They're perhaps the two most commonly mocked heroes of their respective fictional universes; DC's Aquaman, created by Mort Weisinger and Paul Norris in 1941, and Marvel's Cyclops, created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in 1963. One is the stalwart ruler of an underwater kingdom; the other is the redoubtable leader of a group of outcast mutants. They're both heroes who have overcome great obstacles, lived extraordinary tales, fought terrible villains, and experienced remarkable romances.
To some fans, they're incredibly cool. To others, they're irredeemably dorky, perhaps especially in contrast to their more beloved colleagues like Batman and Wolverine. In fact, some comics fans would say that Arthur Curry is the worst. Others would say the same about Scott Summers. Today we're asking you to decide... which of them is the best?
To help you make your decision, we've asked Aquaman fan Benito Cereno and Cyclops fan Chris Haley to make the case for each of their guys. Read their remarks below, and cast your vote in what may prove one of the most contentious questions in all of superhero comics.
For decades hack comedians have focused on Aquaman's ability to communicate with marine life, but readers often fail to consider the strength, stamina, and durability that's necessary for life on the ocean floor. Consider, then, that Aquaman is a super-human even among the people of Atlantis. He's got more going on than chatting with Nemo. Plus, he deserves respect as a founding Justice Leaguer and one of only a few characters to be continuously published since the 1940s, and he's literally King Arthur: a monarch who rules 75% of the Earth's surface and protects it from the terrors of the deep. If you don't think underwater bulletproof Ned Stark is pretty rad, the problem is you, not Aquaman. [Benito Cereno]
Cyclops has endured a lot of dismissive slights about being a boy scout, but Cyclops is a guy with the power to blow that "bad boy" Wolverine into space, and he doesn’t, no matter how much of a hard time the Canuck gives him or how many times he hits on his wife. Cyclops keeps it together, because his entire life is about keeping it together in order to take care of others. Whether it was keeping his little brother alive as they were forced out of a plane with one parachute, or keeping unruly mutants alive in a world that hates and fears them, he keeps it in check. He could destroy everything around him, but he keeps it in check. He's the guy you can count on to do the hard work it takes to keeps it all together. [Chris Haley]