13 Lame Superpowers

I didn’t make any of these up. Each of these powers came from actual heroes or villains from comic books and/or cartoons.
I give you 13 of the lamest superpowers ever:

1. Stretching – And the strangest thing about this one? Quite a few superheroes from comics have this ability: Mr. Fantastic, Elongated Man, Plastic Man, Skin, etc.
Elongated Man

2. Ability to transform into any form of water – Zan is definitely the lesser of the two Wonder Twins. His sister can become any animal. Zan? He can become water, ice, or steam. Yipee.
Wonder Twins

3. Ability to control plants and accelerate their growth – A few superheroes/villains have this one. If you’re a vegetarian, this might be useful, having an unlimited supply of food. Otherwise? Pretty useless in any urban area.
Poison Ivy

4. Shrinking – Quite a few superheroes have this ability too. And I think it’s pretty useless, no matter how creative the comic book writers are.

5. A repulsor energy that acts as a solid force field or repels all forms of matter and energy from one’s body – Unus The Untouchable died when his force field overwhelmed and asphyxiated him. Sometimes being a mutant isn’t so great.
Unus the Untouchable

6. Good morals and harmonic “niceness vibes” – Created to be the antithesis of the villain Lobo, Goldstar has the powers of… a boyscout.

7. Neutralizing other people’s powers – Leech and Elmo pretty much just suck away other mutants’ powers. I think I’d rather have no power at all, than have the other mutants hate me.

8. Able to reduce oneself to a two-dimensional state where one’s body is as flat as paper – That’s right. Tommy can turn herself into… paper. Watch out for her nasty paper cut.

9. Able to release a powerful adhesive that causes anything to permanently stick to it on contact, the adhesive eventually dissipates, allowing the glued objects to be removed from his person – Tar Baby can glue things. Way to go.
Tar Baby

10. A pariah effect that enables one to overwhelmingly compel people to run towards or away from specific target that is focused on – Tag gets the award for most randomly useless power.

11. Extend razor sharp spikes of bone through one’s skin – Absalom and Marrow are not only freakishly ugly from having bones poke through their skin, and all they can really do with it is break off their protruding bone and hit people with it.

12. Able to generate pyrotechnic flares to create brilliant light and explosive force – Jubilee and Dazzler can make fireworks. Stay back 10 feet, and you’ll be fine.

13. Exist in a gaseous state – Containing himself in a specially-designed suit, poor Dummy disappeared from the New X-Men when his suit was ripped open and his form dispersed into the air.

65 thoughts on “13 Lame Superpowers”

  1. Awww, but you GOTTA love Jubes and Dazz! But aside from Zak and his dumb water powers (which really do take the cake), about 90% of the Generation X team sucked. Skin? Chamber and his flaming chin? MONDO? Gah.

  2. I don’t know…superpower, maybe not. But if I could stretch my 5’5″ frame to 5’9″, I’ll bet my 150 pounds would look better!

  3. Carrie – I did like Jubes.. as well as Chamber. I agree, most of their powers were dumb. But at least they had Husk.. who shed her skin (gross) to be any composition. And Gen X was probably one of my favorite teams.

  4. CJ – I’m glad you enjoyed! 🙂

    Di – Okay, that might not be bad! lol.. But I still wouldn’t call it a cool power.. just a cosmetic enhancement.

  5. Nice, lol!! It looks like a lot of these “heroes” were classified improperly back at Sky High…

    I wouldn’t discount the plant one though, I think enough people have house or office plants that the power wouldn’t be entirely useless.. probably not on par with Storm or Cyclops, but enough to give some pretty good support!

  6. ROFL on this list. I’m cracking up. Got to agree on the Wonder Twins. They definitely didn’t make me want to tune in and watch anymore. I also liked Jubes and Dazz.

    I’m feeling the urge to go watch me some X-men. 😉

  7. Bahahahaha, those are hilarious! Papercut!

    I never heard of Goldstar (sounds like he has the power of extra credit homework), but I always kinda liked Lobo.

  8. Well, you’ve got to give them points for coming up with something different, even if it is lame. Which makes the stretchy superpower even more inexplicable… maybe it’s just fun to draw? LOL!

  9. Although…I think the stretching thing *could* come in useful for certain body parts…like that dude in Fantastic 4…is there a reason his lady love was always smiling?

    Sorry, couldn’t resist!

  10. Love it!

    However, if you mean DC’s Justice League part-timer, his name is Plastic Man and not Elastic Man.

    Unless there was also an obscure Elastic Man that I don’t know anything about…

  11. #12 would actually put me out of commision (migrainer and all that – even popping rapid-edit commercials do it to me.)
    And paper cuts – man, they are vicious. Remember Miracle Max? ‘Why don’t you give me a paper cut and pour lemon juice on it?’ He knew what he was talking about.

  12. Thanks for reminding me of The Wonder Twins. Zan had better not use his “superpowers” while his sister is thirsty.

    Comic book artists are calling the ability to control plants and speed up their growth a superpower? WTF?

  13. ROFL!! I love these. I always found Zan’s abilities to be a bit weird when I was a kid. I need to go back through some of my old comics to revisit some of these again. 🙂

  14. Yeah, and this is why the mutant masequre (sp?) happen, to cull the herd.

    I disagree about the plant power, I’d had to have my butt kicked by a tree ***see remake of whomping willow from HP3***

  15. Depending on the extent, the ability to control plants and excelerate growth is not useless in an urban area. It’s a small power that can be used to devasting effect if it’s extensive enough, say the ability to grow something from seed or make something exceeding larger than what it would normally be, or to have it grow in anything, even asphalt.

    I say this as someone who lived up the street from a where a tree root ruptured a gas main and nearly blew up the entire block. *nod*


  16. ya gotta admit, though, that Poison Ivy was sexy…or was she just drawn that way?

    #9 was secretly created as a marketing tool for 3M Corporation, right?

    Wonder Twin powers…oh dear. I was a big fan of the Justice League as a kid (Had a thing for Aquaman…don’t know why) and I hated these twins as much as I hated Scrappy Doo!

    Fun list 🙂

  17. Lol. Great list. Let’s not, however, forget Jimmy Olsen as Turtle Boy (or turtle man…whichever). Or Jimmy Olsen as Bizarro Olsen… or Jimmy Olsen -most recently- as Mr. Action. Well any incarnate of Jimmy Olsen with Super Powers.

    BTW … I always hated when Plastic Man would show up randomly in JLA or JSA cross overs. But supposedly, his “plastic-ness” made him indestructible and “needed.” Elongated man – terrible.

    I wouldn’t call Mr. Fantastic useless,… boring definitely, but I can’t go as far as to say “useless.”

    Stinks to be Jubilee. She had lame powers before, now she has no powers at all. She’s currently a member of the latest incarnation of the New Warriors who all have substituted technology for their lack of powers.

  18. I think Plant powers can be quite effective, Swamp Thing was pretty bad ass, Anyone ever see where he invaded Gotham to get his Girl out of jail, he trashed Batman

  19. Good article, but there are still lamer powers out there. The Members of Section 8 from Hitman, “Friendly Fire” for example whose power was to fire powerful blast of plasma that could only injure his allies or “Jean de Baton-Baton” who fought crime using the power of frenchiness or my personal favorite “Dog Welder” he basically welded dead dogs to the faces of criminals. The legion of superheroes also has plenty of lame ones, “Arms fall of boy”, “Bouncing Boy”, “Matter eater lad” you get the picture.

  20. Dazzler’s powers got pretty cool after they developed. I mean, sure at the beginning she just glowed when she was singing, but she could control light. That means she could make illusions and shoot lasers out of her fingertips. While that’s maybe not quite as useful as a healing factor, it’s a lot better than just “fireworks.”

  21. Back in the 1960s, “Elastic Lad” was a superhero identity of Superman’s “pal,” Jimmy Olsen. He had to drink a special “elastic serum” which temporarily gave him stretching abilities. Jimmy also became an honorary member of the Legion of Super-Heroes. So, add another “hero” to the list of super-stretchers. I think there are Legion members/former members with many of the powers listed above (#7: Nemesis Lad (he was only in a couple of episodes and turned out to be a traitor), #4 Shrinking Violet, and #3 Chlorophyl Kid (though, I suspect he was only in the Substitute Legion — if my fading memory serves).

  22. Don’t forget Flatman from the Great Lakes Avengers/Lightning Rods. He can become flat as paper AND stretch!

  23. # Di Says:
    October 25th, 2007 at 8:29 am

    I don’t know…superpower, maybe not. But if I could stretch my 5′5″ frame to 5′9″, I’ll bet my 150 pounds would look better!

    Wow. Try 6’1″.

  24. “4. Shrinking – Quite a few superheroes have this ability too. And I think it’s pretty useless, no matter how creative the comic book writers are.”

    Good job on the list. I think you might’ve been a tad too quick on the trigger to include the shrinking power though. DC’s Atom Man, for example, was able to physically travel the currents of a phone connection – allowing him to instantaneously travel anywhere in the world. I always thought that was unbelievably cool albeit unfeasible…

    He was also able to enter a person’s body and perform impossibly delicate operations. Imagine also building a complex that includes a running track and being able to fit it in a shoe box. Or… taking a 5 inch TV and shrinking yourself enough to turn it into the largest big-screen in the world.

    If stuck in a situation where you’re falling out of an airplane, you could shrink yourself enough to travel the air currents. Need a large pool but live in a small apartment – no problem… turn anything into an olympic size swimming pool just by shrinking.

    There’s a ton of other stuff before even the creative juices need to kick in:-)

    13. Exist in a gaseous state

    Yeah… this sounds more like a curse than a super power…

  25. Excellent post.

    I do have to take issue with Plastic Man, though. Technically, he does more than stretch. He can:

    1. Turn into ANYTHING. Car, airplane, nuclear bomb, elephant, forty foot long chainsaw, you name it. The only limit he has is that he can’t control the color. He’s always bright red and yellow.

    2. He’s totally invulnerable to harm. He was blasted to atoms several millions years in the past and was able to reconstitute himself. He also functionally immortal.

    All told, his powers (By DC universe standards) are considered on a par or even superior to Superman or Captain Marvel. He’s nearly all powerful in the crazy stuff he can do.

    He is also as nutty as a fruitcake, so take that how you will. 😛

  26. I don’t agree that the plants power is useless. Aren’t you familiar with Irene from Xanth? she managed to become a full sorceress with that power. You just have to carry a lot of seeds around with you…

  27. The worst supervillain I can remember was forearm, whose superpower was that he had…four arms. Handy for picking himself up off the ground whenever he received one of his regular beatings.

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