The most famous fictional Heroes of all time

Watching Spectre tonight, I reflected on the many years of enjoyment I’ve had from James Bond, and the above topic came to mind.

I tried to come up with a top 5 but could not quite get there. But all these have last through generations, many incarnations, and various media:

Sherlock Holmes
James Bond

Anyone have any their equal to add to the list?

Batman, clearly.

Santa Claus. KK trumps them all.

…and Batman is a gimme.

So all time? Now I’ll stick with western culture. I’m quite certain if you dug around India or China you could find ones that surpassed any here, in terms of numbers.

Odysseus or Achilles has to be on there.
King Arthur, Lancelot, or Merlin

I am partial to Sherlock Holmes and Superman on that list though.

Santa Claus, man that is a fantastic answer.

Gilgamesh is the oldest hero that I know of.

Doctor Who
Robin Hood

I just did not rank Batman that high. Personal taste I guess.

Did give a passing thought to Hercules…

King Arthur, I like.

Santa Claus is a hero?

When is the last time Gilgamesh was featured in a book, movie, comic, or TV show?

Somewhere in the next tier: Captain Kirk.

Yeah, I’m not sure I’m buying Tarzan on a 21st century list. Elsa would outpoll him 1000 to 1. Don’t get me wrong, he had a good run, but like the Lone Ranger I’m not sure he really made it into the new millennium. He’s getting a movie next year, though, so I guess we’ll find out.

Hercules and Robin Hood would be my all-time top 2. Holmes comes close, but we really need another century or two to make sure he’s not just a flash in the pan. Both of those guys have been around for hundreds of years (millennia in the case of Herc.)

Santa Claus is a hero?

Surely, sir, you’re not suggesting Santa Claus is a villain?

Elsa the lioness? Huh?

Yeah, 25 years ago Tarzan’s a shoein but I think he still belongs.

Re Santa, heroes have adventures. And no one rebut this with a silly movie…

I actually like the Lone Ranger mention.

Heh, like you I remember Elsa the lioness! But I am old.

If you’re born in this century, you know about this Elsa.

I’ll chime in with Indiana Jones. :)

You ranked…Superman over…Batman…?

Don’t want to start a war or anything, but, along with Gilgamesh, Hercules, Robin Hood these aren’t strictly fictional characters. There are unresolved questions on their historical veracity

I have socks from before this century.

Never heard of her.

By a lot.

Gave him some thought too.

Luke Skywalker, anyone?

Wong Fei Hung. Not technically fictional, but 99% of the many dozens of films about him are.
The Monkey King from Journey to the West

From the Iliad I prefer Diomedes. Achilles is a jerk and Odysseus is a treacherous bastard. The Ajaxes are mere thugs. Menelaus is a weakling and Agamemnon is a fool. Diomedes gets some points off for accompanying Odysseus on a rather dishonorable mission, but in general I think he is the noblest of the Greeks, and also the only one to score a hit on a god without divine guidance (though he was Athena’s favorite and received a lot of assistance from her throughout). A couple more points off for striking Aphrodite, though she really had no business being on the battlefield.

Well on a list of most famous, he wouldn’t even hit the top 10 in that particular story. Also, yes, what were considered ‘heroes’ and desirable traits of such, for ancient Greeks is fairly opposed to modern society.

Spider-Man - with great power comes great responsibility

Au contraire, he was definitely in the top 3 Greeks and top 5 overall. Only Achilles was a better warrior, and Diomedes defeated Hector more than once. I believe he got the longest single passage in the Iliad, too. Moreover Diomedes was one of the epigoni, a king in his own right, and he was the star of other epics now lost. Athena’s tastes epitomized heroic virtue, and since he was her favorite I think it likely he was considered the most heroic of the Greeks by Homer’s audience too.