ByJames Hill, writer at

5. Michael Jon Carter (Booster Gold)

I haven't read many comics with Booster Gold in them, but what I do know paints him as a kind of 'everyman.' He comes from the future and uses his futuristic technology to make himself seem like a superhero in our time.

While he can be arrogant (and a bit of a showboat), he's really just done what every one of us fans would: go back to be with his heroes. Booster overcomes a tough personal past and travels to the past so that he can be a peer with his heroes--and try to emulate their example.

Booster Gold
Booster Gold

4. Roy Harper (Speedy / Red Arrow / Arsenal)

Roy Harper, better known as Speedy and then Red Arrow and eventually Arsenal, was a sidekick of Green Arrow before eventually ending up with Jason Todd (Robin and then Red Hood) and his Outlaws. As an Outlaw, Roy settles into an easy-going personality, but his life is filled with tragedy. He grows up in a rough neighborhood with a troubled childhood. He gets his arm cut off. He is even addicted to heroin at one point.

The point is, Roy started with nothing, gained a lot, lost a lot, and ended up finding peace within himself. He isn't perfect and he has no powers, but he puts his life and limbs on the line on a daily basis. Roy struggled to find his way, but he found it. Something we all strive for.

3. Tim Drake (Red Robin / Robin)

Unlike most people in comics, Tim Drake isn't an orphan. He didn't have a life of tragedy. He just happened to have a natural gift for detective work and a strong internal drive. He convinced a reluctant Batman to take him on as Robin after discovering his secret identity. Any man that can convince Bruce Wayne to change his mind is a force to be reckoned with, but the situation is more impressive considering he was the next Robin after the death of Jason Todd.

Tim is particularly relatable because he has no powers and has no history of tragedy. He lives and finds success through his own will and determination.

2. Barry Allen (The Flash)

Barry Allen, aka The Flash, is the fastest man alive. And may also be the saddest. Barry gets his powers from a lightning accident. Using the Speed Force he can run fast, vibrate through walls, and travel through time. That sounds like a pretty great move set. Heck, you could go back and buy Apple stock, see any band in concert, and stop your mother from being murdered. can't.

Barry does go back in time to stop his mom's murder, but doing so alters the entire timeline of the DC universe. After much soul searching he decides that he must allow his mother's murder so that the timeline will revert to normal. What's worse? His mother was killed by one of his rivals. If Barry isn't a hero then he doesn't experience his life's greatest tragedy. Talk about a dilemma.

Barry struggles with loss. He also has a wife, a family, and descendants who are also Speedsters. He has all of the traits that we can identify with. But ultimately, it's his willingness to sacrifice his personal desires for the greater good that let us feel his pain.

1. Dick Grayson (Nightwing)

The first member of the Bat family. The first Robin. The most well known sidekick in comics. Dick Grayson loses two loving families when his parent are murdered: his biological family and everyone at Haley's Circus. He eventually gets taken in by Bruce and trained by Batman. As great as that sounds, Bruce isn't really father of the year. He is a hard man who believes that the path to happiness involves never allowing loss. He seeks perfection and will never escape the shadow cast by his parents' murder.

What I love about Dick is that he avoids that pitfalls that trap his surrogate father. Dick finds joy and happiness in life; he isn't held back by his losses. He also isn't as skilled in combat or detection, but he fights anyway. Dick is human and faces his past difficulties as well as his current ones. Dick does what we all want to: he escapes his past and learns from it.


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