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Top 10 Movie Superhero Portrayals

VO: Rebecca Brayton
There are countless of amazing comic book superheroes out there. Unfortunately, few of their Hollywood blockbuster film adaptations ever do them justice. Thankfully, there have been several actors who fully invested themselves in their character, and truly brought to life our childhood heroes! Join as we count down our Top 10 favorite Superhero Movie Portrayals.

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Top 10 Movie Superhero Portrayals

Perfectly capturing these characters from the comics on the silver screen is not an easy task. Welcome to, and today we’ll be counting down our Top 10 favorite Superhero Movie Portrayals.

Number 10: Jackie Earle Haley – Rorschach

Kicking off our list is the anti-hero from the Watchmen series. It takes a special actor to portray this resourceful character, as he has no real superpowers. Thankfully, Haley brings this grizzled loner to life as a troubled vigilante of justice, and wears the hero’s badge like a champ. Don’t let his small stature fool you!

Number 9: Mickey Rourke – Marv

Sure, Marv isn’t a true superhero per se, but we wouldn’t say that to his face. Few actors could pull off playing this seven-foot-tall beast with a buzz cut, but Rourke seems born for the role. Are we the only ones who think Mickey could easily plunge through plate-glass window like a total boss?

Number 8: Chris Hemsworth – Thor

Okay, admit it: you never really thought Thor was a cool character. Does it even count as a real superhero if you rip your character off from Norse legend? Many of you were probably just as surprised as we were when newcomer Hemsworth not only turned out to be a perfect fit for the role, but also ended up doing the unthinkable: he made Thor cool.

Number 7: Ron Perlman – Hellboy

Perlman is one actor who is at his best wearing a mask, and that makes him a perfect choice to portray this conflicted superhero. Not only does he captivate us by giving the creature a strong sense of humanity, but he also sells Hellboy as an extreme bad-ass and a sensitive softy.

Number 6: Tobey Maguire – Peter Parker/Spider-Man

Let’s begin by pretending that Spider-man 3 and emo Peter Parker never happened. That aside, playing Peter Parker is a bit of a paradox and admittedly a very tough job: you have to be convincingly weak and nerdy, and an ass-kicking crime fighter all at the same time. Given the circumstances, Maguire is as convincing as anyone could have been.

Number 5: Patrick Stewart - Charles Xavier/ Professor X

Elegance, grace, gravitas, and ability to command a team… Captain Picard was perfect as leader of the X-Men! He didn’t even have to shave his head or fake an accent! If you ask us, you simply can’t get any closer to his comic-book counterpart!

Number 4: Robert Downey Jr. – Tony Stark/Iron Man

Ironman worked for two reasons. One, everyone who saw it couldn’t help but think how sweet it would be to have one of those suits, and two, Robert Downey Jr. plays a really good douchebag. That’s it folks, case closed.

Number 3: Hugh Jackman – Logan/Wolverine

When the relatively unknown Hugh Jackman was picked to play Wolverine in 2000, a lot of people weren’t happy. He’s not big enough! He’s not tough enough! But, as it turns out, Jackman owns the role, and gives us a brash, yet vulnerable version of the immortal mutant that few could have expected. We also dig his crazy rage scene during the mansion assault in X2 – so bad-ass!

Number 2: Michael Keaton – Bruce Wayne/Batman

There are definitely two schools of thought on this one, and we’re definitely gonna catch some grief from Christian Bale fans who favor his throaty version of the Caped Crusader. But, we’re decided there’s only one Batman. Michael Keaton’s understated and riveting interpretation of the character has survived the test of time. Keaton brings a perfect portrayal of the troubled, isolated, complex and mysterious hero that strikes fear into the hearts of criminals… Okay, okay, we swear we like Bale too!

Number 1: Christopher Reeve – Clark Kent/Superman

Rounding out our list is the greatest in a long line of actors to play the Man of Steel. Reeve captures the essence of this hero’s dual identities, and highlights his humor, heart and unshakeable moral code. We also dig Brandon Routh’s more recent portrayal, but mostly because he reminds us of Chris Reeve in his ability to embody the American spirit and its eternal optimism.

Do you agree or disagree with our choices? Feel free to rage against us, or defend us in the comments section.

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