THE GREATEST COMIC BOOK QUOTES EVER! The 20 Greatest Lines Ever Said By Comic Book Characters

May 20 2009, Published 1:00 p.m. ET

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Ever since the first issue of Action Comics in 1938, when one of Superman's nemeses pulled a gun and was warned, "Put that toy away!", comic book characters have been dispensing all kinds of wisdom, warnings, and practical advice.

These days, when all the attention is on big-budget movies like Wolverine and The Dark Knight, it's fun to go back to the source -- comic books -- to check out some fantastic quotes that are well-known...and some that are not. Our resident comic book expert Jeff Rovin, author of The Encyclopedia of Superheroes, provides a list of what he consider the 20 greatest lines ever uttered by comic book characters. Some of these characters are well known, and some you've probably never heard of, unless you're as big a fanatic as our expert.

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  1. "We're forming a union, jerk hole -- my foot and your face!" -- Skateman
  2. "If a man chooses to do becomes my sacred duty to bash him to a pulp!" -- Crime Crusher
  3. "With great power comes great responsibility!" -- The Narrator in The Amazing Spider-Man. (That's right folks it was the narrator who said it first, not Peter Parker or his Uncle Ben.)
  4. "Paradise unearned is but a land of shadows!"  -- The Silver Surfer
  5. "It's clobberin' time!" -- The Thing of The Fantastic Four
  6. "We shall call you Captain America, son! Because, like you -- America shall gain the strength and the will to safeguard our shores!" -- Professor Reinstein in Captain America
  7. "In brightest day, in blackest night, no evil shall escape my sight. Let those who worship evil's might, beware my power -- Green Lantern's light!"  -- Green Lantern
  8. "Criminals are a superstitious, cowardly lot, so my disguise must be able to strike terror into their hearts. I must be a creature of the night, black, terrible... a... a... a bat!" -- Batman
  9. "I'd rather not rule the earth. I just want to marry the girl next door and live in the suburbs." -- Dynamo
  10. "Life and death... they are only like changing subway trains to me as I ride through eternal life."  -- Immortal Man
  11. "Yes, Mr. Death... I'll play you a game! But not chess! My game is wiffleball!" -- The Flaming Carrot
  12. "Hit the fire, liar!"  -- The Flag
  13. "'Discussion' is for bio-organisms." -- Deathlok
  14. "Of all the stupid -- ! When my body turned invisible, the gown didn't!" -- Invisible Girl
  15. "Old superheroes don't just fade away. They grow old, useless -- and very, very bitter!"  -- The Blue Diamond
  16. "If only those bricks could talk...the things they'd say would help build better prisons in the future." -- The Spirit
  17. "I should break your face for that, but that would not teach you of love." -- Slaughterman
  18. "I'd join you, but I think I'm close to locating a gluino, which would completely validate supersymmetrical theory if we could include it in the bestiary." -- Dr. Manhattan (Watchmen)
  19. "Grown-ups... are a strange breed! Their brains weigh close to three pounds, and that's not three pounds of cheery delight!" -- The Tick
  20. "I cannot preach hate and warfare when I am a disciple of peace and love!"  -- Wonder Woman
  21. (Image: DC Direct)



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