We've been fortunate enough to have the Summer of Supers this year, which prompted me to consider the following question:
- Professor X ("X-Men: First Class"): Mind control and extremely powerful telepathy, plus the power of an amazingly cool British accent. OK, so you wouldn't get that or his vast fortune and enormous mansion, but on the plus side you don't have to be bound to a wheelchair either.
- Magneto ("X-Men: First Class"): You could certainly argue that Magneto's powers would make you one of the most powerful people on the planet, as it does for Erik in the Marvel Universe. But I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that part of what makes those powers so effective is the man using them. He's creative, ruthless, extremely quick to make decisions, and visionary. Plus, in the real world, how much good does it do you to be able to fling tanks around? I suppose you could rent yourself out as a mercenary, or even set yourself up as a major super-villain, but ... what fun is that? I mean, you get shot at all day.
- Sebastian Shaw ("X-Men: First Class"): You can absorb energy, basically making yourself bulletproof (at least, in the absence of a telepathic lockdown). As a special bonus, you're also immortally young and healthy. That's pretty awesome.
- Thor ("Thor"): On the other hand, Thor is also immortal. You get to control the weather (that would be worth a fortune in the real world), you're super strong, you can fly, and for fun you can fling your hammer to knock down mountains. Sadly, as with Xavier's spiffy British accent, you don't get the long golden hair or unbelievable pecs.
- Captain America ("The First Avenger: Captain America"): Extreme strength, agility, and combat prowess to make you the world's greatest soldier. However, see "shot, getting at" from the Magneto entry, only this time without a bulletproof magnetic shell. Pass.
- Hawkeye ("Thor"): Granted, you didn't get to see Hawkeye actually do anything, so this is a hard sell. But I'm going to assume this is the same version of Hawkeye we were treated to in the Millar/Hitch "Ultimates", the guy who killed a whole house full of murderous soldiers by ripping his fingernails off and flinging them. I don't care who you are, that's freaking awesome.
- Green Lantern ("Green Lantern"): On the plus side, you can use one of the most powerful weapons in the galaxy to do almost anything you can imagine. Except make yourself young or to grant yourself acting ability. Or underwear, once the ring runs out of juice, which it will 24 hours after arriving in our own real (as in, "There is no OA") universe.
To me, the strongest competitors are Shaw, Xavier, and Thor. Because eternal youth and health would be unbelievably awesome all on its own, I'm going to have to eliminate Xavier. Sorry, Chuck.
The problem with Thor is, everyone expects you to run around beating the snot out of everyone, and that's just not my bag. I could totally see myself living my normal life as Shaw, supplemented by the kind of a living you can make when you've got three hundred years to play the stock market. Plus you could wander down to the nearest wildfire raging out of control, suck down all its energy, and be good to go for however long you want.
What about you, what would you choose?