out as little more than a flickering light in the great darkness, the Presence eventually created the Omniverse and everything within it. Its powers appear to be limitless, though it does have a few small chinks in his armor.

In issue #127 of Hellblazer, John Constantine is able to trick the Presence into believing that he had sold his soul to the devil, leading to the latter providing Constantine with divine protection. Granted, this interaction does little to detract from the notion that the Presence is all-powerful, though it does call into question whether it is really all-knowing, which is arguably one of The most vital tools in a supreme being’s arsenal.

1 The One Above All (Marvel Comics)

The One Above All is effectively the Marvel equivalent of The Presence only without the weakness, making him the most powerful comic book character of all time. He’s responsible for the creation of the entire Multiverse and he continues to watch over it and everyone within it to this day. His vast knowledge and Omnipotence are unrivaled, securing his status as the Marvel universe’s supreme being.

First introduced in issue #511 of Fantastic FourThe One Above All sometimes shares a likeness with Jack Kirby, who is widely considered to be one of the most influential figures in Comic Book history. Interestingly, the character’s dark side, the One Below All, effectively serves as one of Marvel Comics’ depictions of the devil, suggesting that the concept of duality extends to supreme beings as well as mortals.

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