Comics Creators

Should superheroes fight one another?


This topic was inspired by a discussion about Batman vs Superman. My mother was of the opinion that the premise was crap because it’s about two superheroes fighting each other. Granted, when she was a young girl, superheroes never fought amongst themselves (at least, not in DC Comics). Of course, infighting amongst superheroes is more prevalent nowadays (especially in Marvel Comics). Whole events are dedicated to it (Civil War, anyone?)

I’m more in the middle. Superheroes should disagree, maybe not always get along, but should they be fighting in the streets like stray dogs? Not to the degree it’s been depicted.



While it’s been a common occurrence in superhero comics, it really became a staple with Avengers Disassembled - nearly every Marvel event since has featured variations on the theme: Civil War, House of M, Fear Itself, Dark Reign, Secret Invasion, Secret Wars, Avengers v X-Men, AXIS … the only notable event that didn’t feature some version of Heroes v Heroes is Infinity.

Even the smaller stuff like World War Hulk, Spider-Island, Black Vortex, Schism, Battle of the Atom and Shadowland has had variations on the theme. It was even a big part of Age of Ultron and Siege - which were ostensibly meant to be about taking down villains. Its not stopping either - Avengers: Standoff, Civil War II.

I think, at some point, the publishers realised that the villains just werent very interesting, and if they were VERY interesting, then why not make them protagonists in some way (Loki, Magneto etc), so we have revolving stories about heroes punching heroes because all the good conflict with villains seems to be told.


No they shouldn’t. It works when it’s done rarely like TDKR or Civil War but otherwise it’s lazy writing.


This is exactly it, and it’s kind of BS.

I’m OK with heroes fighting heroes but it is kind of lazy when done so much. Moral ambiguity doesn’t always have to be the case, and also friendship, family, and loyalty are valuable themes that shouldn’t be tossed aside.


It’s been a part of comics for years, there was an X-Men v Avengers book back in the 1980s. The problem now is what the posts above me have said that they seem to be returning to the same idea constantly. Which shows a paucity of imagination.


I think the new rule should be superheroes fight each other at the same rate they have sex with each other.


If you can come up with a story that demands it dramatically, then sure, why not. The heroes-fight-over-a-misunderstanding-before-teaming-up-against-a-common-enemy cliché is a basic outline that works, but it’s a cliché for a reason, and it’s decades old at this point.

Like anything, once you see it all the time it becomes tiresome and you yearn for something different. But there’s nothing wrong with it per se, I don’t think.


Im confident this is born out of endless “who would win?” discussions the writers had as kids.


I grew up with it. It’s a trope of the genre and not going away soon, particularly since “good/right/justice” becomes variegated among different factions of superbeings.


I think the question isn’t “should they” but “do people think heroes fighting each other is more interesting than heroes fighting villains?”


Only for the novelty, really.

Stuff like Daredevil vs Punisher is the most interesting to me - when there are genuinely interesting conflicts of ideas to be explored - but if meetings of heroes more often than not end with them fighting each other, then you have to ask how heroic they all are.


I get a little tired of the demonic posession, mind control, stolen identity etc conventions.


I thought your posts had been a bit strange lately.


:imp: :skull: :bust_in_silhouette:

:fire: :fire: :fire: YOU ARE NEXT DAVID WALLACE :fire: :fire: :fire:

:smiling_imp: :japanese_ogre: :japanese_goblin:


Superheroes can fight each other. It shouldn’t be the only thing that they do. If villains aren’t interesting enough, write some more interesting villains.


People argue, even teams of people argue.

Punching or laser-eyeing each other is a bit different though. That requires a lot of work to set up, explore and cope with afterwards. Big fights change the status quo, and when they don’t that’s often where the thing fails to work properly.

Like anything, it can be over-used, but I have no problem with the idea itself.

Just do it well.


On the whole? No. It’s the one thing that I’ve become bored rigid by in superheroes and Marvel seems to have forgotten the very idea that there can even be super-villains.

It was arguably the biggest weakness in HIckman’s big Avengers run - that Cap had to be mindwiped because he apparently truly believed his friends were evil bastards! It didn’t track that at no point in that whole exchange in New Avengers #3, no one said: ‘You really think so little of us and then say you know us and call us friends? Screw you Rogers.’ Cap seems off in Hickman’s run but I’m not convinced that’s entirely Hickman’s doing.

Similarly, Civil War sets up rogue superheroes not as a menace to society, but the menace. Thus, if it’s a choice between dealing with a murderer or capturing an unregistered superhero, regardless of what they are doing, the hero capture takes priority. Bollocks to that.

That, after all this kind of punch-ups and betrayals, everyone then decides to get along also doesn’t fly for me. There needs to be a sense of consequence to these actions, it should be:

‘hey, buddy, I know I punched you through a wall or three a couple of days back, but how about a peace offering of a beer?’

The response should be:

‘A beer huh? Yeah, I’ll give you a beer, I’ll ram the broken bottle up your arse you piece o’ crap. Now bugger off’.


The trial of the Juggernaut gets the Balance just right then.


This is really something that should be brought up in CIVIL WAR. As much as these “heroes” believe they are fighting for good or for peace (ironically), they really and obviously feel much more comfortable with situations that they can punch or solve in some other violent manner. They are all hammers so everything they see becomes nails - or at least they end up maneuvering into that position, their comfort zones. And, of course, it’s an audience expectation as well. This is actually something that was not picked up on in the shift from Wildstorm/ABC and Ultimate comics to the big screen. Yeah, the Ellis/Hitch Authority usually ended up punching their way to victory, but the Millar/Quitely version occasionally ended with the heroes compromising with the villain because (a) the villains had a justifiable point of view driving their actions and (b) the Authority took the time to see that point of view. Tom Strong and Promethea were all about moving past the same situations that led to the same outcomes and never solved anything. Even in the Ultimates, there was never any final victory. The consequences of one successful mission often led to the complications of the next big crisis.

So, yeah, superheroes should fight each other because if both protagonist and antagonist are heroes, you find out more about their characters - who they are aside from the powers they have.

At the same time, some heroes are just not the type to start punching out of the gate:


Yeah Superheroes fighting was something that’s been overused at this point.
Marvel’s done it so much I just wan’t characters to be friends! :frowning: Hehehe finger pointing aside, I’m ok with seeing BVS soon, it’s a fight match up people have been intrigued to see so I’m ok with it.

I think this might tie into the overuse of heroes fighting heroes with Marvel’s events.