Universal Pictures via Everett Collection
“We only use 10% of our brain power.” While that little piece of junk science is mostly false, it’s the central conceit of Luc Besson’s upcoming film Lucy. In the film, Lucy (Scarlett Johannson) is able to unlock weird and wondrous abilities after a mysterious drug unlocks her brain’s latent potential. Lucy’s powers grow exponentially per every gained iota of brain functionality, and by the end, the character is able to control people with her mind, whip baddies through the air with telekinesis, and even warp reality to her whims. Just judging from the trailer, Lucy may be the most powerful film character ever created, but she does have some stiff competition. We bet these near-omnipotent beings can give the character a run for her money.
Professor X (X-Men)
Abilities: Telepathy, mind control
The on-again, off-again leader of the X-Men is one of the most powerful mutants in the world. Despite being paralyzed from the waist down, the professor towers over his peers thanks to a variety of mental powers. He can create illusions, change your memories, read minds, and manipulate the actions of those under his control. The professor is wheelchair-bound and doesn’t have telekinesis, which does limit him in a purely physical sense, but he does have the power to rewire nearly anyone’s brain, so he’s not to be taken lightly
Power Rating: 7/10. The professor’s score could have been higher, but when all your arch-nemesis needs to stop your powers is a metal helmet, you get knocked down a few grades.
The Doctor (Doctor Who)
Abilities: Extreme Intellect
If anyone on this list were a walking deus ex machina, it would be the Doctor. For over 50 years and thousands of adventures across film, television, comic books, and even radio dramas, the Time Lord has been able to think his way out of any situation. He’s basically the British Batman. The fact that he can regenerate his body 13 times over is also a huge boon. The Doctor’s only flaw is that he can’t seem to keep his traveling companions safe. While a few of them have outright died, others have been trapped in parallel dimensions, locked in the past, had all their memories of their adventures with the Doctor wiped clean, and more. (And that’s just in the latest incarnation of the series). The Doctor is also usually portrayed as a feeble old man, showing big things sometimes come in small packages.
Power Rating: 6/10. The Doctor can certainly outsmart nearly everyone on this list, but he’s not winning any fist fights.
Dr. Manhattan (Watchmen)
Abilities: Control over matter, telekinesis, teleportation, clairvoyance
Dr. Manhattan, from Alan Moore’s Watchmen, is a superhero with unparalleled power. He dwarfs his crime-fighting peers and humanity in general thanks to his abilities to reconfigure matter, perceive the future, and teleport anywhere in the galaxy. The downside to his extreme powers is his inability to connect with humanity. His mind has stretched so far past the capabilities and concerns of normal people that their earthly concerns seem to him like a bunch of cockroaches fighting over a spec of dust. This, of course, causes friction with his very human girlfriend throughout the book and film. He could also use a lesson or two about modesty, but when you’re basically a demi-god, you don’t have any qualms about letting it all hang out
Power Rating: 9/10. When you hint at the end of your comic book that you’re about to create life on other planets, you get a 9.
Galactus (Fantastic Four)
Abilities: Reality alteration, control over matter
Galactus is a creature of immense power that devours entire worlds for sustenance. Born in a place that predates the big bang, the god-like creature has roamed the universe eating planets. Unfortunately for Galactus, his plans to eat the planet Earth are continually foiled by Reed Richards and the Fantastic Four. Thanks to the Ultimate Nullifier, which can destroy any target the wielder chooses, Galactus is often sent running from earth with his tail tucked between his legs.
Power Rating: 8/10. Galactus would have scored higher, but when you’re continually rebuffed by a stretchy man, someone who is hard to see, a rock, and a guy on fire, you’re not as all-powerful as you think.
Morgan Freeman (Bruce Almighty)
Abilities: Life creation, reality warping, narrating penguin movies, appearing in two too many Dolphin Tale movies
In a list full of demi-gods, Morgan Freeman in Bruce Almighty is real deal Judeo-Christian deity, and what better way for God himself to spend his time than to help out Jim Carrey with his relationship problems. Freeman is seen warping reality in ways we would expect, given that he is the creator of all things, and he is even able to give Carrey’s character a slice of his powers for a short while.
Power Rating: 8/10. Freeman or “God” would have scored higher, but he somehow didn’t forsee the biblical plague on cinema that was Evan Almighty, so he gets docked a couple points.
Scarlet Witch (X-Men, The Avengers: Age of Ultron)
Abilities: Reality warping, probability manipulation, magic
Through her long history in comic books, the Scarlet Witch’s powers have gone through many iterations and transformations. Currently, she is one of the most powerful mutants in the Marvel universe, able to wield magic and manipulate probability. The only downside is that Wanda doesn’t have absolute control over her powers, and they often manifest in unintended ways, given her mood. In a recent Marvel event called House of M, the comic book character was able to rewrite the entire Marvel universe so she’s certainly one of the more powerful characters on the list.
Power Rating: 9/10. It’s hard to give a definitive power rating to the Scarlet Witch, but she is definitely a force to be reckoned with
Akira was one of the first animes to truly break into the American public consciousness, and one of its most powerful characters is Tetsuo, an insanely powerful psychic that threatens to destroy the city of Neo-Tokyo, a city previously destroyed by another rampaging psychic 30 years earlier. (Note to self: don’t move to Tokyo in the imaginary future). Tetsuo loses control of his powers, which mutate him into an uncontrollable and grotesque mass of organs, but is brought back under control by Akira.
Power Rating: 10/10 While Dr. Manhattan hinted about creating life at the end of Watchmen, Tetsuo creates his own big bang at the end of Akira. Game. Set. Match.