Being a superhero is a tough gig and sometimes you need some serious backup. Enter the much beloved sidekick, the trustworthy companion and stalwart aide. Not all sidekicks are made of the same stuff, so let’s look at five who really stand out from the pack and earn their place at the side of superheroes.
Wong is ever at the side of the Sorcerer Supreme, he offers him counsel as well as a deep knowledge of the mystic arts. While he has no powers of his own, he is a skilled martial artist and often uses his intelligence to outhink his more powerful enemies. Wong has evolved from Strange’s servant in the original comics to his bodyguard and best friend with kick ass skills of his own. He’s often seen side by side with the magical doctor on his many dangerous adventures.
Kid Flash is a moniker that has been held by a few characters but we’re going to talk specifically about Wally West. Wally is the nephew of Barry Allen (aka The Flash) and has speed powers almost identical to his uncle. Not only did he fight crime alongside Barry but he went on to be a founding member of the legendary Teen Titans. Wally eventually achieved the highest honor a sidekick can by graduating to the mantle of The Flash after Barry sacrificed himself during Crisis On Infinite Earths.
Unlike a lot of sidekicks, Rick Jones was there from the start. In fact, Rick is kind of the reason Bruce Banner became The Hulk. Rick had wandered onto the test site of a Gamma Bomb causing Banner to run out on the test site himself. He saved Jones but was transformed into the green rage monster. Rick’s guilt over this causes him to stay at Banner’s side. Rick has journeyed around the Marvel Universe having been sidekick to a number of characters before ultimately reuniting with his old pal Bruce Banner in the current run of comics.
Whoever decided that a patriotic superhero who was actively fighting in the front lines of World War II should have a teenage boy next to him should probably have been jailed. However, this completely insane premise gave us one of comics most important and lasting friendships. While Bucky was initially the classic kid sidekick he became a much darker presence when writer Ed Brubaker re-envisioned him as a brainwashed assassin known as the Winter Soldier. This rebooting of his character has made him one of the most compelling and complex figures in the Marvel universes of both the comics and movies.
Dick Grayson is the ultimate sidekick, the one all others are modeled on. From his iconic debut declaring him the sensational character find of 1940. The light to Batman’s dark, the introduction of the Boy Wonder changed Batman (and all of comics) forever. He’s the character every kid wants to be. Like so many of his contemporaries he has evolved over the years, first forming his own superhero identity of Nightwing and then putting on the iconic cape and cowl when Batman is thought dead after the events of Final Crisis. Robin stands supreme in the crowd of superhero sidekicks.