A high percentage of the world's population has parent issues on some level, and these hang-ups are only magnified when mom and dad happen to be superheroes, deities, or cosmic villains with universe-domination ambitions.
That's often the reality of being a famous comic book character, and it comes as little surprise that many of them have come to blows with their legal guardians, occasionally with the fate of all existence at stake.
Heroes and villains from the Marvel Universe, the world of DC Comics, and beyond have met their superpowered parents in battle, some more than once, and there are times when the consequences have been devastating, and even fatal for some.
As Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back famously proved, parent-versus-offspring showdowns have the potential to make a story. Emotions run high, everyone involved is fraught with conflict, and this tends to rub off on the viewer or reader.
Several comic book movies have taken a page out of George Lucas' book and pitted a hero against a parental figure with the hope of emulating Empire's stakes, and the results have been mixed.
Although few stories have come close to hitting the same heights as the Skywalker-on-Skywalker struggle, comic book writers and movie directors within the bustling superhero genre have always used family disputes as a means of dialling up the drama, and this trope isn't going anywhere.
So, here are the 15 Heroes Who Were Forced To Fight Their Superpowered Parents.
15 Gamora Vs. Thanos
The Marvel Universe's resident Mad Titan Thanos took Gamora under his wing while she was a child and raised her as a living weapon. Although her adoptive father showed her little kindness over the years, she did his bidding until the events of the Infinity Gauntlet storyline.
During this cosmic crossover event, Thanos emerged as the greatest threat to the universe and, upon realizing this, Gamora turned against the galactic warlord.
She teamed up with Captain Mar-Vell, Drax, and the Avengers in an attempt to take down the villain, but became a casualty of war.
That, however, wasn't the end of Gamora's adventures. Her essence endured inside the Soul Stone and it wasn't long before she became a regular fixture in the mainline Marvel Universe once again. Characters rarely stay dead in comic books, especially when hit movies boost their popularity.
14 Quicksilver Vs. Magneto
It's hardly shocking that Wanda and Pietro Maximoff, aka Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver, have lined up on the opposite side of the battlefield to dear old dad Magneto on more than one occasion. The Avenger siblings left villainy behind a long time ago, while the Master of Magnetism is often found in the thick of it.
Quicksilver found himself in his father's firing line in the 2005 Marvel series House of M, in which the speedy mutant manipulates his mentally-unhinged sister into using her magic to create a world where Magneto rules supreme.
When Erik Lehnsherr gets wind of his son's timeline tinkering, he flies into a rage, and it's Pietro who feels the brunt of his anger. Even Quicksilver's lightning-fast feet couldn't save him during this confrontation, which comes to a head when Magneto crushes him beneath the body of a Sentinel.
13 The Hulk Vs. David Banner
Daddy issues are a running theme across every incarnation of the Incredible Hulk. The abuse that a young Bruce Banner suffered at the hands of his cruel father, Brian, is a contributing factor to his smouldering rage in the original comics, and in Ang Lee's divisive 2003 movie, it's a similar story.
Lee merged the Brian character with Hulk villain the Absorbing Man in order to create David Banner, the movie's main antagonist, played by Nick Nolte.
He's supposed to be a somewhat tragic character-- a genetics researcher driven to the point of madness by his failed attempts to cure his son's green-coloured affliction.
Hulk's climactic scene find the Green Goliath and his absorbing dad locked in battle, a slugfest that ends with the villain perishing after sucking in more gamma radiation than he can handle. Family disputes are rarely pretty, but the ugliest thing about this one was the hideous CGI effects.
12 Equinox Vs. Scarabus
Equinox's origins are the stuff of bad daytime TV. The DC Comics character is the impregnated son of Superman's biological cousin, Kara Zor-L -- better known as Power Girl -- and he was conceived using the magical genetic material of the evil Scarabus by the mages of Atlantis.
Their intention was to create an ultimate champion by combining the powers of light and darkness.
To say they succeeded is a stretch, as Equinox isn't what you'd call a popular DC character. The Kryptonian hasn't appeared or been referenced since 1996 and is widely believed to have been retconned out of continuity.
He did, however, have one moment in the spotlight, meeting Scarabus in battle during an issue of Justice League of America and destroying him to fulfil an Atlantean prophecy.
11 Soranik Vs. Sinestro
Soranik Natu had many obstacles to overcome when she was selected to join the Green Lantern Corps. When you're the offspring of the evil Thaal Sinestro, there are certain preconceptions to challenge before the universe can accept you as a champion for justice.
Natu and her father's ideological differences have put them on a collision course on a number of occasions, notably during the events of the Sinestro Corps War storyline.
In this 2007 event, Sinestro returned to his homeworld of Korugar to establish how well protected it was under his daughter's watch.
At this point, Natu was unaware of her parentage, and the pair clashed in a shower of yellow and green sparks. Sinestro was the eventual victor but he ultimately spared his offspring's life, confident that she would eventually fulfil her destiny as "the Savior of Korugar."
10 Nightcrawler Vs. Mystique
The X-Men's resident Catholicism enthusiast Nightcrawler met his mother Mystique for the first time in adulthood during the seminal Days of Future Past comic book storyline, and they didn't exactly get off on the right foot.
The pair lined up on opposite sides of the battlefield when the X-Men squared off against the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants in Washington DC.
After the two groups had fought to stalemate, Nightcrawler confronts Mystique and remarks on their physical similarities. The shape-shifting villainess rebuffs her son's questions, telling him to direct them to his foster mother, Margali Szardos, before disappearing.
It would be many years before the true nature of Kurt Wagner and Raven Darkholme's connection was revealed, and even longer before the identity of his father came to light.
9 Star-Lord Vs. Ego
Most family issues pale in comparison to those facing Peter Quill in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. It isn't every day that you find out your father is a sentient planet whose sole purpose in life is to spread his essence across the universe until everything in existence is an extension of his being.
The fact that his dad has the ability to transform into David Hasselhoff did little to soften the blow.
Although Star-Lord and his long-lost dad initially hit it off, Ego the Living Planet's omnicidal ways eventually see him fall afoul of his son and his Guardian buddies, paving the way for an epic battle in the final act.
Quill eventually defeats his father.
He does this with the help of Groot by obliterating his brain using a bomb rigged up by Rocket Raccoon.
8 Legion Vs. Professor X
Being the son of one of the Marvel Universe's greatest minds comes with its own set of pressures, and David Haller was in no fit state to handle them, given that he had his fair share of other problems to contend with when his latent mutant abilities began to develop.
By the time the Legion Quest event gets underway, Professor Charles Xavier's son is in a better state of mind, and he takes it upon himself to complete his father's life's work. From his point of view, this involves assassinating Magneto before he can rise to power.
One time hop later, Legion is about to ram a psychic knife into the magnetic mutant's skull, but his father -- who is still on good terms with Magneto in this timeline -- comes between them.
The energy blade intended for Erik Lehnsherr ends up embedded in Professor X's skulls and a mutant apocalypse is triggered. Nice work, David.
7 Orion vs. Darkseid
There aren't many beings in the DC Universe with enough power -- and guts --,to go toe to toe with the near-immortal Darkseid. In this regard, his estranged son Orion is a rare breed. Not only has he battled his father, but he's even defeated him.
Orion travelled to Apokolips and fought Darkseid for control of the planet with the best intentions.
Possessing the Anti-Life Equation, the New God had the power to bring peace to the universe, and he set about doing just that after besting Darkseid in combat.
Turning Earth into a utopia was next on his to-do list, but this benevolent act ends up throwing the universe off balance.
It turns out that Darkseid allowed his son to defeat him in order to understand the power of the Anti-Life Equation. It was a classic "everything you've done has played straight into my hands" move.
6 Ravager Vs. Deathstroke
Deathstroke's daughter Rose Wilson, one of several DC characters to take on the identity of Ravager over the years, has a love-hate relationship with her father.
Although they have affection for one another, her on-off membership with the Teen Titans and Slade Wilson's manipulative ways have frequently seen them come to blows.
Familial tension boiled over during the Blackest Night crossover event when Rose tracked down her father so that they could resolve their differences in armed combat.
A fierce battle ensues, but is cut short when their resurrected relatives Grant, Wade, and Adeline -- returned to life by the Black Lanterns' meddling -- show up and enter the fray.
Rose ends up reluctantly saving her father's life during the skirmish with the undead Wilsons, but refuses to reconcile with him in the aftermath, despite acknowledging her daughterly love. Let's face it, all families have issues.
5 Aqualad Vs. Aquaman
Aqualad is basically the deep-sea equivalent of Robin, and just like Batman, Aquaman has had a few issues with his sidekick over the years. The most famous example came in 1977's Adventure Comics #452, though none of it was the youngster's fault.
In this issue, the villainous Black Manta had captured Aquaman, his fledgeling son Aquababy, and Aqualad, and threatened to end the infant's life unless the heroic duo fought it out to the death.
Willing to do anything to save his child, Arthur Curry is willing to mortally wound his sidekick and pierces his arm with his trident as the battle heats up.
Aquaman, of course, eventually finds a way out of the whole mess, but as this was the gritty Bronze Age of comic books, there were dark, disturbing consequences. Aquababy perishes and Aqualad cuts ties with his mentor in the wake of their clash.
4 Invincible Vs. Omni-Man
It isn't just Marvel and DC superheroes who have been forced to square off against their folks. In Robert Kirkman's Image Comics series Invincible, budding superhero Mark Grayson discovers that his crimefighting dad isn't all he seems to be, and almost loses his life for defying him.
Grayson's father Omni-Man starts out as a grittier version of Superman, complete with a kick-butt moustache, but it later transpires that he's part of an intergalactic race of space Nazis with plans to enslave the Earth.
Omni-Man gives his superpowered son the chance to join the cause, and when he refuses, the pair engage in battle.
The resulting scrap leaves Grayson beaten within an inch of his life and, horrified and disgusted by his own actions, Omni-Man flees the planet. Not only is Omni-Man a fascist, but he's also a really terrible dad.
3 Vision Vs. Ultron
Although Vision isn't the offspring of Ultron per se, the Android occupies a synthetic Vibranium shell crafted by the villain -- a vessel Ultron originally created as the perfect body for himself.
There's an argument to say that the villain had a hand in the development of Vision's physical form, which makes him a co-creator.
In Avengers: Age of Ultron, that hunk of Vibranium became a tide-turning weapon in the hands of the heroes once combined with an Infinity Stone, Thor's lightning, and Tony's Stark's JARVIS technology to create Vision.
Vision is exactly the kind of guy you want on your side when an evil robot threatens life as we know it, as there are few things he cannot do.
He's even worthy enough to wield Thor's hammer. There's something poetic about the fact that he is the one to deliver the deathblow to Ultron's final body, vanquishing his creator of sorts for good.
2 Raven Vs. Trigon
When Raven came to the realization that her father is a personification of dark energies that have existed since the DC Universe’s inception, she did the only sensible thing and teamed up with a gang of superheroes to take him out.
With the help of the Teen Titans (presumably the Justice League were busy), she managed to trap Trigon in an interdimensional prison, though that wasn't quite enough to sever the demon overlord's influence on her.
It wasn't until she unleashed an army of disembodied spirits from the Azarath dimension on her father that his dark presence was finally purged from her psyche.
A group of Trigon's offspring, known as the Sons of Trigon, later found their way to Earth and sought revenge on behalf of their father, but the Teen Titans were able to defeat them with the help of Raven, now a full-time member of the group.
1 Robin Vs. Batman
It can't be easy having Batman as your father figure, since the guy has even more issues than he's appeared him. Although he and Robin are the original dynamic duo, his relationship with his protégés is often strained when they fail to follow his teachings to the letter.
Fourth Boy Wonder Damian Wayne, the Dark Knight's biological son with Talia al Ghul, knows this better than most, not least because his killer instincts clash horribly with Batman's non-lethal brand of crimefighting.
The pair often collide when fighting side by side, and their turbulent relationship is explored in the animated movie Batman vs. Robin.
In the movie, Damian almost ends the life of his father when he attempts to sever the boy's ties with the Court of Owls.
As is the case in most families, the father-son-duo usually reconcile after they clash, but don't expect them to see eye to eye on matters of crime and punishment anytime soon.
Can you think of any other heroes who had to fight their superpowered parents? Sound off in the comment section!