The big two comic book publishers, Marvel and DC, have plenty of heroes and villains with similar abilities. So similar, in fact, that many fans spend countless hours talking about what would happen if these comic book characters with similar advantages ever got into a fight: Superman vs. Hulk; Aquaman vs. Namor; Batman vs. Captain America; Green Arrow vs. Hawkeye. These are just a few of the many matches that are frequently debated.
While they may not be common, there have been a number of Marvel and DC crossover comics over the years. These gave fans the chance to finally witness what could happen if Batman took on Captain America or if Wolverine went toe-to-toe with Lobo. (Spoiler alert: Wolverine won, but the verdict was determined by votes.) There are thousands of unexplored possibilities for great Marvel vs. DC matches, from rivalries between characters with similar powers and skills, to battles between heroes and villains who bring totally different strengths and weaknesses to the encounter.
While many of the common pairings (e.g. Superman vs. Hulk; Batman vs. Captain America; Thor vs. Captain Marvel) are fun to discuss and have plenty of room for debate, we took time to think about 13 Marvel vs. DC fights we’d love to see that haven’t already occurred in a crossover. We’re not just thinking “who would win in a fight?” We’re also thinking about what could happen if these two individuals were at odds in a story. So, while a traditional, random encounter scenario may not be completely fair for some of these matches, we think there’s a lot of room in a plot to make the fights interesting. Again, since there are countless possible matches that haven’t been spotlighted, we encourage you to chime in with your own crossover ideas too.
Punisher vs. Red Hood (Jason Todd)
Frank Castle, a.k.a. the Punisher, is a highly trained soldier who will stop at nothing to kill criminals. He’s a brutal hand-to-hand combatant with a sharp tactical mind and he almost always brings plenty of firearms to a fight. Jason Todd, a.k.a. Red Hood, was trained by Batman and has become an agile, clever, and violent vigilante. Both are vicious anti-heroes and a fight between the two would undoubtedly be a bloody and explosive encounter.
When the guns are out of ammo and the explosions have gone off, this would without question come down to a savage and harsh close-quarters fight. Todd is more agile and debatably has better technique, but Castle’s pain tolerance is unmatched and he has blunt yet effective melee methods. Who will be the one walking away from this fight? Flip a coin, but no matter who wins, it would definitely be one heck of a ferocious battle.
Lex Luthor vs. Iron Man
Lex Luthor, the brilliant mind behind LexCorp, or Tony Stark, the former CEO of Stark Industries and longtime member of the Avengers? Both characters are very intelligent and gifted inventors, but what would happen if these two existed in the same world? We imagine there’s not enough room on the same planet for Stark Industries and LexCorp, especially if Lex wants to eliminate Tony, and Tony’s suspicious of Lex. Could Lex outsmart Tony, though?
While Tony has the better armor, Lex has proven to be more cunning. After all, Lex is all about finding his enemy’s weakness, so could he compromise Stark’s wide variety of tech? If these two stepped into their favorite armors and decided to duke it out, odds are Stark would take that battle – his armors have more impressive displays of durability, speed, strength, and offer more variety. However. Lex isn’t the kind of opponent who regularly agrees to a “fair” fight – he studies his opponents and finds ways to give himself an extra advantage. In this case, it’s very possible the biggest strike could be done behind the scenes; something to make Stark’s tech turn on him or fail him. No matter how the fight goes down, this conflict between two wealthy geniuses has a whole lot of story potential.
Captain Marvel (Carol Danvers) vs. Supergirl
Carol Danvers, a.k.a. Captain Marvel, will be the first heroine to receive her own Marvel Studios movie. Meanwhile, Kara Zor-El, a.k.a. Supergirl, is receiving her own TV series on CBS. Both powerful characters will soon gain a notable boost in popularity, but what would happen if they found themselves at odds? Carol is more experienced, plus her energy projectile and absorption powers make her even more formidable, but just like Kara’s cousin Superman, Supergirl is a titan when exposed to the Earth’s yellow sun.
Thanks to their great strength and durability, this aerial skirmish has the potential to leave the planet’s atmosphere or send the two tumbling into mountains. There’s going to be a staggering amount of tremendous punches thrown and neither of these heroines are going down without putting up an amazing fight. When the dust finally settles, it would be one epic slugfest regardless of the winner.
Batman vs. Black Panther
When comic readers think of Bruce Wayne, a.k.a. Batman, facing someone from Marvel, Captain America (Steve Rogers, of course) often comes to mind. While that would be an excellent fight – one which has happened in crossovers – we believe a fight between the Dark Knight and T’Challa, a.k.a. Black Panther, would be downright awesome. Both heroes are incredibly intelligent tacticians, ridiculously skilled hand-to-hand combatants, and they’re both packing a wide variety of technology on their side.
For Bruce Wayne, not only does he have his signature costume – which provides some degree of protection – but he also has a stunning amount of gadgets. Whether it’s a simple smoke pellet or a barrage of small explosives, Batman is regularly prepared for whatever obstacle he may encounter. Black Panther may not have as many tricks up his sleeve as Batman does, but the few he does have are highly effective. Thanks to a vibranium-weave armor, T’Challa can withstand immense amounts of punishment. He also sports anti-metal claws and energy daggers, both of which are very efficient at slashing and stabbing.
A direct encounter between these two would be well worth the price of admission, but in the end, we hope they’d end up joining forces. Sure, heroes battling over a misunderstanding and then teaming-up has happened countless times before, but watching these two fight as a team after battling one another would be a blast – and a terrible time for whoever’s foolish enough to stand in their way.
Hulk vs. Wonder Woman
Robert Bruce Banner, a.k.a. the Incredible Hulk, claims he’s the strongest there is, but is raw strength enough to defeat Diana Prince, a.k.a. Wonder Woman, a skilled powerhouse from Themyscira and longtime member of the Justice League? Aside from simply being a frightening brute, Hulk’s strength also increases over time – “You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry” – and his accelerated healing factor allows him to take plenty of damage. He may not be a speedster, but he’s not as sluggish as some think. There are more powerful characters in the Marvel Universe – plenty of cosmic characters are absurdly mighty – but the Hulk’s physicality is more than enough to give a vast majority of his opponents trouble.
Diana Prince, a.k.a. Wonder Woman, has what it takes to hold her own against a blood-lusted Superman. Not only does she possess superhuman strength, but her reflexes are superb, she has an amazing ability to withstand blunt force, and she’s a seriously talented melee combatant. To top it off, she has a sword that would harm the Green Goliath and a virtually unbreakable lasso.
Superman vs. Thanos
Kal-El, a.k.a. Superman, is often regarded as one of DC’s most powerful heroes. As if stellar strength, speed, durability, and flight wasn’t enough, Superman’s also blessed with heat vision, freeze breath, X-ray vision, uber-hearing, and several other powers (he recently displayed the ability to unleash all of his energy into one massive blast, too). Thanks to his physical strengths and even stronger drive to do what’s right, Superman has confidently faced some of DC’s most challenging characters, including Darkseid. But what would happen if Superman faced Marvel’s version of Darkseid, Thanos?
Obviously, we’re assuming the Mad Titan wouldn’t have the Infinity Gauntlet – that’s just unfair! Even without the signature gauntlet, Thanos is a villain that few heroes can harm – he’s knocked out the Thing with just a flick and launched Hulk with a strike. No matter how much pain Thanos dishes out, Superman would refuse to quit. Whether or not that level of determination would allow him to eventually defeat Thanos – or even prevent Thanos from getting his big hands on the Infinity Gauntlet again – is something that’s of course up for discussion, and it’s most definitely something we’d want to read. Superman’s looked into the eyes of DC’s most evil villain, so we just can’t help but think about what would happen if the Man of Steel came face to face with Thanos.
Elektra vs. Black Canary
In one corner, we have Elektra Natchios, an assassin who’s quite nimble and a master of kicking all kinds of butt, with or without bladed weapons. In the other corner we have Dinah Laurel Lance, a.k.a. Black Canary, one of the most talented martial artists in the DC Universe and a heroine with the power to unleash the Canary Cry – a sonic blast. Both are enormously skilled and bring different approaches to their battles.
Dinah’s uncanny skill and metahuman ability means she has no issue taking on any challenge head-on and tries to drop her target in a non-lethal fashion. Elektra’s a master of stealth and she’s far more willing to dish out damaging attacks. While Dinah wants to knock out her foe or capture them, Elektra may not hesitate to take them down permanently and won’t mind doing so with a cheap shot. (Elektra took a non-lethal approach in her latest series, but for the most part, she’s willing to go further than Canary.) Canary has the edge in technique, but Elektra’s deadly ways could give her a critical opening as this display of skill and agility unfolds. If Gareth Evans – the mind behind The Raid franchise – could direct this fight, just take our money now.
Joker vs. Deadpool
Yes, Wade Wilson, a.k.a. Deadpool, is much more skilled than Joker in fighting and his agility as well as accelerated healing factor make him insanely difficult to drop, but that doesn’t mean an encounter between these two wouldn’t be all kinds of exciting and hysterical. In character, a conflict between the Merc with a Mouth and the Clown Prince of Crime would be full of entertaining banter – how long would Joker tolerate Wade’s commentary? – and over-the-top violence.
If Joker’s bumping into Wade, he’s not challenging him to a purely hand-to-hand fight. Deadpool may have his signature blades and his assortment of firearms and gear, but Joker’s unpredictability and plethora of weapons would keep things interesting. Who’s to say Joker wouldn’t lure Wade into a fun house or other location that allows him to mess with the Marvel antihero? If Joker knows a bullet to the head won’t stop Deadpool, it’s not far-fetched to think he could have fun finding ways to inflict as much pain as possible against Wade.
In the end, Deadpool’s skill (when he gets serious, he’s extremely dangerous) could be too much for Joker. Either way, with the right creative team handling it, a fight between these two could easily become an unforgettable brawl.
Doctor Doom vs. Sinestro
The imposing and know-it-all ruler of Latveria, or the fearsome and arrogant leader of the Sinestro Corps? These two confident and motivated villains going to war would be a real treat for the fans. They may have similarities in their personalities, but their means of fighting are very different. While Victor Von Doom utilizes a mix of magic and technology, Thaal Sinestro uses a Yellow Power Ring for all of his offensive and defensive attacks. Thaal’s ring offers more options in a direct fight, but if this occurred in a story and Doom had time to prepare for the encounter, this could turn into a jaw-dropping battle between two menacing bad guys.
When all is said and done, the only thing more entertaining than watching these two target each other would be the idea of them joining forces. Whether it’s Doctor Doom with a Yellow Power Ring or a simple agreement to work together, any hero trying to best this duo of fiends is going to need a fair share of luck on their side.
Nightwing vs. Moon Knight
When coming up with Marvel opponents for Dick Grayson, a.k.a. Nightwing, the most obvious choice is Matt Murdock, a.k.a. Daredevil, because they’re both gifted acrobats and they wield two blunt melee weapons. Instead of going for the obvious – but still entertaining – pairing, we think Grayson fighting Marc Spector, a.k.a. Moon Knight, would be especially awesome. They’re both quick, street level vigilantes who use throwing weapons and prefer taking down their targets with punches and kicks up close. That said, their approach is slightly different. Nightwing’s emphasis on agility and technique – he was trained by Batman – allows him to quickly and effectively make his enemies see stars. While Moon Knight is agile and a master of several forms of hand-to-hand combat, he often bests his enemies with a more violent approach. In short, Nightwing’s more nimble and Moon Knight’s more brutal.
The outcome will depend on where the fight takes place (somewhere that will benefit Grayson’s agility or restrict his movements?) and what costume is Moon Knight wearing (he’s worn everything from light armor to carbonadium). No matter how it plays out, this fight won’t end quickly. No matter who wins, they’re both walking away with a whole lot of bruises.
Ghost Rider vs. John Constantine
If these two randomly bumped into each other and decided it was go-time, then Johnny Blaze, a.k.a. Ghost Rider, is going to have the edge over John Constantine. That’s just an unfair setting because the Marvel anti-hero’s a tank – he’s built for fighting powerhouses, so he has incredible strength, durability, and speed, and that chain would be a pain to deal with. Still, Constantine’s quick-witted and resourceful, so he shouldn’t be underestimated – especially if he viewed Ghost Rider as a hindrance to snaring some bigger (and badder) supernatural force.
John’s no stranger to demons and, thanks to his manipulative ways, he could stay one step ahead of Ghost Rider. At some point, these two would need to recognize they’ve got similar goals and their inevitable team-up would be a mystical delight.
Deathstroke vs. Spider-Man
We’re all familiar with the superhuman abilities Peter Parker, a.k.a. Spider-Man, possesses: strength, agility, lightning fast reflexes, and a spider sense that warns him of danger. He’s got a heart of gold and a fist that can shatter concrete – but he always shows restraint unless it’s against a durable foe (e.g. Carnage, Lizard, Tombstone). He may joke around during fights, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he’s a sloppy brawler; he’s no stranger to using the environment or webbing to his advantage. Meanwhile, Slade Wilson, a.k.a. Deathstroke, is one of DC’s most dangerous mercenaries. With enhanced physicality – including a healing factor – incredible skill, and one of the most brilliant tactical minds around, Deathstroke has been able to beat down Batman, hold his own against metahumans, and even (temporarily) elude Superman.
Would you side with Deathstroke’s skill or Spider-Man’s powers? Both are highly effective advantages and it really comes down to who drops the first game changing hit. If Spider-Man sees a direct approach isn’t working, he could lean more heavily on web-slinging and wall crawling – unless Slade gets a read on the hero’s spider-skills and goes for a critical attack. This match has the chance to be a terrific dose of popcorn entertainment.
Bullseye vs. Green Arrow
Two marksmen enter, one marksman leaves.
Lester, a.k.a. Bullseye, is one of the Marvel Universe’s most bloodthirsty assassins. He can use almost anything as a throwing weapon and his aim is dead-on – even when ricocheting his weapons. Lester’s agile, a vicious hand-to-hand fighter (he’s had some brutal throwdowns with Daredevil), and his reflexes are so good he can block a bullet. Additionally, several of his bones are laced with adamantium, including his skull, fists, and spine. Oliver Queen, a.k.a. Green Arrow, is one of the DC Universe’s top marksmen. Highly accurate with his bow, Oliver can unleash a barrage of regular and trick arrows – which range from explosives to sonics – at his enemies. He tries his best not to kill his opponents and he’s benefited from extensive training, so he’s no slouch when it comes to fighting, even without the bow.
Bullseye may not have the same variety of weaponry, but on paper, he’s debatably the more formidable combatant. That said, his ego will be a factor. Bullseye has previously stated that he wouldn’t kill Daredevil with a bullet to the head – because it would be too easy. So, if Bullseye bumped into someone with equally impressive accuracy, it’s logical to believe Lester wouldn’t want to make it swift, he’d try to prolong the fight and make his opponent suffer as much as possible. While he’s having fun, that gives Oliver more than enough time to put his trick arrows to use.
Since the Marvel and DC universes are so vast and full of different heroes and villains, there are plenty of match-ups that have yet to be explored on the comic page. Several crossovers have given fans a look at what could happen – with a few popular pairings; yet, there’s still many A-list and lesser-known individuals that are just begging to square off against someone from the other publishing dimension. So, which Marvel vs. DC fights would you love to see?
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