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Better Than “Whelmed:” Ranking The Most Powerful Young Justice Members

by  in Lists, TV News Comment
Better Than “Whelmed:” Ranking The Most Powerful Young Justice Members

SPOILER WARNING: The following list contains major spoilers for seasons 1 and 2 of Young Justice.

When it comes to superhero groups like the Justice League (or any kind of group where skilled fighters join together in general), there’s always that same underlying question: who’s the strongest? The “Young Justice” team is no different. About as soon as when DC Entertainment decided to build a series around the establishment of a superhero team comprising the young sidekicks of famous heroes like Batman, The Flash, Aquaman and Wonder Woman, fans couldn’t help but argue over which of them was strongest. Now that season 3 is officially in production, we’re here to join in on the debate.

RELATED: Young Justice: 15 Things We Want From Season 3

There are many determining factors in judging who the strongest is. Speed, strength, special abilities and intelligence are just several that are taken into account on this list. While each of these heroes have their own share of weaknesses, we’re confident that you “won’t be feeling the ‘aster” when you see who we’ve determined are the strongest members of the team.

15. Artemis

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Originally portrayed as Green Arrow’s niece and the replacement for Roy Harper once he decided to fly solo, Artemis is a skilled archer on par with both her mentor and predecessor. While she is one of the few members of the team without any superpowers to speak of, she has more than proven her loyalty and value to the team. The incident with Red Tornado’s siblings in “Homefront” proved she’s asset to the team, especially as she makes the final shot that saves the lives of the entire team.

Like her mentor, Artemis is incredibly skilled with a bow and arrow, able to hit shots from a variety of angles under intense pressure. In addition, she is skilled in hand-to-hand combat with multiple weapons, including sais and daggers. She is also skilled in reconnaissance, which allowed her to maintain deep cover as ‘Tigress’ within The Light for most of Season Two. Granted, the fact that she doesn’t have superpowers like most of the group certainly holds her back, but as she gains more experience and gets back into the superhero groove, her ability to deal with super-powered foes will continue to increase over time.

14. Red Arrow/Arsenal

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The first protege of Green Arrow, Roy Harper is a unique case, as there are two of him, with Red Arrow being his cloned version and Arsenal being the original biological version. As they’re technically the same person, as well as having similar skills and character flaws, we decided both will occupy the same place on our list.

Both Red Arrow and Arsenal are archers, equipped with a powerful bows, trick arrows and additional assorted weapons for a variety of situations. Arsenal even possesses a cybernetic arm that he gained from Lex Luthor that can fire energy blasts. Add skilled hand to hand combat to the mix and both crimson archers are versatile opponents able to adapt to a wide array of situations.

Despite their abilities with weapons, both have attitudes that can be difficult to reign in, as they are very hot-headed and reckless, traits that can often make it difficult to work alongside their teammates. Despite the wide array of weaponry at their disposal, a lack of superpowers puts them at a disadvantage compared to other members. While more hot-headed than Artemis, the skill of both Roys and their experience puts them a notch above her in our eyes.

13. Robin/Nightwing

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The protege of the Dark Knight, Robin (later taking the mantle of Nightwing) was among the youngest members of “Young Justice” at the start of the series, but it was immediately apparent that he was one of the most skilled.

Having been trained by Batman since he was nine, Robin exhibits all of the typical traits that a member of the Bat Family should. Skilled in a number of areas such as stealth, computer hacking, hand-to-hand combat and tactical strategy, the only reason he didn’t lead the team from the start was due to his age. The most skilled of the non-super-powered members of the team, the son of the former Flying Graysons more than made his mark on the team.

Taking up the mantle of Nightwing in Season Two, his leadership capabilities are shown to have vastly improved, as has his combat ability. He is skilled enough to be offered a spot in the Justice League but has continually declined, opting to instead lead and mentor the younger heroes on a full-time basis. While he doesn’t have the superpowers of his teammates, Nightwing provides the example that non-super-powered heroes should strive towards.

12. Bumblebee

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One of the many members to have been added during the time skip between Season One and Two, Bumblebee is a unique blend of both scientific ingenuity and combat skills, particularly when it comes to her abilities.

Thanks to the powers of her armored suit, she is able to shrink to the size of a bee, which makes her useful for scouting missions and quick escapes. On top of shrinking, her gloves also contain “stingers,” which allow her to fire small energy blasts that are very effective in messing up her opponents’ day. Her suit also provides her the ability of flight and a holographic computer. She is also skilled in the field of science, as she often works alongside The Atom Ray Palmer.

Unfortunately, as is often the case with Bumblebee, shrinking has its risks. Should she be knocked out while in her small bee form, she’ll remain as such until she regains consciousness and willingly becomes large again. Because of this risk, she is often used as more of a support member than a frontline fighter, and it’s why we aren’t willing to rank her higher on this list.

11. Rocket

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Making her debut near the end of Season One in “Usual Suspects” when her mentor, Icon, was inducted into the Justice League, Rocket was one of the first extended members of the team.

Originally very inexperienced upon her initiation, Rocket showcased the ability to draw power from kinetic energy thanks to the alien technology she possesses that allows her to perform feats such as flight and super-strength. In addition, she can also project force fields and impenetrable barriers that are immune to physical attacks by absorbing any and all energy that gets used against them. This became an invaluable asset when the team had to confront and capture a Reach-controlled Blue Beetle near the end of Season Two.

Rocket’s abilities see a tremendous amount of growth from her introduction in Season One to the start of Season Two, as she grew powerful enough to become a full-fledged Justice League member during the time skip. While Rocket didn’t have the same screen time compared to other members, her abilities to neutralize physical threats and attacks alone make her one of the strongest female fighters “Young Justice” has to offer.

10. Beast Boy

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Out of all team members, Beast Boy is the only member whose abilities were not acquired through having a meta-gene, undergoing rigorous training, or getting his hands on some form of alien technology.

Thanks to a timely blood transfusion by Miss Martian, Beast Boy (originally Garfield Logan) gained the ability to morph into any animal. Coupled with green skin as a side effect of the transfusion, Beast Boy finds a place among the young group of superheroes, with his abilities serving a variety of functions. Whether it’s the brute strength of a gorilla, the speed of a cheetah, or the gills of a fish, he can mimic any and every animal.

Despite his access to the wide array of species within the animal kingdom, Beast Boy’s youth and immaturity show through while in training and on missions. It certainly holds back the orphaned youngster, as do experiencing things that trigger flashbacks to the day of his mother’s death. With continued experience and some growing up, however, he could easily emerge as one of the team’s powerhouses.

9.  Kid Flash

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Another team founder and protégé to The Flash, Wally West, better known as Kid Flash, is the jokester and most lighthearted of the team.

Like his mentor, Kid Flash draws his power from the Speed Force, granting him super-speed. He can neither run as fast as Barry Allen nor draw upon as much of the Speed Force, but he is undoubtedly the team’s fastest member when it comes to speed (at least, until a certain other speedster comes in from the future). He is also among the most fearless of “Young Justice,” as he didn’t hesitate to join his fellow speedsters in closing the breach, making the ultimate sacrifice to save the world.

As previously stated, he still doesn’t exactly have full mastery of his powers, as he often slips and falls should he make a misstep. He also can’t phase himself through solid objects like some of the other experienced speedsters, which means being unable to capture him isn’t always a problem. His slower speed is even what leads to his apparent death in the Season Two finale. Despite these weaknesses, Kid Flash remains a team founder whose impact can’t be understated.

8. Impulse

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The newest speedster on the team, Impulse is the future grandson of the current Flash in Barry Allen, having traveled back in time to prevent the apocalyptic events brought about by The Reach. Upon arriving in the past, he is unable to return to the future, and becomes a member of the team, providing them with a new speedster after the retirement of Kid Flash.

Unlike Wally West, Impulse is more in tune with the Speed Force, easily able to keep pace with his grandfather. In fact, he’s shown to be faster than both Wally West and Jay Garrick. Like most speedsters, he is often upbeat and talkative, though his speed often blends with his speech, as he often talks a mile a minute. Always looking to ‘Crash the Mode,’ Impulse has a strong sense of justice and is always looking to do what’s right.

Like Kid Flash, Impulse often rushes in first and asks questions later. He is also very confident in his speed, which could lead to underestimating certain situations and his opponents. Despite this overconfidence, his mastery of the Speed Force is amazing for his age, which makes him a perfect fit for the young group of heroes.

7. Lagoon Boy (La’gann)

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Joining the team during the time skip between Seasons One and Two, Lagoon Boy originally becomes known as just Miss Martian’s rebound boyfriend. The Atlantean, and other protege of Aquaman, became known for being more than just an aquatic boyfriend with a cocky attitude, however.

While clearly not human given his scales, fins, and shark teeth, La’gann’s true value lies in missions that involve large bodies of water. It is here that his powers can be used to their fullest. He has enhanced strength and speed underwater and can also swell his body like a puffer fish, which further increases his strength to being the team’s equivalent of the incredible Hulk. He can also perform Atlantean sorcery and is able to form weapons out of water.

Given that he is one of the few members who can survive and fight at high capacity in deep-sea water missions, La’gann’s value is pretty high to the team. Like many Atlanteans, he is very vulnerable to high temperatures, and his effectiveness on land is not as high. His cocky attitude also held him back to a degree, but there’s no discounting that, when it comes to overall ability and fighting strength, he is among the best the team has to offer.

6.  Aqualad

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One of the founding members of the team, the Atlantean student of Aquaman has proven himself as capable on land as in water. Aqualad is able to manipulate water and shape it into various constructs, with his preferred method being the use of his water-bearers, sword hilts that he keeps on his back to hold onto water that he shapes into blades. Very formal and respectful, he is among the team’s more mature members, which is likely attributed to his upbringing under the King of Atlantis. It is also what led to his being named leader in Season One and being given the undercover mission within Black Manta’s operation. As team leader, he has proven himself to be level-headed in dire situations and shown an ability to perform under high-pressure situations.

Being Atlantean, he is weak to high temperatures, particularly fire, but his skills, intelligence and powers have made him one of the team’s most powerful members from the beginning. Whether in water or on land, there is no doubting Aqualad’s status as one of the best fighters on the show.

5. Zatanna

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One of the first extended members of the team to join, Zatanna Zatara is one of the team’s most gifted members and the most skilled at what she does best: using magic by pronouncing phrases backwards.

As the daughter of the famous magician Giovanni Zatara, Zatanna is a skilled magic user able to accomplish all sorts of amazing feats from creating magical energy barriers to conjuring up massive snowstorms. Given that the amount of magic she can cast depends on her physical stamina and ability to maintain her concentration, one can assume she is in peak physical and mental condition to cast such massive spells and not instantly become fatigued. By Season Two, Zatanna has grown powerful enough to become a member of the Justice League.

Given the fact that there really aren’t any other magic users within the team, Zatanna is a very invaluable asset, as she was instrumental in helping regain control of Blue Beetle. As mentioned earlier, her spells aren’t nonverbal, however, gagging her renders her unable to cast them. While she also hasn’t shown a penchant for physical combat, her use and knowledge of magic is critical on a team otherwise devoid of spell-casters.

4. Wonder Girl

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The protege of Wonder Woman herself, Wonder Girl has the potential to become one of the team’s most iconic members as she gains more power and experience. She’s capable of flying, has super-strength and possesses invulnerable bracelets just like the Princess of Themyscera does, along with her own lasso of truth. She is also a skilled hand-to-hand combatant, able to overcome an enemy like Devastation by herself despite her relative inexperience.

Like her mentor, Wonder Girl is as strong in character as she is physically, and is always looking to challenge herself, especially in combat. Unlike other members, Wonder Girl isn’t very suited for stealth missions, but, in her limited on-screen time, has shown herself as one of the team’s strongest front-line fighters against massively strong super-powered foes. While she needs to continue honing her focus more on than the fight, her talent for combat and incredible power set makes her as one of the team’s strongest powerhouses.

3. Blue Beetle

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Another member to join during the time skip between Seasons One and Two, Blue Beetle became one of the major figures in Season Two, and his various abilities explained why.

Thanks to the blue scarab beetle on his back, Jaime Reyes is able to don the Blue Beetle armor and use it to perform a wide array of abilities. Not only does it wearing the armor prevent him from arm, but also it grants him flight and super-strength, on top of being able to fire various types of energy blasts, transform into various items like blades, lockpicks and drills, and even translate a variety of human and alien languages. Fused to his spine, the scarab and Jaime share a symbiotic relationship, mentally communicating with one another for various purposes and working in conjunction as a single unit.

While the suit can accomplish nearly anything and fight against anyone, it is not invincible, as was seen when it was trapped by a combination barrier from Rocket and Zatanna. Reyes and the scarab have a rather rocky relationship, which makes performing rough at times. However, when the Blue Beetle armor is operating at its fullest, few can truly stand against it.

2. Superboy

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The half-human clone of the Man of Steel, Superboy has had his share of growing pains being in the image of the world’s most heroic icon.

Being half-human, Superboy doesn’t possess the flight or laser vision of the original. However, he still retains his Kryptonian strength and durability, able to both dish out and withstand a great deal of punishment. While he can’t fly, his strength is such that he can leap great distances in a single bound, which more than makes up for his lack of flight. He also possesses super hearing and super vision, which allows him to see infrared images of people within buildings. Thanks to some hardcore combat training from Black Canary, he has also grown into a more than capable hand-to-hand combatant.

Canary also helped him deal with abandonment and anger issues, so by the time Season Two comes along, he has matured into a more collected team member who can keep a cooler head during dire situations. He has even developed a better relationship with Superman. This power set, their strength levels and his emotional development have only contributed to his growth as one of the team’s most dominating threats.

1. Miss Martian

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While she might not be the most skilled hand-to-hand combatant or the strongest in terms of physical strength compared to her teammates, Miss Martian’s abilities make her the strongest, and thus the most dangerous, to face on the team.

Unlike Martian Manhunter, she’s a White Martian who has the ability to shape-shift into any form she desires, whether it be animals or people. She can camouflage in order to blend in with her surroundings, become invisible, and has super-strength and flight. Her most valuable (and dangerous) ability is telepathy, which acts as the main communication for the team. When at its most lethal, she has the ability to break anyone’s mind, placing them in a comatose state. Her demonstration of this on Aqualad was such that only she was capable of repairing his mind.

Being a Martian, she is very vulnerable to fire and extreme temperatures like Atlanteans and doesn’t have quite the same level of durability as Superboy. However, her wide array of abilities outpaces any on the team, which makes her the most dangerous one to face, especially with her telepathic abilities.

Did you agree with our list? Who do you think are the strongest members of the team on “Young Justice?” Let us know in the comments!

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