Pop Cult India’s Top 4 Superhero Successors

Superhero deaths are financial maneuvers. It can simply be for publicity or for a fresh makeover of the hero’s symbol. And often leads to a huge spike in readership. This is followed by a replacement hero/ successor. If their legacy turns out to be retarded (One of Superman’s successors was played by Shaquille O’Neal) then the original is resurrected. Ironically, even if their heir is doing well, the death of the original is retconned in another marketing gimmick by the publisher. Basically, it sucks to take over the mantle because either way you’ll be jumped sooner or later.

However, some of them have made their mark. And fans of that generation will swear that their contemporary incarnation is better than the original.

#4 Miles Morales, Spiderman

Miles is different from others on this list. He didn’t inherit his from his predecessor. In many ways, his appearance after Peter Parker’s heroic sacrifice was coincidental.

Many disapproved a coloured man replacing Parker, because they felt that Marvel is compromising quality in favour of political correctness. However, many including Stan Lee believe that he is an inspiration to the minority groups and refreshing change.

Today, he is hugely popular. He is the lead in Ultimate Comics: Spiderman and has appeared on telly as well. Spidey has had other spinoffs (Spiderman: 2099, Spiderman Noir etc.) but those characters remain cult icons. On the other hand this half-Black, half-Hispanic chap is swinging past our expectations.

 #3 Kyle Rayner, Green Lantern


Who? The black guy from Justice League: The Animated Series? No.

Kyle Rayner is the 4th human Green Lantern. His spiritual parent was a jackass. Hal Jordan didn’t only burn Coast City to the ground, he practically destroyed the corps. Thus, when Rayner wore the ring he was the last Green Lantern. And you thought you had pressure.

In many ways he is the best Lantern there is. He absorbs the embodiment of will; Ion. At one point masters all 7 colours as a White Lantern. And being a graphic artist, he renders the most beautiful constructs in battle (not fists and feet like Hal).

And he did one thing that none of the other Lanterns did; earned Batman’s respect.

 #2 Wally West, The Flash

WallyWestHe is Barry Allen’s wife’s nephew and was the archetypical sidekick (Jeez, he was in Teen Titans). After the events of the epic Crisis of Infinite Earths (1985-86), Wally had to fill the boots of his mentor. Wally has been the primary flash for 23 years since.

He is naturally inferior to Barry in skill, but having the exact same origin, he has the same potential. Moreover, Wally is The Flash for most of us. How many of you knew who Barry Allen is if not for the 2009 retcon? He was the speedster in JL:TAS, not Barry.

Yes, we are nostalgic about him and you’ll have to see it to believe it. But it’s just sad that DC Comics are “unsure of his whereabouts” in the current issues in publication (New 52).

Wally West must return.

 #1 Dick Grayson, Batman

We all know who he is; else the doors to buzz off are still open. As Robin he was the ideal student. AsDickGrayson Nightwing he stood out of the vast shadow of his mentor. But only when Bruce Wayne was obliterated by Darkseid, the prodigal son returned.

The 2 reasons why he’s on the top of this list are; (a) he actually had to fight for the cowl and (b) he’s Batman. Now there, he didn’t want to become Batman. But he realised he had to.

In a lot of ways his Batman had every bit of soul Bruce had and something more; heart. Also, he trained his mentor’s son without having him wear a tunic and underwear.

When one reads about Dick Grayson as Batman, you see Bruce Wayne’s dream come true. Because, Batman is more than a man, he’s a symbol.