DC Comics is one of the world's oldest comic book publishers due to its predecessor firm, National Comics Publications, which was founded in 1934. This means that Detective Comics is technically much older than Marvel.
Detective Comics' coterie of superheroes includes classic powerhouses like Superman, Batman, Flash, Wonder Woman and others. With the varying extent of abilities and origin of superpowers, these superheroes' strengths and weaknesses have interested millions of fans globally.
Thus, this list focuses on the most powerful superheroes in the DC universe.
Ten superheroes from DC Comics who are the most powerful in their universe
While the list contains some of the most renowned superheroes in DC Comics, it will exclude characters like The Presence, who have made few appearances and did not showcase much heroism.
Disclaimer: The following list is based on the author's subjective opinions.
One of the most recognizable superheroes in pop culture, the Flash is perhaps one of the fastest beings in DC Comics. While Barry Allen is the most well-known iteration of the character in the comics, Wally West is faster than the former as the scarlet speedster.
In 2009's The Flash: The Human Race comic series, West's version of the Flash reached something called 'Trans-Time Velocity,' which exceeded any speed theoretically possible in science.
As a speedster, he can easily travel well beyond the speed of light, which gives him the ability to time travel. This makes the character one of the most potent DC superheroes who can manipulate time to his advantage if need be.
Shazam's (aka Billy Batson) powers can make the character go toe-to-toe with several of the strongest superheroes in the DC Comics' universe. His powers include superhuman strength, extremely enhanced endurance and durability, healing factor, superhuman speed, and numerous more.
While the character is comparable to Wonder Woman, who might best him in a duel, Shazam's raw power beats that of Diana. This is why Shazam took this position in this list over Wonder Woman.
3) Big Barda
Big Barda is one of the most powerful New Gods who worked as an Apokoliptian soldier under DC supervillain Darkseid. After she met and fell in love with Mister Miracle, the character changed her moral affiliation to good.
Barda has abilities ranging from immortality to God-like durability, speed and strength. She is also highly trained in combat and can shoot mighty energy blasts.
Orion is the second son of Darkseid and a member of the New Genesis. He did not follow in Darkseid's footsteps in DC Comics and instead joined the Justice League.
His powers include extreme forms of super strength, stamina, and immortality. In the Superman (Volume 3) #20 DC Comic issue, the character fought with Superman and made him bleed.
The character has been portrayed as being on par with Darkseid in terms of powers. In the Death of the New Gods storyline, Orion rips Darkseid's heart out and kills him.
5) Doctor Fate
The DC Comics character is associated with the Justice Society of America and has an extremely powerful set of magical abilities. His superpowers include dimensional travel, illusions, invisibility, healing, hypnosis, force fields, energy blasts, telekinesis, and many more.
Doctor Fate, aka Kent Nelson's magical powers and prowess, makes him even more powerful than Marvel's Doctor Strange.
6) Captain Atom
Nathaniel Adam, aka Captain Atom, is a DC Comics superhero who was part of a secret government project that gave him extremely powerful abilities. The character is protected by an alien metal called Dilustel, which fused with him. This gives the character multiple powers including Quantum Field manipulation.
Captain Atom's abilities include short-term time travel, flight, invulnerability, magic negation, extremely enhanced strength, speed, and more. He is also essentially immortal.
7) Doctor Manhattan
Jonathan "Jon" Osterman, aka Doctor Manhattan, is from DC Comics' Watchmen universe, which Alan Moore created. The character is one of the most overpowered beings to exist in comics.
The quantum being is incredibly meta and has Nigh-Omnipotence, which means he perceives both past, present, and future simultaneously. With almost infinite God-like abilities, Doctor Manhattan can easily alter the realities of the universe as well as destroy them.
He also has powers like energy manipulation, time travel, teleportation, highly heightened senses and intelligence, and countless other abilities.
8) Superman Prime
The character is basically the most meta version of Superman to exist in the DC Comics universe. He resided in Earth's yellow Sun for fifteen thousand years and absorbed solar energy as per the comics.
This makes this version of Supes to have immeasurable power even compared to the regular version of the character.
9) Elaine Belloc
Belloc is Michael Demiurgos' daughter and is next to inherit heaven after the Presence. Her powers are mainly similar to that of Aztar. However, the power level between the two has been a subject of debate amongst fans for years. While some feel that Belloc can beat Aztar, others have discredited the notion.
10) The Spectre
Aztar, aka The Spectre, is the Spirit of Vengeance and an associate who works under the Presence (God's equivalent and the most powerful being in DC Comics). The Spectre's powers are said to be only surpassed by that of the Presence.
The character has unquantifiable abilities like omnipotence and omnipresence, telekinesis, telepathy, immortality, invulnerability, energy manipulation and energy blasts (Eldritch Blast). He can also metamorphose, alter reality and possess other characters' bodies.
It is challenging to measure power levels with these God-like characters. Thus the ranking of these characters can never be fixed unless the DC Comics' writers pit them against each other.