Incredibles 2 is about to hit the big screen, bringing one of our favorite super-families back to delight a new generation. The original Incredibles introduced fans to this suburban family with a secret — they are all natural superheroes! The super-strong Mr. Incredible and his super-flexible wife Elastigirl team up with their two children, speedster Dash and invisible girl Violet, to take down a supervillain (and leave the incredibly powerful superbaby at home with a sitter). It’s a sweet, funny movie, and one that plays with the idea of family dynamics affecting a superhero mission.
Of course, the Incredibles are far from the only super-family in the world of pop culture. Comic books are famous for creating complex super-families, with generations of powered heroes (and villains) all battling it out against villains. And occasionally, against each other! While there are also families’of heroes who are essentially expanded teams (like the Bat-family), there are others who are all related by blood, not just by intention. These are some of our favorite examples.
The Fantastic Four
Often called Marvel’s first family, the Fantastic Four are one of the original (and best known) super-teams that include mostly related heroes. Of the original four, three are literal family: Sue Storm (Invisible Girl) and Johnny Storm (The Human Torch) are brother and sister, and Sue married Reed Richards (Mr. Fantastic). In addition, Sue and Reed later have two children, Franklin Richards (who is one of the most powerful mutants in the Marvel Universe) and Valeria Richards.
Several comic families have their roots in ancient mythology, and that usually comes with convoluted family relationships — like those of the Norse Gods on Asgard. Of course, the relationship between Thor, his brother Loki, and their father Odin has been wonderfully explored in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But in the comics, this family is a lot larger, with several other siblings (like Vidar, Tyr, and Balder) rounding out the Asgardian mythology.
One of several interconnected mutant families is that of the Summers, with famous mutants Jean Grey and Cyclops (Scott Summers) right at the heart of it. Scott Summers himself is one of three brothers, with Alex Summers growing up alongside his brother Scott and also joining the X-Men family. Their third brother, Gabriel, didn’t surface until much later, along with their father, who became a superhero space pilot. When Scott married Jean Grey, the family tree got even bigger, with various alternate futures, clones and time-traveling children. This added characters like Cable, Stryfe, Hope Summers, and X-Man to this massive, multi-Earth family.
The Flash Family
While the Flash Family can be expanded to include many speedster characters who aren’t actually related to one another, the core family are actually all part of the same family line. The best-known Flash, Barry Allen is married to Iris West, the aunt of a later Flash, Wally West. Both Wally and Iris also have speedster children, with Wally the father to Jai and Iris, and Iris the mother to the Tornado Twins, Don and Dawn. The West-Allen family tree expands still further with children like Bart and Irey Allen, and the fastest family alive continues to grow!
The Wakandan Royal Family
This famous Marvel family has recently become much better known, thanks to the Black Panther movie, but they’ve always been a fan favorite in the comics…and enjoy some X-Men crossover ties as well! The MCU features the late King T’Chaka, as well as his children T’Challa (the Black Panther) and the brilliant Shuri. Not yet in the films are T’Challa’s wife, the famous X-Men mutant Ororo Monroe, and their child Azari, or T’Challa and Shuri’s various half-siblings, adopted siblings, and cousins. But it is early days for the MCU’s Black Panther, and more of these Wakandan royals may yet make their appearance!
The Superman Dynasty
We couldn’t leave out one of the best-loved superheroes of all time, especially when he comes from an illustrious dynasty of superheroes! Of course, Superman himself has a child with Lois Lane, Jon Kent, who is one of many Superboys who have appeared over the years, including Connor Kent, a Superman Clone. Superman and Lois have also had a Kryptonian foster son, while Lois’s sister Lucy Lane has herself become Superwoman. And Superman’s cousin Kara is Supergirl. Of course, this is before getting too many alternate universes or timelines involved!
Finally, we have one of the most sprawling families in the mutant universe, Magneto’s vast brood. Scarlet Witch and her brother Quicksilver are both the children of this metal-bending mutant, but they also have a half-sister, Polaris. (Polaris also has a mutant sister, Zaladane, although their connection was never proven.) Magneto is also now a grandfather in the Marvel universe, as Scarlet Witch has a daughter, Nocture, with Nightcrawler, as well as two children with Vision, Wiccan and Speed. Quicksilver also has a family of his own — a daughter, Luna, with Inhuman Crystal.
Which is your favorite comic book super-family? Tweet @quirkbooks let us know!