Discussion in 'Comic Books and Graphic Novels' started by netkid, Oct 10, 2011.
When you think about it, what Super Heroes are really awful at their job?
Really any of them because if they really were effective, there would only be about 10 issues and then all the bad guys would be caught/killed/exiled/whatever.
^ Some of that is more the prisons/asylums/whatever not being effective at their job. For example, Batman is fairly good at capturing the Joker, but Arkham can't seem to keep him incarcerated for more than five consecutive minutes. Of course, if Batman really wanted to fix that, he could just use some of Bruce Wayne's resources to help Arkham upgrade their security.
As for a superhero that I think is fairly awful at their job, I'll nominate the Spectre. This is a character who has virtually unlimited power and supposedly a mission to enact vengeance upon criminals. He spends most of his time coming up with creative ways to inflict ironic punishments on human criminals, who've maybe committed a few murders or sex crimes, while ignoring people like the Joker, Lex Luthor, Hank Henshaw, Deathstroke and others that have killed thousands or millions. This is usually given the in-story explanation that the Spectre is acting on a divine plan, because apparently the governing deity of the DC universe is more concerned about punishing some gang member who shot a few people than some supervillain who blew up a city. Out-of-story, obviously, it's because they'd run out of supervillains fairly quickly if the Spectre's priorities were different. About the only time he does kill a supervillain is if the writers need that character out of the way for some reason (ie - Star Sapphire in Infinite Crisis).
Then there's the issue that, despite the Spectre's nigh-omnipotent power levels, he's virtually useless in any major emergency. For almost every Crisis-level event where the Earth/universe is in danger, there's usually some reason that the Spectre can't/won't get involved or he's taken out of the action somehow as way to prove the main villain's power. Examples of the former are Final Night and Zero Hour, while examples of the latter are Infinite Crisis and Blackest Night.
As a counterpoint, one of the Spectre's most badass moments was when he when toe to toe with the Anti-Monitor himself in CoIE, demonstrating just how incredibly powerful he can be against an opponent in that cosmic power level.
The legendary example of course is Reed Richards, a genius scientist - and elastic man - whose inventions either malfunction, get abused, or could really revolutionise life but for whatever reason are never taken forward. There's a reason the TV Tropes page is called "Reed Richards is useless".
Not superheroes, but the recent depiction of the Guardians of the Universe presents them as terrible at their job. Other than Ganthet, seemingly the only one who isn't a complete idiot (besides Sayd, wherever she is), the Guardians just move from one horrible mistake to another. And that's leaving aside the three Guardians who went nuts/evil and became active threats, rather than just being incompetent. It stretches suspension of disbelief that they've managed to successfully guard the universe as long as they have. Luckily, Hal Jordan is around now to be the most awesome sentient being in existence and fix everything they mess up.
Oh, definitely. When the Spectre actually does intervene, and when the writers aren't having him job to the villain, he can be very effective...but that seems to be more the exception than the rule. And I'm not entirely down on the concept behind the Spectre; I think the character would work great as a self-contained, Vertigo series. But in a shared universe where he has to conveniently ignore all the supervillains, it falls apart.
there was a line from are marvel book a few years back, i cant remember it exactly but it was more or less "how many times does the green goblin escape from jail and kill people, before it stops being his fault and starts being spiderman's"
and now its gonna bug me that i cant remember the issue!
Booster Gold. He's supposed to guard the timeline, but he couldn't prevent the DC reboot.
Well remember from the Incredibles when Bob was ranting about thing always going bad in the beginning of the movie?
It's like that.
Realistically it would have to be any hero in a mask who is not deputized by the governing body, foils the plans of a villain and turns them over to police with little to no evidence concerning their crimes, and never testifies against them in court. So Superman, Batman, and Spider-Man are some major culprits. I'll give Batman more credit though because he sets the justice system up to win, it just always seems to fall flat on its face.
That gives me an idea! What if Batman had his own police force?
He does. It's called Batman Incorporated.
Or there was that one time, in Kingdom Come where he had that army of robots that policed Gotham. That seemed to work out okay for him.
Besides Batman Inc. and the robots, expect a lot of ninja's and 12 year olds in tights. But seriously, ninjas.
I think that's like Barbara Gordon getting shot, it's solidified time and cannot be changed.
And i don't know any real bad superheroes but you know who is really really good at his job? The Punisher.
And he also trained a gang of Batmen in Dark Knight Returns / Strikes Again, where he told them he'd teach them not to need guns and then in the next book I guess he got tired of that and they're gunning people down and he's all like "whatever".
Awful Superhero? Aquaman. He does not have a very good track record.
that happened once in brave and bold, there was a gargoyle batman, a western batman, a sumo batman, a brain batman, a spanish batman and a robot batman
Separate names with a comma.