On this week’s episode of Comic Book Men, a man proposes to his girlfriend with The Amazing Spider-Man Annual #21, which just happens to be the issue where Peter Parker marries Mary Jane. In honor of their Marvel-inspired matrimony, here are our picks for the ten most iconic couples in comic book history:
1. Clark Kent and Lois Lane
For many, the relationship between Lois and Clark is the comic book romance. They are perhaps the longest-lasting comic book couple, with Lois introduced alongside Superman in Action Comics #1. Though certain stories and timelines find Superman involved with Wonder Woman, history will always find Lois and Clark back in each other’s arms.
2. Dick Grayson and Barbara Gordon
The origins of the Nightwing and Batgirl romance were first met with a lukewarm reception in the DC Comics universe, but sparks really began to fly in the late ’90s in Batman: The Animated Series and later in various Batfamily stories. Their eternal “will they or won’t they” flirtation peaked in Infinite Crisis with what has become one of the most memorable proposals in comic history.
3. Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy
Peter Parker and Mary Jane are the more famous couple, but no one — save for Uncle Ben — has had more of a profound influence on the webslinger than Peter’s first love, Gwen Stacy. Gwen was famously thrown off a bridge by the Green Goblin and Spider-Man was unable to save her. Her death sent waves through the whole Marvel universe, and continues to impact characters today.
4. The Joker and Harley Quinn
No couple in comic book history is as dysfunctional and psychotic as Harley Quinn and the Joker. Created by Paul Dini for Batman: The Animated Series, Harley Quinn was introduced as the Joker’s sidekick and has skyrocketed to fame with fans since then. The fiery, often hateful union between them has captivated readers for years.
5. Scott Summers and Jean Grey
The relationship between Scott Summers and Jean Grey is one of the mainstays of the X-Men storyline, dating back to the original run of The X-Men in 1963. Their love is a bright spot in the history of the mutants; even through marriage, divorce, death, resurrection, time travel and more, Scott and Jean always care deeply for one another.
6. Batman and Catwoman
Throughout their history, Batman and Catwoman have always danced around a possible union. Though their goals aren’t always in line with each other’s, there is no denying the chemistry they share. Their complicated relationship has become a staple of the Batman universe, reappearing in nearly every timeline.
7. Hawkman and Hawkgirl
Hawkman and Hawkgirl are the ultimate symbol of undying love. After the couple is cursed in Ancient Egypt with an alien dagger, they are destined to find and fall in love with each other in every reincarnation of their souls.
8. Reed Richards and Sue Storm
One of Marvel’s most famous couples, Reed Richards and Sue Storm represent the Silver Age of comic book romance: wholesome and devoted. Though their relationship has had its fair share of peaks and valleys, their trust and love for each other has never been broken — even when on opposite ideological sides in Marvel’s Civil War.
9. Northstar and Kyle Jinadu
Back in 1992, Marvel announced its first major gay character, Northstar. Twenty years later, Marvel made headlines by announcing his marriage to longtime partner Kyle Jinadu. In many ways, their union represents both the plight of the X-Men and the struggle many people face in the real world of not being accepted.
10. Green Arrow and Black Canary
Green Arrow and Black Canary are opposites and perfect foils: Black Canary’s calm determination balances Green Arrow’s fiery temper. Though they certainly have had their problems, they always end up back together. They are a reminder that the right person can inspire us to be a better versions of ourselves.
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