32. Loki - 504 points (4 first place votes)
Created by Stan Lee, Larry Lieber and Jack Kirby (well, the comic book version of Loki, at least. I think you get the picture), Loki has been involved in Thor comics since practically the first appearance of Thor! It is a great twist on the standard idea of brains versus brawn (similar to Superman and Lex Luthor), where the muscle bound Thor has to always find a way to stop the various schemes of his trickster half-brother.
Loki’s schemes often go awry, including when he got a bunch of heroes to fight the Hulk, only to see them join together as a group of heroes known as the Avengers.
Fairly recently, Loki joined forces with Norman Osborn, Doctor Doom and the Hood as part of an evil cabal designed to rule the world. As part of Loki’s plans, he helped convince Norman Osborn to invade Asgard. Asgard was destroyed in the battle and Loki sacrificed himself to help his fellow Asgardians (which, in and of itself, was a plot, as he knew he would be reborn).
He then returned in the form a young boy. Written by Kieron Gillen, this Loki was an awesome character. There is this great Christmas issue where he has a little of Helhounds he has to find homes or else he will be forced to kill them (as you can't have Helhounds running around)....
So sweet. Sadly, that era did not end well for Loki, but then he became an older version and still had some great adventures under the pen of Al Ewing. I don't know what the future holds for Loki post-Secret Wars.
31. Iron Fist - 517 points (3 first place votes)
Created by Roy Thomas and Gil Kane, Danny Rand was on a trip to the mystical city of K'un L'un as a boy when his parents were murdered. The orphan was taken in by YÃ¼-Ti, the ruler of K'un L'un, who trained Danny in the martial artists.
Eventually, Danny became the best of the best, and attempted to become the holder of "the Iron Fist." He succeeded, and now possesses the fist, which allows him to focus his chi and enhance his natural abilities to far greater than a normal human, and since Danny is one of the world's greatest martial artists withOUT said advantage, you can only imagine how helpful that is.
Danny eventually paired up with the hero Power Man, Luke Cage, as the two formed a hero partnership and a great friendship that lasts to this day, even though Danny was missing for a time, and Luke accused of murdering him!
Ed Brubaker and Matt Fraction, along with artist David Aja, gave Iron Fist an awesome ongoing series called the Immortal Iron Fist, where we learn that K'un L'un is not the ONLY magical city out there!
Iron Fist later joined the Avengers and will be re-teaming with Luke in a new Power Man and Iron Fist ongoing series soon.