Welcome to another exciting edition of Top 5 Friday! I know it has been awhile since one of these have gone up, but after the conclusion of The Button, my mind began to race like Jay Garrick at the end of the story arc. The clock is counting down towards him a big showdown between the DC universe and Dr. Manhattan, with Superman being the main target. While it is very easy to say that a Man of Steel can stand up to the Nuclear Man of Tomorrow, I don't think he is going to be the one that defeats him. With all of the stories and mysteries going on, I began thinking up a list of potential candidates that could stand up to the threat of Manhattan, which is what we will be going over today. As always this is an opinion based list, so if you don't see a character you wanted, I apologize. With the introductions out-of-the-way, let us dive into this week's list...
5: The Flash Family
For some reason, Manhattan has forced major players in The Flash's roster into the Speed Force. As of right now, it has been shown that Wally West and Jay Garrick were forced in there. This brings up the question: what other speedsters are in the Speed Force? We haven't heard from Bart Allen(The real Bart, not Bar Torr from the new 52 teen titans series), Max Mercury, Jesse and Johnny Quick, Hunter Zolomon etc. There have been dozens of speedsters before the beginning of the New 52, and while there were quite a few during that time, it seemed like there was only one "speedster hero": Barry Allen. Granted Barry Allen is considered to be the most Powerful of speedsters, but considering how powerful Dr. Manhattan is, he is definitely going to need help. One speedster might not be able to defeat the 'blue god,' we saw where that got Thawne, but consider what could be possible if we had a small platoon of speedsters that could fix all the time alterations Manhattan had made.
4: Mr. Oz
Mr. Oz has continued to hide in the shadows, moving pieces in his unusual game. I say unusual because nothing about his actions seem to have rhyme or reason to go against the heroes of Earth. He kidnapped Tim Drake, which dealt a powerful blow to the Bat-Family's moral, but all of his other prisoners have been powerful Superman villains. So what gives? He has enough firepower to wipe out six members of the Justice League with Doomsday alone. Throw in an interdimensional giant that was able to capture several supermen and you have a threat that could annihilate the Earth. But what if he wasn't trying to destroy the Earth, the League or even Superman? What if he was gathering these powerful monsters to help fight the coming threat of Manhattan? The Giant, Doomsday, and Mxyzptlk were villains that were a threat to Superman's life whenever they encountered. You know who else has been called a Superman? Dr. Manhattan. Could the villains Oz has been gathering stand up to Manhattan? Only time will tell.
3: Volthoom the First Lantern
The man can't die. That's the truth of it. Nekron himself let him leave the plane of death after he admitted that he can't be killed. Why? He's connected to the emotional spectrum. Well, that should paint an easy target on what Manhattan should destroy, right? Not quite. Whether you are a fan of it or not, the story arc Lights Out gives the complication that the lights are basically the soul of the universe. When all of the soul is used up, the universe collapses and creates a Big Bang, creating a new one. So what does this mean? For some reason, Manhattan has only focused on weakening the characters rather than flat out kill them. If his actions so far have proven anything it's that he has the power to alter reality itself... Possibly even destroy a universe. But he doesn't. Why? My guess he NEEDS the DC universe for a reason. Whether it be to lord over a new world or become the hero of it, he doesn't want it gone. So when you're a character who is connected to the very soul of the universe the villain wants to keep, you're practically untouchable.
2: Darkseid or Highfather
How do you kill a god? In most stories, the answer is often another god. There are few gods as powerful as the leaders of Apokolips and New Genesis. Both are masters of combat, with Highfather being a master strategist and Darkseid being a brutal monster. The pair are already extremely dangerous, taking groups of powerful people to cause them to fall back. They know how gods think and their battles between one another are near cataclysmic in nature, so to see a battle between these new gods and the newest god would be a spectacle to see. If I had to pick one of the two gods that would be ready to fight, it would be Darkseid. Highfather's warrior path seems to end at the conclusion of Godhead, as he now leads his people in the rebuilding of New Genesis. Darkseid is also due for some spotlight since his 'death' at the end of Darkseid War. Having him return to combat this new threat would be a good place to start.
1: Captain Atom
Is it just me or has Captain Atom gotten a bit more attention in the past few years than he has pre-Flashpoint? He had his own series, was a major player in the Justice League Future's End tie-ins, as well as the center of one of the Multiversity issues, and currently has his own miniseries. The character is cool, but he is a C-list character. There are many C-list characters that have gotten the amount of attention that he has in a long time. I believe all of this attention is because DC is planning something with him. What if this reason is that he's the one that's supposed to face his multiversal counterpart in a battle for the fate of the world? With every new series and appearance, he shifts more and more to look like Dr. Manhattan. This implies that either he is meant to become the villain of this story or become powerful enough to face Manhattan. With all that has been going on, I certainly hope for the latter.
That's it for this week's Top 5 Friday! Who do you think can stand against the might of Manhattan? Where do you think this storyline will lead next? Leave a comment and I'll see you next time!