10 Comic Book Characters Based On Real People

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What does a 90s soap opera, an American Revolution general and Bob Kane’s cousin all have in common? They all were the inspirations behind some of our favorite superhero characters!

Batman’s alter ego Bruce Wayne has his origins in historical figures from American history. Bill Finger and Bob Kane collaborated to come up with the first name and last name separately. The Joker has his roots in German Expressionism, and Heath Ledger’s Joker has its roots in… Tom Waits?

But that’s not the weirdest super hero inspiration. Bob Kane actually had a crush on his cousin (by marriage) and used her likeness to draw the original Cat later known as Catwoman. He also says Jean Harlow inspired him but I’m thinking he just wanted to take attention away from the cousin thing.

A hockey movie inspired Wolverine, Marvel’s first Canadian super hero, and Nick Fury’s redesign was inspired by none other than Samuel L. Jackson himself! Stan Lee was the inspiration behind everyone’s favorite Daily Bugle editor-in-chief, but was too old to play him in the movies.

Professor X was inspired by Yul Brynner, a mysterious actor from the 50s and 60s who’s bald head rose him up to sex symbol status in America. Harley Quinn was inspired by an extremely bizarre soap opera dream sequence, and Tony Stark has his roots in Elon Musk, tech-savvy billionaires, assemble!

0:00 – Intro
0:17 – Bruce Wayne
1:07 – Joker
1:52 – Heath Ledger’s Joker
2:32 – Catwoman
3:57 – Wolverine
4:29 – Nick Fury
4:54 – J. Jonah Jameson
5:28 – Professor X
6:03 – Harley Quinn
7:03 – Tony Stark

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Video by: Dan DeStefano

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