"I'm the best there is at what I do and what I do isn't very nice."
As any Marvel fan will know, Wolverine says this troubling line while referring to his skills as a fighter and a killer. Logan has mastered almost every form of armed and unarmed fighting styles and even some styles from extraterrestrial beings like the Shi'Ar. So, when I confidently call Wolverine the best there is, I'm not just referring to his fighting prowess. I'm talking about him being the best comic book hero ever created.
So, how could Wolverine be the best hero around with heroes like Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Spider-Man, and Captain America around? IGN.com has ranked him number four on their all-time heroes list behind Spider-Man, Batman and Superman, so why am I ranking him higher than the greats that came before him? Well, for those of you who haven't already closed the article in anger, allow me to break down the qualities that make Logan the best comic hero of all time.
He Does More Than Just Beat Up Villains
When people talk about heroics, they think about fighting bad guys. However, what makes a hero has a lot to do with what happens when they aren't fighting. How are they making a world a better place? Logan spent his time as an X-Men member, becoming more than just their goon and killer.
Logan was a brother to a lot of young X-Men (chief among them was Kitty Pryde and Jubilee). When Kitty was possessed by Logan's old sensei Ogun, Logan showed her how to fight him off. Logan also helped train her as a fighter, giving Kitty skills that she'd use for the rest of her life.
Logan and Jubilee's relationship was a lot like Batman and Robin's. Logan helped Jubilee get revenge against the people that killed her parents (like Batman did for Robin) and she ended up being Wolverine's sidekick and kid sister for years to come.
But it wasn't just those two that Logan helped out. When Logan didn't like that Cyclops was treating the younger mutants more like soldiers than kids, he reopened the school in Westchester. This gave the younger mutants a choice. They could stay and be soldiers and train to fight for a world or they could go to school and still train to use their powers, but also still be kids. He even took a young mutant, Quentin Quire, and turned him into a good person.
Quentin was Hell bent on being the next Magneto, but Wolverine saw something in him and tried to make him a better person – and it worked. Quentin even went on to save the day on multiple occasions, helping the alpha X-Men team take out the new Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. Despite what Quentin may have said, the comics have shown that he secretly loved his time at the school and even loved Logan to an extent. Quentin even mourned Logan's death, proving the changes he'd made to these young mutants' lives.
Wolverine notably did this without the riches that Bruce Wayne has, and was a lot less judgmental too. Bruce has taken a lot of people under his wing, but not in the caring way that Logan has.
Despite His Abilities, Wolverine Still Suffers
Readers also usually take Logan's will to sacrifice himself too lightly. Because of Logan's healing factor, it's assumed that it's easy for him to take punishment. Well, fun fact, all the punishment he takes still hurts. Every time he's shot or has to regrow a body part, Logan feels it. Even after he heals, the pain isn't over. In an X-Men Unlimited story titled 'The Healing', Logan talks about the tole it takes on his body and mind after his body has healed. He explains that he still feelis phantom pain even though the wound is healed or the limb has regrown.
Most notably, even when Wolverine didn't have his healing factor, Logan was willing to die for his family – even giving up his life for some strangers in Death Of Wolverine.
Wolverine has spent the majority of his time running around, saving the world and the universe with the X-Men. In 2006, Wolverine became an Avenger on top of his duties as a member of the X-Men and a teacher. Despite all that, Wolverine still finds time to save people on his solo missions.
He's Focused On The Tasks That Matter
During Marvel Civil War, while Captain America and Iron Man spent most of their time fighting each other over the law, Wolverine went after the people who caused the explosion that killed hundreds of people. Wolverine made sure that he didn't only make Nitro pay for causing the explosion, but also punished Walter Declun, the one responsible for enhancing Nitro's powers.
Declun isn't someone with redeemable qualities. He's a man who tried to make money off the deaths of millions of people. Sometimes you have to put these villains down, and Wolverine wasted no time in killing Declun. Villains like Joker, Green Goblin, and Darkseid are imprisoned and consistently break loose in order to cause further chaos, but when Logan knew enough was enough, he did exactly what he needed to do with Declun.
Wolverine embodies all of the qualities of the great heroes. He doesn't have the money Bruce Wayne does, but he still manages to have more contacts because of his lifespan. Wolverine also doesn't have the strength of powers of Spider-Man and Superman, but he does have an underrated and often overlooked intelligence, which he using to defeat more than his share of villains. Wolverine possesses all of the qualities that make him the greatest hero of all time, and then-some. He isn't as wholesome, but that's part of his charm and helps make him the best there is at what he does. And what he does isn't very nice.