Welcome to the Top 100 DC and Marvel Comic Book Characters poll!

Yes, it's been another four years already! As always, every year we do a different poll and each of the four polls rotates (so each one shows up every four years). This time around, you're voting for your favorite comic book characters!

This is the FOURTH time that we've done this particular poll, so it will be fascinating to see how tastes have changed over the course of a dozen years.

Here's the deal. You folks have the chance to vote until 11:59 PM Eastern time, September 30th. I'll tabulate all the votes and I'll begin a countdown of the winners starting sometime in early October and it will continue for pretty much the rest of the month.

Sound good?

Okay, here are the guidelines! A quick word about the guidelines - I know there are a lot of rules, but honestly, for, like, 90% of the votes cast, you all get it and don't really need me to explain stuff to you. So most of you can quit reading after #5, but you know there's always someone who will want to quibble about something, so I go into more detail for them. Most of you, though, you know your favorites and it's very simple. So don't get put off by the tons of rules.

1. Vote by e-mailing me your ballot at brianc@cbr.com. Put in your subject heading something along the lines of "Top Comic Characters Vote." It doesn't have to be that precise phrasing, but something along those lines. Just so that I know that your e-mail is your ballot for sorting purposes.

2. You're going to be voting for twenty characters in total here. Your ten favorite DC characters AND your ten favorite Marvel characters. Vote for TEN each - less than ten DC characters and ten Marvel characters and I don't count your ballot. And come on, even if you're much more of a Marvel fan than a DC fan, I'm sure you can think of ten DC characters you dig (and vice versa).

3. Rank your ten favorite DC characters and ten favorite Marvel characters from #1 (your most favorite) to #10 (your 10th most favorite). I'd prefer it if you actually numbered your entry, #1-10. It's easier for me to count. Just reply in the body of the e-mail. Don't send attachments. I'm already going to have to cut and paste over a thousand votes, don't make me have to open up a pdf or whatever on top of that.

Here's a template you can use as a guide. You can just copy and paste it into your e-mail:

TOP TEN DC AND MARVEL COMIC CHARACTERS

DC CHARACTERS

1.

2.

3.

4.

5.

6.

7.

8.

9.

10.

MARVEL CHARACTERS

1.

2.

3.

4.

5.

6.

7.

8.

9.

10.

4. Your top choice will be given 10 points, your second choice 9, etc.

5. Any character currently owned by DC or Marvel is eligible. So the Wildstorm characters, the Watchmen and V for Vendetta characters and Vertigo characters. Angela is one who was added around the time of the last poll. In four years, we've really had no new Marvelman/Miracleman stories, so I'm still going to hold off on allowing Miracleman/Marvelman just yet. Hopefully by 2023, we'll actually have some really new Miracleman/Marvelman stories AT Marvel. What mostly is NOT allowed are any licensed characters. Luke Skywalker, Snake Eyes, Rom, Optimus Prime, Doc Savage, Conan the Barbarian, Red Sonja, Astro City and the Milestone Media characters - none of them are allowed.

6. One of the more controversial aspects of the vote is how to handle alternate universe versions of characters. I've decided to go with "One name, one character" So Ultimate Iron Man and Iron Man would be one character, not two separate characters. Dark Knight Returns Batman and Batman would be one character, not two separate characters. You can include which version you're specifically voting for, and I might include that in the end (you know, like, "Iron Man - XXX points (XX of those points for Ultimate Iron Man"). Similarly, Legion of Super-Heroes characters will all be lumped into one (so a vote for 3Boot Cosmic Boy would just be a vote for Cosmic Boy). The only difference would be if they do not share the same name. Like Green Lantern Alan Scott is different than Green Lantern Hal Jordan and Spider-Man Peter Parker is different from Spider-Man Miles Morales.

Some notable exceptions to this rule that you can vote for even though they have the same name as someone else, as they've been established as very distinct characters completely unlike their other versions:

1. Pre-Crisis Superboy

2. Ultimate Nick Fury

3. Ultimate Reed Richards

4. Spider-Gwen

7. Identify which character you mean when you vote for a legacy character. In other words, don't just write Green Lantern or Flash, specify which one you mean (Hal Jordan, Jay Garrick, etc.)

8. The following duos and trios count as one character for voting purposes (I'll add more as it becomes appropriate):

Warriors Three

Moon Boy and Devil Dinosaur

Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur

We3

Monsieur Mallah and the Brain

Cloak and Dagger

Hawk and Dove

9. Team don't count for this list. In the past, I wavered on the Metal Men or the Challengers of the Unknown, but now, I'm just going to say no. They never make the actual list, so it just seems pointless. Maybe I'll do a teams poll in the future. They could be voted for there. I only make exceptions for duos/trios, because I don't want people wasting their votes voting for, say, Hawk and Dove separately. They might make it as a pair, but there's no way they'll make it individually. I think they really do exist mostly as a duo.

10. For characters with multiple identities, vote for whichever one you like best, but I'll be combining the votes in the end, so a vote for Yellowjacket (Hank Pym) is the same as a vote for Giant-Man (Hank Pym) and a vote for Oracle is the same as a vote for Batgirl (Barbara Gordon).

11. I'll make various other decisions in the interest of fairness.

If you have questions and or requests for clarification, feel free to e-mail me them (again, make the subject heading clear so I'll know it's a question and not a cast ballot). I'll list the answers here:

Most importantly, have fun!

Now vote! :)

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