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In the world of superhero comics, there is an age-old question: who would win — Marvel's heroes or DC's? This issue has caused discord among fans for years and sometimes the companies themselves have gotten in on it. This was most notable at Marvel during Stan Lee's time and Joe Quesada's, who stoked the fires of this friendly rivalry.

It's one of those questions that will probably never have a satisfactory answer, but fans can review the tales of the tape, or page, as it were. Heroes in both the Marvel and DC Universe have distinct advantages. By looking at them with a discerning eye, fans can determine a concrete victor.

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Updated on October 12, 2023 by David Harth: Marvel Vs. DC is an age old question. Over the years, fans have debated this question forever. Each universe has amazing heroes, their skills and powers able to make a difference in battles against the worst villains imaginable. Marvel and DC heroes both have advantages over the other, and make a battle between the two universes of heroes an interesting thought experiment.

Marvel Vs. DC: Marvel Wins

The Hulks Have Flabbergasting Power

split image: faces of General Ross Red Hulk and classic Incredible Hulk rage side by side

The Hulk is an important facet of the Marvel Universe. Despite not really being a superhero, per se, the Hulk has done a lot of good in the world. Few heroes have the experience that the Hulk has in fighting other superheroes, and his potentially infinite strength makes him powerful enough to defeat nearly every hero in the Marvel Universe. Bruce Banner's Hulk also isn't the only Hulk around either. There are several other people with powers just like his.

She-Hulk, Red Hulk, Red She-Hulk, and Brawn all have similar powers to the Hulk. The Hulk's infinite strength potential, invulnerability, and healing factor make him and the other Hulks extremely powerful and potent in battle. Hulks would be devastating in battle against DC's heroes, their power making them harder to beat as the fight goes on.

Marvel's Super-Scientists Have Handled The Greatest Threats

A close up of Iron Man, Hank Pym, and Yellow Jacket from Marvel Comics

Marvel heroes often use science to win. Iron Man and Mister Fantastic are brilliant and have both created technology that's allowed them to defeat alien races and cosmic beings. When readers factor in heroes like Moon Girl and Hank Pym, Marvel's super scientists become an unbeatable corps of intelligent polymaths ready for anything.

Marvel super scientists are used to dealing with mind-boggling threats and defeating them. It's scary to think about characters like Iron Man, Mister Fantastic, Hank Pym, Moon Girl and more putting their heads together to take on a threat. DC's power levels are basically higher, but Marvel's super scientists have the skills to cut that power advantage down to size.

The Spider-Verse Gives Marvel Muscle And Skill

A Spider-Verse image shows Miles Morales unite various Spider-Man variants

The Spider-Verse of heroes show the depth and breadth of what Spider-Men can do. Spider-Man and those with similar powers aren't exactly the most powerful heroes out there, but they make up for it with skill and defense. Spider-Verse heroes don't win fights because they overpower their enemies, but because they're smarter and faster. This makes them a wild card in a battle against DC's heroes.

Spider-Man and his multiversal brothers and sisters can run through nearly other force of similarly powerful and skilled heroes. Their resourcefulness makes them a dangerous force in battle. A group of Spiders can figure out how to beat most enemies, and would wreak havoc on DC's heroes in battle.

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The Cosmic Marvel Heroes Are Ridiculously Powerful

An image of Nova and the Super Skrull in Marvel Comics

One place where Marvel has always had an advantage over DC is its cosmic heroes. DC has the heroes of New Genesis, powerful gods all. Compare one of them to the Silver Surfer or Cosmic Ghost Rider, who control the fundamental energy of the cosmos and can rearrange matter itself, and suddenly Orion doesn't seem quite so fearsome.

Cosmic Marvel is full of amazing heroes, frequently facing down threats to the universe that are pretty much unprecedented in the DC Universe. The power curve in the DCU is often much higher, but Cosmic Marvel has a lot of advantages.

Factions Like The Inhumans And Eternals Have A Variety Of Powers

A split image featuring the Inhumans, Eternals, and the Hulk from Marvel Comics

Marvel and DC both have families of heroes, but Marvel handles this concept differently. Whereas DC hero families all share the same powers, Marvel families are more like factions; each group comprises related individuals with remarkably different powers. The Inhumans and Eternals are some of Marvel's best examples.

The Inhumans have a variety of powers, and are led by Black Bolt, a powerful hero who can control electrons. Add to that Karnak's tactical skill and the Inhumans are extremely hard to beat, even when they're up against foes who are more powerful. The Eternals were created by the Celestials and have amazing powers, in addition to being practically unstoppable.

Scarlet Witch And Doctor Strange Lead An Impressive Magic Corps

A compilation of images of the best magic users in Marvel Comics

Marvel's magic heroes might not be their most well-known faction, but Marvel has a host of powerful mystic heroes. Scarlet Witch's powers are well-established, as are Doctor Strange's, but magic users like Wiccan, Brother Voodoo, and Agatha Harkness aren't slouches either.

That's not even counting the various mutant magic users like Magik, Pixie, and Rictor. These magical defenders have faced down some of the most dangerous threats imaginable and always won. Their skill and power have made the difference in many battles, and they are among Marvel's most feared and respected heroes.

The Avengers Are A Fighting Force Like No Other

An image of the largest Avengers roster in Marvel Comics.

The Avengers are known as Earth's Mightiest Heroes for good reason. The team has combined the most powerful champions into a potent fighting force that's handled everything the cosmos threw at Earth.

Leaders like Captain America, Black Panther, the Wasp, and many more have turned the Avengers into a powerful and cohesive unit. The Avengers have won intergalactic wars, tackled evil gods, and defeated genocidal androids. They represent a martial force like no other and would be more than a match for many DC teams.

The Mutants Have Every Power Imaginable

Professor X leading the X-Men on Krakoa in Marvel Comics' Dawn of X

Mutantkind gives Marvel a big advantage in the war between heroes. Marvel's most powerful mutants are world-shaking powerhouses, can literally bring life to Mars by working together, have come up with a method for immortality, and can alter reality itself. Additionally, Marvel's telepaths — led by Xavier, Jean Grey, and Emma Frost — remain mostly unmatched by anyone in the DC Universe.

Throw in other powerful mutants like Cyclops, Wolverine, and Colossus, and the mutants represent a fighting force that would devastate many of DC's heroes in ways they've never thought possible. Marvels mutants are especially dangerous now, united under the banner of Krakoa.

RELATED: Marvel is in Desperate Need of More International Superhero Teams - Here's Why

Marvel Vs. DC: DC Wins

DC's Teen Heroes Are More Powerful And Skilled Than Many Of Marvel's Adult Heroes

Images of the Teen Titans YA novels, Geoff Johns' Teen Titans and New Teen Titans: Games.

DC has created the best sidekicks and teen heroes in comics. These young heroes learn from the best heroes out there and have created superteams like the Teen Titans, Young Justice, and the Legion of Superheroes. They have skills and powers that put them in the upper echelons of their superhero communities and many of them could overpower even adult Marvel heroes.

DC's greatest sidekicks aren't just powerful, but they understand teamwork. They've been taught to work with their mentors and each other, which makes them much more potent in battle than their young ages make them seem. DC's teen heroes work together very well and have the power and skill to make a difference in any battle.

The Shazam Family Don't Get The Credit For How Formidable They Are

Billy Batson sharing his power with the Shazam Family from DC Comics

Shazam has a long, fruitful history. The Wizard Shazam has spent millennia powering protectors of heroes, and the modern champions of Shazam are among the most powerful and skilled ever. Billy Batson, his sister Mary, their friend Freddy, and the rest of the Shazam family are the best of the best, and could easily vie with the most powerful heroes and villains out there. The variety of powers that each member of the Shazam Family have make them nearly as potent as even the Superman family.

What makes Shazam and the rest of the family so great is their tenacity. Shazam never gives up, and the rest of the Shazam Family follows his example. Shazam and Mary are the most formidable members of the family, both having been members of the greatest superhero team out there. The Shazam Family can take on any foe and figure out a way to win.

DC's Heroes Work Together Better Than Marvel Heroes

Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman lead the charge of the heroes of the DC Universe

DC has a lot of advantages over Marvel's heroes, but the one that is really the most important is their ability to work together. Marvel's heroes are great, but they have factions that don't really mix well. The X-Men and Avengers don't get along at all, and individual Marvel heroes have grudges against others that make it very difficult for them to work together. There have been multiple events that have pit Marvel heroes against each other, and there's a lot of bad blood.

DC heroes are completely different. They work together extremely well. There are some problems between DC heroes, but they can put all of that aside when it comes to battle. DC's heroes have worked together against multiversal shaking threats, and unlike Marvel's heroes, they don't need to fight each other before realizing there's bigger threat they need to team up against.

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The Green Lantern Corps And The Guardians Of The Universe Are Potent

An image of the Green Lantern Corps from DC Comics

One place where DC can match Cosmic Marvel heroes is with the Green Lantern Corps and the Guardians of the Universe. The Corps is one of the most potent heroic forces in comics, with thousands of highly skilled officers all wielding the most powerful weapon in the universe. The Oan Guardians of the Universe are cauldrons of cosmic energy and are nigh unstoppable as a group.

The Green Lantern Corps can vie with Marvel's space heroes through sheer numbers alone and the Corps' most skilled members would be a challenge even for Marvel's most powerful heroes. If the Oans themselves got involved, it would spell defeat for the marvelous heroes.

The Flash Family Is Unmatched

An image of The Flash Family Reunion from DC Comics

Both universes have speedsters, but DC's speedsters are infinitely more powerful. The Speed Force is a multiversal constant and an important force in DC's reality. Those who are touched by it can reach speeds and use powers that their Marvel counterparts can't come close to mimicking.

Marvel has some speedsters who can conceivably match a Flash's speed, like Makkari, but they don't have the additional powers that come with the Speed Force. Most Flash Family members are powerful enough to take down teams of Marvel heroes solo, and there are many members in this family.

DC's Magic Heroes Are Better Defined And More Powerful

An image of various heroes from DC Comics series, Justice League Dark

Magic users like Scarlet Witch, Wiccan, and Doctor Strange are powerful, but none of them could deal with the Spectre. As the literal Spirit of Vengeance for the Presence, aka the One Above All, Spectre could devastate any of Marvel's magic users with a thought, using their own wrongdoing against them. That's only the beginning for DC's magic corps.

Zatanna, Black Alice, Doctor Fate, and John Constantine are some of the greatest magic-users in comics. There's also Enchantress, the Shazam Family and Black Adam, the Phantom Stranger, Mr. E, Dr. Occult, and the Demon Etrigan, all powerhouses in their own right. DC's greatest magic users bring so much power to DC's side of the magical divide that Marvel's magic users wouldn't stand a chance.

The Justice League Are Unmatched

Superman, Wonder Woman, and the Justice League from DC's Dark Crisis event.

The Justice League is the greatest assembly of heroes in the DC Multiverse. They're more than just an army of powerful superheroes. They're a team whose members can handle just about any threat solo, and they become unbeatable when united. Sure, the Avengers can fight with the best of them, but the Justice League is better than the best.

The Justice League have dealt with threats that take more than just power to beat, although they have power in spades. Members like Superman, Firestorm, Captain Atom, and the Flashes make the League nearly unbeatable. They also boast the smartest heroes imaginable, scientists and strategists who specialize in pulling victory from the jaws of defeat.

The Superman Family Is Pretty Much Unstoppable

An image collage of different members of the Superman family, including Supergirl, Superman, Lois Lane, Jon Kent, and Connor Kent from DC Comics

DC's various factions are powerful, but none can match the Superman Family. Every one of them is formidable, and they all have Superman as a role model. There are few groups of heroes in the Marvel or DC Universe that have the mixture of powers Kryptonians sport, and if they do, they definitely aren't on Superman's level.

The Marvel heroes won't be able to exploit the Superman Family's weaknesses very well. Trying to plan for heroes with Superman's powers is difficult, especially when there's a team of them running around at superspeed and smashing everyone in their way.

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Marvel Vs. DC: Who Would Win?

DC Is Going To Blitz The Marvel Heroes

An image of Superman with the entire Justice League gathered behind him in DC Comics

While the Marvel and DC's heroes are pretty evenly matched in some places, DC's would prove too powerful for Marvel's superteams to handle. Beyond the fact that DC's heroes are overall more powerful, they have many advantages. From magic-users to Kryptonians to the Flash Family, Marvel can't match DC's power.

Even Marvel's mutants would fall against a concerted assault from a team of Flashes. Marvel's heroes taking on DC's heroes would be a universe-shaking battle fans would love to see, but in the end, DC is walking away as the victor.