Thursday, July 25, 2013

Who's the Best... Nice Guy or Gal?

Doug:  This post is of course inspired by Karen's query on Jerks from about 10 days ago.


Edo Bosnar said...

This is a pretty big field, just because "nice guy/gal" is (or used to be, anyway) the default setting for most super-heroes. That's why the jerks tended to stand out. So I guess I'll go for one who was super-nice even by those standards, Colossus. During that whole initial period of the new X-men into the early '80s he was always such a sweet, good-natured and noble guy.

Humanbelly said...

Oh golly, there are soooo many great candidates: The three that were pictured, Colossus, the Billy Batson version of Capt. Marvel, Rahne Sinclair (early on),
Agent Phil Coulson from the film franchise, Hank McCoy (although he's also quite the clown), Baldur, Triton-- HOWEVER, my vote is going to go faithfully to m'boy Wendell Vaughn-- QUASAR. As originally conceived by Mark Gruenwald, his good nature and distinct lack of a killer instinct was what enabled him to wear and use the quantum bands w/out being consumed by them. Being a "nice guy" was, in fact, what GAVE him his powers-! I just loved that take on a character at a time when "dark and gritty" was starting to gain a popular foothold. Completely counter to the coming trend. Quaze is the only character I've ever heard call Crusher Creel "sir" while engaging him. Man, not even Cap can make that claim, y'know?


david_b said...

I'd go with C.C. Beck's Billy Batson and the entire Marvel Family clan. You couldn't have gotten nicer than them.

DC's Starfire was pretty sweet and naive in the early NTT days. I shudder when pondering what writers have done with her in the last twentysome years. For Marvel, I'd go with either Cap or Janet VanDyne.

Anonymous said...

Edo, great call on Colossus. I think he was my favorite new X-Man. His character was a great foil for the Wolverine-types (jerks). I think it was characterization like that which helped propel the X-Men to the top of the heap.

I'll throw in the ever-lovin' blue-eyed Thing - gruff exterior but a heart of gold. Who could not like Ben Grimm?


Pat Henry said...

I suppose Guy Gardner won't make this list either :-\

I'd have to say Supergirl, who is about as sweet and sensitive a kid as imaginable given her powers. But then I'd have to include the entire Legion... as someone else said "nice" is the default setting for most heroes, and particularly DC heroes.

Mike said...

I want to second david_b's choices as they echo who comes to mind for me: DC - Starfire, Marvel - Cap.

When Dick Grayson/Robin is written correctly I'd consider him too ... but again these choices are strictly Bronze Age choices. I'm ignoring anything written in the last 20 years or so.

William said...

People have mentioned Colossus as the "nice guy" from the "All New, All Different X-Men" days. However, I think the title of nicest guy from the bronze age X-Men might go to Nightcrawler. I think that Claremont wrote Kurt Wagner as an exceptionally nice guy because it made for an interesting contrast to his demonic appearance.

I think Spider-Man has always been a pretty nice kid. In fact, of "A" list heroes, he's probably the nicest. Superman would probably be second.

But let's face it, pretty much all superheroes are nice guys and gals (even the jerky ones). I mean, they are heroes, after all. They selflessly risk their lives everyday to help others… for no money!

Anonymous said...

@Pat Henry But remember when Guy Gardner got klonked on the head and (temporarily) turned so nice it was almost sickening?

I'd have to vote for Billy Batson/Captain fact, the whole Marvel Family was pretty saccharine; I personally preferred Mary when she was corrupted by Darkseid and went all bad-ass...bad girls are much more fun!

Mike W.

Humanbelly said...

Ooh, good one, William. Can't believe we overlooked Kurt-- a guy who remained unfailingly kind in spite of being dealt a particularly tough hand, appearance-wise.


Teresa said...

A lot of really good choices. My choice is for the same reason Quasar was brought up. He was in contrast to the Grim-n-Gritty crowd. Will Payton, Starman from the early 90s. He was a regular guy that got powers. The character could easily gave been a Marvel character. I recently went back and read the series again. It was fun. A rare experience from that era of books.

Rip Jagger said...

Quasar is a great choice for this title. I adored that book for its solid old-style adventures and for Wendell's exceedingly polite manner. It was charming.

Another name to consider is a TV superhero literally named...Captain Nice!

Rip Off

Anonymous said...

For Marvel, it's Captain America and Spidey. For DC, it's Superman and Green Lantern.

- Mike 'ate too many cheeseburgers' from Trinidad & Tobago.

Matt Celis said...

Clark Kent, Bruce Wayne, Peter Parker, Barry Allen, and Diana Prince... but overall probably Clark Kent.

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