IMDb Polls

Poll: A Different Kind of Origin Story

Before these characters could have ever graced our favorite comics or movies, they first had to have been created. Illustrators take inspiration from many different sources. Which one do you find the most interesting?

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Make Your Choice

  1. Vote!
     

    Tyrone Power in The Mark of Zorro (1940)

    Batman based on Robert the Bruce and Mad Anthony Wayne as well as Zorro in The Mark of Zorro (1940),The Bat Whispers (1930), Doc Savage, Dick Tracy, The Shadow, Sherlock Holmes
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    Douglas Fairbanks in The Iron Mask (1929)

    Superman based on characters portrayed by Douglas Fairbanks and Harold Lloyd for attitude and demeanor

    John Carter (2012), the novel, for a base of the characters abilities

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    Conrad Veidt in The Man Who Laughs (1928)

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    "The Sound and the Fury" Yul Brynner 1959 Twentieth Century Fox

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    Denzel Washington in Malcolm X (1992)

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    Leonardo DiCaprio in The Aviator (2004)

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    Wonder Woman (2017)

    Wonder Woman based on Elizabeth Holloway Marston (wife of William Moulton Marston, Wonder Woman creator)
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    Hugh Jackman in X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)

    A little context as Wolverine was initially a throw away character against the Hulk in 1974 (he wore a helmet so you can't see his face), but eventually Logan was unmasked.

    Wolverine based on Tim 'Dr. Hook' McCracken from Slap Shot (1977)

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    Arleen Sorkin at an event for Days of Our Lives (1965)

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    Jean Harlow

    Catwoman based on Bob Kane's cousin Ruth Steel and her sex appeal from actress Jean Harlow
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    Kenne Duncan in The Green Archer (1940)

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    Hugo Weaving in Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)

    Red Skull based on Hot fudge sundae with a cherry on top

    Quote from co-creator Joe Simon

    "I was always thinking about heroes and villains, with all sorts of ideas swimming around in my head…I had a hot fudge sundae sitting in front of me, with the vanilla ice cream, and the hot fudge is running down the side. It was intriguing. The hot fudge looked like limbs—legs, feet, and hands—and I’m thinking to myself. Gee, this’d make an interesting villain, I mused. We’ll call him Hot Fudge … Just put a face on him, and have him ooze all over the place. But I looked again at the sundae, and I saw the big cherry on top. The cherry looked like a skull. “Wow,” I said to myself. “Red Skull … that sounds good.”

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    March of the Penguins (2005)

    Penguin based on

    Bill Finger's Quote on the inspiration

    "[The Penguin] was inspired by emperor penguins, who reminded [me] or stuffy English gentlemen in tuxedos."

    Bob Kane's Quote on the inspiration

    "…the little penguin who appeared in print to advertise Kool menthol cigarettes and also hawked them on the radio with his insistent falsetto slogan “Smoke Kooools!”

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    Jack Palance in City Slickers (1991)

    Darkseid based on Jack Palance appearance and Adolf Hitler/Richard Nixon personality
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    Diana Rigg and George Lazenby in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)

    Talia al Ghul based on Tracy in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969) and also influenced by 1930's Fu Manchu novels.
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    Topher Grace in Spider-Man 3 (2007)

    Venom was actually created by a fan in 1982 as a suggestion for a new Spiderman outfit. Marvel paid the fan $220 for the design and Venom made his debut in 1984.
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    Sting and Andy Summers in Can't Stand Losing You: Surviving the Police (2012)

    John Constantine based on Sting in terms of likeness and style.
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    Stan Lee at an event for Hulk (2003)

    J. Jonah Jameson based on Stan Lee ( a far more angry Stan Lee)
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    Andrew Garfield in The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)

    Spider-Man based on a 1930's American pulp-magazine titled The Spider.
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    Boris Karloff in Frankenstein (1931)

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    Glenda Farrell in I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang (1932)

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    Lon Chaney in The Phantom of the Opera (1925)

    Clayface based on Lon Chaney in The Phantom of the Opera (1925). Name comes from the combination of Boris Karloff and Basil Rathbone
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    Bela Lugosi in Chandu on the Magic Island (1935)

    Dr. Stephen Strange based on the Chandu the Magician (1932) radio program of the 1930's
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    "The Avengers" Diana Rigg 1968 ABC

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    Sydney Greenstreet

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    Bettie Page

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    Spider-Man (1994)

    Deadpool based on a couple of established comic book characters namely Spider-Man, Wolverine, and Deathstroke.
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    Fred MacMurray in Double Indemnity (1944)

    Shazam the Wizard based on Superman in terms of power and actor Fred MacMurray for appearance.