Sure, there are the big flashy heroes that get all the merchandise and blockbuster movies and cosplayers, but what about the forgotten good guys? We asked our team which superheroes deserved their time to shine. This is the latest in a series of big questions we'll be interrogating our writers with, so share your answers and suggestions for topics with us on Twitter.
"The Power is yours!" Oh Captain Planet, if only you knew then what we're facing now. Sorry to get on a downer, but Captain Planet was already on the war to combat climate change all those years ago. If only we'd listened to the eco-friendly best practices you preached between ad breaks. We wouldn't be having insane weather, facing global extinction, and dealing with leaders who don't think climate change exists, despite all the evidence. Way back then he was battling Eco-villains by the names of Looten Plunder (surely an inevitability of our eventual apocalypse), and Duke Nukem himself, a bad guy who thrives on radiation and toxic waste materials. Mmmm delicious. Now where have I heard that before? Sam Loveridge
Kitty Pryde knows her stuff. Originally her power, which allows her to walk or ‘phase’ through objects, seemed quite unimpressive. But Kitty, because she’s damned intelligent (and a computer genius, by the way), worked on her power in the comics and gradually realized just how much it can do. So she can phase through objects, sure, but she can also pull out people’s hearts by partially phasing into their bodies (ew), destroy electrical objects by phasing through them, take other people with her when she phases, and make herself invulnerable by entering a phase state where projectiles and most attacks can’t hurt her. Plus she figures out how to walk on air and water using her power. And manages to use it to turn herself invisible too. That’s not even the end of the list! Kitty’s understanding of her power and the skill with which she uses it turns an otherwise unremarkable ability into something that makes her enemies constantly underestimate her. Basically, she’s damned awesome and tragically underrated. Zoe Delahunty-Light
When it came to selecting cool weapons Donnie didn’t do himself any favours. While the rest of the squad picked Twin Katanas, nunchucks and Sai’s, big D chose a stick. So, yeah, he was always going to be the turtle that was left in the tartarium when it came to picking a favorite. But without Don the turtles would be nothing. He designs and builds EVERYTHING the turtles need to function as a crime fighting group. The Turtle Van, Turtle Blimp, the hoverboards they use to get around the sewers, even the microwave for Michelangelo’s pizza! Nearly every encounter with whatever big bad is attacking the city needs Don’s skills in one form or another to overcome it. He might just ‘do machines’ as the theme song says but he’s the glue that holds the entire team together. I've had this argument countless times with friends but he's by far the best Ninja Turtle James Jarvis
I’m showing my age here, but clearly the best super hero is the one who transforms into a musclebound, caped crusader the instant he chomps a piece of household fruit. This 1980s ledge was supposed to be a parody, I guess, but that didn’t stop everyone in the playground wishing they could develop similar powers upon discovery of apples or pears or oranges in their lunch box – although to this day I pity the poor classmate who ended up having to be ‘Pruneman'. Bananaman can fly like Superman, exchange fists like Batman, and joust verbally like a Cambridge scholar – largely because he is voiced by a real one, in Tim Brooke-Taylor. He even made the name ‘Eric’ cool. Eric!! (Sorrynotsorry to any Erics reading this.) Criminally denied his own video game during an era where you couldn’t move for £2.99 Spectrum cassettes knocked up in ten minutes, his star burned bright again as recently as last year when a small London theatre produced a dedicated Bananaman musical. God bless you, Southwark Playhouse. Ben Wilson
The Crimson Bolt
"Shut up, crime!" 2010's Super reveals what happens when Dwight from The Office crosses the line from lovable weirdo into full blown sociopath, as James Gunn's twisted subversion of the superhero genre (no, not that twisted subversion) sees Rainn Wilson become a pound shop Punisher as The Crimson Bolt. Wilson's Frank is a down and out nobody who just lost his wife (Liv Tyler) to a crime lord, so he does what any sane person would do and becomes a vigilante with nothing but a metal wrench and an ordination from God as his superpowers. Sure, The Crimson Bolt's methods are a little... antediluvian, cracking people's heads open in broad daylight for queue jumping and whatnot, but his heart's in the right place. When fighting beside Ellen Page as his somehow even crazier sidekick Boltie, this lunatic is a heady cocktail of suppressed anger and red spandex. He's no Superman, but name any other superhero who's mad and brave enough to stare crime right in the face and tell it to shut up. Alex Avard
The Lobster (aka Lobster Johnson)
Hellboy is a delightfully odd fusion of cosmic horror, pulpy action, and irreverent humor (hence the famous "Is that a monkey?" "He's got a gun!" comic panels). The Lobster firmly belongs to the second and third categories. A vigilante ripped straight from pulp comics and low-budget cinematic serials, The Lobster is the scourge of murderous mobsters and nefarious Nazis everywhere. His dual handguns make quick, bloody work of any ne'er-do-well, and before disappearing into the night he always makes time to leave behind his trademark: a scorched lobster claw on the forehead of his targets, left by a glowing-hot brand embedded in his glove. Mild spoiler, but he even keeps killing bad guys and helping out Hellboy and the gang as an enigmatic ghost. Truly there can be no justice greater than The Lobster's claw. Connor Sheridan
I will always and forever love the superhero comedy flick Mystery Men, for a multitude of reasons. It's the film I associate with the godlike anthem that is Smash Mouth's All-Star, serving as the basis for the music video two years before Shrek stepped onto the scene. It's also got an amazing ensemble cast, a lovingly realized metropolis that mixes cyberpunk majesty with modern grime, and a killer soundtrack. But it's the oddball, imperfect, constantly bickering members of the Mystery Men that really make the movie, like Invisible Boy (played by Kel Mitchell of Kenan and Kel) who can only turn translucent when no one's looking at him, or Blue Raja (Hank Azaria), who flings forks and spoons as non-lethal projectiles and refuses to brandish a knife. Everyone on the team gets their chance to shine despite their middling-to-mediocre superpowers, and their costume designs are fantastic. This movie is just the best, and I'll hear nothing to the contrary. Lucas Sullivan
Did we miss your favorite super? Want to blast us with your laser eye-beams for our choices? Let us know on Twitter.