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  1. #31
    Fantastic Member Riv86672's Avatar
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    Ray Palmer.

    And, Batman shouldn’t be the smartest. He should be able to take down smarter ppl, though.

  2. #32
    Ultimate Member Ascended's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frontier View Post
    I think in a raw intelligence sense Batman doesn't compare to Luthor, Michael Holt, or Ray Palmer. He's not a hard scientist.

    I think what Batman is smartest is in instinctual and reactive intelligence where he can take and process a lot of information and use that to his advantage in outsmarting villains or coming up with clever solutions aided by his genius detective skills.

    He can also read people enough to be able to figure out what they're doing to counterattack and subdue them.

    So he's not a genius scientist and not the world's smartest, but he's smart in what he needs to be.
    I agree. Bruce should be incredibly intuitive; he should be able to look at a situation and notice the clues everyone else overlooked. He should be able to mix them together in ways others didn't think of, apply criminal psychology in brilliant, creative ways, and use all that to find the truth. I got no issue with Bats being the world's greatest detective (though I wouldn't complain if Ralph Dibney officially got that title either) but that's not the same thing as being "smartest" in a general sense like we're talking about. Bruce should be able to solve a mystery and find a killer no one else could, but he shouldn't be anywhere near capable of creating super science stuff like time machines or whatever, and shouldn't even be able to understand the instructions if he had them.

    I mean, he stole Terrific's T-Sphere designs. If Bruce was that smart he'd invent his own instead of stealing from Holt.

    As for Lex not figuring out Clark's identity, that's just the prime example of Lex's ego getting in his way and being his fatal flaw. It's not that Lex lacks the intelligence to put Clark's identity together, it's that his ego won't let him believe a being as powerful as Superman would waste time with a 9-5 job, getting yelled at by his boss.
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  3. #33
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    Well, there are many qualifications we have to first establish before we can arrive at the answer. Such as what do we mean by person--is this someone human or quasi-human? Can we include metaphysical beings or extraterrestrials? Exacly what makes someone smart? Is it IQ or is it more than that?

    I think if you say that an evil character is the smartest, you're making a philosophical statement. To me, anyone evil can't be the smartest because they have an impairment, some ideological fixation, that stops them from recognizing the greater good. Someone like Lex has such a fixation on Superman that he can't see the big picture and understand the folly of his actions.

    I would expect the smartest person to be able to look ahead and see the outcome of different actions, then choose which path is best. But maybe this character would be too logical and too removed from the world. Perhaps emotional intelligence is important and we wouldn't want a sociopath to be considered the smartest person.

    A character that has super-powers would have advantages over characters that are supposed to be human. If you say that Batman or Mr. Terrific is the smartest person, even smarter than all the super-powered people, what does that say about them? Are they maybe actually metahuman, because their brains are able to function at the level of a Flash, an Atom or a Superman?

    It seems to me that Barry Allen and Ray Palmer have distinct advantages, because they already started out with high levels of intelligence and then their super-powers enhanced that native genius. Barry's brain works at such a high speed that he can learn anything in seconds. And Ray is a master of sub-atomic physics--his brain could literally be a quantum computer.

    And Superman has so much energy, sensory input and physical invulnerability that he should be able to comprehend things far beyond what ordinary humans know. Then there's Adam Blake, born a hundred thousand years before his time, who would surely qualify as one of the smartest persons in the 20th century.
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  4. #34
    Ultimate Member Ascended's Avatar
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    I think generally we tend to rule out the superhumans in discussions like these.

    Like, I don't believe Barry has any right to be anywhere on a "smartest person" list. He's a good CSI, he doesn't need to be a genius (and if he's a genius then the cases he works on are well below his ability, which takes all the fun out of things). But his powers allow him to take all the time he needs to solve a problem and learn/apply the necessary science. Clark, likewise, has not only the benefit of speed but also enhanced senses, his natural Kryptonian biology likely makes him far smarter than anyone from earth, and solar radiation may increase his brainpower just as it increases his physical power.
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  5. #35
    Mighty Member C_Miller's Avatar
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    Nothing makes me cringe more than Batman being listed as one of the smartest people on Earth. Batman should be a talented Detective and good tactician. He should be extremely intelligent, but I don't think people quite understand what it would mean to be one of the world's smartest humans. That takes all of the appeal from the character for me.

  6. #36
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    It's this peculiar need that some fans have where, because they love Batman, he has to be the best at everything. But for me, that's what kills the character. Batman is supposed to be an ordinary guy, always in danger of being trapped and killed, who just manages to survive by the skin of his teeth. That's what makes it exciting.
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  7. #37
    Mighty Member LifeIsILL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KangMiRae View Post
    Batman should be number one.
    If Batman is the smartest person in DCU, then they are in trouble. There are piles of evidence of him doing dumb stuff despite being a genius. You don't see other smart characters like Mr.Terrific, Reed Richards or Tony Starks making nearly as many mistakes as Batman does....I wonder why.....

  8. #38
    Ultimate Member Ascended's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    It's this peculiar need that some fans have where, because they love Batman, he has to be the best at everything. But for me, that's what kills the character. Batman is supposed to be an ordinary guy, always in danger of being trapped and killed, who just manages to survive by the skin of his teeth. That's what makes it exciting.
    Well, I wouldn't call Bruce "ordinary" but yeah, I agree with the sentiment. I think Bruce is well above the common man (largely due to sheer grit and determination; Bruce is as capable as he is because he's worked hard for it, not because he's just naturally that incredible). But he's still supposed to be a man; flawed and limited and susceptible to failure, who struggles with the challenges he faces. DC hasn't forgotten that he's flawed, and they've made Bruce into an emotional wreck of a human being (and I do love that DKR style asshole Batman), but all the rest of it has been sacrificed to the Batgod; now Batman is the most superhuman hero in DC; capable of defeating anyone, of solving any problem. Where's the fun in that?
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  9. #39
    Mighty Member KangMiRae's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by C_Miller View Post
    Nothing makes me cringe more than Batman being listed as one of the smartest people on Earth. Batman should be a talented Detective and good tactician. He should be extremely intelligent, but I don't think people quite understand what it would mean to be one of the world's smartest humans. That takes all of the appeal from the character for me.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    It's this peculiar need that some fans have where, because they love Batman, he has to be the best at everything. But for me, that's what kills the character. Batman is supposed to be an ordinary guy, always in danger of being trapped and killed, who just manages to survive by the skin of his teeth. That's what makes it exciting.
    Quote Originally Posted by LifeIsILL View Post
    If Batman is the smartest person in DCU, then they are in trouble. There are piles of evidence of him doing dumb stuff despite being a genius. You don't see other smart characters like Mr.Terrific, Reed Richards or Tony Starks making nearly as many mistakes as Batman does....I wonder why.....
    I think Batman should be the smartest because it riles people up.
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  10. #40
    Spectacular Member Dark-Jacket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by qwertyuiop1998 View Post
    I don't think Lex not figuring out who superman is. In Action Comics 1000 Snyder's story he seems know Clark identity from them childhood, He just never cared about
    I'll admit I'm still catching up with Superman rebirth ^^

  11. #41
    Spectacular Member Dark-Jacket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    It's this peculiar need that some fans have where, because they love Batman, he has to be the best at everything. But for me, that's what kills the character. Batman is supposed to be an ordinary guy, always in danger of being trapped and killed, who just manages to survive by the skin of his teeth. That's what makes it exciting.
    I love old (dramatic) stories where Batman needs help or doesn't seem to know how to get out of a trap or a situation. This made me genuinely care for him and be happy that he was lucky this time (and that a porpoise got in the way of that missile...) I've not been a fan of Batman since the 90's I'd love him a little lighter and I'm hopeful after Dark Knights : Metal.

  12. #42
    Moderator Frontier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    I agree. Bruce should be incredibly intuitive; he should be able to look at a situation and notice the clues everyone else overlooked. He should be able to mix them together in ways others didn't think of, apply criminal psychology in brilliant, creative ways, and use all that to find the truth. I got no issue with Bats being the world's greatest detective (though I wouldn't complain if Ralph Dibney officially got that title either) but that's not the same thing as being "smartest" in a general sense like we're talking about. Bruce should be able to solve a mystery and find a killer no one else could, but he shouldn't be anywhere near capable of creating super science stuff like time machines or whatever, and shouldn't even be able to understand the instructions if he had them.
    Well, I think he could at least understand the instructions .
    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    I think generally we tend to rule out the superhumans in discussions like these.

    Like, I don't believe Barry has any right to be anywhere on a "smartest person" list. He's a good CSI, he doesn't need to be a genius (and if he's a genius then the cases he works on are well below his ability, which takes all the fun out of things). But his powers allow him to take all the time he needs to solve a problem and learn/apply the necessary science. Clark, likewise, has not only the benefit of speed but also enhanced senses, his natural Kryptonian biology likely makes him far smarter than anyone from earth, and solar radiation may increase his brainpower just as it increases his physical power.
    I don't think of Barry as a super-genius but I think writers downplay his intelligence a bit too much to make him more like DCAU Flash.

    He's a scientist, he loves science, and his mind can process and utilize information faster then anyone. He's a smart cookie even if he's not as much of a scientific theorist as Jay or Ray Palmer.

    Didn't he build the Cosmic Treadmill, come to think of it?

  13. #43
    Ultimate Member Ascended's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frontier View Post
    Didn't he build the Cosmic Treadmill, come to think of it?
    I think he was reading the instructions.

    With Barry.....there's this thing in tabletop rpg's (Dungeons and Dragons) called "taking 20." It means that, whatever you're doing, you take your time, triple check every little thing. For players, it takes forever to do this. Imagine searching every single inch of a large room, literally using a magnifying glass and poking and prodding each individual brick for traps or hidden doors, inspecting every thread of every piece of clothing for evidence, testing every piece of furniture for hidden pockets. It would take forever right? This is how players ensure they get the highest possible result on the task they're doing. Well, taking 20 is what Barry does, but he's the Flash, so he does it in seconds instead of hours.

    I definitely think Barry is a very intelligent man, but I also think the term "genius" is so painfully watered down in comics it's meaningless. Even Bruce, if we take out the Batgod bullsh*t, would probably barely qualify as a genius in the real world, much less stand at the top of the charts. And the DCU has people infinitely smarter than anyone in the real world; Palmer and Magnus and even Irons.....these guys have done things well beyond modern science, that're just this side of straight up miracles. Barry Allen should not be on that level of smart. But he has the advantage of having all the time in the world, and that helps a whole lot.
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  14. #44
    Extraordinary Member Robotman's Avatar
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    “Smartest” is a broad title. Einstein was the best at physics but I’m sure there are countless others who topped him in other fields. So I’m guessing you mean who is the smartest comic booky super-scientist.

    Quote Originally Posted by Frontier View Post
    Probably Lex, his own ego just gets in the way.

    Probably followed by Mr. Terrific, The Brain...
    I would also say Luthor. He’s probably near the top of every field. he’s kind of the leader of all DC villains and he’d have to be a genius who is 10 steps ahead of everyone in order to keep that amount of chaos in line. And yes, his ego is definitely his downfall.

    Will Magnus is the smartest when it comes to robotics.

    Ray Palmer is the smartest when it comes to particle physics.

    Mr. Terrific may have been the first non meta-human to traverse the multiverse just using his scientific knowledge. That’s a pretty huge feat.

    Batman is the smartest strategist and forensic scientist.

  15. #45
    Savior of the Universe Flash Gordon's Avatar
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    Ohhh if we're talking, like, ENTIRE DCU not just humans? Metron, Superman, Brainiac, etc.

    "Smart" is hella broad though. People have different kinds of smarts. I'm not going to ask Metron of the New Gods to do my taxes, ya know?
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