Is This Character a Superhero or a Supervillain?


By: Gavin Thagard

6 Min Quiz

Image: Marvel Studios

About This Quiz

The fire alarm goes off at the bank, smoke rises from the windows, cops are rushing to the scene because they got a call about robbers and those robbers are now fleeing out the side door. Can you separate the superheroes who will knock the door down to save the day from the supervillains who have been running the robbery the whole time? 

Though it may seem obvious when you play out a scenario like the one above, the line between a superhero and supervillain is actually very thin. After all, no great villain believes they are doing wrong and no hero is capable of doing everything right. When you start to classify them, you realize that there's a lot of gray area left for interpretation. 

Ultimately, the best way to conclude if a character is good or bad is by determining if their actions are harming others more than they are benefiting them. The characters in this quiz all fall somewhere on that scale. Are you up for the challenge of categorizing each of them as a superhero or supervillain?

If you are, get started and see if you know what it really means to fight for the side of good.

Can you recall if Doctor Strange is a superhero or supervillain?

Doctor Strange received his own movie in 2016, which established the character a place in the Marvel Universe and allowed him to appear in "Avengers: Endgame." The character was portrayed by British actor Benedict Cumberbatch.


Is Black Panther a superhero or supervillain?

Starring Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther, this superhero got his own movie in 2018. The film was held in high regard after its release, receiving an Academy Award nomination for Best Picture.


One of the best hand-to-hand fighters around, does Green Arrow fall under the category of hero or villain?

In his early life, Oliver Queen was a party going rich kid who was the heir to Queen Industries. However, after he washed up on a deserted island, he had to survive with only his smarts and a bow and arrow.


Can you say that Shredder is a hero?

After the death of his brother, Shredder joined the Foot Clan, a group of ninjas who operate as an organized crime syndicate. There, he rose to the top of the organization, eventually settling as the leader of the branch located in New York City.


Born into a prominent family, can you say that Penguin uses his wealth for good?

The character of Penguin dates all the way back to 1941 when he appeared in "Detective Comics #58," making him one of the first criminals in Gotham City. Bob Kane was the cartoonist who first illustrated the character for the comic.


A being from another realm, what do you consider Thor to be?

Known as the God of Thunder, Thor's primary weapon is a magical hammer named Mjolnir. This hammer is unique in that only one who is considered worthy is allowed to lift it from the ground.


Batman isn't afraid to throw a person off a building to get information. Does that make him a superhero or supervillain?

Adam West played the billionaire turned crimefighter named Batman in a show that ran from 1966 until 1968. Aimed at a younger audience, the version of Batman that West portrayed incorporated humor and a strong moral code which would be absent from future iterations.


How would you classify Bane?

Bane is one of the few DC characters to defeat Batman in hand to hand combat by breaking his back. The incident occurs during the events of "Batman: Knightfall," a crossover comic book released in 1993.


Do you recognize Doctor Octopus as a superhero or supervillain?

Early in his life, Otto Octavius had an obsession with science, which was fueled by his desire to not be like his abusive father. His obsession led him to create a set of mechanical arms that fused to his body during an accident involving radiation, turning him into Doctor Octopus.


Are you familiar enough with Flash to say he's a superhero or supervillain?

Flash has a mastery over the speed force, which gives him such incredible speed that he can control time itself. But such speed has often been his worst enemy as he learns that messing with the past can cause more problems than solutions.


Seeking a cure for his wife, could you call Mr. Freeze a superhero?

The story of Mr. Freeze is one of tragedy. After cryogenically freezing his wife, Nora, who was terminally ill, Freeze turns to a life of crime to obtain the money to fund his research as he tries to find a cure for her.


Lex Luther is a genius, but has he been using those brains for good?

Lex Luther wasn't always evil, but as time goes on, he begins to see the new wave of alien life on Earth as a danger to humanity. He even views Superman in this light, as Luther constantly looks for a way to bring the "Man of Steel" down.


Is the Green Goblin considered a superhero?

There have been many people who carried the name of the Green Goblin. The first person to suit up as the antagonist was Norman Osborn, a rich businessman who was driven insane after taking a formula that enhanced the power of his mind and body.


Which category does Harley Quinn fall into: superhero or supervillain?

Despite being a supervillain, Harley Quinn is at times a member of the Suicide Squad, which she is forced to join by Amanda Waller. She joins the Squad as part of the DC reboot known as "The New 52," which was first released in 2011.


A creation of Stan Lee, what is Beast?

Beast may seem more like a brute force than a cunning superhero, but that couldn't be more from the truth. He is actually one of the smartest members of the X-Men, and he uses his brain to seek peaceful solutions to problems between humans and mutants.


What type of character is Iron Man?

Tony Stark, better known as Iron Man, is a billionaire engineer who decided to use his money and wealth to fight against the criminals around him. He accomplishes this goal by building an armored suit that gives him the ability to fly, super strength and incredible durability.


Would you consider Thanos a superhero or supervillain?

In the Marvel movies, Thanos' main desire was to find the Infinity Stones, which were spread across the universe. Once he located the stones, he used the stones to wipe out half the universe's population.


Are you familiar enough with Wonder Woman to know if she's a superhero or supervillain?

Wonder Woman finally got her own film in 2017, starring Gal Gadot as the princess of Themyscira. In the film, Wonder Woman combats Ares, who she believes is responsible for starting World War I.


Has Aquaman been on the side that fights criminals or that commits crimes?

Born to a lighthouse keeper and an Atlantean queen, Aquaman rules over Atlantis, a realm located under the sea. With various powers like the ability to talk to fish, Aquaman uses everything at his disposal to protect the seven seas.


Struggling against the evils of humanity, do you believe Ra's al Ghul is a superhero?

Ra's al Ghul is the strongest warrior and leader of the League of Assassins. His ultimate goal as the leader is to create a world with less human destruction, which means he wants to wipe out most of the human population.


A smart mouthed mercenary, can you classify Deadpool as a bad guy?

A product of Marvel Comics, Deadpool is a character who is written as though he's aware that he's in a comic book. With this knowledge, he constantly breaks the fourth wall to talk to the reader directly.


Is the half demon Hellboy a superhero or supervillain?

Hellboy was discovered in 1944 after he was summoned by Grigori Rasputin, a mystic working for the Nazis. However, Hellboy didn't end up in the right location, instead appearing in England where he was found by American soldiers under the command of George Whitman.


Could you classify General Zod as a supervillain?

In the last years of Krypton, General Zod tried to use his influence as the leader of the military to take over the planet. However, he was stopped and cast into a prison known as the Phantom Zone, where he survived the planet's destruction.


Which category does Storm fall under: superhero or supervillain?

Evident by her name, Storm has the ability to control the weather, which she can use for a variety of purposes like flying. One of the most powerful mutants on Earth, she is a senior member of the X-Men.


Do you know if Brainiac uses his mind for acts of evil?

With a cold and calculated demeanor, Brainiac has one goal: obtain all the knowledge of the universe. He uses this knowledge to dominate civilizations before completely destroying them and moving on somewhere else.


Would you classify Magneto as a superhero or supervillain?

Known as the "Master of Magnetism," Magneto is a mutant that has the ability to control magnetic fields. After years of running from humans, Magneto finally decides that mutants are superior to humans and should be protected at all cost.


Daredevil wanders the streets beating people up a night. Would you recognize him as a villain?

Despite being blinded at a young age, Daredevil never let his lack of sight slow him down. In fact, he found ways that it could benefit him, as his other senses became much stronger after he spent time training them.


Deathstroke has made many enemies over the years, but does that make him a bad guy?

Known for his fighting prowess, Deathstroke serves as the main antagonist for the Teen Titans. His confrontation with the Titans begins after the death of his son Ravager, who was trying to complete a contract with the criminal organization H.I.V.E.


Do you know if Loki is considered a superhero?

The character of Loki is based off a god from Norse mythology who carries the same name. Recognized as the son of Farbauti and Laufey, Loki is a trickster who plays a significant role in bringing about the end of the world.


Ozymandias has a differing view on how to save the world. Does that make him a superhero?

Once a heroic member of the Watchmen team, Ozymandias uses his incredibly high IQ to become a billionaire after the superhero group is dismantled. However, he actually has bigger goals as he wants to launch a nuclear catastrophe to unite humanity.


Has Jean Grey done enough bad to be called a supervillain?

Born with telepathic powers, Jean Grey is one of the strongest mutants in the "X-Men" universe. However, she struggles to control those powers, which are fully released after her death and resurrection as Phoenix.


Despite his checkered past, is Gambit fighting for the side of good?

Gambit was kidnapped at birth from his hospital bed by a guild of thieves who thought he would unite their guild with the Assassins Guild. However, this plan fell apart once his marriage to a member of the Assassins Guild went south.


A master of magic, does Black Adam use his powers to fight evil?

Once a hero who was entrusted with magical powers from Shazam, Black Adam allowed that magic to corrupt him. Even after his corruption, Adam doesn't view his actions as evil but instead believes he's working for the good of humanity.


Not one to shy away from using guns, are you willing to say that Punisher is still a hero?

An ex-Marine, Frank Castle, the man who would become Punisher, was involved in several missions that were borderline criminal. These missions got his family murdered once he left the Marines, which started his path towards fighting crime.


The star of Alan Moore's "Watchmen," do you know if Rorschach is a superhero or supervillain?

Though there is an ensemble cast in "Watchmen," Rorschach serves as the narrator in both the graphic novel and movie. In the story, his main goal is to vanquish evil as he views the world only through a black and white lens.


Could you say that Spawn is a supervillain since he made a deal with a demon to come back to life?

Spawn was once a CIA agent named Al Simmons who joined a top-secret ops division. However, he was murdered by the director of the CIA after a falling out, leading to his visit to Hell where he was resurrected as Spawn.


If you ran into Black Canary in an alleyway, would you think she was there to help you or take your money?

Villains who run into the Black Canary might easily fall victim to her beauty and charm. If that doesn't work, though, she also possesses a powerful voice, known as the "Canary Cry," that can blast away those who stand against her.


Is Talia al Ghul thought to be more good than bad?

Talia al Ghul is not only an enemy of Batman, but she's also one of his lovers at various times. With the goal of using Batman's genes to create the ultimate fighting weapon, she has a son with him named Damian Wayne.


Does Mystique work as a superhero or a supervillain?

Naturally blue by appearance, Mystique has the ability to disguise herself as any being by shifting her biological cells. At first, she tried to use this ability to hide her natural self, but with the help of Magneto, she came to accept her mutant physique.


As ruthless as he is wild, does Wolverine fall into the category of a supervillain?

Not one to shy away from violence, Wolverine is more rough-around-the-edges than bad. The mutant who seems to never age has the ability to heal his body from any injury while also using claws made of a metal alloy to defend himself.


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