Dogs have always made excellent protectors of families and children. Imagine if they had powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal mutts? Think of the blind people they could help across the street, the airport drug smugglers they could singlehandedly stop, the … kittens they could rescue from trees? Well, maybe not.
Dogs that are sweet natured, well trained and well cared for are very much like superheroes. They assist in rescues, they help people with disabilities, and they help find missing people. It’s no wonder that we’ve seen them interpreted as superheroes in all kinds of TV shows, films, cartoons and comics. Let’s take a look at some of the more famous ones:
DC Comics created a dog companion for Superboy back in 1955. When Superman’s father Jor-El was testing rockets to send his son Kal-El, Krypto was one of his first test subjects. His rocket eventually made its way to Smallville, Kansas, where he soon became the best friend of one teenaged Clark Kent, aka Superboy.
Krypto possesses all of Superman’s mighty powers, and the earth’s yellow sun and lower gravity gives him human level intellect, which is a good thing for a dog with the power to tear the fender off of a car.
1955 was an important year for superhero dogs. Batman and Robin also gained a four-legged canine crime-fighting companion, Ace the Bat Hound. Ace’s original owner was kidnapped by criminals, so he helped Batman apprehend them, complete with an identity disguising costume. The owner decided only Bruce Wayne could give his beloved pet the home he deserved.
Ace is incredibly smart and an experienced tracker. He had a radio collar that instructed him when to put on a disguise and help Batman and Robin.
Lockjaw, Marvel Comics
Marvel Comics was not to be outdone by DC’s super-pooches. Lockjaw is essentially a giant bulldog, a companion of the genetically mutated Inhumans who live on the moon. He has encountered and shared adventures with the Fantastic Four, among others, and has even once been a member of the superhero group The Pet Avengers.
Lockjaw has a superhumanly strong jaw, and he can teleport himself and others anywhere on earth and to the moon.
Max the Bionic Dog, The Bionic Woman
Much like DC Comics, once The Six-Million Dollar Man was established as a television superhero icon, many characters began spinning off from him: The Bionic Woman, The Bionic Boy, and of course Max, the Bionic Dog. In a very moving fan-favorite, two-part episode of The Bionic Woman, we meet Max, who was a test subject for bionics before Steve Austin or Jaime Summers. When he exhibits an aggressive reaction, he is scheduled to be euthanized. Jaime isn’t having that and soon she and Max go on the road to escape the government she once worked for.
Max possesses four bionic legs and a bionic jaw. He can run at speeds up to 90 miles an hour.
Ms. Lion, Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends
Ms. Lion is the cute, spunky pet of Aunt May and Peter Parker in the 1980’s Spider-Man cartoon adaptation Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends. She guards the secrets of the Spider Friends (Spider-Man, Firestar and Iceman) fiercely. She was also singlehandedly responsible for the defeat of the dreaded super-villain The Chameleon in the episode “Seven Little Superheroes”, which earned her the title of the “Eighth Little Superhero.”
Zane Schwarzlose is an SEO at Fahrenheit Marketing, an Austin web design firm. Zane loves comic books.
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Cover: photo by: istolethetv