10 Superheroes You Totally Forgot Were Rip-Offs

The X-Men are one of Marvel's most beloved creations... and they're also kind of a rip-off.

DC Comics

From the age of pulp comics to the iconic golden and silver ages of comics and all the way up to the modern movie age of comics, one thing has remained consistent throughout generations: corporate theft. The industry is a game of sales and demographic appeal, and if one idea works for one company, it stands to reason it will work for another.

As a result, a lot of characters are either heavily influenced by or outright ripped off from other, pre-existing properties. This practice has become standard in the comic book industry and has been going on for so long that some of the most famous rip-offs in the medium's history have outshone their predecessors and become iconic in their own right.

People have forgotten that Alan Moore modelled his the Watchmen directly on Steve Ditko's Charlton Comics characters, that the Squadron Supreme is a riff on the Justice League, and that Hawkeye is a carbon copy of Green Arrow, right down to a bird-themed girlfriend. And sometimes, it helps to take a step back and be reminded that the characters currently dominating the box office are based on plagiarisms.


A writer, blogger, comedian, and actor in New York City, Mason relishes any opportunity to discuss his favorite topics. He has many strong opinions on all facets of media and pop culture.