Marvel vs DC Fan Vote Decides Which Heroes Would Win Today

A new Marvel versus DC poll has revealed which heroes would win, should the event be held today. The original Marvel vs. DC, published in 1996, pitted the biggest stars of each universe against each other, with some winners decided by fan vote. Now, 26 years later, writer Gail Simone polled fans, asking who would win these hypothetical match-ups–with some surprising results!

By the mid-1990s, the comic book industry was in a slump. The early part of the decade had seen unprecedented growth, but it bottomed out and by 1995, many publishers and stores had gone under. Marvel and DC weathered the storm, but were not spared fully either; to help rejuvenate sales, the two rival publishers came together in one landmark event. Marvel vs. DC (or DC vs. Marvel, depending on who published it) was a four-issue miniseries, written by Ron Marz and Peter David and illustrated by Dan Jurgens and Claudio Castellini, in which the heroes of each universe were forced to fight one another. The series was famous for how five of the 11 match-ups were decided: by fan vote. Of course, the results were controversial and failed to settle the Marvel vs DC debate once and for all, but it remained a fun moment in 90s comics history. Yet what if Marvel vs. DC was published today? How might each match-up go, 26 years later?


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Writer Gail Simone posed this question on her Twitter account, and tallied up the results. Perhaps Marvel vs DC’s biggest match, in terms of power and strength, was Superman’s fight against the Hulk, which the Man of Steel won in 1996; in 2022, he is still victorious, with 77 % of the vote. The event’s other most anticipated participants, Batman and Captain America, fought each other for hours, with Batman winning by what amounted to a technicality. Today, Batman still wins the fight–but it was a close one: Batman took 53 % with the Sentinel of Liberty coming in at 46 %. The X-Men’s Storm trounced Wonder Woman in 1996, but today fans voted Diana of Themyscira the winner. Wolverine mopped the floor with Lobo in 96, and continues to do so in 2022; likewise, Spider-Man still beats Superboy. In addition, Simone asked readers to pick the winners of the battles not decided by fan votes. In 1996, Aquaman defeated Namor, but today the Sub-Mariner (barely) stands victorious. The winners of the remaining five match-ups of the original event maintain their status as winners in 2022: Robin defeats Jubilee, Thor beats Shazam, the Silver Surfer one-ups Green Lantern and the Flash still runs circles around Quicksilver.

Perhaps the most interesting takeaway from Simone’s poll is that the winners of each match-up stayed the same, with a few notable exceptions. Of the five matches decided by fans, only one changed: Wonder Woman versus Storm. What happened in 26 years? Why did the outcome change, when it can be argued that today Storm is more powerful than ever? In the mid-1990s, Wonder Woman was at a low point, having just been replaced by Artemis. At the time Marvel vs DC was published, Diana had just returned to the role; in the years since, Wonder Woman’s visibility has increased significantly, thanks to her live-action films. Captain America and Batman are the best fighters of their respective universes, meaning a close fight in both 1996 and 2022. Finally, while Wolverine beat Lobo in 1996, it was a much closer fight, but today Wolverine handily disposed of Lobo. Why? Again it may be an issue of visibility, as the mid-1990s were the peak of Lobo’s popularity.

The original event was a landmark book that may have saved the comics' industry. Now, Gail Simone has revealed who would win if Marvel vs DC was published today.

Source: Gail Simone