Comics Features

Top 6 Strangest Animal-Themed Superheroes

Whether or not you’ve ever read a comic in your life, we are all fans of superheroes like Spider-Man, Black Panther, Catwoman and Bat… okay, I personally have no time for the dour Caped Crusader, but I’m reliably informed that others like him for some reason. But are you noticing a trend here?..


There are a bajillion-plus superheroes and villains based around animals. Some have powers like them, others merely emulate their style. But every once in a while, we find a downright bizarre superhero who has chosen the ODDEST animal to imitate. And we’re here to pay tribute to them! Let’s take a gander (geddit?) at a few of the strangest animal-themed pack.

DISCLAIMER ALERT! DISCLAIMER ALERT! The following is my own personal opinion. If you have a different opinion… that’s okay. I respect you and your opinion. No, really. I’m totally okay with you not agreeing with me. Life is too short for people to bicker about differing- PSYCH!


6. Quailman

We’ve all imagined ourselves as superheroes, haven’t we? I personally pictured myself as Berry-Man, the superhero with the proportionate strength of a berry who can throw berries with unerring accuracy. But that’s probably just me.

Possibly the only person whose superhero fantasies are just as lame is Doug Funnie, from the cartoon series Doug, who always imagined himself as the superhero Quailman. Yeah… of all the birds in all the animal kingdom, this kid wanted to be a quail. Thing is though, he never actually became his alter-ego: Quailman was always imaginary. At least I tried to make a Berry-Man costume. But the less said about that the better.

What’s even weirder is that Doug didn’t even imagine himself in a proper costume. The imaginary costume looked like he’d made it himself. Badly. He actually wore his underpants on the outside! Kid… it’s your imagination! Use it! Having said that, this might have been because Quailman was a parody of superheroes, so maybe this was all intentional. Nevertheless, it was a weird idea for a weird superhero. A quail… really? I mean, it’s no Berry Man. And done.


5. The Armadillo

Whilst technically a super villain, The Armadillo deserves a mention in this list for two reasons. Number one, he was part of the fifty-state initiative in Marvel comics, following the Civil War story, making him briefly a super hero. Number two… HE’S A BLOODY ARMADILLO! What more do you need?

This character isn’t just ridiculous though. Oh, no. He’s ridiculous… on PURPOSE. His creator, Mark Gruenwald, said that the Armadillo “is just a silly monster I wanted to throw in as kind of a joke…”. And, you know what, it’s actually a fairly amusing one! First appearing in Captain America #308, the story goes that Antonio Rodriguez was given superhero strength and durability by Dr. Karl Malus. The experiment bonded Antonio to the costume he was wearing, making him look like an over-sized armadillo. Ever since then he’s been trying to steal enough money to be able to get out of his costume and get back to a normal life. Hey, wait, that’s not funny! That’s tragic and endearing! How dare you ruin a hilarious character by making him sympathetic! What’s that? He later joined the Unlimited Class Wresting Federation and became a super-powered wrestler? Oh, good. He’s funny again.


4. The Pumaman

This low-budget Italian produced film was cited by one of the stars of the film, Donald Pleasance, as the worst film he has ever been in. Given his appearance in both Halloween 4 and 5, this should be a pretty good indicator as to how bad it is.

Basically, the idea is that Donald Pleasance, a.k.a. Dr Kobras, finds an Aztec mask that allows him to control people’s minds, which he plans on using to, what else, take over the world. The only person who can stop him is The Pumaman! A person bestowed with puma-like powers by the gods! Or aliens. Technically both. Or neither. It’s difficult to explain… this film is really, really bad. Eventually, the man who will become the Pumaman is discovered. How? By being thrown him out a window, of course. Ah, the classic superhero origin story. The call to adventure by way of defenestration.

What follows is a sheer car crash of a film that fails at almost every turn. But the crowing peak of awfulness? They shamelessly put the freaking Death Star on the poster for this film. Look it up! There’s no mistaking it. I mean… how dare they? This film came out three years after Star Wars: A New Hope, so there’s no excuse. Shame on them!

About the author

Scott Meridew