Marvel and DC have some of the most outrageously powerful characters in fictional media. Of course, the superhero genre tends to go that way since the main characters are superpowered individuals. However, space and the concept of a multiverse really expanded the worldbuilding and increased the strength of the characters. Marvel’s Galactus is one of the most notable and strongest characters, threatening the universe regularly. DC’s Dr. Manhattan was a nuclear physicist who transformed into a godlike creature after being part of the radioactive particle test, and since then, has been a powerful being to be reckoned with. So, who would win in this epic battle, Dr. Manhattan or Galactus?
If we pit Dr. Manhattan and Galactus against each other, the DC representative will win in more fights against the Devourer of the Worlds. Galactus does have cosmic power on his side, which is immeasurable; however, besides destroying, he cannot create and manipulate reality like Dr. Manhattan. Galan also has an incredible source of power, vast knowledge, and the ability to do everything, but the esteemed Doctor is so powerful that the fifth dimension imp, Mr. Mxyzptlk, admits it exceeds his abilities – at least in one aspect, Dr. Manhattan is just one tier below The Presence, the literal maker and god of the DC Universe.
These are the standard versions of the characters, meaning that we will pit Dr. Manhattan post-DC Rebirth and Galan after the happenings of the ‘Eternity War.’ We will use the best-of-seven score metric, and the first character that gets to the fourth point will win the ultimate battle. If you’re interested in this discussion, stay with us until the end.
This section includes many different aspects of the character, like mental strength, mental durability, pure knowledge, and just strategic awareness in combat. Of course, when discussing Jonathan Osterman and Galan, both characters are in a league of their own since they have insane “stats” and feats regarding their intelligence in comics.
Let’s start with Dr. Manhattan. Even before he became Dr. Manhattan, Jonathan Osterman was an extremely prolific scientist in quantum physics. Now, after the Manhattan Project that saw Dr. Osterman disintegrating by the intrinsic field experiments, a new, much vastly powerful superbeing gained insane sensory data expansion and intellect.
This meant that Dr. Manhattan was indeed perceiving time and reality differently from everyone else – he could see past, present, and future simultaneously. The Nigh-Omniscience came a bit later, but when he reached that point, Dr. Manhattan became the strongest being in the universe, potentially even farther. Dr. Mahnattan’s knowledge of the multiverse transcended even more, meaning he could see any time available in reality and even see timelines that didn’t even exist.
With the knowledge of the metaverse and everything included in it, Dr. Manhattan used that to create a new reality that we now know as Earth-Prime. Dr. Manhattan was responsible for changing a whole DC continuation, which is not a small feat.
Galan is also extremely powerful, especially with his unlimited power source, The Power Cosmic. The power does give Galactus many powers, including the vast intelligence that transcends 99 percent of the beings in the universe. It is confirmed by Marvel Comics that Galactus has one of the most brilliant and advanced minds in the universe and that even Reed Richards cannot determine how far Galactus’ intellect and knowledge go.
Of course, the telepathic powers the Power Cosmic bestows on Galactus are something else – once, he defied the strongest Earth’s telepaths, Magneto and Professor Xavier, with little effort. Galan is intellectually strong and sound, but he cannot stand against the likes of Dr. Manhattan – the DC representative is so mentally powerful and knowable that he literally knows everything that happened, it’s happening, that will happen, and, strangely, what didn’t ever happen.
Dr. Manhattan takes the point in this section.
Dr. Manhattan (1) : 0 Galactus
Strength and stamina
Strength is tricky here because Dr. Manhattan comes from his mind and abilities, and this section is about raw power and how much one can lift. To be completely fair to Manhattan, his whole “shtick” is that he doesn’t seem to care and that he needs minimal effort to destroy someone.
The fact that he is a literal god does go in his favor since the most powerful beings in the universe are strong in this sense as well. One of the feats that confirmed his powers comes from Dr. Manhattan’s ability to shapeshift into any size, and when he is a literal giant (coincidentally like Galan), the DC’s reluctant hero does showcase his pure strength.
Galactus has been the same since his intimidating stature and godlike strength shake his opponents in their boots. Galan’s feats include easily fighting off the Earth’s heroes like the Fantastic Four, Thor, and other powerful superheroes, but the problem starts when the Devourer of the Worlds starts becoming hungry. The source of his powers is the Power Cosmic, but even that vast power cannot sate Galan’s hunger – when he is hungry and needs planetary energy, Galan’s strength massively deteriorates.
Dr. Manhattan’s strength and stamina are infinite, so he gets another point in this epic battle.
Dr. Manhattan (2) : 0 Galactus
Combat is interesting since it mostly includes beings using their skills in hand-to-hand fighting. Once again, Dr. Manhattan’s skills in combat aren’t something he is very known for since he is a literal god that murders everyone from afar.
This is mostly a Galan section because he is a giant who uses his stature and strength to fend off the powerful attacks from his opponents. He slapped Thor into oblivion in one of their epic battles and consistently made his opponents pay even without his power blasts or energy projection.
Galactus would be more prolific against Dr. Manhattan in hand-to-hand combat, and for that, we have to give the point to the Devourer of the Worlds.
Dr. Manhattan 2 : (1) Galactus
Once again, this is where Galactus will most likely fail. Dr. Manhattan’s durability lies in his physiology; his body is made of nuclear particles. Jon can literally split and replicate himself without losing his powers and letting the vicious attacks phase through him, making him essentially invulnerable.
It also helps that he is essentially immortal, which was proved by his not aging physically and mentally – he is in control of his own age, meaning that his perception of himself is not changing, hence why he isn’t changing his body.
His source of power is unlimited, so his durability is also unlimited. Galactus doesn’t stand a chance in this section since his main power source doesn’t provide him the vast durability – the energy from various worlds scattered across the universe do.
Galactus stood against very powerful beings and even fought for days, but the moment he starts getting hungry, he becomes the true meaning of the word “hangry.” He is desperate and dies if one doesn’t provide him with planetary energy. This is proved by one of the Marvel Comics, released in 1999 when Silver Surfer starved Galan on purpose to weaken him so the other superheroes could blast the giant and kill him.
Dr. Manhattan takes this section by a landslide.
Dr. Manhattan (3) : 1 Galactus
Powers and abilities
Now, this gets even more interesting because the battle in this section is much closer in the greater scheme of things. Let’s start with Galactus.
As we already mentioned, Galan’s power source is the Power Cosmic – he is a cosmic entity with almost limitless, godlike powers. His feats are vast in Marvel Comics, and everything from energy projection and matter manipulation to telepathy, life creation, and godlike physiology is what makes Galactus one of the most powerful beings in Marvel Comics.
He survived the creation of the new cosmos, and he is believed to be the only one standing when the new cosmos is to be created. Galactus utilizes his powers quite well, especially his energy blasts and matter manipulation, which could harm even the strongest of opponents.
However, since we know that Dr. Manhattan is made of nuclear particles, or in this case, matter, can Galactus just devourer the powerful being and end the fight?
The answer is no.
Simply because Dr. Manhattan’s omniscience can showcase and dictate the vast number of possibilities, which includes this battle as well. Dr. Manhattan is so powerful that his perception alone could destroy whole populations, worlds, and even universes. If Galactus somehow devourers Manhattan, the blue man will most likely use his omnipotence and just phase himself out of Galactus’ body. If Dr. Manhattan disassembled Rorschach’s atomic structure, I imagine he could easily do that to Galactus as well because he is made of organic matter.
Dr. Manhattan stomps this fight and defeats Galactus.
Dr. Manhattan (4) : 1 Galactus
Dr. Manhattan vs. Galactus – who wins?
First of all, Galactus is a powerful being that had many feats in his tenure as the Marvel villain. The source of power is the Power Cosmic, which made him the cosmic entity we know today and, over the years, showcased what he can do to his opponents.
However, the blue guy that likes to walk naked everywhere stomps most of his opponents. All jokes aside, Dr. Manhattan wasn’t this overpowered when he was “only” in the Watchmen universe. Of course, Alan Moore made him powerful in his notable comic, but the moment Geoff Johns added Watchmen to the DC Universe, Dr. Manhattan became a god-like entity, only a tier lower than The Presence, the being that is above everything in DC Universe.
Nevertheless, the fact that Dr. Manhattan creates and destroys universes with so much ease is incredibly powerful, and unfortunately for the Devourer of the Worlds, he cannot defeat the juggernaut from DC Universe.
What are your thoughts on the matchup? Let us know in the comments below!