by    in Opinion Graph, Ranker Comics

A Cluster Analysis of the Superpower Opinion Graph produces 5 Superhero types

If you could have one superpower, which would you choose?  Data from the Ranker list “Badass Superpowers We’d Give Anything to Have” improves on the age-old classroom ice breaker question by letting people rank all of the superpowers in order of how much they would want them.  Because really, unless you’re one of the X-men, you probably would have more than one power. So, if you could have a collection of superpowers, what kind of superhero would you be?

Using Gephi and data from Ranker’s Opinion Graph, we ran a cluster analysis on people’s votes on the superpowers list to determine what groupings of superpowers different people wanted.

This analysis grouped superpowers into 5 clusters, which we interpreted to represent unique superhero types.

 

The Overall Superpower Opinion Graph

Allpowers

 

 

The 5 Types of Superheroes

    god

1. The Creationist God: This superhero type is characterized by creation and destruction, Old-Testament Christian God-style. Notable superpowers: the ability to create/destroy worlds, die and come back to life, have gods’ weapons (Thor’s Hammer, Zeus’ Thunderbolt), remove others’ senses, and resurrect the dead.

timelord

2. The Time Lord: This superhero type is basically The Doctor from Dr. Who. Notable superpowers: omnipotence, travel to other dimensions, open portals to anywhere, and travel beyond the omniverse.

elementalist

3. The Elementalist: This superhero type has the ability to manipulate the elements and use them as weapons to their advantage. Notable superpowers: manipulation of water, fire, weather, and plants, ability to shapeshift, shoot ice, and lightning and fire.

superman

4. The Superhuman: This superhero type is humans+, with enhanced human senses and decreased human limitations. Notable superpowers: sense danger, x-ray vision, walk through walls, super speed, mind reading, flight, super strength, and enhanced flexibility.

zen

5. The Zen Master: This superhero type sounds a bit like being permanently on mind-altering psychoactive substances crossed with Gandhi. Notable superpowers: speech empowerment, spiritual enlightenment, and infinite appetite!!.

 

-Kate Johnson

by    in Pop Culture, Popular Lists

List of the Week-Con

Coming this October to the Lawrence, Kansas, Holiday Inn… I hope. Definitely going to have to make some last-minute phone calls if I’m really going to pull this off. But I figure, if Comic-Con can get 130,000 people to flood into San Diego, then surely a week-long celebration of Ranker lists could attract a minimum of 200 times that number to the jewel in the middle of Central Kansas’s crown.

Anyway, I think we’d definitely have a panel on writing good introductions to “List of the Week” blog posts that aren’t too long, and that segue neatly into the main body of the post. Because I need to learn how to do that. Here’s what happened this week!

Comic-Con is Literally Still Going On As I Type This

I’m fairly certain they’ve redesigned the San Diego Comic-Con schedule so that the event technically never ends. As soon as they begin tearing down this year’s booths, the next year’s ones will start going up in their place. Kevin Smith gets a 20 minute rest period in between podcasts, at least. It feels like we’ve been getting a steady stream of Comic-Con news since roughly the final quarter of the Pleistocene Era. (“Avengers! Coming in just several tens of thousands of years!”)

Since Ranker has such a massive library of great lists about comic books and comic book characters, it seems like a great time to take a quick browse through the library…

– Our CrowdRanked list of the Most Ridiculous Superheroes Ever continues to grow, though I’m not sure how you could ever top Bouncing Boy. He’s a guy named Chuck Taine (so already…weird… ) He accidentally drinks a “super plastic formula” which he mistakes for soda pop. (Who’s going around drinking random items in bottles and just assuming that it’s soda?) Now he has the power to inflate his body into the shape of a ball.

Oh, no, wait, it’s just Bud Light.

– Now that superhero films have become such a part of the mainstream culture, the phenomenon of actual people dressing up in costumes and fighting crime (or just one another) has also exploded. One need only peruse the mighty and ferocious battles in our list of the Greatest Real-Life Superhero Brawls to see that masked vigilantism is on the rise. And also to get a little worried for the future of our species. Both of those.

– Finally, this rundown of superheroes who have disabilities includes a number of well-known characters – your Batgirls, your Daredevils – but also brought to mind some lesser-known crusaders for goodness and justice as well. For example, Misty Knight, a sort-of riff on Cleopatra Jones or Foxy Brown, only with a robotic arm this time.

If they ever do a movie of this character, they’d have to CGI that fro. David Hyde Pierce can do the voice-over!

RIP Amy Winehouse

Not all of this week’s news was fanboys and nerdgasms, of course. There was also the death at age 27 of singer Amy Winehouse, whose struggles with alcohol and drug abuse had become a matter of public record.

They tried to make me write a snarky caption underneath this Amy Winehouse video. I said no, no, no.

Winehouse unfortunately joins the CrowdRanked list of rock stars who died before their time, with the most potential for great future recordings. Right now, she’s at #26. It will be interesting to see if she moves up or down once the shock of her passing wears off.

Entourage Ends

Tonight kicks off the very last season of HBO’s probing, epic, sweeping series “Entourage,” based on the true story of some douchebags who moved to LA and went to a lot of parties with B-level celebrities, often with a timely side project to promote. It was this or another season of “Deadwood.” Thank goodness they took the classy route.

So in similarly sophisticated fashion, Ranker users are voting on the hottest “Entourage” ladies of all time. (My money’s on Emmanuelle Chriqui, but any list featuring Carla Gugino is suddenly that much more interesting.)

Remember…this is a family blog…a family blog…

by    in Popular Lists

It's a Rundown…It's a Poll…No, it's the List of the Day!

Greetings, true Rankers. Today’s List of the Day finds us in the heart of Crime City, where valiant Ranker user SaintMort is rattling off a list of all the superheroes with some kind of disability. (Seems fitting on the week of San Diego’s Comic Con, when so many people will travel to California to celebrate costumed superheroes, heavy drinking, movie studio swag and, of course, Twilight movies! Squeeeeeee!)

The screaming fans are already lining up at Hall H to see us… I’m scared. Hold me.

Handicapped superheroes aren’t really as rare as you might think. Lots of characters only get their powers in the first place after suffering through some kind of freak accident. Like Matt Murdock being blinded by radioactive waste, but also attaining super-sonar! And a staggering lack of basic fashion sense! Or consider the case of Dr. Stephen Strange, a neurosurgeon whose hands are damaged in a car accident, but who then gets invited to learn all the secrets of the mystic arts.

Drive safe, kids, or you may end up flying through space leaping out of psychedelic skulls. Wait, that actually sounds not so bad.

As well, a common comic book trope seems to be “The very thing that makes you powerful also can make you vulnerable,” so it makes sense that some characters with rare and unnatural abilities would also have some pretty significant disadvantages. Just kind of a bummer, though…