Of the many superpowers that exist in comics, very few can change the outcome of an event quite like those who control earthly elements. Maybe I’m going out on a limb here, but sending an inferno, a blizzard, an electrical storm, or the like into the battle is like sending an army of rifles into a battle filled with knives. It just isn’t fair. In the world of comic books, there are dozens of superheroes that can control the elements. Between you and me, I’m certain that we could come up with a list of 20 superheroes in a matter of seconds.
The problem is, of those 20 only half of them actually have the power to really turn the tides of war. That is, of the many superheroes that can control the elements, only a handful or so really have what it takes to be classified as powerful. But who are they? Great question. Let’s take a look at our list of the 10 most powerful superheroes that have the ability to control the elements.
After being exposed to a radioactive chemical concoction, teenager Virgil Hawkins developed the ability to control electromagnetic energy. Once he learned to use his abilities, Virgil, now called Static, fine-tuned them so that he could: create force fields, fly, and electrocute objects and opponents, put electromagnetic shock behind his punches and kicks
Originally, Static was a character that fell under the Milestone Imprint of comics. Eventually, after Milestone merged with DC, Static was made a member of the Teen Titans. Even though he’s not as popular or as well-known as others on this list, Static is definitely deserving of being here.
Dust first appeared inside the pages of New X-Men #133 back in 2002. By simple math, this makes her one of the newest additions to the world of superheroes that control the elements.
Dust has the inherent ability to transform herself into a giant cloud of silicone-type particles. When she does this she can attack her enemies from inside and out. Basically, she can either brutalize her enemies with small particles of sand from the outside or enter the airways and attack them from the inside. Her power, however, doesn’t end there. When in her Dust form, she is practically immune to telepathic and physical attacks.
8. Wind Dancer
Sofia Elizabeth Mantega, formerly Wind Dancer, now Renascence was a mutant who was depowered as a result of Scarlet Witch and the House of M storyline. She first appeared in New Mutants Volume 2, #1 back in 2003 and was created by Nunzio DeFilippis, Christina Weir, and Keron Grant.
Before she was depowered, Wind Dancer was able to control the movement of air. By controlling the movement of air, she was able to create intense windstorms, fly, lift and move objects, and hear out-of-range conversations. Most impressively, she could also compress air small enough to disrupt a person’s balance through the equilibrium in their ears. Sadly, as of Renascence, she can do none of the above.
7. Cyclone (Maxine Hunkel)
Maxine Hunkel is the granddaughter of the original Red Tornado, “Ma” Hunkel. Growing up, Maxine idolized her grandmother and her grandmother’s Justice Society teammates. At the young age of six, Maxine was infected by T.O. Morrow (the creator of the android Red Tornado) with a type of nanobyte. This was important as it’s later believed that these nanobytes become the source of her power.
As Maxine reached adulthood, she began to experience strange happenings. Most notable of these was that she was able to knock over a garage with a sneeze and she woke up in the middle of a 500’ tornado. These instances, coupled with a few other instances led Maxine to believe that she could control the wind…and she was right.
Like Marvel’s Iceman, DC’s Ice has the ability to control and manipulate ice. This means that she can create and manipulate snow, cause blizzards and snowstorms, create and use ice as projectiles, and freeze and thaw the world around her.
Although a smaller player in the world of DC, Ice has appeared alongside some notable characters. For example, not only did she date Green Lantern, Guy Gardner, but she was also a surviving member of the team that helplessly watched as Doomsday killed Superman.
5. Red Tornado
Debuting more than 55 years ago, Red Tornado is one of DC’s most recognizable superheroes. In his first appearance, Red Tornado was not the android being that he’s known as today. In fact, the original Red Tornado was a middle-aged housewife who took it upon herself to rid the world of crime in places where the police had failed. Over time, this changed and Red Tornado was transformed into an android capable of controlling and manipulating the wind.
His wind manipulation allows him to create cyclone-type gusts. These gusts permit him to flight, at super speed, and wind storm creation. Because he is an android, he also possesses superhuman strength, intellect, and durability. Further to these, he also has access to computers thereby making him one of the smartest beings in DC.
4. Human Torch
For reasons as obvious as why it’s a good idea to use an umbrella during a thunderstorm, the Human Torch belongs here. Although this list could include the original Human Torch, it won’t.
Of the two Human Torchs, none are as well-known or important as Johnny Storm. Johnny is an invaluable member of the Fantastic Four and the younger brother of Sue Storm. As his name implies, he has the ability to control everything fire related. In the world of fire users, nobody can match Johnny’s power. Here’s why. Johnny’s control is so great that he can reach temperatures as hot as 1,000,000 degrees in a matter of seconds.
Just like the Human Torch, Iceman’s name tells you exactly what he can control.
Robert Drake is one of the founding members of the X-Men. Due to this, he has been around for longer than most superheroes that can control the elements. As a hero that can control ice, Iceman is one of the most powerful superheroes in existence. In fact, a debate has raged on for years about whether or not he’s an Omega Mutant.
Don’t let his outward appearance fool you. Iceman’s powers aren’t limited to the control of ambient air temperature. No, not even a little bit. Iceman can, if he wanted to, cause the fluids inside his enemy’s body to freeze thereby killing them from the inside.
Although I could’ve easily put Aquaman on this list, I chose Mera. Mera is the Queen of Atlantis and thereby Queen of the Seven Seas. She was meant to be the wife of Nerus and hails from Xebel. As someone from Xebel she can do practically anything associated with water. This means that she can move it, bend it, heat it, throw it, grow it, turn it solid, and cause it to rise from the ocean and fall from the sky.
Above those, she also possesses superhuman strength, speed, and durability and is extremely long-lived. Over the years an argument has arisen that states Mera, not Aquaman is the most powerful being in Atlantis.
Possibly the most famous of all the mutants to come from Africa, Storm is also the most deserving of being on this list. As her name implies, Storm is able to affect every aspect of the weather. If she wanted it to snow in Australia, she could make it snow in Australia. If she wanted it to rain in the Sahara, she could make it rain in the Sahara. And if she wanted it to become unbearably hot in Antarctica, well, you get the picture.
Over the years, the potency of Storm’s power has changed. In her first appearances, she could merely control the weather. Over the years, however, Storm has become able to change the atmospheric pressure in any area…large or small. Due to all of the above, Storm is an invaluable member of the X-Men who has, on more than one occasion, led the team.