Poll Position: We’re gonna need a bigger boat

With thanks to LogosGal for the question in our last "Sharing Day" thread, I present to you our almost-too-late Poll Position this week!


I'm leaving this one open to your entries, so please be responsible with any responses you add to it. Discussion to follow ... after the jump!

Here's the initial lineup, along with a few words about why I put them on the list. But really, I want to hear what you have to say about it all.

The main issue really is the nature of the threat to the universe. Some problems can't be solved with guts, while others can't be resolved by raw physical strength. So it seems to me you have to get someone who can cover a lot of bases.

  • Batman: Duh. He's Batman. According to most of comics geekdom (particularly High Bat Priest Chris Simms), no problem including the universe is too big to resist the awesome power of the Bat Snarl. Personally, you have to admit the guy's about as potent as a regular guy can be. Plus, you know he cares about humanity and would do his utmost to save it.
  • Captain America: Pretty much the same argument as Batman, assuming we're talking about Steve Rogers here, though with less snarling. He doesn't have Bruce Wayne's low animal cunning or brilliant mind, but he's a far more inspirational leader. Assuming rallying people will help in the face of universal collapse.
  • Doctor Manhattan: Incredibly powerful, possibly to the point of being able to actually create universes. So in the event of a nonrecoverable fatal error at the universe level, he could in theory just replicate the whole thing all over again, including exact duplicates of all of us. On the other hand, he's a jerk who doesn't really understand humanity any more, so he might just watch us all die as an interesting diversion for a few hours.
  • Dr. Strange: He's proven to be incredibly durable, mentally flexible, magically powerful, and physically imposing. He's smart, driven, wise, and learned. He can defend against purely physical challenges as well as mystical ones. And he's indisputably human, unlikely to leave us all high and dry.
  • The Doctor from Doctor Who: I confess I'm not a big Doctor Who fan, but LogosGal chose him and that's a good enough reason to put him on the list. I leave it to his fans to explain why he's the best choice in the comments.
  • Odin: On the other hand, I personally chose Odin when the question was asked of me. He's got a history of protecting humanity (not always in the gentlest way, mind you), he's got an entire pantheon of ass-kicking Asgardians on whom he can call, and he's a freaking god.
  • Reed Richards: If worst comes to worse and the smartest guy on the rock can't figure out how to pull our fannies from the fire, he can always call on his son to make a new universe for us. Handy, that.
  • Q from ST:TNG: I only put him on here because he's omnipotent. But he's also an even bigger jerk than Doctor Manhattan and probably won't be bothered to help unless a suave bald-pated stud of French descent were to talk him into it. Hey, wait, that's me!
  • Superman: No explanation really needed here. He's freaking Superman.
  • Thor: Like Odin, only more tied to humanity. Plus he's used to fighting on his own and is young, whereas Odin's kind of showing his age a bit.

So there are the initial choices, folks, which sounds the most appealing to you? Personally I think I might change my vote from Odin to Reed Richards. It's awfully nice having Franklin in his back pocket.

30 Responses to Poll Position: We’re gonna need a bigger boat

  1. Watson Bradshaw says:

    if the universe is sick then a Doctor is what it needs. The Doctor has saved the universe more times than anyone else on this list, from anti-matter universe invaders to the threat of the reality bomb. No one does it better!

  2. logosgal says:

    Yay! I was beginning to wonder if this was going up… πŸ™‚

    I think part of the reason I thought of the Doctor initially, now that I think about it, may have been influenced by some slight differences in the question the first time I asked it (I think it had a somewhat sci-fi bent and the multiverse it was set in wouldn’t allow summoning gods across worlds). It also may have had something to do with the fact that the scenario came indirectly out of a Doctor Who fanfiction…

    That said, I still think the Doctor is a good choice. In addition to saving the universe on a regular basis, as Watson Bradshaw pointed out, he has literally killed at least one god I can think of offhand, and has foiled the plots of countless other gods.

    Props to whoever added Gandalf. He was probably my second choice originally. There are some really good other choices on here, too, though, so I’m not going to vote just yet… Looking forward to hearing what everyone else says!

  3. Myro says:

    I’m going with Reed Richards, because once I pull him in, I can convince him that he needs to open a dimensional portal to recruit Doctor Doom to help, and frankly, Doom will not see things the same way if I were to call on him (Doom is probably not convinced Richards is qualified to hold the dry erase markers for Doom’s whiteboard). And frankly, I want two gigantic brains on this one.
    I expect Joshua will be coming on to relay from Doom how we’re all idiots for not bowing to his intellect in the first place, but c’est la vie.

  4. Vampyrist says:

    I’m going with the Doctor, as he has already saved the universe countless times and with a TARDIS, the whole universe collapsing scenario could be stopped before it occurs.

  5. Nick Hentschel says:

    The Doctor!!! He’s already save the universe about 200 times already, to the point where it’s almost a running gag! If logosgal hadn’t suggest him, *I* would have.

  6. Susie Q says:

    The Doctor also has a deep love and respect for humanity, which drives him to work towards saving them. I mean, us. And he has the sonic screwdriver.

  7. Whit says:

    I added Sherlock Holmes. I figure a drug-addled socially inept egomaniac with a virtually unstoppable brain is exactly what we’d need. πŸ™‚

  8. Anarchangel says:

    Personally I think it would be a close call between the Doctor and Reed Richards. They’ve both displayed an ability to save the known universe countless times over. The others simply don’t have the brains or the power to do so. Except Maybe Doctor Manhattan and Q but like Jeff pointed out, they probably wouldn’t bother helping us scrawny mortals.

    But I think I’d have to go with Richards. While Reed may be a bit of a self loving tool at times but, like Myro said, there’s a chance he’d be able to bring old Victor along to help out. But what REALLY tips the scales for me is the possibility of him bringing Sue Storm too. And personally I would enjoy that a lot more than spending possibly the last moments of existence in the company of an annoying Dr Who sidekick.

  9. Dan says:

    I’m going with Reed. Who better to come up with some insane gadget that will solve everything? I thought about Dr. Manhatten, but by the time you get done talking him into helping, everything would be destroyed.

  10. William A. Peterson says:

    The Doctor, of course…
    Not that I really *like* the character, mind you, but saving the entire Universe from utterly improbable threats in the most unlikely fashion is what he does!
    Reed is certainly a good second choice, though letting him call on either Franklin or Doc Doom would, in my mind, be cheating…
    That would be like picking Batman because he can always call in Superman, if he has to!
    Odin, and the rest of the Marvel Universe faux gods, don’t really do it for me, especially since Odin, in particular, is currently dead! {But, you can try again next week…} πŸ˜€

  11. Gero says:

    Well, since someone (for reasons I can’t imagine) added one of my actual “hey I pray to that guy” deities to the list, I’m gonna have to go with Vishnu…

  12. Jeff Hebert says:

    Apparently someone gets their rocks off by being so immature and unfunny that I have to go delete their entries and close off the polls to anyone else. Probably they fear someone else might have an actual creative bone in their body and submit a well-reasoned, thoughtful reply.

    Anyway, in record time a record number of stupid responses has caused me to close the poll. I left up three that were good. If you have other additions you’d want to see, leave ’em in comments and I’ll add them in myself.

    As usual, a few idiots ruin it for the rest of us.

  13. Joshua says:

    DOOM: Doom sees that most of Hebert’s mentally-challenged sycophants– whether out of ignorance (…as expected) or fear (…they should fear DOOM)– can’t seem to get Doom’s title correct; it’s Doctor Doom, not the Doctor. And what is a “TARDIS”? Nevertheless, if you mere creatures can’t bother to finish my title, then you have Doom’s permission to address me as DOOM– for today only!

    Now to address, “The One Who Doom Has Decreed Shall Live”: first and foremost, Doom places all blame on Hebert for the audacity of not including Doom on this list. Like Richard’s, the measure of his defiance will define the extent of his suffering. As for the bottom-dwellers who wouldn’t have chosen Doom even if Doom’s name were perched gloriously atop Hebert’s poll? For now, like Hebert, let them feel safe. It shall be that on Doom’s Day they shall see their sunlight-deprived flesh consumed from their bones! With their Dorito-caked fingers, they’ll desperately try to hold together what’s left of their crumbling form, all the while looking to Doom for a moment of mercy…and Doom shall look upon them as they’re destroyed and utter, “Burn”. Bah!


  14. spidercow2010 says:

    I am currently trembling before the smiley emoticon … of DOOM!

  15. Me, Myself & I says:

    Joshua (13) DOOM’s Grammar needs a little work. πŸ˜‰

  16. Captain Kicktar says:

    Galen Marek, as I put up, I mean, who wouldn’t want his help? You can just sit back and let him do all the work.

  17. B. Clouser says:

    SHERLOCK. Who wouldn’t want to see that mind at work and run along side him? He’s also bring some humor to the table, which is always good when saving the world.

  18. MScat says:

    If you simpy go by their track record almost ALL of these chracters have saved the universe before. So its not really about whether they CAN, but which would we WANT to.

    I would not want Q to save the universe. I seriously hate that guy he was the most annoying character in ST:TNG and thats INCLUDING Whoopi Goldberg.

    One of my first choices was Doctor Manhatten but I wouldn’t want to have to listen to his irritating social comentary before he actually does it. It goes like this: “COMPLAIN COMPLAIN COMPLAIN COMPLAIN *snap* universe saved”

    Im not a fan of Doctor Who (wierd I know)but I know enough about him to know that he does a good job saving the universe. And in a delightful British accent. He wouldn’t be the one to complain (at least not as much as Doctor Manhatten and even Reed Richards do). But the thing for me is: in a situation that involves THE UNIVERSE you would want to call on the one guy you KNOW. And i just dont KNOW the Doctor that well.

    My choice is Reed Richards. Sure he’s a whiney little punk but he’d get the job done. He’s a character I know well enough to call on when there’s trouble and I would trust him with the fate of the universe.

  19. Brad says:

    Well, thank goodness nobody added Liefeld! We’d all be positioned behind things to where we couldn’t see one another’s feet, FOREVER!

    I see no pickups for Odin. Well, I’m going to cheer for him. He’s another one that wouldn’t have to ask his helper, he could MUSCLE ole’ Thor into helping out if necessary. I mean, think about it, your dad has naked baby pictures of you, the God of Thunder. Even if he tries to squeeze out of it, the idea of a rep so tarnished would light a fire under him real fast.
    You get no dystopian yammerings, no whining, or talk of “I don’t know if this is going to work,” besides that, the show would probably be pretty entertaining.
    Come to think of it, when’s that 2012 coming? I’m gonna go stock up on popcorn.

  20. Amscray says:

    By the Crimson Bands of Cyttorak, the universe shall not fall apart (This week – again- for the last blasted time)! Dr. Strange is the answer because he has a better tracked record of saving many universes from falling apart with his magickal wisdom. Pow! Excelsior! ‘Nuff said!

  21. zaheelee says:

    Although I don’t really like Superman because I think he is TOO powerful and perfect, (I mean seriously, if Supes walkes into a room with a bunch of gangsters pointing guns at him, he does it because he knows that they can’t hurt him, whereas if Batman walked into the same scenario, he knows that the bullets can easily kill him, yet he still manages to take all of them out WITHOUT getting shot) I have to admit that he is the one for the job. I mean, he has saved the Universe a bunch of times!

    What? You don’t believe me? Okay, lets give a few examples just to prove my point:
    -Crisis on Infinite Earths
    -Doomsday (who, although not threatening the universe, was still so much of a threat to humanity and life itself, had to be taken care of)
    -Infinite Crisis
    -Brainiac (kind of like the Doomsday scenario)
    -Nekron (acted more as backup for Hal Jordan, but still helped)
    -etc, etc

  22. zaheelee says:

    I would also argue that the Spectre could save us all, even though I don’t really like him, either.

  23. Loki says:

    The Doctor, why? I’ll go with the most resent example, he rebooted ALL OF SPACE AND TIME! How you ask? By blowing himself up in a exploding TARDIS and asking Amy Pond to remember very hard! Of course this means stopped existing form all of space and time, He got better. That’s why.

  24. Loki says:

    EDIT: Of course this means *he stopped existing form all of space and time, He got better. That’s why.

  25. Novak says:

    As a fan of The Doctor may I add the name of another doctor. The very mean often medicated Dr. Greg House. I am sure that with the world on the line he would end up missing the answer because it is not his area, but the party would be the best.

  26. Sean Murphy says:

    This is tough, there are some great choices here. And someone even beat me to mentioning House, who was a natural after Sherlock Holmes was mentioned, since House IS Sherlock Holmes modern day and converted from detective to diagnostic specialist doctor. (Ironic, given that Holmes was loosely based on an actual doctor that taught diagnostics.)

    I think my favorite choices are Odin, and The Doctor. Odin for sheer power (with brains, after all he is the God of Wisdom and War) and The Doctor for his track record of defeating staggeringly powerful foes with ingenuity and cleverness (I know they are synonyms, he has enough to justify mentioning it twice). Anyone whom time-manipulating psychopathic super-geniuses clad in indestructible armor refer fearfully to as “The Gathering Storm” is someone I want by my side. Yeah, Reed Richards is unbelievably smart, but even he would be hard pressed to learn every language in the universe, past, present, and future, or use mathematics as a weapon. (The Doctor once scrawled some equations on a whiteboard, which caused the alien who read them to grab his head, moan, and pass out – “I knew they weren’t ready for 4 dimensional calculus yet.”) Yeah, I’m gonna have to go with the Timelord on this one.

  27. RitoruBushi says:

    I have loved comics since I was in jr. high school. Batman has undoubtedly saved the universe, single-handedly, on more than one occasion. I’m not too knowledgeable on Captain America, but he mostly fights for freedom and democracy for a single country, right? Doctor Manhattan does his superhero thing buck nekkid… I don’t think any race (human or otherwise) wants to owe the continuation of the universe to a naked, blue, human sized Smurf with a god complex. Again, not too knowledgeable on Dr. Strange, but he’s mostly adept in the mystic ways, not much room to save the entire universe. Odin is a Norse god, and, no disrespect to my Nordic kin, god characters are kind of a cheat, so I don’t really give them much credit. Reed Richards is good at saving things on a galactic scale, providing he’s up against Galactus or the Skrull. Q!!! He has god-like powers+ to the max, but he’s a self-centered sadist. He’d watch the universe crumble just for a good laugh. I don’t really think that Superman could save the ENTIRE universe in just a duo. Thor: see Odin remark. Gandalf, Hellboy, Sherlock Holmes aren’t exactly “universe savers.”

    The Doctor got my vote, and here’s why: Counting the 11th, the last three incarnations have single handedly saved the entire universe, including the whole of time, space, and existence, on his own without any help more times than all of the heroes listed above combined. That’s the job he’s assigned himself; to keep the balance of time, to preserve life, and to ensure that the universe keeps on spinnin’! The man does his job quite well. Sure he’s taken on companions, but they rarely play a major role in saving the universe. The Doctor has over 900 years of combat experience, scientific theory practice, technological advancement development, and survival skills under his belt. He’s like Yoda with a sense of humor and a sonic screwdriver instead of a lightsaber! He knows his limits, yet always presses onward. He’s fought off entire galactic armies on his own and still came out on top. He understands the term “acceptable losses,” yet refuses to allow them to happen whenever he can. Getting more specific, the 10th Doctor (who had the longest run in Doctor Who history) is probably the one Doctor who proved his worth as a “universal saver,” and how that knowledge and experience resides within the 11th, plus he’s got a new sonic screwdriver! hehe In any case The Doctor has my vote because, as I have already stated, he has proven his worthiness of the roll to save the whole of existence either in a duo or going solo.

    Again, all respect to comics. If I had the money I’d probably pick up collecting them again. However, The Doctor just happens to be the most qualified in this scenario.

  28. War Wizardess says:

    The Doctor.
    (Keep in mind I’ve only watched NuWho and a handful of classic Who stories so far)

    As other posters have described his track record and capabilities so well, I’ll just add this: He has seen more of the universe than most other heroes can imagine and is brilliant (and knows it ^^) yet he’s kept a flexibility of mind, a flair and faible for thinking outside the box, that you can throw pretty much anything at him. He’s been through so much, lost so many people along the way and had to do terrible things, that would have turned others bitter beyond recognition. He is dark at times and merciless if he has to be, but there is still so much compassion in him. Unless it’s a creature established as irrevocably evil and destructive, his first reaction to a monster is fascination – which doesn’t stop him from kicking its butt with all the ingenuity, power and trickery you can wish for.

    To me The Doctor is – most of the time – the definition of a chaotic good character, and I’d want the ultimate responsibility in the hands of someone who really _cares_. “Do you know in nine hundred years of time and space I’ve never met anyone who wasn’t important before.” So if I have to trust one character to save the universe (or puzzle it back together) it’s him.

  29. ZamuelNow says:

    In the “joking yet serious” entry, I’d say MacGyver. Give him some aluminium foil, paper clips, a radio, and a pocket knife and he can fix anything.

  30. Running down the current list:


    Batman could work, but I don’t see him saving the universe so much as putting together a team that could save the universe. He could save the universe himself if it required beating the crap out of someone.

    Captain America

    He could inspire someone to save the universe–patriotically.

    Doctor Manhattan

    He could easily save the universe, if you could motivate him to do it, and if he’d shut up long enough.

    Dr. Strange

    He not only has the power, but he could do it while rhyming like a sonafagun.

    The Doctor from Doctor Who

    War Wizardess is right on the mark here. He cares enough to do it, and can come up with insane ideas that actually work.


    He would do it, but the entire universe would wind up flat-packed, and only able to be reassembled by someone who understands arcane pictographic instructions and Allen keys.

    Reed Richards

    He couldn’t possibly save the universe right now. He’s too busy saving the universe.

    Q from ST:TNG

    Too much pontificating. Also, we’d also all wind up quacking like ducks or something until he got tired of us. And you can’t even get him to go away by making him say his name backwards. (“Ewq?”)


    What would he do, fly around the universe really fast until it rotates backwards, or kick it in the groin, or what?


    Mjolnir is not an Allen key.


    He could do it, and he’s already staffed up.


    If saving the universe involves touch typing, we’re screwed. Otherwise, he might be able to somehow muddle through.

    Sherlock Holmes

    I’m sure that once the game is afoot, his solution would be…well, you know.